So, I started my research for an editor and a cover designer. Then I just kind of hit this wall. The sheer volume of different types of editors and pricing and the lists of different steps you need to take with each different one and just… everything. It sent me into kind of a tailspin. It was so overwhelming I just had to step away.

It is kind of stupid, I know. I also know that on some level this is part of my usual negative self talk and that nasty inner voice’s way of saying that this isn’t going to work out. I’m trying to ignore it, but that is always so much easier said than done.

One of the problems I’m running into is that, even though I think I have at least one editor I want to contact, I honestly don’t know what to say. They want a description of the project. I had one hell of a time even writing the blurb, I have no clue how to actually talk about the book. Part of that is I have this idea of how the book needs to come across to a reader and I don’t know how to talk about it without saying too much about the events that the emotional tone gets lost. I really want feedback from pretty much a blank slate perspective and I don’t know how to go about getting that.

The issue I have with the book cover designer is that I have a very specific idea of what I want in my head. I actually have two different ideas, one I like way better than the other. The problem is that I do NOT want any images used on my cover to be some random stock image that can appear on any other cover. Ideally, I really want that image to be one of mine. I consider myself an artist for crying out loud, but I don’t know how to do a damn cover. I want it to be clean and professional, but I don’t have enough confidence to be able to do that myself so I need someone to do that for me and I kind of hate that.

The biggest issue I’m having is grappling with how much to pay for either one of those. If I fully intended on this launching a long term writing career that would encompass multiple books, I don’t think it would matter. I would want this to be the absolute best it could be and I’d pay what I needed to to get it there to establish a solid, positive reputation. Since, in all reality, I will only ever have this ONE book, I can’t seem to justify spending a fortune on editing and cover design.

So now I’m floundering. We have a major home improvement (replacing EVERY window in the house) that will be starting in the next month. It feels stupidly selfish to spend yet another fortune on yet another hobby project that has a very real potential to not give me any real return on investment. But… this is kind of huge for me and I need to give it every possible chance I can. I’m just struggling hard core with finding a comfortable middle ground.

Author: TJ Fox

I am a slightly sane artist, amateur photographer, book addict, wife, mom and raging introvert. I have more hobbies than I can count, so it is beyond shocking that I manage to find time to do any of them, let alone most of them and still have time to do anything else. Of all the talents I claim, writing wasn’t one of them until my muse dropped the idea for a book on my head.

8 thoughts on “Overwhelmed”

  1. TJ – congratulations! That’s awesome that you finished your book and you’re onto the book cover! I love the photo in this post too. Can you sketch or photograph what you’re thinking for the cover? Or find a stock photo that’s similar just for example?
    As for all the windows being replaced – how wonderful but yikes! That’s so much chaos. Best of luck with it all!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The issue with the cover is that most cover artists will use stock images in their work. At least, most that are in a range that would make the cost even remotely reasonable. The problem with that is that you tend to see the same stock images on multiple covers. Sure there are design differences, but there is so much similarity between them that you can have a lot of confusion. I see it all the time when looking for new books to read. The other is that there is a chance (and not a small one either) that the rights to that image can be revoked at any time, forcing you do pull your book and reissue with a new cover design.

      As for using my own image, I don’t currently have one that fits my idea. I’ve considered attempting to take one, but I’m just not confident that what I take will look as clean or as professional as I’d really like. I will probably still try, but I’m just not that confident in the outcome.

      The window situation is just a mess on all sides. My house is only 14 years old and really shouldn’t need new windows. I’ve already replaced 9 and all but 2 of those are getting replaced along with all the rest. I’ll be glad when it is done as it hopefully means we have solved some problems and I no longer have to worry about one of my windows literally falling off my house (yes, that has happened).


      1. Oh gosh TJ! I hope the window situation gets done quickly! How scary to have a window fall out of your home! Yikes!
        As for the cover, aren’t you friendly with Jay who just wrote two books? I know his covers are originals and what he felt fit his books? Perhaps you can chat with him about your vision and see if he knows someone who would be able to help you or guide you? He’s a really great guy and he’s already published 2 books with covers. Just a thought…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I am not sure who you are referring to. I have followed a lot of people that do book reviews, but I’m not sure I’m following anyone that has published their own or been commercially published unless it is a big author.


  2. Congratulations on completing your book!
    I am not an expert. My advice is to set it aside and rest. Return to it and try to edit as much as possible yourself and make a representation of the cover you like.
    Join a “Meetup” group near you. There are several online places for self-publishing, also.
    Best wishes,

    Liked by 1 person

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