Monday, December 31, 2012

My Goals for 2013!

Happy New Year! How fast did 2012 go?!

2012 was such an amazing year for me. I reconnected with old friends, married my boyfriend of six years, and self-published my first book! What I didn't really do was accomplish many of the goals I'd set myself for 2012...whoops. For a recap on my goals, check out this post.

In 2013, I want to maintain all the things I started last year. I want to be more confident and stand up for myself. I want to learn to forgive, but not forget. I want to be determined. I want to be consistent and disciplined when it comes to writing.

These were my goals for 2012 and whether I reached them or not:

  • Have a polished manuscript of Runaway Mortal (May/June) Didn't achieve
  • Begin first draft of Broken Angel RM#2 (Feb/March) Didn't achieve
  • Send out queries for Runaway Mortal (June/July) Didn't achieve
  • Outline Cursed Demon RM#3 (August) Achieved
  • Finish first draft of Last Summer (Sep/Oct) Didn't achieve
  • Begin first draft of Siren Song (Nov/Dec) Didn't achieve
Reading, Authors & Blogging
  • Read 100 books this year Didn't achieve - I think I read something like 60 - 70 books. I stopped keeping count
  • Support more self-published authors Achieved
  • Re-design blog - new title, banner Achieved
  • Post book reviews twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays. On Sunday do a writing related post. Didn't achieve
  • Host more giveaways Achieved
Life in General
  • Travel to a place I haven't been before Didn't achieve
  • Do something regularly that I haven't done before - yoga, martial arts, indoor rock climbing Achieved - I started boxing towards the end of the year and then stopped, but I plan on starting it again in the new year
  • Catch up with old friends Achieved
  • Do the Harbour Bridge climb Didn't achieve - it's going to be one of my goals for 2013

As you can see, I love making goals. As for accomplishing them, not so good at that! Nevertheless, I've written up my goals for 2013 below. I hope I can get most of them done this year. :)

  • Publish three books this year
  • Publish FALLING FOR HADIE in February
  • Publish RUNAWAY MORTAL in April (finally!)
  • Have a clear writing plan for the rest of the year
  • Query an agent by the end of the year for CURSERS
Reading, Authors & Blogging
  • Read 100 books this year
  • Support self-published authors
  • Blog at least once every week
  • Host more giveaways
Life in General
  • Travel overseas
  • Try something new
  • Do the Harbour Bridge Climb
  • Take a yoga class

Those are my goals. What are your goals for 2013?

Friday, December 7, 2012

Cover Reveal: Falling for Hadie

The cover of Falling for Hadie was made nearly two weeks ago, but I have yet to do an "official" cover reveal post for it.

Since most of you have probably already seen the cover, I'm going to talk about the process my cover designer, Eden, and I went through to get to the final product. I think designing the cover is probably my favourite part of the entire process. It really feels like your book is "real" when you get that cover with your name on it.

Falling for Hadie was a little trickier to figure out. In terms of an overall "theme" for the With Me series, I had none. It's an "indirect sequel" to Impossible, so I wasn't sure if I should have a recurring theme for each book in the series or just do something completely different for each one.

I looked through a LOT of stock photos until I found this image:

It was like a scene was taken right out of the book, like a stolen moment, so I decided it would be perfect for the cover. Then Eden broke the bad news. This image was going to cost $500 to use!! Well, we definitely couldn't use it now, so Eden started looking for alternatives. None of them appealed to me, so I showed Eden this image that I thought was pretty cute.

We both agreed that the arm/sleeve on the guy looked "weird" and decided to find something else. Then I found this image. I thought it was so cute and romantic, so I sent it to Eden.

Eden started making the cover and sent this mock-up back to me:

Right away I said I wasn't feeling it. It seemed too romantic and cute to me. And too pink. Way too much pink. Eden agreed that she wasn't feeling it either, so I suggested a few tweaks. This is what we ended up with:

After all that I STILL wasn't feeling it, so Eden said she'd have a think about it and get back to me. This is the part where I have to give Eden all the credit. She went off and worked her magic and came back with this ALL ON HER OWN! (You know the photo where we thought the guy's arm looked weird? Well, same couple, but just holding hands!)

When I first saw it, my heart stopped. It was perfect. It was what I'd wanted, but hadn't been able to translate to Eden. I loved how she took the basic idea of Impossible's cover and put a spin on it for Falling for Hadie. The hand holding was perfect because Lincoln and Hadie have a sweet relationship. There isn't a lot of hot and cold stuff going on with them like there was with Ashton and Luca from Impossible.

But then I realised that the cover was similar to Tammara Webber's Between the Lines series. Eden hadn't actually seen the covers for the series, so after she'd checked them out we both stewed on it for a while.

Meanwhile, Eden was working her magic again and came back with these two beauties:

I was completely sold! I loved the gradient background and decided that it was perfect, that it tied in with the cover of Impossible, and that we would continue with a similar-ish theme for the remaining books (the characters faces not being visible and their positioning would convey what the story was about).

After all of Eden's hard work, this is what I settled on for the final cover of Falling for Hadie:

Running away from his old life in New York City, Lincoln Bracks ends up in the small town of Statlen, Iowa. He isn’t interested in making friends or getting to know anyone. He just wants to keep his head down and disappear amongst the crowd.

Nursing a broken heart and the realization that the boy she’s loved her entire life isn’t Prince Charming, Hadie Swinton is set against ever falling in love. But when new boy, Lincoln arrives in town, she may have to eat her words.

Hadie fears being hurt and Lincoln fears hurting her, so when they begin spending more time together and form a connection, they try to fight it at all costs. When they finally start to give into their feelings, Lincoln’s secret stands in the way of them ever being together.

Falling in love was the last thing Lincoln wanted to do, so how will he convince himself to fall out of it?

If you need a graphic designer for your next book cover, any banners, or something graphical, I highly recommend Eden Crane Design. Check out her website and take a look at some of the beautiful designs she has created. She is great to work with! :)