Defining one’s readership

Talking about my new book (The Naples of England) on Radio Solent last week, I was asked why anybody other those growing up in Weymouth in the 1950s, should be interested in it. I attempted to persuade the interviewer with some not-too-convincing ramble about ‘universal themes’.

Then, a few days later, we watched the beautiful new version of ‘Cider With Rosie’ on the TV. It made me wonder whether anybody might have expected people other than those growing up in an obscure corner of Gloucestershire in and after WW1, to read that book.

I’m not for one moment arrogant or deluded enough to be comparing my writing to Laurie Lee’s. I’m not! Honest! But if I were only one 10,000th as good and if that translated into just one 10,000th of his 6 million worldwide sales, I’d be a very, very happy little author indeed.

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