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Hear n See

Well, after 30 odd years trying to encourage anyone from themselves to a massed locked room of 500 to consider reading as a good thing...

I decided to try and do more that could be seen and heard.

I've a load of shows from my radio days, pop to www.mixcloud.com/beyondbooksmedia

I Did 5 years as a panellist for BBC Radio Merseyside with the wonderful Late Night Live and Linda McDermott that is where I got my tonythebook@live.co.uk from as listeners knew me as Tony The Book from doing the on air reviews, we did meet some wonderful guests memorably Howard Blake and Greta Scacci and James Horner amongst them.

Once I suss out this website malarky I'll load a gallery up, for now follow me on twitter @tonydoesbooks

So, I've worked alongside many authors doing schools/libraries and festivals, it struck me that there was something missing from the equation in a way, not me selling more books, as it goes that is less of my main business acumen these days, I love anyone buying a good book and do my best to find them and read them, but without a shop, it's less fun and has less impact for me.

Sally-Anne and I have done loads of events where we tell stories, dress up, have props and music
Just pop to www.purplepenguinpublishing.co.uk and see, we are doing several big Festivals this year, notably 11/12th May in Southport and a summer long series in Warrington and Wigan. follow @purplepengpub for that all...

I still tour with authors and now go further, in fact finding new schools and libraries across the North and down to Nottingham has been a thrill.

The factor I mentioned was cost and indeed time... let's say An Author/Illustrator is coming from South, so, they need a train and a room and audiences, that is easy, but may cost 2 days or even 3 and approx £300-500 and it's not that they aren't worth it, it's more that some can't afford it, so it is infrequent no matter who is involved and the onus is always on certain times...ie WBD and after exams and early in new School year, so what am I and others to do the rest of the time?

I did diversify, I worked for Hermes as a local doorstep courier in Merseyside and also for the online guerrila jungle that is Amazon...
again as a courier,...
I hated both, I did them for 18 months mind and was pretty good at it, but, I hated it. After all, I am a bookseller primarily and had 2 shops have to close which put me on the streets of despair as it was.

I did and can do edits and proof reads and PR etc, but again those who need it can't afford it, I blogged all this recently.

So, here is the thing, I can do Storytelling and Talk about Stories and Inspiration and Plot and Characters and Settings, I've heard hundreds and read thousands. I can do Creative Writing Workshops and really like the ones with teams and lots of time to be creative and expressive and break the walls of convention, allow a few weird words and ideas out, with some censorship if really needed.

I can do a lot, and a lot cheaper than those who have to travel and stay... so it would be nice to get more actual paying work and help others and develop my range and activities, plus I can adapt to any age because it's not about what I've actually published that limits me, it's about finding schools and libraries that want input and can make some time available.

So, I am £250 a full day by my advice from the SfS.org that is £200 plus VAT that would include all travel and suchlike for anywhere within a 2 hour drive of Liverpool, so I have done Sheffield, Nottingham and Leeds and South Lakes. I can also do Northern Ireland too.

However, if it is less than a full day and/or you can't afford the full fee, I can be flexible, but like my other blog post, I do need to express one key fact. It IS my actual livelihood and I am just as good at what I do as pretty much anyone, Neal Shusterman a huge US bestselling author genuinely declared that I was the Best Bookseller he'd met and worked with on his recent UK tour. And I know many others would give me their support and backing if asked.

So, as any ONE event is basically 3 hours, coming-doing-going we need to be fair and honest and also if there is no other work because of that trip that is one reason things can cost what they do.... So in essence it equates to £25 plus VAT a 'session of 3 hours inc 1 hour presenting' So that is £90 all in.
IF you are so local or so poorly funded then for occasional sessions that I either can combine with other work or we get full support for any sales of books as well, I can do a flat £30 for 30 miles from home ie £25 plus VAT.

Bear these little facts in mind, I pay insurance as a business and have £10,0000 public liability and I also have a DBS certificate and a PPL licence for involving music at any events. I also pay proper car insurance as a business, not just personal use like some. I am a fully paid up member of the Booksellers Association and the Society for Storytelling too. I have a B.Sc in Geog and Botany and a Diploma in Business and various other qualifications, I can do Powerpoint presentations and Workshops led by Whiteboard. This is all real cost of living and I am self employed so I do NOT get any benefits or any funding.

I do a fab Careers talk called 'Dare to Dream' which one head of KS3 described as 'The best advice you will ever hear' to his pupils.

I already have a Dahl show written and my Aesop to Andersen too, my Vikings in the NW and sagas are always well received and I am prepping a Seuss and a Julia and Axel Show too, I also have a Spook's show officially endorsed by Joseph Delaney.

So, by all means book the real article, they are utterly fabulous and I love helping anyone who comes to my patch, I revert to taxi and sales and that is fine, but if you can't get them or can't afford them then give me a call!  07914636545

I hope some of you see that I am here and can be used and will always give my upmost to enliven, enrich and entertain and educate...

Much Thanks and I hope to see some of you soon...