C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m

Write and publish with love and fury.

Step One in Book Cover Design: Find a Wonderfully Mad Genius…

Striking covers are more important than seeing the author’s whole name. Your name is with the listing of the book, so don’t sweat that. What’s more important? Choose a cover designer with skill, confidence and experience who is easy to work with. For me, that’s award-winning designer Kit Foster of KitFosterDesign.com.

Thanks for two great covers, Kit. You’re one of Scotland’s national treasures.

I’ve spoken with some of my mastermind group about my omnibus for This Plague of Days and the Hit Man Series. Readers seem to love binge reads these days more than they love serialization. I know some authors are turning to serialization again with the changes that Kindle Unlimited has wrought, but I think you’ll see more omnibuses and box sets as the writing community adjusts, and possibly writes faster than they have done in the past.

Or read the trilogy all at once for one low price.

Read the trilogy all at once for one low price.

~ For more of my mad genius, please subscribe for updates about new books, podcasts and more at AllThatChazz.com. Thanks!

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Ebooks: What makes a great cover? What makes a bad one?

Click it to grab it. Just 99 cents!

Click it to grab it. Just 99 cents!

It’s very instructive to read the analysis of what makes covers better or worse. What makes a great ebook cover? It’s often easier to learn what makes a poor one. Art is subjective. We often don’t know what components go into making art “good”. We just know what we like. However, there are graphic designers who, with skill and experience, inject more objective analysis into art than we ordinary mortals. Joel Friedlander, at The Book Designer, is one of those magicians who can break down why a cover works, or, at the very least, he knows why it doesn’t work.

 This week, Six Seconds won February’s ebook cover design award on Joel’s website. Check it out, but have a look at all the books. Once you see the covers through Mr. Friedlander’s eyes, you’ll begin to reevaluate all the covers you see. You’ll look for what’s missing as well as what design elements hit the mark.

Kit Foster: The Dude Came Through

My graphic designer is Kit Foster of KitFosterDesign.com and he gets all the credit for the win. Sometimes we have long discussions about what the covers of my books should look like. For instance, our back and forth over Higher Than Jesus was exhaustive.

For Six Seconds, I was in a hurry to get the instant guide out because it’s the first book about the Vine app. All I told Kit was: “Gimme a stopwatch wrapped in vines, please. Here’s the title. Do your thing and I won’t ask for any tweaks, I swear to God.” Kit’s solid and, as usual, he delivered excellent art. (He also won for his cover of Higher Than Jesus in the hardboiled mystery category of the Venture Galleries Award recently.) 

Cool guy talk

Higher than Jesus Final NEW copyI’ve plugged Kit plenty over time because I think authors need him and skilled designers like him. If you’re still shy, then you’ll love to eavesdrop on a conversation I had with Kit recently. I just interviewed Kit on the Cool People Podcast. You’ll find him sweet, friendly and Scottish. We talk a little about a lot of things: bad drugs, bad drug laws, good drugs, Breaking Bad, what inspires us and, of course, what goes into making a book cover work or fail. 

Step 1. Have a listen to the Cool People Podcast. (Subscribe, donate, apply to be a guest @rchazzchute on Twitter, do jumping jacks etc.,…) Enjoy.Cool+People+Podcast+Final

Step 2. Go to KitFosterDesign.com and start up your conversation with Kit about your next book cover.

 ~ If you like the Cool People Podcast, you may also enjoy my other podcast, All That Chazz, wherein I monologue, do readings from my crime novels and goof around. Find those podcasts and links to all books by Robert Chazz Chute at AllThatChazz.com. For  highlights from all my various feeds and content, check out my Rebelmouse page here.

Filed under: awards, book marketing, Books, podcasts, publishing, What about you?, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

UBC #15: What’s missing from this thriller’s back matter?

Something is missing from the following back matter from Bigger Than Jesus.

Pop quiz, hotshot! What’s missing?

About the Author

After several years working in the publishing industry, I took a long hiatus and then founded Ex Parte Press. I was a journalist and magazine columnist and now write in a lead-lined bunker full-time. I’m happily chained to my writing desk by an intravenous line feeding me espresso. My desk chair is a toilet and I’m writing as fast and as well as I can.

Thank you so much for reading Bigger Than Jesus. If you liked it, it will help Jesus Diaz and me immensely if you could please leave a happy review on Goodreads or Amazon or wherever you bought this book. Watch for the next instalment in this series: Higher Than Jesus, coming soon. Five books are planned for this series so far. If you’d like to get a glimpse of Jesus as a mature, more professional, hit man, you can find the story that started his character in my collection of short stories, Self-help for Stoners. You’ll find he’s more polished, but things still go awry. All the latest updates about my books can be found at AllThatChazz.com.

After this note I have a list of my other titles and notes on how to contact me through my websites, email, media inquiries and a note about my podcast and Twitter.

Steady…ready…go!

Here’s my answer about what’s missing:

In its current incarnation, I haven’t loaded up the first chapter of the follow-up book in The Hit Man Series.

Click to get Bigger Than Jesus

It’s written and I should include it. People like a sneak peek and, after spending so much time with my clever, funny and scarred protagonist, they will probably want to get a hint at where Jesus Diaz goes next. I think I really need to include a chapter from Higher Than Jesus. His story continues in unexpected ways, means and places in a plot that includes Neo-nazis, a street gang, drugs, arms, a very tall blonde and a plot to assassinate the President of the United States.

Fortunately, since I can upload at any time, it’s never too late for an afterthought, an improvement or a tweak.

Next question:

What else do you want to see in the back matter of a book you’ve enjoyed?

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TED Talk: How to make better book covers

No, I don’t agree that a book is about the smell. Still, a fun and very good presentation about linking your cover image with what it’s really all about: Reaching into your brain, giving your brain content and leaving you content.

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Writing Contest Prize: A cover design for your book

Collaborative writing exercises—such as the cl...
Image via Wikipedia

Write a little.

You might get a lot.

Details here:

The Writing Bomb‏

Filed under: Contest announcement, Writers, writing contests, ,

Winner of Writer's Digest's 2014 Honorable Mention in Self-published Ebook Awards in Genre

The first 81 lessons to get your Buffy on

More lessons to help you survive Armageddon

"You will laugh your ass off!" ~ Maxwell Cynn, author of Cybergrrl

Available now!

Fast-paced terror, new threats, more twists.

An autistic boy versus our world in free fall

Suspense to melt your face and play with your brain.

Action like a Guy Ritchie film. Funny like Woody Allen when he was funny.

Jesus: Sexier and even more addicted to love.

For my author site and the Chazz network, click the blood spatter below.

See my books, blogs, links and podcasts.

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