New Postcards

Oh, there's nothing more that makes my heart go thumpity-thump then when it comes time to order new postcards. Of all the little things I do, it's what makes me feel most like a published author. My first official postcard, below, was designed by the woman who did my website. She did a bang up job, but it cost me enough to realize it wasn't something I would be doing just for fun. When it was time for a new book to promote and to re-order, I almost sort of figured out who to use Photoshop for more than resizing images. I tweaked the design myself to feature my mug and Life Over Easy since it had just come out.

Around June or July, I realized I needed postcards for More Than This but was too overwhelmed to consider either trying my on hand at it. By that time I'd regressed back to my remedial Photoshop skills and I wasn't too eager to shell out a couple of hundred bucks to commission another design.

As it happens, I answer the phone (usually on the first or second ring) and one day, around that time, a nice lady called on behalf of of the online site I used to order postcards. Boy, did she have a deal for me. For about $50 I could get new postcards designed and get a deal on ordering them. I was bored, so I said sure. She asked me a few questions and a week later I was surprised to find a nicely designed postcard in my account, ready to be ordered. It was not exactly what I wanted, but close enough so that after a few tweaks of the text and images it served it's purpose even if it did end up looking a bit cluttered, below.

This past month I did three events and managed to go through most of what I had left of my stash of the three different postcard designs. Hurray! Usually, I can't give those things away...and that's what they're for. I have about 20 left and I know from experience that it's a good idea to have postcards handy to give to those few kind folks who are nice enough to ask for one when they find out what it is that I do with my time.

Since I'm going to be a three book author for the near future, I now needed a postcard which would carry me through this period. I called the handy 1-800 number, talked to a guy in what I'm assuming is the same call center in India from the first time. Some three weeks later, and late, I was very disappointed with what resulted from our conversation. The body of the card was the same green as the green on the bottom of the More Than This cover which was not anywhere on the card and the text was beyond confusing. The text issue was easy enough to fix, as was moving my author photo off the front but when I replaced it with the image of the MTT cover it just sort of blended in.

It was so not what I wanted that I had to call in to use one of three revise sessions that come with the design service to have it fixed. Even then, I spent way too much time tweaking it to have made the whole thing worth it. They'd based the card on one I'd been fiddling with so I basically paid for them to do a worse version of what I'd done myself. I didn't save the first botched version, but it was bad enough to make me realize that I'm better off doing it myself. And so I did, below. Since it's a very basic template, I couldn't add graphics, just text and images. But I got fancy with a text box and used it to make the line under my name and then nudged the box with my name so it looks like it was designed like a logo. It's nothing fancy, but neither am I. It has all three covers on it, some short words of praise and a tag line for each book. On the back I have more info on the books, me and my website. They're ordered and I hope they arrive in time for my next event on November 18th.

So unless something great happens, like MTT getting optioned, this is the card I'll be handing out until it comes time for me to try to incorporate four book cover images. And, yeah, I'll be designing it myself.

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