“Re-Cover” or “New Looks, Same Books!”

Eyes wide, everyone: You’re arrived at a stop on author Emerald Barnes’ blog tour! Her novellas “Read Me Dead” and “Piercing Through the Darkness” have received cover makeovers, and she’s eager to tell us why and show them off. The floor’s all yours, Emerald!

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Thanks for hosting me on your blog, Danielle!

People have been asking me why I decided to change my covers. It’s really a simple answer. It’s for the genre of the book.

I loved the old covers for both of my books. Honestly, I still love them, but they didn’t fit the covers of their genre well.

Read Me Dead -- "before".
Read Me Dead — “before”.

Read Me Dead’s old cover has a sad, young girl on it, and really, that’s what she is, but you couldn’t see her face. I like that we get to “see” what Alex looks like in the new cover, but it still holds that sad, young girl image. My cover artist, Najla Quamber, added in script in the back. That is important to the story, and I liked that subtle text added. She also added raindrops which is also important and in some important scenes. The story is dark, and I won’t lie about that. Alexia is a sad girl, and we wanted that to come across in the cover. It came across in the old cover as well, but I think the brown coloring of the old cover wasn’t “young adult” enough. Take a gander at the most popular young adult covers. It didn’t really “fit,” and I wanted it to fit and be eye-catching for that genre. I think we’ve succeeded for that.

Piercing Through the Darkness -- "before".
Piercing Through the Darkness — “before”.

Piercing Through the Darkness’ old cover focused more on the “antagonist” of the story. Which isn’t a bad thing necessarily, but I wanted the focus on Kandi, the girl whose life was torn apart when the accident happened. (Then again, if you’ve read the novel, you’ll know that even the antagonist isn’t really a usual antagonist.) But still, if you notice the young adult/new adult genre covers focus more on the females. I’m not sure why that is, but that is the case. The girl is bloody, and I think that’s what draws the eyes in. Why is she bloody? The old cover didn’t really draw us in with “whys” in my opinion. It could’ve be better, so we made it better.

I think this is another thing about being an Indie author that I love. If it turns out that our covers aren’t right, they can be changed, and this instance, although I loved the old covers and think they captured attention well, I eventually thought it could be better. 

Covers are the first thing that is seen. A book is judged by its cover, and it has to be appealing and eye-catching yet still capture the essence of your book. I think these new covers are just that for mine.

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Read Me Dead -- "after"!
Read Me Dead — “after”!

Alexia Wheaton’s problems go far beyond picking a dress and a date for the homecoming dance.

For seven years, Alex has lived with a painful memory – the memory of her parents’ horrific murder. As the sole witness, she has kept quiet about the identity of the murderer to protect herself and her family and friends, but when a journalist over hears her secret and writes about it in the local newspaper, Alex is plagued with fear that her parents’ murderer will soon find her – and silence her forever.

Alex is catapulted into a race against time to save her own life and bring her parents’ murderer to justice. She will face many secrets, lies, and betrayals before the truth about their murder is revealed.

“Read Me Dead” by Emerald Barnes on Ganxy

Piercing Through the Darkness -- "after"!
Piercing Through the Darkness — “after”!

It’s on the edge of her memory like a word on the tip of her tongue, but Kandi can’t remember what it is to save her life.

Despite being a cop, Jimmy can’t protect Kandi from the one thing that haunts her. She’s in danger and doesn’t even know it. After it happened, her brain repressed her memories of the accident, and now, she’s taking a Biology class under a man who wants to see her dead. The memories have started coming back, and it feels like she’s miles away from him. How can he protect her when she doesn’t even know she needs protecting?

Can these characters pierce their way through the darkness?

“Piercing Through the Darkness” by Emerald Barnes on Ganxy

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About Emerald Barnes:

Emerald Barnes 3

Emerald Barnes graduated with a B.A. in English with an emphasis on Creative Writing at Mississippi University for Women. She resides in a small town in Mississippi and has the accent to prove it.

She mainly writes suspense/thrillers in the YA genre, but she dabbles in other genres and her books are enjoyed by all ages! She’s constantly working on new novels and has more ideas than she knows what to do with. She blogs at emeraldbarnes.blogspot.com and ebarnes23.wordpress.com which takes up more of her time than she anticipates but loves it so very much! She’s also a volunteer at the World Literary Cafe which is so amazing!

She’s an auntie to two beautiful nieces and two handsome nephews (and another unknown gender coming by the end of 2013) who take up the other half of her time, but she couldn’t imagine spending her time in any other way!

