Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Old Favourites by Kate Walker

When I first started writing romance all that time ago – December 2014 marks 30 years since I was first published – the books were only available in  bookshops – no internet, no Amazon, definitely no  ebook readers.  They were also only available for that one month they were on sale – and no more.   And not even that if, as the very first book I ever wrote was only available in the hardback version that was known as a ‘library edition.’

So that first book,  The Chalk Line, appeared in my hands – arriving in a parcel  just before Christmas – but I couldn’t see it on the bookshop shelves. And as not every book ever went to America either, it didn’t have a paperback edition until some years later.  Seven years later to be precise, when it was decided to publish the paperback edition in 1991!

And of course on those days, once a book was published  and went on sale for a month, then that was it.  There was no way of getting hold of a copy later. And the only reprints were rare -  they were labelled ‘Bestsellers’  and possibly   reprinted a few years later – if the original book sold well enough to merit it. But when you were up against the greats like  Charlotte Lamb, Anne Mather, Penny Jordan,  you often didn’t get a chance at that.

I was thinking about this when  I realise that Harlequin have released a whole bundle of my earlier books in new ebook formats  since the start of this year.  It’s a thrill to see older books -  Wife For A Day (originally published 1998) or The Married Mistress (2003) coming ‘back to life’ so to speak in new Kindle editions so that new readers  - or readers who have been looking for these titles for some time – can now get copies of them at  the click of a mouse.  These books were only
in  Reader Service when they were first released so they were on general distribution for anyone to get hold of them

It’s been a thrill to see these ‘resurrected’ books selling too – I discovered The Married Mistress  in the top 20 bestsellers on Amazon – not bad for a book that is over 10 years old! But perhaps the best thing has been that  the covers are been renewed as well, where they were needed.   I always liked to cover of The Married Mistress  -  but the original artwork for Wife For A Day was -  well,  strange. . . I mean – look at the heroine’s hair. The new edition is much better, much more like the characters I had in mind.

It’s an amazing feeling, after 30 years writing and being published to find that my older  books are now getting this new lease of life – and coming back revitalised and revived.  It’s something I could never have imagined all those years ago when The Chalk Line first came out – just goes to show that nothing stands still – particularly not in publishing.  

What about you: Do you like the way the older books are being re-issued – are you glad to have a chance to grab at books you never read before – or revisit old
favourites? Are there any romances you’re particularly looking forward to seeing – or would like to see republished in this way?

Titles coming up  for me  are  the reprinting of  The Good Greek Wife in a 3 in 1 special collection titles Eligible Greeks: Sizzling Affairs.

My next full length novel will be  A Question of Honour (or Honor!) published in M&B Modern and Harlequin  Presents in  June.  The idea  for that came from my own family history - but I'll tell you more about that   nearer to publication time.

You can find out more about me and my books one my website  or on my blog where all the latest and most up to date news can be found.


Anne said...

Kate as a reader, I love it that so many old books by favorite authors are becoming available again. I used to worry about running out of books to read. Not possible these days.

Kate Walker said...

Hello Anne - as a reader I have to agree with you! The problem now is that there are so many books I want to REread that I just don't have time. But there's the great thing about a kindle - all those books stored in such a small place - and no one can see how extravagant I've been! And then when I'm going somewhere the is a choice of so many to read - but no excess baggage! (I need to put your Winter Bride on there now)