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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

The Long and Winding Road

It’s always good to see fellow indie authors from our Chindi book group doing well at local events. Three of our stalwart members — Angela Petch, Rosemary Noble and Patricia Feinberg Stoner — launched new books at Worthing yesterday. Early comments show there were some good results. This coming week it’s the turn of more of our group doing their bit for the Alzheimer’s Society. They’ll be turning up at the HSBC bank at Rustington tomorrow and Friday to showcase their books and raise money for the society. The post code, if you can get along to the event, is BN16 3DB.

I won’t be involved in any more Chindi events for a while because changes here in the Parker home leave me having to look after Pat. Her leg infection hasn’t gone down yet, and the cancer diagnosis leaves us with a fairly rocky road ahead. For that reason I’ve withdrawn from Chindi events for the simple reason I can’t make promises about my availability over the next six months or so.

Despite being chief cook and bottle washer, I have tried to keep up with my writing. I managed to send out the second part of Natasha’s story to my subscribers ( I received two replies and had eleven unsubs! The open rate was poor, but it simply reinforces the fact that you have to work at this game, otherwise it will all whither on the vine. I also made another decision about my romance, Past Imperfect. I have decided to launch it next year with a professionally designed jacket and spend some money advertising. I read through the book last week. I managed that by reading it on my laptop while Pat was watching TV. I even had football on in the background listening to the commentary. Makes no sense, I know, but I eventually turned the commentary off. I finished the read-through and have now embarked on an edit. It was professionally edited by the way (Robert Hale), but there were a few typos and a couple of oddities I knew could be changed.

I’m learning more about the game when it comes to running Michael Parker Books as a business. Not doing much about it mind you, but there is so much information coming from the web that it fries your brain. Well, it does mine! I have managed an infitessimally small gain in my advertising, but nothing to shout about. I know it needs more work and soaking up more instruction from Mark Dawson’s SPF course. Mark has updated the whole thing, particularly Amazon Advertising. Seems even Mark has been caught out by Amazon’s drive for competitiveness. It looks like the weak will go to the wall unless they cough up more money. I’m talking about Amazon, not Mark Dawson!

I managed to get some work done on my WIP, and will soon be reaching that point when I have to write Natasha into the story, hoping that I can do that with subtlety. It’s a conundrum, but that’s what writers do, particularly writers of mystery.

Looking ahead then, Christmas could be different for me and Pat this year. Then into 2019 without a real clear view how it will be. When I look back a year ago, I had great plans for 2018. It all seemed to start well, but looks like it’s coming to a disappointing end. I’m hoping 2019 will be better. So what with my writing plans and looking after Pat, it looks like it’s going to be a long and winding road. Wish me luck!

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