24-Hour Book Launch

Dean Nicholas
By Dean Nicholas Last edited 110 months ago
24-Hour Book Launch

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While you spent the weekend enjoying a slovenly lay-in and debating whether to dine on eggs benedict or full English for brunch, a dedicated group of writers were busy hammering calloused fingertips at well-worn keys in order to turn out the 24-Hour Book on time.

The idea was a collaboration between writing development network Spread The Word and social reading & publishing website Completely Novel. Working to a fiendishly harsh deadline, the group of writers and editors spent the 24-hour period between 10am Saturday and 10am Sunday cramped over their laptops, a flow of words issuing forth and being fashioned via Google Docs into a unique work of fiction. Not that everybody was chained to the desk: one contributor confessed to taking his character (and hence himself) out on a nocturnal tour of Vauxhall's more insalubrious crannies.

Once the final draft was approved, the text was whisked over to a print-on-demand publisher, and the completed books arrived just minutes ahead of Monday evening's launch at House of St Barnabas, Soho. Happily for all involved, the 100 copies printed for the event all sold out within half an hour. For all the gloomy predictions about publishing's future, the 24-hour book succeeded in drawing attention to the way that social media and on-demand printing technologies are changing the industry, and proved that a world of Kindles and digitised books on Google doesn't mean the death of the physical novel.

So, is the novel, which concerns a group of allotments in Vauxhall and the characters who toil there, any good? You'll have to find out yourself: A Vauxhall Chorus is available to order from Completely Novel, priced £4.99.

Last Updated 06 October 2009