Knowing that my own novel is due out in September, people keep asking me how I feel about the ‘official’ Anthony Horowitz Sherlock Holmes novel due out at the same time, writes Charlotte Anne Walters.
Well, it just seems a bit unfair to herald this as something new when there have actually been many excellent Holmes pastiche novels written over the years, though this will be the first to be officially endorsed by the Doyle family. And why Anthony Horowitz? No offense to him but why not chose someone who is already an accomplished Holmes writer, even if they are not a household name?
I suppose for me personally, it feels like a bit of a David and Goliath moment, as if competing with Guy Ritchie and his blockbuster film isn’t hard enough! Here I am, a complete unknown who has spent seven years writing my novel in-between working full time, with limited marketing, no advance, desperately hoping that the bookstores will even stock Barefoot, let alone sell thousands.
It makes me feel like starting a campaign similar to the one in December 2009 to stop the X Factor winner gaining the coveted Christmas No 1 in the UK. Let an ordinary person claim victory for once, not something or someone with a massive marketing campaign, lots of funding and a name which opens doors.
How great would it be to see a new unknown writer with a specialist Holmesian publisher (MX Publishing) up there in the bestseller lists? Not only would it change my life, but it would also open doors for the many other fantastic Holmes writers out there.
This is not meant as a slight against Mr Horowitz in any way, I’m sure he is a great writer; my boys certainly love his Alex Rider series of books. It just doesn’t feel like a very level playing field right now that’s all and perhaps it’s just jealousy on my part, but it’s going to be hard to compete with a famous author and the marketing machine of Orion, his publisher.
But, compete I shall. And who knows, Barefoot might just be this year’s Killing in the Name (By Rage Against the Machine – Christmas number one 2009 – not by an X Factor finalist).
If you agree, then all you have to do is download or pre-order Barefoot on Baker Street from Amazon in vast quantities! Just follow the link here.
Or at least ‘like’ the Barefoot on Baker Street Facebook page.