Just a quick post to show off the new cover I made for the relaunch of The Ordinary Life of Emily P. Bates. I have taken it down off of Amazon temporarily so that I can do a final sweep for typos, update the back matter, upgrade the formatting and layout, and replace the cover.
Emily will always have a special place in my heart. It is loosely based on my own high school experience, my friends and insecurities, and the early romance I had with my high school sweetheart and current husband, Kevin.
I never had to deal with a pregnant mother, but Emily’s mother is based loosely on my own. And though Kevin’s hobbies tend toward music, electronics, and pool (not reading like Finn), his steadfast spirit is there on the page.
Re-reading Emily last month in preparation for this relaunch was like taking a trip through a time capsule. It was set in a very specific window of time (technologically speaking). In 2004 (when I was a junior in high school), no one had cell phones. Everyone had home phones and answering machines. And smart phones hadn’t even been invented yet, I don’t think. It was a time when we memorized our friends phone numbers, had to look up businesses in the yellow pages, and bought disposable cameras for documenting our lives.
Looking back, I don’t know how I survived without my Angry Birds and Google in my pocket. But we lived life large back then. It was amazing.
This book was conceived and written within the space of a month way back in 2008. At the time, I was working at a small, fairly shitty hotel that was not very popular. We got an average of 10 guests in an eight hour shift. That meant I had A TON of free time. And I used one month of that time to write the first draft of Emily.
I used it as my final in my novel writing class (I was in college at the time, working on my writing degree). Not to brag, but I totally got an A.
Then I spent a few weeks polishing my draft, and Bob’s your uncle. My first completed novel. I attempted to snag an agent with it, but only got a few form rejections for my trouble. I kind of forgot about it for a long time after that while I started my family.
Get it Done
Then, in 2016, I decided Emily wasn’t doing anybody any good just sitting on my computer, so I decided to self publish it. I got more than 400 downloads during a free promotion, and about $12 in royalties, and then… nothing. Straight crickets.
It was my own fault. I didn’t take marketing or authoring very seriously back then. I had a day job, two small children, and a million other things.
But that was then. Now I’m at a time in my life where I can take these things very seriously. So that means a do over for Emily. She’s got a gorgeous new cover, a fancy new layout, and now all I need is a few readers to give her their stamp of approval.
Let’s do this.