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" If the world is a tree,

we are the blossoms "


Byron’s Paradise

May 12th, 2008

I recently got back from a few days in Portugal. Alexandre and Sofia run a publishing company in Lisbon and they were launching ‘Druid Mysteries’ in the Portuguese edition and asked me over to help promote it. As I traveled around with them, I wished that my daughters were there too, so they could witness what you can achieve if you believe in what you are doing and just get up and do it. Sofia is in her 20s, Alex just 30, and even though they started knowing nothing about publishing, they have learnt how to negotiate foreign rights with other publishers, the best way to produce and distribute books and so on. And now they publish 3 titles a month – really interesting books, beautifully designed.

We were staying in Sintra, 30 km out of Lisbon in such a beautiful spot – in wooded hills with tangerine trees in fruit. A palace, a castle, winding little lanes with picturesque houses. When Byron visited Sintra he thought he had discovered paradise. I think he was right.

We did a day’s workshop under the shade of a huge magnolia tree. Here we all are, only the small fluffy poodle who wandered in and out is missing from the picture: