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Hi Authors and Dreamers,

Keeping up to date on book covers, I finally received the books ordered from KDP Print. It was a much quicker delivery than I expected, so I was very happy about that. I thought I would have to wait another month because of the pandemic, but they are still operating smoothly. I give them a serious thanks for their good work. Diligence is their motto despite their precarious situation and so many events happening in USA today.  I can see why it is the World leader as a nation. They keep plodding on.

This is a pic of the five books I worked on since early April when lockdown began. I can tell you it has been a relief for my head. Otherwise I might have gone crazy. Now I have the books I worked on it seems like the world is a better place suddenly. Two of these are new titles that have never been published before, Mermaid and Quest.

Doing up Runaway Princesses as a new 6 x 9 was a challenge. I changed some of the pictures and made them glow a bit. Everything I do seems intense and I get carried away for a time and forget everything else. Now I am editing every one of them. That is the most hateful job for me as I get brain drain from just thinking about it all. But, I have had a silver lining to the matter. A beloved one has offered to proof read two of the titles (PTL) and has already done Quest with great acclaim. 2 typos found! Yes, that is what I need. Also a slight adjustment in the clues given to the reader, so I hope he is on the right trail. He loved this book so much that we found ourselves talking about the character and his problems as if he was a real person (out there somewhere). I must add this is a techo guy who does not readily like to read unless it's a circuit diagram or some technical data. This is a win for me after many years. He is thorough as well, so that is his gifting.

3 on a Table
3 on a Table

This is how they look on a small table. You can see my Five Golden Rings... is twice as fat as my new Quest & Crown. I will give all the weights and sizes later when they are for sale, approved by their creator - me. They are like my little children to me, but able to be shared in that big bad world out there, where people need something to keep them sane and focussed on life and its good side, and to have laughter and joy again. It is a good time for everyone to read or create and to allow their creative side to flourish in a time of pandemic.  I hope you like them.

There are more to come.

These are the three books I received today. The little band indicated these are proofs, so they need to be approved for selling on KDP Print on Amazon.

I just wanted you to see the difference in sizes, how fat they are.

Quest & Crown
Quest & Crown

This is the first time I have this book in my hot little hand (literally hot).

I began this story in April, finished it in June, and spend 3 months editing.

That is a record for my writing. Usually I take years to get a book finished. It shows that I have had more me-time to get things done that I love doing. If I was 20 years younger I think I would be happier, but better late than never. The idea came and the characters told their own story. It is written with the viewpoint of a wonderful Knight, a man of valour and character, which is a nice change. I love his character, and his weakness for women make him more adorable. He is discrete and determined to finish his quest, but the interruptions by beautiful and wonderful women (some have bad characters) makes it spicey and intriguing. (Very alluring as my sister might say)

This knight, Garty (name came to me) Musdo, has one friend, a horse, Brill (came to me), and he is worn out with his investigations. He must get a hurry on and find someone who is practically invisible. It is set in 1799 and he rides his way through the hills and dales to find the baby, who is due for a very big inheritance and crown.

It follows a man's heart to the last drop of testosterone and has a satisfying outcome, which makes it opposite to a lot of stuff we are seeing on the News lately. So, this is a good counteraction for those struggling with sadness, loss of hope and joy and living wild, like we used to (in 2019).

I am thinking of a sequel for this one. No spoilers.

This is a sneak peek for those who love my books. This is for you. A few clues as to the characters and the plot.

Protagonist is a big word and it is the most important word in a book. It is the hero, the main character of the story.

Plot: This is the story, how it works out for the characters who are real in their own world inside the story.

I wanted the plot and the protagonist to be on the front cover. I think that is a reasonable exercise and way to promote the story to the reader, who is an intelligent being with feelings and needs like the protagonist in the story, or a human being with needs to get away from the hush and tumble of all their worries and bury their minds inside a book that gives them a breather for a while.

This is the story. This is what it does, or should do. If not, I have failed. I love my own stories but that is no reason to be proud as its success does not rely on my feelings or thoughts, it depends on yours, dear reader. This book should give you hope, faith and love. I hope in faith that it does. Thank you. Marie

This is a revision of my Five Golden Rings and a Diamond. It is a few years since I changed this cover, so now I am in this place. I loved this picture and it sent me the right vibe for my romantic couple within. It is a really heart warming fiction and I read it again (8+ hours) and I do love it. I wrote this in the first person and back in 2004, so it is nice to read it again. It is a little bit  realistic and a lot of fiction, but it works. It is a long read but takes you on a long journey across the seas and into another lifetime. We all seem to have chapters in our lives and this is one of those, with a ring as a circle of happiness that will never end. We all want that, a good life, a few ups and downs, overcoming the worst things and getting a happy ending. This book will help all of us to cope with our frail lives that seem to be getting cut short by the pandemic. It is a breath of fresh air for us to revive our hope. Not all men are bastards, bullies and arrogant. Some have great qualities and you will find them all in here.

