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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

Always looking for that light-bulb moment.

Pat is out of hospital now; she came home on Wednesday. It was confirmed that she’d had a mini stroke; some kind of conflict with her tablets. Thankfully Pat has full use of her limbs and most of her faculties. Her responses are mostly mono-syllabic, but she can always grasp what is meant when questions are put to her. She has difficulty recalling much, but there are signs of improvement even though they are minimal. I am told, by people who have experienced this kind of thing, that recovery is usually 100%. I certainly hope so, but the poor girl has chemo to put up with as well. She begins her fourth round next Tuesday, provided the haematologist approves it. I remember one of my chemo sessions being postponed after a period of isolation.

This weekend was to have been a big one for us: our No.2 grandson is getting married in America next week. We would have gone but for what’s happened to Pat. Meanwhile two of our sons are going with their families, so for us the videos will be something to look forward to.

I finally managed to complete the first two hour video training session of Bryan Cohen’s excellent Amazon Ads School. I now have to do the homework which is to post three ads on Amazon and try to make sense of everything Bryan has told us. These ads, although meant to draw in some money, are more about learning and gaining some kind of traction among the Amazon readers and to eradicate all the unnecessary keywords that might prove to be useless. There are other pitfalls as well that need avoiding, but getting some ads out there is the only way to learn and find that light-bulb moment. And on the subject of getting ads out there: my sales this week have been practically zero — two copies, which means no-one is seeing me on the Amazon product pages because I’m not advertising. I’m hoping to start my campaign tomorrow.

I received the six author copies of my latest book, No Time to Die on Thursday, and posted five of them out to our four sons and one to a friend of ours in Lincoln. The cost of sending the book to Australia was just over £7 — more than the book’s worth I think. But I had to sign it for our Aussie boy. He probably won’t read it, but I live in hopes. Incidentally, the books were printed in Poland.

I did something yesterday I didn’t expect to do, and that was to start loosely plotting the sequel to my pulp fiction thriller, Hunted. It’s been beavering away in my head for a while now, and I’ve tried to ignore it because of looking after Pat and getting all the jobs done, not to mention spending hours up at the hospital. But the first concept, the opening preamble if you like, is down on paper. I’m well pleased with it too. Trouble is, I don’t know where to go from there yet. I guess I will.

I managed to get out and do a big shop today. Two friends of ours from church came in and sat with Pat. I was out for two and a half hours, spent a fortune and got everything on my list. I couldn’t believe I was actually looking forward to going to the shops and being allowed the time to get what I wanted as well as what was on the list. Perhaps in today’s diverse world, I should identify as a woman one day a week and enjoy shopping more often. No? No, I didn’t think so either. Whatever comes, I’ll soldier on.

Those of you who are in Mark Dawson’s SPF group will know that he has organised an SPF Live convention in London next March. Trouble is, there’s only room for 300 people, and he knows it will be well over-subscribed. The tickets go on sale at 2pm Monday. I can imagine people glued to their computers if they’re at work, hoping the boss doesn’t see them as they try to add their names to the list. I’ll be at the hospital with Pat for a mid-day appointment. If she doesn’t need any X-rays or scans that day, I could make it back in time for the 2pm deadline. Here’s hoping. Wish me luck.

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