What prompted you to write your book in the first place?
I started a website called ‘Away End’ a few years ago where football fan’s could share their stories from watching football. I always had it in the back of my mind that a collection of football fan stories would make a great book for like minded football fans. Earlier in the year I hit a milestone of 50 good stories on the website and thought now was the time to think about the book.
Give us a brief synopsis of your book?
As mentioned above, the book is a collection of humorous football fan stories told by the fan’s themselves. The stories are from fan’s of clubs all over the country and the majority of the tales told are of away day trips to watch their team. All football fans have a favourite memory from a particular game they attended. The memories of the day are very rarely a great goal or incredible game they witnessed, more of the events surrounding the actual game itself like the disastrous journey to the ground or the one tipple too many before the game in the local watering hole. Football is a game you share with friends, either watching or playing. This book gives you an insight into the life of hardened football fan and the camaraderie that exists between them.
Why did you decide to go down the self publishing route?
I found out a friend of mine and fellow Spireite (Chesterfield fan) Gary Gorman had recently published his own book so took the opportunity to speak to him about the experience. Gary was great in offering me his advice and pointed me in the direction of Helen at HLS Publishing. The process seemed fairly straight forward and after a few e-mails with Helen, I decided to give it a go.
What has been the best part of your publishing journey?
Getting the book published has been an incredible journey with some very memorable moments along the way. The best part has to be the morning I opened the package from Amazon to see and hold my own book for the very first time, what a buzz.
What has been the worst part of your publishing journey?
Being a very keen and impatient kind of a guy, waiting for the approval email from KDP once the book had been submitted for review was the worst part. KDP have their own process for reviewing and approving books that involves checking copyright. This check delayed the approval of the book by a couple of days which seemed to go on for an eternity. In the grand scheme of things, this book had been a couple of years in the making so what was a couple of days going to hurt? Helen’s F5 key (refresh) that’s what!
Would you consider writing another book?
Yes and I have already started. Now I have been through the process of getting a book published, I am already looking forward to opening the next Amazon package to see book number two and getting that buzz again.
What would you have done differently in hindsight?
In general I wouldn’t change anything about how the book has been put together and published. From a personal point of view with my book, the stories I used had all been submitted to my website over a couple of years. The task of putting them all together to produce the manuscript could have been made a lot easier by starting from day one. Book number two in the series will be a lot easier as I’m collating and putting the manuscript together as I go.
What advice would you give a budding author?
Believe in yourself and your book. If you don’t think it will be any good, how will you convince other people it will be? Go with your gut instincts but do take advice from trusted friends on your ideas.
Do you feel different in any way now you are an author?
It’s a great feeling to know I have my very own book published and I am very proud to have done it. I’m probably still in the honeymoon period as they say in football of just having the book released, but yes I do feel different and in a very good way. It definitely provides a talking point with people and the small amount of media interest has been a great experience.