PG 6 Unraveling Amazonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s new review policy and its possible effects on bloggers
PG 8 EDITOR PETER SALMON MAKES THE CASE THAT GREAT WRITING TAKES GREAT READING
PG 20 Hayley radford explores the curious case of jt leroy and identity in fiction
NEW EDITION CONTEMPORARY
ISSUE 31, DECEMBER 2016
clink street brings you twelve days of your favourite authors for the holidays but only one partirdge in a pear tree
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HAPPENI NGS Dec. - Feb.
News In Brief 5
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Merry Christmas, happy New Year and welcome to the December 2016 issue of New Edition, our publishing magazine for authors. This quarter, editor and author Peter Salmon encourages authors to walk before they run and read before they write in Editorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Note. Clink Street authors make their own writing resolutions for the coming new year. Author Matthew Redford says that a careful reading of your own work is essential. And Hayley Radford examines the need for fact in fiction. All that plus an investigation into Amazonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s new review policy, tips for creating the new you in 2017 and more!
- Josh Hamel, Editor of New Edition Magazine 3
HAPPENI N GS December 7-10|
New Literature From Europe Festival 2016
The Center for Fiction, New York www.centerforfiction.org/calendar/ How can a writer best change the hearts and minds of readers when they believe strongly about a social or political issue, how do translators help adapt writers’ ideas for different cultures, and how does a book’s cover add meaning and impact to the message? The Writing to Change Hearts and Minds will be just one panel featuring such discussion at the New Literature from Europe Festival 2016, now in its 13th year
Young Adult Keller Book Festival
Keller, Texas www.yakfestkisd.weebly.com/ A chance for teens to connect with award winning young adult authors, in a free one day event. Featuring panel discussions, various writing workshops including storytelling, an “Escape Hatch” where attendees can hang out with the authors and opportunities to buy the books from the thirty plus featured authors.
25-26| The Riverside Dickens Festival
Riverside, California www.dickensfest.com/ Festival celebrating the life and times of Charles Dickens, this is a festival taking place in and around the Riverside area of California. In addition to lectures and vendors, see Victorian England come alive with events such as the Authors salon where writers of the era come alive before your eyes, parasol duelling, a Victorian fashion show, Mr. Fezziwig’s Ball, and the Grand Dickens Parade. While children can experience Oliver’s Alley for a tea party.
News In Brief BAME Prize lacks expected number of submissions The £1,000 BAME Prize was launched in February to “celebrate the achievements of British writers of colour” after the 2015 Writing the Future report was released, though fewer than expected publishers have taken advantage of the new contest. The report showed how publishing in the UK isn’t particularly diverse at all, and that many BAME (Black, Asian and minority ethnic) struggle to get agents, or published unless they write a book that is “authentically black or Asian”. The prize is open to all genres including graphic novels, children’s books, poetry, fiction, nonfiction, YA and short stories, and also is open to self-published writers. Yet despite this wide criteria, Sunny Singh, author and chair of judges for the Jhalak prize has said the number of submissions so far has been “shockingly low”. Speaking at the Building Inclusivity in Publishing conference in November, Singh said, “We made
the prize as possibly inclusive as we could. I think particularly because of that I find submissions shockingly low. The bulk are from small presses. Big publishers have sent in fewer but have also done something quite intriguing - and sent in the biggest writers. I don’t think Zadie Smith needs the exposure.” She went on to say, “Big publishers are letting indies do heavy lifting. They pass off the hard work and once there is a hit they poach. Where we stand today - inclusivity is no longer a political stance or ideological agenda, it’s a moral issue. If we can’t hear stories of each other’s, we cannot be fully human. That means everyone needs to do the heavy lifting. You can’t just leave it to the small presses…”
New National Measurement of Reading called for
First half of 2016 leads to downturn of US Publishers profits
Following this summer’s SATs results showing a sharp decline in 11 year olds reading at the expected level for their age, falling from 80% in 2015 to 66% in 2016, leading charities and educational organisations, including The Reading Agency and coalition Read On, Get On have announced a new measurement of children’s reading in primary schools. This new measurement will take into account the range of skills that are required to develop a love of reading, and to read well. This recommendation is part of a new strategy by the Read On, Get On campaign which aims to get every child leaving primary school to read well by 2025. A new 10 point strategy has been revealed in a report compiled by the National Literary Trust and Save the Children. According to the report “The national curriculum now incorporates requirements to support children’s enjoyment of reading, as well as decoding and comprehension skills, but assessment at the end of primary school covers only comprehension skills.” “We need a stronger focus on affective reading processes – motivation, enjoyment of books and engagement with languages and stories… therefore one of our key aims is to campaign for and support the development of a series of measure which will bring us closer to this understanding.”
Latest statistics from the Association of American Publishers (AAP) have shown that US publisher’s revenues have fallen by 3.4% year-onyear to $5.73bn for the first half of 2016. The monthly AAP Statshot for June, showed that although revenues were starting to gain, it wasn’t enough to counter the declines from earlier in the year, and the overall category sales have decreased 1.1% in the first half of 2016. The AAP Statshot includes sales from over 1,200 publishers and tracks all categories including trade fiction, non-fiction and children’s books, has shown that the largest gains have come from religious presses which saw a growth of 54.6%, which is an ‘unusually high’ percentage compared to the same period in 2015. Major publishers in the United States have also been experiencing massive declines in eBook sales for the first half of 2016 for the second year in a row. Sales of eBooks were down 20%. This continued downward trend of eBooks can be seen as a good thing for the industry though, as over the same time period paperback sales are up 8.8%, hardcover sales up 0.9% and audio books sales are increased by 32.3%.
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Reviews on Review
With Amazon’s change of policy for reviews comes confusion for many authors and bloggers over what they will and won’t be able to post. Rachel Gilbey tries to decipher exactly what has changed and checks the temperature of those who could be most affected.
