Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

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john coffin
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by john coffin »

It is plain that you are not prepared to listen to any help, be it potential helpful, or neutral, however.

I have only said that it is likely that trying to sell two books on the same obscure person in the same year
is likely to be difficult for the second book, since it was late to the market. It might well sell, but considerably
less than had it been the only book on the market at the time.

From all you have written here, I am not convinced that you have any more data about Thompson the man
that would make a second biography too valuable to those who might be interested. You almost certainly have
more information about Thompson than I have access to because I have not been that bothered about him as a
person who figures within my interest range. However I did pick a couple of errors about which I do know some thing,
but then I have not yet found a factual book that some one does not later complain about errors within.

Since I know about publishing a little, I do know for certain that many so called errors in books are nothing to do with the
author rather the sub editing. ALL books require to fit to a certain number of pages, to meet certain price criteria, and
still have a decent readable flow, but few sub editors are experts in all the fields they have to edit, so may not understand
that cutting certain items or changing the flow makes a considerable difference to facts or the story. Once it is with the
subbie, it is very rare for the author to get things changed.

The market for autobiographies is some what small, whilst that for articles about locomotives and their development
has much wider appeal. Is there space for another book on Gresley? Almost certainly because he has a special place
in the heart of most railway enthusiasts, but rather like the William Brown Volume on Hush Hush, or Peter Tuffrey on the 2-8-2's
books that are not directly biographies are most likely to sell widely because they combine things, and
any personal data is merely part of the story.

Just remember that from the outside, you are a man who is prepared to accept model carriages that have no
bearing on the railway they claim to be from, ie the Hattons and Hornby generic carriages as GNR carriages to which
they have no bearing. That makes one question your insistence that others published works are full of errors.

That you are prepared to write and attempt to publish a book on a figure of minor notoriety does you credit,
but don't expect everybody to buy into your views and or your books.

Paul
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richard
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by richard »

I appreciate you're both trying to be polite!
Just remember that from the outside, you are a man who is prepared to accept model carriages that have no
bearing on the railway they claim to be from, ie the Hattons and Hornby generic carriages as GNR carriages to which
they have no bearing. That makes one question your insistence that others published works are full of errors.
However, I think I'm going to have to disagree with the above, and I don't think there's any connection.
Intended modelling accuracy varies a lot depending on a range of things - patience, time, skills, what can you actually see, etc. There are always compromises. Some glaring - even for the finescale guys/gals! (all those statue people!)
I don't think this necessarily correlates with historical accuracy.

As for two books at the same time: Happens a lot. Also with movies. I think we have to trust the publisher to make the right decision either way.
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S.A.C. Martin
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

Thank you Richard for your response.

The coaches thing is an odd thing to pick out - I work up to 60 hours a week, I concentrate a lot of effort on other things, I don't build as much as I used to: why does that somehow define the entire nine years worth of research work I have put into writing my book on Thompson?

Regarding the information and research I have collated - I am confident in my work. Happily I have several new sources and have the stats and graphical analysis to back it up.
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NZRedBaron
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by NZRedBaron »

So, I've just watched the Railway Mania podcast about Edward Thompson; and I have to admit, the thing did give me a lot of food for thought.

I'd always viewed Thompson as being a difficult man personally, but a talented and experimental engineer working in an equally difficult time and place; but having listened to the podcast, it cast new light on the situation, and gave me a greater measure of respect for him.
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

Morning all,

Just to keep you in the loop, as per on Nat Pres. I am awaiting the final copy for editing and approval from my publisher ahead of printing very shortly. Exciting times!

Best wishes

Simon
NZRedBaron wrote: Mon May 24, 2021 6:06 am So, I've just watched the Railway Mania podcast about Edward Thompson; and I have to admit, the thing did give me a lot of food for thought.

I'd always viewed Thompson as being a difficult man personally, but a talented and experimental engineer working in an equally difficult time and place; but having listened to the podcast, it cast new light on the situation, and gave me a greater measure of respect for him.
That podcast remains one of the finest bits of work I am associated with, and the opportunity Corbs gave me to bring the evidence to a wider audience I remain very grateful for.
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

We are in the endgame now!

Final edits accepted, I’m awaiting the print ready copy. Printing within a few weeks I believe.

The book is being published by Strathwood Publishing. I’m very grateful to Kevin Derrick for his support and hard work over the last six months.
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

NEW THOMPSON COVER_resized.jpg
Now at the printers and incoming from Strathwood Publishing. :)

Ten years I have been working on this...! So happy to finally see it in print.
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

Just a heads up to say that the book is now in the warehouse and being shipped out shortly. Exciting times. :)
Pyewipe Junction
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by Pyewipe Junction »

I've ordered this as a Christmas present to myself.

