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Viral TikTok helps Cwmbran author become Amazon ‘best seller’

Gemma Seabourne holds a copy of her debut book
Gemma Seabourne holds a copy of her debut book

The debut book from a Cwmbran author became the ‘best seller’ in its category on Amazon after she shared a TikTok video that went viral.

Gemma Seabourne, from Fairwater, published her book, Prince of the Ancients, online in September 2022. In April she created a video to promote it and it’s already hit 325,000 views. Two days later readers from around the world had posted hundreds of comments on her video. She was “gobsmacked” to see Amazon had labelled it as a ‘best seller’ following the surge in sales of the book.

a screengrab of a book on Amazon
The alert from Amazon showing the surge in sales had made her book number 1 ‘best seller’ in mythology

Buy Gemma’s book

It’s available on Kindle for £3.99 or paperback for £13.50.

“I used to write a lot in university, but then it fell off. Then it was Covid and in the first lockdown I was stuck at home with my two daughters, a three-month-old, and a two-year-old,” she said.

“I lost my job as childcare was shut. My mental health was poor. I’m a creative person and I needed to do something with this energy. This scene started playing in my head so I wrote it down and then another one and another one. A huge world was created in my head.

“I looked at self-publishing and spoke to some authors. The book was published in September 2022. I’ve got quite a good following on TikTok and Instagram. Then I had a video go viral and it shot to number one.

“It’s a jokey video and took me five minutes to make.”

the front cover of a book called Prince of the Ancients
Gemma Seabourne writes as GL Preston as a tribute to her grandad who is still alive but she has fond memories of the stories he told her as a child

The book is a mix of epic fantasy, folklore and mythology. Book number two is underway and she hopes to publish it later this year.

Her pen name, GL Preston, is a tribute to her grandad who is alive and used to tell her made-up stories when she was a child. She kept her writing a secret but shared it with her mum and husband.

“I gave it to my mum to read. She likes reading as much as me. She said ‘it’s really good’. My husband is not a big reader but said ‘you’ve got to put it out into the word’. That was the determining factor for me.”

She said writing helps her enjoy “escapism” and hopes her readers do the same through her stories.

“Writing is chaotic with kids at home. I’ve got ADHD so can’t organise. I thrive in chaos. I have bursts of energy and can write 1000s of words at a time then sometimes a lull. I can’t write start to finish. I just write with what feels comfortable at the time.”

Watch her Tiktok that went viral

@authorglpreston

🫣#romantasy #fantasyromancebooks #epicfantasyromance #indiefantasybooks #fantasybooks #dragonshifter #fantasyseriesrec #romantasybooks #darkfantasy

♬ Cupid – Twin Ver. (FIFTY FIFTY) – Sped Up Version – sped up 8282

Follow Gemma online

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Viral TikTok helps Cwmbran author become Amazon ‘best seller’