Thanks once again to South Carolina Writers’ Workshop for having me as a guest. I saw my cover for the first time on June 14th. Weeeellll, not really. Hill Country Holdup has a TERRIFIC, MOST EXCELLENT cover, and yes, I saw it posted on Amazon.com for the first time on Monday, June 14th. But it wasn’t the first time I’d “seen” or developed a cover for See Jane Run (working title).
Many moons ago when I began attending local chapter meetings on writing, a speaker asked this question and I hope you’ll do the same: Close your eyes and picture your book. Where is it? What does it look like? Do you have that picture? NOW–Did you picture the book as a hardcover or paperback? Who are the authors you saw next to you on the bookshelf.
Did you have that image? Did you create a cover? Or did you leave those unbound pages wrapped in a rubber-band and stuck high on a closet shelf? Have you gone to the bookstore to see exactly WHERE your book will be when you sell?
Why do writers write? We want to tell stories. Lots of us are great storytellers, but we WRITE those stories as books. And in the publishing industry you can’t tell a story unless someone READS it. I wanted my family and friends to take me seriously. I wanted to prove that I could tell a story in an interesting way. So years ago, I printed my manuscripts, three-hole punched them, and bought a binder with a see-through plastic sleeve. I included: dedications, published by, a back cover blurb, a peak at the next book. AND I designed book covers.
Each of my books had a place on my shelf. Copies of my books were loaned to friends and their friends. I went to the book store and pointed to my daughter, “That’s where my book will be.” And more importantly, I got to know several bookstore managers. I went to signings and watched. I learned. But most importantly, I ALWAYS knew what my book looked like.
My question for you: Tell me and be honest. Before reading this article, HOW did you picture your book?
This week’s lesson learned: Visualization, positive thinking, meditation, prayer, whichever path you choose…YOU have to believe in yourself. *I* have to believe in myself before others can have confidence in me too.
‘Til next time,
Some upcoming topics of discussion:
-An On-Going Behind the Scene Look at Getting Ready for Publication
(promotion, character sheets, log-lines, bios, etc.)
– My Hero Has Brown Hair?
– Targeting Your Book & Choosing Your Market