Foreign Encounters Book Launch

I’m a bit late reporting on this event, which took place about 10 days ago. Blame this wretched novel I’m working on for National Novel Writing Month. I have almost reached the requisite 50,000 words but mine is going to be longer than that and some mental stamina is required to get it finished. What’s it about? Set in Corsica, it’s based on the true story I told in this post. I doubt it will ever see the light of day and what started out as a serious literary endeavour is starting to look like Barbara Cartland on a bad day. However, I’ve started so I’ll finish.

Yours truly in listening mode. Terrible photo but the one of me in full flow was even worse, if you can believe it

We celebrated a rather more successful literary effort at the Parisot Médiathèque a couple of Saturdays ago when we had a launch event for Foreign Encounters. The small online writers’ group for ex-pats that I belong to, Writers Abroad, produced this anthology of short stories, non-fiction and poetry. It’s our third anthology and is already selling pretty well. To date we’ve made about 300 euros for our chosen charity, Books Abroad.

Since Writers Abroad has – deliberately – only 18 members, we called for submissions from non-member writers who are, or have been, ex-pats. So no less than seven people from our corner of SW France have contributed pieces to the book. This includes me and Doreen, another member of Writers Abroad who lives in Saint-Antonin. But contributors come from more than 50 countries.

Double act – me left, Doreen right

At our launch event, Doreen and I did a double act. I told the 35 people who turned up about Writers Abroad and our two previous anthologies. Doreen told them how Foreign Encounters came about, with special emphasis on the fact that, since we’re a virtual group, we did all the work online. We fielded a lot of questions, which is always gratifying, and then sold out of all the copies we had brought. We could have sold more but at least people took away a flyer giving details of the book and how to order it.

Christmas is only just over a month away, so if you want to give someone a cracking good read and contribute to a good cause at the same time, look no further than Lulu. Our two previous anthologies, Writers Abroad Short Story Anthology 2010 (stories about ex-pat life: the pleasures and the pain) and Foreign Flavours (stories and non-fiction on food, drink and cooking throughout the world) are also available from that site.

Copyright © 2012 Life on La Lune, all rights reserved

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About nessafrance

My husband and I moved to an 18th-century farmhouse in SW France in 1997. I am fascinated by French history, rural traditions and customs and enjoy seeking out the reality behind the myths. I run my own copywriting business and write short stories and the occasional novel in my spare time. My husband appears here as the SF, which stands for Statistics Freak, owing to his penchant for recording numbers about everything.
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20 Responses to Foreign Encounters Book Launch

  1. Kate Swaffer says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    Thanks for the update about the launch and your NaNoWriMo effort. I am vaguely envious nof your effort as started again this year, but have given in to other writing commitments.
    I had a small amounht of traffice when I publicised your Antholoy on my blog, so hope it filtered through to orders for you?
    Great photos by too, especially of you. 🙂

    Like

    • nessafrance says:

      Hi Kate, Thanks very much for reblogging the information about the anthology. I got some traffic from your site and then clicks on to Lulu, where the book is available, so hopefully that translated into some sales. We’ve sold more than 300 copies and have made about 350 euros so far for our charity. Hopefully the Christmas rush will add a lot more! It was good of you to publicise it – everything helps.
      As for the photos – you’re very kind but the camera does not like me!!

      Like

      • Kate Swaffer says:

        Oh Vanessa, we are all so ‘shy’ about our own photographs! I am hoping to purchase a copy of your anthology soon. And well done on the money raised so far.

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      • nessafrance says:

        Rightly so in my case! I love your photo with your cat. Thank you in advance for buying a copy of the anthology. I hope you enjoy it.

        Like

  2. Deborah says:

    I will work out how to order from Lulu – the collection sounds like a something I will really enjoy. Hats off for the 50,000 words – breakneck speed in a month. And I laughed at the B Cartland worry -a sentiment I can identify with!!

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    • nessafrance says:

      It’s a bit like Amazon – you have to sign up and then you can order. Hope you do enjoy it if you get there. 50K does not necessarily equal quality writing but it does give you an incentive to write. I got there last Tuesday, 20th Nov, and after that it was a bit of a damp squib. You can choose to do more than 50K, which I’ve done, but once you reach the target you kind of lose momentum. Lots of research to do still, too. Oh well…

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  3. chris says:

    Hi Vanessa, Really enjoyed your story “Mr. C.” in the anthology. Haven’t read your other one yet, as I worked my way through all the nonfic and poetry first. Very pleased to be one of the contributors to this great project.

    Like

    • nessafrance says:

      Thanks for your comments about that story. We hope to do another anthology next year (this year’s was our third) so watch this space. Glad to have had your contribution.

      Like

  4. pfornari says:

    Great post, Vanessa, well done! I’m looking forward to the Dhaka launch on 1 December – it’ll be at the British Women’s Association annual Picnic in the Park event. I’ll write to you for some tips!

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  5. Yes I’ve read Kate Mosse too. So far only Labyrinth. My daughter found it hard going because of the ‘time travel’ i guess, but I found it a good read.

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    • sorry this was meant to respond to Amelie. I’m not entirely missing the point! I missed out on the November book writing experience, but am interested for next time. Keep going Vanessa, the end is in sight! Well done on the Writers Abroad Book. I seem to miss out on trying to contribute to all these events…next time!

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      • nessafrance says:

        It’s okay, I’ve worked out the sequence of comments! I decided only to enter NaNoWriMo at the last minute, not having done nearly enough research and planning beforehand. As a result, I will need to revisit large chunks and do a lot more work after the first draft is notionally finished. If I do it again (and it’s a big if) I will prepare better beforehand. As for Writers Abroad, we’ll probably do another anthology next year so watch this space for news about it in the New Year if you’d like to contribute.

        Like

  6. robinnis says:

    Just received my copy and looking forward to reading all of the other contributions – and pleased mine was accepted.

    Like

  7. susancarey says:

    Looks like you did well, Vanessa and Doreen! And don’t give up on Nano, I saw a heartening documentary about Ian Rankin; the first draft of his novel was really rough and he suffered exactly the same anguishes of self-doubt as any other writer.

    Like

    • nessafrance says:

      We were very pleased with the response to our launch. Just hope it translates into more copies sold. My novel is incredibly flawed but I suppose that’s what subsequent drafts a for.

      Like

  8. amelie88 says:

    Have you ever read the books by Kate Mosse (with an E, not the supermodel!) set in southwestern France? I really enjoyed her books Labyrinth and Sepulchre. Maybe you can get inspiration from reading her books for your Corsica story? Also your anthology sounds interesting! Might have to buy a cop of it myself.

    Like

    • nessafrance says:

      I haven’t yet read any Kate Mosse but she’s on my list. I need all the inspiration I can get for my novel but I passed the 50,000 word mark today, which gives one a lift. Yes, do buy the anthology – all in a good cause.

      Like

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