Posts Tagged ‘Book Covers’

Street Witch Series and Other Progress

Saturday, September 15th, 2018

Yesterday, I hit 76,000 on The Next Paranormal. I’m up to Chapter 29 of 39 in revisions. Basically, the story is done and now it’s polishing, bringing out theme, and going through my Action Items list. I expect some of the remaining chapters to be folded in to others, and, per usual for me, I will write the final chapter at the very last. The fork is not out yet, but I am targeting the end of this month for that.

I have engaged a new-for-me cover artist and committed to three covers in the series. I was really happy with the previous cover design company I was using, but I had such a terrible time with the last cover that I decided it was time to use someone new. Those of you in my “Secret” facebook group went through part of the design process for that cover and are acquainted with some of my issues with the quality of the work that was done. And so, I am seriously upping the ante on covers.

Spinoff Series and Titles

My original plan with The Next Paranormal was that it would be a new lead-in to the My Immortals series, but after thinking about that for a long time, I decided a spinoff series was a wiser, more productive, and less frustrating-for-me idea. The first two Immortals books are simply unlikely to revert to me until 2021 and as I worked on the current book, I became more and more convinced a new series would be easier and more fun for me.

Anyway, I am 99% committed to Street Witch as a series name, and titles related to fire for the first three books. This should be amusing for those of you who recall the fiasco of settling on a title for the first book in the My Immortals series. Members of my reader group (The Jewelies Group of Awesome) have been offering some great ideas for titles. If you’re interested in joining the group, go here, answer a couple of questions and ask to join.

Meanwhile, the 80% sure title for the first book is Fire Bound but that’s not for sure yet because it’s possible the title should have something to do with smoke. Anyway, this is also typical for me. Sometimes I come up with a title from the start (The Spare and Lord Ruin are two examples) and sometimes I don’t have a title until much later. (A Darker Crimson, which was actually my editor’s suggestion, for example.)

Slightly Writing-Related News

My webhost of many many years handled an issue so badly that I ended up moving almost all my sites with them to a new host. All in all, the move went pretty well, and now that things have been on the new host for a while, I’m ready to tell the old host goodbye. There was a period toward the end of August where my site was misconfigured and my email was bouncing.  So, if anyone sent me an email in August and I didn’t reply it’s because I never got your email and worse, there’s no recovery for that.

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New Cover for Scandal

Saturday, July 28th, 2018

Have a look at the New Cover for Scandal

image of the new cover for Scandal - it's a hot Regency couple. The image is a paperback book that looks like it's standing up

New Cover for Scandal

I commissioned a new cover for Scandal because the previous cover, which I love to this day, was getting rejected for promotions because the guy was shirtless. ::sigh:: If you already purchased Scandal and want your copy to have the new cover, you should be able to follow the process for updating books at the vendor of your choice. I took the opportunity to update my booklist, but nothing else changed about the text so the only reason to update is the new cover, and a more recent list of my titles in the back.

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Cover for The Viscount’s First Kiss!

Wednesday, March 14th, 2018

Next month I will be releasing The Viscount’s First Kiss, my novella from the anthology How to Find a Duke in Ten Days. Here’s the cover!

A Regency couple. She has her hand on his chin because he's super hot and she's just realized maybe she loves him, who knew? She didn't. There is a bookshelf behind them. He is totally into her.

Cover of The Viscount’s First Kiss

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Your Opinion Needed!

Friday, November 25th, 2016

I’m pulling together the new cover for My Immortal Assassin. Here are 4 possibilities. Which do you like? There’s a poll at the bottom of this post, but feel free to add other feedback in the comments. Models + backgrounds are not fixed, meaning, any of them could have a blue or orange background. So. What do YOU think?

Version 004

Blue glowy background, youngerish model with some tats, model is slightly to the right of the image.

blue glowy background, shirtless model with some tats

004

Version 005

Orange glowy background, youngerish model, tats, slightly more intense look. Center of image.

glowy orange background, no tat shirtless model

005

Version 006

Orange glowy background, olderish model no tats, hands behind head.

glowy orange background, no tat shirtless model hands behind head

006

Version 007

Orange glowy background, no tats, olderosh model, arms at sides.

glowy orange background, no tat shirtless model

007

Which version do you like best?

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Progress Report, Covers, and Complaints

Friday, June 3rd, 2016

Progress Report!

I’m doing a paper read-through of Surrender to Ruin, which is going about as expected. It’s a little unusual that I’m at 82K words without a final chapter and with all but chapter 1 to read and revise. That’s because, per usual, I have heavily revised chapter 1 three times and then got all the way to chapter three when I realized I needed a whole new chapter before the then current chapter 3, which I then wrote and then I started over and revised chapter 1 twice more and now I’m moving on to chapter 2… Which is more or less how it usually goes with the paper revisions.

At this rate, I’ll end up at well over 100K, but I expect to find chapters that require deletion. I’m almost ready to post a first chapter to read, so look for that!

For those who care, I am currently revising my paper version with a Kaweco Sport fine point fountain pen with “lilac summer” ink. It’s very pretty! The Kaweco Sport fountain pen is a great pen. I enjoy writing revising with it.

Covers

As my blog readers know, I have the final cover for Surrender to Ruin which I love love love. I asked my cover artist to match the look and feel of Lord Ruin, which is why I went with a custom shoot for the image. There was nothing out there that was perfect and I didn’t want to compromise. Then I realized that A Notorious Ruin, which is Book 2 in the series, was going to look very out of place. I didn’t even bother looking for stock images. If there was anything out there that would work, I’d have used it for Surrender to Ruin. And so….

