Book Covers?

I’ve just been playing around with royalty free images today. Now, the main thing about these images is that you can’t use them for profit, although you can use them for many other things. I’m going to put one of my darker short stories on the free reads at Wattpad as soon as I figure out how to use it. You can add covers to the stories, so this is one I made from two of the images. Since it’s a free read I hope I won’t be breaking the royalty free rules.

You may remember this short story as ‘A Day in the Life of a Blogger’, but one thing I’ve learned doing this little experiment, is just how difficult it is to squeeze long titles on a cover, ha ha. So here is the  renamed shorter title ‘A Writer’s Blog’. I’m adding the story below for those who haven’t yet read it.

Writer's Blog

A Writer’s Blog

Spotting an interesting post from a new male blogger, I click on ‘Follow’. Just as the highlighted word changes to ‘Following’, I catch sight of his avatar photo. God! He looks like a criminal. Why did I click ‘follow’? Oh yes! I need to follow bloggers so they’ll follow me. At least that’s what I’ve come to understand. Anyway, I’d noticed he lived in the same county as me, that’s a bonus if you want me to follow you. Hey, but what if I’m following criminals, thugs, and every other wrong-doer?

My friend Jayne had warned me, “Be careful what personal information you put out there; you never know who’s looking at it.”

She doesn’t understand. To access some websites, you have to give more away than you want to. I begin to reconsider all the recent people I’ve followed and engaged with. Most of them have thanked me for following them, or ‘liked’ something I’ve done, but a few haven’t responded in any way. What are they waiting for? Why do they bother posting if they’re not going to respond when anyone shows an interest in their blog?

That last blogger I just followed is writing a Crime Thriller. He says he’s never written about murder before, and in his post, he was asking for help to enable him to visualise the scene. I’ve read the ‘comments’ to his post, and his reply to each contributor was always the same. “Sorry, this didn’t help.” No variation in his words at all. After nineteen helpful hints, he still wasn’t able to write about it accurately. Some of the suggestions put forward seemed really useful, to me at least. Oh well! I suppose you just can’t help some people.

I exit that page and move on to my notifications. Oh that’s good! Several new people are ‘following’ me and I have a fair amount of ‘likes’. There’s also a list of comments to reply to. I check out the websites of my new followers and add a few comments of my own. Then later, I go back to the growing list of messages I have to answer. I’m in the middle of the sixth one when the telephone rings in the hall.


No response, just silence.

I let out a sigh of frustration, and wish these irritating sales people would leave me alone; they’re always interrupting me when I’m busy with something. I knew it was one of them again, because there’s always a silence before their automated message starts. I don’t give them chance to get going on their sales pitch these days, just hang up as soon as I recognise the silent period. Since I’ve already been disturbed, I make my way to the kitchen for a mid-morning drink and then spend the next couple of hours doing a few chores. I also prepare a casserole, so now I can work a bit later and still enjoy a good meal when I’m finished.

Later, back on my computer, I finish replying to my blogging friends, and then start writing a new article.

“Ring ring” The telephone cuts into my creative thoughts again.


Once more, that annoying silence from the other end . Cursing, I replace the receiver in its cradle and in the same moment, hear a loud shattering crash from the kitchen. I freeze momentarily. Hell! That sounded like a window breaking… Tip-toeing from the hall, I cautiously head toward the kitchen. Oh no! The glass pane in the back-door has been smashed. Thousands of glittering pieces, like sparkles in sand, lay randomly scattered on the floor where they’ve landed. Now, I panic. I’m terrified. My heart jumps in my chest almost reaching my throat and I’m glued to the spot. I’m acutely aware of my awakened nerve endings, primed for flight.

Holding my breath, I listen… No sound now. I look frantically around… The door, thankfully, is still closed. Looking through the broken pane to the garden beyond, I can’t see anyone. Everything outside looks quiet… seems normal. Yet! Someone, or something, had broken the glass. Carefully avoiding stepping on the shimmering fragments, I slowly inch closer to the door… Is it still locked? Frantically checking behind me while drawing ever  nearer, I feel rather than see, the glass less door burst violently in with the propelling force of the intruder… He’s holding aloft the most frightening knife I’ve ever seen… Plunging it deep in my flesh, I recognise him. The horror on my face must be clear; it’s that criminal-looking blogger and he’s going to kill me. It’s crystal-clear now. There’s only one way he can see, and then write his murder scene.

(Copyright – Carole Parkes 2014



About caroleparkes

My husband calls me a butterfly because I flit from one hobby to another. Apart from being a wife for 52 years, a mother of three sons, and a grandmother, I'm also an author, genealogist, amateur artist, a lover of most needlecrafts, and occasional poet. Of the above, my most enduring interest has been writing and I hope to be doing it well into old age.
This entry was posted in Author, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to Book Covers?

  1. Pingback: Meet the Author, Doug Lafuze | Author -Carole Parkes

  2. Pingback: #Read about Guest #Author Doug Lafuze | Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

  3. Pingback: Co-authored Success | Author -Carole Parkes

  4. Doug says:

    I loved your short story! I had a feeling that I knew what was coming, but I was still shocked when he burst through the door. I hope that you don’t mind but I felt inspired to do a post from your killers point of view. My writing skills are no where near yours, but I hope I was able to do your post justice.


  5. Pingback: The View From The Other Side | Gardens, Combines, and Memories

  6. GREAT tale – had me going there because I thought at first it was something happening to YOU Carole 😀 😀 😀


  7. That was a real surprise, I thought it was going to be nothing. Very dark.

    As Leona says, you can get long titles on covers, one day in the life of Ivan Denisovitch came to mind. Plus the authors long name!


  8. betnew says:

    Excellent!! What a terrific story!


  9. Ya really know how to scare a person, Carole! Great suspense.


  10. orples says:

    Cool design, Carol. Kudos for a job well done. 🙂


  11. Leona says:

    Oh I forgot to mention, deviantart has a lot of royalty free images with no restrictions. Some of them even allow commercial use. Deviantart community is really great in that regard.

    It’s not difficult to squeeze long titles into the cover, there are tricks to it. Here is my blog post showing one:
    You don’t use the same font size for the initials as the rest of the word. For example you make the first letter of the word size 72 (could even be a different font altogether, as seen in the image on my post) and the rest of the word size 52. Small words should be all small letters & set to a much smaller size than the other words, and arranged in different ways depending on the title.

    It’s all about arrangements and making use of various spaces. I studied a lot of professional book cover designs (such as the NYT best sellers and some of my favorite books) and took notes. It came handy when it was time to try myself 🙂


    • caroleparkes says:

      Thank you for your helpful tips Leona, especially about deviantart; I’ll look into their site. I’m with you on keeping costs down by doing your own covers. My published book cover is from a painting I did. I hope to combine my art and free images for my future work. I wish you success with your book.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I am so sorry you’ve died on hands of a criminal blogger! LOL I loved the story 🙂


  13. sonya says:

    The story is brilliant! I like the cover, too.


  14. Leona says:

    Oh dear, you really fooled me there! That was good. That was really good! Wow. I follow a lot of blogs and I usually skip the stories if the first two lines don’t engage me. But this one was so real, you totally got me until the back door glass smashing scene. You have serious talent!


I'd love to hear your views.

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.