On Writing & Publishing by Robin D. Owens

Personal notes on writing techniques, writing a novel, my writing career and threading your way through publishing a book.

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Location: Denver, United States

RITA Award Winning Author -- that's like the Oscar, folks! Futuristic/Fantasy Romance and Fantasy with Romantic Subplots.

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Saturday, June 11, 2005

Heart Thief Cover (2nd from left)

For me one of the most wonderful things in publishing is getting the cover art for my book. It's second only to having the book in my hands. I was in England when I heard my agent got Heart Thief's cover flat. "Well what does it look like?" I asked. "Like a big book!" (single element instead of a clinch). As soon as I got home I searched for the cover in my mail, to no avail (yes, I know that rhymes, but I have a full day ahead of me, so I can't edit this three times...). It had been sent to the wrong author (Catherine Coulter, though Catherine Coulter and I don't write anything like each other, and she is a Big Name.)

When I finally got the cover flat, I was a little apprehensive. The metallic silver was great, but the lettering is tough to read. As you can see, it's the hardest to post on the web. I called my editor. I LOVE the silver metallic," I said (because it reflects something in the book – sorry full of bad wording today). "But," I said. "There's no big, green heart in the book, shouldn't I write one in?" My editor laughed. "Oh, no, that's not necessary!"

Yes, it is necessary. I hate when the cover doesn't have anything to do with the book, so I wrote it in. Here's the thing. All through the book, Ruis, the hero, is accused of stealing a valuable, beautiful, emerald necklace. He's banished because of it, death for him to stay in the city (Druida). But near the end of the book he makes a gift for my heroine.

"When the gyro-atom was inserted into the crystal, the heart would glow and sparkle with energy. It would make the T'Birch emeralds look like cheap glass. Ruis grinned."

To me, through the use of this symbol, this moment of the book became a level deeper than it had been.

Moral of the story: Making changes to your book, no matter for what reason, like including the cover, can improve your book.

Another note. I don't have a correct cover flat for Heart Thief. Between the time I got the cover flats and the book was printed, my editor had done something wonderful for me. She'd gotten Jayne Ann Krentz (who writes wonderful futuristic/fantasies as Jayne Castle) to give me a long, beautiful quote that went on the front cover.

JAYNE ANN KRENTZ: I loved HEART THIEF! This is what futuristic romance is all about. Robin D. Owens writes the kind of futuristic romance we've all been waiting to read; certainly the kind that I've been waiting for. She provides a wonderful, gripping mix of passion, exotic futuristic settings and edgy suspense. If you've been waiting for someone to do futuristic romance right, you're in luck, Robin D. Owens is the author for you.

Excerpts of Heart Thief are on my READS page of my website, and a full chapter can be accessed here: http://robindowens.com/reads/heartthief.htm

Love to all,


Blogger MMVZ said...

As a reader I can say that sometimes I buy a book because the cover intrigues me and I hate it when it has nothing to do with the content. I find it dishonest, like when they try to confuse you between one on-going series and a new one. Thanks for refusing to go along with that. Marina

1:41 PM  
Anonymous Cyn said...

Personally, I love your covers for the Heart series. The fact you added more to help make the cover reflect the story is not only wonderful but commendable.

Have I mentioned I'm waiting for the Run On Sentence clinic? I try not to have any, so hearing there might be a reason for one has me intrigued!

6:04 PM  

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