It’s something of a cliché but life really is full of surprises, not to mention some truly strange coincidences.
I’m back in the UK now. Part of the reason I’m home is to help mum sort out the house she’s just moved from. In one of the many cardboard boxes that came out of the attic I found my father’s writing archive. Dad was an English teacher so he liked words. Turns out he enjoyed various forms of writing too. The box contained several short stories, many poems and other writing, some of which he’d submitted to magazines and had published. My dad was a published author and I didn’t know the half of it. I also found a bound handwritten manuscript of a novel he wrote but didn’t seem to take any further than that. (So that’s where I got it from.)
The strange coincidence: On the morning of the day I got my hands on dad’s writing archive I received an offer from a publisher for a three book deal. Bloodhound Books want to take on my two existing Booker and Cash novels and the third in that series, which is written but not published yet. Naturally, I am absolutely thrilled to have a publisher interested enough in my writing to approach me regarding collaboration. But it’s the coincidence of the two events on the same day that overtook me.
E-books and ereaders have contributed to a period of rapid change in the book publishing industry. Bloodhound Books are at the forefront of what I see as a shift in the traditional landscape. Digital publishing is big business and it’s growing. There are more self-published authors writing more books than ever before. On our own we are only so many voices in the wind. As a CWAP, if you don’t have the time or energy or know-how for the self-promotion side of self-publishing you will likely severely limit the chances of growing an audience for your work. Bloodhound Books can address that for the self-published author by working collaboratively with them to, hopefully, everyone’s benefit.
For several months Bloodhound Books have been steadily recruiting self-published authors who have proved through their writing that they are worthy of greater attention. The growing list of Bloodhound’s stable of writers is really quite impressive. (See here http://www.bloodhoundbooks.com/authors/) It’s a list that I am very proud and honoured to be asked to join.
While Bloodhound Books are primarily concerned with the digital e-book market they do also produce physical copies of books. There are currently no physical copies of any of my books. I could have made them available through Amazon’s print on demand service at any time, however, I made a conscious decision at the beginning of my CWAP adventure that if my books ever came into existence as physical objects I would not be the one to commission them. I had my reasons.
I am a book lover. I can’t think of many things that will give me greater pleasure than to hold a physical copy of a book I’ve written, something I didn’t organise the printing of. It’s one of the core dreams that I’ve had from the beginning. I’ll wager it’s one of the things just about every budding author wants when they first put pen to paper or finger to qwerty keyboard.
I’m looking forward to working with Bloodhound in the coming months and seeing what they can do for Booker and Cash. I couldn’t be happier that Booker and Cash is the series to get picked up. They are the pairing that mean the most to me and the stories are set on Romney Marsh, the place where I was born and bred and have returned to live after several years abroad. Booker and Cash are also the series that I’m determined to write more books in. Whether they will prove to be books that Bloodhound will want to take on I shall have to see, but for now I’m very happy with this week’s developments.
PS: Is dad’s novel any good? I wish I could say, but I can’t read his bloody writing.