new year, new look

One of my goals this year is to get back on track with writing my original fiction.  First up was a new cover for The Art Kids:

artkidscover
Old Cover
The Art Kids cover 2017 update.jpg
New Cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Isn’t it pretty??  Of course this is for the Kindle edition only, because creating a cover for the paperback is a lot more involved, but I’m going to get to that this year.  The new Kindle edition is available on Amazon for $2.99 right now (although there might be a sale coming up *wink*wink*).

I created my new cover on Canva, which is so easy to use.  Another new cover I’ve been working on is for The Thing About the Truth / The Thing About Zombies / My Zombie Girlfriend.  (As you can see, I’ve been having some trouble with the title as well.)  This novel was a Nanowrimo challenge and I had it posted over on figment.com for years.  Recently I decided to give a try over on Wattpad, since it seems like Wattpad is more heavily used and people are actually getting their work published there.  Anyway, I’ve been struggling to determine the audience for this book, and you can see the progression through the cover and title changes:

thethingaboutthetruthcoverkate-spoffordthe-thing-about-zombies-wattpad-1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The original cover & title: The Nanowrimo challenge was based off the cover of Lauren Barnholdt’s “The Thing About the Truth” so I used that as the base but “zombified” it

Second cover & title: Trying to keep the spirit of the original title, but making a simple bold statement with the cover art.  I had also categorized this story as horror, which despite the zombies, it isn’t…

Current cover & title: Since this story is more of a horror comedy, I felt this title was a better fit.  I also returned to an image similar to the original cover.  I’d love to introduce the cracked surface of cover 2, but Canva has its limits…

So, two new covers!  Up next: redesigns for the Wolf Point series covers, and a cover for the second Wolf Point prequel novella, The Madman, which is nearly completion!  I’m looking at a release date for the end of this month, so stay tuned!

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Scavengers cover reveal!

Scavengers finally has a cover!

scavengers ebook cover 6 copy

This took me a long time… mostly due to issues getting permission to use images.  For both Hitchhikers and Dreamwalkers, I was able to find images over at sxc.hu and Flickr, and the photographers got back to me fairly quickly.  Both of the images I used for this cover were from Morguefile, which is a great site to find images because the site encourages people to “remix” the original photographs.  Still, because this is a commercial project, I needed to get permission to use them, and I was thrilled when the photographers responded right away.  You can find out a little more about the original images with links on the Scavengers page.

Of course, Scavengers still is not completely written… I’ve pushed back the pub date twice and I’m still writing… so the current pub date of January 31st is probably not going to happen, even though I’ve been working on it a lot this week.

Part of the issue in writing this third book is that I now have to coordinate timelines with two other books, and start planning for more books in the series.  Zeke’s story will not be the last Wolf Point novel.  I’d like to have a book featuring Remy’s point of view, and Misty’s.  There are also the prequels I want to write, following up to The Beast.  If I can ever finish Scavengers I think I’ll do the Camp Nanowrimo for the two novellas I am planning in that prequel trilogy.

But Scavengers has a cover!

Hitchhikers cover reveal!

It has taken some time – had to get permissions for the artwork, and tweak the font so that it’s readable as a teeny-tiny thumbnail – but finally I have a cover for Hitchhikers!!!

Hitchhikers ebook cover 4

 

I like a lot, although I did prefer my initial design which used a different model and more of a sunset-y background (which gave the cover a more ominous feel)… but technically this person looks more like my main character, so I’m happy with it.  Photoshop is fun 🙂

So, cover aside, I’m hoping to get this novel out for public consumption by mid-May.  Gotta have Janina do a read of the final draft, maybe get a little closer to finishing the sequel…

cover design and all its complications

This self-publishing idea has really taken root in my brain and will not let go.  Perhaps it is because I feel like I have exhausted all possibilities in my quest to find an agent/publisher, or perhaps because I am seeing more and more self-published authors making it, or perhaps because I am tired of seeing all my lovely babies sitting on a shelf and want them to go out in the world and live, or perhaps because I like controlling all aspects of how my novel looks… as in COVERS!

