‘Bringing Billie Back’…

So, I’ve finally decided on the title of the new book.  ‘Bringing Billie Back’ is a romantic comedy due out in December and will be available via Amazon, iTunes, GooglePlay, Kobo and Nook.  Plus, I’ll be selling it via my website too.

If you’d like to join the mailing list, please click here to sign up and you’ll be the first to know when it’s released.  Plus, there will be other news, events and competitions coming up too.  In particular, my mailing list friends will be first to be offered the chance of a free iBook in exchange for a review…  So, please sign up if interested and also share with your family and friends if you think they might enjoy the book.  Circle Cafe book club poster

It’s a really exciting time and I can’t wait to ‘give birth’ to it.  All of the characters have been locked up in my head for so long and are bursting to break free.  I’ve a talk at the Northampton Circle Cafe Book Club on the 27th November at 7:30pm and it would be great to see lots of people there.  I might have the book cover ready to share that night – I’ve seen the first draft and it’s just how I’d hoped it would be.
And I’ll hopefully be returning to MKFM to talk to the lovely Nancy on a Sunday in December – I’ll update my blog, website and Facebook page as soon as I’ve a date.

I’m off now as it’s quite difficult typing this tonight due to the fact our teenage daughter is watching a music awards event on TV and squeals each time the Vamps appear…

Enjoy the remainder of the weekend!

Penny

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Apologies to all the other eBook platforms…

Greetings from my sofa in Northamptonshire, UK…

I hereby make a formal apology to quite a few of the eBook platforms other than Kindle, but just as fab, as I’ve totally neglected them.  And, have neglected their readers too.

Well, not totally, as I’ve always had the links to my books published through iBooks, Kobo, Nook and Google play on my website.  But, whenever I’ve posted about ‘Friendship, Love and Apple Tea’ on Facebook and Twitter, I’ve only ever put the links to my Kindle book.

Why?  Well, I have absolutely no idea and hadn’t realised until today when I saw the light… I was driving around in the beautiful Bedfordshire countryside, on my way to an appointment, merrily listening to an interview during a brill Joanna Penn podcast.  I was smugly doing the ‘ooh, I do that,’  ‘ummm, I’ve thought about doing that’ and then ‘What?? I don’t do that!’  Yes,  I was hit with the realisation that I, like many other authors, am guilty of treating my Kindle eBook as my favourite child.

Yes, I admit my eBook has not sold as well on the other platforms as it has on Amazon Kindle, but that’s possibly because I haven’t promoted it as much.  The other platforms are offering self-publishers such a great deal, just as much as Kindle, and so today I will turn over a new leaf –  I’m going to start promoting them more (and my own books at the same time, obviously… well hey, I’m an Indie Author, it’s part of my job description!)

So, first of all, if any of you reading this has read my book on one of those platforms, could I ask a teeny favour (if you’d be so kind)… could you leave a review please?  I haven’t received as many reviews on those platforms;  in fact, it’s only my Google play and Kobo readers that have posted reviews (a total of 20) compared to the 79 on Amazon (Thank you to all that leave feedback, it is so much appreciated and makes a huge difference to an author).  And secondly, any comments or thoughts about the other platforms, either as a reader or author, I’d very much like to hear them.

Now, here’s the links to my book, not only to promote it but to hopefully encourage more readers to use these platforms which offer a great experience .. and I promise that my next novel due at the end of the year will be promoted fairly amongst all eBook platforms.  Honest…

Kobo |  Google play | iBooks  |  Nook

‘A day at the Circus’, by Penny Canvin aged 8…

My parents have had a rough couple of weeks.  They had a flood in their lounge caused by a burst pipe under the floor, resulting in the whole carpet being lifted up and no heating since it happened.  They still won’t have any warmth in the house for at least two more weeks as they’re waiting for the system to be replaced.   So my Dad has been up in the loft to clear it ready for the work to commence and one of the things he retrieved was a cardboard box which contains old school books that my brother and I had brought home a long, long time ago.

Excitedly, my daughter and I went through it to see what I was like at that young age.  What type of pictures did I draw?  How was my spelling?  But, more importantly for me, what was my storytelling like then?  Would I find signs that I’d one day be a writer?   Well, there was never any doubt that my imagination has always been vivid, and my books proved that.  And I’ll admit that I can over-exaggerate things sometimes…  But I never knew quite how much.

So, here it is… the proof.  Penny Canvin aged 8 was asked, along with her classmates, to write about what she did at the weekend.  My best friend Wendy and I had both gone to a travelling circus which had come to our village. In those days, a circus had clowns and trapeze artists but also live, wild animals performing (yes, i know, but it was ‘normal’ back in those days).  So, we both wrote about our day at the circus.

Wendy’s version:  Wendy wrote about how we went to the circus, queued for 55 minutes and watched the ringmaster and the lions.  A nice story, full of truth, and most probably in her beautiful neat handwriting accompanied with a brill illustration (not that I’m jealous or anything).

