I'm attending the annual autumn seminar organised by the Independent Publishers Guild of Great Britian in London this week, and this year its topic is 'International Trade- The Hidden Gems.'

The Seminar will help independent publishers to make the most of their overseas business, identifying some territories they might not have considered in addition to providing up to date information on established export markets including North America, Australia and Ireland. It will provide some tips for dealing successfully with customers around the world.

Although not directly involved in exporting I do retain certain rights to all my novels, including translation rights, TV and film, audio and e book and other rights, and my business books and novels are sold in overseas territories, so it pays to keep abreast of developments. Being a former independent publisher myself, I expect I will know many people there, and it will be good to catch up on the latest news. My own publishers might even be attending! As an author I believe it is important to understand the market in which I operate, but then I guess that's partly due to my marketing and PR background. Even if I pick up one thing from the seminar it will be worth it. I will happily pass on any 'hidden gems' I think worthwhile, although I am conscious that many 'friends' on this web site are from America rather than Britain.

It also gives me the excuse to visit London ( as if I needed one). Dinner in the Union Jack Club at Waterloo and a stroll along the Embankment, soaking up the atmosphere of this lively, gritty place, the smell of the Thames with its barges and river trips, and across the water, the maginificent Houses of Parliament, and Big Ben. Looking forward to it.

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