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Charging over RRP

Is it just me who finds it scandalous that there are organisations and individuals selling my books on-line for prices in excess of the RRP?
 
As an author my royalties are defined by my contract so regardless of what the book is sold for I get x. So, when a book is sold above RRP, all the extra money is going to the retailer.
 
What's more these are on-line retailers. They don't have the argument that they have staff to pay or a premises to maintain in a costly retail centre.
 
It quite frankly disgusts me that these people are making money off the back of my hard work. Charging up to the RRP is fine but above it is simply not on. If you genuinely cannot afford to sell it at RRP then please don't sell it at all.

Progress update

My new book on the Undershaw years is approaching 3000 words long. I have made some interesting discoveries and formed some interesting theories. I can say no more at present as I desire to keep my powder dry.
 
I am also more or less settled on its title but, as I desire to retain the right to change it, I shall not reveal it.
 
A.

What a day

Well Saturday was a curious day. It began at the unworldly hour of 5.30am when I discovered that my on-line email account had been hacked overnight and that emails had been sent to my entire address book. To add insult to injury the people (or program) responsible had proceeded to empty my sent items folder thus robbing me of over 1500 sent emails.

Fortunately I was able to recover these with the help of my provider's on-line tech support.

Once that was sorted there was the business of my book signing.

This was not a success. Not only was the store not prepared for me when I arrived but they were also displaying the wrong times for the signing. Despite this, and the fact that they set me up behind a pillar with no backdrop, I did manage to sell some books. However the total count was a mere five. I also signed eighteen to go on the shelves.

Of course it was the glorious weather that did me the most damage. After all, when there's such sun to be had why would you browse a bookshop?

Signing - "The Norwood Author"

Well tomorrow brings my signing sesssion for "The Norwood Author" at Croydon Waterstones. Despite what their website says I shall be there from 11am-1pm.
 
These events always make me nervous. Will anyone turn up? How many copies will I sign? Questions, questions :-)
 
Pictures to follow after the event.
 
A.

What's in a name?

Word is starting to travel regarding my decision to write a book on Arthur Conan Doyle's Undershaw years. The comments that have found their way back to me have been overwhelmingly positive. One lady informed me that she had 'squealed with delight' in the middle of her office upon reading the news and was struggling to explain her conduct to her colleagues.
 
However one thing seems to preoccupy all those who have come back to me - my choice of title. Now I have a couple in mind at present and have all but settled on one of them. At this stage though I have no desire to reveal anything. So - kind people - please stop asking.
 
Lynn Gale - what have you got me into?
 
A.

A gentle reminder

For those who don't already know, I am signing copies of "The Norwood Author" at Waterstones in Croydon this Saturday (22nd) between 11am and 1pm.
 
See you there...

The old fire is back

Yesterday I drafted the introduction to my next book. This was easy as it was just a personal account of how the idea came into being. Today saw me begin my research efforts with a dig into some of the books within my own collection.
 
In short, I am once again fired up.

Work has begun

I sometimes wonder why I do such bad things to myself. Yesterday I bought two notebooks. Nothing all too remarkable about that you might say but for me it is significant. Over the past three years I have only used notebooks for one purpose - to store my research for my books. So what does the fact that I've bought two notebooks mean?

Yes it means that I have committed myself to yet another book. I am going to do the Undershaw book. As I write, I have just completed the introduction.

A.

Raffle winner

Congratulations to Mrs English who won the signed set of my three books at the Save Undershaw event on Saturday 15th May.

Undershaw book

Sunday afternoon found me at the Criterion Restaurant with my wife (see earlier post). Over the course of the meal SHSL President Guy Marriot added his voice to those suggesting that I examine the idea of writing a book about Arthur Conan Doyle's years at Undershaw. This now makes about half a dozen people who have suggested that I look at it. This is of course very flattering as it clearly implies a belief on the part of those people that I am up to the task.

I therefore declare that I shall look into it. This should not be taken as a guarantee that I will do it however. If I do decide to do it said book would not be likely to emerge for one or two years.

Undershaw Blog entry re my good self

Here is the link to the Undershaw blog entry about yours truly.
 
http://undershawhelp.blogspot.com/2010/05/alistair-duncan.html

Goal achieved

Today I finally dined in the Criterion Restaurant. This is a major thing for any Sherlockian as it is the place where Dr Watson's journey began in A Study in Scarlet.

A Golden Evening

Last night saw the AGM of the Sherlock Holmes Society of London. This took place at the National Liberal Club on the Embankment in London.

At the conclusion of the main agenda it was time to announce the winner of the 2nd Tony and Freda Howlett Award. This award came into being in 2009 and recognises published Sherlockian / Doylean works written by society members. Yours truly was gratified to discover that "Close to Holmes" (which you can see me holding on the left) had been shortlisted for the award. Alas it went elsewhere on this occasion but I am nonetheless very flattered to have been shortlisted.

Then came the SHSL Eggheads competition. The Eggheads consisted of Guy Marriot, Society President; Roger Johnson, Co-Editor of the Society Journal; Heather Owen, his fellow Co-Editor; and finally Catherine Cooke the society's events secretary. A formidable line-up indeed.

There were two teams of challengers. The first team defeated some Eggheads but ultimately lost in the final round. Then came the turn of my team - The Old Mycroftians.

We won all our rounds, in my case I got all three of my questions correct in the round "The Fair Sex" (although I had to take a guess at one question). At the end it was down to Catherine Cooke to defend the Eggheads earlier win. Despite her gallant efforts we prevailed. The closing round of the competition was presided over by Kevin Ashman from the real Eggheads team on the BBC.

Eggheads beckons

On Friday just gone I came down with a heavy cold which I am still trying to shake off. Its timing could not be worse as the Sherlock Holmes Society of London's AGM is this Thursday and I need to be fit for the Eggheads competition.
 
At present I feel I am on the mend but the next obvious concern is that it will get its claws into the missus. If it does she'll be coming down with the worst of it at precisely the wrong time.
 
Fingers crossed that she makes it.
 
A.

MX Publishing Charity Campaign

I have reported before on the campaign to save Undershaw, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's former Hindhead home, from the attention of developers. I have now taken an extra step in my support for this campaign.
 
If you buy any of my books direct from the MX Publishing website and checkout using the promotional code 'Undershaw' a donation of £1.50 per book will be made to the Undershaw Preservation Trust.
 
Please check out the following link for further details:
 
http://www.mxpublishing.co.uk/engine/shop/page/Partners/Save+Undershaw+Campaign
 
Please note that purchases of my books through any other site will not make a donation.