She’s a Whovian, a little bit of a nerd, a reader, a writer, and a family-oriented person. God is number one in her life, and she thanks Him continuously for His love and favor.

Stay up to date with her at her Website, Twitter, and Facebook. You can also find her on Goodreads , Google+, and stay up to date with her releases on her Amazon Author Page

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For more stops on the tour visit: http://www.emeraldbarnes.us/on-tour.html

“Interesting” or “I Don’t Always Blog About This Stuff. But When I Do…”

Ever On Wordians, rejoice, for I have been nominated for a Liebster Blog Award by author/blogger/British person J.A. Belfield! You all know what that means. …Or, in case you don’t, here are the rules of acceptance:

* Answer the 11 questions provided.
* Create 11 questions for the next nominees to answer.
* Link back to the one who nominated you.
* Choose 11 people and link them in your post.
* Go to their page and tell them.
* No tag backs!

Now you all know what it means – a Q&A session of the most “arousing or holding the attention; absorbing” sort. ^-^

1. What is your favourite genre to read?

Are Robin Hood retellings a genre? Can we make it a genre? ‘Cause I could happily come up with more variations than my “Ballad of Allyn-a-Dale” trilogy! Or we could just throw everything I love into a single genre: Humorous YA murder mystery fantasy, with thieves. (Shoot, I should’ve thrown a murder mystery into the “Ballad” books; then they would have had it all!)

2. You’ve just won a competition and the prize is any pair of shoes in the world of your choice. Describe them.

Shoes, eh? Well, this is coming from the girl who’s worn the same sneakers almost every day for a year or more. But if we’re talking dream footwear… They’d be tall leather boots (brown or black) that could be slipped on and off without too much hassle (but not so easily that they’ll fly off when I don’t want them to!), provide excellent sole-cushioning and arch support, breathe well yet be reasonably waterproof, and which any pirate / ranger / outlaw / minstrel / knight would not be ashamed to wear as part of their epic ensemble. Oh, and they’d better be period for Elizabethan times, so I can wear them on the job at the Bristol Renaissance Faire.

3. Which fictional character would you most like to meet and why?

Only one?? But I would trade in half the real people I know for fictional ones! (What? No, none of you readers are in the “give away” half, don’t be silly.)

What’s called for, here, is a fictional character who gives me access to all the others (I’m such a user…-_-). A character who can somehow smuggle people across reality lines, and who’d be willing to do so for me without any deal-breaking strings attached. That rules out Rumplestiltskin from “Once Upon a Time”; sure, he’s my favorite of the series, but all of his magic comes with a price. (Besides, he’s a creeper.) And Aladdin’s genie goofs around too much (particularly since his release from the lamp downgraded him to only semi-phenomenal, nearly-cosmic power). Hmm… Aha! Maybe I should try Ms. Frizzle! Her magic school bus has done the impossible before! Alright, Friz, I’m taking my chances with you; get messy if you must, just don’t prove my choice a mistake.

4. The zombie apocalypse is upon us. Undead beings are beating at your door, slobbering over your freshly-cleaned patio windows, and you’re barricaded into your living room. Sticking to truth, what’s the most useful item you have to help you swing your way out of this somewhat precarious situation?

Do my kinemortophobic sobs do nothing to change their hearts? …Yeah, I thought not. Looks like my only weapon at this point is prayer. Lord, strike them down, or kill me before they can get me. Amen.

5. I’ll never understand why mashed potato is considered a signature dish for a certain chicken restaurant in the US, so if you couldn’t have both, but had to choose, which way would you swing? Chicken or mash?

I love potatoes, but if they’re mashed, I kinda need meat to go with ‘em. Come to that, I don’t like eating chicken without a side or two, either. Doggone it all! I’d probably just put off thinking about it until my family ate all the food, leaving me to pour a bowl of cold cereal. (This kind of thing happens all the time.)

6. What is your most favourite accent in the world *cough* British *cough*?

Heck yeah, British!

7. If you could visit any fictional land (created world/situation/etc) from any book of your choosing, which world/situation would choose to play witness to and why?

Hmm… I think I’d like to follow my tailor around during Book Three of “The Wilderhark Tales” (which, too bad for impatient me, won’t be out for months and months; but hey, Book One’s coming on May 31st!). Yeah, he’ll be kind of stressed out for most of it, but we’ll get to meet up with a lot of interesting people, and… okay, I’ll be honest, I would happily stalk him through pretty much any book, never mind what else is going on, because I love him more than is sensible.

