Tag Archives: Waterstones

Kate vs the Dirtboffins paperback – Out Today!

booflash

A big day today – Kate vs the Dirtboffins, the funniest novel you will read this year – IS OUT IN PAPERBACK!

Yes, you can head on down to your local Waterstones and order a real, physical copy for £7.99.

Check it out on the Waterstones website.

Or, if you are reading this at your desk and it’s wet outside, go to Amazon.

Check it out on the Amazon website.

And if you want the cheaper option, they have the Kindle version – and you can read our reviews!

Or if you’d like a signed copy, drop me an e-mail and I’ll sort it out post free.

That’s Christmas sorted then!

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Are we going backwards?

 

Candice: I read with interest on yesterday’s BBC website news that the previous owner of Waterstones believes that ebooks are already in decline.

I’ve previously written about how I am not sure about the whole e-reader thing.  I go as far as to buy books to read on my iPad but I still prefer the physical item than a tablet. So whats in it for Tim Waterstone, especially as he doesn’t even own the shop any more? To quote Tim, “E-books have developed a share of the market, of course they have,” he said. “But every indication – certainly from America – shows the share is already in decline. The indications are that it will do exactly the same in the UK.”

According to Tim the physical nature of a book is so rooted in our psyche that we will struggle as people to all adopt the new technology.  Now I’m not sure about this as we all survived without mobile phones a few years ago but now you can’t move for people playing with them like they are an umbilical cord.  In fact, I watched ‘One born every minute’ tonight for the first time ever (thank god I didn’t watch it before I had Erin) and  the first thing everyone did after giving birth was pick up the phone.

I also don’t disagree with him as I like a book to hold and feel but I am not sure the march of technology will stop just because the man who had a book shop says so.  I think its more important that we actually save the idea of reading as a whole rather than the format, I don’t care where people get their writing fix from as long as they continue to do it.

 

 

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Musing on Polly Courtney

Candice: So another lovely author has given  us some key tips on how the get going in this tough world of publishing.  It seems it’s all about the self publishing.

Right, I’ll just go and pop down to the printers and get 5,000 copies made and then stick them on Amazon then.

Seriously, it’s not as easy as it looks.  Years ago this was called ‘Vanity’ Publishing, where you could get your book printed and bound to look like the real thing then hand it round to your mates – “Look I’m a published author“.  I met a man once who did this, telling everyone that he was an expert in acting skills off the back of his book.  You won’t be surprised to discover he was a con man.

So, how is this different?  Well look at Polly’s planning.  It’s more like the project management I have to undertake at work – marketing strategy, time line, launch plan – than just sticking a word document on an email and saying “print me some”.  The route to distribution compared to the old style of ‘Get agent, get publisher, get published’ might be different but the tools she uses are the same as they will.

What do we do with this information?  Well at the moment we are still looking at the conventional route; because we like the idea of being fawned over, taken to lunch and being invited to premieres.  But realistically, it looks like self publishing is the way forward.

But we wont be taking this lightly.  I refuse to send something out that hasn’t been properly edited, proofed, copy and grammar checked.  When it sees the light of day it will be a quality publication that won’t put people off due to its poor spelling.

Taking this route will also solve the pigeon-hole problem.  I think we will have the same thing as Polly as we are delving into a genre but not following a well-worn path.  “Where do we go in Waterstones?” Is what the marketer will cry – well I don’t know but that doesn’t matter on Amazon.

Now Phil and I just need to find some time to get that editing done!

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A chat with Daisy Waugh – Part Two

Daisy WaughPart 2 of our chat with Daisy Waugh. If you missed the first installment, where were you? OK, follow this link to it. Enjoy

How long did it take to write your books?

Some take longer than others. Last Dance With Valentino took many years. But that was partly because I wrote several chick novels in between, also had several babies. Also I was learning about a new period in history. Melting the Snow on Hester Street, also set in early 20th Century America took me a year to write.

What about the editing process, does this take longer than getting the first draft down? Does the story change much during this time or have you got it pretty much planned out before starting?

The editing process is by far the longest bit. Also the most enjoyable. The first draft is fast and  pretty agonising. I always have a skeleton structure but I have no idea if what I’m writing is drivel, and a lot of it  is- But I have to force myself to keep writing and not look back.  Otherwise I can – and have – spent months and months and MONTHS fiddling with the opening  scenes of a book. It doesn’t necessarily improve them. Once you have something on paper, the editing, cutting, honing and improving is a joy – at least I think so.

How do you feel about the current state of the publishing world and book’s in general, is there still a market for writing?  How about the reading format, do you prefer books or e-reader devices like Kindle?

There will always be market for good story telling! Look how the thriller market thrives.  I think the Richard and Judy book club does a great a service to non pretentious fiction writing, by promoting good, intelligent  well written novels which are a generally a pleasure to read.

I get a bit depressed watching people on the tube fiddling vacuously with their bloody smart phones – I WISH they were reading novels. Because I think people forget what a joy it is to be lost in a good novel. I also get frustrated by the weight we give to ‘literary’ fiction. Reading novels – intelligent and well written –  is meant to be a pleasure, not an exercise in self improvement.

Don’t like Kindles. Spend all day looking at a screen – and anyway I like the smell of books.

We’ve noticed that unlike a lot of writers, you don’t have a personal website and have only recently joined Twitter. Is this a deliberate move, or do you feel that all modern writers need an online presence?

Oh god – it’s just because I haven’t got around it … There are so many other things to do. Like writing the books! And painting my children’s bedrooms. But I must I must I must ….

You’ve got a couple of new books lined up, are you ever nervous about their reception? How does it feel to walk into Waterstones and see your work on the shelf?
Melting the Snow on Hester StreetMelting the Snow on Hester Street – historical fiction set in 1920s Hollywood.  Out March 28th — I am pretty confident about this book. The difficulty isn’t getting bad reviews, it’s getting any reviews at all. Novels – unless they’re written by the heavyweights – tend to get ignored by the book pages.  It’s very, very hard to raise awareness for a novel.

I Don't Know Why She Does ItI Don’t Know Why She Bothers (Guilt Free Motherhood for Thoroughly Modern Women) is out June 4th – This book is incredibly provocative and I think I’m going to get letter bombs as a result. Not looking forward to that at all. But there’s so much sentimental, repressive bullshit surrounding modern motherhood – and as a libertarian and a feminist –  there’s a lot of stuff, I think, which badly needs to be said.

And yes – it is wonderful to see the book for sale. Usually though, you wind up feeling neurotic because – either it’s displayed in the wrong place/or it’s impossible to find… etc etc. The best part is when you first get hold of a finished book. Am watching the post daily for first editions of Melting the Snow on Hester Street — due any time now

What are your writing plans for the future?
I have a novel to begin, which needs to be delivered by Christmas. It would be lovely just to concentrate on that …
Thanks Daisy – we both really appreciate you taking the time for us.  Nolan Parker

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