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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

It's all a worry

This week has been not too bad with Pat. It’s the last week before she’s due to recommence chemo (on Tuesday). Her hair is beginning to grow again, but it could all disappear once the chemo is back on. It isn’t all plain sailing though; her mini stroke has left its mark, and I’m concerned that she isn’t making any real progress. But that’s me worrying and wanting to see a speedy cure. Pat has had some stimulation in the visit from our number two son, Terry, our grand-daughter, Gemma and her little ‘un, Orin. Terry has just come back from our grandson’s wedding in Atlanta, so he was able to tell Pat all about that. Tuesday evening a lady friend from church came to sit with Pat while I went out for the evening. They did some flower arranging. Well, our friend did the arranging but at least it was something for Pat. She had a blood test yesterday in readiness for the haematologist on Monday. Just prior to that she’ll be having a chest X-Ray. Hopefully the doc will give the go-ahead for the chemo to begin again.

My evening out on Tuesday was to a book talk at Bognor Regis library given by best-selling author, Lesley Thomson. I’ve never heard of the lady, but it gave me an opportunity to step out of my current world and into the other one I occupy when I can: my book world. I bought one of her paperbacks, The Detective’s Daughter and started reading it on Wednesday. I know I’m going to have difficulty in getting through the book because her writing style is so alien to me, it’s a struggle. But her book sales are stratospheric, so there must be a lot of people out there who have no problem with her style. She wrote her first book years ago in Sydney while on a work visa out there, and didn’t write another book for twenty years. I know someone like that!

My Amazon ads are still drifting aimlessly, but I am beginning to make sense of some of it. I won’t be discouraged though. In fact, I’ve extended the ads for another month. It isn’t costing me any money because I’m not selling the book I’m advertising, but I am selling some of my other titles: just over thirty this month. I am now planning to launch another campaign for my latest book, No Time to Die. I’m confident I can get enough keywords that suit the genre, and I’ll be targeting Robert Galbraith in the first instance (J.K.Rowling) for the Private Investigator element.

I made another decision during the night as I lay wide awake next to my soundly sleeping wife after a short drama. I realised that my efforts to continue with my current WIP were like sowing seeds on to stony ground. I came to the conclusion that I needed to package my Marcus Blake thrillers (three now) in the way the majority of series authors do, and come up with a fourth novel. I would need to redo all the jackets and remedy the impact of the fonts, but there are plenty of examples on Amazon of those successful authors whose book jackets are literally all identical. It has to be my project for 2020, beginning as soon as I come up with an idea for the fourth “in the series”.

I’m involved in a book promotion over the next five days. Hasn’t cost me anything, but the last one I did with this group netted a dozen sales for the book, which was good. This time it’s for The Eagle’s Covenant. The price has been dropped to £0.99 for the duration of the promotion. The link to the thrillers available is Why not have a look? You’ll see my jacket there alongside the sixteen other books. We have a combined reach of 41,000 subscribers, which is pretty good.

So, where to now? Tomorrow is our harvest festival at church. I took some grub in today after getting my flu jab. Monday is the hospital day and Tuesday will be chemo day. Once I’ve finished posting this blog, I’ll be doing the ironing and watching footie on the TV. Oh, one other thing: I gave nine hardback copies of my romance, Past Imperfect, to the lady who looked after Pat during the week for her book group. I passed those on to her earlier last week. She said she was surprised at the ‘quality’ of the prose, and then apologised because she didn’t mean she thought I wouldn’t be able to produce anything like that. She loved the book too. It’s always nice when you hear unsolicited comments like that. I just wish I could use them to sell more books. You never know though. Wish me luck!

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