Welcome to my new site. Isn’t it shiny?
To be honest, it’s still a work in progress. There are a lot of components of the website I am still trying to tweak. Perhaps the most important part is the mailing list sign up. If you haven’t already signed up, you should. I won’t talk about everything coming down the line to people signed up there, but I’ll give you a hint — FREE BOOKS!
Today, since I’m well into the release schedule of my 6th Grade Revengers series, I thought I’d talk a bit about the journey to where I am with that series. And the struggle that goes along with marketing adventure and action books for the 9-12-year-old reader (and their parents/family/teachers since that is who really makes the decision about purchasing).
Blog posts without pictures = bad. So I thought it might be cool to share the progression of cover art for the series since those images actually do a good job speaking to the process.
In 2014 I was kicking around the idea with my sister. I wanted to come up with a series of shorter books that could follow two kids who seemed to do good despite their best efforts not to. The idea took shape and I started writing.
Originally, I called it The 6th GRADE ASSASSINS and book 1 in my series was the story that has become book 2 in the current series.
My agent and I kicked the idea around a bit, and decided “Assassins” as a title for kids who didn’t actually kill anyone, didn’t feel right (making them actual assassins, also, didn’t feel right– haha).6th Grade Revengers became the name, which was a title I’d loved just a bit less than “assassin.” So it went out on submission and, despite good feedback, wasn’t picked up.
I made a decision I’d put the titles out myself. I’d done a lot of work writing them, and I wasn’t keen on going with a smaller publisher (as my experience with small presses hasn’t been awesome). After some more feedback, and showing people the mockup of the cover above, there was a lot of people who thought an illustrated cover would be more easily marketed to the 9-12 audience.
I wanted to get an idea regarding what an illustrated cover would feel like, I gave that a try also.
I actually loved the illustrated artwork, but getting an appropriate title treatment was a nightmare (I really don’t like either of the options above. Furthermore, since I was going to put these books out on my own, I was the one who’d have to conceptualize the cover and give direction to the illustrator. It took quite a lot of time and effort to get the scene depicted above, and I wasn’t convinced I’d picked the correct one. Illustrated covers aren’t cheap, and getting it wrong wasn’t appealing to me, so I went back with the other design, tweaked somewhat.
And there you have it. The birth of THE REVENGERS.
Don’t forget, if you want to read the first one for free, subscribe to my newsletter and it will arrive in your inbox right away (well, you have to confirm you subscribed to the newsletter first, but after that, BOOM!)