Girl Incredible print version

Paperback cover of Girl Incredible by Patti Larsen

Girl Incredible from award-winning young adult author Patti Larsen, is now out in paperback.

I was thrilled to work on the custom interior design for this book!

Inspired by early reviews, I brainstormed a list of empowering words and typeset them in the script font from the cover to use as watermarks on the chapter start pages. We added in some illustration chapter starts (some illustrations pulled from the cover and some new), to complete over twenty different chapter starts for this design.

I am so happy with how this book turned out! Girl Incredible is available in paperback from amazon.

Here’s a sample of the design:

title page from paperback version of Girl Incredible by Patti Larsen

Chapter 1 start from Girl Incredible by Patti Larsen

Chapter 12 start from Girl Incredible by Patti Larsen

Chapter 25 start from Girl Incredible by Patti Larsen

Chapter 30 start from Girl Incredible by Patti Larsen

Author bio pages from Girl Incredible by Patti Larsen

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The Healing Harp

Sometimes, I work on non book-related projects, like this one for the Healing Harp Conference. In my spare time, I am a harp player. We have an active harp community in Nova Scotia, and this conference is one of many get-togethers we will have this year.

The organizer approached me to design a poster. This progressed to a poster, social media post and event cover image, as well as a little technical research and advice on electronic event registering software.

All the graphics were provided. The colors came from the presenting clinician’s logo, which I loved.

Healing Harp Conference Poster

Healing Harp Facebook event

Healing Harp facebook post

I also wrote marketing copy to go with the social media post graphics:

Join Harpist Cheryl Reid O’Hagan and The Nova Scotia Harp Ring as they present Clinician Laurence Marie in presentations and workshops on The Healing Harp, March 27 & 28 at St. John’s Anglican Church, 2187 Larry Uteck Boulevard, Halifax.

Laurence Marie, RN, BMus, CTHP, VAHT is a Certified Therapeutic Harp Practitioner & Vibroacoustic Harp Therapist. She is accredited with The National Standards Board for Therapeutic Musicians, The International Harp Therapy Program and The Vibroacoustic Harp Therapy Program. Laurence’s harp therapy practice, Harpsylon Therapies, is located in Moncton, New Brunswick.

On Friday, March 27, 7:00 – 8:30 PM, there will be a welcoming reception and a hands-on workshop covering the modes and songs used by harp therapists.

On Saturday, March 28, 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM, Laurence will be presenting the history and science of harp therapy, including case studies on the morning and also cover the use of modes and songs learned the evening before. In the afternoon, Laurence will introduce Vibroacoustic Therapy and will demonstrate, allowing each participant to feel its effects.

Cost is $50.00 for harpists and $40.00 for auditors/observers, payable at the door.

For more information and to pre-register, visit or call

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Girl Incredible

Girl Incredible cover ebook mockup

2015 started with exciting new book projects, and here’s the first. I had so much fun on this project and as I finish up design on the cover of the second book, I can’t wait to work on the rest of them!

So very different from anything Patti Larsen and I have done before, the original inspiration to communicate Kit’s unfailing optimism was girl power, superhero treatments and lots of sparkly stuff. During the creative process, I felt the need to explore the quirky side of Kit’s personality by incorporating hard crafted elements, and the branding for the series was born.

Patti plans multiple books in this series, spanning three years of Kit’s life. Patti and I have plans to subtly change the covers over time to reflect Kit’s aging.

Plans are also in the works for a print version ready for this spring.

Girl Incredible is now avaialble from amazon and other online retailers.

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Day 12: The Twelve Days of Author Goodies

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On the final day of Author Goodies, we’re talking design and layout advice…perfect if you need to format for e-book conversion or looking for tips when designing a cover.

E-book Formats and Formatting

Blog posts here at
The K.I.S.S. Principle

What is an e-book? Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

Working with Styles

Hidden Characters

Building a Table of Contents

Working with Images

Good articles by others:
A good high-level overview to e-book formats and approaches to making them from BubbleCow.

For those of you who are HTML and CSS savvy, here’s the guide from Guido Henkel.


Bitmap images

Vector images

Design Tips

By yours truly and featured earlier this year at Upgrade Your Story: 10 tips from a cover designer

The 6 Principles of Design from J6 Design in Australia.

From Graphic Design Theory: 50 Resources and Articles

Thank you so much for following The Twelve Days of Author Goodies!

If you’ve picked one thing that makes the business of writing easier for you, then I’m thrilled. I’d love to know what was most helpful to you, so please leave a comment below and let me know. Or did I miss something you were hoping to see here? What was it? I may feature it in an upcoming blog post.

The Twelve Days of Author Goodies

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Day 8: The Twelve Days of Author Goodies

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On the eighth day of Author Goodies, here’s some handy Photoshop actions.

What’s an action? Well, it’s a saved progression of steps that can run with the press of a button. Cool, right? I use actions to speed up my Photoshop work, whether using ones I’ve created or ones I’ve downloaded.

Actions are editable, so when I find an action I like, but it flattens the image, I look at the steps and delete the “merge layers” steps, so I can adjust as I need.

Here are some great Photoshop actions that might come in handy when creating your covers or marketing materials:
Photo Coloring 11 by iconmaker91

HDR Action on

Faux HDR Action on

10 Retro Actions from Spoon Graphic’s Blog. Also includes good instructions on how to run an action in Photoshop.

Lithprint Action by rawimage

Portrait Action by provity

Skin Glow Enhancement Action by iScarlett

Colorfull Action (sic) by IGotTheLook

Outer Space Action by Emanuele Feronato

Note: some of the actions on are .rar archive files. If your operating system doesn’t support expanding these files, you’ll need to search for and download an app to open them.

Looking for GIMP actions? GIMP refers to these as scripts. A quick google search of GIMP Scripts free will yield you lots of results.

Don’t know how to load a Photoshop Action? Here’s a link to good, step-by-step instructions.

Want to learn to create your own Photoshop actions? Here’s a good set of instructions.

The Twelve Days of Author Goodies

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Day 7: The Twelve Days of Author Goodies

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Happy New Year! On the seventh day of Author Goodies…free training, just in time for those New Year’s resolutions.

Creative Live

Creative Live started as a photography training site, but has branched out into other areas, like art and design and creative business courses. Creative Live offers live streaming of their courses for free. Anytime access to courses are for a fee.

Alison Courses

Alison Courses is a huge repository of diploma and non diploma courses in a range of topics including entrepreneurial skills, ebusiness and marketing, web development, Adobe software courses and personal development and soft skills.


Coursera offers post secondary level classes in multiple disciplines and languages. While they don’t offer author specific courses, there are many that could come in handy for research.


Tutvid is a youtube channel full of great Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Illustrator and other short tutorials. Need to learn how to do a particular design thing? Search for it here.

Jeff Witchel is an Adobe Certified Instructor and creates short video tutorials for Illustrator and InDesign.


Codecademy is a site where you can learn to code for free.

Not free, but: Canadian women looking to learn to code and feel they need an in-person experience should check out They occasionally offer online courses as well.


Youtube is my go to place for short tutorials on specific effects or processes. Whether you need GIMP, Photoshop, InDesign, Word or other tutorials, they are a search away. Here’s a beginner’s Photoshop search link for you.


Plearn offers both paid and free Photoshop tutorials as well as resources.


Not free, but: has some amazing beginning tutorials for Adobe software like InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator, called “Essentials”. A free trial period might be available. If you feel you need a basics course in something, sign up one of the one month packages. For $25 or $37.50 USD for a one month membership, it’s a good deal.

The Twelve Days of Author Goodies

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