Cover experience, part 1

Okay all, here’s my experience so far with Damonza. First, I’d thought to make this one big description of what I learned as well as a mini-review of the company. However, I think that was wishful thinking or perhaps unrealistic expectations on my part. (I often find myself engaged in expectations which are, in fact, unrealistic.)

Biggest lesson thus far: Specificity, friends. Be very clear and very specific about what you want. Leave no room for interpretation or misunderstanding if you know exactly what you want. Why do I say this, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you. I have a habit of beating around the bush, if you will, with regards to anything that could at all be construed as criticism. Even if no criticism was intended. I add in “nice” words and phrases, or the occasional emoji should the situation allow it, to soften what may be read as harsh, even if it could be interpreted as harsh in the wrong light. I am so very, very fearful of hurting someone’s feelings, especially when it comes to an artistic pursuit. I think it’s because I understand that what we put out there as creatives is a part of us and rejecting or finding fault in our work is like finding fault in us. (have I mentioned I am an over-thinker?)

Beating around the bush, as it were, is not a feelings-sparing activity in an instance such as this. All it did was require more emails to correct the misunderstandings I allowed to bloom because of my own fears. It cost not only me, but the artist more time, which as we know equates to money. So, in trying to spare feelings, I may have cost him/her money and possibly delayed another artist their service. Bad, bad, me. So, again, specificity.

Next, allow time for the process. I thought, “three weeks, tops.” *insert naïve eye-roll emoji here* I submitted my application and paid the down payment to the site on 3/30. No one has been slacking. Both Damonza and I have been working on this project and it is taking time. The lesson: be realistic about time frames. Granted, I had no idea what I wanted on the cover aside from saying “something with a butterfly? too cheesy?” helpful, I know. This may have extended the amount of time it took to get the proposals, but maybe not. The site says to allow 2 weeks and they got it back to me just under that time-frame. *side note: they took that vague non-answer I gave them and a description of my book and came up with a cover I love.

Final lesson to this point: Research! I plan to publish through KDP (CreateSpace is now with Amazon). I thought I could get my book printed as a hardback through this forum and ordered dustjackets from Damonza. I paid for dustjackets. KDP does NOT print hardback books at this time. Ingram Spark does, but it’s looking like I can’t have my literary cake and hardback too. I have more research on this, though and will update you as soon as I know or learn another lesson the hard way.

Thanks for reading,

J.D. Caren

Through the Darkness: A Grim Delights Novel, Coming Soon!

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