In early October Amazon made a policy change that could have a significant impact on all industries: they took the controversial step of banning “incentivised reviews” for products after their research showed that reviews that has been incentivised generally came out half a star higher than when the reviewer had purchased the product themselves. From Amazon. Amazon’s Vine programme - which essentially is a band of their own most trusted reviewers, who are encouraged to post and comment at will - will still operate. Amazon insists that it doesn’t try to influence the reviewers opinions, not insisting on positive or even any reviews for the products being offered. It also claims to vet the reviewers, only invited members that are deemed, by Amazon, to be trustworthy and reputable. Amazon has historically prohibited reviews in exchange for compensation, even going as far as to sue businesses that pay for fake reviews and the reviewers who write them. Until now though companies were allowed to offer products to people in exchange for an honest, fair and impartial review. Doubts are being raised through research from ReviewMeta of over seven million reviews, which has hinted towards a lack of partiality on the part of reviewers. Consumers are also thought to be losing trust in reviewer’s opinions of such products, if they feel they haven’t purchased them directly or have been given them for free. Chee Chew, VP, Customer Experience at Amazon released a further update on the policy, stating that, “The (above) changes will apply to product categories other than books. We will continue to allow the ageold practice of providing advance review copies of books.” But the question remains; for how long? So much of the publishing industry is now govern by Amazon’s benevolence, or indeed, the lack of it. Book reviewers and writers and publishers remain confused and their relationships with one another via Amazon uncertain. Generally no one is quite sure what reviews or specific wording Amazon may yet still take objection to from book reviewers. Or whether books will eventually be reclassified into the product category. In another recent change by Amazon, there is now a minimum purchase value applied to be even eligible to post reviews about products: “you must have spent at least $50 on Amazon.com using a valid credit or debit card. Prime subscriptions and promotional discounts don’t qualify towards the $50 minimum” this is stated on the Amazon Community Guidelines page. For authors from smaller traditional imprints, indies and those self publishing the uncertainty is troubling. It’s already hard to get noticed online amid the white noise of new titles, but now asking for a review may start leading down a commercial dead end. We asked some of our regular, loyal and muchloved book bloggers who regularly take part in our author blog tours for their thoughts.
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“I have a horrible feeling their change in policy is simply to try to force us all to buy our books there as opposed to another seller.” said Linda Hill of Linda’s Book Bag. “A possible response might be for publishers to have their own review sites where reviews can be posted along the lines of Amazon with the full range represented. I do, however, appreciate that this would be costly and probably viewed with suspicion. Maybe we need a totally separate Trip Adviser style site for books?” Good idea Linda! Claire from Yet Another Blogging Mummy commented, “On reading the articles, I did notice it related to Amazon.com, so I also looked up the guidelines on Amazon.co.uk and found they don’t appear to have made a similar change, although I expect it may follow. At least books have been excluded from this blanket ban. Most of my Amazon reviews are for books. I especially feel it reaches a wider audience for indie authors than my blog reach, so it would be a shame if it is extended to encompass books.” Ali of The Dragon Slayer had this to say: “I believe anyone who genuinely enjoys (or maybe not) a product whether it be a book or anything else should be eligible to leave feedback. I tend to glimpse feedback before purchasing myself. There are several bloggers that I respect and believe their reviews to be close to my choice so that certainly helps me. I do feel that any incentivised posts are possibly biased towards the positive. Banning is a strong solution but if I was receiving payment, I would feel obliged to write a glowing review rather than an honest one. The advantage of being non-paid is I/We can maintain integrity; no author is going to improve or grow without some constructive criticism if needed.” Paid posts are already largely discredited, although Kirkus reviews does charge authors who are self publishing to review their work. Buy sharing a complimentary copy of a book is an age-old, tried and tested method of generating word of mouth sales. And frankly, it’s that very concept that Amazon was built on in the first place. So what next? Well, for the time being at least, as an author or publisher, we’re recommend abiding by the following best practice rules: When you are offering your new Advanced Review Copy to potential reviewers, make it crystal clear that you are hoping for a review on Amazon, instead of requiring one in exchange for the book. For reviewers, previously the commonly accepted disclaimer was, “I received a free copy in exchange for a review”, but under the new Amazon policy that would fall into incentivised review territory, and thus caution should be applied. The new suggested boiler plate is, “I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader’s Copy of this book.” Amazon are the single biggest, most aggressive, most dominant force in the publishing industry, and no one wants - or can afford - to fall foul of their shifting rules and policy changes, but their latest one is leaving everyone erring on the side of caution, and scratching their heads in bewilderment.
NEW EDITION, DECEMBER 2016
Editor’s Note On Reading
You wouldn’t try to perform surgery without going to medical school first, right? Then why would you expect to write a book without doing your homework first? Editor and author Peter Salmon pleads his case for reading as an essential prerequisite to writing.
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ne of the things that baffles me more than anything in the world is people don’t read books, but want to write them. Actually, let me start again. One of the things that baffles me more than anything in the world is simply people who don’t read books. I mean, who are these people? I don’t like to use the words ‘idiots’ to describe people, but needs must. All I can do is tell it like it is. There has been a lot of research done into the matter and while I’m not one to quote ‘statistics’, the evidence is clear. people who read are more intelligent. They have greater empathy. They are better at problem solving. The have greater emotional acuity. They are better looking. They smell nicer. And they are much, much better lovers. That anyone doesn’t read books is baffling, given all of these obvious advantages. But the thing that baffles me more than anything in the world, that is even more bafflingly baffling than just not reading books (‘idiots!’) is people who don’t read books who then try and write them. Baffling! Really, really baffling. I do a lot of editing and teaching, across a range of genres and levels of ability, and grow more and more appalled at the number of these people who exist among us (I know I’m not referring to you, good reader – the pile of books beside your bed shows what an avid reader you are, and you would have finished them all by now if you weren’t so busy being a much better lover than a non-book reader). I find myself lying awake at night, when I’m not reading or making love, wondering what is going on in their collective head. I guess their theory is that, despite the millions of books that have been written in the roughly 6000 years since Barry the Sumerian put the first glyph on a hunk of limestone, there is absolutely nothing to be learned from any of them. After all, it’s just words, innit? We all use them. So a book is just a bunch of them put in order. Simple. As I’m sure you can guess, this is, for me, a complete anathema. First of all, books are the most tremendous objects in the world – within them lie worlds, ideas, glories, tragedies, and all that other stuff that you don’t necessarily get plonked down on the 18.22 to Swindon each night. (They are also weapons of war against the growing tide of folly that threatens to overwhelm us all, but that’s another story, and if you’re ever lucky enough to be stuck at a party talking to me I’ll be happy to chat to you about it, if you have three or four hours and can just have the decency to be quiet.) But second – for the would be author – they
