On Monday 6th September, award winning local author Amy Lord attended the Books and Bakes Book Club at The Institute, Grays Road, Grangefield to talk to the group about her book, her writing, her awards and all things book-publishing related.

The author of ‘The Disappeared’, published by crowdfunding publisher Unbound, did a short reading from the beginning of the book leaving the group with the age old question – what happens next? The Disappeared is dystopian fiction, think George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty Four, based in a UK where certain books are banned, democracy no longer exists so the country is run by a brutal regime and people who break their rules disappear.

After the reading, Amy spoke at great length about the book, the plot, the inspiration, her writing process, the publishing process, how authors make money and her overall experience of book writing and publication from her perspective. It was really interesting to learn more about the processes involved and how much work, often over many years, goes into each publication.

Author, Amy Lord, signing copies of ‘The Disappeared’ for Books & Bakes Book Club

One group member, Karen Shields, added that she loved listening to Amy read from her book but wished she could have read on to the end even though she had already read the book in preparation for the session today. Karen was also surprised to learn about the struggle that new authors have to get published and the little they receive in royalties. She added, “It makes you realise that they fight to get published just for the love of the written word and, depending on the genre of the book, do it to get our minds as readers working, thinking and, in the case of ‘The Disappeared’ this could happen. What would my reactions be if I was in such a dystopian society? You could see how passionate Amy is in her craft in how fully and honestly she answered all of the questions.”

As a gift for those who attended the group today, Hand In Hand Activities CIC purchased signed copies of Amy’s book for participants and the group have decided that The Disappeared will be the January Book Club book to read for discussion.

Books & Bakes Book Club members pose with their signed copies of The Disappeared and author Amy Lord at the end of the talk.
Books & Bakes Book Club members pose with their signed copies of The Disappeared and author Amy Lord at the end of the talk.

Our next Books and Bakes Book Club is on Monday 20th September and we will be discussing The Memory Keepers Daughter by Kim Edwards.

This session was made possible thanks to the National Lottery Local Connections Fund.

Before today's presentation of Amy's book I had no idea how long it took to produce a book. A very informative session I am looking forward to reading the signed copy. Many thanks

Margaret Agar

HIHA CIC
2021-09-06T20:48:06+00:00

Margaret Agar

I had no idea how long it took to produce a book
I loved the reading and wished she could have gone on to the end even though I have read the book.

Karen Shields

HIHA CIC
2021-09-06T20:48:54+00:00

Karen Shields

I loved the reading
It was great to meet author Amy Lord today and hear about the rather lengthy process of writing a novel. It was also very interesting to learn how difficult it is to get a book published.
I’m halfway through her book ‘The Disappeared’ and will continue reading it with a newfound respect for all writers.

Lynne Amos

HIHA CIC
2021-09-06T22:00:48+00:00

Lynne Amos

I’m halfway through her book ‘The Disappeared’
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HIHA CIC

1 Comment

Kathryn Hoey · September 8, 2021 at 2:05 pm

Amy Lord, who won a Northern Writers Award in 2015, for her first book “The Disappeared”, told us about her experiences, when writing that first book.

Amy had to make sure the subject matter was of interest to the general public so she invited people who had useful insight to give her feedback. She had do to lots of research to make sure her story line and characters were feasible. She had to plan each part of the story and used a spreadsheet to help organise her thoughts, plots, characters etc.

Amy found she did multiple drafts of her work, editing and proof reading it to make sure her copy was perfect before sending it to her publisher.

Once her publisher had approve her work many people became involved before she actually held her book in her hands – editor, illustrator to design the book cover, printer, marketing to promote the book by arranging such things as book signings, and advertising. Amy had to rewrite parts of her story again after being advised parts of it needed improving. She also decided to change part of the storyline herself and also to expand one of the characters.

Amy answered our questions and also read an excerpt from her book. So it was a very interesting afternoon spent learning about the many processes an author has to go through before having a book published.

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