Tag Archives | New Fiction

Prodigals with Tea and Cake

My third book has been published this summer by Onwards and Upwards – a novel called The Lost Journey Homeward. It is a contemporary take on the parable of the Prodigal Son, though in my book the prodigal is a daughter, Kate, who strays off the rails and falls into bad company overseas. The son, David, is a stay-at-home workaholic who runs a debt-ridden hotel. They try to get things back on track as they look for love but find disaster. Their father, Theo, is a renowned sculptor who tries to help his wayward children. My story interweaves the relationships between the family members, people they encounter and the ones they love.

I have a Book Launch on Thursday 10th September at 4pm in Salisbury at the Sarum College Bookshop in the Cathedral Close. I shall be giving a short talk with a reading from my book and there will be free tea and cake. Not for free but good value is the paperback which sells for £9.99 and the author – that’s me – will be there to sign your copy! Everyone is welcome. Do come – and bring a friend.

Book Signing Satisfaction

 

Authors must help their publishers to market their own books these days. We tend to target local booksellers to hold book launches, talks and signings in our own areas, where we know people and can spread the word or words (literally) to our contacts and friends.  It’s quite easy to sell to friends, who are generally supportive and buy.  But selling to strangers is the most satisfying – they are buying the book not because they know you but because they like the look of the cover, or they are intrigued by the story outline. Perhaps they’ve read a review or heard about the book, or they’ve just met you, chatted with you and decided to buy it. What a compliment!  How satisfying.

IMG_9615 Milton Abbas

 

 

 

Moving on to new Work

I woke up the other morning with a bunch of plot ideas in connection with my next book, a novel to be set in Dorset. In the earlier part of the year, I was doing research on the locations and working on the back history of my main characters, but I’ve only mapped out an outline of the story and need to work on this.   The new project was inevitably put on the back-burner whilst I wrestled with the editing process, corrected proofs and worked with the publishers of ‘The Lost Journey Homeward’.  Then I’ve had to get involved in the promotion of the novel, now that it’s published, and I’ve had a number of book signings and events already with quite a few coming up soon. But bubbling up from within my head, like a spring of water that won’t stay below the surface, are ideas and enthusiasm for the book I now want to write.   Get out the notebook.  I’ve another story and it’s a work in progress.

Juggling Books and Music – on Stilts!

IMG_9434The Dorset Midsummer Music and Food Festival on Saturday 20th June at Warren Farm on Bulbarrow Hill was so enjoyable!  During the day, at the bookstall, I was selling and signing copies of my new book THE LOST JOURNEY HOMEWARD and listening to the music on the stage below us.  Children were amused by Jamie Jigsaw, an entertainer and juggler, and here he is with my book whilst I hold his juggling batons. I wonder if I need to grow a bit taller for a better impact? Or wear brighter colours?  I’ve always wanted to walk on stilts!  Later that evening we were all dancing on the hillside under the stars to the vibrant sound of ‘Lionstar.’

 

 

Book Launch in the Garden

My new book ‘The Lost Journey Homeward’ has been well and truly launched – on Sunday 14th June. I decided to do this At Home –  in my own garden in Dorset.  My last two books had their launch parties in London – the first was held on  a houseboat in the Thames and the second took place in an auction gallery at Bonhams in Knightsbridge. This time my husband, Michael, organised the whole thing: drinks from a bar that was a genuine Edwardian handcart, delicious canapés, staff to serve, fine weather, children running around, balloons, ice cream and – most important of all – many friends from South West.  All I had to do was provide the books, get someone to sell them – and then sign them.  Friends usually buy my books; the harder job is to get strangers to buy them – in bookshops and online.  But on my third book launch, we were all outside, the sun shone and it was fun!

Publication Day

frontcover

Strange to think, now my new book is for sale, that soon people might be reading ‘The Lost Journey Homeward’, turning the pages and assessing whether they like the story and what they think about my friends, the characters.  It’s a long journey writing a book – this one has consumed over three years of my life – but during the ‘work in progress’ stage, there is a intimate, private relationship between me, the author, and my characters and their secret lives within my plot. When a publisher and an editor become involved, as they did seven months ago, some of that privacy and secrecy is peeled away but there’s still enough of a protective shell left between us  – me and my story – and the rest of the world to feel safe and comfortable.  Today, now that we, author and book, are not only in printed form but also published as a eBook, that final layer is cast off, like a discarded husk, and we are exposed, quivering oyster-like with raw apprehension, vulnerable to criticism and open to attack.  It’s daunting.  Painful.  And exciting!