It’s Finshed at Last … !!

At long last my book, ‘In Harmony’, is finished and now on sale from Toubador Publishing or from Amazon. If you have been waiting with bated breath, your wait is over and you can go ahead and order your copy just as soon as you please.

The work for me is not yet over as I have 100 copies to sell in my local area. The Book Shop in Nantwich is carrying some copies on a ‘sale or return’ agreement and so is my local garage. I have already obtained permission to sell them at my line dance classes and at the country music clubs that I attend regularly.

One or two people have told me that they are waiting for the e-book which will be out before the end of November.

Here is a picture of the back cover of the book

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How do you know when you are meeting a potentially useful contact?

The short answer is that you probably don’t know it at the time.

I have met many people who share my interest in country music during my travels round the country music scene in both the UK and in the USA, particularly in Nashville. The majority of the people I have got to know are musicians, singers or songwriters, and some are also producers or promoters. Others friends are, like me, music lovers who love to attend the many country music festivals and clubs around the country in order to see their favourite artists in action, as well as getting to hear artists who they’ve not seen before.

Ever since I joined the country music scene I have always made a point, wherever possible, of trying to get to speak to the artists I like. I frequently follow up their gigs with an e-mail to them to say how much I enjoyed their performance. As a result I have made some very good friends.

It is an amazing discovery when you find out that some of those friends and acquaintances that you’ve made, sometimes several years ago, prove to be such invaluable contacts at a later date. I was not consciously ‘net-working’ but, as it turns out, this is what in effect I was doing. Up till recently it had never even occurred to me that any of these people would be in a position to be able to help me complete my book. Most of those friendships had been made before the book was even a blip on the horizon.

While writing my book the time came to think about the cover design and I needed to get some blurbs for the back cover of the book. I thought it would be good to try and get blurbs from some of the people who had worked with Jack and Misty in the past, all well known people in Nashville. A few possibilities came to mind and Jack’s daughter, Kathi, suggested a couple more names for me to consider. I chose six people to ask and I set about trying to contact them. I already had the contact details for two of them, as I had met them on one or more of my previous visits to Nashville, but for the other four I needed to do some detective work. Being in the public eye, they kept their private e-mail addresses and phone numbers just that …. private.

However, I had recently met someone who I knew would be able to contact two of them as he had been working with them both not many months before. He kindly agreed to forwarded my e-mail on to them and they responded quickly to my request, so now I had four out of the six blurbs I wanted.

The other two proved to be much more elusive. I searched the internet for any contact details I could find, but I was getting nowhere fast. I was getting no response to my e-mails or, if I phoned, I was reaching publicity or merchandising staff who had no idea how to get a personal message up the hierarchy to the man at the top. I tried contacting some people I knew in Nashville who I thought might know how to get a message to them in person, but they were unable to help me.

Suddenly I remembered someone from the UK who I had met a few times over the last year or two. I knew that this guy had many Nashville contacts, so I asked him if he had the phone number for one of these two elusive people. He didn’t have it, but he knew someone in Nashville whom he was certain would have it as he was a close friend of the person I was trying to contact. My UK contact kindly forwarded my e-mail to his friend in Nashville, who then phoned his friend, passing on my request. A few hours later I received an e-mail with the blurb I wanted.

I had given up hope of hearing from the sixth guy, having had no response to my e-mails or phone messages. Then, five weeks later, he replied to one of my e-mails with the long awaited blurb. If he’d left it much longer he would have missed the deadline for it to be included in the book, but he made it on time … just. As a bonus, my proofreader, who has been a fan of Jack and Misty for most of her life, gave me a seventh blurb.

I now had another problem. I had asked for one or two-liner blurbs, but most of my contributors had written much longer ones. How were we going to fit them all onto that back cover? The answer was to extract a highlight from each one for the cover, with the full text of the blurbs being placed inside the book. I checked with the contributors to see that they were happy with this solution and they all agreed with it.

I am so very grateful to all my contacts who made getting these blurbs possible, and to each one of those contributors.

