Thursday, June 7, 2012

Armchair BEA 2012: Beyond the Blog

Armchair BEA Day 4: Yet another topic I'm not sure how to cover because the prompt wasn't phrased so well. Option one: Share tips for getting beyond our blogs, like doing freelance writing, monetizing our blogs, and making connections outside the book blogging community. Option two: Share something fun about our blog/life that might not have anything to do with books.

Though I have done freelance writing of a sort (I wrote for my school newspaper for about two years) and I do monetize my blog so I can try to get together money for giveaways, option one isn't going to work for me. Option two it is!

Books and the English language itself aren't my only passions. I also have an interest in digital design and doing stuff on the computer; I took tech classes for two years and enjoyed them very much. As I'm sure is obvious, I created my banner, button, and the pictures I use to denote ratings in my reviews (DNF, 1 star, 2 star, etc. Speaking of which, I feel like redesigning them.). The books in my banner? I lined them up on my shelf, took the picture, and got to work in Photoshop.

I took all my best Photoshop creations with me on a flash drive just before I graduated, so here are a few of them for you to look at.

A fake magazine cover featuring Ke$ha that I had to create for a project:

An eye/stars combo I used as my background on the computer I used at school, though it looked better on the other computer than it does on here:

Three fake digital design business cards (the two with black boxes in them are blanking out my last name; the author that recently posted a reviewer's personal information is one I have had long-standing problems with and I don't feel comfortable putting my last name out there because of her):

A photo I took on a camping trip and then messed around with (my mother was not holding that knife, the fire was not that large, and that beer was not on fire either):

Finally, a mock cover I created for my manuscript using stock images from DeviantArt (the weakest of the pieces I've posted today, in my opinion):

As you may be able to tell from the title, it has to do with vampires. It seems to start off as your typical "girl meets vampire, vampires bites girl" story, but then the vampire asks the girl to marry him, she refuses by saying she'd have to be insane to marry him, and he takes that literally. While he's trying to break her, she accidentally makes a vow to a thirteen-year-old psychic that forces her to protect the child from all the monsters after her and she's got to deal with all the problems that come with being turned into a superhuman guardian against her will. It's fairly dark and I wrote my first draft of the novel when I was sixteen. I'm now on my fourth draft.

I'm not a master at using design programs and there are a lot of things I still can't do, but I'm happy with where my skill level is at and I love to play around. I've never really thought of doing commissions because I'm insecure about my abilities and the Photoshop software my computer has isn't the best. I'm not near as good as I want to be. Maybe one day.


  1. I think graphic design is a good skill for a blogger to have! I wish I were good at it. I'd make my blog look pretty.

  2. I'm with Liviania - and I love that mock cover!

  3. Awesome work! I really love the cover. I also like the computer background.

  4. Impressive work! Those business card designs really stand out.

  5. Your work looks wonderful. I suck at graphic design, give me a paintbrush and I am good though.

  6. Graphic design is such a useful skill! Great work. <3

  7. I'm totally intimidated by Photoshop. I make my husband do all my image editing, because I open up Photoshop, stare for a minute at all the different buttons and controls that I don't understand, close Photoshop, and eat chocolate. Your stuff looks great! Your computer background actually reminds me of the new Shatter Me cover - did you see that?

    Great post! Thanks for stopping by my Armchair BEA Beyond the Blog Post!

  8. There are a lot of bloggers who have side jobs based around this. Sophistikatied is my favorite because she created book covers/movie posters that looked just as good, if not better than the real thing! Keep working at it & you'll find your balance! Tattooed Books

  9. Your book cover is very nice! Blogs are a great way to practice your design skills.


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