From what I have read in the preceding pages, the book must contain a great deal of factual information to present a true picture of Thompson's thinking and achievements. However, at the same time, I do hope it is readable for the general enthusiast and not just a collection of technical jargon and statistics.

Nor, for that matter, a hagiography.

I note that the subtitle of the book 'A Wartime CME' could be viewed as defensive and possibly loaded. The fact that Thompson was CME during WWII does not excuse any shortcomings he may have had as a designer. After all, the choices he made were his own and not the only ones available to him.

For the record, I think far too much of the evaluation of Thompson has been based on subjective evaluations of his character and personality, and whether he had a deep-seated dislike of Gresley which was actuated once he had been appointed CME.
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

Pyewipe Junction wrote: Thu Nov 18, 2021 7:19 am I've ordered this as a Christmas present to myself.

From what I have read in the preceding pages, the book must contain a great deal of factual information to present a true picture of Thompson's thinking and achievements. However, at the same time, I do hope it is readable for the general enthusiast and not just a collection of technical jargon and statistics.
The statistics are mostly in the appendices. There is a short section at the end of each year which deals with the statistics. Other than that - it's factual, report based, and contemporary ones at that.
Nor, for that matter, a hagiography.
The closest it gets to that is in the epilogue.
I note that the subtitle of the book 'A Wartime CME' could be viewed as defensive and possibly loaded. The fact that Thompson was CME during WWII does not excuse any shortcomings he may have had as a designer. After all, the choices he made were his own and not the only ones available to him.
You will find in the course of reading this book that the wartime situation contextualises many of his decisions, and that in fact many of the choices attributed to him have been done so wrongly (and similar treatment to Gresley and Peppercorn has happened through such misunderstandings by other authors.
For the record, I think far too much of the evaluation of Thompson has been based on subjective evaluations of his character and personality, and whether he had a deep-seated dislike of Gresley which was actuated once he had been appointed CME.
Spoiler alert - he had no deep seated dislike of Gresley and this is borne out by the evidence I have presented in the book.

I would suggest, if you haven't a copy already, also getting Tim Hillier-Graves recent book. Whereas I focused on the wartime work, he focused on the build up to it and happily our tomes only overlap insomuch that they both show Thompson has not been presented fairly or well by other authors.
Pyewipe Junction
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by Pyewipe Junction »

'Thanks for buying the book' would have been nice!
S.A.C. Martin
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

Pyewipe Junction wrote: Thu Nov 18, 2021 1:36 pm 'Thanks for buying the book' would have been nice!
Yes indeed, my apologies for the omission. Many thanks! :) And I hope that you enjoy the read. Any questions or corrections, do let me know.
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kimballthurlow
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by kimballthurlow »

Hello,
I purchased my copy of Ëdward Thompson" and look forward to reading it in whole.
The book and 2 others left the Strathwood (publisher) warehouse on 24/11/2021 by DHL Express.
Parcel arrived in my very large letterbox in Australia on Sunday 28/11/2021.
That is quite unbelievable because I regularly wait up to 2 months for other parcels from mainland Europe.

And Simon thanks for the signature at front of book.
The first few pages have been interesting, and I get your emphasis "that the wartime situation contextualises many of his decisions".

Kimball
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by S.A.C. Martin »

kimballthurlow wrote: Mon Nov 29, 2021 9:40 am Hello,
I purchased my copy of Ëdward Thompson" and look forward to reading it in whole.
The book and 2 others left the Strathwood (publisher) warehouse on 24/11/2021 by DHL Express.
Parcel arrived in my very large letterbox in Australia on Sunday 28/11/2021.
That is quite unbelievable because I regularly wait up to 2 months for other parcels from mainland Europe.

And Simon thanks for the signature at front of book.
The first few pages have been interesting, and I get your emphasis "that the wartime situation contextualises many of his decisions".

Kimball
Thank you for buying the book - I think you must be one of the first abroad to receive a copy. You will note that your copy is numbered - there are only 40 books signed.
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kimballthurlow
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Re: Edward Thompson. Good or Bad

Post by kimballthurlow »

Hello Simon
The signed page shows #11/40.

Another was Book of the B17s, an engine that interests me.
The third was RCTS Michael Mensing - railway photographer Vol. 1.

regards
Kimball
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