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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

Half an eye on things that matter

I sold another copy of my mini, autobiography, The Sum of my Life (The early years). Somebody must like me, or is curious about me. Two sales in a month mean that on a pro rata rate since I published the book it shouldn’t be too long before I hit the best seller status. Ah well, back to reality.

I did very little writing during the week because of a cataract operation on Wednesday. Obviously it does kind of cramp your style a little. I managed about a thousand words, so I’m pleased with that. The fish tank turned up Thursday, so that was another distraction. Perhaps I should write a novella about the chap who bought a fish tank and tried to put it together with one eye. He ends up on the funny farm because it was rather like easy assembly IKEA stuff. It’s all about planning — wait a reasonable time before launching into the next venture.

I’ve been in contact with a lady who does the hospital talk radio. She will be interviewing me in the near future with a kind of “Desert Island Discs” feel to the programme. Trying to tunnel into my past and come up with favourites proved difficult. Some of the stuff I enjoyed in my middle years were bands and musicians like Supertramp, Dire Straits, Jacques Loussier, Isao Tomita (who?), and many others. Oh, and the song “You are my Sunshine” by any artist: but that’s another story.

The idea of the hospital talk is simply another venture by CHINDI authors into expanding the name into the local community by way of supporting charities and meeting the reading — and non-reading — public. We will be shadowing the #lovetoread campaign by the BBC and hope to encourage other book groups to do the same. We believe that the more, local authors get involved, so the public will begin to recognise that there are people like us who offer a credible alternative to the major publishing houses.

We are also planning a Ghost Tour around Chichester. The idea is to take people round the historic places in the city, or any pubs that hold a macabre secret, and tell them why these places are haunted. It’s complete fiction of course, but that’s our raison d’etre. Some of the local Bognor Writers Group may also be involved.

I have stopped my Facebook ad. for now. My results were not encouraging, so I’ll change the slant of the ad. and activate it again in the next couple of days. Something else I did which I believed might encourage my subscribers was to contact them for a chat and the link to my blog. The result was that twenty two unsubscribed. I read of other authors on the Web who hesitate to get in touch with their subscribers because this is how it usually ends. When you’re building your list by about one a day, losing that many represents most of your past month. But it was their choice, and I still have over 1100.

I am still trying to upload my latest title, A Dangerous Game to Ingram Spark to take advantage of their latest, free offer. I had no problems with my earlier books, but somehow they have shifted the goalposts and it’s giving me a headache. Not to worry; I’ll get there in the end. Wish me luck!

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