April 3rd, 2017
As usual, I’d like to thank Simon for last week’s blog. The advice given is really worth taking. If you’ve got an interest, or a hobby, then why not start out small and try writing articles about it for magazines and websites. Not a huge project – something you can fit in around your other work. But there will come a time when you can look back at what you’ve written and you may realise that there’s enough accumulated knowledge to actually make the basics for a book.
Obviously it would be great if you could get a publisher interested in this. It would be even better if they were willing to give you an advance and ensure that there was plenty of publicity after publication, but these days perhaps that’s expecting too much! The other – and increasing popular – way forward is self-publishing. If you are interested in going down this route then an ideal opportunity to find out more about it is at The 5th Self-Publishing Conference. It’s being held on Saturday 22nd April from 9am to 6pm at the University of Leicester. The registration fee is £65 per person and this includes a delegate’s pack, morning coffee, buffet lunch, afternoon tea, a drinks reception and a choice from more than 16 sessions on different aspects of self-publishing. To me, that sounds great value for money! Read the rest of this entry »
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April 4th, 2016
When I first started watching this clip I must confess to having reservations. I thought the content might by ‘too American’; I felt that Grace spoke rather too fast and she seems fond of a pet hate of mine – using your fingers to put ‘inverted commas’ around what you are saying.
But when I’d watched it through, I certainly warmed to her and I think the advice she gives is really sensible. Here are the main points she makes, and you can’t argue with any of them. Read the rest of this entry »
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June 8th, 2015
Our kids dragged us to the Manchester Film and Comic Con last weekend. Well, I say dragged … I was more excited than them. It was a huge event, packed with dealers, big screen TVs, an auditorium for talks, and rows of desks where celeb’s were signing graphic novels, DVDs, original artwork, baseball caps, etc.
My ten year old son was after ‘retro’ games, and we soon found some. So while he hummed and hahed over Pokemon and Donkey Kong I had a look round. I noticed one particular table which was quite simple (by comic con standards.) On a plain black cloth, it held just a few piles of books, all copies of four paperbacks that were neatly laid out on display – all clearly part of a series. Behind the table was a woman in a striking outfit – part Tolkien’s Rivendell, part Mos Eisley spaceport.
“Are you the author?” I said.
“Yes,” she said
And that’s how I came to meet the inspirational C. G. Hatton. Read the rest of this entry »
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June 5th, 2015
Looking through recent blogs, I was particularly interested in the comments from Kerry Chiron who, like me, is permanently resident in France. My experience is that, over recent years, writers’ and poets’ circles have sprung up. Of course, as in Britain, their quality and usefulness is very varied as it depends on the make- up of the group. I have also found among British friends people who, although not writers themselves, are avid readers and well able to offer helpful comments and suggestions about my work.
I agree wholeheartedly about the positive impact of the internet. It is my research tool, its only drawback being that I often get so interested in my discoveries that I lose sight of the fact that I am supposed to be writing a book!
My first foray into serious writing was when, soon after we arrived here, I realised that Peter Mayle hadn’t invented those bizarre incidents in Provence! Read the rest of this entry »
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September 22nd, 2014
They used to call it ‘Vanity-Publishing,’ but that was back in the days of rotary telephones and four channel TV. These days it’s ‘Self-Publishing,’ and it’s quite the thing. There’s loads of ‘Book-Making’ websites out there, Amazon even has one of its own. But are they any good? What do they actually provide? Do you have to pay them up front? And do they take a cut of your profits? (should you ever make any). Read the rest of this entry »
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