Sunday, June 18, 2017

Interview with Children's Author Anne K. Edwards

Dominick and the Dragon is the first book by Anne K. Edwards in a series of their adventures. Anne writes in other genres, writing books as the ideas occur or are provided by her muse named Swamp Thingy. Anne lives on a small farm with her husband and a bunch of demanding felines.  Each one thinks she is his/her personal property as in ‘slave’.  Learning to speak cat isn’t easy but she has managed. 
Tell us about your book! What is it about and what inspired you to write it?
Dominick and the Dragon is the story of a little boy’s encounter with a hungry dragon and he has to outsmart the dragon to get home.  The inspiration came from the eternal question ‘What would happen if…?’ The reason for its being written is to show how a child might be able to solve a problem without an adult telling him/her what to do.
Tell us about your publishing process. What was it like? Did you go indie or the traditional way?
I chose the indie route to put this book out though I am happily published by an Internet small press in the traditional manner also. This press doesn’t publish children’s books of the type I write. I did investigate the guidelines for submission of a few presses that accept submissions of this genre, but they say if a book doesn’t meet their guidelines, it will automatically be rejected.  That is understandable as most presses want some conformity, but my stories are not written to those standards. This story is shorter than their acceptable word length. The whole action takes only a few hours at most.  Knowing this, I decided to try indie publishing.  With the knowledgeable guidance of a dear friend, Dominick and the Dragon slowly found its way to Amazon Kindle.
How did you choose the title for your book? Did it come to you right away, before you started writing it, or did it come later?
The title came along with the plot and I never considered anything else.  It may sound strange, but I usually have the title and ending at the same time I begin to write the story. Once in a while I find I need to change it because the title is used by several other authors for their stories.  One can’t copyright a title, but I do try for titles that aren’t used too much. 
Tell us about the cover design process. Did you have a basic idea of what your book cover would be like?
No.  What I have found is the artists for my books can put my story into pictures much better and that includes the cover.  For this book the artist choose the places for the pictures, producing much better pictures than I could suggest.  I do have a say for changes, but don’t try to make many.  They may suggest a cover and usually they are right. I was exceptionally lucky in the artist who did the artwork for this book.
Who is your cover designer and how did you find him/her?
The artist who did the cover for Dominick and the Dragon is Lewis Francisco. We met when he stopped by our farm to ask about metal detecting in our fields. We got to talking about mutual interests and he told me he was an artist with an interest in doing artwork for a child’s book.  I took the opportunity to offer him a copy of the dragon story that I had written and not found an artist for.  The story was stuffed in a drawer and nearly forgotten. He produced the great artwork you find in the book on first effort.
How was your experience working with the designer?
Great! He is very flexible and as you can see, very talented. I would love to have him do others, but his work has taken him in a different direction.
What has been the readers’ response to your cover?
The response has been very favorable.  The cover has the two main characters on it and readers love the artist’s work.
What tips would you give to authors who are looking for a cover designer?
This is a question with more than one answer.  A cover designer considers themselves more than an artist, I believe.  And most traditional publishers have their own artists they use.  Some will give the author a chance for input and some don’t. But, for the author looking for an artist, I’d recommend they contact other authors in their genre for recommendations and perhaps tips on how to go approach an artist they want.  Also, this depends on the author’s budget.  Budget often has a strong influence on what artist one may hire.  Remember our books don’t always give back what is paid out when all the expenses are added up.
Anything else you’d like to say about your book?
Only that I had a lot of fun in writing it and a great deal of pleasure in seeing it published..

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