have been written by a huge number of people who have tried, failed, tried again, failed better, found new ways of doing things, rediscovered old ways of doing things, worked out that if you tell the story through the eyes of B rather than A then theme C actually works better. They have shaped language, been shaped by it, embraced melodrama, battled against melodrama, found how to shift time and narrative, found out how to make it stick. They have written works that uses language so spare you could cut glass with it, and language so lavish you could wear it as a hat. To take an example. I’ve been really struggling with a chapter in the book I’m writing at the moment. The chapter is a complete bastard – I’ve thrown it into the air so many times to watch it fly, only to see it plummet back to earth in a mass of beak and feathers. I hate the damn thing. But my character has to get from point A to point B, physically and emotionally, so I’m stuck with it. Meanwhile, I’ve been reading a book called The Family Mashber but an author called Der Nister. Picked it up second hand. Had never heard of it. Written in the 1930s, set in Berdychiv, which the internet tells me is in Ukraine. A Jewish epic. Life, love and death. Glorious stuff. The book is brilliant, but that’s not what concerns us. In one chapter there is a major scene between two characters, which we have been waiting for. But Der Nister doesn’t start with
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them. he starts with a minor character, outs the key characters in the background. To use film language, he puts the camera where we don’t expect it. The key conversation happens, but the main thing we encounter is the minor character watching the discussion in the distance. The minor character displays confusion, has opinions, drinks tea. the scene unfolds in a way that is utterly different to what is expected, and makes us more tense because we cannot hear the conversation. It is brilliant. So I’ve nicked it. That’s how to write my chapter. I’d been focussing too much on my main character, his anguish and all that stuff, and it was all turning to melodrama. Don’t have a close up on him going a bit mad. Have a close up on the family downstairs who wonder what is going on up there. Move the camera somewhere unexpected. A little lesson that I couldn’t have thunk of. thank you, Der Nister, whoever you are. Oh, and don’t worry about nicking stuff. That’s what writers do. Sure, maybe hold off cutting and pasting whole chunks of other books, but technique-wise, go for your life. T S Eliot famously said ‘good writers borrow, great writers steal’. But bad writers do nothing, usually because they haven’t read anything, so there’s nothing to steal. Because here’s a simple truth of the editing/ teaching world – you can ALWAYS tell the writings of someone who doesn’t read. If they are writing poetry, the poems ALWAYS sound like diary dump, or like a series of heart-rending banalities. If they are writing novels, you can hear the pounding as very simple things you come to know how to do deftly by reading are hammered into place. The only thing louder is the sound of me groaning as I read the first page. So – keep going on writing courses, as it keeps me in a job. But if you really want to learn how to write books, then for the love of God, for the love of all things decent, please please please make sure you read books too. Because, after all, if you aren’t really interested in buying books and reading them, then why should anyone be interested in buying and reading yours? Heading off to make love now. Later dudes. Peter Salmon is an Australian writer and editor living in the UK. His first novel, The Coffee Story (Sceptre, 2011), was a New Statesman Book of the Year. He has written frequently for TV and radio, and for broadsheets including the Guardian and the Sydney Review of Books.
Whether publishing your next book or just setting a goal of writing everyday, the ringing in of another new year means looking forward to the future. With 2016 almost in the books, Clink Street authors set their own writing resolutions for the next year in print.
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Karen Hoyle New Year is a great time for me as two years ago I committed to writing a children’s book series containing five books. I have now completed two of the five books and every February is set aside to write the next in the series. As simple as that sounds it does mean I need to spend the other eleven months thinking about the series layout as a whole and what will go into the next book. My resolution for 2017 is to allow the imaginations of my existing readers to play a role in building the story for the next books. I plan to do more school visits and conduct online discussion to see what children would like to happen in the books. I have already had both great and hilarious responses and this is a valuable feedback mechanism for my books as a whole. Writing every day does not work for me, thinking every day does and then allowing time for those thoughts to develop is really important. I write in a solid period of time non-stop, so my other resolution has to be to clear my writing time of all other distractions. I choose February because my birthday is in that month and if I write the book before my birthday I can then happily celebrate both birthday and the book
being completed. The Adventures of Austin the Cornish Miner: The Morgawr and the Bad Knockers by Karen M. Hoyle (published by Clink Street Publishing 18th October 2016 RRP £5.99 paperback, £2.99 ebook)
Paola Pica My resolution for 2017 consists of seeing all my books published by the end of the coming year. One year might not be a long enough time for seeing my dream come true about the six finished books and the one in process, but I’ll try hard!”Errors of Evaluation by Paola Pica (published 26th July 2016 by Clink Street Publishing, RRP £6.99 paperback, £2.99 ebook).
Monika Jephcott Thomas My New Year’s resolution is usually not to make New Year’s resolutions. I like to think I am resolving to improve myself and the world around me throughout the year. Resolutions are all about trying to be selfdisciplined, of course, and if there’s one thing a writer has to be it’s self-disciplined. This I have to do on an every day basis to manage both my work as the Chief
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Executive of an International organisation and my time for writing. I used to think my dream would be just to be a writer . Unlike in business with no one looking over your shoulder managing you and only a one minute commute downstairs to the office, where onesies are acceptable work wear, it did seem me like the dream job. However, these very same pros can also be cons. It is very easy to turn into a slob, not get dressed for days, not leave the house for days and, in some desperate cases, watch a hell of a lot of TV box office sets instead of writing that next best-seller. Getting out and about in life is essential. If you’re only sitting in front of the laptop what can you write about except a writer who sits in front of the laptop? However it is difficult to find the right balance and have some time left for me and family. So perhaps my New Year’s resolution, before I embark on writing the sequel to my debut novel Fifteen Words, is in fact to find a better work/leisure balance and do more actual living, so when it comes to writing, as of course it must, my novel will be all the more full of life and depth. Fifteen Words by Monika Jephcott Thomas (published by Clink Street Publishing, 22nd November, 2016, RRP £6.99 paperback, £2.99 ebook).
Andy Blackman Well I did it, I published my first book For the Love of Grace, which I must admit was brilliant when I finally had the published copy in my hand I felt quite emotional
once the realisation hit me, I had finally done it. The hardest part of writing your first book, was actually putting it up for public scrutiny, while writing it is personal and belongs to you, but once published you are open to criticism. So for 2017 I am going to go through the whole emotional process again and publish my second book I had always had in my mind that For the Love of Grace would be a trilogy, so the second book is call The Second Son this book is about the life and rise of Grenville Hampton who readers from the first book will know is one of the main characters, and of course the third book and the final one in the trilogy which is called A Plan for Vengeance, which bring both the first two book to a dramatic conclusion, hopefully this can be completed as well in 2017, so next year is going to be a busy time in writing terms for me, but The Second Son will be ready for publication early in 2017. For the Love of Grace (published by Clink Street Publishing 27th September 2016 RRP £7.99 paperback, £3.99 ebook).
AW Rock Resolution (dictionary definition): a decision to do something or to behave in a certain manner. I make resolutions on a daily basis – I resolve that I must work and achieve a certain amount - but these
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decisions inflict pressure to get it done, and I ask myself if this is constructive? A New Year’s resolution can involve both psychological and physical commitments. It might be a mental promise to be less selfish. Or a physical pledge to exercise every day. Whatever the undertaking, how long is it possible to maintain a New Year resolution? A day, a week, a month, or the whole year until the next year’s decision? What is the value of a New Year’s resolution if the resolver does not keep it? The outcome is nearly always failure – so what is the point? Is the failure to keep it up a failure? Or is it acceptance of being human and fallible? This year my resolution will be not to make a New Year’s resolution in the fear that I will not keep it. He wanted to celebrate New Year, So decided to have a large beer, Having drunk that and more, He fell on the floor, With no resolution to fear. Soho Honey by AW. Rock (published by Clink Street Publishing 5th May 2016 RRP £10.99 paperback, £4.99 ebook).
