#TGK #dark #violent #thriller
#TGK #dark #violent #thriller
I came up with the title of my novel, The Sea Trials of an Unfortunate Sailor, early on in its development and I have grown to love it as I have any other part of my existence, such as my left pinkie finger, my crooked nose, my restless and weary soul. However, after seven years since the book’s publishing, and despite the fond things that have been said and written about the story (and a few not-so fond things), I’m afraid it’s time for me to admit that my beloved title and book cover have failed in their efforts to attract new and varied readers.
Well, regardless whether it’s the fault of the title and cover or not, it had become glaringly evident to me a long while ago that some serious shaking up with the book was needed. It took me a while, but it has finally come time for the shaking to begin.
My rationale for changing the title – and the book cover, as well – is based upon a gut feeling I’ve had since not too long after the book was published: They were both too navy-centric in their words and imagery, which I suspect have turned off many readers who don’t prefer the military genre, a genre which I have never identified this book to be. I’ve always classified it as literary fiction and a psychological suspense novel.
While the story is certainly set within a military environment – a laid-up warship homeported out of Yokosuka, Japan – its story is not necessarily a military one. It, like most stories written from and of the soul, is a universal story. It is a story about our prejudices, our stereotypes, our identity. The stuff all humans struggle with frequently, regardless the setting they happen to be in.
As it is, the old title and the old book cover essentially scream to prospective readers that this is a military-centric book, and only that.
That being said, it is my pleasure to introduce to you the new title and the new cover for my old novel.
The new title, Inside the Skin, which is also the title of the story’s second chapter, is derived from the saying inside the skin of the ship, which is navy-speak for simply being or going inside the ship. But seeing how the story’s focus is on one’s identity and sexual orientation, the saying also makes a good metaphor for those themes, as well. We are who we are on the inside, regardless how anyone else wants to label us. As many of us know, one of the main aspects, and sometimes the hardest, of our journey through life is trying to find comfort within our own skin.
As for the book cover, I chose the image firstly because I think it looks cool. I also like how the chain link imagery speaks to the theme of the book – we are trapped within who we are whether we like it or not. It also reminds me of how sometimes it felt like being in a prison when out to sea for long periods of time. The amazing image used for the book cover comes courtesy of Ricardo Gomez Angel of UNSPLASH.COM. If you’d like, you can see it in its original form here. The font, “GOOD TIMES REGULAR,” is courtesy of Raymond Larabie of 1001FONTS.COM and can be seen here.
There is still some work for me to do – new ISBNs, updating the front matter, et cetera – so it will take several days before I begin to initiate the updates to all the various distributors, so you still have some time to get you a copy of the print edition with the old cover.
Hey, never know. It may be worth some money some day…
I guess I should add that I’ve made the ebook version permanently free everywhere (at least for the indefinite future). You can find links to all the various retailers on its About page.
Anyway, regardless whether or not you think the new title intriguing or the new book cover snazzy, I hope you find the story enjoyable because that is what matters most to me.
Hey! What’s up?! Long time no speak. Everyone surviving these bizarre times okay?
I must admit that I have grown accustomed to not blogging or socializing on the internet these past several months. Not that I haven’t missed you, it’s just nice to be engaged so heavily in the really real as opposed to the virtually real.
Well, I guess not all my time has been spent in the real real. Much of it has been spent in the imagined real as I’ve been chugging along on a new book.
Yes, I think I’ve finally found a novel-length story with lasting appeal, at least to me, that I may be able to bring to an end instead of just starting and sputtering out like so many others.
Which is why I’ve come to you today…
Kathy Cecala, an Indie Author and an active and valuable member of our private Facebook group for writers and readers, has some interesting and useful thoughts on the dark art of choosing and creating book covers. I strongly encourage you to check it and all the many other intriguing and compelling writing she has shared for us to read for free on her website.
And so is Christmas…
See Newsletter Love (008-15) to find out how you can get a free pre-release pdf version of the book personally inscribed by me to you.
