Maybe my confidence in the Plank books is growing, or maybe I’m becoming less shy as I age, but either way I am being much more “out there” with “Worm in the Blossom” than I was with “Fatal Forgery” or even “The Man in the Canary Waistcoat”. As I told you the other day I now have one proper printed copy of “Worm” in my fevered possession. It’s a proof copy, but the only giveaway is that it says PROOF in big black letters on the last page – from the outside it looks like a proper copy. And I keep it in my bag at all times, pulling it out to show friends, colleagues, booksellers and other random people I vaguely know – such as the lady running the chocolate shop where I spend much of my disposable income.
The exciting outcome is that I actually have firm pre-orders: ten copies for one bookshop, five for another, and one for a colleague.
One little tip for anyone else who sells books directly, as I do – perhaps at library speaking events or village fairs. You don’t want people handling the stock, so you need to sacrifice one or two copies for potential buyers to leaf through. Originally I put stickers on these saying “Proof copy”, but when someone said they they liked it and would buy one “when the book actually comes out”, I realised that it was giving the wrong impression – that the book was only at the proofing stage. So now my stickers on the mauled books say “Author’s copy”, and that works much better.