Few days ago, I bought a journal for year 2017 and the cover says: “It’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.” I decided it will be my New Year’s resolution #1. Sure, I have goals as the publishing the third children’s book of a series Be Careful – Home and expand also on the market of German speaking countries but I don’t want to forget also about enjoying
life. My books are about a serious topic: safety of children in the household. I was so much into it I spend every free minute last months working on the books, connecting with parents on social media, creating campaigns, writing PR articles, etc. that I forgot sometimes to live. Being here for that moment with children in my care and spending more time with my family, friends, even strangers. That’s why my New Year’s resolution will sound kind of paradoxical but I want less to write, type, browse and more breath, feel, move, know…live. Sharp Things and Hot Things by Kriss Keller (published by Clink Street, 25th October RRP £6.99 paperback, £2.99 ebook).
Tony Halker I have a hierarchy of needs and have evolved a hierarchy of Resolutions; some of which relate to the basic needs. Many are private! I do resolve not just to write but to strive to write well, better with each chapter. To write well I must live well, developing an open mind. To do so I have to be be stimulated, gaining and relishing new experience; I must be open to difference in others, allowing challenge to my own beliefs and perceptions of the world. That is the hardest thing! Physics teaches us that limited human sensors do not enable us to see much of reality in this universe. Most of us have the same limited sensors when it comes to other people, their values and lives. I wish to write in a way that provides more than just a quick high, or fills time for the reader, I need to listen and understand others better, to seek out lives different from my own. I resolve to finish my sequel to The Learn, ensuring it is better in every way. I will also eat more olives stuffed with lemon while consuming more British craft beer. I am still not sure whether I make Resolutions or if they find and direct me? The Learn by Tony Halker (published by Clink Street Publishing 29th September 2016 RRP £8.99
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paperback, £3.99 ebook).
Tracy Ogali With 2017 fast approaching my thoughts turn to what the New Year brings and what I am hoping to achieve with my writing. Before the publication of my book Afterlife in 2016 I had already planned to write two further books. My writing time in 2017 will be to gather up the notes that I have made in my journals over the past year and begin working on book two within the Afterlife trilogy. My aim is to finish my second book at the end of the year, ready for a 2018 publication. Writing is my meditation I love the process, so it is a case of making time. I prefer to be alone. So once my children are at school or in bed that’s the perfect time to get to work. Make a cup of coffee and sit at my laptop. Whatever doesn’t get done during my alone time, I will leave for the following day. My resolution will be to at least get some words down on the page each day. Even if it’s: “I have no good ideas today.” At least the intention will be there! I trust that the inspiration will come. These are the days that are the most productive. Afterlife by Tracy Ogali (published 15th July 2016 by Clink Street Publishing, RRP £6.99 paperback, £2.99 ebook).
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Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s nothing better than an early Christmas present, so for the beginning of December, weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re teaming up with some of our favourite authors and bloggers to bring readers the first 12 Days of Clink Street. Featuring interviews, original short stories and more, be sure to follow along throughout and spread the good cheer far and wide. 16
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NEW EDITION, DECEMBER 2016
Food For Thought It never hurts to take a second look. Author Matthew Redford argues that self-editing should be a part of every writer’s process and proves a a careful reread can be invaluable.
have come to the conclusion that while everyone has their own distinct writing style, and their own way of getting the creative juices flowing, every author no matter how successful, has to do one basic thing carefully. Reading. We’ve all done it. You’re in a rush, the pressure is on and you start to skim read an email, a letter, an invitation. And sure enough, your eyes see the words, your brain begins to process them, but because you’ve not taken sufficient time, they somehow get jumbled up; a letter switches around, and before you know where you are you’ve turned up at a toga party dressed as a goat. When I think about the two books I have written, there was one thing I made sure I had planned differently second time around. I made sure I had sufficient time to read what I had drafted. And then time to read it again. And once more for luck. I think that authors, especially when a spark has taken hold, tend to focus on getting the words out and down on paper. And while that is important, don’t forget to make time so that you can read what you have just written. I’ve found that I can get quite excited and a tad carried away with what I am writing, only to find out that when I’ve sat down to look at it in the fresh light of day, I have written what can only be described, and this is a technical term, as a right load of old tosh. The lesson I learned from my first book - Addicted to
Death: A food related crime investigation - oh come on I wasn’t going to miss a chance to plug it - was that I wrote a whole chunk of the book before going back and reading it again. There were sections I didn’t like, sections which didn’t flow, and parts which I really enjoyed but which I felt were in the wrong place. And this stemmed from the fact that I hadn’t set aside time to read what I had written. So, when I started to write my second book - Who Killed the Mince Spy? - oh, give me a break, of course I am going to plug the latest book as well - I made sure that I had time set aside for reading, and then re-writing as I went along. And this change was the best thing that I introduced. It made the whole writing process that much easier and also, that much more enjoyable. Yes the characters from the first book were continuing into my second, but when I had finished writing a chapter or two, the process of stopping, reading and reflecting, meant that I was able to tweak the journey of the story so much more easily than had I written the whole thing and then started to unpack it. That’s not to say that I am going getting it right first time. Of course not. It is human nature to make mistakes and that is okay. We have to learn from them and to try to make sure they don’t happen again. And so yes, I have made some reading
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mistakes of late. And with that in mind, I have decided to share something with you which happened recently to make my point. I had an email from Josh Hamel asking me to put together an article for New Edition, which I was delighted to accept. Only, I did not read his email correctly. And this why I write crime stories about food sapiens - you know; those food creatures that form part of our community. You might not have noticed them, but trust me, you probably work alongside a walking, talking food item. If you have ever thought a colleague was a bit of a fool take another look. You will probably find that they are a fool, a strawberry fool in fact. Now Josh emailed me, suggested an idea, and I immediately set to and started making a note as each day slipped past. I did think the request was a bit odd given I am lactose intolerant, but if that’s what Josh thought the readers of New Edition wanted, who was I to ask questions? ***** Sunday 22 October: Sunday lunch, all the trimmings. Absolutely delicious. Wasn’t sure I could really stomach a pudding but this was day 1 of the request and so forced myself to eat a piece of apple crumble covered with custard (lactose free range of course). Can’t really comment on what the afternoon was like as I sat down on the sofa and closed my eyes for just a few moments. Well, okay hours, but who is counting? ***** Monday, 23rd October: Oh for goodness sake where did the weekend go? So it’s the beginning of the working week and it was an effort to get up and out of bed today. Still, it’s Day 2 of Josh’s challenge and I am going to start the morning with some fruit and a pot of yoghurt. For the record I am not a yoghurt fan but down the hatch and off we go. ***** Tuesday, 24th October: Not feeling too good today. Started yesterday afternoon when I had a bit of a headache and I also felt a bit bloated. I’m not blaming the glass of wine I had at lunchtime. Well, not the first glass of wine at least. Day 3 - Can’t face a pot of yoghurt so had a bit of toast instead. I have decided to have a sandwich at lunchtime that is filled with lactose free cheese. And I am going to spice it up by slicing a Spanish onion and slipping that inside the bread. ***** Wednesday, 25th October: Turns out colleagues in the office were not happy with the smell from my Spanish onion. They moaned at me all afternoon. Bad luck everyone, there is more onion on the way as the week progresses! Day 4 - Feeling better today so have opened the fridge door to face my morning nemesis. The
raspberry yoghurt pot. Shoulders back, deep breath, come on Matthew be a man - and swallow it down. ***** Thursday, 26th October: I know I should be writing up a note in readiness for Day 5 of this challenge Josh has set me but the thoughts of tackling another one of those dreadful pots of goo which are hiding in fridge, fills me with dread. I really can’t understand why I agreed to this now to be honest. I am going to send him an email to see if I can write about something else. ***** And that’s when I found out that I had completely misread Josh’s email. It’s all a bit embarrassing really. Only you see, Josh had asked me to keep a diary record of my writing, and not to write a record about the dairy that I had been eating. Who is the strawberry fool now…? Who Killed the Mince Spy by Matthew Redford (Clink Street Publishing, 6th December 2016, RRP £5.99 paperback, £1.99 ebook) is available to order online and from all good bookstores.
