A bookish night out

By 27th February 2020Publishing

Let me introduce you to my newest book.

Last night I went to a talk organised by our local independent bookstore Rossiters. William Fotheringham was promoting his latest book ‘The Greatest The times and life of Beryl Burton’

If you like books I highly recommend events like these, especially if the subject is something you are also interested in. It’s not only an interesting evening, but we were offered a drink, so for £5 very good value. Of course, they hope you will buy the book and I did; but you don’t have to, although it’s a shame not to take advantage of the generous discount.

The cheap night out aside, I was in some sort of heaven! I am an unlikely, but very keen competitor in local club time trials, so to hear the story of the most phenomenal female cyclist, who competed for 25 years at the top level was gripping. I’m passionate about publishing too and was thrilled to find out more about William’s publishing journey.

William is a prolific author in the cycling biography genre. He used to publish with Random House. However, it turns out that the imprint he used to publish under is no longer and the other imprints were not interested in publishing a book about Beryl Burton. Nevertheless, William felt that telling her story was important and decided to try the self-publishing route. He used a local book packager, who essentially organised the editing, typesetting and printing process. The marketing was up to William.

So how is William finding self-publishing? He enjoyed the process and found it straight forward. He had control over marketing and plans to carry on for longer, so he is hoping for a steadier and longer sales period. On the downside the marketing is hard work and the initial sales are lower.

I also had a great conversation with Rusty of Rossiters about the self-publishing phenomena, and how it’s the bane of publishing houses, but I think that is the subject of another post. I left with his question ringing in my ears ‘What will the classics of this age be like?’ Any ideas?

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