Crooked Cat Publishing

Crooked Cat Publishing was my first choice of publisher for my father’s book.

It’s an independent Edinburgh-based publisher run by husband and wife team, Laurence and Steph Patterson. Between them, they have years of experience in writing, manuscript editing, reviewing and critiquing and marketing.

My first book, Tomorrow’s Anecdote, a 1980s newsroom mystery set against the backdrop of Thatcherism, found a home there. The story was more autobiographical than you might think, and I was soon thanking my lucky stars to find a publisher with a hands-on yet sensitive approach. 

(Note: the rest of this piece is going to sound like an Oscars speech, but I don't care.)

Although originally an epublisher, Crooked Cat now busily distributes its growing collection of books in various genres in electronic and paperback formats to all manner of mainstream sites, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Extended ebook distribution goes out to Sony and Apple, while titles are also available to purchase and download in three different formats at the Crooked Cat Books website. Dark thrillers are a strong point and I hoped that my father’s edgy 1970s thriller would appeal.

A key factor was that paperback versions of CC releases are also available for trade purchase. My aim was to be able to publish my father’s book – and send my stepmother Maggie her own copy of Not With A Whimper, with my Dad’s name in very big letters on the front. To my continued astonishment, this is actually happening.

So, I submitted the first three chapters and they seemed to go down well. After Laurence invited me to send the full manuscript, it was a nail-biting time. Happily, I didn’t have to wait long. When I read the email of acceptance, I laughed and cried at the same time, while doing a silly dance in the kitchen. The dogs thought I had gone quite mad.

Soon after, I was introduced (electronically) to an experienced editor, which was a boost, for up to that point, the whole responsibility had been mine. It was also entertaining and Simon and I quickly developed a lively working relationship. After this, the design process was a great experience. Laurence had some fantastic ideas and suggested that the cover had to be ‘retro’ to a certain extent, for the book was written during the Cold War, but that it needed a modern twist to appeal to a contemporary audience. The end result is a triumph of both and I couldn’t be more pleased. It has CC’s trademark gloss and sophistication and passes my personal test of being to look great on an airport bookstand.

Another reason for selecting CC was the online writers' circle and over the past few months I’ve been extremely grateful for their advice, humour and encouragement. I’m lucky enough to have met several CC authors in the flesh (as well as Laurence and Stephanie who are even more delightful in person), and I’m looking forward to meeting even more soon. Crooked Cat's enlightened approach to this funny old business is infectious and quite modern, and the lines of communication are just excellent. I love seeing CC authors being represented in the various literary awards and get a thrill when CC titles whiz up the Amazon charts. 

On behalf of my father, who would have relished this experience, I wish Laurence and Steph and all the CC authors continued inspiration and success.

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