The day has arrived: my book is published. It’s not a thousand pages long and it’s not based on a novel by a man called Lear, but I am a paperback writer. At last. I have wanted to be a writer as long as I can remember, so I have achieved not just a personal goal but a lifetime’s ambition.
Why is there no hardback? Did I not want to be hardback writer, too? A good question. My genre is true crime and, to be blunt, true crime titles do not sell that well in a firmer cover: this is a commercial fact. Why, I’m not so sure. There may be reasons that some market researcher could elucidate but this would only explain the fact, it would not change it. Many true crime books are published exclusively as a paperback, perhaps only the most established authors in the genre first come to market with a dust jacket. There is one advantage with the jackletless approach, however. I’ve lost count how many times a friend has said, “I’ll wait for the paperback”. So there is less likely to be deferred – and possibly lost – readers. And for first-time writers like me, every reader is so precious and important; they need to be embraced, hugged.
If the paperback does well enough, perhaps there could be a special or limited edition hardback. It’s an aspiration, a personal goal.
But, as I have found out today, it doesn’t hurt to have them.