Messrs Lowry

With some anxiety about meeting new people, which is something I will have to overcome eventually, I went down to my up-and-coming publisher and met the proprietors today. Since my sister Abigail had already been there, done that, I had no real qualms about meeting the fellows themselves. It was the newness of the thing that made me get up this morning with an upset stomach and butterflies in my middle. A new chapter - or a new paragraph - in my own story. It had not yet dawned on me until that moment that I was moving ahead into the wild, uncertain rapids of the publishing world. I could not gauge how I was going to react, though I promised myself I would conduct the affairs with an admittedly bewildered smile and as much decorum as I could.

I found Messrs Lowry to be charming. Both of them are gently-spoken and articulate, something a young lady appreciates. I have had people speak very firmly and frighteningly at me, which does nothing in selling one's services. Added to that, they had paintings and wood-cuttings of many of the great lights of Christian history hanging in their building, such as Wycliffe and Cranmer, Knox and Luther. It helped to dumb down the feeling of strangeness to see so many familiar faces looking back at me. So with these illustrious fellows watching over us, we discussed the matter of book-making.

Mr Lowry, the father, had read through The Shadow Things. He found it similar in style to Abigail's book The Soldier's Cross, which is a compliment, and discovering that Abigail and I are related, he was adamant about having the two books come out simultaneously, in time for Christmas. Thankfully Abigail and I get along swimmingly, two peas in a pod, so jealousy will be at a minimum. Mr Lowry, the son, very kindly asked me if I had any questions and, since I'm new to all this and can't even formulate questions, answered the most common ones for me. They are down-to-earth, God-fearing folk, and it is rather a relief to have my book washing up on their doorstep so favourably.

The next leg of the trip is to run over the contract and sign it with them, sealing my story's fate in their hands. Their designer, Mr David, has asked me to look over book covers that I like to give him an idea of what I would like for The Shadows Things. Never a dull moment!

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