Burned. Sort of saw this coming.

Ebook Designs of Leeds, UK, bid on  doing the page layout, submission to LuLu, and a cover for $128! Too good to be true. Indeed, that’s how it turned out.  At first they said Anthon was sick. I left messages galore. And then eLance notified me Ebook Designs had requested to cancel the project. That sets things back a week. I left a note on their site I considered this extremely unprofessional. They get to keep their five-star rating because I can’t comment since we cancelled the project. Grrrr….

I found Ebook’s cover design on another site:


Chris will be designing our pages. I just wrote him:

Chris, my cover-design guy just flaked out so I’ve got to figure that out. I will see what I can whip up by myself. If that doesn’t work as an interim solution, I’m not sure what I’ll do. This cover will be short-lived; it’s still beta. The cleaned-up, professionally edited version will come out mid-November at the latest and by then the cover has to look professional.

There is no firm deadline on this but I’ve stopped making edits so I don’t want wait long to move the new version to Lulu.

I want you to do the best you can do on this, for it’s vital to the success of the project that the pages are convincing, easily readable, and well-designed. The design walks a thin line, on the one hand informal and me-to-you advice but on the other, a professional polish that positions the book as serious stuff.

Coming up with the right design should involve a bit of back-and-forth rather than you sending me a completed work. Maybe pick a chapter or bunch of pages from the middle of the book since the up-front stuff has kooky layouts. Send me that or scraps of that. Give me a few alternatives. I will give you immediate turnaround with my thoughts.

I admire designers. I’m a wannabe designer myself, with a dozen great books on the topic but not much practice. Sometimes it takes a day or two for the inspirational Aha! that unlocks the whole puzzle. I’m willing to sit on my hands for a few days to let you do your best.

You know I’m price-sensitive since this project is an experiment and it’s coming out of my own pocket. Nonetheless, I want to pay you what’s appropriate for your work. How about $250? That would include helping me out if I have any problems putting new content into InDesign. I don’t want to crash the design.

Think we can wrap this up within a week?

He replied we can do it.

Meanwhile, I’ve been struggling with images. First I want to get the proportions right. Then I’ll figure out what graphics programs it takes to manipulate them. Wonder what cover designers use. I’m looking over some attractive covers on books in my library. Ye gods, they vary all over the place. Author on top or bottom. Big title of little? Image of no image. Some colored some not. Author always set off in different color, different font.

Going to post potential covers on the net this evening, see what sort of response I get. Anyone with the link https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9JwAQ8oXQX-Qnl4UTZRWUZXWE0/view?usp=sharing can look at the choices. Or is that wise? Maybe we’ll keep that one private except for insiders.

Have I been a technophiliac? Over optimistic about what the net gives back? Probably. I shout out and don’t hear anything coming back over the waves. It’s depressing. Am I misreading the situation or are 80 people finding this boring? I have to keep reminding myself that these are not the right people for a field test. They’re not doing the exercises not should I expect them to. Unless they believe my growth claims.

Learned that I am not a book cover designer although it would be a fun skill to have. My favorite so far:

aha cover bulb