Managing the excitement levels


Life is still up and down for Pat, and consequently for me too. Good days and bad days, good nights and bad nights; all served up in a haphazard fashion and never knowing which way the coin will fall. Pat is back on antibiotics again having just finished last Wednesday. Our local GP made a house call last night to check Pat out for himself. He gave us the option of having her admitted to hospital so the infection she has, which won’t go away, can be dealt with intravenously, but we (Pat) turned that down. The doctor understood why and wrote the prescription so I could treat Pat here at home.


I got to thinking about levels of excitement the other day, and how they impact on our daily lives. For me and Pat, like most people, we’ve had our fair share. Sometimes an unexpected gift or windfall. A visit from a family member. A holiday abroad for the first time. Babies arriving — four in our house! Moving to Spain and enjoying a big villa with a big pool. Pat and I used to like skinny dipping late in the evening in the pool. It did wonders for my excitement levels, as you can imagine. But as we approach our final years, the excitement levels are moderate and less frequent. With Pat’s condition, I can get excited if she manages to finish the small meal I cooked for her, or if she manages to sleep through the night. Life can be fun, can’t it?


But my excitement level went up a notch during the week: I heard from Joffe Books, and they have scheduled publication of my book, Past Imperfect for the autumn. I wanted to swing Pat around like I did years ago each time my publisher agreed to publish my latest manuscript. But Pat’s emotional responses are miniscule, so I had to enjoy the moment in solitude. However, it will happen and I’m tremendously excited about getting in with such a successful company. I know one swallow doesn’t make a summer, but with luck I may be able to persuade Joffe Books to take on more of my other titles. We’ll see.


I’ve started an advertising campaign on Amazon but have taken the advice of a new member of Mark Dawson’s long list of experts: Janet Margot. Janet worked for Amazon for eight years on the ads team and brings a new kind of expertise to Mark’s team. Her advice was to begin a campaign (for beginners) with one book and run two ads: one with auto targeting, the other with manual (keywords). I decided to try with my World War 2 thriller, Shadow of the Wolf. By stepping away from A&A, thrillers, crime etc., I believe I can have a better idea of what kind of impact my ads have. So far, very little has happened. I’ll give it a few days before I start tinkering. Will this turn out to be a successful campaign for me? Hope so. Wish me luck.

I NEVER KNEW I WOULD BE A WRITER.