Well, the last ever signing for the Felsh&Bone Trilogy is over. 50 books sold – a record outside of the now defunct Waterstone’s ‘3 for 2’ deal. Met some cool people – Oliver, James, Kelly’s friend, erm… too tired to compute. Might come out of retirement for another Guildford gig for Sat 25 Feb (day after my dad’s birthday – a signing will offset the price of the train from Manchester to Purley, you see, and train prices due to go up an outrageous 10% in Jan, thieving train overlords!). I’ll be doing special requests, but nothing dirty.
The Flesh & Bone Trilogy
Alright, there weren’t any reindeer, but there were some discerning buyers to whom I’m giving a shout-out: Mark, Cameron, Matt, Leigh, Martin, a young actress, and… old grey cells going. One more signing to go: Guildford tomorrow (21 Dec).
Signing went briskly in Crawley today… until 3pm, at which point the store became deserted. Rain stopped play. Still, I met plenty of decent folk: Dave, Alan, Nick, Jamie and an angelic host of others!
Waterstone’s Redhill tomorrow (20 Dec), then Guildford the day after… and then the end of signings for ye olde Flesh&Bone Trilogy forever more. Knees up, mother Brown! God bless us one and all.
So, 26 was the magic number in Leeds yesterday. Think I should choose it for my next lottery ticket.
Only five more signing events for ye olde Flesh & Bone Trilogy and that’ll be it forever for those books. Ah, the fun times we had. The exotic locations… Milton Keynes, Redhill, Crawley, Windsor, Leeds, Manchester, Oldham, Guildford, Derby, Preston, Watford, Bolton, Warrington, Nottingham, Richmond, Wilmslow, York, and who could forget Hemel Hempstead?
Next stop: Waterstone’s Wigan on Sat 3 Dec 2011, from 11am. Hurrah!
Personally, I’m glad that 3 for 2 is being scrapped. It creates ‘unnatural’ buying patterns that are counter to long-term buying. I see people ignoring the best books in the stores just cos they are not included in a 3 for 2 offer. People buy cr*p instead, and develop a taste for cr*p, which ultimately destroys the higher end market… and the book industry longer-term. 3 for 2 looks good in the short term but it is fatal longer term.
The comment about marketing on the Guardian site is both naive and correct. Basically, meddling with the price of a product is one of the riskiest approaches to marketing going. Now that 3 for 2 has become common and accepted, customers will not like the change and Waterstone’s might find itself in further trouble as a consequence.
It’s tricky and certainly not an exact science. What is clear though: Waterstone’s and the high street are not gonna beat Amazon unless they make their differentiation and ‘value add’ clear and unique. It’s sad to see and watch this slow demise. Allow the cat to cling to life cos all life is valuable or put it out of its suffering. It’s an impossible moral dilemma? Only Waterstone’s can decide how they want to end it. Glory or a slow fade?
After flaming months of technical hassle, Necromancer’s Gambit is now finally available on the Sony e-reader. It was such a pain getting onto the Sony platform cos it has to come via a ‘feeder-platform’. And the feeder I used was a million times more pedantic than Amazon’s Kindle platform. I had to find out what ‘auto-vetting errors’ were and what ‘special first line indenting’ was, then completely reformat my Necromancer’s Gambit file. Sheesh. Oh, and the feeder platform even had precious house-style about the copyright statement used at the start of the book.
If Sony e-reader v. Amazon Kindle is the modern equivalent of VHS v. Beetamax, then Kindle has already won.
Like a plague across the UK, all three titles have now been ordered by stores in Birkenhead, Lowestoft and Folkstone. Ha, ha, ha (evil laugh). Next, the world!
Meanwhile, I’m finally starting to make progress on Chronicles of a Cosmic Warlord. It’s going well, albeit I’ve only done 7 pages so far. Chapter one done by xmas, barring tragic accidents. I’ll have a synopsis up on this site around then too.
But, of course, being an author never pays the bills, so I’ve taken on some part-time teaching with Manchester Met Uni. Training Chinese teacher, ain’t it. Keeps the snarling wolf from the door, even if it only puts him further down the garden path rather than in a nice, comfortable zoo.