Updated: Jan 19
Back in 2012, I bit the bullet. I pressed the proverbial 'do or die'. I published my first book. Was it the great American novel? No. Was it a great novel. I mean... I thought so. Working at something improves craft, so I'm not the writer I was seven years ago. Yet, also, everything I've written from that debut to the present day has informed who I am as an author. What I write tomorrow will become the fabric of the future word crafter I'll become.
I've rebranded the DEAD TREES series more than once. I kept thinking 'with a different cover, it will sell better'. Well, let me tell you something. I knew zip, zero, nada about marketing and marketable covers and networking with other authors in similar-genres with similar-attitudes towards the industry. I've gotten better at that stuff now, and I've seen the direct correlation between publishing + marketing + networking to equal success. I couldn't just shove a book up on Amazon and hope for the best. There were authors who found success the wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am way, but I wasn't one of them. Far the hell from it.
So, I've rebranded the series once again. For the last damn time (she vows between clenched teeth). I didn't rewrite Dead Trees 1 and 2, aside from catching some grammar stuff and hiring out a new proofread. I could have rewritten them and made the more 'on point' with current hot apocalypse/dystopian trends, but that was time I wasn't spending writing new material and becoming that new 'tomorrow' writer with more experience.
Long story short, the fabulous Maria Spada designed a gorgeous cover which we used as the launching point for covers 1 and 2, now titled INVASION and LIFELINES, respectively. I picked up the torch on book 3 out of necessity, and Maria was kind enough to let me continue the branding she'd devised. And that original cover that served as the inspiration for the whole series became book 4... I was only planning to finish DT as a trilogy, but... well, best laid plans and all that.