Hello from an old member!

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Globalti
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Hello from an old member!

Post by Globalti » 25 Jun 2015, 12:30

Greetings all, I haven't posted on here for a few years (anybody know when I last posted?) and have had to re-register as Globalti when i think I used to post as BenR or Ben-R, as I couldn't remember my password and after several attempts over a few weeks I got locked out.

Anyway I'm back. Have given up on the mountain biking and Land-Rovering and am now a committed road cyclist, although not sufficiently committed to shave my legs! My son aged 16 and I have recently discovered the very good new cycle track at Nelson run by Cycle Sport Pendle: http://www.cyclesportpendle.org.uk/ so we've been down a couple of times and found the training and coaching beneficial and good fun.

I have been thinking in recent years that there might be a book inside me and the idea that is beginning to float around my head is of an historical novel in the form of a narrative by a young man who goes to work in the traditional way in a cotton mill but becomes interested in engineering, joins a mill engine manufacturer and ends up being sent to the gold mines in Johannesburg to install and commission their pumping and winding engines. This would bring together my love of old engines, my interest in historic technological development and in emigration and my love of Africa, where I went down a gold mine in SA not three weeks ago! There's a wealth of knowledge and experience out there, some of it inhabiting this forum so I'm hoping to have some enjoyable and interesting conversations with the good people on here.

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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by PanBiker » 25 Jun 2015, 13:32

Welcome back to the site Globalti, the site has been modified somewhat since you first registered as BenR. That was on 28th January 2012 on here, your records show no posts on this platform but you may have registered and posted on the previous site which unfortunately suffered a major crash and was replaced by this later generation platform. What remains of the old forum can be accessed as read only on the Archive link from the home page.

If you want to add your name to your posts you can do that in your user control panel / profile settings / signature.

Have a good look round, we look forward to your posts.
Ian

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Stanley
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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Stanley » 26 Jun 2015, 03:55

Welcome back 'globalti' (Ian is right, a name on the post would be nice....). The book you describe is a carbon copy of a local lad who did exactly the same thing. Look at Horace Thornton's transcripts in the LTP (on the site) and look on the site search and Google for keywords like 'Sons of Gwalia' You might find some interesting clues that could give you inspiration!
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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Tizer » 26 Jun 2015, 09:52

Hello Gobalti. If you haven't already read it, this novel by E.V. Thompson will probably interest you.
`Brothers in War'
1915: Ben Retallick is asked by a War Office friend to provide two traction engines for a secret expedition attempting to take two gunboats overland from Cape Town to Lake Tanganyika - more than 3,000 miles - to wrest control of the lake from the Germans. He sends engines with young Ruddlemoor as the driver, who meets a Portuguese East African nurse and takes her side against a group of white racist south Africans. Meanwhile Antonia St Anna is influential in having Ben released, when he is arrested on circumstantial evidence provided by a business rival and accused of being pro-German. In Brothers in War, E. V. Thompson returns to his acclaimed Retallick saga, immersing the family in the upheaval of the First World War and, through them, creating a captivating tale of love and war, loyalty and betrayal, loss and adventure that weaves its way from Cornwall to the uncharted territory of the depths of Africa - and an eventful conclusion in Cornwall once more.

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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Globalti » 28 Jun 2015, 08:36

Thanks, I've just ordered that for £2.60 posted from Ebay!

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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Tizer » 28 Jun 2015, 09:41

That's good news and I'm sure you'll enjoy the book. I note you mention your love of Africa. I was born in Blackburn but my mother came from South Africa, having married my father (also Blackburn born) when he was in SA with the RAF during WW2 and coming with him to Lancashire at the end of the war. She was born and raised in Port Elizabeth, as was her father. We think her grandfather was born in Colesberg and baptised in PE in the 1860s. I've never been to SA. When I was a child in the 1950s we couldn't afford anything more than the usual July week in a Blackpool boarding house and my parents only went back to SA once, in the 1980s when my father had some cash from retirement. I didn't go when apartheid was in full sway because I wouldn't have been able to cope with it - I'd have got myself into trouble! After that my wife and I were too busy running our own business with no time for holidays. And now I'm not able to travel far for health reasons. But I've always felt that Africa is an exciting and beautiful country, and it has vast mineral resources and potential - which the Chinese seem to have recognised and exploited. It's ironic that Britain had so much influence in Africa, then we threw it away and now the Chinese are taking our place.

If you want to write and publish a book you could follow Stanley Graham's route of self-publishing on the Lulu web site and I'm sure he'd point you in the right direction. And other members will have plenty of information to help you on engines etc. Good luck with the idea!
Tizer

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Stanley
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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Stanley » 29 Jun 2015, 05:22

G, at one point I decided to 'empty my head' and wrote and published 22 books on Lulu in under two years. I'm not suggesting you should do the same but it's a good route and avoids hassles and delays finding a publisher. It's free as well! One warning, find yourself a good and dedicated editor, I had one not too far from Tiz and she looked after me perfectly.....
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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Globalti » 29 Jun 2015, 12:15

Yes, I have a small amount of experience of the relationship with editors having written a few articles for a cycling magazine and more recently a short story for a soon-to-be-published compilation about the Pen Y Gwryd hotel in Snowdonia. Actually I find the process of rewriting and refining text enjoyable thanks to the miracle of word processing; it's always gratifying when you try a different way of expressing something then sit back and see how much neater and clearer it looks. However it is time-consuming and I'm envious of writers who can rattle off perfect prose with little need for correction.

