I tried the traditional route of seeking either an agent or publisher but the process is time-consuming and fraught with difficulties. Many publishers are reluctant to take on unknown authors because of the financial risk involved. When it became possible to self-publish using Kindle Direct Publishing, I decided to give it a go, self-publishing initially two collections of short stories. In the meantime, I was polishing my novel with the help of the wonderful New Writers Scheme of the Romantic Novelists' Association. Late last year, with a more than a gulp of panic, I uploaded 'A Suitable Young Man.' One of the things I did do was to have the cover professionally designed to my brief by the lovely Berni Stevens www.bernistevensdesign.com. It proved to be a wise choice as there have been many compliments. My gamble has paid off in that sales are increasing, not just in the UK but in the US, Canada and Australia. Shortly after, I took the decision to use the Createspace facility. That process wasn't without pain but I'm proud of the fact that I did it and my book is now available as paperback, as well as an ebook, at www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00OXUYOUA. When self-publishing, marketing and promotion is essential and does take up a lot of time. But even traditionally published authors are expected to do a certain amount of promotion and marketing work.
So what's the book about then? Set in 1950s Horwich, 'A Suitable Young Man' is a nostalgic tale of family, friendship, love, loyalty and loss. One dark December night, Kathy Armstrong is rescued by Nick Roberts, whom she'd known as a schoolgirl. But Nick is a Teddy boy, hell-bent on having a good time in the pubs and dance halls of the time. Shortly after, she meets accountant John Talbot at a party and is captivated by his middle-class charm. To the background of the new rock and roll, a mounting crisis over the Suez Canal, family and personal crises, Kathy struggles with a wayward attraction to Nick and her incubating love for John. But which one is The Suitable Young Man?