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We have moved to move on and be #SavedByOneBook

December 6, 2021

18 Nov 2021

We’ve settled into our new space but are still recovering from the actual move. I don’t recommend doing a large four way move: books stored in an office in Stroud, bookcases on a farm, most furniture in a sea container in Minety and basic personal stuff at our new Malmesbury address. All this with very little money.

So, a very big thank you to the friends who made it possible for us to move and find a roof over our heads, without their help we would have been homeless!

But, in our new temporary home, we can continue with promoting and publishing wonderful authors. We have great plans but need your help to sell our books. You’re essential to create the word-of-mouth buzz: support us all over the social media and encourage all your friends to buy one of our books.

I’ve just given up my lovely home but will not give up promoting literature and rely on you to be #SavedByOneBook

Old study

New bed study

19 Nov 2021

Today I was back at the Shambles market in Stroud. It was quite an eerie experience because, however much my personal circumstances have changed, the market with it’s zen vibe (it must be Ron’s playlist) hasn’t changed at all. If you are in Stroud do come and see us, Shambles is packed with characters, and lovely things. As always it’s rewarding to speak to readers and to promote our books and authors in person.

Being away of the office also gives me space of thinking about new ways to promote our books. Follow the diary for more details of our future activities. In the meantime, it would be great to ask all of your friends to buy just one of our books. This will make our day, but also our future. #SavedByOneBook

20 Nov 2021

I had another good day at the Shambles market and lovely chats with book lovers. I’m quite exhausted, but lots of ideas are bubbling up, and I will keep you posted.

21 Nov 2021

Today, we had a lovely surprise. One of the leading book sites in the Netherlands, Bazarow, took up our plight and featured it on their website. Very much appreciated!

If you buy one of our books, you not only help to buy a future for an independent publisher but you also contribute to providing income for some excellent well-deserving authors.

I adore books but to keep our company going most of my books had to go into storage and these are the few copies that I could take with me into our new temporary home.

With your help we can all be surrounded by plenty of wonderful books: support #SavedByOneBook.

22 Nov 2021

For the first time in my life I’m getting paid for something I’ve written! Usually it is me who is paying authors. Not that I consider myself to be a writer, being a publisher is quite enough, but today I was actually asked to send an invoice for a piece I’ve written about our struggle to survive.

I always enjoy wearing hats but this is a temporary new one. I couldn’t take many books but my winter hats have moved with me and managed to take over an empty bookcase. I think this is quite appropriate.

23 Nov 2021

We received a present from a very good friend. He’s been following our journey and has supported us all along but we were still surprised to receive his latest donation which makes all the difference and rescued us from the abyss. Thank you very much dear friend! With your help of all of you, keep buying books, we can survive. We’re putting in  all the hours and you and our dog Harry keep us going.

24 Nov 2021

Today, I realized that our new South African distributor has sold quite a lot of books by Karen Jennings. Well, that’s nice and very well deserved for this wonderful 2021 Booker Prize longlisted author. This means I have to print more books in South Africa, anything else is not possible, the shipping costs are prohibitive. But I have to pay my South African printer upfront. So now I have this unusual problem, because of success I have to spend money month before we receive the proceeds of sales. Maybe there is  a lovely South African philanthropist out there who can lend me the money for a couple of months. I live in hope.

25 Nov 2021

Today was an extra special day. Not only for the day to day business, but also two special things happened. Throughout our current troubles I and my brother have found great comfort and help by calling upon Titus Brandsma, a friend of my grandfather, who has been beatified. Today it was announced that the pope has acknowledged his miracle which sets him unto the road to sainthood. He actually performed quite a few miracles for us. I also was able to put in a good word for one of our benefactors.

We had some good news about friends ordering and recommending our books, thank you very much to all who keep our #SavedByOneBook campaign going. But today we especially salute our Titus.

26 Nov 2021

Today was another market day. I love running our bookstall and I wish I could clone myself because on market days I can sell any of our books and if there were many of me we would be saved. But you do help by promoting our books: tell all of your friends to buy just one book and be part of #SavedByOneBook.

I want to share with you my trusted blue market bag. It contains all the essentials, my SumUp card reader, my notebook (yes this is and remains a trusted companion), my mug, teabags and cup a soup sachets (even at an indoor markets the doors are open so it can get chilly) and other useful items.

I inherited this bag from my mum who died in 2013. She bought it to accompany her grandchildren to the beach. It’s been great to give it a new life but it is on its last legs now.

27 Nov 2021

Another market day in Stroud. It’s such a joy to meet readers and writers and get feedback on our books. But after all our other trials and tribulations, I’m quite exhausted and leave you with a picture of our stall this weekend.

28 Nov 2021

A very busy Sunday. I had lots of outstanding admin work and used the relatively quietness of a Sunday to think about a few important emails I have to sent out this coming week.

