Self-Publishing For Teens Part 2 – Covers: Where to Find a Quality Cover?

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Great covers make or break books. A good cover may cause a customer to take a second look at your book. While a bad cover could get you overlooked or worse, scorned.

Of course, some the best covers are made by professionals, but these cost money. Something which we, teenage authors, sometimes lack.

I have never made a cover and have no idea how to run Photoshop. That said, it is a possible resource to make covers.

My cover (which I love) was made by a NaNoWriMo YWP participant. If I you are part of NaNoWriMo YWP, I highly recommend checking out the art part of the forum, where many teens are willing to make covers.

Kindle Cover Creator: I have never used this tool, but I believe that you can take one of your pictures or from their selection of images and use it as the background for your cover, before further customizing it. (See link for more information)

CreateSpace Cover Creator: I did use this for my first book. It worked quite well, once I submitted the right image. At this stage I did not have a back cover made, so I used one of their templates.

Unfortunately, the Kindle cover I had didn’t work (I think the words were maybe too close to the sides of the cover) . In order to use the template I chose, I got just the background image of my cover, not the words. This worked and was able to add a tile, author’s name, back blurb.

Once that was figured out, the cover turned out great (you can go to Amazon and compare the paperback with the ebook cover, both are great, though they are slightly different) .

Tip: Make sure that your cover is the correct size as well as having the recommended DPI.

Tip 2: Be patient with the cover and make sure that it’s a good one.

Next week there will be a post on formatting your book. So I hope that you’ll come back and check it out.

Please comment if you have any questions. I hope that this post was helpful. If it was, please tell your friends about the blog and subscribe.

Writing for His glory,

David B. Hunter

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Retreat Update

Possible Retreat Cover Blurry Background With WordsToday I finished the rough draft of RetreatHurray! I am now going to take a break from this story for a week or two, before starting the editing process.

As of right now, this book is a tad more than 70,000 words, we’ll see what it’ll look like after editing!

Lord willing, this book should be published some time in 2016, hopefully before this time next year.

Keep writing for His glory!

David B. Hunter

Self-Publishing for Teens – Part 1: Edit Your Book

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This may seem obvious, but this is really important. Your book needs to be good, not perfect, but good. My first book was definitely not perfect. It had typos and other issues, but it was a lot better than the first draft.

Please, I beg you. Do not finish your rough draft and say, “This is perfect. Now I just have to upload this to Amazon and it’ll be a snap.”

Your rough draft may be good, or great, but there is a reason that it’s called a rough draft. They are usually rife with problems. Mine certainly was! At the end of the first draft I had about 29,000 words, by the time the book was finished, it was slightly over 45,000 words long! I added acknowledgements, a table of contents, and bibliography, but still, that’s a large difference in word count.

If possible have another person look at you manuscript. Maybe a parent, friend, or relative. Ideally, one which knows grammar and punctuation. They can spot errors that you could have missed.

Tip: Don’t be rushed. Give yourself plenty of time. It was the night before my deadline and my book still needed to be proofread. It still had a lot of errors.  My mom (she was my editor) stayed up, proofing the manuscript. Don’t do that!

Tip 2: Don’t be afraid to go back and fix typos after you’ve published the book. Especially in the Kindle format. I’ve changed the files like four times.

Tip 3: Try to find all typos and fix all of your mistakes before you publish, but don’t expect your first book to be perfect. It’s an accomplishment just to publish a book at your age.

Tip 4: Don’t get too hung up on errors and mistakes (like I often am). You don’t want errors, but it’s worse not to write. Find and fix errors, learn from your mistakes, and make your next book even better.

“The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.” – Henry Ford

Don’t stop writing. Don’t stop improving. Always keep learning.

I hope this post was helpful and encouraging, please post any questions or comments. (If it was helpful please tell your friends about this blog. I would really appreciate it!)

Writing for His glory,

David B. Hunter

Why I write

It’s a neat dream to be a professional author, right? You get to stay at home all day and peck on your keyboard. Besides, you can make some great money entertaining your readers.

Those may be some good reasons, but I have a higher one. I want to positively impact the lives of my readers, not just entertain, but inspire. Not only making earthly treasure, but amassing heavenly gain.

I want to bring hope to the despairing. Write characters to role model. Shine a light in the sometimes dark world of books.

This won’t just be a just a job, but a mission field. To spread the good news of Christ, encouraging believers, and just giving kids something wholesome to fill their minds with.

Through all my books, future and past, I want to glorify God. Whether that’s in an overtly Christian book, or one which has Christian themes, it really doesn’t matter as long as God uses my words for His purposes.David Author Picture

So, yes, that’s why I write and I pray that God will use my writing for His glory.

I suggest you ask yourself why you are really writing. For God’s glory or your own?

First Post

This is my first post on this brand new blog! I hope to be posting writing tips and updates on my books.  Since my projects need quite a bit of historical research, I may be sharing some of that with you. What do you, the reader want to see on this blog? Let’s all write for His glory.