Book Marketing – Review.


How hard is it to market your own books. No that wasn’t a question, more a gripe, an observation.

It’s all very well someone else singing your praises, in the form of reviews in my case, but having to do-it-yourself. Tastes Manky.

You’d think that a nonentity writing a memoir was ego enough and, that someone like that would find it easy to self congratulate, big-up and brag in order to sell books. You’d be wrong.

It turns my stomach reading some of the cringeworthy boasts I am compelled to write. Especially when I’m all about selling truths, I mean.. . . .


BE WARNED! By not reading these, you’re seriously missing out.

Really!?  Do people even read these tag-line claims. Sales figures tell me, no. Still I don’t know how I’m supposed to reach an audience. So I potter on. I started to write one of those: Twenty Five Things You May Not Know About Me.  But I’ve already divulged two memoirs worth and besides… a sheep licking my hand the other day and being slightly afraid… I have nothing new or interesting to say.   😉

I try to catch people’s attention with flashy bright graphics. AND… I think to date I’ve made more picture adverts than I’ve sold books.

I’d say forgetting; the tarnished image of self published indies. The big no-no of making your own book cover. Not joining Amazon’s KDP to give your work away for free and refusing point-blank to fall into paying for advertising. I have my work cut out if I’m ever going to reach the levels of my contemporaries.

I’m often exhausted by my efforts, feel as if I’m running up a giant mound of rubble which is shifting beneath my feet. After three years and two books and countless levels of Candy Crush, I have discovered that I write because it’s what I am. What I’ve choose to be. I write because I have a lot to say.

AND now when I’m on a downer I discover a new FIVE STAR REVIEW.  So here it is…



Phillip Crawford Jr. reviewed Paulyanna International Rent-boy

“I never want anything, it’s easy / You buy whatever I need / But look at my hopes, look at my dreams” — Pet Shop Boys, “Rent”

Paulyanna is a well-crafted memoir of a London-based sex worker in the 1990s during his twenties, and it surprised me in the loveliest way. I was expecting a gritty story from a jaded narrator detailing sexual encounters fueled by an existential imperative — perhaps in the style of City of Night by John Rechy — but the endearing Lovell offers so much more.

Sure, there are enough accounts of the rentboy trade to establish convincingly that Lovell has been around the block. For example, in describing “a small ramshackle bar called Hunters” in Los Angeles he writes:

It had sawdust on the floor. A total dive where the bar-staff often outnumbered the clients. Milling around outside were a few unsavoury-looking characters, young vagabond drug-addled rent-boys, some of whom wore only scruffy cut-off denim shorts and walked barefoot as they paraded up and down the boulevard.

However, the book’s soul is the author’s transformation. Lovell had a hardluck childhood which was a bit Dickensian, and upon reaching the big city as a young man turns to sex work for the easy money. And heck, for many the rentboy is a revered archetype in the gay psyche. Over time Lovell discovers talents to offer the world other than hustling punters. He has no moral qualms about sex work which provided him with some adventure and helped him get by, and yet it was other choices which would fulfill his dreams. As Shawn Colvin sings in “New Thing Now”: “Gee, it’s good to see a dream come true.”

Paulyanna is more than good writing; it’s genuinely human. author page


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