I like to think I’m a quick learner. There are things I can do easily and things I can learn. Technical stuff, for example. I can do that, if slowly and to the accompaniment of a veritable comedy of errors. I may not have a flair for it, but I get there in the end.
“The techie stuff”, of course, has a distinct advantage. It’s either right or wrong; and if it’s wrong, it’s immediately obvious why and therefore it’s easy (well, possible) to put it right. There are other elements which you might not have an instinctive flair for but you can plod through, maybe with the occasional slight success, wondering all the while why some people seem to achieve phenomenal results with little or no trauma. I’m thinking marketing here.
Lastly there are the things you can’t do yourself. I’m thinking cover design. Technically I can stick some text on a photo and upload it to Amazon. I know that. I’ve done it. The results look…um.. amateur. (You can see them on this post.) A good cover needs to get the feel of the book, give the potential reader an idea of what they’re buying. It’s a task that’s beyond me.
In my new self-publishing adventure I’ve decided to contract out the cover design. The wonderful Elle J Rossi, who designed all my covers at Tirgearr Publishing, has taken on the task of producing a cover for Blank Space, the first in my Dangerous Friends series.
I’m not posting it just yet – it’ so good it deserves a post of its own, so you can wait a few days longer. Meanwhile I’ve been mulling over all the over covers Elle has done for me, trying to decide which is my favourite. (At the moment it’s Looking For Charlotte.)
One thing’s certain. A quick glance at Elle’s cover and my own poor attempt shows the difference a professional makes.