Something to cheer about

My trip down town yesterday was very productive. I actually got a date for the launch Of “Penny and the Poorly Parrot.” I shall be in the Lido Cafe on Worthing seafront from 11am to 1pm on Wednesday 2nd June, come rain or shine!

I am now starting to design more posters. It is over a year since we were able to do face to face book signings but when I was in town it looked almost like it used to look on market days. The sun was out, the big wheel was operating and people looked happy, for a change. The posters won’t come out on wordpress so I’ve put the wheel on instead.

Whether anyone will be ready to purchase little paperbacks when the kids would rather play on the mechanical toys is yet to be determined!



I had some encouraging news from my website provider today. They said more people were looking at them. I have two now, ( which is also and ( which wasn’t getting views so I was going to close it) I think maybe the little postcards that I distributed locally might have made people look me up. I still have not had any orders for the original Penny book but I will have some with me when I launch Penny and the Poorly Parrot.

The exciting thing that happened today was that I chose a cover for the third book. I had searched on Shutterstock for one that matched the first two and didn’t think any of my choices would work but my designer has used the one by the artist that we used for the first two backgrounds and it is perfect. It’s too soon to show you as it is planned as an autumn release but it stopped me worrying that I would never find one.

It’s a strange feeling, not having a book on the go but I need to concentrate on marketing the ones I have for sale. Lets hope we have seen the last of lockdowns.

Poster ready

I have just designed a poster for the place that said they MIGHT let me launch my book there. I haven’t put times or prices on but they want me to confirm next week which doesn’t give me much time as I wanted to do it on June 2nd. The poster wouldn’t load so I’ve put the cover on again.

I’d like to laminate it but haven’t got a laminator.

The dentist wants me to have a micro operation on the same day and I said it wasn’t convenient. It’s not only inconvenient I don’t think I want it at all but I got dire warnings of what might happen if I leave the root infected. The thought of someone drilling into the top jaw is really frightening and wasn’t helped by the clinic looking so sterile. I’ve never been anywhere so unfriendly. The whole place was white, with grey chairs and a strange echo. White walls in the waiting room, the corridors and the surgery. It felt like something from a science fiction film.

I looked up reviews and the customers seem satisfied. Now I have to decide whether to invest nearly £800 in a gum that doesn’t hurt. I couldn’t see anything wrong on the xray but the dentist said it needed doing. Who am I to argue?


The text of the third Penny book is nearly finished and ready for proof reading but the illustrations are done by a dear friend and when she sees what is required I don’t think I’ll be very popular.

Remember Heath Robinson? He designed all sorts of weird contraptions and complicated machines. Well, there’s one like that in my story. It’s a cross between a bike, a helicopter and a balloon and even has an attached barrel at one stage!

I tried to sketch it to help her but I need to go out in the shed and check how a bicyle works, first. Maybe if it’s a fantasy it won’t have to look as if it could work – after all, there’s plenty of magic in the enchanted forest!

It’s a family birthday tomorrow and I have booked an outside table. Now they say it’s going to be windy and rain. I made a chocolate cake although we are supposed to be trying to slim. Birthday without a cake just doesn’t seem right.

Another Penny Book

I have finished the first draft of the third Penny book and sent it to the illustrator.

I was really happy this morning as the flyers for Penny1 were ready so I picked them up and began to distribute them locally. I need to sell eight more books to make the flyers worthwhile.

If the shop I saw yesterday are agreeable I should be able to have a launch of Book2 at half term.

Of course the dream is to see all three books together in hardback but I would need to contact a traditional publisher for that to happen.

Now to take off my editor hat and replace it with the marketing one!

Penny and the Poorly Parrot

I now have a publication date for the second Penny book in June, but the copies arrived today.

I was out promoting the first book so I had better put them away somewhere, although, as they were inspired by the pandemic, I guess the sooner I get review copies out, the better.

I am still waiting for a cover image as I want to do some flyers but the print shop will be happy to sell them for me so at least I have one outlet other than amazon.

I’ll try to put a photo on, but my pictures don’t always come out on the computer.

Promoting Penny.

I have found a helpful shop that might be able to sell some more Penny Down the Drain books, if I give them some advertising material. So far I have only managed a couple of posters. I’m so useless on the computer I can’t get a photo to turn round and I don’t want it on its side. I can do it when I want to print it but there doesn’t seem to be an option before that.

I got round it by landscaping the picture and the text but they are on different pieces of paper. Every time I tried to get them on the same sheet either they printed over themselves or on the back. It needs someone who understands mathematics. I bet if I did it again it would come out upside down!

I’m going to risk going into town tomorrow, hoping that there won’t be too many queues. We changed supermarkets last month and saved £20 each shop but the stuff went off quicker and I missed the soup I usually buy so we returned to our local store today. Funny how you get used to where everything is! We have been elsewhere three times and I still can’t find my way around. not only that, they don’t have bags for the fresh vegetables. They want us to buy in bulk. Anyone want some carrots?

Ready for the roof.

I can’t concentrate on writing or marketing at present as the house is surrounded by scaffolding and the workmen threaten to start at 7.30am tomorrow when I usually get up at 8.30! ( after a leisurely read with a cup of tea)

They turned up this morning with covering for the loft and seemed surprised that we had both a ladder and a light. Then, this afternoon a portable toilet arrived. As I believe there are eight of them I guess that is a good idea, especially during covid.

The answer machine on the phone has died but I still have my mobile. If only someone would ring and say they think they have found a suitable dog. Hubby is searching online again but I told him to wait until next week when the shops open up and people go back to work!

Gosh, I’m so fed up with scams and unwanted calls. I don’t reply until someone talks on the phone now so I can tell if it is a recording. I just had one from a firm I use wanting me to join something else. I rang off. If I can get stuff from shops I will stop sending away. It is just too annoying. What if I was having a nap? I’ll need one if I have to get up at seven o’clock.

I’m reading a Lee Child book. He doesn’t need reviews, such a change from the poor quality stuff I have been stuck with from the charity shop. Difficult to put down – no wonder he’s so popular.

Another launch

It is almost impossible to get enthusiastic about relaunching a book that was written before Christmas but I’m going to try.

If I can get people hooked on the first Penny book they might like to read the next one (or two) I can’t launch number two before I get more readers for number one. Apparently asking libraries and schools if you can do a reading is a good idea for children’s books. I need to be sure when they are properly and safely open. Although the cover of Penny Down the Drain was of the Magic Kingdom it probably should have had Penny in it – more dramatic, when I was just looking for colour. We live and learn. I am inviting readers to preorder Penny and the Poorly Parrot and my son says that will show if anyone liked the first book! I’m aiming for June 2nd so I need to get the earlier book launched before then. Getting to April 12th seems so slow. I must try to cheer up!

Shutterstock adventures

I wanted to start the week with something positive but all I have been doing is researching images on shutterstock. I shouldn’t be looking for a cover for book 3 yet as it isn’t even on the computer. I got hooked on scrolling through possible choices, taking different subjects from the text and seeing if they had images that matched the first two books.

What I should be doing is getting the text onto the laptop but I know it needs a lot of work and I just wasn’t ready. Instead I downloaded all the drawings of book 2 that my illustrator had done and sent them to my book designer, with an idea of which page they should appear on.

I know my way of working is very old fashioned, but so am I. I do what I can, send a word document and the designer makes it into a book and gets it printed. I did put one story on kindle but it didn’t seem to take off so I’ll stick to the method I understand. If I sold all the books I would break even but I have about 20 of each one left so I’m working at a loss. It’s a good job it is my only luxury.

Not much can top the feeing of satisfaction when you have a copy of a book you have written in your hand.