Publishing my husband's book - risk or triumph?

Hooray! It’s launch day for my husband’s book! It’s all about how to make optimum use of your Filofax (or other planner/personal organiser  such as Gillio, Van Der Spek).

Steve is actually a bit of a guru in this world. Although he bought his first Filofax organiser in 1986, he moved to an electronic organiser in the 1990s. A change of job in 2005 where he worked in a high security environment prompted his return to a Filofax.

He’s used one daily ever since. (Actually, he has a double cupboard full of them.)

Now retired from being a radio and electronics engineer, he now devotes his time to the Philofaxy blog website and the planner community. I’ve lost count of the meet-ups he’s organised in London, New York, Los Angeles, Edinburgh, Chenonceaux, Niort (France), Toronto, Denver, Washington DC, Stockholm – to name just a few.

Quirky fact: he featured in the highly acclaimed The Dull Men of Great Britain book published in 2019 by Random House due to his Filofax dedication. Since 2016 Steve co-hosts a podcast, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Plannerverse, devoted to making better use of planners.

Philofaxy meet-ups in Los Angeles, Chenonceaux and Denver

So he’s the person qualified to write this guide. But like most normal people, he had little knowledge of the publishing world. However, sharing an office with me while I published eleven novels rubbed off on him. He knew it was a case of ‘known unknowns’.

I agreed to edit, format and publish it for him. I’d published two non-fiction books, one back in the clouds of the past, i.e. 2012 Military or Civilians: The curious anomaly of the German Women’s Auxiliary Services during the Second World War  and more recently The 500 Word Writing Buddy: 35 inner secrets for the new writer. My experience with non-fiction was limited, to say the least.

But now I had a secret weapon: Vellum publishing software. But first, editing. Luckily, Steve has seen how hard I am on myself when I run my first self-edit over my own work. Ditto on my critique writing partners work. (She takes an equally ‘robust’ approach!) Anyway, I didn’t spare him. A very kind beta reader with deep knowledge of the organiser world, Janet Gustafson, gave me valuable technical input.

Revisions sent back to author – weird to be on that end of the process for once. 😉 When it came to formatting, I have never made so many sub-headings! But Vellum came up trumps. I used the same approach to front matter and back matter in the print version as I do for my novels – endorsements, very short author bio, title page, copyright then, as it’s a non-fiction book, an introduction and note. Then straight into it! At the back, a chronology, lists of (known) models, a request/plea/grovel for a review and then acknowledgements.

I’ve been publishing my own work for a fair number of years and have set up my own imprint – Pulcheria Press – plus I have publishing accounts at Amazon, Apple, Kobo, Barnes & Noble and Ingram Spark, so Steve had his own in-house publisher.

While he’s a seasoned blogger (far better than me!), I created graphics for him and some PR marketing material and draft posts as well as author page on retailers. This book world is a slightly weird world and I hope I’ve been a good guide.

His pleasure when he saw the lines climbing on the sales graphs this morning was a joy to watch. Readers (and fans) in UK, US, Australia, Japan, Germany, Italy and Canada have bought already in ebook and print. He’s enjoying the supportive comments on social media from his world wide community of which he’s an integral part and where he has so many friends. As he says,”You cannot put a value on friendship, it is priceless.

There will be bubbly tonight, possibly sooner…

You can buy it now from:
Ebook: Kindle (Amazon worldwide)    Apple    Kobo    B&N Nook
Paperback: Amazon UK   Amazon US    Barnes & Noble  Book Depository  Abe Books

Alison Morton is the author of Roma Nova thrillers –  INCEPTIO, CARINA (novella), PERFIDITAS, SUCCESSIO,  AURELIA, NEXUS (novella), INSURRECTIO  and RETALIO,  and ROMA NOVA EXTRA, a collection of short stories.  Audiobooks are available for four of the series. Double Identity, a contemporary conspiracy, starts a new series of thrillers. Double Pursuit, the sequel, is now out!

Download ‘Welcome to Alison Morton’s Thriller Worlds’, a FREE eBook, as a thank you gift when you sign up to Alison’s monthly email newsletter. You’ll also be among the first to know about news and book progress before everybody else, and take part in giveaways.

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