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Proofreading … a bigger job than anticipated

The proofreading is taking much longer than I had anticipated. Each time I receive corrected proofs back from the publishers I hope that we have got all the mistakes rectified, only to find that I or my proofreader, Alice, have found yet more corrections are needed.

My travels round the USA have caused further delays as there were some days when I did not have computer access or else I was spending most of the day driving … but I am back in the UK now.

The next round of proof corrections are due this coming week … so we live in hope !!!

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Patience is needed …

I have just found out that I won’t have copies of my book quite as early as I had hoped. I have been told to expect to wait three weeks after giving my final approval before it will be printed. Then there is delivery time on top of that.

I am awaiting the final corrected proofs now. They should be with me early next week and, so long as I or my proofreader don’t find any more errors, I can then give my approval for it to go to press.

The front cover is approved, so work will start shortly on the back cover.

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Distribution will start in earnest in late October, all being well. Meanwhile, I am telling everyone I meet about it and have met with quite a bit of interest from a number of people.

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Making Progress with my Book

My book, ‘In Harmony’, is making good progress. I am now at the stage of proofreading and marking up corrections on the typeset manuscript. An author friend of mine is helping me by supplying, not only a second pair of eyes, but also her expertise and experience as a proofreader. She has picked up many points that I would have overlooked, mostly commas or full-stops (periods) that are surplus to requirements … or missing. She has also picked up on some transposed or duplicated words, plus the occasional omitted word.

I had to transfer all these corrections onto the manuscript, using the ‘Proof Correction Marks’ on the sheet supplied to me by my publishers. I have just put the manuscript with the corrections into the post to the publisher.

Hopefully, after one more final proof, it will be ready for me to sign off as ready to print.

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Who are Jack Blanchard and Misty Morgan?

Just who are Jack and Misty?  Do these names mean anything to you? Are you a fan, or have you never heard of them? Whether you know anything about them or not, you will be fascinated by their story — a story of their life as hard-working musicians, knowing hardship and sometimes danger; their rise to fame and fortune during their heyday, right through to their come-back in the digital age, long after many people thought that they had disappeared from the scene for ever.

Jack and Misty, who live in Florida, are award winning country music stars who have worked alongside most of the well-known stars of their generation. Both were born and brought up in Buffalo, NY, and have lived in Florida since the late fifties. After working for many years in clubs and bars around Orlando and Miami, they recorded and released their song, ‘Tennessee Birdwalk’, which became huge hit, unexpectedly shooting them to fame in 1970. For this song they won a Grammy nomination and the prestigious Billboard Magazine Award for Duet of the Year. They were up against stiff competition for the Grammy, which was won that year by Johnny Cash and June Carter.

They are known for their unique and distinctive harmonies, with Misty’s beautiful alto voice harmonizing perfectly with Jack’s deep gravelly voice, which has been described as a ‘velvet saw’. They are both fine keyboard players and Jack also plays various guitars, including lap steel. They have seen and experienced the highs and lows of the music industry and have had many exciting adventures along the way.

Their song, ‘Tennessee Birdwalk’, was the catalyst that brought Jack and Misty and myself together after I heard it on internet radio and, since we first met in 2007, a close friendship has formed between us.

The book is available now from the publishers and from Amazon http://authl.it/

It is available in both as a paperback and as an e-book.

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Welcome to Moragh’s Book World

Welcome to my book world.

I have just completed my first book, a biography of my country music friends in Florida, the award winning duo, Jack Blanchard and Misty Morgan.  The title of the book is “In Harmony”, with the sub-title: a biography of Jack Blanchard and Misty Morgan.

As from November 2012, it is available to purchase from either Troubador Publishing http://www.troubador.co.uk/book_info.asp?bookid=2015  or from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com as a paperback or as an e-book. I have also found it on a number of other book websites, including a site in India.

I am adding the reviews that I have received from other sources to the review page on the Troubador website so that they are all viewable in one place

Please find out more about the book by going to the publishers book page using the same link as given above. You can also read about why I wrote it, and how I went on during the various stages of writing it, by reading my earlier posts on this blog.

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