Here’s my actual written account of the day.  What the teacher must have thought I have no idea…:

One day I heard my mum and dad say ‘We shall take Penny to the circus’.  So I asked if Wendy could come and they said yes.  We went to my friend’s but her mum said ‘no, you dare take Wendy to the circus, she is mental’. (Now, this is the first untruth as Wendy is most definitely not, or ever has been, ‘mental’.)

‘No she’s not’, I said.  

‘Ok’, said her mum Liz and we went to the car holding hands.  But my parents and brother had been sick so they went home and we went by ourselves to the circus.  

We went inside the tent and got a seat.  The circus began.  The Ringmaster said ‘Ladies and Gentleman, Boys and Girls, we shall now have the clowns.’  The funny clowns came on and we started to laugh.  They threw apple pies (I’m pretty sure these would have been custard pies, but let’s not get picky) at each other and went off.  The Ringmaster came in and said ‘A dreadful thing has happened.  A man has put some stuff in the drinks and people have fainted.’  All the people let out a big scream and ran out of the tent expect for me and Wendy.  

‘I think I know who it is that put stuff into the drinks’, I said.  

‘Who?’ asked Wendy.  

‘Listen,’ I said, ‘if the clowns were in the ring and the other people were getting ready, it was the Ringmaster who must have done it’.  We shouted at the Ringmaster, ‘Come here!  You killed the people.’  (Not quite sure how it went from people fainting to being killed)

‘OK, I give up’, he said, ‘I killed them.’ Then I heard Wendy let out a big scream.  The lions were out and we ran out of the tent and became heroes (?) but the Ringmaster was killed.  We put the lions into the cages.  

The end.

Never have a tango with an Eskimo…

I’ve no idea if the title is correct but this is a song I heard yesterday on a Xmas CD when out in the car with our daughter, and I can’t get it out of my head… I mean to say, what does it have to do with Christmas other than Eskimos being in the snow and cold?  And why wouldn’t I want to tango with one?  If an Eskimo ever asks me to, I will most definitely tango with him/her and shall be proud of it.  In fact I may go and start a flashmob dance with loads of Eskimos and non-Eskimos.  Let me know if you’re in…

Pressies are wrapped (eventually).  Actually they were not all bought until yesterday lunchtime.  We had a Xmas dinner last night as we’re out on Xmas Day to family.  We had a duck for a change.  It provided enough meat to feed one of us, must have been the skinniest duck ever, a healthy one, probably went jogging.   But it was very nice indeed.

So we’re tracking Santa via Norad and will be visiting the pantomime after a festive meal.  Well, tapas.  But any meal can be festive when its accompanied by a large glass of wine. Then we’ll sprinkle the reindeer food on the front lawn (haven’t bought any this year so will making some with my porridge and glitter, I hope no reindeers actually eat it) and will be off to bed, ready to be woken at 6am.  Now our daughter is 13 we’ve put a curfew on her where she’s not allowed out of her bed on Xmas morning until 6am.  Actually, am wondering if I can move it on another hour till 7am… might give it a try.

Thank you, dear readers, for giving me the best year ever with all your support for the launch of my first book.  It’s been fab.  Working on the second one, struggling a little as the character is very serious and it’s not something that comes naturally to me… so it will involve lots of research and the study of serious people who don’t smile very much.

Merry Christmas, and have a good one.  And, if you’ve bought duck for the Xmas Day meal tomorrow, make sure you’ve a lasagne or something in the freezer as a back up, and make lots of potatoes to go with it.

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Want a freebie taster? First three chapters available for download…

Well, what a week!  Lots happening in terms of ‘Friendship, Love and Apple Tea’.  I’ve a couple of Library events coming up (click here for more info…) and sales have been fantastic!  Thank you to everyone that’s bought a copy, and for the feedback that so many of you have submitted.

If you’re unsure whether to buy, I have a cheeky 3 chapter freebie you can download as a PDF… and, if you like it, then please check out my books page on my website for details.  Enjoy!

As gift jpeg

Stuck on Xmas Pressie Ideas…?

Apparently, Christmas is just around the corner.  I know this because our 13 year old daughter mentions it most days.  Actually, every day.   And, we’ve watched ‘The Muppet Christmas Carol’ already, a family tradition on the 1st November each year.  So…I’m going to have to start thinking about lists.  Lists of things to do, things to prepare and things to buy.

Things to buy… yes, presents.  And, I’m hopeless and struggle to think of what to get.  Now…let’s imagine you have a friend, relative, acquaintance etc, who enjoys reading.  Not just reading but, in particular, reading Chick-Lit/Romantic Comedy/Holiday Light-Read type books, what could be better than a pretty paperback called ‘Friendship, Love and Apple Tea’??

OK, I’m not very good at this sales stuff – that was my feeble attempt at marketing my book.  But, in seriousness, we now have the packaging, P&P pricing etc and are good to go re sending out in time for Christmas.

