Tuesday, 11 May 2021

Transformations

 


How we came to publish this one

This is the culmination of three years’ work. This volume contains the winning entries of the 2018, 2019, and 2020 Waterloo Festival Writing Competition. Each year the winning entries were published as an e-book. We have now put all of these entries into one paperback volume.      

The title

This pulls together the titles of the other three volumes which were:

2018 To be …. To become

2019 Transforming Being

2020 Transforming Communities   

Some notes about the process

The stories in this book were all edited as they were prepared for the individual volumes. They were given three final proof reads: by the authors themselves and by an independent proof-reader who had not been involved in previous edits. We also pass all of our book though a technical proof-read. The latter, computer-aided, looks for things lie extra spaces, repeated words and inconsistencies in punctuation and spelling.    

The cover

As we often do, we based our cover on a picture we found on pixabay. These are both copyright free and free to use. We do a search on the title or something similar. Naturally this time the word we searched on was, as you might expect,  “transformations”.  

Some notes about style

There many interpretations of the theme for each of the titles. We tended to choose stories that were clever with the theme. Many of the contributions are quite literary in style.    

Who we think the reader is

These stories are for the reader who likes to be challenged to think.

   

Finances

This book has some way to go to cover all of its costs but it continues to sell steadily. Our monthly statement gives a slightly false impression, however. It was edited and designed in-house. In other words the partners did the work for no fee or wage but take a share of the net sales revenue as it arrives. It has in fact covered its upfront costs.           

 

What else

We have published a record number of books in the last twelve months. We are pleased to have this within our collection. Because of the several lockdowns more books have been produced generally and more people have read books.

 

Review copies

It’s always great if you can buy the book and give us a review. Just click on the link  to be taken to our on-line bookshop. If you would like to review and you are strapped for cash, just get in touch for a free PDF or mobi-file.      

Monday, 19 April 2021

Mulling it Over

 

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How we came to publish this one

This is our 2020 annual anthology. We always like to take a Christmas theme and ask our writers to subvert it. They did that very nicely.  

The title

The Christmas prompt was “mull” as in “mulled wine”. Naturally mulled wine features in many of the stories – as does the Island of Mull and of course “mulling it over”. We discovered also that a “mull” is a type of stony outcrop and also an implement in making books.           

Some notes about the process

The stories in this book all went through one or two stage of editing and had the normal three proof reads. Authors are invited to proof read, we conduct a technical proof read and we ask another editor, to proof read. The latter is one who hasn’t been involved in the initial editing.  

The cover

As we often do, we based our cover on a picture we found on pixabay. These are both copyright free and free to use. We do a search on the title or something similar. “Thinking” found the picture of the young man who is sitting pensively on what could easily be a part of the Island of Mull. We normally shy away from real life figures – readers prefer to decide for themselves what characters look like. But this figure represents everyman and anyway he has his back to us. We prefer wraparound pictures like this to having the back cover plain. The sky here allows plenty of space for title and burb.        

Some notes about style

A review on Amazon says it all:

‘I have enjoyed reading many of the stories in this book - they are really fun to read and they do trigger your mind. Quirky, funny, and unique, as different writers carry different voices to their stories. I am familiar with several of the writers in this collection, and I am also pleased to get to know new writers in this collection. 'The Island of Mull' is a great concept - we all have had plenty to mull over in 2020. It's a great collection of stories. Very well done!'

 

Who we think the reader is

As the subtitle says, this collection contains “tales to make you think”. Generally in these annual theologies we are neither womag nor too literary. We are somewhere in between. This is no exception.  

Finances

This book has some way to go to cover all of its costs but it continues to sell steadily. Our monthly statement gives a slightly false impression, however. It was edited and designed in-house. In other words the partners did the work for no fee or wage but take a share of the net sales revenue as it arrives. It has in fact covered it upfront costs.           

 

What else

We have published a record number of books in the last twelve months. We are pleased to have this within our collection. Because of the several lockdowns more books have been produced generally and more people have read books.

 

Review copies

It’s always great if you can buy the book and give us a review. Just click on the link  to be taken to our on-line bookshop. If you would like to review and you are strapped for cash, just get in touch for a free PDF or mobi-file.      

