Bargain Books. Words Are Cheap.

Who am I? What is this Amazon thing?

I have the honour to write features for a “lifestyle” magazine. Recently the editor edged me into a side room. She confided that the trouble with my writing was that I used words. What people actually wanted was more pictures. In a forced outdoor flash I knew where I had been going wrong. For too long I had been trying to walkie-talkie the ball into the net. It was a Eureka moment almost equal to yesterday when David Beckham met an Amazonian Indian who had never heard of him. Dave – chill! No one at Amazon has ever heard of me and I’ve been lost in their jungle for years. 

It’s politics – it’s our National Y Front.

Okay – here is the deal. I’m having a big push to sell some books. This blog has nothing at all to do with David Beckham. If you read this Dave, get in touch for free copies of all my books. We Londoners need to stick together. After all, I’ve always cheered every swerve of your balls.

My own missions along the Amazon have brought little success. These days I have branched out onto all manner of tributaries. It’s great to see that Dave is getting away from football and doing the same thing.

99c/77p/€0,94 for sexy romance novel SHANNON’S LAW this week only…

Emma Thinx: A word is worth a thousand pictures. It’s your mind.

Copy Of Shannon’s Law Found On Moon

Huston – We have a novel.

The  accent was clearly American, the tone serious. It was 3.26am London time. Not even Sky Media Sales cold call in the night.                                                                                        

“Ma’am – This is NASA Huston. We’ve just recovered a digital cookbook and a copy of your latest novel from the surface of the moon.”
“Wow! Thanks,” I replied, “Is it damaged? The paper quality is quite good.”
“Was that one of your ironic English jokes Ma’am?”
“I’m not sure. Generally I make do with whimsy and sarcasm until at least midday,” I said.
“Do you have any idea how it got there?” asked the voice.
“I sent a copy to Elvis. He’s a big star in the book. I guess he didn’t want it and decided to return it to sender,” I said.
The line went dead. I knew not to try a lame joke so early.  I sighed. Another copy returned without a review!

Between you and me, none of that happened. The purpose of this blog is to find out something about the way blogs now operate. These days I get thousands of blog views. My biggest ever title about bird watching contained the word “Tits.” Until recently nothing I posted on here got anything like the same number of views as my “Tits”. Then recently I posted a feature about video gaming. Suddenly my “Tits” drooped to a poor second. Up to a thousand hits a day can land on my feature “Blinkers And Nosebags.” But why? None of them spam me with undergarment ads or suggestions that I buy their books, visit their blogs, have myself surgically enhanced, help distressed cats etc. 

Since I got into publishing I’ve lost count of the gurus I’ve followed into dark cash sucking caves. The deeper you get into Holetruth mountain, the weaker gets the guiding flame. In the darkness I turn and head back out. I guess there’s a great guru recycling plant somewhere. Do they cross pollinate or form sterile mules? The wisdom used to be that blog views would enhance sales. My experience is that they do not. These days most of my sales are copies I buy myself and send to celebrities in outer space. I just wanna know why thousands of folk look at this stuff! If I knew that I could tele-sales or doorstep them to sell my books. Let’s see if Elvis, the moon, Marc Bolan,NASA and the Queen of England get me some views or sales.

Happy Birthday Your Majesty

Oh yes – it’s the Queen’s 88th birthday. Many of her family are in my lunar landing book Shannon’s Law. I’m thinking of sending her a copy.

Emma thinx: The greatest deception is that the truth can ever be whole.

Sex Discrimination Scandal. Free Books For Sisters

Get yourself tooled up for love

Shannon’s Law has been out there a week. It’s doing OK but something very weird is happening. At least half the readers are men. Are they picking it up because it is sub-categorized in crime? Have the guys always been would-be  romance readers and the e reader allows them to indulge?