NEW EDITION, DECEMBER 2016
Fact, fiction and hoax “A book is simply the container of an idea —
like a bottle; what is inside the book is what matters.” - Angela Carter.
hen J T LeRoy was unmasked by New York Magazine a decade ago, it brought to a crashing end one of the most audacious literary ‘hoaxes’ of modern times. For those of you unfamiliar with the background story — and what a story it is — J T LeRoy was an acclaimed writer who burst on to the literary scene in the late 1990s, leaving a trail of awestruck celebrities, publishers, agents and other writers in his keenly orchestrated wake, the depth of his personal story adding considerable authenticity and fire to his already white hot novels and short stories. J T LeRoy was barely out of his teens when his first novel, Sarah, was published by Bloomsbury in 2000. Jeremiah Terminator, to give him his full title, was a homeless southern sex worker and drug addict suffering from HIV who had been so brutally abused by his prostitute mother and a roster of her clients and his own, that he had become a sort of fragile intersex; a creature not quite of either gender but born male. He was encouraged to write by his therapist and soon had a litany of literary agents, publishers and other writers enthralled by his work, which he would fax over to them from a bathroom in his shared accommodation, having turned tricks to buy the fax machine in the first place. A book deal swiftly followed. The industry celebrated this devastating and original voice, speaking for the first time for a damaged section of American society that the literary glitterati didn’t even know existed. The curtain J T LeRoy pulled back for his high-minded audience revealed a world that was at once monstrous and poetic; grimly captivating, like watching a fatal accident in slow motion. As publishers and reviewers eagerly shared their love for this unnerving new talent — in the days before any kind of social media would have accelerated their actions — J T quickly found that the great and the good of the creative industries were clamouring to sing his praises. The directors Gus Van Sant and Asia Argento, musicians Billy Corgan, Debbie Harry, Courtney Love, Tom Waits and Shirley Manson, and the
Authors have written under pen names for centuries, but how much fact should back up a work of fiction? Hayley Radford asks if the age of the literary avatar is upon us, in the wake of J. T. LeRoy, celebrity endorsements and our edited online identities.
actors Matthew Modine, Michael Pitt and Wynona Ryder were falling over each other to proclaim their devotion to this newest literary star, an iconoclast by virtue of his shyness, secrecy and the crazy clothes he would wear out in public; typically a blonde wig, hat and sunglasses, which caused some to describe his look as that of a white Michael Jackson impersonator. He was young, enigmatic, self-effacing and brilliant and the privileged few were only too pleased to welcome him into their inner circle. Association with LeRoy could provide them vicariously with an extra layer of cool and compassion. J T even found himself ushered backstage at a U2 concert so that Bono could give him career advise, first-hand, one on one. J T LeRoy was an artist, a victim and a phoenix, rising from the flames of his abhorrent childhood to share his voice with the world; his sensitive words resonated and rang true to all who read his work. But J T LeRoy was none of these things. He was in fact, a 40-year-old mother from Brooklyn called Laura Albert who’d made the whole thing up. All of it. Laura Albert had invented J T to say and write the things she felt too boring and inadequate to say herself. Rather than create a pen name having first written a novel, Albert created a persona — exquisitely detailed, psychologically and emotionally rich, weird, challenging — and through that persona she wrote as another person altogether. She wrote as J T mentally, literally and in a literary sense, living completely as an extension of this alternate creation; she had given birth to an author identity, not just a novel of fiction, and the two were inextricably intertwined. Laura Albert’s creative approach to writing was all-consuming. But the degree to which any of the elaborate J T story was cleverly made up or a genuine extension of an already troubled mind will remain something of a mystery. Greatness, madness, an accident or somewhere in the grey zone? A strategy to get published, or the unintentional pulling of a thread that unravelled in the extreme? The interest Albert had received from publishers and readers alike required her to live the role of JT in person. Having spent a couple of years keeping
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the world at arms length, she realised that emails and faxes were no longer cutting the mustard. She needed to greet her waiting public, but of course, she couldn’t. Rather than admit to her identity fraud and hope for a gentle reception, she brought it further to life, roping in her impish sister-in-law to play the physical role of J T at events, readings and premiers. Complete with disguise. And no one batted an eyelid, readers, reviewers and rich fans continued to invest in the enigma in the flesh. Nor did they question who was the tall, striking, bad cockney-accented woman who accompanied JT wherever he went. ‘Speedie’ as she was introduced, was J T’s friend and manager. Speedie was, in fact, Laura Albert, hiding in plain sight, enjoying the action she’d written and staged play out before her disbelieving eyes. This charade continued till the end of 2005 when New York Magazine made the connection between Speedie and Laura Albert, and the New York Times placed the cherry on top of the big reveal cake by finding out the true identify of Savannah Knoop, the woman pretending to be JT LeRoy, the sister of Albert’s long-term partner, Geoff. The rug was pulled out from underneath the feet of Laura Albert and her cast of avatars in spectacular style. Celebrity fans were torn between abject horror at how they had been played and feeling amused to have taken part in such an elaborate parlour trick, a decade long piece of performance art. J T LeRoy’s success in convincing the public — and in particular, the artistic industries — that ‘he’ was real, was almost unprecedented. But regardless of the showmanship, the lies — white or malicious, depending upon which side of the fence you’re on — the role play and the deception, the literary works do stand up on their own merit. They remain incredible stories, written with a mystery and a malevolence which is uniquely theirs. The writing abilities of Laura Albert are not
in question. She can write. However, had she been honest about herself and her own life, whether she would have been so lauded by publishers and agents is questionable. There’s no doubt in my mind that the back story to J T, one blistered with pain, misery and suffering, gave the first novel at least an additional gravitas and a rare authenticity which secured its appeal to industry insiders and subsequently aided in the book’s marketing and word of mouth promotion. Laura Albert, knowingly or otherwise, sensed that using the perfect avatar for her writing, would give her a kudos that her own backstory would not. As much as publishers and journalists may protest that the story — and how much they love it — is all that matters when it comes to choosing which writers to represent or feature, we all know that having an author who’s the full package makes life and literature so much easier to work with. Laura Albert is not the first and certainly won’t be the last writer to hide her true identity from readers in order to advance her career. For women in particular, a nom de plume has afforded them with a genderneutralising cloak; dress in it and they can write and work free from the shackles of misogyny or social prejudice. Mary Ann Evans remains arguably the most famous novelist to switch genders in order to be taken more seriously when she first published as George Elliot in the mid-nineteenth century. She also wanted a clean departure from her work as an editor, for which she was known by her given name. Whilst P. D. James never denied being female, she used her initials only for her pen name because she intended to write in gruesome detail about violent crimes which some may have either considered unnatural for a woman, or dismissed her contribution to the then male-dominated crime thriller genre.
