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  • Michael Parker

Frustration doesn't even cut it!

November ended possibly a little better than it started for me in terms of production rather than sales. When I published my latest crime thriller, A Song in the Night, I saw an immediate uptake in reaction to my Facebook ads and started seeing a constant increase in page reads. I also sold seven, plus a few of my other titles. Here we go, I thought: big Oak trees from little acorns grow. But it cost a lot of money for what I was getting, so I switched to Amazon ads and the bottom fell out of my book world. Nothing — zilch. I was getting no reaction, no page reads and, consequently, I wasn’t spending any money. But the annoying irony is that I started getting downloads for my WW2 story, Shadow of the Wolf, which I’d put on D2D as a free book. In a little over a month I have given away sixty two of those with no advertising.


My next plan was to launch two brand new, identical Amazon campaigns in UK and USA. After four days I have just almost 5000 impressions and three clicks. No-one is interested enough in the book jacket and blurb to even click and see what they think. So, the bonus is I’m still not spending any money, but I’m stagnating in the book market. I don’t know what the answer is yet, but as a side bet, I’ve purchased two Cyber Monday deals (it’s Thursday as I write this) on Kindle Book Review, who I’ve used in the past, for A Song in the Night, and The Devil’s Trinity. Incidentally, I sell more of the latter on D2D than all my other books — and that is with no advertising.


Beyond all that though, I’ve been busy. I used the NaNoWriMo month to complete a Romance; something I have never written as a standalone novel. But the difference is, it will be published under the pen name, Emma Carney. Why? You may ask. Well, it seems I can get no traction with my own name, and goodness knows I have been around a long time, so I thought, why not? Someone may like my love story enough to buy a copy. I’ve ordered a proof copy, which is due to arrive next week, so I expect, hope, to have it ready in time for publishing by Christmas.


My other life, that which fills most of my days and routines, continues in a fairly mundane pattern with occasional interruptions, happy ones of course, with family visits, phone calls, chats etc. The rain has tormented us on the south coast, reaching daily levels far in excess of previous records. We’ve had local flooding, but nothing like we have seen on the National and World news.


I began preparing for Christmas and wrote up all my Christmas cards. These, apart for a few, have been posted or delivered by hand. After that, I dragged the Christmas tree out of the loft and began decorating that. I’m not as creative in that department as I am in the book world, but I try.


Another diversion for me (and millions of other people) is the Football World Cup. I hope, like a good book, it has a happy ending for the English fans.

One other thing in passing. I was described as “Gifted” in the Financial Times years ago. Last night I watched the BBC documentary on Christine McVie; the singer, songwriter and keyboard player with the band, Fleetwood Mac, who passed away earlier this week. Now, she was “Gifted”.


What now for me? More attempts at reaching for the stars I suppose. I’ll be going to a book event in Arundel tomorrow. I know a few of the authors who will be there. It’s something I would have done before my lovely wife passed away, but not anymore. So, I hope you all have a fabulous Christmas and a terrific New Year.

Stay safe.


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