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Messages - Lou Holsten

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Are there good online courses for writing fiction?
« on: December 07, 2015, 03:54:06 pm »
Udemy courses go on major sales, all the time. I got a course called "How To Become a Bestselling Author on Amazon Kindle" for free (listed as $297) and when I signed up, I now get tons of emails and it appears that all the classes are majorly discounted all the time. They even go on sale via groupon for $5. I won't lie and tell you that I've actually completed a course...but I definitely don't think that these online courses are worth more than the $5-10 bucks...ymmv

Mel speaks the truth. When I first discovered Udemy I was intimidated by the prices as well, but I bit the bullet. Luckily the course I signed up for (not writing related) was only $20. Since then I get an email every couple weeks telling me that all of their courses are on sale for $10 or $15. So, if you're really interested in the course, I'd signup as a member to Udemy and get the newsletter and just wait until they have another site-wide sale.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: NaNoWriMo: Good luck!
« on: November 01, 2014, 06:17:55 pm »
Was able to get in 1728 words during my son's nap. Going to try to squeeze in a few more later tonight. Nice to know that I've at least reached the minimum on day one of my first NaNo.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: I've signed up for Nanowrimo!
« on: October 23, 2014, 04:08:05 pm »
I'm in. My username is Lou Holsten.

This'll be my first NaNoWriMo. And I'll be working on my first novel. First anything, really. It's book one of a YA sci-fi series.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: My New Fantasy Series Covers
« on: October 03, 2014, 04:08:39 pm »
Thanks, Yeah, I think something more in line with what you did would definitely bring out the subtitle and artwork

I’m glad you found this useful. Again, the fonts are just basic and used to test out readability. The point of this is that if you like this direction, instead of explaining it to your cover artist/layout person and crossing your fingers, you can just say “Here. Play around with this sort of layout. I want the text to be legible when scaled down and I don’t want the center artwork covered up.”

Font notwithstanding, I do like these changes. I wish I knew how to do what you've done. I'd like to play with the text and the size of my author name on my cover.

I highly suggest that when you work with a cover artist/layout designer you request the production file. They’ll probably be working in Photoshop, Illustrator, and/or InDesign. You do this so that you have something in which you can play around with, with all elements (text and art) on their own separate layer. That way, you can move and scale your text easily without worrying about the artwork. To do that you’d just need to learn how to use the text tool and move/transform tools. Adobe actually released Photoshop CS2 for free and it’s still very usable. If you want an up-to-date version, Adobe has the Creative Cloud subscription service where you play a low fee of $19/month for one App or $49/month for the complete suite. So just pay for one month, make your changes and cancel afterwards if you want.

What I did with Mark’s isn’t something you’d do for your finished cover. I literally just went in and painted out the text, and copied some sections around to cover things up. At such a small scale it looks okay, but full-res it’ll look like crap.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Want an Ello invite?
« on: October 03, 2014, 09:27:15 am »
Same here. I'd love to check it out as well. If anyone has an extra invite they can throw my way, that'd be fantastic. Thank you!

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Introductions & Welcomes / Re: Hi Kboarders
« on: October 03, 2014, 09:08:55 am »
Thanks for the warm welcome, everyone :)

Mel - just go for it! At least brainstorm ideas and list scenarios. If you have something you think would be cool, before spending too much time on it, just write down some thoughts on the story in a bulleted list. If you find yourself continually, and easily, adding to that story's list -- if this happens, then that, which leads to this, Oh, that's cool, and then this can happen, etc -- you'll get even more psyched up about it and you'll have some stuff to start playing around with. Most important part is to have fun!

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Writers' Cafe / Re: My New Fantasy Series Covers
« on: October 03, 2014, 08:49:53 am »
Hey Mark - Great cover illustrations! As mentioned, the subtitle is really hard to read, and the font doesn't pair that well with the title logo. And I understand the desire to have your name big on the covers, but it's unfortunately taking away from the artwork and is a little distracting -- to me at least. I thought I'd just do a quick paintover to show a different layout option. The subtitle font can be disregarded, I just grabbed something fast that was easy to read. Hope this helps.

Original on the left Paintover on the right.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: During October I will : (fill in the blank)
« on: October 01, 2014, 06:47:09 pm »
  • Brainstorming
  • Outline my first novel
  • Psyching myself up for NaNoWriMo

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Introductions & Welcomes / Hi Kboarders
« on: October 01, 2014, 04:33:03 pm »
Hey everyone! This is my first post, but I've been lurking for a while. Just soaking in all the juicy knowledge this place contains.

Quick bio: Newish to writing, but not to story creation. I've spent most of my professional life working as an artist. Worked as both a 3D artist and UI designer in the game industry (Rock Band, Fable 2, Borderlands, and more). I've also done some comic book work (nothing notable), and some storyboarding (project for Zynga). I discovered that I really loved the world-building and character creation process a few years ago during a comic book brainstorming session with a friend.

Since then I've consumed numerous books on the craft of writing. I just never actually sat down to write. I just never felt prepared enough. But screw that! There's a bunch of stories that have been percolating in the ol' noggin for a while now that I've been dying to work on. I've been waking up every morning at 5AM this last month. I'm figuring out my story, fleshing out my characters, writing my outline, and having a blast! Wish I stopped being so afraid and started doing this years ago.

Well that's me. Oh, and I plan to tackle NaNoWriMo next month, so wish me luck :)

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