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Often it’s not just about the author as construct that matters, it’s simply how compelling their personal lives are to us, in how they render the writer more human, more insightful and more intimately accessible to us as the reader. We can as readers base our assessments entirely too much on what we know about the writer, and yet this is a tricky pitfall to avoid. Would To Kill A Mockingbird have sustained such remarkable sales throughout Harper Lee’s lifetime had she not been a recluse and it, until her final years at least, been notoriously her only novel? Would I have been so desperate to read the poems of Ezra Pound if I hadn’t learned of his confinement to a small cage by the US Army in Pisa, Italy, in 1945? Would Sylvia Plath’s work be as cherished today were it not for the intimate legacy she left us; a grim awareness of her difficult personal life and her untimely, desperate death, which encourages us as readers to invest more in her work than that of other, less troubled authors? So what is most important: the writing, or the personality cult of the author? In recent years, the publishing industry would certainly seem guilty of suggesting that the latter counts above all else; how else can we account for Frank Lampard and Bruce Springsteen now being branded as children’s authors? There are swathes of sloppy celebrity-approved titles in which models like Katie Price or reality TV stars like the Kardashian clan put their names to endless novels which have, quite blatantly in many cases, been ghost-written by an unknown writer for hire? When Random House secured book right to YouTube sensation Zoella, a young woman allegedly able to tap in to the zeitgeist of her own millennial generation with great aplomb, it didn’t even occur to them as publisher to let her write a book in her own words, on her own terms. They drafted in the gifted and experienced Siobhan Curran to ‘create’ the right kind of book for Zoella and Zoella’s market. Isn’t that even more cynical and contrived than Laura Albert’s efforts to match her brilliant prose with an equally exceptional author front? Yes it is, and Random’s swift about-turn following the bad press they received following the Zoella ghost book debacle, which saw them release a statement to say that Zoella absolutely would be writing book two on her own, confirms it. Or is it that we simply can’t stand being lied to? If all writers were bold as brass like billionaire fiction-factory owner James Patterson - who publicly declares that it’s his brand and the integrity of that brand that matters to him and his readers - would we still feel cheated? To Patterson, the need for new books overtakes the need for him to have written them himself. It feels legitimate enough for the committee he’s commissioned and trained to write as him, to do the leg work, leaving him free to promote and sell instead. Like Wedgewood. Or Jeff Koons. And there’s a growing sense that we as readers and
consumers are complicit in this literary fraud of sorts. With our Facebook profiles ‘liking’ only the prime aspects of our own lives, and our burgeoning Instagram pages in which we offer up only the choicest selection of our best selfies and sun-soaked lifestyle highlights, we are all in danger of editing our true selves to suit the me-brand we wish to promote to others, whatever our reasons are for doing so. Can we no longer be trusted to value one another, warts and all? Have we become so obsessed with the surface of things that the heart and the bones of us no longer matter? Everyone with a social media account runs the risk of curating, even just a little bit, to make their online story appeal more broadly than it might naturally do. We all want to be liked. There was no falsehood in the writing of Laura Albert, just a flagrant construct she built around the role she was too uncomfortable in her own skin to play; that of the author. But an author she was, and still is. Developing good writing can, to some extent, require an out of body experience, where the writer is able to tap into something inspired, something that’s not quite about them or from them. As Allen Ginsberg, a writer who once claimed that all of his works were an extended, embellished biography, put it, “To gain your own voice, you have to forget about having it heard.” So where does that voice come from? In our melting pot of rampant consumerism, social media confessionals, marketing overload and content saturation, it’s hard to recognise a real voice from a manufactured one. Everyone is hiding something, or sharing something specifically, for a reason. If Laura Albert is guilty of anything, it’s for reverse engineering the writing process; she came up with a novel and then needed to find the person behind the voice, to own it for her and to tell it to the world. Not quite knowing where the tale or the lie begins and ends is the mark of a great storyteller. Author: The J T Leroy Story, a documentary by Jeff Feuerzeig, is still in selected cinemas and available to buy online www.jtleroystory.com
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A New You
With another year almost gone, it’s time to start looking forward. And whether your goal for 2017 is mental or physical, Clink Street’s self-help gurus are here to help you succeed in your fresh start.