I started some research yesterday. Firstly I made contact with Woman’s Hour, a BBC Radio 4 programme for persons of the XX rated chromosome tendency. I’ve asked them if they know about this phenomenon. Their machine replied saying  they probably wouldn’t answer. 

Secondly I went to Walmart and loitered about near the hot romance display to see if I could spot any hairy hunks snapping up copies of “The Billionaire’s Virgin Underpants”. Not a sausage. By the way – what ever happened to Millionaires? I’m not looking but if I were free anything above five hundred million does add at least six inches  to a man. Even a couple of million enhances the eyes and the general charisma.

Thirdly I am looking for any insights from my readers. Does your man rummage in your Kindle while you are at work? Do the guys sit around with their beers before the boxing on TV chatting about Harlequin’s latest hero?

If you’re an XY Chromosapien, do you have a Sheikh’s Marriage Ultimatum hidden in your toolbox?

The problem of course is that in the old days publishers loved to keep us all classified by genre. Any old cow looking over the fence into another field was soon segregated by the gate keeper. It was always something of a myth. Brothers are doing it for themselves. I do love them for it you know. 

In the pursuit of my research here is an unbeatable offer. If you are a woman romance reader and would like to balance up my reviews here is a link to get you a free copy of Shannon’s Law during the next two weeks. Yes Really! If you do a review I’ll love you for ever and send you a free copy of Cop’s Kitchen as well. Come on sisters, don’t let them grab our stuff. They can play with their own tools. If things like cars are a bit of a mystery, all the pictures of things in the book are on my pinterest board. 

Ladies register here for your free review copy 

Emma Thinx: Stick to what you don’t know. 

Should A Girl Spice It Up?

Shannon’s Law is out there. The critics are chewing it over. They seem happy. Some love the sex. Others think there is too much of it. In a way so do I….but I’m not Shannon – a hot blooded girl who has not indulged for a long time. Talking about such a person openly calls for a certain amount of, well, openness. There is no doubt that a lot of interaction between people expresses itself in their sexuality. Why would a writer hold back from a reader what that character did sexually while detailing every other aspect of the story? The answer possibly is to avoid making it seem like a “sex” book that would not succeed without the clinches. I mean, Jane Austen didn’t need that stuff. There weren’t over two and a half million competitors on Kindle in her day (74,000 new titles last month). OK – maybe sex no longer sells? Maybe a true literopathic practitioner wouldn’t take this route. (Yes, Literopathy exists).

About a year ago I learned a sad life lesson by way of this blog. I had been editing an audio book in my day job with Gallo-Romano Media. The story was a period romp filled with bawdy double entendres. As an illustrative joke I put out a post entitled “Are my tits out of proportion to my hole?” In fact it was a feature about my frustration at failing to attract birds to my nesting box. I went on to make some remarks about this old fashioned form of blunt humour.

The first thing that happened was that “friends” disowned me. In some literary circles I was reviled as a filth stained trollop. I felt like the ugly duckling and hid away. Some folk were so disgusted they have not spoken to me since. I thought that was the big lesson to learn. As usual, I was wrong.

Blogs have lost a lot of their penetration in my view. All the same in the clamour for attention and an ever bigger paddle on the Amazon, total views are significant. In my years of blogging I have battered folk with every form of discourse, some of it with photos. I have blurbed and spammed my readers into fixed smile comas. The fact is that the fascinating feature on the great-tits in my bird box has received four times the views of any other topic. All sorts of networks have picked it up. Every day ornithologists from all around the world flock to my site. A few of these viewers may be interested in low matters of the female flesh. Surely not!

There’s a lesson here somewhere. In Shannon’s Law there is hard crime, cars, motorcycles, cricket, romance, social comedy and SEX. If only I’d nailed up a bird-box somewhere.

Stop Press: While the novel does its caterpillar imitation up the sales slope, the companion cookbook, ‘Cop’s Kitchen‘ has streaked to number one in it’s category on Amazon. The idea was that if you bought the novel and reviewed it you got a cookbook. OK guys – My next novel will come free with my aphrodisiac cookbook. It will include a bird watcher’s recipe for frontal area of poultry.

