Morcambe and Wise. We have nothing on you. Comedy writers meet.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014 (Blog posting re-printed with permission by Sue Watson.

Lynda Renham, Live and Unplugged!

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Recently, I agreed to meet an online friend. In the flesh. In their home. 
Now this online friend may be Lynda Renham, a fellow author with many books and sales under her belt – but what’s to stop her also being an axe-wielding-serial-killing-best-selling-author? She might well be the literary ‘Queen of Comedy’ and has delighted us all with her best-selling books, ‘Croissants and Jam,’ ‘Coconuts and Wonderbras,’ ‘Pink Wellies and Flat Caps’ and the thoughtfully (and sensitively) retitled ‘The Dog’s Bollocks,’ but what does she do when she’s not writing best-selling novels? Does she lock people in her attic? Eat human livers with a fine chianti and fava beans a la Hannibal Lecter? Or is she simply as lovely and funny in the flesh as she is on social network?

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Chaperoned by my husband and 14-year-old daughter, we set out to discover answers to our questions at Lynda Renham’s pile in darkest Oxfordshire. Along the winding roads my husband kept asking me how well I knew these people who’d kindly invited us to lunch as my daughter warned me (in a voice not unlike my own) of how we shouldn’t mess with  ‘online Stranger Danger Mum!’

Arriving in Oxfordshire, imagine our concern to find the house didn’t exist, no-one was around except a man waving frantically at cars in the middle of the road. Is this a local Oxfordshire custom we wondered, putting up the car windows and locking all doors.

A text and some directions later we were finally ushered into Lynda and her husband Andrew’s home. And after a lovely warm welcome, Lynda and I talked and didn’t stop. For hours. It’s amazing how similar we are and how we can laugh… and talk … and laugh and it all started online with a few clicks of the mouse. It was a wonderful afternoon, the first, I hope of many, with fine food, lovely wine, and delicious company… and not a fava bean or fine Chianti in sight!
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Here’s Lynda’s version of events…..

A Sunday, not many moons ago I arranged to meet another author. Of course, we knew what the other looked like but you know how we all put on those old photos on Facebook. Yes, exactly. She might turn out to be ninety for all I knew. Not that there is anything wrong with someone being ninety of course, but you know what I mean?

So, there was Andrew and I waiting, panicking about the food. We’d checked lasagne would be okay but things have a tendency to go wrong don’t they? We usually do have lumpy sauce. But this time everything was going well. The house looked tidy, the food was cooking nicely. If only I could stop looking out of the window and relax.

Our house is not easy to find. There are no street signs. So, when I received a text telling me they were near both Andrew, I and Bendy (our cat) had our eyes fixed on the window. Then a car went by slowly and I saw the woman passenger looking closely at the house names.

‘That must be them,’ I said to Andrew.

He hurried out to direct them to our cottage and I felt the first stirrings of nerves. What if she dislikes me? What if my house is too small? I watched as the car turned around by the local pub and Andrew throwing himself in front of it. Good God, has he gone mad? He waved them down, chatted through the window and then walked back as they drove off. Oh no.

‘What happened?’ I asked worriedly.

‘They didn’t like me so have decided to go home.’

‘What!’ I said. I thought she seemed nice.

He laughed.

We strolled back to the cottage and waited for another text. Then we get one and they are at the pub. The right one this time, not pub I don’t mean but the right person. All pubs are the right ones aren’t they? And then they were here, hugging me at my front door. Sue Watson and her husband Nick and their lovely daughter and what a fab day we had. It was like meeting myself.

I think we chatted so much that we almost didn’t get to dinner.
Confessions of a Chocoholic 1
You can win one of Sue’s books ‘Younger, Thinner, Blonder’ over on my Chocolate fun day here.http://www.facebook.com/events/275421782582579/?fref=ts We are celebrating my collection of thoughts and chocolate musings ‘Confessions of a Chocoholic’ and I am thrilled Sue is on board.
We are going to have lots of fun on the day. So join me and my lovely author friend Sue on the 8th Feb. Join now! Chocolate galore for everyone.
Plus you can a copy of The Dog’s Bollocks’ Who wants to miss that?
Thank you Lynda! Looking forward to our next get-together very soon! And if you LOVE the amazing pictures of Lynda’s book, ‘The Dog’s Bollocks,’ featured in this article they are available from the talented team at Pics R Ushttps://www.facebook.com/pages/Pics-R-Us/275163365968926
Lynda’s book cover is illustrated by Gracie Klumpp at http://gracieklumpp.com/

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Online Chocolate Fun Day

 

Confessions of a Chocoholic 1

Hello everyone,

Just a little bit of news. My new book is finished and I’m celebrating with a little chocolate fun day online. I do hope you can join us. Everyone is welcome. There are lots of prizes. Signed books by Sue Watson, myself, Jon Rance, Sarah England, Sarah Fortin, Christy Potter Cass, Anna Bell, Mandy James and Mandy Baggot. Lots of chocolate prizes and fun galore. Starting at 3 in the afternoon British time and finishing at 10.

Here is the link, do feel free to join us.

http://www.facebook.com/events/275421782582579/?ref=ts&fref=ts

Look forward to seeing you there.

Lynda

xx

 

My View on the World of Ebooks (for what it’s worth)

Confessions of a Chocoholic 1

 

I’ve given a great deal of thought to my books and the best way to sell them. I’ve watched books sell for 59p to 77p and have studied all the deals offered on Amazon and have spent a great deal of time talking on the phone to an Amazon representative who was keen to get me to sign with Amazon exclusively.

Much thought and a great deal of watching has made me choose the path I have now taken.

I have chosen to give two books to Amazon exclusively just to test the waters and so far have not been impressed.

I’ve watched the countdown that Amazon offers and their offer to put my book on for free and have come to a few conclusions. Bear in mind these are mine. This is my choice and is not critical of how anyone else works. I have tried the freebie and the 77p price. But finally I have made my decision.

I have decided not to sell my work at less than £1.99. I feel my work is worth that. If I sell my work for 77p or less than frankly I feel I may as well hand them out to people in the street. I value myself and my work and feel I devalue myself and my work by doing that. It takes many months of hard work to write a novel and is good value at £1.99. I am happy to sell older books at a lower price but no lower than £1.53 unless for a special promotion.

I feel the countdown and freebie offers are only beneficial to Amazon. People rush to download them but how many read them immediately? Not many. People will grab an offer. I’ve done it and still they sit on my Kindle. Freebies too and while your book climbs the freebie chart it of course drops in the paid Kindle one. It all seems pointless.

I will not hand over my books exclusively to Amazon because I sell well on other platforms so why should I?

If my books are in the charts great, if they’re not, it doesn’t matter. I’m looking at the big picture.

I think Amazon are the only winners of the KDP select programme and I am refusing to be part of it for the time being. The only thing I do find annoying is when another platform lowers the price of my ebook without my knowledge and then Amazon drops to price match. I hate this loss of control. Amazon’s aim is to put everyone out of business and I want no part of that.

I,  in agreement with my publisher and management agency have decided to sell my books at the value I think they are worth. and not worry about charts. I’d rather have a fab readership and give them value for money and stay the same price. After all, as a reader the thing that irks me most is continual price changes and I have bought books at £1.99 only to see them on for 77p the next day. Very annoying.

I’m in this business for the rest of my life hopefully. So, if you want a Lynda Renham book I hope you’ll be happy to pay between £1.53 and £1.99. Think of me like L’Oreal, because I’m worth it.