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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

Climbing mountains

The week began poorly for Pat, but she has made good progress now. Her situation prompted me to make two decisions which resulted in a chest X-Ray on Tuesday and then a doctor’s appointment for another problem on Thursday. She is now on a different antibiotic tablet because her infection was resistant to the earlier one prescribed. I constantly find myself in the invidious position of having to diagnose Pat’s problems and hope I get them right. I have now added a finger oxygen monitor to the paraphernalia I use to keep an eye on her. I’ll be wearing scrubs next!

On Wednesday evening I went along to the Chindi Christmas Book launch at the Swan Hotel in Arundel. You can see the book here: As I mentioned in my post last week, I had agreed to take Beryl Kingston along. Beryl was our celebrity guest: an author who has sold over a million books no less. I knew Beryl had contributed a short story to the book about growing up in war-torn London, so I asked her about that and about living in the big city during the war (me too). It turns out we were both brought up within couple of miles of each other: Beryl in Tooting and me in Wandsworth. I lived in the Garret Lane which ran from Wandsworth to Tooting (about two miles away). So as you can imagine, we got on like a house on fire. Beryl is almost 90 years of age and has a tremendously strong spirit for her age. We spent the car journey talking about London and the book world, and I was also able to catch up with her during the book launch once she’d finished ‘mingling’. Quite an evening for me; not because I had the pleasure of Beryl’s company, but also to be able to indulge myself in the world of writing and talking to like-minded people. Great evening. I had a friend from church come in that evening to look after Pat, which gave me the opportunity to spend a few hours out of the house.

My reading this week is a crime novel by Neil Lancaster called Going Dark (1912946068 is the ASIN number if you like well written crime novels). Finally I have a book which I’m enjoying and not moaning about.

On the subject of Amazon book numbers (ASIN), I have just finished uploading forty campaigns to Amazon Ads, with another twenty to go. I used ASINs to search for relevant best sellers on Amazon, and from there produced numerous books through a site called (free by the way). Sometimes I would get as many as 300 connections to one ASIN. From there is was a case of jiggery-pockery and the confusing world of Excel spreadsheets to produce suitable keywords for my campaigns on Amazon. Sound confusing? You bet; it took me hours to learn how to do all this, courtesy of Bryan Cohen’s excellent AMS ads course. Twenty more campaigns to upload and I will have sixty running for a month. This is all for my book, The Boy from Berlin. If all this works, I’ll see a positive upswing in my book sales which are trickling along the flat, bottom line with an occasional spike. Do I worry? Got more than selling books to worry about. Wish me luck.

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