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I think that the hardest thing about self-publishing is not the writing, or even the publishing – but the promoting.  Although I have run my own business for many years, it has succeeded through word of mouth rather than thanks to any spectacular marketing efforts on my part, and so I do struggle when it comes to thinking of ways to promote Plank.  But one thing I have found is that the more effort you put in, the more people are willing to help you.

For instance, back in September last year I took part in a “meet the local authors” event at our main city library.  I arrived early, smiled a bit manically for several hours, and stayed to help tidy up.  Over four hours I sold eight books and (the real delight) was able to talk about Sam and Martha to lots of people.  I also told the lovely organiser that any time she wants to trot out a local author to talk about writing or police history or Regency times or self-publishing, I’d be delighted to be involved.

Well, I live in an area of Cambridge called Chesterton, and every June we have a Chesterton Festival.  When I saw the 2015 festival being advertised, I contacted my nice library lady and suggested that it might be fun to hold a talk at our local branch library here in Chesterton.  And because I made the effort to suggest it, and said that I would talk for free, and because it brings people into the library, she thought that it would work.  And so here is my little advert in the festival flyer – top-right of page 3.  I don’t expect a huge audience, but I shall go along with a stack of books to sell and the notes on self-publishing that the ladies of the WI enjoyed, and see how it goes.  And if no-one turns up, the joy of a library is that I shall have plenty to read while I wait.

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