Book Covers

Youtube Virgin No More

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I’m edging back into weekly blogging again and I’m planning on weekly posts rather than daily posts, so here we go with the sticking of the toe into the water to begin with. It has been a very busy six months. After the previous three years of insanity it has been good to finally be able to just get on with working on what I love, breathe a little, and figure out what my new life will be. What I finally figured out is that you never know. Which is not necessarily a bad thing. This year has been filled with all sorts of fabulous projects from editing jobs to illustration and a couple of cover designs. I’ve had to move the publication date for my new non-fiction book, The Secret Life of People further towards the middle of September as work for my clients is always a priority, but the second week in September so far is looking like the time of its arrival into the world. I’m really looking forward to that.

I’ve also managed to load my first Youtube video. I have a few more in the works and will definitely be loading one per week covering my writing life and all things self-publishing. The video editing is a steep learning curve so hopefully my future videos will be a lot more tightly knitted—and with a whole lot less umming. I’m sure that at some point I’m going to get an um or two in the comments. If you want to know how to format a full bleed book for print on demand please check it out on Youtube. If you fancy more writerly videos then please do subscribe—I’ll try to hold back on the umming in future.

Watch this space for the introduction of the third book in the Myrtle the Purple Turtle series by Cynthia Reyes and Lauren Reyes-Grange, where Myrtle meets a gorgeous new friend, and by the way—zoom up to the top of this page if you’re looking for a new book cover design – there’s a sale happening up there.

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New Things

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Busy Birds
Busy Birdies

After this past year of epic chaos interestingness, I am happy to say that  I have learned a lot, and strangely, even the really unpleasant lessons are now showing me their value – retrospect is a fine thing indeed. Now, tempered to the strength of old boots, while hopefully not looking too much like one of them, I am happy to say that there is quite a lot of fabulousness to come over the next few weeks. Beginning with the epic launch in the next weeks of the beginning of her public life, Cynthia Reyes’ amazing Myrtle the Purple Turtle, closely followed by some unadulterated genius of science-fiction by the one and only Joelle LeGendre there is a lot coming up – all happy and wonderful beginnings from some very talented people.

I’ve made sure this time, that failing the actual end of the world (wasn’t that supposed to be today by the way? – ah well – maybe later – the day is still young) no internet or other problems will be tolerated. Calmness rules now….mostly…..ahem.

Zen Birdie
Zen Birdie

I haven’t been twiddling my thumbs while being mostly in internet darkness. I have found ways, which include zooming around the bush, swearing in ways that only writers can, in my car holding my laptop out of the window looking for signal, to ensure that the important things don’t get lost or undone because of internet devils ever again. I’ve mainly concentrated on work, such as illustrating, editing, proofing and so on over the past months, relegating my social media activity to the last place in the line – obviously focusing on making sure that I don’t let any of my authors down with the surreal things that have happened to try and knobble me – that red guy with the tail and fork kind of overplayed his hand though – it’s impossible for those kinds of problems to win when you’re looking at them and giggling hysterically – hah!

First up. Look out for Myrtle’s introduction here in the next day or two, where I will share the story of how she came to be, and the amazing woman who created her, together with her wonderful and inspiring family, and the honour and pleasure of being allowed to bring that gorgeous little turtle to life with illustration. I will tell all in Myrtle and Cynthia’s own post though – I’m just saying Hi Again to all of you lovely bloggers with this one. Hiiii there guys!!!

Myrtle the Purple Turtle

 

Covers Special

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After my recent AWOL, this is my most epic catch up ever. I’m catching up on all your blogs and comments now. With one thing and another these past couple of weeks, I completely forgot that I put all my covers on special for the month of May at a flat charge of US $20, INCLUDING for made to order by author brief covers, because I want to get this project off to a proper start. I think I only announced it on Twitter before I “went fishing”. So I’m going to extend it for the month of June too. If you fancy a bespoke cover for twenty bucks head over to the Contact Me page up there.
Before my fishing trip I also made brand new covers with my own designs for my two short stories, The Visitation and Fly Birdie, because you can’t very well be selling book covers with rotten ones on your own books. Ha! I’ll share the Fly Birdie one here – about time my favourite of my own scribbles got its proper face. The idea behind it is looking out from the inside of a magical tree at birds flying free. My shorts will be free when I launch my non-fiction book in a couple of weeks, for those of you who fancy them and haven’t read them yet. Epic catch up – onward and forward!

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Busy Bunny

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It’s been raining every day here, at the same time as being roasting hot – with lots of really weird lightning keeping me away from electrical bits mostly. Scary climate change. I’ve been flat out busy though, so now I’m going to take a rest by visiting my lovely bloggerverse for a bit. I’ve been re-polishing my published books – going through them very slowly to make sure all is well inside and out, with a bit of tweaking all around. I’m also making the paper books smaller and changing the white for cream paper – they look much better that way. I’m banging away at the books to be published this year, and also getting cracking on the illustrations for my first children’s book. I’ve done piles of pencil sketches so far, but just today started the colouring process on one of them. It’s a bit blurry, and not nearly finished – I’m still going to do quite a bit of digital fiddling with it to tidy it up but this is it so far. I’m way too excited at the whole thing to keep it to myself till it’s finished.

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I’ve never written anything for children before, so I’m finding it a little scary to be honest. Kids aren’t stupid and they don’t like to be preached to, and this little book is about properly taking care of your pets, so getting into little heads without offending little people is somewhat of a large learning curve. In between trying to be a tomato whisperer – I think I transplanted my heirlooms and chillies a little late, so they’re growing sloooooow, I’ve made a new dream catcher cover and loaded it up on the page, and I’m also getting sketches and pics together for my (or rather African Me’s Princess Sithole’s) Africolonial tongue in cheek recipe book. See. Busy, busy bunny me. Now I’m off to lounge around in blog land.

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PS – Pre-made Book Covers

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I’ve started loading book covers for sale on my new Pre-made Book Covers tab at the top there. I must admit that it’s quite nerve wracking, but never mind, I love making them so it’s very unlikely that I’ll stop now.

All of them are made with my own photos or sketches so far. I might use stock or public domain pictures in the future, but only ever for very small elements or manipulated to totally individual works. I’ve resized them for web use, so I’m wondering about the visual quality as they are, so I’ll tack on a very high resolution image here just in case anyone thinks the web size is a bad idea. Hopefully easy to see. I’m working on a haunted house cover at the moment – love it – but only in between the scribbling and editing. I’d really love it if anyone has any ideas for covers to make. I don’t want them to be too generic, and I don’t have tons of ideas myself.

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