Sunday, February 20, 2022

Cover Art (Day 20)

Today I am cheating, but I can rules-lawyer my way into this post. Technically, the sales copy is part of the paperback spread, so it counts as cover art, right?

In any case, I have to turn in the sales copy for a different book (The Chaos Nexus, which is book three in the Jackpot Drift series) this week, so that's what I've been working on for the last hour. (I also adjusted the spine width and uploaded the paperback of Dragon Freehold, so I still managed to use InDesign today.)

Anyhow, sales copy is... It's getting easier to write. I can't swear I'm getting better at it, but at least I don't bang my head against the desk as much.

This is the first draft:

At the edge of the universe, the colony of Jackpot Drift embraces high clan trying to escape, low clan trying to get by, and bickering AIs with nowhere else to go. Also in the mix — competing gods, the newly created flitterkin, and homicidal sheep. Who wouldn’t want to live there?

Nanite technician Sil Tailingstown controls — mostly — the god of chaos. She and the other colonists race to make the planet self-sufficient, just in case the powers that be decide the universe would be safer without Jackpot Drift. Not an easy task when terraforming stopped after one valley and the last governor diverted available resources.

But getting cut off might not be their worst problem…

For a space western with a different kind of wilderness, grab The Chaos Nexus. Welcome back to Jackpot Drift!

Now, when I say "first draft", I mean "I just wrote this and haven't even read it over yet", so this is by no means ready to go on the back cover.

So here are my initial thoughts:

  • The first paragraph has what I want it to say, but it's really wordy. I think it will be okay after I punch it up (which is easier said than done).

  • The second paragraph is all over the place. There's way too much about the history of the colony and not enough about the present conflict. It definitely needs a bunch of work. Ideally, this is the paragraph that makes the reader want to hang out with Sil. This paragraph does not yet do that.

  • The third paragraph... meh, it could work, but only if the second paragraph sets it up better. I'll give it a provisional "okay" until I fix the second paragraph and look at them together. 

  • The fourth paragraph... "wilderness" just isn't working there. That sentence needs to be revisited.
So there we have it. Four paragraphs and I'm not happy with any of them. But it's easier to edit something on the page than write the first draft. Fingers crossed I make this better by tomorrow.

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