When I released my first book, Miss Mabel’s School for Girls, I did a post showing the book cover progressions Cory Clubb and I went through to get the final, official book cover. So many fans responded about how they enjoyed learning the process that I decided to give you a glimpse into the whole process of making a book: covers, editing, typesetting, and setting up a social media campaign.

Creating a Novel

The Making of a Book Cover

May 6th, 2014- Email Jenny with Seedlings Online to request her work on my next cover.

May 8th- sign contract and pay deposit for next two book covers.

May 12th- Send Jenny the paperwork for ideas with book covers.

June 12th- Jenny sends first “comp boards” with ideas.

Comp Boards for Antebellum Awakening with Seedlings Online

Comp Boards for Antebellum Awakening with Seedlings Online

June 23- Choose and tweak covers over emails

Jun 27- Jenny sends second round of comp boards based on previous decisions.

Comp Boards for Antebellum Awakening with Seedlings Online Comp Boards for Antebellum Awakening with Seedlings Online Comp Boards for Antebellum Awakening with Seedlings Online

Jun 27th- show comp boards to friends for opinions

Jun 28th- Email Jenny with decision. Talk license agreements, tweaks, etc.

Jun 30th- Final comp boards sent with requested tweaks. I had her do the line ‘Book Two in the Network Series’ in both gold and white.

Comp Boards for Antebellum Awakening with Seedlings Online

July 6th- The front cover for Antebellum Awakening is finalized!

July 30th- I send Jenny a holding blurb, the barcode, my bio, imprint logo, and design ideas for back cover.

August 16th- send finalized blurb.

August 18th- Jenny sends tentative full cover for approval.

Comp Boards for Antebellum Awakening with Seedlings Online

The Editing Process

First draft: Started February 25th. Completed April 7th. Word count: 64, 537 words

Second draft: Started April 9th. Word count: 83, 275

Third draft: Started April 22nd. Word count: 94, 678

Send to beta readers @ 94, 170 words.

Fourth draft: Started May 23rd after beta readers comments. Word count 94, 950

Fifth draft: Send to developmental editors June 5th, 2014 96. Word count: 96, 771 words. Developmental edits returned July 21st and and July 5th.

Sixth draft: Apply suggested/needed changes. Send to line/copy editor August 1st. Received edits August 30th.

Send to second round of beta readers while with the editor for line/copy edits.

Seventh draft: Finalized draft @ 97,473. Send to proofreader and typesetter 9.5.14. Edits returned 9.12.14

Antebellum Awakening, the second book in the Network Series, Releases Today!

Designing the Interior

I love that I have control over my book as an independent author, but once I met Chris at Atthis Arts (through reading a fabulous epic fantasy book that he put together titled Spireseeker), I knew that I wanted him to take care of my interior design for Antebellum Awakening.

This is the schedule I gave Chris:

Sept 3-4– Send him the same MS I sent proofreader. He typesets the ARC file with his magic.

 Section breaks with dragon filigree from front cover:

Typesetting for Antebellum Awakening: releases October 15th!


Dropped letters at the beginning of chapters:
Typesetting for Antebellum Awakening: releases October 15th!

Chris was also incredibly patient. Here is the following list of edits I forced him to endure.

9/5- sent him ARC manuscript that also went to proofreader

9/10- Chris returned typeset file so I could process proofs for ARCs

9/30- I sent him 450+ corrections post-proofreader and after I read through the physical book.

10/6- Chris returned edited MS

10/10- I sent Chris 20 more edits after my friend (a 7th grade english teacher) found them.

10/11- returned edited book with final file for publication!

A Social Media Blitz

Detailing all the things that go into a social media campaign would be a crazy task (because there are far too many), so I’m just going to include a list of things that I do to prepare for the release of a book. Not comprehensive, btw. I can’t even keep track of all that I’m doing for it. It’s not in order either, because that’s just crazy.

~ Contact book bloggers (about 20) at least 6 weeks in advance to see if they’ll take on the book.

~ Send advance copies out when available

~ Set up “street team” of exceptional fans of MMSFG to help promote AA. (I ended up with 17).

~ Update website pages with new book.

~ Arrange for ARC’s of paperbacks to be prepared for street team to get in advance.

~ Contact local t-shirt design store to prepare swag for AA.

~ Pick up t-shirts. Send with signed, ARC of book to street team.

~ Answer interview questions, record video interviews as requested, and prepare guest posts. (This is spread out over about a month and takes longer than you think.)

~ Gather official “swag” for giveaway

~ Take professional photos of swag to put on the internet

~ Prepare posts for my own website

~ Start Goodreads giveaway about 6 weeks before book releases

~ Start FB event, Goodreads event, and G+ event

~ Upload swag pictures to MMSFG FB page

~ Put up page on official website for giveaway instructions

~ Contact book bloggers for release day book blogger blast

~ Coordinate swag pictures, cover photos, and title banner shots with all people doing posts for AA.

~ Prepare posts and images for Pinterest

~ Contact BookBub for add for MMSFG during launch of AA

~ Apologize to my husband in advance for how stressed I become


 Any questions?