NEW EDITION, DECEMBER 2016
Marissa Pendleburry, author of Nourishing Routes From the moment we arrive on the planet, most of us enter into an unbreakable relationship with food and nourishment. After the exact moment of receiving nutrients from your mothers placenta, to then finding comfort from being breast or bottle fed as a newborn, we immediately learn that consuming nutrients - in whatever form that may be - is essential for our growth and survival - even if this at first only happens at a subconscious level. Even at this subconscious level, we have entered into a life long relationship with food. However, food not only serves to nourish us, but also to create bonds with who we eat with, significant memories, and the cultural rituals we use to create our sense of identity. Whether that be eating a spaghetti bolognese every Friday night with your family, ice cream along the beach, or popcorn with your friends when watching a film - food is associated with people, times and places. As we go throughout life, food can also take on other multiple meanings, such as how ‘good’, wealthy, selfcontrolled or ‘on track’ they are with society’s expectations. Unfortunately, this association between food and self is not always a positive one. For example, instead on being linked with positive memories or becoming part of our cultural sense of belonging, food can become a way of negatively self-judging and comparing ourselves with others. Since much of western society views food as a gauge of how self-controlled a person is, e.g. how ‘healthy’ or unhealthy they eat and even how much they weigh, what we eat can be symbolic of trying to obtain (unrealistic) standards. Take for example the act of eating a cake or biscuit. For one individual this might mean relating to that food as symbolic of sharing time with family and friends. Alternatively, for another person, it might symbolise deviating from a particular way of eating, such as a weight loss diet or a plan where all processed foods are to be strictly avoided. As you can probably grasp, in this context, quite quickly eating a certain type of food in a particular quantity can become a source of pleasure as well as self-hate and shame. Simultaneously a person might sense the pleasant taste of sugar and fat, while also feeling a pang of guilt as the act of eating that cake conflicts with another goal - e.g. losing weight or eating ‘clean’, whether the person physically needs to or not. Similarly, eating foods that are not typically classified
as ‘healthy’, may conflict with the expectation of avoiding foods that are viewed as nutrient deficient, toxic and indulgent. These negative connotations we associate with food not only apply to that moment, but also the lasting feeling we have towards ourselves after eating it. Instead of experiencing food as part of a balanced diet that allows us to connect to other people and create memories, what we eat becomes a symbol of what we haven’t got - i.e. the best diet, capacity for self-regulation, or reaching a ‘perfect’ weight and physical appearance. In other words, eating food may become associated with negative thoughts and feelings about how we just aren’t good enough as we are. Although we might believe that this negative self-talk will lead to increased motivation to eat ‘better’, such as telling ourselves off when eating a food we have previously restricted, it can lead to the very opposite by making us feel incapable of controlling what we eat. Consequently, feeling incompetent around food can lead us to feel as though losing control is inevitable, to the point where overeating becomes inevitable. At the other end of the spectrum, negative selftalk around food can lead individuals to engage in disordered behaviour that involves further restricting or completely eliminating certain foods, as well as trying to use unhealthy behaviours to try and counteract what has been eaten - e.g. overexercising, skipping meals, or being sick. These may seem like extreme examples, but they are unfortunately quite common in a society where our relationship with food is linked to negative self-comparison and judgement in relation to what we do and do not eat, as well as how much we physically weigh. However, while our tendency to apply certain meanings to food can manifest in a negative way, we can learn to apply more positive and selfcompassionate meanings to food. When eating becomes a source of showing kindness to yourself, and as a way of acting in line with your values, this can bring a positive sense of wellbeing, which is a concept I refer to as Compassion Eating. Compassion Eating simply involves viewing food as having a greater meaning that its nutrients or value (e.g. Calories and impacts on weight), while accepting that we can not completely control what we eat. It additionally involves accpeting
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that we do not have to eat with feelings of guilt and shame, while eating in a way that appreciates that we are complex beings who naturally eat to meet our social and psychological needs - not just our physical ones As one example, even if a food/meal you eat is not specifically ‘healthy’ or ‘low’ in calories, seeing the food as an opportunity to create a new memory, break away from rigid rules, or appreciate someone’s time and effort to prepare that food can feel liberating and enjoyable. But how can we develop a way of thinking where food becomes an empowering tool to reconnect with ourselves, others and the world around us? Well firstly, this could involve becoming more critical of the standards set by other people and society around food. For example, questioning the idea that someone is a ‘bad’ gluttonous person if i eat a type or amount of food that is deemed to be unhealthy, unclean or too high in Calories. Similarly, we can begin questioning how eating a certain food means we are or not a worthy person who needs to be punished or driven to get rid of the effects of that food. If we can realise that, as human beings, we have more to base our self-worth on than what we eat, then we can begin to develop a healthier and more trusting relationship with food. But what this type of relationship with food look like in a society that seems to promote the exact opposite?
Over many years of overcoming my own disordered relationship with food and learning to become more self-compassionate with what I eat, I feel that the following components are crucial in order to develop a healthy relationship with food: - Not viewing food solely as a mixture of nutrients (e.g. fats, carbohydrates and protein) or calories - Not relating to food in a way that symbolises your weight or self-worth - Eating when and how much you like, while not feeling like you have to abide by certain rules or rituals - Saying yes to opportunities to try different foods, and not fearing how you might feel about yourself after eating them - Seeing food as part of your most important memories and relationships with others - Appreciating the smell, sight, taste and touch of foods - being mindful when eating and not rushing to eat due to lack of time or not wanting to face any negative thoughts about yourself while eating. - Engaging in positive talk to others about food i.e. not referring to it as a way of moulding the body These are just some of the fundamental foundations of Compassion Eating, and by placing more emphasis on these values we can come to view food as something we can enjoy in many forms and contexts without a need for control, self-punishment or negative judgement and self-comparison. If we truly desire the liberating experience of developing a life long positive relationship with food, then we can learn to feel free with how and what we eat, so that we can spend more of our precious time focussing on other areas of our wellbeing that play a fundamental role in allowing us to flourish, thrive and reach our full potential. Nourishing Routes by Marissa Pendleburry (Published by Clink Street RRP £12.99 paperback, £5.99 ebook) will be available 17th January 2017.
JD Rhodes, author of I Wonder...The Science of Imagination How on earth do you write an article for authors about creativity? Surely they are experts already? The brief from the Editor to me was: ‘tips for a new you for 2017 on creativity’. I frowned. Having just written a book on imagination, was there something I could rifle from it that might hit the spot? Authors reading this will come from different genres. I write non-fiction, probably not seen as an arena of creativity because it requires deep-mined research. Yet any non-fiction writer will tell you that imagination plays a huge part. Fiction writers use it differently and
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they may also get stuck into nitty-gritty research before they let their minds fly free. People suppose that imagination equals creativity. No! My understanding of creativity encompasses all the many aspects of it, not only imagination. I despair every time I hear a reference to the ‘creative industries’ because it is used to mean literature, music, fine art and drama as expressed in film, video, books, galleries, museums and live performance. So creativity is being linked only to the ‘arts.’ But what of the sciences: physics, chemistry, medicine, botany, biology? Above all, mathematics! And then technology: cars, bicycles, robots, building materials, water systems, fertilisers? Regardless of whether you approve of all the new things brought into our lives over the past few hundred years, you can only acknowledge that there must have been a lot of creativity about. Over my life as a business consultant, I have worked world-wide with many companies, large and small, and seen that there is creativity a-plenty running through them, bursting out in all the remarkable inventions and innovations they bring to us. How do I know this? My speciality was - yes, you’ve guessed it - creativity. Here’s a simple, bird’s eye view of the creative mind, which applies to ALL people in ALL fields of endeavour, including authors. There are three domains: imagination, critical judgement and emotional commitment. That’s it, and you need all three. I am not including here authors’ technical abilities of writing, drawing, etc: those are the skills of the trade. I am looking from a high point at what needs to go on in your mind if you are to be creative. You need to master these three thinking force-fields, and their interactivity, to be successful. Otherwise you need a colleague or agent to provide what you do not do, or do not want to do. So with this broad understanding that imagination is just a part of what it takes to be truly creative, I would like to offer four selected tips from my research into it. Since this domain of your mind has many rooms it is a rich field. 1. Surprise. Some days you can feel stale and jaded. While a walk and a cup of coffee are good antidotes, so is this little mind-game. Take a main character in your novel and imagine a new one - far removed from anything in your story - and play out a conversation these two could have on first meeting. Even though the new character is irrelevant to your story you could discover surprising insights. 2. Curiosity. This is the driver of the non-fiction writer. It leads you deep into research, pursuing investigation far longer than any normal person would. Allow yourself the occasional pleasure of taking a tangent, a flight of fancy or an anecdote that appears to have no bearing on your topic. Serendipity might just hand you a gem. 3. Upset. Whatever your theme, try turning your
whole approach into an opposite. Say you are writing a romance: how would it play out if it were a thriller? Or your book is on injustice: maybe it could be on happiness? What insight does this bring? 4. Symbolize. You could reach for some impossible connection between, for example, a bank and the moon and come up with the sublime scene that surrounds “How sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank” (Shakespeare: Merchant of Venice) Creativeness is so ephemeral and mysterious, tips like these above make it more explicit and tangible, If any one of these four helps your endeavours I would be delighted to know, and pleased that this little article has been useful. I Wonder...The Science of Imagination by J.D. Rhodes (Published by Clink Street, RRP TBD) will be available 7th February, 2017).
