Sometimes I have to remind myself that I am a reasonably serious old bloke who has scribbled poems for about 50 years. Finding myself posing in a Santa hat holding a Kindle Fire device for a picture to be captioned with punny quips made me wonder if I had lost the plot. If I appear disrespectful to poets and poetry I do apologise. O brave new world that has such peep-shows in it. Such is the circus of the modern book world. Apparently some fiction writers are so busy on the road that all their stuff is done by ghost writers. Seemingly it’s the brand that matters. It seems incredible to me. Perhaps I won’t beat myself up over the Santa hat. If it makes poetry more accessible and unstuffy then it has to be a Google plus. I defy anyone to ghost write in the style of any of the six Freeze Frame writers.
Far more importantly, the book is out there and up on Amazon. It was delivered without anaesthetic during the night, about 24 hours premature but at a good weight and with powerful voice. This is not the end of course but at least everything is all together and in one place. The stars are the poets who had enough faith in me to join in and risk all to be part of the Freeze Frame project.
Tomorrow evening 1800 hours UK (GMT) - 12 noon USA EST – there will be a launch party at which all can meet the poets. There will be readings and comments and hopefully a few silly hats. This takes place on Facebook with a live link to a Google+ ‘Hangout’ – you can watch us all having our virtual champagne and reading a selection of poems from the collection. Here’s the link:
That’s done it then! My e book “I Threw A Stone” is out there. They pushed the button last night for the Amazon Kindle launch and on the basis of two promo sales, I zoomed into the charts at No 42 ahead of some guys called T.S.Eliot and Shakespeare. Now look chaps, try not to get too fed up. There’s loads of writer support groups out there for when you’ve had a bad day. I think I’ve slithered down the ratings now to a depth from which you cannot ascend without a decompression chamber. I am pleased with the presentation of the book. I am hoping that by adding a free audio file that some extra value can be bounced out of the poems. When I read poetry to myself from a book I try to imagine how the writer would have stressed different words. When I go to poetry readings and “performance” events I find that the jingle jangle jostle often defeats my concentration. The judges of course are you ladies and gentlemen who doubtless will be jamming the servers at Amazon as you tear one another to shreds in the lunge to get your copies. This e publishing business has had the effect of winkling me out of my taciturn shell-back life style. I have found myself performing all sorts of media pirouettes that I would not have imagined possible. In order to do the book trailer I ended up on the sea-shore at Barton on Sea. It is great fun of course and ego-massaging to be the centre of attention. If I’m honest I know that for me creativity does not flow from “performance”. You can see my starring role here.
In this new world of e books and tweets I do wonder if the media mincer will allow the whole writer to carry on. The traditional poetic wanderer, stamping the hills and staring out of windows in seedy cafes must still exist. I guess guys like that are not exactly publisher’s PR material. Many of them have smelly feet and ask you for a coin or two for a cup of hot whisky. I am so lucky in that I have my partner, Jill and the technical know how of Gallo-Romano Media. I’m a shambolic old duffer with a pencil. I get so frustrated with all these computers. Sometimes I just start shouting “Control alt number lock 467″ and I don’t care who hears me. Apparently it’s very rude. I said it once to a nine year old I.T professor and he nearly died. Here are some links to my book. For Amazon UK here. And for Amazon US here.
As I have said already, the main point of this collection is that it comes with a free 45 minute MP3 audio album. If you buy the book you can easily get the audio onto your Kindle. There is a web address in the book that you type onto your computer, this downloads a file containing the album. Connect your Kindle via its lead to your computer and copy the contents of the album into the Kindle Music folder. You can then listen to me performing the poems whilst you follow the words. Gallo-Romano Media commissioned a young talented musician to compose and perform a piece for the title poem – which appears on the trailer and the full album.
Thank you to everyone for everything. I am now going back into my poet’s cave with my pencil…