Tag Archive for book

What’s in a Cover?

Coding Peter Suddenly Paris 2 Covers

The design of the cover can make the book… or so I was told. Certainly, bad covers don’t contribute to sales. But good covers are difficult. And the thought on cover design has changed over the years… just like fashion. Since I tend to design my own covers (and I’m an artist and a designer), I wanted to put together some ideas, if not rules, to follow and some background of how to think about book cover design. Because if you don’t do your own, you still need to communicate what you want with the person that does. Book Covers Through Time To appreciate a cover, it helps to understand its roots. I won’t go back far, since my genre is science fiction, just a hundred years or so. Consider the cover evolution of Jules Verne’s “Journey to the Center of the Earth”: There is a movement from frills to realism to a strong graphic look of the more modern editions. While for the 1800’s editions, we might find it difficult to identify the genre of this story, by the time we hit 1960s, there is no doubt that this is a science fiction or fantasy novel. The cover alerts…

Accidental Horror Story

In the name of the People

About a year and a half ago, I wrote a short story. The idea came to me upon seeing some blog post on how “I Love Lucy” and “Honeymooners” and “M.A.S.H.” are just some of the first shows aliens on a distant planet will watch as part of first contact with Earth. What would those people think of us? Will the humor, dark or slapstick, be lost on them? Would they see us as “good people”? First impressions matter… So I envisioned a world full of pacifists who devise a scheme to protect their planet from hostile aliens by creating content designed especially to scare off visitors from other worlds. It turned out to be a fun short story and I submitted it to one of my favorite publishers: Mariah Axiz of 600 Second Saga. Mariah is a connoisseur of the strange and wonderful; she had published several of my stories in the past; I love her work… I hit submit and waited…and waited. A few days later I got an email back: “This is NOT my kind of story. I don’t do horror…” Horror? What? I don’t write horror stories…well, I did write “The FATOFF Conspiracy”…and “Pigeon” has aspects…

Science Fiction Summer

2017-07-21 SciFi BookFunnel Promotion header

Have you gotten your summer readings yet? Well, here’s a large collection of science fiction from indie authors from all over the world. Pick one, pick them all — they are all free for a limited time. And if you like a book, please make sure to leave a review — indie authors live and die but your good words. Thank you and happy reading! Grab as many books as you like and tell a friend!

What’s in the Cover Art?

Coding Peter Suddenly Paris 2 Covers

This month we have released a sequel to Suddenly, Paris — Coding Peter — AND changed the covers of both books! Above is photo of before and after for the cover art of both books. Can a cover make a difference in the sales of these books? These products? Yes! Cover art makes a huge impact on how a book is perceived by its audience. Or to put it even stronger, the art on the cover of the book helps the potential reader recognize the book as something that they would like to read. Personally, I thought the original covers with strong black, red, and white design were striking. But that design didn’t communicate the genre of the books to its audience. We needed to come up with illustrations that made it clear that these stories were science fiction, and action adventure, and aimed at a new adult readers. We needed to covey a sense of mystery and danger. We wanted people to stop and notice the books based on their covers. And so we made it change. The new covers are a lot more narrative. And hopefully it would make a difference as the potential readers browse pages of…

My First Three Science Fiction Books

First three books

I wanted to be a scientist and go into space. I got my B.A. from Columbia University in Mathematics and Astrophysics and I worked at NASA on the Pioneer Venus Project as a programmer. I received my masters from U.C. Berkeley in Education of Math, Science, and Technology and went on to earn my doctorate in education. Together with my husband and business partner, I conceive, design, and create products, ideas, websites, and exhibits. Along the way, I’ve learned how to write. I’m also a binge reader — I find an author I like and I read everything they’ve ever written! I love science fiction. I have consumed voraciously thousands of books (some are neatly shelved in alphabetical order and some lie completely disorganized in piles on the stairs — my children now read science fiction too and it’s more difficult to keep things in place). I wrote my first story when I was about eight — I got hooked on a book series about an orphan boy who traveled the world with his uncle collecting animals for zoos. Unfortunately, only the first three books were translated into Russian. So I wrote what happened next (I didn’t have a choice,…