It was four years ago this month I held the launch of my first book ROGER THE ROOSTER OF AMBURY PARK FARM. It was held at Ambury Regional Park Farm in Mangere Bridge, a wonderful venue in the barn with goats, lambs wandering through the crowds of people. The real Roger hero of the story was outside in his lovely house, crowing at all the right places.
Since then I have gone on to self-publish 10 books mostly children’s beautifully illustrated books and some anthologies of short stories, as well as contributing to several others.
This week ROMAN RABBIT COMES TO VISIT and OLD AND NEW TALES TO READ IN A HAMMOCK arrive from the printers.
Roman Rabbit came about when I was visiting Leicester in UK where my nephew his wife and two small children lived. During my time with them we went for a trip to a local Roman Fort and while we were having a picnic a rabbit hopped by. ‘Oh look I said to my small great nephew, there’s Roman Rabbit.’
A year or so later I wrote a little story about Roman Rabbit who followed the stars and came to visit and the fun he had with the children. The illustrations are full of beautiful colour, and detail, with the cover showing Roman Rabbit complete in Roman armour patrolling the fort. My great nephew is now 19 and interestingly enough some of my other children’s stories were written many years ago for other children. I remembered how they were enjoyed, edited them and everything I’ve learned in the past four years about self-publishing has made the job easier with each book.
OLD AND NEW TALES TO READ IN A HAMMOCK is a compilation of my first two small volumes of Tales and More Tales to read in a Hammock. Instead of reprinting them again I edited them, added some more stories and the new volume will be ready for sale next week along with ROMAN RABBIT COMES TO VISIT.
I am happy that my two latest books will be well received by my readers who constantly ask me ‘when are the next books are coming out.’ I also realised that my first children’s stories did feature boys more than girls so along with ROMAN RABBIT, the next four stories – hopefully available in the next few months – there is a better balance with gender equality! My short story collection is for general reading, nothing gratuitous, although there are a couple of murders, but reviews have told me they are great stories, some short, some longer. Great to read on a commute to work, by a log fire or in summer relaxing in a hammock. A light hearted collection recounting challenges of family relationships, humour, murder, romance of simply thought provoking.
I admit I do love marketing and selling my books and am delighted at the lovely feedback I hear from both adults and children. Complementing the advent of amazing technology where eBooks can be down loaded, I’m happy to report in my experience children still love to have stories read to them and for print books to be enjoyed.
Robyn P Murray
Author & Publisher of Children’s Illustrated Books and Short Stories