Saturday, 3 April 2021

Whisky for Breakfast by Christopher P Mooney

 

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How we came to publish this one

Christopher signed up with our own Debz Hobbs-Wyatt to have his work edited. She spotted a great collection of short stories.

The title

The title came from one of the stories in the collection. This often happens. Sometimes a line in or even the title of one of the stories epitomizes the feeling of the whole collection.  

Some notes about the process

This went through the normal three stages of editing though it was very light in each case: Christopher and Debz had already done most of the donkey work.   

The cover

The brown on the cover and the title, indicate to us straight away that the material in this is sombre. Fortunately with short story collections there is no real genre to which we need to conform. Elements of the picture here and the fonts are shades of similar colours, giving the overall effect of something subtle. This entirely suits the tone of the book.

 

Some notes about style

Some of the reviews on Amazon give a useful indication of the style:

 

‘Whisky for Breakfast includes thirty-five pieces of transgressive fiction. Yes, the content - language, characters, scenarios, themes, etc. - may be considered shocking by some, but it's important to note this is obviously not the writer’s intent, nor does it dilute or in any way detract from the obvious quality of the writing. It's really great to read something provocative that gets you thinking! Loved it!’   

 

‘A superb read. I love to read but don’t make the time. I made the time for this. It shocks and entertains brilliantly. So descriptive and gritty.

 

‘Different to anything I have ever read! Brilliantly written and each story is written from a completely different perspective which is interesting to read.’

 

 

Who we think the reader is

This collection is not an easy read. It challenges the reader. So, this is for the reader who likes to be invited to think and who likes a literary style.

 

Finances

This book has some way to go to cover all of its costs but it continues to sell steadily.       

 

What else

We have published a record number of books in the last twelve months. We are pleased to have this within our collection.

 

Review copies

It’s always great if you can buy the book and give us a review. Just click on the link to be taken to Amazon. If you would like to review and you are strapped for cash, just get in touch for a free PDF or mobi-file.      

Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Spring into better Times

It’s been a while since I posted, what with ongoing health changes in the midst of Lockdown. My main writing focus has been on short stories in my Mum series published on CafeLit and a few competitions. Okehampton ran its first short story competition and I’m delighted to hear my friend won! Congratulations!

Here’s to better times ahead and stay safe everyone.




Monday, 8 March 2021

Transformations

 


This delightful English language anthology of literary fiction comprises the winning entries for the 2018, 2019 and 2020 Waterloo Festival Writing Competitions. The themes were, respectively, To Be... To Become, Transforming Being and Transforming Communities. We chose these because they tell a good story, have a strong voice, and are imaginative in their interpretation of the theme. The writers present us with characters that are believable and rounded. The stories all contain a pleasing narrative balance.

Entrants were asked to produce a short story or a monologue in 1,000 words or fewer. Less is certainly more here. Style is diverse and each story is completely different from the others.

 

RRP = £8.00 

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 Buy from us: UK   (includes £1.75  p&p)

 
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Buy from us: rest of the world  (includes £3.00 p&p)
   
 
Please note that all of our books are print on demand. We use this unashamedly:  
  • it is better for the environment (we don't waste paper or processes)
  • it is better for our books  (they don't rot in warehouses) 
  • it is better for our customers -  (they get a brand new book, hot off the press) 
 However, this also means  it may take about ten days to get your book to you. It also means that retailers may show "out of stock".  However, they can and do get the book very quickly.    

Saturday, 6 March 2021

The World in an Eye by Maroula Blades

 

How we came to publish this one

Maroula submitted to us in response to our open call. She is not one of our regular writers. We liked her work and so we were pleased to publish her.           

The title

The title came about after discussion between Maroula and her editor. It’s often the way with titles. They’ll occur as we get the book ready for publication. Sometimes the title of a collection will also be the title of one of the pieces – perhaps one that epitomizes the overriding theme of the collection.    

Some notes about the process

This went through the normal three stages of editing. One of our other flash fiction  contributors, Allison Symes, edited this book.  

The cover

We used the normal “frame” that we have on all of our flash collections. Maroula is an established poet and artist so we used some of her art work for the cover.

