Here you go.  This is a post from one of my very best friends who happens to be a writer.  Let’s all hope the we have book launch gremlins too. 🙂

As any writer knows, there are little creatures known as Launch Gremlins. Whenever a writer has an imminent book launch, these gremlins emerge from wherever they have been hiding and create a hundred different times of havoc. This is not just a Rule: it is the Law; it is unchanging; it happens to every writer at every launch. It cannot be altered.  Now, I have a book launch for A Sink of Atrocity coming up. I tried to keep it quiet, but my publishers, bless their innocent little hearts, whispered it to the world, the gremlins heard the news and pricked up their sharp little ears

They swarmed over in their chattering millions, crawled under the door, slithered down the chimney, swam through the pipes and came through the taps, hitch hiked on the cat’s tail or hid inside the shopping. One way or a hundred ways they infested our house and began to cause chaos. They froze the computer; they put snow drifts across our driveway the very morning I was due to drive the near two hundred miles to see the publisher; they hid my reference books and ensured my illustrations were unsuitable.

Now that last was a really mean trick. I had thought my illustrations were perfect; I had hunted them out specifically for the book and matched them page by page. They were black and white original illustrations contemporary with the period and I was very proud of them. Unfortunately the picture gremlins got there first. They got there before me in fact, for the photographs were low resolution and the book required high resolution.

But for every evil gremlin there is a guardian angel and mine arrived in the shape of the curators at Dundee Museum.  Dundee in Scotland must be one of the friendliest places in the world, and these two ladies, Rhona Rodger and Ruth Neave, worked like Trojans to find suitable illustrations. Thanks to them, the book was completed and the picture gremlins gibbered in frustration at their failure.

But then, as I sighed in relief and hoped to wave an un-fond farewell to the gremlins, they struck again. They struck subtly and with intent. As Churchill thrust at the ‘soft underbelly’ of Europe in 1943 after four years of stubborn war, the gremlins struck at the soft underbelly here. It was not a full frontal attack but a sneaky, clever and ultimately effective strategy.  They called in a host of tiny reinforcements and gave my wife influenza.

Oh the nastiness of it.  It was a clever move by the gremlins, for with the wife being struck, it is inevitable that I will be next. But when and how is the question. Will it hold out until after Thursday when A Sink of Atrocity is launched? Or will it hit me so I lose my voice and have the same shiverings and light headedness that has made my wife suffer so badly these last ten days?

Who will win: the gremlins or the writer?  All will be revealed on Thursday night.

The moral of this blog?  If you are approaching your launch and things appear to be going wrong, then keep the chin up. It is not you going wrong, it is the launch gremlins. Now here is a thought:  gremlins want to destroy what is good, so the more that arrive for your launch, the more important they must think it is.  To follow that train, the more gremlins arrive for your launch or even for your life;  then the more important they must think it is.

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