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A Book in the Hand

If a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, then I reckon a book in the hand is worth ten on the web.

Yesterday will go down as a momentous day in Maison Longuet. It saw the delivery of my first EVER printed book. Now I've written four books and seen hundreds of print-out and eBook versions of them but NOTHING can compare to the feeling of holding your printed book in your hands.

It's an author proof so has a "Not for resale" strip across the cover. The author proof allows authors to see a physical copy of their book before putting the book on general release.

Once I overcame my raptures, I did a thorough inspection of the book and caught the following points:

1. The title looked flat and lacked impact so I've adjusted the font. It has changed from flat white to metallic silver with embossing which has added the dimension it was so sorely lacking.

2. The subtitle text was overly large and heavy so I reduced the size by 4pts.

3. In the original cover design the illustration continued onto the reverse but with a blacked out wash. In the printed version the back cover was black, so I lightened the wash considerably to allow the image to come through as you can see below.

4. The general consensus is that a matt cover works better for novels and biographies. I'm uncertain, I feel a gloss cover may work better on this book so I'm trying a glossy cover for my next author proof to make the definitive decision.

5. The chapters inside started immediately after the previous so a chapter could start on the left or right-hand page. I've changed this so that chapters always start on the right page. This increased the book from 52 pages to 58 pages - Vapours is a short anthology of stories I wrote to give free to my readers.

6. The page numbers are on the top of the page with my name and the book title. This makes the book top heavy, so I adjusted it so it now centres the page numbers at the bottom of the page.

I really want every book I create to be the best version it can be and going through this process with Vapours has taught me so much that I can replicate when I'm ready to publish House of Scarabs and Genesis.

So a day of extreme excitement and some good old learning - can't ask for much more.

Until next time

Hazel x

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