You know me, never one to moan (inevitably followed by) but – I’m not happy.
I might not have done much but what I have done I’ve done without anyone’s help (apart from Sue of course). Unlike The Real Bread Campagne I don’t feel I’m entitled to public money – which is just as well because I’ve never been offered any.
But I have produced three books – written them, done the photographs, the layout, had them printed, published and sold them. In the case of the Welsh one I’ve paid out a good sum for the translation. In Wales it seems that nothing gets published without a grant from the Welsh Book Council but they don’t recognise us as being a publisher. Still, we persevere.
And as I’ve produced the books I’ve donated copies to the local library.
Last week I get a letter from The National Library of Wales, no less, which says, In compliance with the provisions of the Legal Deposit Libraries Act 2013, we would be grateful if you would send us one copy each of the works listed below – Bethesdabasics; Bara Blas, Microbakin. You’ll be surprised to hear I was just a little angry, to the extent that Sue had to phone them up. They couldn’t say exactly how the the books had come to their attention but admitted that they search the net for all likely sources.
While I was packing my bags to go down to Aberystwyth to kick their windows in – you have to make use of your bus pass – use it or lose it -Sue was doing a quiet bit of research that showed that only books published within 12 months of the Act are included in its provisions so Bethesdabasics and Microbakin’ are in the clear. So, never mind the Legal Deposit Libraries Act 2013, Section 15 of the Theft Act 1968 – Attempting to Obtain by Deception appears to be the more relevant piece of legislation.
I’m seriously pissed off because they could only have been aware of the existence of the books because I donated them to the local library (two of the books aren’t registered anywhere else) and that, in these times of austerity when local libraries in Wales are being closed, The National Library of Wales employs a snoop (otherwise known as the Acquisitions Librarian) to track down people like me who produce books without support from anyone else.