Emma Thinx. You gotta tuck it in before you can let it hang out. 

The Queen Of Hearts, She Made Some Tarts

Queen Tea. She’s a Yorkshire Lass who loves a proper brew. Bloxington Manor in the background.

Well – we launched it. The queen smashed the champagne on the bow and she slid away. So far Shannon’s Law floats on a sea of good reviews. (More please). Soon, I just know, someone will buy a copy. It has to happen.

Mug shot

Thanks so much to all the lovely folk who dropped by. I had tremendous fun making and photographing the scones, buns and sandwiches. I had even more fun chatting about the male hunks who could have displayed on the cover of Shannon’s Law. One day all these guys are gonna rise up and tell us they’re not merely sex objects. My man tells me he’s happy to be seen as a sex subject provided I’m prepared to cooperate on the other side of a transitive verb. I think that means he still desires me. I’ve got a fab editor (Anneli Purchase) who does the hardcore grammar stuff.

Sex Subject.

I asked for your cakes and boy – take a look at these. This is a library! Thanks to Sharon Goodwin of Fiction Addiction Book Tours for sending me her treat. My lovely friend Petra Rovere let me into her poppy seed sensation secrets. What troubles me is that Petra is in Slovenia and knows more English than me. 

Try making an e book to taste better.

Thanks also to Claude Nougat (novelist, linguist, poet, artist, economist, philosopher) for popping in with her ‘vite et bon’ sponge. How does she get time to cook?

With Poppies from Petra.
Claude’s Vite et Bon gateau. 

The whole theme of course was good old fashioned English tea. In the novel, Shannon takes tea with the Earl Spencer as she begins to enter his private world of aristocracy and tradition. He is a troubled and reserved man. Once upon a time he sang Elvis songs and played saxophone. A new sun has come to thaw his blue blood. And yes – it’s a warm red after all.

Whatever the fate of my book I’ve had a lovely time with the launch. I’ve made contact with folk – critics, writers, editors and readers who have helped me all the way. I’ve also had contact with the guys who produce Yorkshire Gold tea. This is not a commercial placement. I adore their tea. It is my day time fuel. OK – after five o’ clock maybe I can slip in the odd vin rouge, or two…… Just like Shannon in my book. 

I went to Bloxington Manor to do some publicity shots. Above is a little link to my tea by the lake.

And that’s a wrap. Shannon’s Law has been a year of my life. I write by hand and it’s a four times edit before it goes to my editor. OK – I know, it needs another edit! Too late, there’s another passion patrol keel on the slipway.

Emma Thinx: Life is a perfect rising cake –  that sticks. 

Shannon’s Law Book Launch Party

It’s launch day. Shannon’s Law is now an item of public discourse. It’s the ball in a touchdown or the cake in a boulanger’s window. The story is of a genteel English lord and a wild child street cop from the de-railed side of the urban tracks. Things start to get cosy when he invites her for tea. He serves sophisticated Earl Grey. She needs a full on proper brew from Yorkshire Gold. She loves his class. He adores her rich satisfying flavour. You kinda get that tingle that it’ll be tea for two in bed some time soon. She’s a strong willed woman. Guess what strength he gives her. 

How else to launch such a steamy tale but with a tea party. There’s gonna be prizes. There’s gonna be music and for sure there’s gonna be tea and cakes. 

On the subject of cakes, I need your recipes. If we get enough, my own publisher – Gallo-Romano Media, will bring out a digital cookbook. All contributors will be credited. The proceeds will all go to the charity the Trussell Trust which organises food banks for needy folk. It is a non denominational Christian organisation which I respect although I have no personal religious faith. So dig out those donuts, roll out those roulades and bung me your buns.

