I'm sometimes asked how and why did I start Clarendon House.
I wrote my book How Stories Really Work over a couple of years and published it in 2016, figuring that, because it exposed and explored the fundamentals of storytelling, it would just sell and that was that. It did sell, and has continued to sell — and to garner five star reviews all over the world — but not as much as I had naively hoped. So I went deeper (it’s what I tend to do) and figured out some of the fundamentals about marketing. I saw that to just write and publish one book would not be enough — I needed loads more. And to wait for someone to come along and publish them would take years — I could do it myself.
Hence Clarendon House, which was a vehicle for my own works at first.
Then I read a key piece of advice: if you want to make your dreams come true, make others’ dreams come true first. I realised that Clarendon House could be a vehicle for others too. And so it began.
Why ‘Clarendon’? Here’s something I’ve never told anyone before: the house I grew up in as a child, from which I was torn to travel to Australia at the age of 8, was called ‘Clarendon’. (Sort of like ‘Rosebud’ in Citizen Kane, yes?) After 26 years (to the day) I came back to England and a few years later I now live within a few hundred yards of that original house.
Plus 'Clarendon' has a nice ring to it I think.
But it wasn't easy to get it established.
The difficulties were and are the same facing everyone trying to build a dream: cashflow and bills. It’s like trying to build an island in the middle of an ocean surrounded by sharks. You stack a brick above the surface and lose a limb below. The tricks are persistence and creativity: I am still here, when on paper everything should have collapsed ages ago, and I’m still in super-create mode to outwit the sharks.
And this is just the beginning.