My latest book–the flash fiction collection Snowflakes and Shivers–comes out tomorrow! Like the collections earlier in the year, it contains short stories that have been here on my blog, this time with a wintry and seasonal theme. But there are also a couple of new stories, unpublished anywhere else. See the details below, and I’d love it if you clicked the tweet thingy, or sent it to your own favourite social media.
And: I’m looking for people to join a cover reveal for Zanzibar’s Rings – late November or early December. If you’d like to reveal my latest book’s cover (it’s out next February), please say so in the comments, or email me.
This is my Insecure Writers Support Group post, in which we share our successes and failures as writers, our insecurities, in fact. Anyone can join in, just sign up at the IWSG Sign-up page, write a blog post on the first Wednesday of the month, and go back to that sign up page to link with everyone else–or a goodly sample. Our host is Alex J Cavanaugh, and his co-hosts for the month are:
Mary Aalgaard http://playoffthepage.com/
Ronel Janse van Vuuren http://www.ronelthemythmaker.com/blog/
Cathrina Constantine http://cathrinaconstantine.blogspot.com
J Lenni Dorner https://jlennidorner.blogspot.com/
and ME! What a terrific set of co-hosts I’m with!
Question of the Month
In your writing, where do you draw the line, with either topics or language?
Thinking of books I’ve not finished this year, I’m most likely to draw the line at abuse, especially with mental health implications, especially if made into ‘thrillers.’ Especially survivors of child abuse (another book came to mind that I thought needed a warning). I don’t mind a bit of fairly explicit sex, as long as it’s in context, and not gratuitous (or bulging at every opportunity- see the Drath review if you need more explanation) or just overdone. And I don’t do graphic violence, especially gory shoot-em-up stuff.
I suppose the same goes for language. I’m unlikely to put a book down at the first swearword, but I do when it gets boring, or if the language is just filthy. (define filthy… well, I suppose it’s personal, like any other dirt)
Update on my book stall
Last month you remember I was preparing for a stall at a Craft and Gift Fair in a town near me. And I promised you the figures!
|Banners & printing||one-off||100|
|Book Stock value||investment inc shipping||750|
|Payment system||Zettle plus dock one off (I don’t think I need the dock after all)||60|
|Table cost||per venue, varies from £30 to £60||35|
|Travel & parking||per venue||10|
|Income||(net of payment fees)|
|Romsey Sep21||9 books sold||54|
I think it’s important to view all this as an investment in your products. So thinking of all those costs except book stock, and averaging it over a year (I’m planning 12 stalls in all) means that I need to cover the table cost + £20. To do that I’d have to sell about 20 books each time. And I already want to get a proper stall table cloth and a card holder rather than use the panels for the cube bookcase.
I’m selling the books at near-retail prices (rounded). That means I can have royalties plus the distribution and retailers costs to myself. It varies from book to book, but I reckon on £2 to £4 profit. The 9 sold probably brought me about £25 income.
So I didn’t cover the cost of the table plus overhead. But asking around afterwards, the regular stallholders said it was very slow, and nobody seemed to have sold much by their standards. So as I was one short of my ‘low’ target, of ten books, I was reasonably content. I did as well as anyone else.
- Move your car once you’ve unloaded the boxes to your table…
- Either bring the cube part-assembled or buy a large cardholder (c£30)
- Iron the tablecloth or buy a stretchy one to fit the table like everyone else uses.
- Check your Zettle is linked to your iPad using the hall’s wifi; it lost it until I reset it, and the first gentleman was kind enough to go and get cash for me (bank opposite the hall) – and he bought two books
- Only one buyer wanted to pay cash. But that does mean needing some change
- The collections are a good way to get people to try your work at low cost
I’m probably going to be in the middle of the hall for some time, as I’m the newbie, and old hands, and regulars who pay a premium for the year, get the better positions. So I’ll probably continue to have two banners back to back (the short stories with the ‘Meet the Author’ tag is behind the Princelings one). It doesn’t look as good on the photos, but I don’t think it matters to buyers.
One browser said as she moved on ‘you need a lady’. I wasn’t sure I’d heard her right, so I asked her to repeat it, and that’s what she said, but I didn’t understand. Chatting to my stall neighbour, neither did she. I woke up next day, and realised: I need a female protagonist. I have two in mind…. must get on with them!
Unexpected Twisty Tales update – the new book is out tomorrow!
Yes, the flash fiction collection now has a nifty series title – Unexpected Twisty Tales. I considered the Menagerie of Unexpected Timely Twisty Tales, but that’s just silly. All the paperbacks of the series can be seen and bought via this page on my blog.
The Seasonal Special is published tomorrow. You can buy the ebook on Pre-sale at Smashwords here right up till midnight California time. If you sign up to my mailing list you get a discount.
Buy Snowflakes and Shivers ebook:SNOWFLAKES AND SHIVERS – Jemima Pett's latest Story Collection! Fantastic beasts leave footprints in the snow; Christmas tree fairies reflect on their lives; snowflakes discover their destiny, and more. Out 7th October #ebook… Click To Tweet