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Campaign to raise publishing costs for one of the best "indie" historical fiction novels of 2019 - and to bring you immortality!
30 backers pledged £2,731 to help bring this project to life.

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Hello and thanks for taking the time to read this. 

Kickstarter supporters and readers world-wide have already helped me publish six other novels, all fast-paced historical fiction, and I'm hoping that you might come on this journey with me - help me raise the publishing costs for this seventh novel too, The Doubtful Diaries of Wicked Mistress Yale.

Here's a quick summary...

1721, and elderly Catherine Yale discovers that her second husband Elihu has left her nothing in his will except the slur of naming her a “wicked wife.” True, her private journals are filled with intimacies: her inner thoughts about life in Old Madras, where the East India Company’s intrigues are as complex as any in the Mughal Emperor’s court; about the conflicts she must endure as a mother now to the additional children she conceives with Elihu; about her role as a spy for the political factions determined to prevent a Catholic succession to the English crown; and about the realisation that she is now wed to a husband she is quickly coming to despise. Yet these past fifty years, since the early days of her short and tragic first marriage to darling Joseph, the diaries have been kept safe and secret. Or have they? Perhaps it’s time to read them afresh, to go back before the days when Elihu first betrayed her, before she was betrayed also by the East India Company women who should have stood at her side – before she wreaked her own special revenge on them all. 

So why am I wanting to crowd fund for this novel when I've already published previously? Well, I'm an "indie" author so have to raise the costs of publishing the books myself before I can sell them and (hopefully) turn a profit. That's nothing new. It's exactly how writers like John Milton and Mark Twain (plus countless other authors between the 17th and 19th Centuries) always worked. They had to fund their own books, Paradise Lost and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, through ‘subscriptions’, taking pre-orders to cover the publication costs.

I like to write historical fiction in a particular way. To bring some lesser-known but important periods and incidents to a wider public. In this case the story of nabob philanthropist Elihu Yale - who gave his name to Yale University - but told through the eyes of his much-maligned and largely forgotten wife, Catherine. And it's a very different story from the one we think we know. Yale the Indian slave trader. Yale the philanderer. Yale the usurer.

But apart from raising the publishing costs, crowd funding for authors like me has another serious advantage. It’s great to have people "invest" in the book by ordering copies in advance, because this is proper market-testing, proving that there’s real interest in the story. And, just like the subscription books of old, those who help to see it published get the recognition they deserve by having their names listed in the Acknowledgement sections of the book itself.

Like I've said in the video above, if enough people pre-order then I know it's worth going ahead and all those folk who've helped to "make it happen" become part of the team, part of the story itself.

And what a story this one's going to be!

It'll resonate with folk in the USA, anybody who's ever heard of Yale University. But The Doubtful Diaries of Wicked Mistress Yale - the first part of a trilogy - is mostly set in old Madras, so it will also appeal to anybody with an interest in the Indian Sub-Continent. And given Elihu and Catherine's links to Wrexham (North Wales), to London and to Buckinghamshire, this one will have lots of bounce all over the UK too.

It's already picking up some decent reviews ready for its proposed launch date on 8th April 2019. And here’s what best-selling author Vaseem Khan (the Inspector Chopra mysteries) has said about it: "David Ebsworth demonstrates a keen eye for historical detail and evokes, in his exploration of the Indian subcontinent of that period, James Clavell's bestselling Shogun. An excellent adventure yarn."

So I hope you'll be interested in investing in the book; in showing that there are enough potential readers to make its publication worthwhile; in having your name listed on the Acknowledgments pages; in becoming part of the David Ebsworth novels team; and in helping me raise the publication costs in advance - rather than forcing me to live on porridge until the book breaks even and starts making a profit! Thanks again for reading!

Risks and challenges

The novel will be produced using assisted publishing services provided by SilverWood Books, based in Bristol, UK.

SilverWood have published each of the author's previous five novels and are a highly professional company, using a variety of quality printers to ensure that nothing can go wrong in the production process and the deadlines for publication.

And thanks again for taking the time to read this.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £10 or more About US$ 13

    Silver Launch Level

    A special Launch Level reward for those within striking distance of Wrexham, North Wales, and happy to collect in person at one of the Launch Events in and around Wrexham during April 2019. A personally signed copy of the paperback edition plus your name in the supporters' list within the book's acknowledgements section plus limited edition bookmark - and a reserved seat at the Launch Event of your choice! So the condition of this reward is that it should be collected in person rather than mailed to the subscriber.

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    Pledge £15 or more About US$ 19

    Gold Level

    You'll receive a personally signed copy of the paperback edition plus your name in the supporters' list within the book's acknowledgements section plus limited edition bookmark.

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    Pledge £250 or more About US$ 313

    Platinum Level

    You'll receive all the rewards listed in the Gold Level Pledge but also have your name in the dedications on the opening pages as a principal sponsor/patron of the book. In addition, you'll receive a further ten personally signed copies of the paperback to give away as special gifts. And, of course, if you can make it, a place of honour at one of the launch events in and around Wrexham during April 2019.

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Funding period

- (36 days)