Wednesday, October 31, 2007

That Covers It (& an SOS for technical help)

It’s exactly two years, today, since I started this blog.

(Although I must say, I think my second blog post was more entertaining.)

Now this blog serves as a reminder of just how much has happened over the past two years. Placed in one contest. Won another one. Multiple short story credits, several issues of Spinetingler. One book. Another book deal.

And now, the thing that makes it oh so real…

My cover.



I understand there are four blurbs on the back, but I don’t know which ones. My thanks to all my first readers.

"One absolute wallop of a novel. Not only does it make you want to know when Sandra Ruttan's next book is due, but when's the next flight to Canada… A totally mesmerizing narrative and a plot that literally burns off the page."
- Ken Bruen, Shamus Award-Winning Author of THE GUARDS

"A taut, crackling read with switch-blade pacing."
- Rick Mofina, internationally best-selling author of A PERFECT GRAVE

"Sandra Ruttan writes with utter ferocity. Twists and turns that stun and dialog that absolutely crackles with wit and authenticity. With each page, Ruttan delivers the goods. A nonstop chiller of a mystery that keeps you turning the pages."
- GREGG OLSEN, New York Times Bestselling Author of A WICKED SNOW

"Ruttan effortlessly brings to life a varied cast of complex characters. She writes with tremendous passion, honesty and skill. This is a story you will care about."
- Allan Guthrie, Edgar Nominated Author of KISS HER GOODBYE

"When we talk of the next generation of great crime fiction writers Sandra Ruttan's name is near the top of the list. WHAT BURNS WITHIN has a compelling clockwork plot that comes together with Swiss precision but it's the real, sympathetic and utterly human characters that infuse it with depth and power. WHAT BURNS WITHIN is a stunning book. Not only is this the start of a great series but more importantly it's the start of a long and successful career. Sandra Ruttan is one to watch."
- Brian Lindenmuth, Mysterybookspot

“WHAT BURNS WITHIN reads like a favorite television series. A large cast, lots of dialogue to advance the plot, a great setting, and well-drawn characters make for a compelling police procedural.”
- Anne Frasier, USA Today Bestselling Author of HUSH, SLEEP TIGHT & PLAY DEAD

I always do a rough mock-up for a cover, because it’s easier than trying to explain what you mean. Just show. And I’m very, very happy that the team at Dorchester went with the basic idea and made it their own, and did such a fantastic job. (I won't show my rough, because, well, the one they did is so much better!) In a bookstore, the only thing you’re guaranteed for shelf space is the spine of the book, so I really wanted the wrap around fire, and spine blurb, and got both.

That’s the other thing. Sometimes, covers try too hard and fail spectacularly. Far better to go with simple and effective, IMHO. I mean, I could point out some ugly covers just to prove the point, but that wouldn’t be nice.

And it’s a cover that doesn’t commit the cardinal cover sins. There’s no tree on the cover, and no recycled photo.

So three cheers for the team at Dorchester, who have done some wonderful covers for others…









And now, I get to see my book added to the list. Very, very cool.

Of course, we celebrate the covers, because they're more fun than editing...


Dedicated to MG. (Link courtesy of Russel.)

Technical Help
Does anyone know if it’s possible to have a file posted on a blog that people can download? A pdf or a word doc? I’m trying to deal with transitioning Spinetingler to a blog so that I can manage it myself, but this… this I can’t figure out how to do. And yes, I’m using blogger, in part because Wordpress doesn’t allow most functions with Safari and I really don’t have the time to learn a whole new blog system right now.

If you know how to do this, please feel free to e-mail…

22 comments:

Chris said...

Happy anniversary! And I love the cover. Brilliant, bringing hte artwork and blurb onto the spine. Congrats on all counts...

Sandra Ruttan said...

Thanks Chris. I am very happy with the cover!

James Goodman-Horror Writer said...

Yes, that cover is fantastic. Congrats all around.

Gregg Olsen said...

Love the cover! A winner! Congrats!

M. G. Tarquini said...

Beautiful cover, Sandra. Congratulations!

And I think I sprained something with that video. Thanks, I really needed a laugh. I'm supposed to be writing a comedy.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Congrats! Can't wait to read it.

M. G. Tarquini said...

Just realized we started our blogs about the same time...

How come you got so much more done?

RAC said...

On the tech question, I'm not aware of Blogger allowing file storage, BUT you could store all your Word docs on a free storage service like xdrive.com and copy the file links into the sidebar of your blog's template. Or make a directory/index page that you can update readily, and just list that link on your template. I'm not sure Google Docs is up to the task just yet of storing Word documents -- you can import docs but I found too many format oddities.

RAC said...

And I like your book cover, too! Are you going to post the back cover?

stevemosby said...

It looks good, Sandra: congratulations. :-)

And happy birthday too.

Sandra Ruttan said...

Hey, thanks James, Gregg, Patti, Steve!

RAC, interesting option. I may have to consider that. Thanks.

Mindy, probably not a fair question. You've got kids, for one thing! And you've moved house during that time, and had some other things come up. And you actually DID make first runner-up in a contest, and you actually DO have an agents, and you've had short stories published, so you're not so shabby!

Trace said...

Wonderful cover, Sandra! Wow!

Stephen Blackmoore said...

Blogger, sadly, doesn't support file uploads. Pictures are a different matter.

One thing you can do is host your file over on your Spinetingler domain and put a link to it on your blog.

It just needs to be in a folder that's accessible via the web.

Stephen Blackmoore said...

Oh, and the cover is fucking awesome. Congratulations.

Sandra Ruttan said...

Trace and Stephen, glad you like it!

I'm afraid I'm really techologically inept when it comes to website stuff. I need it all to be manageable for me, and maybe I'll just have to give up on doing a download version, or do what Richard suggested.

Austin Carr said...

Cover is very hot! And Clive Cussler...oh, my.

Sandra Ruttan said...

Ever think about your dream blurbers, "Austin"? I learned to stop, because many authors who inspired me don't blurb. I hate the whole fucking business of blurbs. I'm really just grateful to have the ones I do, and that the response was so enthusiastic.

Anonymous said...

Loving the cover birthday blogger. Wow your only twoyears old and look at what you've achieved!
On the techno side of things, your lucky i can even post this..
chel

anne frasier said...

amazing cover, sandra!!!

Daniel Hatadi said...

That is one hell of a solid cover. Very eye catching, especially from a distance.

I'll bet people will be walking away with two words in their head: BURNS RUTTAN. That is a very cool name. Let me say it again: BURNS RUTTAN.

But seriously, you could always post to Crimespace first, which allows file attachments, then add a link to the file on your other blog.

Sandra Ruttan said...

Chel, LOL. I hear ya!

Hey Anne, Lady of the Church! (Fingers crossed!)

Daniel, ha, Burns Ruttan.

Unfortunately, many will be thinking "Burns Ruhttin'."

KarenC said...

Sandra - love the covers - but as to incorporating documents if I was in your position I'd probably look whether googledocs will work (we use it all the time), or something like http://files-upload.com/

It would be polite to link to a PDF or similar, and not something raw Microsoft Word docs. Then you're not going to create havoc when others don't have exactly the right version of whatever proprietary application you've used to create them in the first place, or don't use that application at all (stunning as it may seem there are lots of us who don't use Microsoft products).

Feel free to drop me a line if you want a hand / have any questions.