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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

Round up!

May 29th. 2015

In the last two weeks I’ve seen much of the countryside, blocked motorways, new family members and a small rise in my book sales. We travelled up to Norfolk to meet up with our two great-grandchildren, Harrison and Archer. Archer was born in February but we hadn’t been able to see him because he lives in Cyprus. Harrison celebrated his third birthday while we were in Norfolk, but we lived in Spain when he was born, so this was a first time for the two little ones and me and Pat. It was a great weekend which also included our eldest son, Vincent’s retirement from the RAF. After the long weekend we travelled up to Ruskington in Lincoln to spend a bit of time with our two friends Brian and Pauline. Oh, and the dog, Daisy, their new Chihuahua. We brought them down here for a week and then drove back home with them. On the way back the following day we crawled round the M25. During the week we went to Arundel where some tosser clouted my car in the car park. No telephone number left for me, just the prospect of a bill to get my car repaired. Why are people like that?

I’ve kept a sneaky eye on my book sales while we’ve been away and am pleased to see my average just going over one a day. No big deal you might think, but a sale is a sale. My subscriber list has grown steadily and at the time of writing has reached 145. I will begin promoting again, but first things first; I need to get on with uploading a book jacket for Ingram Spark: they rejected the one I thought would be fine. My ability with PhotoShop is limited, so that means a teeth gnashing time trying to adjust the size of the jacket spine lettering to fit the template.

I have been getting on with some side issues with the author group, Chindi (Chichester Authors). I picked up a display rack from a firm way out in the Hampshire countryside when we were travelling back from Lincolnshire. The sign on the roadside said “Wriggley Tin”. No, that wasn’t the name of the company, but it was the right farm track we needed.

I’ve been giving a great deal of thought about my writing process and the direction I’m going. My instincts tell me to keep going; keep plugging away. But as time goes by I seem to be losing the will to follow those instincts. A couple of weeks ago I spent a bit of time with a bookshop owner in Petersfield. He used to work in publishing and advised me not to drop my publisher in favour of self-publishing. He said I was fortunate to have a publisher. And considering the time, effort and cost of producing a paperback, I do wonder if it’s worth the effort. I can produce an eBook no trouble at all, and it costs very little: beans in fact. If I stay with my publisher, and providing she likes my next offering, she will produce an eBook anyway. I can concentrate on my own paperbacks and hopefully rely on sales of my traditionally published work on Amazon.

Looking ahead (but not too far), we are off on our cruise round Alaska in three weeks’ time, then a wedding in Norfolk early July. I should have a clear run until our visit to Spain in October, so perhaps I will have something to offer my publisher. We’ll see. Wish me luck!

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