Launch Day Mnemonics


Having struggled through a frantic first book launch, I need to avoid a repeat performance. So this handy name mnemonic – memory device – helps recall some of the key elements. Using the first letter of each element spells TROUP, as in Bobby Troup, composer of ‘Get Your Kicks on Route 66’ – play any recording to remember.

Time: make sure that time is on your side. Schedule enough time for the key elements. Good timing ensures that you’re not going crazy on launch day because something hasn’t been done.

Reviews: finding reviewers and giving them Time to read your book is essential. Avoid having all your reviews appear after the launch.

Originality: Look for a unique angle for your book launch – be original. Go beyond interviewing your characters, invite their alter-egos to the launch in costume. Organisation is also needed to ensure success, but that comes with Time. As for the Orchestra, you only book that for a stadium launch.

Unforeseen: Prepare for the unforeseen, things that creep up at the last minute. Goodies held up in the post. Guest speaker from Idaho arrested for giving his wife too small a box of chocolates.

Profile: By Profile I don’t mean Platform – that should be paved well-before the journey. Check that all your profiles on social media, your website, Goodreads, Amazon Author Central, etcetera are all up-to-date with the same text and photographs. As for the Launch Day Party, who is going to forget that?

That’s enough from me folks.


This is my monthly contribution to the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. The October 1st post celebrates the forthcoming IWSG anthology, Guide to Publishing and Beyond. The awesome co-hosts for this special anniversary posting of the IWSG are Kristin Smith, Elsie, Suzanne Furness, and Fundy Blue!



A post from the heart… with tears of sadness and joy.



I don’t feel like writing anything, it seems like so much work for me to get it onto paper. Life gets in the way sometimes and I lose the motivation to do the things I enjoy doing. I am not going to bore you with the why not and how come, it runs to deep but maybe one day it will surface and rear it’s ugly head then I will deal with it. Until then I will try to write about the things I feel strongly about and maybe a few more of my memories……….

When I was growing up I loved animals. It didn’t matter what kind of animal it was, I always found beauty in all things. I would find a “stray” animal, dog or cat, and bring it home and beg my mom and dad to let me keep it. A few times I succeeded by hiding…

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Staying on Track

Dewy Cobweb ~ by Norman Hyett

Dewy Cobweb ~ by Norman Hyett

Two weeks into September and I am on track with the Multiple Sclerosis September Challenge. Thus far, I have met my target to write a short story a week.

The aim was to focus this month on writing (and editing) four tales in my “Gossamer Flames” saga, so I have been working through them chronologically. The first two were written before the month started, along with Nos. 4 and 8. Another four will complete the first Book of the Saga – Dust & Death.

Two down and two to go. Halfway and the challenge looks feasible. Donations are very much welcome – all in a very good cause.


I am trying to vary my style a little, especially in terms of POV.  I have been attempting to write ‘deep/tight POV’ and it has been a real test. I am also having to edit as I go, or at least by working through each day’s writing before continuing, then doing some final edits before each week is out. Fighting the trials of the MS has added to the challenge, but I am winning.

However, I am aware that these edits may not be enough. I need volunteers as beta readers – to see if the tales work and make sense, whether the POV rings true, if my grammar sucks, etcetera. Volunteers please contact me. The beta readers for my opening tale found enough to warrant a revision, or two.

If you sign up for my newsletter, you will receive the final version before anyone else sees the ‘Book’. Beyond that day, I will release “Dust & Death – Book I of Gossamer Flames” as a collection.

Looking ahead to October, I know that I have to put some time aside to do my tax return – not that I make a fortune. Then I need to devote some time to the re-location of “Fates Maelstrom” from Dartmoor to Snowdonia.

For now it’s back to killing some vermin in Scotland – just don’t ask me what they are voting… it won’t matter when the Solar Apocalypse comes.


Is the Challenge over?

When I woke this morning – Tuesday September 2nd – my body refused to co-operate. I was ready to give up all my writing challenges and escape. Does that make any sense?

Maybe it doesn’t if you read my last post on here… my last Insecure Writer’s Support Group post, when I wrote about the inspiration that keeps me going. However, it’s the first Wednesday of the month again and I have the doubts and the fears that we are meant to have conquered. Seems I am back to the struggle stage.


Writing over the last month had been more about escaping into research… and into other worlds = MMORPGs – gaming. I had great plans for September: write at least one complete story in the Gossamer Flames series every week of the month. Not a lot in comparison with the 100k in 100 days Challenge that I’m failing at miserably and as usual. But this should be so much easier as it’s over a shorter period – just a month. It’s also less intensive than the A to Z Challenge, although that inspired many of the shorts in Gossamer Flames.

Creating a story a week is one bit of pressure that I have set for myself as part of the MS Challenge that runs in September – my Support Page is at . And two days in I was thinking of giving up, even if it is a central part of my Life Challenge… fighting the MonSter that wants my Life but mustn’t win.

If I have written four complete tales, and edited them, by the end of the month then I will have reached one goal – although some sponsorship would be a bonus.

And thanks to a comment, I’m re-inspired. The words made me visit a fascinating blogsite, where I read a wonderful article on Spirals Following the trail to its creative conclusion, I bought my long-suffering wife a well-deserved present.

Steampunk Heart from JazzFeathers

Steampunk Heart from JazzFeathers

In case you hadn’t realised, this is my monthly post in IWSG and the awesome co-hosts for the September 3 posting of the IWSG will be Laura at My Baffling Brain, mark Koopmans, Shah Wharton, and Sheena-Kay Graham. And it’s IWSG’s three year anniversary of posting!

Oh you were expecting something else. Were you thinking I meant the Ice Bucket Challenge when I said Challenge in the title?

Yes that has dominated the media and is a worthy cause for ALS alias motor neurone disease, another neurological nightmare. Ice Water is also meant to be good for MS, except something cold like water sends me into spasms. If challenged I would sign the cheque and be inspired by Patrick Stewart’s Ice Bucket Challenge, jst as the Huffington Post were

There is also a link on the Huffington Post report to Benedict Cumberbatch who showed another way to NOT evade the Ice Bucket Challenge. How to douse a dragon?