The London Book Fair approaches and there is much to do. However, immersed in it all, I can't help but look back at Hookline's first appearance at the London Book Fair four years ago. The China Bird by Bryony Doran was our first winner - we had no other publication - so our entire stand was stacked only with Bryony's book. We looked pretty foolish among the more seasoned publishers with their shelves of new titles and a healthy backlist. Many of them asked why we only had one title and, when I explained the process to publication using book group readers, most of them rolled their eyes. A hobbyist, I felt them say, she'll never last. Since then, I've seen many of those other publishers again. They smile when they see me now. Happy, I think, to see Hookline is growing. And I believe I've lost the 'hobbyist' tag and had it replaced with 'maverick' - which is a title I like. It was a scary step to start the Hookline Novel Competition. I didn't know how many submissions we would get, whether we could round up enough book groups or whether the novel that rose to the top would be any good. We have seven great titles behind us, and I think we've proven the process works. Now there is only one way to go - and that's forward!