Updated description of “Writing for You: A Novelist’s Guide to the Craft of Fiction.”

Screen Shot 2013-05-06 at 12.06.02 PMI wanted to give you guys an update on Writing for You: A Novelist’s Guide to the Craft of Fiction.

First, as you can see to the left, I redid the cover after negative feedback concerning the first one. Much thanks to all who were honest about their opinions.

Multiple people found the first cover drab and the school theme of the pencil image unattractive. I considered what y’all said, and I like this cover more.

Specifically, I like the symbolism of the ivy (growth) and the door (entry into something and someplace new.) It feels appropriate for a writer’s handbook. I also love how colorful it is; it isn’t drab like the first one. Please let me know your thoughts, because I can always change the cover a third time if people as a whole don’t like this new cover as much as I do. (I won’t be offended. I want a good cover that will draw attention to my book and its content.)

I’ve also adjusted the table of content, rearranging some chapters and adding a few. Here’s the new list:

  1. INTRODUCTION: Who I am, what I do, and what qualifications I have to be writing this book. Basically, why should you care what advice I have about writing? (Including a brief description of every novel I’ve written.)
  2. PREFACE: Why anyone should do this crazy thing called writing a novel. What are the reasons for writing that will set you up for success?
  3. CHAPTER ONE: What to know before you write
  4. CHAPTER TWO: The cardinal rules of writing
  5. CHAPTER THREE: Making and managing time to write
  6. CHAPTER FOUR: On outlines
  7. CHAPTER FIVE: On character development
  8. CHAPTER SIX: On first drafts
  9. CHAPTER SEVEN: On dialogue (*new)
  10. CHAPTER EIGHT: On point of view (*new)
  11. CHAPTER NINE: On editing
  12. CHAPTER TEN: On style
  13. CHAPTER ELEVEN: On independent publishing (*new)
  14. CHAPTER TWELVE: On social media marketing

I’m specifically excited about the point of view chapter. I really like it so far. I added TONS of new material to the few blog posts I have on the topic, and that’s really exciting, because I want to have as much new material as I can to make the book worthwhile even for those who are faithful followers of my blog.

Thanks a gazillion to those who offered suggestions about what they would like to see in the book. You really helped me rearrange, add to, and finalize the material I plan to include. I sincerely want to be a great and useful resourceful for writers, especially new writers.

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19 responses to “Updated description of “Writing for You: A Novelist’s Guide to the Craft of Fiction.”

  1. Hi Victoria, l like the cover, much nicer and inviting, only one thing, your name is too small, make it bigger!, be proud, show it off, you did the work, let them know who wrote it, (but not so big and bold it is garish)
    really looking forward to it because there are now some chapters that i know will help me a great deal
    keep writing, for you know you have to…….

  2. RE: the cover. As Andrew said above, your name should be larger and also in a darker colour so it stands out more. As for the picture, despite your explanation of the symbolism behind it, it does not appear to have any relevance to writing. If you could perhaps find an image of a desk covered in paper before a window (or french doors) looking onto a garden it would cover both the literal and symbolic interpretations. Best of luck! πŸ™‚

  3. forgingshadows

    I don’t think I took a look at the first cover, but this one is nice. I don’t know whether this is relevant or not (it seems like a nitpick) but it seems a tad unbalanced to me. There’s a lot of the blue background sticking out at the bottom. Maybe that would be negated with purpleandrew’s suggestion of making your name bigger?

  4. I like this one much better too! I agree about the comments on the first cover. It had a negative vibe (hours spent doing homework and judging by the number of pencils it was going to be brutal!). I love the colors in the new one, the symbolism of growth (ivy, green), and the reddish-orange flowers have an energetic vibe. It feels like I will be re-energized to write once I’ve grown in knowledge from reading it.
    I do have a minor suggestion or two but I also think it looks fine the way it is. What if you had the door slightly ajar rather than closed? Inviting us in to discover all your secrets about writing? The blue block seems a little out of place to me. What if you had the green ivy continue into the title, maybe wrap around it or change to a font with an ivy element in it?
    Oh, and I agree, your name definitely needs to be bigger!

  5. I love the new cover! If you’re still open to suggestions, being a reviewer I’d like to suggest devoting a whole chapter to reviews and reviewers: how to get a review, how to handle negative reviews, proper conduct, great resources/reviewer recommendations, etc. I don’t know if you covered that under Social Media Marketing, but it is an important marketing tool.

    Other than that (assuming you’re still adding any changes) I’d say you’ve covered pretty much everything an unpublished/first published writer would need to know!

    • Thanks Carrie!!! That’s a great idea about reviews, for sure. πŸ™‚ I don’t really talk about that much, and it would be a great addition, even if it’s not a full chapter but, like you said, linked in with the marketing chapter.

  6. I love watching your progress on your book. The new cover is bright and bold, but I agree with others that you name should be bolder. I think the chapters on independent publishing and social media marketing are important ones. Lots of writers will want that information.

  7. The book sounds great and very informative!

    I like this cover better but think it could still be improved. I love the symbolism of growth and entering somewhere new, but I think the graphic needs to take up most of the cover. I’d get rid of a lot of the light blue block. I also think a cover that’s drawn instead of a photograph might stand out better. Definitely agree that the door would be better slightly ajar, otherwise it looks like the door’s been shut in your face! Both of the smaller fonts could do with enlarging too, particularly your name. I hope this is helpful and doesn’t sound too critical!

  8. I agree with the person who said that the picture has no relevance to writing. Also, I’m not a fan of the blue combined with the image of a green door and red flowers. Maybe try a neutral tone, such as beige or a pastel shade. One of the things that I love about your blog is how you present the information. You are the exact opposite of a “know-it-all” and have writing concerns and faults like everyone, yet share helpful information that is accurate and reliable. My suggestion is to take a high-quality photo of your own desk or work area (doesn’t matter if it’s messy, since most of ours are as well) and crop it for artistic purpose. You might some inspiration there for a new cover photo! Hope this helps.

  9. Here’s my two cents. I’m glad you added Chapter 11. I know that part of self publishing is also self promoting. Maybe you could add some tips on promoting your book. That’s a hot topic right now. As for the cover I agree that the photo should reflect what the book is about. As an award winning photographer I can help you with that:)

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