8. Slippers or socks? No, they’re NOT the same!

Socks. Socks in my aforementioned sneakers, depending on where I’m expected to walk.

9. Favourite James Bond actor? Why, what’s so special about him, then?

I can name two, and I don’t care about either of them. Never got into Bond. Try casting the Most Interesting Man in the World, and maybe I’ll sit up and pay attention to the preview.

I don’t always watch James Bond movies. But when I do...
I don’t always watch James Bond movies.
But when I do…

10. Best (in your opinion) special effects for a werewolf film to date? (to the US folk out there, film = movie.  )

I only let you mock me because you’re a Brit, J.A. X)

I’ve seen two films with werewolves in them (we’ll count the whole “Twilight” franchise as one movie), and the werewolves in “Van Helsing”…weren’t the best part. So I’ve gotta give this one to the Quileute pack.

11. And last but not least: Head into your mobile (mobile = cell phone *snicker*) scroll through your ‘favourites’ list of numbers, find the number that you dial the most … Who is it? Can I have their number? ‘Cause they must be pretty cool if you ring them all the while, right?

What d’you mean I can’t have it?

Hmmm, okay then, how about: What topic are you’re planning to write (or blog) about next?

I’ve read British YA humour! I know what a mobile is! I’m not like the rest of these Yanks! You can tell, ‘cause I barely use my cell phone.

I don’t always use my mobile. But when I do...
I don’t always use my mobile. But when I do…

In any event, my next post will be a stop on somebody’s blog tour for their book. Who’s the somebody and what’s the book? Sorry, not telling! *singsongs* You’ll just have to wait and see-e-e. (:

I can tell you about a post coming up after that, though: The one where I list my 11 nominees for the Liebster Award, and give them some interesting questions for which I hope they’ll come up with interesting answers! Stay tuned, gentle reader – one of those nominees might just be you…

“What?” or “Writer Questions #2”

*** Stay tuned after this blog post for an important announcement! ***

The all-important questions: Why, where, when, what, and who?

For writers, there’s no right or wrong – only, for each, what’s true.

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What form do your stories take?

Do you write series-spanning novels? Short stories or flash fiction? Stage plays or screenplays? Songs or poetry? Graphic or comic art?

Do you stick predominantly with one form, or do you dabble in many? What is it that determines for you how your story should be told?

(Short novels are my favorite to write; some would consider them novellas or novelettes. A series is wonderful, if I can find enough plot to fill one; the more time spent with characters I’ve grown to love, the merrier! Short stories are great in between longer projects, and sometimes poems and songs just demand to be written. I try to let the individual story decide its own length and format. It’s not my job to rush it or to drag it out or to force a square story into a round hole, just to tell it the best that I can in as many or few words as it takes.)

* * *

What kinds of stories do you tell?

Do your words weave epic adventures? The comedies or tragedies of the everyday? Are your tales meant to thrill or horrify? Is it all leading up to true love’s kiss?

Do you write solidly in one genre? Did you perhaps start out that way, then slowly segue into another? Do you find that you tend to change genre from one story to the next? Do you like to genre blend, bend, or break? Do you even know what you’ve got on your hands until you’ve finished? – or did you think you knew what you had when you started, and by the end, you’ve got no idea?

(The closest thing my writing has to a constant is an element of fantasy. I’m pleased to make you laugh or cry; I may surprise myself by being scary; more often than not, I’ll try for a romance; and if a team of awesome people are on a deadline to save a world or two, so much the better. Other than that, I may be midway through a story before I realize what’s really going on, underneath whatever I was pretty sure I knew.)

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What do you do when your story defies words?

Is it something you can sketch or put to a melody without lyrics? Can you dance the emotion out? What if it has to stay inside of you? How do you handle it?

Is it a matter of trying? – just keep writing it, first one wrong way, then another, until you finally find the way that’s right? Or is it simply a matter of time? – set this story aside and write something else, until the day you feel you’re ready to give this patient tale its turn in the sun?

(These are questions I’m having to live with right now, sitting on a story that I’m not sure how to tell. It’s frustrating; agitating; depressing. Writing has become second nature for me, so why is this simple story so hard? Though I’ve moved onto another project for now, I hope I find my answers soon; a story stuck in your heart is a burden.)

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What about you, readers? What are your “what” answers? Share below!

*** And now, my important announcement is… that I have an important announcement that I can’t share, just yet! But know this: It is super exciting, and I will totally tell you all about it, after a few more pieces click into place. More to come soon… ***

suspense