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From Writing Books, to Making Books…

21 Feb

wallstreetartbookcoverscolorado-real-estatedeathandtaxes

 

 

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 Writing Books to Making Books…

 

In college I used to hand sew my own books. I miss the assembly, but I think since then I’ve found something with the same satisfaction, and joy. Recently, I’ve been designing book covers for other writers and I love it. I’ve done a business book for an entrepreneur/CEO in California called Iron Ambition, an Art book for a very intriguing project where artists interview artists, based off the blog Thinking About Art by J.T… My own books, both Moonlight Manor and Feather Book Series, and then some sample covers for wall-street guru’s and real-estate tycoons…

By literally quitting my job, I have found a whole new avenue. After writing my first book, I knew that making and designing signs for the University in a tiny office with no windows, was not for me. Deciding to cut down on my hours at the University was a heavy decision, especially when I was on the cusp of getting a mortgage for our the house I had been remodeling for over two years. I lost the dream health coverage, and the security that the job brought, but what I’ve found is that in the two months since, I have built a career outside of that place, with little effort and all the talent I could give. 

I was wasting my talent at the University, literally flushing each great idea down the toilet, with no hope of advancement. When I first started there, I worked my tale off, but like most state jobs, you realize there is no point in being an over achiever beyond earning a lame slip of paper that says you are employee of the quarter (I was nominated twice and won once) After I won, I was a little bummed. Where did that get me? NOWHERE…

I feel that the freelance I am doing now is gratifying, self-fulfilling, and certainly more entertaining. I have my small office in the basement, it’s warm, cozy, my cat’s visit on a regular basis, and I can exercise, do laundry, bake bread, clean, and run errands while I send artwork to be approved and changed by my clients.

Freelance isn’t for everyone, I believe you really have to have the mind for it, and the talent. I work weekends, because I love to work, and the schedule is all mine. Being busy makes me feel alive, gets my blood pumping, and my mind out of the negative…

Needless to say, I love it, and I’m glad I made the leap, and took the chance.

And my mortgage got approved 😉

Abra

 

If you need or like any of the designs in this blog post, or are looking for layout of your own book, or design for business reasons, or other, feel free to contact me…

abra@featherbookseries.com

or find me on elance: HERE and review my portfolio


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Why We Say, “The Book Was Better”… Preparation For The Movie Release of InkHeart… Jan. 23rd

22 Jan

Due to the looming release of Inkheart, (in theatres tomorrow) I have decided to revisit and old post, in an attempt to prepare myself for the possibility, that the book really is better than the movie. However, I have been wronged in the past, i.e. Harry Potter, and so far the trailers for InkHeart seem extremely intriguing…

I think overall, movie makers did a good job on this one, it pays to have a good producer, something the creators of Twilight could certainly learn from…

Here it is…

Books will never be films, and films will never be books. In my film course in college, we did a whole section on this fact. Its simple, don’t ever expect, that after reading lord of the rings, that the movie will go page by page, scene by scene. This is the magic of books!

With a book, description is powerful, but also mind food. A description triggers our imagination to create the visual worlds based of the facts we are given. Books draw you into the word where YOU are the main character, you get the chance to live another life, and be somewhere new.

Not to say a movie does not accomplish this, movies can certainly take you places, but they leave you wishing it was you who was there, you as the ring-bearer, or seventeen year old wizard, or evil accountant…

“The forest was misty…”

that can mean a million things, a movie simply erases this… creativity is dead.

do you know that, “He leaned into my neck, his breath tickling my skin as he whispered my name…” is way more powerful than just merely seeing it…

Think about it…

But I‘m not knocking movies either, some BOOKS are better as a MOVIE… Harry Potter for example, movies were amazing and I found myself enjoying them more.

But I can’t hate anythings that’s entertaining 🙂

 

So, lets all go see the movie with an open heart, so to speak, and I’ll let you know the outcome. I’m judging this one especially hard, because it’s quite a novel, from the mind of an exceedingly imaginative writer…

Abra Ebner

Also On MobiPocket, Diesel Books, Kindle, and Barnes and Noble

Also On MobiPocket, Diesel Books, Kindle, and Barnes and Noble

Another Frosty Day in Dreamland…

18 Jan

img_7126I actually got out of the house today, granted it was my backyard, but the point is, I got out. Four squirrels were fighting over an apple in my apple trees, and getting up close, allowed me to see how beautiful the frost actually was. You just plum can’t see that from the window, so it was worth the trip. Believe it or not it’s actually sunny today as well, I suppose it’s just not quite warm enough.

I was pleased that my post on starting a book helped a lot of people out, I got some good comments. I’m currently reading a book by Author Brian Rathbone, The Dawning of Power, and it’s taking my mind into a different world, and it’s interesting how that world changes my views on things in real life. His world of Godsland is unique, but then also just like ours, making the events of his novel tangable, and fun. 

I actually encourage female readers out there to give the book a read. At first, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but then as I got into it, it turned out to be very personnable to the female reader. There’s no lack of horses, or otherwise, and so far, it’s very exciting…

Well, thats about all for today, just remember, Feather arrives in paperback in only 13 days! Reserve yours now

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What Makes Self-Publishing Happen?

15 Jan

 
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It Seems with the fall of commercial Publishers, there are more and more out there that are willing to put forth the effort and Self-Publish. I’ve written on this topic many times, but as a young ambitious writer, it’s fascinating to see it become a reality. For many of us, we struggle on a budget, but finding people or even family willing to support your efforts can really work. Here is one writers story, from an article I read in the New York Times by EDWIN MCDOWELL…

A Self-Publishing Budget

Evelyn Kaye, who had written 12 books, recently self-published ”Travel and Learn,” a guide to more than 1,000 study travel programs in the United States and abroad.