What about self-publishing though? My grandfather was a prolific self-publisher of rather dull verse and I have grown up with the prejudice, possibly mistaken, that a few people self-publish stuff that no publisher wants in order to satisfy their egos. However I can see that the traditional book is struggling hard to compete with other media where the word will never see paper. At the forefront of this trend must be Wikipedia, which must have wiped out the traditional encyclopedia.

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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Stanley » 30 Jun 2015, 03:45

Lulu is self-publishing and yes I did it for my own reasons. The first was my life story for my kids as I wanted it in book form so they could have it for reference. Funny thing is lots of other people bought it..... Same with the other books. Don't knock it, well made solid paperbacks and cheaper that photocopying and self binding....
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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Globalti » 30 Jun 2015, 08:14

As I wrote, it's an old prejudice and I really do need to understand how self-publishing beats the traditional route. Presumably once you've ordered the first edition and the books actually arrive, you need to sell them? - assuming that was your intention at least. If the established publishers don't think your book will sell in sufficient numbers they won't be interested so this has to be the way of producing small runs of very specialised books for a limited market. How does Lulu make this pay as a business? By taking advantage of the huge economies offered by digitisation?

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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Tizer » 30 Jun 2015, 10:06

Lulu provide an online platform to guide you through all the stages of planning, writing, submitting, promoting and selling your book. You create the book file in word processor format, upload it to the Lulu site where you can convert it to a PDF file, and then go through the steps to lay it out as a book, choosing format, number of pages etc. One copy is then printed and sent to you and you are charged for one book. If you then want to make changes you can do so, have another proof printed and so on. If you change your mind you can stop without paying anything more. The web site also lets you work out the price for the book which will cover Lulu's costs and profit and and your profit margin. Lulu is also a bookseller and you can choose to sell your book through Lulu only, or Lulu and Amazon, or bring in other booksellers. Lulu will print the books `on demand', i.e. a book is only printed when a book is ordered, and will mail it to the customer.

You would have your own web page (one for each book title) on the Lulu site, so people can browse or search the site and find your books. If you want also to have copies and sell the book yourself you pay Lulu the basic costs for the book minus your profit margin. They then order the requisite number of copies to be printed off at a digital printer and mailed to you; they are a US based company and if you are in the UK they'll have it printed there, not in the US. They will get an ISBN number for you but you keep the copyright to the book. It's a very flexible system, have a look at their web site. You can also do an e-book through Lulu which does away with the printing and mailing aspects and lets buyers download direct from the Lulu site. Your profit from books sold by Lulu goes into your Lulu account in US$ and you need a Paypal account to receive it as UK£ or accept a cheque in US$ (and incur bank charges) - unless they have changed their policy (I haven't used Lulu for some years now).

The Lulu shopfront is here: http://www.lulu.com/shop
Enter `Bancroft' in the search field and you'll be shown Stanley's book on Bancroft Mill, both paper and e-book versions.
Click on the Create, Sell and Learn links to see more about how to publish.

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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Globalti » 30 Jun 2015, 12:20

Gosh that really is an astonishingly good use for the internet isn't it! Thanks for the information, I am not planning anything in the immediate future because this is a long-term project that will be for retirement in seven years from now, assuming I don't lose my marbles like my poor old Dad did at the age of 55. At the moment life is too much filled with work, family and trying to keep fit and slim in the limited time and weather available.

Internet users might be interested in some really fascinating, time-wasting sites that I have found and that wouldn't have been possible without the web:

Ever looked up and wondered where that 'plane is going as it passes over your head leaving a vapour trail? Find it on here and click on it for flight information, zoom out and marvel at the amount of traffic, but lack of flights over Africa: http://www.flightradar24.com/53.43,-3.1/8

Ever wanted to see the world and the winds that bring us our weather? Thumbwheel mouse needed for zooming: http://earth.nullschool.net/#current/wi ... ,51.59,446

Ever wondered where that footpath or bridleway lies on the actual terrain? http://wtp2.appspot.com/wheresthepath.htm

Ever wondered where all those cyclists and runners go to cycle and run? Marvel at the popularity of your local roads and trails and the almost complete lack of running or cycling for leisure in Africa:

http://labs.strava.com/heatmap/#4/8.387 ... /blue/bike

Edit: perhaps I'd have the time to write a book if I didn't waste so much on the internet!

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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Wendyf » 30 Jun 2015, 15:35

I'm already suffering from an addiction to flightradar.....hang on a tick while I check out that plane. :geek:

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Stanley
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Re: Hello from an old member!

Post by Stanley » 01 Jul 2015, 03:25

Tiz has given a very clear description of how Lulu works. It really is as good as that and the books are good quality....
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