Monday, 22 December 2014

Christmas secrets...

One Christmas when we were children, my sister and I unknowingly bought each other the same Christmas present. When we opened them up on Christmas morning everyone thought it a great hoot that we'd both had the same idea (an oil painting-by-numbers kit, in case you're wondering!) but I remember feeling disappointed without understanding why, as I was quite happy to have a painting kit for myself.

It's only now as I think back that it must have been the familiarity of the present which somehow took the edge off the element of the 'secret surprise' which has always been an exciting part of Christmas. I think it must be the mystery writer in me!

This month, Jo Barton, on her book-blog Jaffareadstoo, has invited a number of authors to share their memories, secrets and favourite things about Christmas. I was delighted to be asked to join in the fun.

So why not drop in on her blog, read about my Christmas thoughts and check out the other authors and their books at the same time. There are give-aways too, including a copy of The Indelible Stain.

Meanwhile, let me take the opportunity to wish you all  
A Merry Christmas

and a

Happy New Year

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Mentioned in dispatches

It was the highlight of a particularly difficult week (husband/heart bypass/complications/long story) when I found out that The Indelible Stain was one of the books chosen for the Editor's Choice in The Bookseller's first ever Independent Author Review.

It was thanks to fellow author Alison Morton that I heard the news and learnt that her book Successio had also been listed, as well as those of three other SilverWood authors - Lily Forbes's memoir Growing Up Under the Mango Tree , Elisabeth Marrion's historical novel Liverpool Connection and Thomas Saunders's autobiography Getting a Life

In the introduction to her review, Caroline Sanderson said the 18 books she'd chosen represented some of the best available, praised the quality of editing and presentation, and declared them to be "written with a flair equal to anything on the list of a traditional publishing house".

In the subsequent #FutureChat on Twitter, the subject of professionalism amongst indie authors was discussed and the importance of producing a quality book.

In the comments afterwards, author Jane Steen made the point that it would be nice to get to the stage where books in general could be judged as "good books" without the need to make the distinction between "trad" and "indie".

I'm sure that day will come eventually. After all, as Alison Morton said during the chat, it's readers who ultimately are the judges. Invariably they care little about which publishing camp the book comes from, so long as they've enjoyed reading it!

(P.S. And in case you're wondering - sorted/on the mend/home soon)