Enterprise

Posted by jennifer gibson on Friday, April 19, 2013
Yes, I'm a Star Trek fan and no, that's not what this post is about.  I told you that my mind was a strange place to be, it can be rather quirky at times ;) 

I've always been very much of a hands on type of person, taking control of my life by running my own businesses.  Doing freelance work required an immense amount of dedication and focus.  It also meant that I had to be willing to take risks by venturing outside of my comfort zone such as doing wedding photography or portraits.  Did I enjoy it? Initially, yes I did.  Then I had series of mishaps where the battery died at the most inopportune time, got stuck in pouring rain, ran out of memory cards or the flash didn't work.  Money was very tight and I was unable to afford a back up camera or even specialized lighting equipment.  Then one day, during a very long wedding shoot with difficult patrons and uncooperative weather, I realized that this wasn't me and that the passion was gone.  The stress wasn't worth it, especially since those were once in a lifetime events.  I've since then discovered a number of other photographers who went through the same thing I did and stopped doing weddings.  It was a relief to know that I wasn't alone in this. 

That was around the same time I decided to really pursue another interest of mine, writing and getting my books published.  Even though it meant doing a lot of self promotions and aggressive marketing, it was worth it.  Since I did all of the work myself, it meant receiving a higher percentage of the profits which was a lovely bonus.  I was over the moon.  It was a gratifying feeling to be so accomplished. 

Since getting a publisher, my focus has shifted a bit since they have been helping me in getting my books out there.  The audience is much wider now.  Not only has writing turned into a full time job, so has advertising my books.  It means putting in more money to get the word out and so far, it's working.  I have met fans from all over the world who have fallen in love with my stories and genuinely interested in my writing.  That's simply amazing. 

Lately, my second novel, Compass has been featured in several book awards and book cover contests which is extraordinary. This helps bring in more attention to them which is greatly appreciated.  You can pitch in too by visiting those sites and adding your votes or comments - the links are listed below at the end of this blog.

Did you know that I designed the covers for all three books in the trilogy series? I've had readers exclaim how much they love the covers, particularly the Scrabble tiles on Sway and the dramatic, sparkling effect on Compass.  Those are all actual photos that I had taken in the area where I live.  I'm a nature photographer, illustrator and graphic designer so it was a natural fit for me to utilize all three skills in producing those cool covers. 

Upon creating the first one, I had initially wondered if it was necessary to use an image of a teen or even someone holding hands as a focal point, then realized that it should have a more mysterious approach to it.  I wanted it to be subtle and intriguing, with strong vibrant colours that convey a moody atmosphere.  And honestly? I actually couldn't afford to purchase any stock photos of models at the time.  So I had to make do with what I had and use my talents.  By the time Compass was ready, I knew that it had to feature the same concept of portraying an interesting item, a clue as to what will happen in the story.  The third cover is ready to go once the editing stage is complete.  Like the first two, it will also portray a simple and clever hint which is the trademark for the trilogy series. 

I've had readers ask me why did I include Scrabble tiles or a compass on the cover? Simply put, to make you curious enough to pick it up.  For Sway, I wanted to portray the title in a unique manner and it worked out beautifully.  The Scrabble tiles is also a hint as to what transpires in the story.  For Compass, I originally had my cat, Bella, on the cover since she is in it, however, it became apparent that it wasn't a compelling reason to reveal that particular point of view.  And unfortunately, not everyone likes cats.  Since the series is about a teen's journey into finding her sense of direction and discovering what her path in life is, I needed to stick with that theme hence the choice of using a compass.  What will the third book Destiny reveal? You'll find out in a few months. 

Throughout the series, all of the covers convey a sense of magic woven into the fabric of their stories. They reflect a sense of mystery and innocence through the eyes of a hearing impaired teen. 

If you want to view the book awards and book cover contests, here are the links for you to add your vote (thank you for your contribution, it means a lot to me!):

AUTHORSdB Cover Contest > Vote by selecting the bar entitled "Image Rating" and clicking on the stars or by adding your comment - 
Compass: http://www.authorsdb.com/book-cover-awards/young-adult/compass-380 
Sway: http://www.authorsdb.com/book-cover-awards/young-adult/sway-382

The Book Awards > Click on the stars to vote: http://thebookawards.com/awards/compass/



"To reach the stars, all you have to do is believe."

Cheers!

Jenn




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