I did A/B testing for the  cover. In the first round, my preferred image (Looking Straight Ahead pose) lost by a statistically significant amount — though not overwhelmingly. So then I A/B tested Sideways Pose with the green background and the purple background, and that was more or less a tie. There was an insignificant edge for purple. On social media, the green vs. purple choice had a slight edge for green.

!

I SO SO appreciate everyone who weighed in. By the way, purple was my favorite. As was the Straight Ahead pose. But I could see why the sideways pose had the edge.

Now what!? Well, I put the three covers up in order across my 27″ monitor screen and swapped between purple and green for Book 2. I asked my sister to look. My preference was for the green, and so was hers and so … the green background it is. It goes better with Books 1 and 3. When it’s final, I’ll post all three so you can see for yourselves.

Complaint Department

Is anyone else having trouble finding books to read at Amazon? I used to be able to browse and find books and authors I wanted to read or try out. And now? It’s awful. Apparently, there are only 5 books they intend to show me, and if I don’t want any of those, too bad. The books they show me aren’t even remotely close to something I think I’d enjoy.

My last 10 book purchases were all at iBooks.

How about you?

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Which Cover Do you Prefer? Poll!

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

I am redoing the cover for A Notorious Ruin because it needs to fit with the style of Book 1 (Lord Ruin) and Book 2 (Surrender to Ruin) and it currently does not. I would LOVE to know which you prefer.

Image quality is not final. Neither is background color.

Which Cover Pose do you Prefer?

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Regency man sitting on a chair a little sideways leaning slightly to one side, looking like he's thinking damn you're hot.

Sideways Pose

 

A Regency Man sitting on a chair looking straight forward like he's thinking you're not naked enough.

Straight on Pose

 

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Shoot!

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

After looking around and not finding the right images for the cover of Surrender To Ruin, I decided to go the custom route, using photographer Jenn LeBlanc. I knew the kind of image I wanted and which model I thought would be perfect. A couple of hours after I contacted her everything was set up with the model I hoped to use.

The photo shoot was today. Here’s three  of my favorites of the during-the-shoot pictures of the pictures of the pictures… These are pictures of the digital camera viewer. I can assure you the photos uploaded are crystal clear. All images by Jenn LeBlanc.

A Regency era gentleman looking very raking indeed. Smokin' hot.

Liking the look! credit: Jenn LeBlanc

 

Regency gentleman leaning against a chaise, looking smokin' hot and rakish

Rake? credit: Jenn LeBlanc

 

Regency era gentleman perched on edge of chaise. Super hot.

Yes. Please. credit: Jenn LeBlanc

 

I’ve narrowed the pictures down to several choices and am mulling them over ….  Covers matter a lot, and I knew I wanted a cover that was both eye-catching and conveyed the character in the book, and I wasn’t finding what I wanted among the stock art.

So many of the images are so good it’s going to be hard to decide. Which is a better place to be than wondering which image I’ll settle for.

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Quiz! How to Tell If You Should Do Your Own Book Cover

Thursday, September 20th, 2012

Lots of authors are diving into the self-publishing waters. Before I say anything else let me say this: Self-Publishing is the best thing to happen to authors since the debut of the word processor.

But that’s no excuse for horrific covers. If you are an author you are unlikely to have the necessary design skills to pull together an effective book cover. I’m not saying it’s impossible. Absolutely there are authors who have the skills. But do you? I’ve put together a handy quiz for you to make a quick check of the likelihood that you can do this on your own:

All questions relate to book covers:

  1. Have you ever made a living doing design or graphics work for the web?
  2. If you were to choose a font for your book, would you
    1. select a font from the list that shows up in your graphics program
    2. Find a font website and choose a serif and a sans-serif font to license
  3. Do you know what kerning is and why you might need to do this?
  4. In the past 10 days, have you looked at a color wheel?
  5. Have you ever read a book about typography or read five or more articles about typography by people who do typography for a living?
  6. Are there 3 or more cover artists whose work you instantly recognize?

How to Score

If you answered yes to Question 1 give yourself 15 points
If you answered yes to 2A deduct 50 points.
If you answered yes to 2B give yourself 1 point
Give yourself 1 point for every yes for questions 3-6.

I’ll wait while you do the arithmetic….

Points Scored

20 or more: You can probably do your own cover.
6-19: you MIGHT be able to do your own cover.
5: Not yet.
4: Unlikely.
3: No.
2: I’m sorry, no.
1: Please don’t.
Any negative number: hell no.

You’re welcome!

 

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Cover for the Uncensored Future Tense . . .

Monday, October 10th, 2011

What do you think?

Cover for Future Tense (The Uncensored Version)

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Hunky Model with Mystery Tat

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

OK, so I’m using the photo below (have purchased all rights) to use for/in the cover of “Future Tense: The uncensored version.” If possible, I’d like to know what his tat says. It’s not Chinese, but maybe’s it’s Thai? or something? I think it’s cool but I might have to have it photoshopped out. Does anyone know what it might say or represent? I would be grateful to know. I’m just so thrilled to have found an ethnic model because I tell you, I spent a LONG time looking for an image like this. I’ve shrunk down the photo considerably, but it’s still large enough to see.

P.S. Sorry to all the people I stupidly told I thought it was Chinese. I was going off memory and once I looked at it, yeah, obviously that’s totally not Chinese.

Book Cover Hunk With Mystery Tat

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