Ho ho ho
I’m very happy to say that we have yet another submission to ponder over for Volume IV of the Indie Author Book Selection & Review. And by what I’ve seen of the book so far, it appears to be quite the submission, indeed. And I’m very very happy to say that this may not even be the last volume submission. I have it on good authority from Author Erica Miles that I just may receive yet one more book prior to August 8, 2015, our cutoff date for submissions to this volume. And if by chance it, or any other book submission for that matter, doesn’t make it by our cutoff date – no worries, we’ll just include for the next volume.
But regardless whether we get to check out Erica’s book in this volume or the next, you can check out what she has going on right now at authorericamilesblog.wordpress.com.
It is now my pleasure to present to you…
I’m always humbled and very appreciative of the kind notes and inscriptions you all write for me in the books you send my way. I wish I would have (because I certainly should have) mentioned it before. However, along with the book K.D. Rose sent me, I received not only a very nice hand-written note (handwriting is such a rare occurrence anymore that in and of itself deserves acknowledging), but also one very cool diddy of an inscription that goes a little like this:
You can say you got a masterpiece for free —
Then toss it in the garbage.
How Zen is that?!
– KD Rose
Oh yeah – very Zen.
So Zen, in fact, I shall clap in honor of its Zen-ness with one hand.
From the back cover:
It is half past dark and we are in a graveyard orbit. Travelers have lost their way. Mankind is hard of hearing. We have abandoned insight and revelation for commerce and merry-go-rounds of distraction. But wonder is still in the palm of our hand. Wisdom is everywhere when we pay attention. We hold the key to orchards in camouflage and we are charged with the task of taking vision and making it into reality–beyond anything that exists and beyond what others say can be done. Learning this is an absolute requirement to survival.
WHAT YOU DO NEXT, IS UP TO YOU.
All I have to say about that is…
Aesthetically speaking, HEAVY BAGS OF SOUL is a very eye-appealing book and there is a lot of mystery and intrigue going on with its cover; which is good because I suspect there is a lot of the same going on with its content, as well. Flipping through its pages I see poetry and stories and what looks to be asides of this and that. I can’t say for sure yet which book will be the selection for this volume but I can say for sure that this book has definitely captured my interest…
Stay tuned for K.D. Rose’s Guest Post — it’s gonna be a good one…
So, this book cover will probably change as I work through Part Two, but I just wanted to give you an idea where things are heading. I’ll begin posting new chapters to Part Two – still haven’t settled on a title for it yet – as I write them to my Wattpad account.
[And as I now see the cover in various poses, it’s obvious that the lettering will need some work as it’s hard to read in miniature. Anyway…it’s a start.]
In my view, it’s always pretty awesome around here, especially since we kicked off the Indie Author Book Selection & Review and Relating to Humans features a while back. But this week has been especially awesome. For this week we have witnessed the original thinking, compelling insight, and unique writing style of Indie Author Paul Xylinides with his essays TOTAL WAR OR TOTAL PEACE, a Relating to Humans Political Issues contribution, and Covered in Fish Oil and Honey while Sitting in a Public Toilet, his Guest Author contribution.
And it’s quite obvious to me, and empirically so, that you all think Paul’s essays are pretty awesome, too, judging by all the “Likes” you’ve given them, and the interesting comments you’ve left in response, and, especially, by all the page views they’ve received.
I must say, I wholeheartedly concur with your assessment.
Now, admittedly, I have an occasional tendency toward hyperbole, but you can take me at my word that, after reading Paul’s interesting essays, I was very excited to receive his book THE WILD HORSES OF HIROSHIMA, the IABS&R Volume 2 selection.
And so, it is with great pleasure that I present and proudly reveal to you Paul’s donation to me, his book THE WILD HORSES OF HIROSHIMA.
Continue reading “THE WILD HORSES OF HIROSHIMA – The Big Reveal!”