about me, the writing life

It’s shaping up

It’s all go, chez Oliver. Yesterday my tech support guy (aka DH) got the self-hosted website up and running. I like the more minimal look, what do you think?

Today, I’ve edited all my Alex Oliver books to include a link to my newsletter, which I’m currently adding to via StoryOrigin App. That will probably change once I’ve wrestled MailChimp into working with this site, but in the mean time at least there’s something.

That involved:

  • Writing the Afterword for each book,
  • Deciding which book to offer for free in each book,
  • Re-sizing the new cover so it would display on Kindle/Kobo
  • Compiling the new files in Scrivener and checking to see if I included everything (sometimes I forget to switch the Afterword back on.)
  • Uploading all the new files to D2D and Amazon
  • Noticing that the Afterword in all the Alex Beecroft books will have to be altered too now in order to offer Romance books rather than the predominantly SF/F ones I’m currently offering. (Hopefully this may increase sign-up in future!)

All of that has taken me six hours, and there’s still so much more to do. But it’s one thing down, so it counts as progress.

After a short coffee break, I’ll start edits on Murder of a Working Ghost. Then when that’s done I’ll be able to think about writing new sci-fi. Probably new fantasy, to be honest. Did I say I was going to do a sequel to the Arising books? I am 🙂

If you fancy something like His Majesty’s Dragon combined with 18th Century Dracula, you might like to try The Arising books, but wait a little until I’ve got them under this name. They’ll be going into a new edition with some heavy edits first.

But now coffee!

about me, Fantasy Writing, the writing life

Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi,

I need your expert eagle eye.

The Cygnus Five books have been through an array of covers. It’s almost embarrassing. The first ones looked like Romance covers – not really appealing to fans of space opera. The second ones resembled hard SF and were colourless and unappealing. For the third ones, I went too far into the territory of old fashioned pulp SF from the 1970s – which was when I started reading SF/F, and thus burned into my brain as what SF/F ought to look like.

Finally it occurred to me to actually look at the covers of books that are selling today. Astonishing, I know.

I discovered three things;

  2. They’re all blue
  3. They have spaceships on them.

Cool, I thought. Let’s make a cover which is blue and has a spaceship on it. So I went to look for some pictures, and the first one I really loved was bright green. *Sigh.* So I attempted to make the bright green one blue. Then I made an actual blue one as well.

So now I really need your advice. Which of these two mockups do you think is the best?