Well, here I am in England, and the first week and a half of my “book promotion tour”* has just whizzed by in a whirl (hmm can you whizz in a whirl? I rather think whizzing and whirling are probably two different motions that would end up making you dizzy!? There you are then – it must be true that you can do both at the same time because I do feel rather dizzy!!)
It is Saturday morning and I am doing this bit of “office work” whilst my friend Ken is cooking bacon and eggs for breakfast… “yes, Fatima, I KNOW I shouldn’t really be eating bacon and eggs, but they are nice and it will only be the second plate of bacon and eggs I have had since being here!” … we really can’t get decent bacon in Brazil, so it’s a treat of my visit.
The novel is not yet officially launched (next Tuesday 1st October in Louth is the day! At Wright’s bookshop if you can come along) but I have been busy making sure my publicity is in place and doing interviews and sending out press releases and so on and it is all such fun, doing my own marketing. Having spent so many years of my life instructing students about marketing, I really have to get it right for my own novel, don’t I?
The trouble is, though, that one does not have a well-oiled marketing department to collect the data and prepare the promotional output, and make the sales calls, and do the research analysis, and …and… So I am very busy doing all of these myself. Friends and relatives are kindly helping with computer/internet links and printing and storing the ‘product’ – there are lots of boxes of books to carry around as well! So, Thank you all for helping. But I cannot delegate most of the jobs that need doing, and I have thus occasionally ended up whizzing and whirling at the same time!
I ended up with a raging headache yesterday afternoon, for example, trying to do too many things in too short a time. I did manage to organise ten minutes in the afternoon to have a cup of tea and some tablets and then found a quiet road where I could put the hire car in the shade of a large tree and have a half hour snooze. And then I was right as rain again and able to drive over to the other side of the country for my visit to Ken’s.
Talking of ‘rain’ – that is one thing that hasn’t happened since I have been back here. The weather is wonderful for my visit – a balmy ‘Indian summer’ of late September of the kind that has not been seen in English Septembers for quite a while. And, talking of cars, I have suddenly started thinking of the costs associated with cars in terms of the number of books I have to sell in order to pay for that full tank of fuel – a sort of ‘business associated’ way of thinking I had not had before when actually writing the novel. Interesting – but slightly disturbing when I have no idea of how many books I am actually going to sell.
So, independent publishing has several positive aspects which I have enjoyed and am enjoying. But the negative aspect is that I have no “deal” where I get an upfront payment plus royalties if the sales go beyond a certain figure. As an Indie author I have to accept ALL the risk of the cost of publishing, if the book does not appeal to the market out there. Ah well, fingers crossed, hey?
There we are, just a short blog to keep you all up to date with my visit, more later next week I expect. Cheerio for now! Off I go whizzing and whirling again!
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*The ‘book’ is, of course, my novel “Captain Cobbler: the Lincolnshire Uprising, 1536” available from online bookshops in paper versions and in e-book form. The e-books are extremely good value for money at only $2.99 or £1.99 respectively. One reviewer says of the novel:-
“With a cast of more than a hundred characters—many genuine historical figures”, the author, “…channels the spirit of his namesake…while presenting a vivid portrait of early 16th-century England during a most tumultuous time. With a thread of insurrection sewn throughout, the novel unfolds a colourful tapestry of the townsfolk of Louth and surrounding Lincolnshire as they debate and execute their plan to take on the royals.” (Kirkus reviews)
Competition corner just for Lincolnshire folk!
I want to give away a number of my books. So here is a competition for you to acquire a signed copy of my novel Captain Cobbler: the Lincolnshire Uprising 1536.
There are well over 150 characters in the book, many of them true-life people. So, if you live in Lincolnshire and buy an e-book and can find a character with your surname, all you have to do is to visit my website captaincobbler.com and leave a comment, including a sentence from the book which names that character, leave your contact details, and your name will go into a draw for a signed copy of the novel. First name drawn gets a hard-cover copy and the next four get soft covers.
If your name does not appear you can still compete! By accident during the proof-reading one name is missing from the list of characters at the beginning of the book. If you can tell me the first name of this character and the village he or she comes from – your name goes into the hat for a prize as well. Good luck! Don’t forget – leave a comment at captaincobbler.com with your contact details. (Or email them to me at email@example.com)
Competition closes 18th October and I will try and deliver the books personally before I leave England for my USA launch on 22nd October