So, if you would like a paperback (signed if requested), then please do get in touch.  Send me a message with your email address, and I’ll mail you back with details for payment etc.  It’s cheaper to buy from me direct than it is from Amazon (to the UK, not sure re rest of the world due to postage).  £5.99 +P&P (1st Class £2.15, 2nd Class £1.98).

I’ll hopefully be around some of the local libraries etc in the next month (Towcester is confirmed on the 29th November) and so you could also grab a copy there too and it will save you the postage fee.

Right, off to do ‘those’ lists…

x

As gift jpeg

Thoughts on Self-Publishing

What’s your thoughts on self-publishing and the writers who do such a thing…?

There I was, really happy that a) I’d written a whole novel  b) I’d found a way to share it with the world  and c) people are reading it and leaving reviews.  And then I came across a forum tonight where someone has burst my bubble that I’d quite happily found myself floating around in.

In response to someone asking about giving ‘Author Talks’ in schools, he replied:  I’m a qualified teacher, and I wouldn’t let a self-published author within a mile of any school I taught in. Quite apart from the oily self-promotion aspect, I don’t think it’s appropriate to teach children to aspire to mediocrity. “Hey kids, write a book, and then stick it on Kindle when no one wants to publish it.”

Now, I’ve no idea if anyone wants to publish my book or not – I never approached an agent or publisher, I just wanted to write a book and publish it.  But, I’m a great believer in encouraging children to read and to write.  And, if they faced the barrier of an agent/publisher rejecting their work, I’d want to show them that they can still achieve their dream, no matter what.

Is this aspiring to ‘mediocrity’?  I’m offended by that comment, on behalf of the children out there who have enough knocks in life and believe they’re not good enough.  Children need to be motivated, encouraged, given options in life.  Would someone telling them about self-publishing harm them in some way??

Ooh, bit cross…what’s your thoughts on this?

Penny

Book Launch 25th October 2014

Thank you to everyone who came along to the Book Launch on Saturday 25th October – it was a great night and I’m so grateful to everyone who supported me.  Still getting used to being asked to sign my book – but lots of books sold, which was fantastic!   The evening was very informal, some of the visitors stayed a short while, whilst others took advantage of the wonderful food that Ali and his team provide at the Med Grill – if you haven’t been there before, please do, it’s on the V4 near to Furzton in Milton Keynes.

What I loved the most was the sound of chatting and laughing – with the slide show playing photographs of Turkey, the sound of Turkish music and the smell of Turkish cuisine, the atmosphere really did make me think I was in Marmaris.  And, each one of the photos playing in the background inspired the story and appears in some way throughout the book.

So, here’s some photos of the night – the book is available as paperback either through me directly, or via Amazon, and the e-book is still selling really well throughout the different platforms – go to www.pennycanvin.com for more info.

Thanks everyone, and here’s to the next one!

Penny

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Book Launch Book Launch 2 Mini-Me getting ready A full house Team 'Canvin/Mayhew' Friends1 Getting ready School friends! Heather and I Guests arriving The Mayhews are ready... Drinking apple tea

6 hours until the Book Launch event…

Well, it’s here.  The day of the book launch has arrived and there’s lots of activity going on in the house.  We’re surrounded by boxes of books, Turkish ornaments and apple tea, lists and jobs to do.. and, somewhere between now and 7 o’clock, I guess I should grab a shower and possibly put on a frock, or else I’ll scare people away dressed like I am at the moment.

Box of books

It’s been a busy week – yesterday, we went around the local libraries delivering their complimentary copies and I met some lovely people.  It’s amazing how much support there is for writers, new and old, across Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire.  For example, many of the libraries have Writer’s Groups, and I’ve been invited to attend the sessions and talk about writing, and the book which I’m very much looking forward to.

 

In Wolverton library, I met a very nice customer who asked if I can write a Detective novel next, as that’s his favourite.  It’s agreed that he will be the main character in it… The best bit about yesterday was my ‘Chauffeur’s Behaviour’… AKA Roger, the husband… who decided to shout of the window at me each time I walked to and from the libraries, ‘Good luck Penny Canvin the new author’, much to the confusion of passers-by!

 

So, off we go tonight, to see old friends, meet new ones, eat, drink and be merry whilst officially launching my book into the world.  And tomorrow?  Well, other than recover from the last few manic weeks, I really do need to start properly writing that second novel….

 

Looking forward to seeing all that are coming this evening!

 

Penny

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Paperback Book Launch 25th October 2014!

The Autumn weather is here, and the summer seems a distant memory… so why not get into a summery mood by coming along to a Turkish themed book launch!  Yes, the date is set – 25th October 2014 and will be held at the Grill Med, Milton Keynes from 7pm.  Join us for a complimentary apple tea and borek, and take the opportunity to purchase the paperback for £5.99.  And, why not make the most of the beautiful food on offer and stay for the Buffet offered by Ali and his family for £12.99 per person.  If you haven’t been to the restaurant before, give it a try.  It’s one of our favourites.

Click here to find the Grill Med’s address and Google Map.

See you on the 25th Oct!  yay!

Book launch flyer jpeg