A new cover look, The Queen of England: Coronation.

While part of me will always love my first cover, I’ve been thinking for awhile that it was time to try something new.  With 28 mostly great reviews on the book so far, I’ve been wondering…okay, not specifically wondering, but altogether denying why the book might not be living up to its potential.  So, as painful as it was, I went about trying to find a new cover artist, and was very fortunate to have landed myself in the situation I’m in (more details on that at a later time).

While this is certainly a departure for me (I’ve always shied away from this style of ‘commercial’ fiction), I really want to do whatever is necessary to increase the chance of connecting with my audience.  I believe in the Queen, and want to set up the trilogy for continued success.  Furthermore, we’re having fun designing the remaining covers in the series, which will feel very much in this tone.  I hope to share some potential versions soon!

As I’ve already committed to a book sale (an ad will go wide this Thursday), I’ll be posting the new cover on Amazon next week.

Thoughts and feedback are always welcome.

Life After Joe: Playlist.

I decided Liz (Life After Joe) deserved a soundtrack for her many hours in the car. #betterlatethannever  In case you’re interested, I also did one for The Queen of England: Coronation.

  • Hamilton Soundtrack
  • Hamilton Mixtape
  • Good Feeling, Violent Femmes
  • Thinking Out Loud, Ed Sheeran
  • Bad Habit, Offspring
  • Back to Black, Amy Winehouse
  • Drinking in LA, Bran Van 3000
  • Save the Last Dance for Me, Michael Buble
  • Mess, Ben Folds
  • Come Away With Me, Norah Jones
  • Tonight the Heartache’s on Me, Dixie Chicks
  • Landslide, Dixie Chicks
  • Die A Happy Man, Thomas Rhett
  • Stuck in a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of, U2
  • Stolen Dance, Milky Chance
  • FourFiveSeconds, Rihanna
  • Don’t Speak, No Doubt
  • 99% Invisible (podcast)
  • Bitch Sesh (podcast)
  • This American Life (podcast)
  • On Being with Krista Tippett (podcast)

 

Week by numbers.

Yes, it’s been awhile, but I’ve been busy! (I promise!)

The Queen #2 is done — like, complete and total final draft.  It’s off to the formatters.

  • 73,997, words.  I ended up cutting about 1,000 words from what I thought was the final draft to the real final.  I’m actually quite happy with this.  Basically, there is something great about reading on my Kindle and how that impacts the real experience of the book.
  • 224, pages, in case you were wondering.
  • 0, covers I’ve decided on.
  • 0, dates I’ve decided on for actually publishing the book.
  • 10,000AED, I managed to save after negotiating our rent yesterday.  Another year in Villa Hooks.
  • 1, dozen free chocolate covered strawberries I received (promotional).
  • 1, panel I’ll be speaking on this evening at NYUAD.
  • 1, pitch I’m working on for a NatGeo children’s show (no, I don’t have kids).
  • 1, article I’ve had accepted for Lonely Planet.
  • 1, article I’m hoping to place with USA Today (keep those fingers crossed).
  • 1, manuscript I need to start working on.
  • 1, fan fiction I’ll probably end up writing instead.
  • 1, book treatment I am actively avoiding.

The Queen of England: Grand Tour (more cover looks).

I realize you’ll probably not believe this, but the final draft of book #2 is almost done!  I guess I’m having similar feelings that I had with book #1 re: ‘it’s not really done just yet’ which is why I haven’t mentioned much about it this year.  So, I was a bit surprised today when I found some motivation to work on some cover looks (I had another crack at these in March 2017, if you’re interested to see).

As usual, I thought I would share with you, for feedback and other general comments.  I’m trying to figure out how to get rid of the overwhelming ‘blueness’ and other overlapping colors.  I’d like things to be a bit simpler/easy to read.  Also, in the interest of a series, I realize this is only close to the first cover in that it’s vaguely ‘historical.’  For all the evidence out there, books should look like they belong together, but I guess I’m kind of a ‘wait and see’ and I can always do a collection of covers once they are are all finished and published.

Sunday Sentence.

I have lived most of my life as a devotee of the philosophy that a man should not see two sevens in one day.”

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue

Mackenzi Lee

Better late than never, right?  Enjoying this book, but for some weird reason I’m slowly pacing my reading.

Week by numbers.

Hey gang!  I’ve been busy so far this year, and here’s some reasons why…

  • 1, cold I’ve managed to get.  For someone who rarely gets sick, I’m not quite sure what’s going on and basically pretending like it’s not happening.
  • 1, gym we’ve joined!  Hello, cliches for a new year, but this was long overdue.  Even with my cold, I made it to two classes this week with plans for another at the weekend.
  • 169, pages on the (almost) final draft of The Queen 2 edited. There will still be a final ‘final’ polish and a few story ideas I need to double check, but I’m hopeful to be finished by the end of the month so I can start writing 2018’s book.
  • 0, National Championships won by my beloved UGA.  We were so close, but I’m very proud of how the Dawgs finished the season. (Don’t ask Hubs, he’s still pretty broken up over the results).
  • 1, article accepted by Lonely Planet.  Let the pitching continue!
  • 10:00PM, time I went to bed on NYE.  Yes, adulting!
  • ~5,000, words (almost) fan fiction written in the past two weeks.  My muse was on FIRE and it’s been fun!  I’m not really sure the why of it, but I’m not complaining.
Gif related and unrelated to amount of fan fiction.

I hope your 2018 is off to an amazing (flu free) start!