Ms. Kaye researched and wrote the book in six months, did the layout on her computer and paid a friend to design the cover. Then she paid to have 1,000 copies printed. ”I budgeted $5,000 for printing, design and postage,” Ms. Kaye said, ”and I’ve kept within that budget.”

To break even on the $23.95 book, she needs to sell just over 200 copies through the mail, or 400 copies in bookstores (which buy at discounts up to 50 percent), or a combination of the two. She said she already had orders for more than 210 copies.

”It’s hard work,” Ms. Kaye said. ”But there is great satisfaction in having control over everything about your book, from how many copies you print to what it looks like.”

She is a seasoned writer, with twelve books already under her sleeve, a painstaking road to getting her name out. But for writers who enjoy more than the profit, it’s just another luxury of finding what it is you contribute to this world. I find a lot of Self-Published writers struggling with the onset of price point, often finding that at 1000 copies, it’s hard to make a profit. Look at it this way, having your book out there, is better than anything. If you intend to share your story with the world, well, you’re doing it! It’s a slow snowball, that takes time to roll into the minds and hearts of all readers.

I am expecting my first run of “Feather” in about two weeks, and I am excited to be able to share it with my audience. Breaking even is the goal, because I believe my story will touch the hearts of all that read it, and perhaps change the mindsets of those expecting less from life.

I want to prove that Self-Publishing works, beyond the world of “Self Help”. There are so many authors out there, that can’t afford to wait for the expensive slow production of major houses, especially in the world of Fiction.

I believe Fantasy is at no loss for self-publishers though, purely based on stereotype, and I apologise. You don’t see many Chick Lit writers out there self publishing, there are the few, but not more than the world of Fantasy, the breeding ground of all computer nerds, including myself.

But back to the fall of major Publishers, it’s coming, and it’s only a matter of time. Already, my friend Brian Rathbone and I have challenged the world of EBook’s, making into the top three on MobiPocket for Fantasy. Both self Published, and both entrepreneurs in our own “write,” we’ve looped around the complicated path of submission and query.

Also from the same article…

The Biggest Paradox

Perhaps the biggest paradox is that at a time when commercial houses are investing a small fortune in money, time and energy trying to publish best sellers, self-published books – including some that were self-published and then bought by big publishers – are making the best-seller list with growing regularity.

Next week, for example, ”Life 101” (Prelude Press), a self-published book by John Roger and Peter McWilliams, will be No. 4 on the Advice, How-to and Miscellaneous list. And ”What Color Is Your Parachute?” by Richard N. Bolles, a guide for job seekers, has been on the Times best-seller list periodically for more than a decade; originally self-published, the Ten Speed Press edition has sold more than three million copies.

In the last year or so, a number of books that were initially self-published have become big best sellers, like ”Leadership Secrets of Attila the Hun” by Wess Roberts and ”The Book of Questions” by Gregory Stock, which was a best seller for 22 weeks (8 weeks at No. 1) and has sold more than a million copies in the Workman Publishing Company edition.

One of the biggest-selling hardcover books of the 1980’s, ”The One Minute Manager” by Kenneth Blanchard and Spencer Johnson, was self-published before the authors sold it to William Morrow & Company.

We have recently welcomed and endorsed Eckhart Tolle, one of the best examples of Self-Publishing success in the new age.

What makes it possible, is the highly networked world of today. People like you, whom have found this article across the lines of media and endless threads. Google, even Amazon help to spread the word, making self-made websites heavy hits, and blogs a fashionable hobby.

It seems the world has changed, and we rely on these changes to bring the voice of all people to a head. The freedom of Speech has never been so accessable, in a world of billions, where the other side of the earth no longer seems that far…

Thank you 🙂

Abra Ebner and Feather Book Series

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Final Feather Book Cover…

10 Jan

Here is the final cover in it’s entirety. Look for Feather soon, coming out on paperback January 31st, see website for details…

Final Cover

Final Cover

The Most Inspirational Place in the World…

26 Dec

       One of the most inspirational places in the world. The North Cascades. This is where I got the inspiration For Feather Book Series, both from a small secluded institute, the North Cascades Institute, and Stehekin, Wa. Stehekin is a small secluded community I have been traveling to since I was very small, I have four friends that were raised there, and it’s interesting to see how different their lives were from mine in Seattle. They had real wood stoves to cook on, no cars or gas, no TV. and a very small log school. The only way to get to Stehekin is by hiking in, boating the 55 miles, or flying in on the seaplane.

The Hut from the scene in "The Meadow"

The Hut from the scene in "The Meadow"

     The North Cascades institute is located on Diablo Lake, on Highway twenty through the North Cascades. The two places are close, but you would have to hike into Stehekin. The world out here moves slow, a world where the forests still rule, and we must succumb to their needs and desires.
       There is magic here, and I encourage you to check out my new Flickr Photo roll of pictures my family has collected over the years.

The Best Flash Website Ever! This is so cool! and it’s a game!

25 Dec

I was searching flash sites for my dads adventure company, showing him the possibility’s that are out there and I came across this site.

It’s like watching the latest Pixar flick, and I can’t get enough of it! It’s a game, where the outcome is your choice… who knew milk was so fun!

its the “Got Milk” advertising campaign. amazing!