SUNNE IN SPLENDOUR BOOK GIVEAWAY
SUNNE IN SPLENDOUR BOOK GIVEAWAY
When Pan-Macmillan, my British publisher, recently ran a book giveaway for Sunne on their website to coincide with Richard’s remarkable re-interment in Leicester, some of my readers felt left-out since it was open only to my British readers. I promised that I would hold one of my own for everyone as soon as I got the chance. It took a while, thanks to the antics of the Deadline Dragon and to my dealings with the Grim Reaper—I had to kill a character and since we do not know his fatal disease, I had to choose one and then run it past several good-natured doctor friends of mine. This happens surprisingly often, unless a character was thoughtful enough to die on the battlefield or in childbirth. Occasionally, a chronicler will actually know what illness killed someone and wins the hearts of historical novelists by writing it down. For example, we know that Henry II’s son, Hal, AKA the Young King, died of dehydration caused by dysentery. Henry II most likely died of septicemia. The Lionheart died of gangrene and I’ve always thought that Edward IV caught a fatal case of pneumonia, which was a deadly disease in the MA—and still is in many areas of the world today. The Black Prince seems to have died of cancer, as did Llywelyn Fawr’s son, Davydd. I usually attempt to choose a disease that was a common cause of medieval deaths; for example, peritonitis for Joanna’s husband, the King of Sicily, typhus for John the Scot, Earl of Chester, and pneumonia for Llywelyn’s Joanna. This latest Grim Reaper brought typhoid into my last chapter, which was known as hectic fever back then.
I did not mean to go off on such a morbid tangent—sorry. I am still marveling at the events in Leicester, turning a controversial medieval king into a media rock star; who could ever have predicted that? So I am giving away a signed hardcover copy of Sunne, brought out by Macmillan in September, 2013 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Sunne’s publication in the UK—and no, I never imagined that Sunne would still be so popular and attracting new readers, some of them not even born when I was working on Sunne. In order to be eligible, you simply have to post a comment on this blog. Anyone on the planet can enter, and the winner will get the hardcover edition. I am offering a consolation prize, too, a copy of the new British paperback edition of Sunne. I would also have offered a copy of the American paperback of Sunne, but it does not have the new Author’s Note that I wrote about the discovery of Richard’s lost grave or the corrections and minor dialogue changes that I made in the hardcover edition of Sunne. For that, you must buy the e-book edition, and I haven’t yet figured out a way to sign a Kindle—although I was once asked to autograph a Kindle cover on a book tour!
Speaking of book tours, many writers fear that they are on the endangered species list. Publishers have been cutting back, focusing more on regional tours if they do book tours at all. The turmoil in publishing plays a role in this, the Internet even more so. It is so much easier to reach out to readers than it was even ten years ago, thanks to social media like Facebook, Goodreads, and Twitter, just to name a few. I admit I have not ventured onto Twitter myself; a woman who writes 800 page books does not take naturally to expressing herself in just 140 characters—and yes, there are actually on-line calculators for that very purpose. I am curious; how many of you use Twitter? Do you think writers should use it? Would you follow your favorite writers on Twitter?
And while we are at it, what do you all think about book tours? Would you enjoy going to a bookstore to attend a book signing and reading? I know that some publishers think book tours will eventually become obsolete, believing that there are more efficient means today of promoting a book. I do not agree, for I would really miss these opportunities to meet my readers, especially those I have been interacting with on Facebook on a daily basis. But then it is difficult to imagine what changes lie ahead for the publishing industry. It has certainly been transformed in the thirty-three years that I’ve been a published writer. Who knows what it will be like in another thirty-three years. It has even been suggested that books could disappear entirely, at least in their present formats. If that does ever happen, I hope I’ll be dead by then!
Okay, the book drawing is officially open.
April 21, 20015