One of the weirder nights of my life. For years I’ve sung the joys of self-publishing, the excitement of sending off files and getting bound copies back within weeks. Today I came unstuck. I used a firm I’ve used three times before. I sent them the files on February 11. they kept reassuring me that they’d keep to my deadline. but they insisted on pdf files and then two weeks later asked for word files. They ignored requests I’d made, and failed to ring me when I’d warned them my e-mail was dodgy. They promised they’d send stuff and then found iou it hadn’t gone. So I’m left at Wenlock Books, with a pleasant and friendly audience listening to me reading extracts from my valuable proof copy – which at present is the only copy in the world. As it happens, it went fine. Before the mess over the copies, I’d thought that Writing for Blockheads was a good idea and would reach an audience, and this evening seems to confirm that view. all we need is a few copies to test it out.