Two things today, chaps:
1) After much deliberation by the judge (me), Johnny Depp has been declared the winner in the long-running Who-should-play-Robin-Hood-in-the-movie-versions-of-my-books competition. Now all we need to do is convince Mr Depp himself and a few powerful Hollywood types to get the ball rolling. The judge also ruled that while Sean Bean has excellent chops as actor, he was a little on the senior side to play Robin.
2) I have some exciting news about the Golden Arrow scheme.
I was at a party a while back and I was explaining the Golden Arrows scheme to this guy who works in marketing. He seemed impressed to start with when I explained that I rewarded anyone who helped me to publicize the books on the internet by awarding them a notional Golden Arrow. I told him that I liberally awarded GAs to anyone who told me that they had done something to merit it – for example, if someone had posted an image of the cover of King’s Man on a website they would get a GA; if they bigged me up in a chatroom about Robin Hood, likewise. RT-ing my Tweets, I decided, was worth a quarter of a GA (and some of you need to remind me that I owe you GAs for this!)
“That sounds pretty original,” said my marketing friend. “And what does the winner get as his/her prize?”
I beamed at him: “The winner – the guy or gal with the most Golden Arrows at the end of July – gets a free, signed hardback copy of Warlord!”
The man’s face fell: “Is that it?” he said. “A free book? That’s all you are giving away? I thought at the very least it would be a free five-star holiday for two somewhere tropical.”
I was crushed, I admit it. “But the people who want to help me publicize my books, really like them,” I bleated. “And people seem to like getting free books – and I’ll write a personal message to the winner in the book . . .”
But I had lost my audience. The marketing guy turned away to talk to someone far more original, dynamic and PR-savvy than me.
So – not my finest hour. But the thing is, I can’t afford to send the winner of the Golden Arrows competition on a Caribbean cruise or whatever. I can afford to send them a free book. But I did take what he said on board so . . . drum roll, please . . . this is my amazing new annoucement about the Golden Arrows prize. Pause, pause, pause. Are you all ready for this?
I will be giving away THREE, count ‘em, THREE signed copies of Warlord to the three people with the most Golden Arrows. Hows about that then? Eh? Can’t say fairer than that.
The competition ends on July 31st and all you have to do to earn yourself those glittering GAs is do some little thing on the internet that promotes either King’s Man (the paperback version is being published on July 5th) or Warlord (the hardback comes out on July 19th) and, crucially, to tell me about it by email or Twitter. Doesn’t have to be much – just go on a Robin Hood website and recommend my books to the folks there. Or blog about my books or Tweet about them or start an e-fan club, anything really.
There is a scoreboard on the Home page of this website which lists the number of GAs earned so far, but it’s quite difficult to update, so it won’t always be bang up to date. But I am keeping score in a file here on my desk at home so your efforts will not be ignored.
OK, good luck everyone and may the best bowman win!