StephenHermer.com
Writing, Iguanas, and Electronics

Tom and Piper

I have been giving a lot of thought to the title of my "untitled middle-grade" adventure. I did not worry about it before; I always assumed the title would jump out at me as I wrote. Adventures for children, even older children, need to have a title that clearly tells them "Read me, I am exactly the kind of book you want." The original story was going to center on a male protagonist named Bill, but when it became an adventure for younger readers I felt I could write about a boy-girl team more effectively. A coworker suggested the name "Piper" for the girl, and...

Sunset Scene & Writing Update

Sunset Scene & Writing UpdateI placed my second order with the artist, and once again he did not disappoint. The illustration turned out much more cheerful than I expected, and it did not really match how I imagined the scene, but I was blown away nonetheless. To my eye, this is the kind of art that sells books to children and young teens. I am left with a dilemma, though. My book was really targeted at adults and young adults. By leaving out swearing, sex, and unnecessary violence, I thought I could appeal to a wider audience. I started reading adult science-fiction and fantasy at the age of twelve, and...

Artist Selected!

Artist Selected! I have selected an artist to work with! The winning entry is pictured here, and I was very happy with how it turned out. The centipede is larger and more menacing than I planned, clearly showing the danger. This artist uses an anime-like style to his work, which suits my taste and should make the illustrations appeal to a wider audien I will not post the losing entries because one of them was terrible. Well, terrible is probably unfair, but it appeared to be targeted at a pre-school audience. The other losing entry is quite good, so I will probably work with the artist...

Artist Contest

I have spent a few days looking at sample illustrations on a few online marketplaces where artists can be hired. I am planning on ordering chapter illustrations, so the artist I work with will need to be able to draw a basic scene from that chapter, then do it again for twelve to twenty more chapters. And perhaps as many as eight or ten books in the series. I may need a single artist to commit to creating two hundred illustrations, so hiring the right artist is critically important. Why a single artist? If I write a series of novels, I want the illustrations to be consistent...

Daily Writing Prompts

First, some news and updates. I will not have much time for blogging or working on my novels until early August so that this site will be inactive for most of July. I do have some plans for this time; however, and thought I would share them with you. I am starting to research book cover artists and will continue to look at the options through July. I do not have a title and will need a completed first draft to write the sales copy for a cover, so this is just research.  I am starting to search for an artist for the interior of my first fiction...

Writing vs. Dreaming

Writing vs. Dreaming     I wanted to follow up on the topic of index cards this week. I spent years struggling to write effectively, and it usually started well and died after a few pages. Why did this happen? I felt like I had an amazing story in my head, but when it came time to put it on paper it was broken and terrible. I decided to try outlining my novels, but I invariably ended up getting stuck because the process was the same series of "what comes next?" that I struggled with when writing without an outline. I already tried to explain this in the previous post, but it is such...