Some notes about style

Some of the reviews on Amazon give a useful indication of the style:

 

“Short striking stories capturing pivotal moments of peoples' lives, tough lives in the fringes of society, in a starkly brutal but honest manner dressed poetically with mesmerising and haunting language.

 

“Simply told stories in which Maroula Blades sees beyond the obvious, which is not obvious at all.”

 

“Great depth is found in these weaving narratives, to go on these journeys was an immersive experience - food for the soul.
Wonderful.”

 

Who we think the reader is

Flash as ever is for the reader who hasn’t got a lot of time to sit with a book in their  hands but has plenty of time to think. You read the story and it stays with you for quite a while as you go about your everyday business.

 

Finances

This book has some way to go to cover all of its costs but it continues to sell steadily.       

 

What else

We have published a record number of books in the last twelve months. We are pleased to have this within our collection.

 

Review copies

It’s always great if you can buy the book and give us a review. Just click on the image to be taken to Amazon. If you would like to review and you are strapped for cash, just get in touch for a free PDF or mobi-file.      

 

Tuesday, 16 February 2021

Some Thoughts on "Mulling It Over"

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Do forgive the pun in the title!

 I invited  people to ask questions about Mulling It Over and here are the first few. I'll keep updating the page as more come in.  

 

What was the inspiration for the title? 

For our annual anthologies we always like to take a Christmas theme and invite our writers to subvert it  - or not as they see fit.  So this year it was "mulled wine" and that is in fact mentioned in several stories. The Island of Mull has been mentioned in a few as well. One story even mentions a mull that is used in book-binding.       

 
How easy (or not!) do you find choosing a suitable cover? 

There is a science, an art and a craft to creating a good book cover. There is also some genre-specific etiquette to follow though with mixed author collections there are no hard and fast rules other than the bottom line of creating something that is eye-catching that will make potential readers curious. 

As we have a fair amount of freedom in this sort of collection, we tend to start off by putting the book title in the search field on Pixabay, the site that provides free copyright free images. For this one we had to rephrase and look for "thinking". I usually prefer to avoid photographs of humans as most readers prefer to make up their own minds about what characters look like.  However, this works as this could be Everyman and he has his back to us.  Plus, he could well be sitting on the Island of Mull as he mulls over life. 

We have to pick a picture that allows space for the title and and sub-title on the front and the blurb on the back. We prefer wraparound pictures. We're cautious about blue as it is very difficult to get the printed book to match what you can see on the screen. The greys in this picture work quite well, though.      

 
How easy (or not) is it getting anthologies like Mulling It Over on to sites like Amazon etc? 

Getting books on to Amazon and other sites is trivial.  We register Bridge House titles manually with Nielsen's and that then feeds the title into places like Amazon, Waterstones, Tesco, Barnes and Noble.  This is a free service and comes as part of us having bought  an ISBN. But not every book shop in the world is a customer of Nielsen, though every book shop in the world can look up a title that is registered on Nielsen. They can certainly obtain the book and they can choose to list it. 

We pay £8.40  a year for each title to be listed by our distributors. That is really a bargain as we're talking about world-wide distribution, though most sales are in the UK and the US with a few then in Canada,  Australia and Europe.  Bizarrely one title is selling really well in India. 

But unfortunately that isn't the end of the story. 

Amazon has a will of its own and is currently selling this book at almost twice the RRP and has got the wrong dimensions for it. Two of us have sent in a correction. Cheekily in mine I also put the link to The Hive where it is listed with the correct RRP. Note, I've also linked to  The Hive.that above and I'd like to give a shout out to the Hive. I ordered two "out of stock" books on Sunday and they're arriving tomorrow. No postage to pay. 

I'm never too bothered about the "out of stock" sign. It can mean they've sold a bunch. We know as well that our distributors can get stock to them in a couple of days. Millions of books are produced every day. It's unrealistic to expect every bookseller to stock every single one. One order will trigger them to stock a few - five initially I believe. I was gratified to see another title has an Amazon warning.. "Hurry, Only fourteen left in stock."    

And RRP anyway. It's only the recommended retail price. A retailer can in fact charge exactly what they like.     

Should we get shirty with Amazon?  They have their bad points but they also have a lot of good ones. So, let's just keep them on their toes.