My original book cover.
Two weeks ago, I announced that I was redoing the book cover for the first book in my series because it did not “spark joy.” (Thank you, Marie Kondo!)
Well, my new designer, who will still remain nameless (until we have the final cover completed), has given me a first draft, if you will, and I’m already in love.
Before she began any work, she asked me a bunch of questions about what I’m looking for, including:
- Author name/co-author (if any)
- Blurb/summary/back cover copy
- Release date
- Links to covers I like
- Things I know I don’t like
- Is the book part of a series?
Because we were changing up an existing cover, my designer wanted more information about what I didn’t like. So I sent her this: Continue reading
I’m writing this post on Thursday evening, which I just found out is “National Periodic Table” day. That certainly explains some of the posts I saw on FB today from my science-y friends. It’s also apparently “Fettuccine Alfredo Day”, which I would have been far more likely to celebrate, had I only known sooner.
It’s too late now, so I guess I’ll have to set my sights on tomorrow which, among other things, is “Fly a Kite” day (cue the Mary Poppins soundtrack). Luckily I’ve got a brand new kite in the garage just waiting to be taken for a soar and the wind is rattling the trees as we speak.
That certainly sounds like more fun than going to work, doesn’t it?
Unfortunately, go to work I must, so my kite flying might have to wait until the weekend, especially if the rain in the forecast materializes. I have plenty of other things to do tomorrow including getting some words on the page before I crack open the latest book from my TBR pile.
I think I’ll start things off by giving today’s random words a shot.
Care to join me? Continue reading
I’ve spent quite a bit of time this week judging contest entries.
We’re talking genre fiction, not literary works. I’ve been judging as a reader. Clean, smooth prose is good, but it should be a delivery vehicle for strong storytelling.
Many of the pages I’ve read have been thrilling. The heroine has a strong, active role – she’s a bodyguard, or a firefighter, or sniper, or a PI, or whatever. The world-building has on the whole been convincing and the writing sound.
So it pains me to say I would not have bought any of the stories I read, nor even bothered to read on if the author had given them to me gratis.
The problem, I think, was that not one of these strong, active heroines had a goal. They had expertise, they were parachuted into action-packed scenes, and they responded as they had been trained to do. They saved themselves, children, cute puppies and even hunky heroes. Things happened to them, and they reacted. Boom! Pow! Continue reading
Recently, Nancy debuted her cover for the first novel-length book in her series, and Kay posted about the redesign she recently did for a previously published book. I find myself in slightly different territory…I don’t have a book published (although it’s coming later this year), yet I’m already redesigning the cover. Why, you may ask?
Marie Kondo. That’s why.
My cover does not “spark joy.” Don’t get me wrong…it’s a pretty good cover. But as time goes by, and the more I look at other covers in my genre, the more I think Continue reading
“The more we stur a tourde, the wours it will stynke.” So said J. Heywood in the 1546 Dialogue Prouerbes Eng. Tongue. How true is that? I have muddied around with the first several chapters of my book for MONTHS now, but as the Golden Heart deadline approached on Friday, I found myself having to follow the equally proverbial “fish or cut bait.”
In other words, I had to make whatever changes I could get done before the deadline, then send it off on its merry way. (I have few hopes of finaling, but I thought because it’s the last time RWA will hold the Golden Heart–the “Academy Awards” of romance writing for unpublished authors–I should give it a go.)
When I finished my submission, and in conjunction with my Word Of The Year (which is DEADLINES), I told my husband that I was not going to touch those first five chapters again. And he made me sign THIS:
So it’s moving forward, starting with Chapter 6 and going until it’s done and I turn it in to my editor.
Do you put a stake in the ground when it comes to your MS? Do you only allow a certain number of revisions to a given chapter?
I am in the throes of editing my first novel. I’ve never done this before. I’ve written a first draft…numerous times. But I have never gone back through and cleaned it up to make it spit-shined, polished, and ready for the world.
My thoughts on the process? Editing sucks.
I finished my draft, read through the whole thing from beginning to end, and focused on the high-level changes that thought I needed to make. And about ¼ of the way into my first chapter, I was so overwhelmed by my perceived flaws that I didn’t think they were surmountable. I was ready to toss the whole story and start over. At a minimum, I wanted to play the avoidance game, doing such things as scrubbing tile grout or watching repeat episodes of The Queen while eating lots of chocolate.
It was bad. Continue reading
A few weeks ago, Jeanne blogged about chunky writers, or writers who need large chunks of time in order to be productive. I completely identified with this…it takes me a little while to get into my story world, and if I’m on a tear, I want to stay there.
However, as some of you know, I have a family…kids, a dog (who unfortunately does not use a litter box and so needs to go out), and a husband who travels a lot. I’m also the point person on just about anything to do with repairs, errands, etc. And, because most businesses are open during the day, that’s when I have to take care of those things, usually at the expense of my writing.
But it didn’t used to be like this. When my kids were younger (and I needed to parent them all day), I would work at night, usually starting after they went to bed. I would work until midnight or later, then come to bed and try to make it through the next day with IVs of caffeine. Not only was I a migraine-wielding zombie, Continue reading