I’ve written before about my three sisters, Gill, Ginge and Les, their energy, imagination and the hours they devote to raising money for charity (and having a bloody good time in the process). They obviously got a marketing gene which bypassed me (and probably my two brothers as well). Anyway, the reason I’m bringing them up again is because their work on flogging Rory the Dragon and Princess Daisy is an example of what we all need to do to shift more of our books.
In case you’re a new visitor I should explain that the book’s proceeds are going to charity. It’s dedicated to my grand-niece, Daisy Warn, who only lived for 16 weeks. During that time, she and her family were given wonderful care, love and support by the Children’s Hospice South West and, since then, the extended family has been continuing to express its thanks by fund-raising for the CHSW through a group called The Friends of Daisy Chain. I blogged about it in more detail in February.
OK, I wrote the story (which meant sitting on my bum in a warm room having a good time and laughing at my own jokes), my nephew Joe illustrated it (and knowing Joe, he probably quite enjoyed himself in the process, too), then I put it all together. But since then, the sisters have taken over and (although, as I said, they too enjoy themselves), they’ve been working very hard and, it seems, being successful. So, without asking her permission and therefore risking being sued by her – which would divert the book’s profits from the charity to some lawyers – I thought I’d just copy a couple of Gill’s recent emails to show you what I mean. So here they are.
March 10th. On Saturday we had a table at a sale in a local church – not much good financially but good in a networking way. Ginger’s suggestion was that we all wore black and used the bowler hats they had for the Cabaret dance at my 60th. These were decorated with a string of daisies and looked really good. We dressed the stall with balloons and all CHSW banners etc. We created quite a storm amongst the ladies who were manning the stalls (what’s that called – is it an oxymoron?) and about 30 people came up to us and said how much they liked the hats and how smart we looked etc. We only raised about £37.50 which was rubbish but the Herald photographer came up and asked for a photo shoot – well about 10 photos – how many constitute a ‘shoot’? We told her the story about the book and she took some more with us holding the books and was very interested. I said I’d send her a press release.
March 13th. Back from Tiverton where we met with about 80 people. Gave a small presentation and the fundraiser had made sure there was a book on every seat so they all had one to look at. We gave them a handout with the story and the details of all the money going to them etc. It was really well received and the fundraiser for South Somerset & Devon was taking orders while we were there. Some of the women read the book and we could see them laughing. During the presentation I made I asked them their opinion and they said they thought it was brilliant, and it was great to see them walking out with bundles of the book under their arms.
The area manager of the retail side came over and asked us about putting the books in the shops and displaying them properly etc – so that was good. Altogether a very positive day – it’s all looking good – we also have a table in the CHSW marquee at both the Devon & Cornwall County Shows – another good place for networking since it is mostly businesses that have marquees there as it’s very expensive to hire one. We could split our time between selling the books and going around trying to drum up sponsorship.
The book’s aimed at the age range 5-8. It’s £4.99 and if anyone wants a copy, please get in touch with Gill at
It’s wonderful to think that, thanks to all their hard work, the book’s going to make several hundred quid for the CHSW. Now all I need to do is con the sisters into doing the same thing for my other books where the profits will be ALL MINE..