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Midsummer Newsletter 2018

Hallo!
Well, the Solstice is here – at 11:07 BST on the 21st – and the days will start getting shorter (if you’re in the Northern Hemisphere, of course; its the reverse if you’re South of the equator). I’m still working on the Diary, but things are going much better than they’ve been for the last couple of years and Things are on course for printing at the end of September.
You can buy your elfin T-shirts, bags and mugs from the site, if you can’t wait. I’ve spruced up the site a little and I’ve done away with most of the T-shirts and other stuff that I’ve had on sale for the last couple of years. Nobody seemed interested in buying them, which was rather disappointing – I thought that everybody would want a splendid gold-on-black Zodiac T-shirt, at the very least. So they’re off the site; however, if somebody wants one still, I’m prepared to do one-off orders.And I’m always on the lookout for new designs that you may like.

Besides the Diary, I’m also busy on a new project. Way back in the Dark Ages before the internet, me & my husband Brian published a small magazine call The Little Red Book. In it, we published a series of very unserious short stories called Tales of Old Todmorden, about a coven of pagans in Yorkshire and their various comic misadventures. We wrote 17 or 18 of these stories and people seemed to like them; for years, we’ve been asked if we can bring out a collection. Well, twenty years on, we’re finally getting around to it!
With luck, the Todmorden Tales will be published in the autumn, in both print and ebook.
I’ve set up a website where you can download one of the stories for free; if you feel the book is worth buying, then you can sign up for email updates there: www.todmordentales.com. Or just contact me.

Well, that’s all the news for now. Enjoy the solstice!

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Update

Well, I’ve been tidying up the website a bit. Because nobody was buying them, I’ve deleted all the Zodiac and Dreamcatcher T-shirts, and the Dreamcatcher mugs and bags. I was quite disappointed that they didn’t sell that much, I thought they were good designs. I’ve also deleted the mousemats and notebooks – again, almost nobody seemed interested in buying them. I may introduce one or two new mug and T-shirt designs, but from now on I think I’ll mainly stick to Diaries.
I’ll soon be bringing out the 2019 Elfin Ts, bags and mugs, so look out for those!

As for the 2019 Diary, it’s still on course for a September printing. Will there be a Desk Diary as well as the softback and harback? I will NOT make any promises – it’s all depends…..

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The Number of the Diary!

I’ve just got an ISSN number for the Elfin Diary. It’s the same as an ISBN number for books, but for periodicals. The Diary’s ISSN is 1368-9134; the advantage of having one is that shops with digitised cataloguing/ordering systems can easily order the D.
I came across ISSNs by accident while looking for something else; the system is operated by the British Library and I will be sending them a copy each year. In my correspondence with the Library I discovered that Caroline had been doing that since the first edition of the Diary in 1990. Thanks to the over zealous executor of her estate who refused me access to her paperwork and records, I had never known that. They’ve requested that I send them Diaries for 2012 – 2016; I’ll have to start digging around in my cupboards!
If anybody reading this has old Elfin Diaries that they don’t want to keep, please let me know – I can probably take them off your hands. There are gaps in my own collection of Ds, especially the ones published in the 1990s before I met Caroline.

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A Word About Privacy

Data privacy and data protection have been in the news a lot lately and no doubt some of you are worried about how safe your online data is. If you’re an Elfin Diaries customer, I can at least reassure you that your data is safe with me; I’ve spent the last few days installing new security software on the site to keep out hackers and other nasties, and looking at how I store customers’ records. Go to the Privacy Policy page for full details.

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Happy Birthday Caroline

Caroline Heaney in the 1980s
Caroline Heaney in the 1980s
Today would have been Caroline Heaney’s 70th birthday. I wish she was still around now, if only to give me her usual forthright and cuttingly honest opinion on how I’ve managed her precious Elfin Diary in the six years she’s been gone.

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Just a quick note…..

….. to let you all know that I’m dealing with your ordes as fast as I can – I’m very aware that many of my Ds are destined to be Chrissie presents.
This is a pic of the present state of my office. It’s normally a lot tidier, but I’m so busy…!
Anyhoo, I’m down to the last 50 or so orders and I hope to get them all out tomorrow.
There will be postal strikes next week, but as the strikers are all Crown Post Office employees, and posties and sorting office staff are still working, I’m not expecting them to interfere much with the Diary deliveries. However, I’ll still try to post out as many as I can before the end of the week.