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One of the delights (and downsides) of indie publishing (I’m trying to school myself to call it indie publishing rather than self-publishing) is being responsible for your own marketing.  I find that it’s very mood-based: if I’m feeling optimistic and imaginative, promotion and marketing are great fun, but if I’m feeling a bit low, it’s very hard work.  And no matter the mood, it’s important to remember that marketing is a long game: you can put out feelers and tasters and temptations and hear nothing for weeks – months – and then suddenly something happens.  Today I can report three somethings.

First up, we have the marvellous Richard Tearle.  Richard is a great supporter and promoter of indie writers and publishers, and has a special fondness for historical fiction: some time ago he wrote some terrific reviews of the Sam Plank books, and then he asked me to take part in an interview for his new blog, Slipstream.  The questions were thought-provoking, and the interview has appeared today on Richard’s blog.

Secondly, ages ago – in June – I contacted the webmaster of a site called “Order of Books” and asked for the Sam books to be added.  In essence, people can consult this website to find out about series of books and to get the definitive word about the order of the books in the series.  And today – most unexpectedly – my entry has appeared (although I was born in Brussels, not Germany).  Do go and have a look – it’s a really handy website for those of us who love series (and who wouldn’t want to revisit a beloved character?).

And thirdly, I have solved the mystery of the spike in sales of “Portraits of Pretence” (the fourth – green-covered – Sam book).  For several years now I have been in email contact with a lady in California who teaches an occasional college course on historical fiction.  And in a recent email she mentioned that this month her book club, on her recommendation, is reading “Portraits”.  So thank you, Claire and friends in California: that’s eleven copies on the tally!

(And – too exciting – as I write this, I have an eared cocked for the doorbell: the proof paper copy of “Heir Apparent” is being delivered this afternoon.  If all is well, I might even be pressing that big red Publish button a few days early…)