A little light launch

It’s probably not the way that experienced writers or publicists would do it, but the little light launch of my little new book turned out just fine….

Together on the night we raised a fair few pennies for Women V Cancer and, more importantly, got many people talking about the signs and symptoms of three of the most common cancers to affect women.

It seems that my little book really has started to do the job.

The nail-biting is over

I’ve had enough feedback now to let me stop fretting about whether I succeeded in getting the tone of the book right. I seem to have managed it.

I’ve actually been a little bit overwhelmed by the comments I’ve received. They’re all very positive, I hasten to add, but I think I’ve just been taken aback by how big an effect my little book seems to have had on some of its readers already. It’s obviously very early days (it’s been on sale for less than a week) but I’m content to let the feedback I’ve received thus far allow me to relax and stop biting my nails.

I’m new to the idea of promotion and punting and putting my work out there, so I’m not sure how best to share the comments but I’m guessing that utilising feedback to help spread the message about my book is a sensible thing to do.

Until I come up with a better plan, I’ve listed below a potted version of a few of the things that have been said so far. I’m chuffed enough that people are actually buying the book, so these comments really do mean a lot:

Well done! A great read with a hard punch.” Loraine Bryan

Really inspiring.” Jackie Maffin

I have had a good cry in a good way as I came to the end of my final treatment on Thursday after a long ten months of chemo, followed by a mastectomy and finally radiotherapy for invasive inflammatory breast cancer. Your first verse of ‘That List of Awful Things’ sums it up really and touched me so much, letting the flood gates open after being brave for ten months. I think that you have a gift and I think your book is going to be hugely successful…going on my first cycle tomorrow.” Wendy Yilmaz-Wood

Your words are lovely and so meaningful yet so thoughtful and compassionate.” Julia Perry

It is a masterpiece and I think everyone should buy one.” Ann Frampton

It has whimsical cycle poems, a few good pointers to how to know if something is not quite right, some wonderful illustrations by Jane Milne’s daughter and some rather chuckalicious bits too.” Sandhy Jones

I read it from cover to cover (couldn’t put it down). It really is a fabulous book, well done to everyone who had a part in it.” Sarah Cunningham

Open for business

At last! My waiting’s over and the Buy Now button has gone active (the setting up of which, by the way, was just about as challenging as the writing of the rhymes and the cycling of 100km round London in the pitch dark!) One Woman’s Verses vs Cancer is up for sale!

I did, for a fleeting moment, wonder whether I should hold off publicising that the book is now available as I’m hosting a ‘little light launch’ next Wednesday night in Stirling and it just seemed a bit back-to-front having a launch night after the Buy Now button has gone live!

However, I very quickly gave myself a slap and remembered that it’s not the next Harry Potter blockbuster or such like that we’re talking about here; it’s a little book of rhymes and articles whose main purpose is to raise funds and help spread the message about the signs and symptoms of three of the most common cancers to affect women.  The sooner it’s out there and available the sooner it can hopefully start to do just that.

So, it’s with no small amount of pleasure that I can now say CLICK HERE if you’d like to buy a copy of my little book today!

p.s. it’s worth noting that One Woman’s Verses vs Cancer will be available to buy locally in the coming weeks, initially at the launch then at some other events and venues (a list of which I’ll pin up here soon), saving you the postage costs incurred when you buy the book online.

A moment I’ll treasure

To some folk I’ll probably sound a bit deranged when I say  that the moment I reached out and lifted the copy proof of my little book from the printer’s hand this morning is one that I’ll always treasure.

It’s a very little book but it’s been written with a lot of heart and I’ll always treasure the moment that I saw the first hard copy.

IMG_6930It won’t be long now till I take delivery of a big bundle of the books; the ‘Buy Now’ button will be added to the website on Tuesday the 25th of March. After that I can get down to the serious job of selling as many copies as I possibly can to raise as much money as I possibly can for Women V Cancer.

I hope you’ll join me for the ride!

Thank you Rock and Road

I’ve had invaluable help from many people during my ‘first little book’ venture but I’d like to give one of the biggest nods of appreciation to my local independent bike shop, Rock and Road Cycles.

Rock and Road is a little shop with a big heart. I knew that already after receiving lots of good advice and support since discovering a passion for cycling last year, but it’s been confirmed by their more than generous offer to cover the printing costs of One Woman’s Verses vs Cancer.

The bigger cycling chain stores might sometimes be cheaper, but you’ll rarely receive the same kind of personal, passionate and accurate advice from them as you will from a small, independent shop. And you’ll rarely receive the sort of drop-in-anytime kind of back-up that a smaller shop is usually happy to offer.

I consider myself very lucky to have Rock and Road Cycles on my doorstep, but I’d encourage all cyclists to seek out and support their own local independent shops. They’re mostly owned and run by people who cycle, and genuinely enjoy sharing their knowledge and experience. That’s something that can sometimes be hard to find in the bigger chains.

So, thank you Rock and Road Cycles. I not only appreciate the fantastic job that you do in supporting cyclists in Central Scotland, but I also am so very grateful for your support in helping to make One Woman’s Verses vs Cancer happen.

Click on the logo to pay Rock and Road a virtual visit.

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A tick on my bucket list

I’m excited about the publication of my first little book. It’s only been a few months in the writing, but it’s been a good few years in the planning. I don’t mean that One Woman’s Verses vs Cancer has taken years to plan, what I mean is that the goal of holding a book in my hand that is ‘written by Jane Milne‘ has been some years in the planning.

‘Write a book’ has always been high on my bucket list and mid-life seems to have brought with it the permission I needed to just bloody well get on and do it.

It might not be the blockbusting novel that dreams are made of, but I’m proud of it all the same. My printer keeps referring to it as a booklet but I am defiant in my determination to refer to my first publication as a book. It may well only be 28 pages long and it may well not be perfect-bound but, according to the Oxford Dictionary, a book is:

‘A written or printed work consisting of pages glued or sewn together along one side and bound in covers…’

One Woman’s Verses vs Cancer is most definitely a written work consisting of pages (a small number, but still pages) held together along one side (with saddle stitch staples, but still held together) and bound in a cover (with a thick paper cover, but still a cover).

Yup, this particular item on my bucket list has almost been well and truly ticked. I’m hoping to take delivery of the finished article from my printer next week. In the meantime, here’s a little preview of what’s in store for readers of my first little book:

Keep Looking Up

It’s hard to keep ahead if you keep looking to the ground

All you’ll see is tarmac while your wheels are spinning round

Lift your head and raise your eyes above your handlebars

See how bright the sun is or the beauty in the stars.

Even in your darkest days while cycling through the rain

Looking up might see you through your treatment or your pain

Share the ride with people who will let you lead the way

Then you’ll find a clearer path to help you through each day

© Jane Milne 2014