I have been hard at work designing new covers for my Wolf Point series (yes, yes, I know I am only halfway through writing book 2 and have only a vague premise in my head for book 3).  With some Photoshop and some images from stock.xchng I have finally arrived at 3 covers that I am pleased with.  Now there’s just the business of getting permissions to use these images.  Can’t really post the covers yet since I’ve only heard back from the creator of one image, and each cover has two images involved.  I’m also not sure I need to get permissions for the font I’m using…  I also haven’t created back covers for any of the books-that’s if I decide to offer both paperback and ebook editions-since in order to make the full cover, I need to have both a finished book (so I can determine the spine width) and the blurb for the back of the book (which also helps if the book is finished…).

And I have been working on Dreamwalkers.  Up over 32,000 words now – yay!

As soon as I have all the proper permissions, I will be posting up the new covers, so stay tuned…

writing is hard.

There are so many distractions… so many things to see on the interwebs… I am watching Janina type away and maybe she’s thinks I’m writing too, but I’m not working on my novel like I should be…

Today I read this article about authors who self-publish ebooks and are actually able to make a living at it.  And I’m really starting to think I should throw some of my completed novels into the ebook arena.  Specifically, the Hitchhikers series.  Yeah, you know, the second book of which I am not writing right now?

So this article has inspired me to really think about doing the whole ebook thing.  A traditional publisher would be wonderful, but as you can see from my rejection counter –> I have sort of run the gamut of agents and a handful of publishers who are not interested.  And yet this same novel, in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel contest two years ago made it nearly to the end.

The article should have inspired me to actually write more, but instead I was more inspired to create series covers.  You know, covers that actually relate to each other and would sell an ebook.  I will share those once I’ve finished all three.  Three you say?  Yes – the fully written Hitchhikers, the half-finished Dreamwalkers, and the twinkle in my eye Scavengers, which will be told from Zeke’s point of view.  Maybe there will be more at that point, who knows?  I’m also calling the series Wolf Point.  I’ve been getting a lot of good ideas and tips on The Book Designer‘s blog, which hosts a monthly ebook cover design award.

Maybe if I can manage to keep up this level of inspire-ment for more than tonight, this whole ebook thing might actually come to pass…

the countdown begins

So I’m already thinking about November and Nanowrimo… already stressing about when I’ll have enough time to write!  My first week in November is pretty much booked up and that makes me nervous because it’s usually in the first week that I get the momentum to carry me through the rest of the month.  I also have my complete failure at Camp Nanowrimo lurking on my shoulder.

Of course, I have already created a cover:

I have a vague idea of the story I want to write.  I usually find that I start a totally different story on November 1st.  This story is the second idea I’ve had for Nanowrimo.  The first was going to be an exorcism/possession horror story.  Maybe someday I’ll still write that…  I find that if I overly outline or plan a story I can’t actually sit down and write it.  I just need to have a vague sense of what I want the ending to be and then sit down and figure out how to get there as I write.

Luckily, most of the things that will be taking up valuable writing time early on in November are circus-related… I’m going to see Cirque du Soleil’s Saltimbanco, and then I have my own trapeze show (in which I’ll be dressed as a flying turkey) to worry about.  I can only hope that Black Friday will be a day I can catch up with my word count…

In other news, I got an account on Figment.com, so if you want to start reading some of my awesomely bad Mistaken Identity series that I wrote in high school, here’s the link!

Dreamwalkers cover fun

The Camp Nanowrimo novel pages are now allowing covers, so of course I had to make one for Dreamwalkers.  Here’s my first attempt:

This looks a little…. 50 Shades of Grey?  I suppose I could tint it a different color.  I liked the idea of the rumpled blanket looking like a landscape and you don’t realize it’s a bed until you look at the top.

My second attempt is a little better, although it falls into the category of girls in fancy dresses who look like they’re dead:

I think the title indicates that the girl is not in fact dead but sleeping… Maybe this orientation is better?  Less dead-looking?

Ideally, I’d love an action shot of a model who looks like Kayla – lighter colored hair.  Some kind of forest where she’s nearly hidden, crouched and ready to pounce.  But I couldn’t find any stock photos like that 😦