In my last article, I mentioned that I've begun to dabble in self-publishing, and I went over a few of the really great resources that are out there. When I first began to investigate self-publishing, it didn't look good "out there", but as I grew more knowledgeable and confident in my choices, I realized that this is definitely the right course for authors who have something to give the world but can't find the proper platform.
Most mainline publishers, e-book publishers, and mass market paperback publishers must believe that your book can sell thousands of books (if not millions) to make that book worth publishing. They gear their selections to what they believe sells well. They cannot afford to take every book submitted to them and run with it, so they look for authors with a great "voice", excellent narrative and characterization skills, and finely honed writing skills. So don't feel terribly bad if you just got a reject letter from St. Martin's or Harlequin. Your book just didn't "fit". It doesn't mean it isn't good enough to be published. It just means that the publisher didn't love it enough to want to invest big bucks to edit, create a cover, promote, and market your book.
And that is exactly why so many authors are turning to self-publishing. The up front costs are minimal.
A couple of years back, an extremely high number of self-published books for sale on the large retail bookstores were sadly lacking in professionalism and quality, but boy, has that ever changed! With the resources now available to those who wish to publish their own books, we are no longer at the mercy of sorta-publishers who prey on newbie authors. Oh, they haven't gone away, but fewer talented newbies are falling into their clutches.
Today, I'm going to show would-be authors some of the excellent resources available to them to help create and promote their books. I will go over a different resource each week through May.
Covers, graphic arts, and promo resources are what get your books noticed.
I love to create my own covers from royalty free photo stock shots, but I hate to spend hours and hours going through all the available sites, just to buy a couple dozen good ones (when I can find them at a price I can afford). After I find the photos that I think might fit, I create the title and the credits with Photoshop. But sometimes the photos I can find don't fit the book, and I need someone with a larger gallery and better resources, so I use my go-go-girl.
I mentioned in my last article that there are numerous royalty-free photo sites on the web, and that you can purchase many cover-ready photos at reasonable rates. If you are the proud possessor of a great photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop, you can do a credible cover for your book.
Today I am writing about one of my favorite graphic arts resources...the woman I have referred to over the past five years as "the Cover Goddess"...
Syneca Featherstone of ORIGINAL SYN.
But when I absolutely need something professional and perfect, I run to the Cover Goddess and ask her to help me out. And I never regret it. Her prices are low, and her work is impeccable.
I am attaching a slideshow of a number of covers that Syneca has created for my books and for others. A picture is often worth way more than the proverbial thousand words.
I have created cover trailers for my books just by using the delicious covers she has created, and adding text. Using royalty free music. You can check them out on my YouTube Channel.
She also helped me to design my new website, using a free resource that gives me a more professional looking website than my prior site. I decided that I had to share my cover goddess with the rest of the world, because your self-published book deserves the very best.