Showing posts from September, 2012

Guest Author: Griselda Gifford

I'm the author of 30 books for children, many of which are now out of print - so I decided to put House of Spies   on Kindle.  It was originally published by Andersen Press and is still selling abroad. This is an exciting story set in World War 2.  Villagers are suspicious that a German couple living in the woods are spies.  After Pippa and her mother have to leave their cottage because of an unexploded bomb - Pippa meets a new friend and they become involved with the mysterious House of Spies in the wood.  The jacket for Kindle was designed by my husband, Jim, as I found it cost a lot to get the original. Recently, I've written an historical novel for young teens ( The Cuckoo's Daughter ) about my great-great grandmother, Louisa,  who was the illegitimate daughter of the Duke of Gloucester and a Lady in Waiting.  It's set in 1799.  I found it hard to blend fact and fiction - did lots of research and read old letters, becoming more and more sorry for Louis

A year already - Some reflections

The trees are turning red, orange and yellow, their fallen leaves making golden carpets on the ground.  I hum Jeff Wayne's 'Forever Autumn' and wonder where summer went. Oh wait - it was on a Wednesday wasn't it? I remember now, I nearly missed it! In less than a week it will be my Birthday, I'm an October baby! Even more momentous though is the fact that a year today I made my very first post on Authors Electric. What a wonderful supportive Group this is, and I feel so happy and privileged to be a part of it.  I've learnt a lot from reading everyone's monthly post, and although I don't profess to be able to pass on the same level of  knowledge that some of the writers here do, I hope my posts over the past year have at least been interesting. click here for link to NaNo In another month it will be National Novel Writing Month again. An insane four weeks of writing furiously with the goal of achieving 50,000 words in thirty days.  

Ten ebooks, so am I half a publisher? by Enid Richemont

It seems that to get classified as a ' publisher', by Waterstone's, rather than a writer, one needs to have at least twenty books out there as ebooks. Well, hey, I've currently got ten out of print books out there as ebooks, and I will shortly be adding more, including some which mainstream publishers rejected, so I might well reach that target some time in the next few months. ...and the tenth one The Enchanted Village So might I be classified as a publisher? No, although my husband, David, might, since he's set up the whole process, and like any good and honest publisher (do they exist?) he loves my work. Unfortunately, personal relationships enter into this, and so you might well - and quite reasonably - think he might be a little prejudiced in my favour. However, eight of these books were published by companies I had no emotional relationships with, and were all very well received and reviewed (the only time I had a bad review was for THE GAME, whi

Writing is just Gardening for the Mind - Andrew Crofts

There’s been a great deal of discussion lately about how writers, (and publishers), can market their books in the same way as mass-market commercial products, all of it leading to disappointment as inevitably as the purchase of a lottery ticket. Most recently there has been the “sock-puppetry” controversy, the most startling element of which is that major publishers have been revealed to be writing glowing Amazon reviews for their own books under false names; (a) is this really surprising? and (b) is this really what publishers mean when they tell authors that their “marketing skills” are one of the reasons why they can do a better job of publishing than we can? I’m wondering if it would be helpful to put forward an analogy for writing that looks less like the marketing plans of Mr. Heinz, Mr. Coca Cola or Mr. Simon Cowell. Imagine that instead of deciding to write a book you decided to create a garden. You might have visited a few stately gardens, either in the flesh or i

A Summer of Very Little Growth

The photo shows me with our this year's beetroot harvest - the whole of it! The carrots did slightly better, I'm pleased to say. We have some green beans. The onion harvest wasn't bad at all. The potatoes were pretty much a disaster... This is no reflection on my partner, Paul, who did most of the work and is an experienced gardener of many years' standing (and kneeling). The fault lay with the weather, and I know that many vegetable gardeners all over the UK this year (and possibly beyond) have had similar crop failures. Thank God that we can afford to buy instead from greengrocers, markets and so on. Although the quality may well be inferior and we'll have to spend more, we won't exactly starve. It's much harder for the farmers and others who grow food for a living... and of course the problems in some places overseas put our disappointments firmly in their place. It's been that sort of summer all round for me. I started full of optimism, wor

Authors Electric Sparking at the Conference

On Sunday September 16 th , I took part in a short talk on e-books at the Society of Authors’ Children’s Writers’ and Illustrators’ Group (CWIG) at their conference in Reading. (And Dennis – it was good to see you in the audience!)           Arriving after a two hour drive, I made immediately for the Ladies’. While I was shut in my cubicle, some other Ladies arrived, chatting together. It was very full on, they said, but very interesting. ‘I enjoyed that talk about websites,’ said one. ‘I shall have to look them up. The one I liked was ‘Dreaming Authors…?  Electrical Authors?’           I shouted out, “That’s us!  Authors Electric! Do Authors Dream of Electric Books! ”           Laughter from the sinks. I adjusted my clothing and emerged issuing business cards with the blog’s address.           That was my first clue that this was going to be a rather successful outing.           Our talk was scheduled for 9am, and my fellow speakers were Gillian McClure, the writer