A Load of CWAP

On identity. Most of us want to belong to a group of some sort. We want to be part of a bigger body – social or business – with other like-minded souls. The reasons are myriad.

Since I have been self-publishing my books, I have given occasional thought to the group that I now consider myself belonging to: people who write crime fiction books and self-publish them.

One of the first and, arguably, most important early steps in the formation of a group is the label given to it. Catchy titles and clever acronyms abound.

I used to refer to myself as a self-publisher, but that seems out of vogue these days, and the term is oft tainted with something that will lead a lot of people to treat it and anyone who claims to be ‘it’ with disdain.

I recently moved on to referring to myself as an ‘indie’. But I find this term often needs explaining and clarification – people don’t always get it because it’s a bit vague. I realised I needed something different, something more precise, something accurate and unequivocal.

Sitting at breakfast in my local cafe this morning, I was struck with an idea. I think it must be a good one because it caused me to choke on my simit.

What am I? I am a crime writing author publisher. I am a CWAP.

What really tickled me about this epiphany was when my train of thought steamed ahead and took me to a place in the future where I am attending a festival dedicated to writers of crime fiction and who self-publish their work. (It will come. I hope I’m alive to see it. There are many brilliant self-published writers of crime fiction out there right now who could, given the right circumstances, come together to put on a festival that would be a serious contemporary for any of the others that take place across the UK. I have no doubt about that.)

But what really tickled me about this idea would be the hope that the label Crime Writing Author Publisher could be universally adopted by those involved. Our identity. Our social/professional group tag.

But what really, really, tickled me about this was the idea that the conference/festival could be called A Load of CWAP and that people would book and pay for tickets for A Load of CWAP. That posters and flyers and media articles would all be informing the public about A Load of CWAP.

Brothers and sisters let us join together. Let us stand as one united body. Lets each and every one of us be proud to be a CWAP.

10 thoughts on “A Load of CWAP

  1. Good Morning, Oliver!

    Don’t forget that you have quite an American audience; therefore, CWAP will need to be an international organization. Perhaps you could have “cons” each year in difference places to accommodate the many fans – like the Bouchercon. I would love to attend the inaugural event!

    Best to you, Dianne

    • Hi Dianne
      Thanks for your encouraging comment regarding the concept of CWAP. I would be more than happy to visit the US to tour and open the reading public’s eyes to my CWAP side. I’ll be sure to let you know when I’ve been booked. 🙂
      Best wishes, as always.

  2. Excellent blog Oliver and an excellent acronym, it really made me laugh. Funny because I was chatting to an American over here the other day, (there are a lot of them in Saint Louis) about abbreviations and he said you mean acronyms. I tried to explain that if you couldn’t say it as a word, such as NATO, then it wasn’t an acronym and FBI was just an abbreviation. In not so many words, he was trying to tell me that I was talking bollocks, except he didn’t know what bollocks were.
    Decades ago my father told me a funny story. An English sailor landed in New York, he’d been on his ship for weeks and was dying for some raunchy sex. He saw an American on the dockside and asked where he could get some action. He replied “Go straight down the HW, across the GB into the IR, up to the BW and see the SQ she’ll give you a great time.” “Hold on, I’m new here and I don’t understand you.” said the Englishman. “Oh it’s easy” replied the Yank, “Go down the HW, that’s the highway, across the GB, that’s the great bridge, into the IR, that’s the Indian reservation, up to the BW, that’s the big wigwam and see the SQ, she’s the squaw.” “Great.” said the Brit.
    A week later, back at the docks, the Yank saw the Englishman on crutches and all bandaged up. “What the hell happened to you?” said the Yank. “Well I went down the HW, across the GB, into the IR, up to the BW and saw the SQ, but after 5 minutes the FBI came in!” “The Federal Bureau of Investigation?” Asked the Yank.
    “No, a f*cking big Indian!”
    Hopefully, I’ll get round to starting your book this week, I haven’t read for weeks now. I’ll let you know how it goes. Cheers, Russell.

    • Hi Russell
      Thanks for your comment. It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one who found this funny. The possibility for jokes is… maybe not endless. But here’s one: what do you call three crime writing author publishers lying on top of one another? A pile of CWAP. Boom, boom.
      I enjoyed your joke. Thanks for sharing. Still looking forward to your (and your wife’s) feedback on #6. I think you’ll like this one. 🙂
      Best wishes.

  3. Hi Oliver,
    Always thought you were full of it 🙂 Loved Russell’s joke, though, but am wondering if anyone has tried explaining to an American the difference between bollocks and dog’s bollocks. BTW, I’m half way through R&M 6 and thoroughly enjoying it. Long live CWAP, that’s what I say.

    • Hi Pat
      You’re sounding like my ex-wife 🙂
      Good to know you’re enjoying #6. Thanks for saying. Do Americans even use the word bollocks? Dogs or otherwise?
      Best wishes
      (Don’t forget you’re a CWAP now, too 🙂

  4. Hi Oliver,
    No, I don’t think they do, they use the word cahones, I believe.
    Glad you put an ‘a’ before CWAP though: might have got the wrong end of the stick 🙂 As for sounding like you ex, is she a nice, sweet, grey-haired old lady who swears a lot?
    BTW – only 30% more to go of R&M 6 and honestly think it’s your best yet.

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