This is a very fat book with lots of pages to have a long lasting read in bed, in your chair, on the deck. A relief for relaxation. If you love Ireland and Australia, this will fit your style.

Planet Poo: Now being revised.  I didn't have a copy of this book until today. If anyone thinks being a writer is a rich profession, I am afraid it is not quite so. Sometimes we have no money at all to spend on our own books, as we are men and women of a different goal in life. We need to write more than anything and money is a very poor second. (That is not a complaint, it is a fact) To make money on your books you need to be famous already and rich therefore before you begin. If you begin, it is an entirely different journey and making money needs to be on the back burner most of the time. If we get money, we spend it on our own books, so it goes back into the community and the economy. We do not hoard money, we hoard a few books! If we have talent, it is usually not recognized until we are pushing up daisies.... (sadly) So, do not be jealous of writers and their talents.

3 of my books arrived in print copies today. This is the one I have on Amazon. I have a revised copy ready to purchase proof copy, but I had never seen this actual book since CreateSpace got taken over and all my titles along with it. I was so distressed that I did not know where to begin with this process, as I had 28 books on CreateSpace and it was literally a nightmare revising and re-turning the wheels of time. During this Covid recession, I have literally had more time to get my brains together and to work on these again. Being older and slower is not always compensation for being wiser, but I found the resources within myself to do this over again. I tell you folks, being older, still enduring hot flushes every 30 minutes (20 years) is a huge mountain that I have to climb every day. If you are young, steel your heart to do the things you should do, as it definitely does not get better with age. My concentration is bout 50% of what it used to be, and my energy level is less than 50% of my prime. Sleeping is one of the most important aspects of coping. If I wake early, hot and flustered, I cool down and get back to sleep. This is something I decide to do and it seems to work at present. I know how weak and vulnerable I am to becoming too tired to do anything, so I take the precious early mornings to get the best sleep ins. It is quiet here then before traffic begins and the birds wake up.

now, I need to revise this inside and out and put it back on sale. Not a lot to do! Wish me luck.

This page is a sneak preview of what happens in the head of someone like me when designing a cover. You might get insights into the story here.

This was one idea I had for the cover of my new title, Quest & Crown, which will be published soon.

Why I rejected this cover:

It does not tell the story inside the book, only one minor part (crown), which is a sub plot.

Thic picture I did like a lot. I almost decided on it. But, then I thought it was too informative, too many sub issues that were not as important as others.

I tried to visualise the most hidden yet important theme rather than featuring characters therein. In some ways the secondary figures were not quite what I had created.  Rejected.

I decided this one was not showing the real picture inside, although it has elements I liked. It had two characters on its front, which was a better idea than several.

I also didn't like her bare midrif, which is not a theme of my story. (Although it comes close)

Rejected.

This cover had potential, but somehow it seemed crowded and although it had an element here that I did like, I felt it was just too much for the reader. Rejected.

There are several other covers I worked on, and many images manipulated. I managed to secure the images from Pixabay and another free site to play with them.

Playing with the images is such fun for me and I am sure many creators love it too. I am getting used to using layers and modifying each layer as necessary.

It is a long process and sometimes becomes tedious, but it is also a learning process.

I have a motto now, to try and try until you cry! It works. Then I finally make up my mind!

This picture brought me closer to the finish line. I am back to two characters and a few symbolic items including castle, horse, cape, feather, crown and protagonists. It is almost there.

In some ways these two protagonists are the story. They represent a man on a mission with integrity, speed and a serious flaw, a weakness for women. The women are more subtle and cunning, secretive yet they know things that he does not know. Also, the woman represents two or even three women in the story. This story is told from the man's perspective, which was so much fun to do. I hope I got him right!! Yikes! In some ways, I feel the male mind is more simple to comprehend than the female, but there are no doubt exceptions. This man is not. Read it soon when it is available. I need to read the proof this time before you get your mitts on it! Sorry.

Note all the layers I had to create in order to bring a cover to this stage? On the right of the cover pic. This is Elements Photoshop ( 2013) which is a super software to have and I must thank Photoshop for its creation. I have had a million hours of happiness working on this, despite its crashing sometimes!

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