Rick Hay, author of The Anti Ageing Food & Fitness Plan When we talk about how to either lose weight, make your workouts more effective or how to Burn Fat Faster and longer, we really should look at three things that can affect this process:
Exercise – when, what, how Nutrition – you are what you eat… or will become
Detox – your body needs to be clean inside to function properly. The foundation for how well your body works of course is determined by how efficiently it’s working on the inside, this may be partly influenced by genetics, but most of it will be from how you have treated your body over the years, how much alcohol you’ve had, how many cigarettes you smoked, and of course the type of food you consume. So what effects how efficiently we burn fat? – and can we do it faster & for longer? Focusing on EXERCISE, the new way to reach your goals faster & with better results is with HIIT - This stands for ‘High Intensity Interval Training’. Basically it’s the principle of performing exercises at a higher intensity, basically going all out for a period of say 20- 40 seconds, followed by a similar period of either lower intensity or rest. in-between, which results in burning more calories in a shorter time than traditional continuous training. The benefits here are that because you can do this with cardio exercise and using body weight as resistance it can be done anytime, anywhere, there’s no need to be in a gym! Traditional cardio exercise has been doing long continuous movement, on say a treadmill for half an hour or longer, however recent research shows that your body will actually burn more calories, even after you finish… for up to 2 hours! This is known as the EPOC principle (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption). We also know that the body responds better to mixing up your exercise regime, HIIT creates ’muscle confusion’ i.e. not giving your body the chance to get used to a
particular exercise and so lowering the effectiveness and results. Other benefits are that you are less likely to get bored with this form of keeping fit and with most of us being time poor these days we can see better results, dramatically cutting down on your workout time, this means you are more likely to keep to your routine and reach your goals. In addition, you may see improvements in blood pressure and general endurance and fitness levels. Energy will increase due to a higher count of mitochondria - the process which fuels both your body and your brain! Plus your heart (and your arteries and veins) get a better workout leading to increased general fitness. Also worth mentioning in our ability to burn fat faster is that muscle burns fat more efficiently, so, if you want to burn fat faster and increase your metabolism, you should work on increasing your muscle tone / mass, especially as this will decrease naturally as we age. This involves doing resistance exercises, using both body weight and free weights/machines. In terms of Anti-Ageing, by boosting your natural muscle mass, you will not only improve your general fitness levels & reduce body fat percentage, but you can strengthen, tone and shape your muscles resulting in a younger looking appearance, plus weight training has also been shown to reduce or even reverse the effects of osteoporosis, a weakening of bones that occurs as we age! Adding in a well balanced diet, including a detox to improve and cleanse your body, you will have all the elements burn fat faster. So – on your marks, get set, go burn that fat! Look for a new edition of The Anti Ageing Food and Fitness Plan by Rick Hay coming in 2017.
NEW EDITION, DECEMBER 2016
New books from
Clink Street this winter Who Killed the Mince Spy?
By Matthew Redford Tenacious carrot, detective inspector Willie Wortel is back to uncover the deviously delicious mind behind the crime of the festive season in this hugely entertaining, and utterly unconventional, short story. 6th December, 2016 RRP £5.99 paperback, £1.99 ebook
By Marissa Pendlebury No diets, detox plans or calorie counting instead be inspired to reconnect with what makes you feel happy, healthy and free, thanks to this lifeaffirming guide from someone whose battled her own food demons for too long 17th January, 2017 RRP £12.99 paperback, £5.99 ebook
How to Profit From Your Divorce
By P.A. Ross
Combining his own experience with extensive research, P.A Ross provides a deeply personal, honest and passionate story to help the 20 million people affected by divorce in the UK. 10th January, 2017 RRP £14.99 paperback, £8.99 ebook
Taste of the French Caribbean
By Denis Rosembert
Stir up an authentic taste of the Caribbean at home with chef Denis Rosembert’s first ever cookbook. The St. Lucia born restauranteur lovingly curates his favourite dishes from delicious jerk chicken to sweet golden apple cake — for you to recreate. 31st January, 2017 RRP £24.99 hardback, £5.99 ebook
Heaven Vs Reincarnation
By Jerry Rhodes
By Dharma Insightful and challening look at the failings of modern relgions and a call for the return of ethics and morals based on teachings found in the Vedas.
Harness the power of imagination and open yourself to fresh perspectives in this guide to enhancing your creativity 7th February, 2017 RRP TBC
31st January, 2017 RRP £8.99 paperback, £3.99 ebook
Sphere’s Divide: Tragedies of Emotion
By Sam Taylor Pye
By JC Norman
In 1860s San Francisco, Osmosis Jones finds himself choosing between a gang of street friends and saving his lover’s life.
Val and Arcalie’s love and loyalty is stretched to the limit as external forces pull them towards different destinies in this epic fantasy series.
9th February, 2017 RRP £9.99 paperback, £3.99 ebook
7th February, 2017 RRP TBC
The Frog Theory
By Fiona Mordaunt Kim Carter finds himself falling in love with Clea, a girl from a smarter part of town. Using the frog theory, he wakes her up to the dangerous situation she is in at home. But where do you find inspiration when parents have failed you? 14th February, 2017 RRP TBC
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