Well, the book launch of Medieval Gower Stories on Saturday went even better than I hoped. I normally hold my book launches in the Oxfam Bookshop, which means you have to attract your own audience, and can be hit and miss. Saturday was the Local History Book Fair at Swansea Museum, and by holding it there I had a captive audience. The organiser had only set out about 20 chairs and they had to find some more, which was great.
I told the story of how I came to write my first book Alina, The White Lady of Oystermouth, from an initial interest in Swansea Castle and the intervention of my stroke. That gave me time to think about my research and turn it into a book. The success of Alina led me to further research Alina’s family tree and produce my second book, Broken Reed: The Lords of Gower and King John, set a century earlier. I expanded on my King John research to write The Magna Carta Story: The Layman’s Guide to the Great Charter to coincide with the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta in 2015. This new book is a collection of ten stories from my research that all have a link to Gower, though sometimes a tenuous one. Then I told them what each story was about, without giving too much away.
The organiser apologised that because of my late booking, my table was away from all the other stalls, in the room where the talks were being given, but that meant I was able to catch all the people attending each talk. After my talk the table was ideally positioned for everyone to swarm round and buy the book.
I sold over 30 books, including a few of my older books, which was an amazing result. Here is my friend Anthea looking very pleased with her purchase. Thanks to my daughter Angharad for taking the photos.
So, the book is launched and I hope I have enough stock left for the Carmarthen Book Fair in a couple of weeks, which is a nice dilemma. All the latest history blog posts have been about Medieval Gower Stories, but now I shall have to get back to finding interesting tidbits for you every week. Don’t forget that you can join my history mailing list and get a newsletter every month which includes links to my latest blog posts – and you get a free book Life in a Medieval Castle when you sign up.
Ann Marie Thomas is the author of four medieval history books, a surprisingly cheerful poetry collection about her 2010 stroke, and the science fiction series Flight of the Kestrel. Book one, Intruders, is out now. Follow her at http://eepurl.com/bbOsyz