I’ve been away from my blog for a while, enjoying a busy summer of work at the day job and some family time. I haven’t been ignoring my writing completely though, and I’m delighted to announce I have signed a contract to have my next novel published in the UK by The Book Guild Ltd.

‘The Barra Boy’ is scheduled for release in June 2022. Look out for more announcements over the coming months. I have signed a ‘Partnership Publishing’ contract, which involves the publisher putting in the majority of the expense, while I make a financial contribution as well. For now, my part is done – the book is written! – and the publisher takes over to copy edit, typeset and design ahead of the planned release. Nearer the publication date next summer, there will be a marketing campaign. I’m under no illusion about the chances of making my initial investment back, but there are a few reasons why this felt like a chance worth taking.

The main advantage of going this way instead of self-publishing is access to the traditional publishing model, and hopefully getting my book into the shops and onto the websites of the main bookshops in the UK, alongside the Amazon website. I will also have author copies of the book to sell as signed copies. It’s a step closer to being able to walk into my local bookshop and see one of my books sitting on the shelf! On top of that, it is gratifying to have a publisher acknowledge that my writing is worth investing in, after months and years of effort.

‘The Barra Boy’ takes place on the remote island of Barra in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. It’s a story that looks at the loss of innocence as childhood ends with exposure to the world of adults. There are themes of intolerance, adolescence and awakening, alongside dark secrets, broken lives, as well as a mysterious unexplained death and some adventure. I’m excited to share this story with you, but you’ll have to wait until next summer to read it all!

In the meantime, look out for further updates on here and on social media, and I hope to return to write the occasional bit of short fiction for my blog over the Autumn and Winter.

37 responses to “PUBLISHING NEWS”

  1. Hari Om
    Have certainly missed seeing you come up on my reader page! Spotted this announcement on the insta… and know a couple of other folk who have followed a similar route. This is the trad pub world starting to fight back against all the self-publishing, but sadly, as is so often the case, there are several such ‘publishers’ who are just out to fleece the authors they have ‘invited’. Even the good ones are asking for amounts that equal the cost of self-publishing. Which, I note, is the claim at Book Guild. Forgive me, but I find myself wondering, with three under your belt that are getting fine reviews, is there not an agent that would take you on? Just curious, you don’t have to answer that! (And I am sorry that I still have not reached your books on my TBR file…but they are getting closer!)

    All that said, well done on completing another book and it sounds intriguing – all the very best with how this goes forward. YAM xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Unfortunately, no agent that I sent the manuscript to has come back with any interest. I think it’s a case of not being a right fit at the moment, I’m not from an under-represented minority, I don’t have a tragic back story, I’m not a celebrity, so no agent or publisher is going to take that chance on an unknown in a crowded market unless the writing is really something extraordinary (which I’m not!!). So far, Book Guild have been very good. I sent them the manuscript rather than them inviting me to do so. They are investing money, and have signed the legal contract, so it remains to be seen how much of a service they provide. At the moment I’m feeling positive. I think there is room for this sort of halfway house between the self-publishing and traditional publishing – a little help for authors trying to make some inroads and progress who struggle to do it all themselves. We shall see! Hope you enjoy the books when you get to them, and hope to be back on the blog a bit more often! Hope you are well x

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on Typing Madly and commented:
    I think this post gives us some insight into publication these days – practical aspects, such as payment, promotion, etc. It made me feel excited and also inspired for my own writing endeavors. Congratulations, Iain Kelly!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That is fantastic news! Congrats. That’s the dream, Iain. To walk into a bookshop and see your work on a shelf. There’d be nothing like it, I imagine. Kudos to being accepted by a traditional publisher. I look forward to the release!
    It would be interesting to know how many you’ve sold via the e-book route.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Trish. I’ll be happy with a few sales and seeing it on a shelf in my local bookstore! E-book will be available too. With my previous books e-book sales are roughly the same as paperback, although interestingly, in the US far more e-book sales, in the UK, more paperbacks!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, hoping to be back a bit more regularly now, and thanks for the ratings in Goodreads, it really helps to know people are reading, and enjoying. Look out for more news on the new book nearer the time of publication!


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