But amidst all this I received notice of a substantial donation by former colleague I really enjoyed working with. We haven’t been in touch much since we both started our own companies but he found out about our perils and came to the rescue. It couldn’t have been better timing but, then, he was always very good at this. Thank you very much.

Now it’s up to me to fill our order books. I’ll put in the hours even on a Sunday evening but that’s also because I love making a albeit small but lasting contribution to literature. Because that’s what will long outlive us.

29 Nov 2021

No major new developments today but I had a productive day. As always I work from my notebook. When, after twelve years in academia, I started in my first commercial job, my then boss said: this is the essential thing you need and handed me a notebook made from paper, well it was 1990 after all. I’ve never been without one. It might sound old fashioned, and I do make use of all the advantages technologies provides us, but as a backup the notebook is essential. Actually it gives me an opportunity to practise writing with a pen. It’s a bit frightening to think that today’s children might be in danger of losing the skill of handling pen and paper. On the bright side, I met a lovely young young woman today who is aspiring to become a poet. There’s always hope.

30 Nov 2021

Quite a few things to report today. Our very accommodating (now former) landlord today gave permission to released the full deposit back to us. After a two weeks’ delay we were worried that there was a problem but it’s all sorted now. We also got some wonderful support, initiated by one of our authors, with how to obtain a grant to continue our work and I will keep reporting about its progress.

I and my brother are getting used to being in a shared house and are very grateful to the lady of the house who is very considerate and introducing us to her lovely family members.

Harry, our black lab, is absolutely loving all the attention. I’m just grateful that I can continue promoting our wonderful authors and their books. Because that’s what it is all about to sell our books and you can be a great help by telling all your friends to buy a book: support #SavedByOneBook.

1 Dec 2021

Today I had a good chat with the lady who is going to help me with getting a grant. I’ve not done this before but we need all the help we can get. I’ve also been busy doing more promotion for our press, authors and books.

The more I think about it, the more I’m impressed with all the help we have received her from the wonderful people in Malmesbury. A very big thank you to you all and I leave you with this lovely view of the lovely Wiltshire countryside with Malmesbury as a backdrop. I’m very glad that, for now,  we have manage to continue living in this lovely town.

2 Dec 2021

Oh, dear, I’ve committed myself to work with professionals to put in a bid to the Arts Council England. Supported by a quite remarkable writing group. Thanks very much TSFG! I’m quite excited, even if we don’t get the grant, I expect to pick up a fair bit of useful knowledge. Of course, will keep you updated.

In the mean time, a bumper market weekend looms ahead.

Fri 3 Dec 9am – 3pm & 5pm – 9pm #Stroud Goodwill Evening
and Sat 4 Dec 9am – 3pm both @ShamblesMarket
Sun 5 Dec 10.30 – 17.30 Craft Fair @tetburygsp #Tetbury

I leave you with the view of my desk through my dormer window. I do miss the view of my old study across the fields.

3 & 4 Dec 2021

Absolutely exhausted after what are actually three markets in two days: Friday 9 am to 3 pm & 5 pm to 9 pm to 9, Saturday 9 am to 3 pm at the Shambles Market Stroud. It was successful but I’m very disappointed for having to wear a face mask again. I understand why it was made compulsory again but I still think it is discriminating for those of us who are hard of hearing, quite a lot of them seem to be keen readers and hence potential customers, but more importantly for all of us, I’m quite concerned about the health hazards of breathing through a increasingly grubby face mask pulled yet again out of a pocket or bag.

It’s another market in Tetbury tomorrow and I leave you with a rather hazy picture of my face mask, my ‘pirate mask’ because even during a pandemic I’m trying to stay fashionable. It’s hazy because of all the markets my phone battery is nearly depleted and the camera can’t flash. But that’s life, I will be back tomorrow.

5 Dec 2021

The market in Tedbury was hard-working but paid off in the end. Markets are such a roller-coaster experience, if we could predict what was going to happen, we would all be very rich. Yet, I enjoyed being there and made some useful contacts.

This on St Nicholas Eve, the day that in honour of this saint people in the Netherlands give each other presents and families come together. At least I hope his is still the case as lockdown restrictions there have recently tightened.

My mum used to send me a box full of St Nicholas sweets each year, which went down an absolute treat with my colleagues. Today, I miss the treats, the fun and presents but her and my dad most of all.

I leave you with a picture of St Nicholas riding his horse. Happy St Nicholas Day!

6 Dec 2021

After the bumper market weekend, I was ready for some time off, but instead I had to catch up with a lot of admin. I wear many hats but I must admit the admin one is not one my favourites. Today I made some progress with clearing he backlog, but I’m looking forward to a better day of being busy with having to dispatched more orders. Don’t forget you can help us enormously to tell all you friends to buy one of our books and support #SavedByOneBook. I leave you with a picture of me wearing one of my grand hats, this one went to the funerals of both my parents.