Covers, Titles, Names and Blurbs


Covers, Titles, Names, and Blurbs

Packaging Everything Together

The writing process is known to those knowing it well.

Except…some of us don’t know…not a smidgen.

No matter what coaching we get, as some point we must undertake our journey.  I discovered creating novels not unlike scaling Grand Mesa near Grand Junction, Colorado, except another mesa always awaits, obscured by clouds.  And I’ve ascended rock faces beyond counting – concept, outlines, first drafts, revisions beyond number, and edits without end.

Today, I find myself sitting atop rocks on a fog shrouded plateau, pondering ways to entice readers into opening my story and discovering my genius.

And chewing a Luna bar, gathering strength, I paused and And, considered changes to the shopping experience.  Once upon a time, unless books lay face up, potential buyers regarded a book-covered shelf, hand on hip, tapping fingers with finger tips, gazing at endless titles and writer names.  If they slid a book out to blow dust off, and glanced over cover art, they might open to read our blurb on the inside.

Today?  On Amazon, if harried and distracted shoppers scroll down to our pride and joy (getting on the first page is advanced witchcraft) art appears immediately, with blurbs perched just below.

So, I haunted cover-design sites, trolled Amazon, visited the library, then opened my rudimentary PhotoShop knockoff…and gained appreciation for things that afflict designers.  And, as this cover came together I dimly sensed elements in play…title, squib, picture, name, background, font sizes and colors, and background.  All conspired to dash my illusions of grasping this arcane skill quickly.  For, if underlying concepts and principles support story structure, so too covers…but I am ignorant of them.  Beyond doubt, I must seek professional help.

And, a glutton for punishment, I further humiliated myself with considering a back cover.  Alas, even twelve-point type would not let me squeeze my blurb onto the page.  My absolutely slimmest version had to shed another 80 pounds…err words, plunging to 150 words before just fitting…with care to neither take deep breaths or bend…let alone try for a chair.

Still, in blissful ignorance, I hope to have doing something passable, and pray something compels readers to look inside.

But, as grandmother always quoted, “Pride goeth before the fall.”  And, I’ve tripped enough to earn a new pen-name…Fiona Flatnose.


Happy writing.












2 thoughts on “Covers, Titles, Names and Blurbs

    • Color me conflicted.

      I’d love to know if an agent or publisher would pick it up, which would be a big ego boost, but I remember that Stephen King had so many rejections for Carrie he could have insulated his attic. While I think it’s pretty much as far as I can carry it without sending it through the Scrib crit process, or use someone like Miranda Honfleur edit it, I think I will let it cool for a bit, then reread it. In my heart of hearts I think it’s too thin…but it’s already too big for a debut novel (131K).

      On the other hand, I’m tempted to try self-publishing. But I get glanced through a link ( Tommy posted on a self-publish process put out by Mark Dawson, but it costs about $500. Still, it showed me I’ve no clue how to go about doing it myself.

      So…what if I waited until I had a body of work…say three novels, or a mix of novels and novelettes, so I would have volume…if that makes any sense? On the other hand, I could wind up a no-hit wonder, like the vast majority of us.

      I wish I knew what to do. 😦

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