The launch party begins on Facebook at 4pm London time (8am PST, 10am CST,11am EST.) It’s on for four hours and coffee is available throughout too. 

If you can’t make the party there’s prizes to be had here. The draw is on the 7th March so everyone can have a go.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Emma Thinx: You can’t have your cake and eat it. Always bake a spare.

What Links Shirley Bassey, Marilyn Monroe And The Beatles?

Now that’s what a girl calls a bunch of carats

Nearly there now. It’s coming up to 6pm on 27th February 2014 as I pin one of the last items on my Pinterest reveal tour. In six hours Shannon’s Law will be out there. There’s no news of queues anywhere. I’m grateful to chicklitpad for hosting my feature today. The subject is a fabulous necklace. It dates from the 1920’s and is a mix of white and rose diamonds. Nothing too flash then! It’s the sort of thing an earl might give to a countess. But why?And what could such an item stand for?

The word diamond unites so many themes and artists. At first rummage in my grey cells tips out Shirley Bassey singing “Diamonds Are Forever“, Marilyn Monroe singing “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” and the Beatles singing “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds“. 

There’s plenty of gems in Shannon’s Law and they won’t cost the earth.

Emma thinx: Love mines diamonds in a heart of stone.

Shannon In Venice With Tiepolo

To Infinity and beyond. 

There was an old song “It’s almost tomorrow”. My father was a bit of a dancer and he used to waltz around to this song playing on the record player with me standing on his feet. And YES!!! It is almost tomorrow. The great ship Shannon stands on the slipway. Workmen are greasing the rails. The seagulls hold their breath. The Queen is choosing a frock….

My Pinterest reveal tour is nearly over. Today I’m grateful to harliesbooks for hosting my feature on painted ceilings. When Shannon gets to Venice she looks up at the ceiling of a fabulous palazzo on the Grand Canal. The art was painted by the famous Venetian painter, Tiepolo. I have tried to make all the settings of the book “real”. Let’s just say that fact is blended with fiction. The actual painting shown in the photo is from the throne room of the Royal Palace in Madrid. Maybe Tiepolo did an earlier study in Venice or maybe he didn’t…..If he did it’s in the Palazzo Coccolare. The only access is via Shannon’s Law.

Emma thinx: Fiction exists and that’s a fact.

Hatching A Plot

Dodgy focus from ultra long range. Fly my little ones…….

Only one whole day to go. Then Shannon’s Law and Cop’s Kitchen will be out there all alone. Slings and arrows of outrageous fortune will be released. 

There is another world away from books and the market place. Sometimes one is so close to one’s own affairs that the beauty and continuance of this life and time seem no more than scenery. Deep down we know the depth of our human shallowness. We are helpless creatures, vainly bigging ourselves up to confront a universe that does no more than shrug. 

There is a blackbird nest in my hedge. It contains three miracles of beauty. Such eggs existed before there were words for yolk or albumen – or for that matter, any concept of love, vocabulary, gods or even Nature will probably waste them all and the mother will lay again and again. The stronger ones will dominate the weaker. In fact, it’s not that different from incubating a novel. 

Emma thinx: And the last will study the faces of winners. And the winners will see merely a crowd. There are no victories.

Shannon’s Juicy Little Devils

Juicy little devils

As the big day approaches there are only a few remaining items to add to my  Pinterest board. Today I’m appearing on the blog annelisplace. She’s a fantastic editor I can recommend to any of you scribes out there. Also if you like those impossible photos you see in National Geographic  Magazine, check out her stuff here.

One of my lusts is food. I deal with this both in the text of the novel Shannon’s Law and in the accompanying cookbook Cop’s Kitchen. The feature today is about an hors d’oeuvre item served after a cricket match played at the stately home, Bloxington Manor. It’s a really exotic flavour and also a bit of a glistening feast for the eyes. Shannon had never encountered such fancy offerings, but she was never shy about trying something new. 

Emma Thinx: The second bite is with your imagination.