I have continually made changes to Aundes Aura since its release. Firstly, these changes haven't touched the story, or even the words in the story. Everyone reads the same thing when they read Aundes Aura.
Some authors are okay with editing their story after it's published, but Aundes Aura is good enough (based on reviews) and I'd prefer to focus on future books.
Here are two reasons for the changes I've made:
- Improve the look
- Make it cohesive with the upcoming books in the series
Here is a list of the changes I've made over time, mainly involving the paperback:
- Changed font from Garamond to Cardo.
- Removed drop caps, instead capitalising first three words.
- Chapter headings are still all caps but the first letter of each word is bigger.
- Headings for acknowledgements and "about the author" now resemble the chapter headings, but smaller.
- Added a note opposite the map letting the reader know about the Pronunciation Guide at the back of the book.
- Switched glossy cover to matte.
- Changed font from Cardo to Minion Pro.
- Had the font changed on the cover, so it now has the same font that will be on the next book, Knives in the Shadows.
I haven't made any changes for a long time now, but there is one more I intend to implement before the next book is finished. Aundes Aura will most likely be getting chapter titles. So instead of the heading "Chapter One" you'd see "The Exciting Beginning" or something like that.
I have to do this with Knives in the Shadows as well, because at the moment it has "Luka", "Nemain" or "Raste" or "Sateia" as the chapter headings, like A Game of Thrones. Which is nice because I'd like to evoke A Game of Thrones, but uniformity within my series is more important.
It took some time to decide on having chapter titles as opposed to having just names or the chapter numbers. I had to weigh up the benefits and drawbacks.
Chapter numbers allowed me to have the same character in successive chapters, or switch characters mid-chapter. It also gives me the freedom to switch to any character I want within reason. Drawback: When you see the number of chapters in the book it doesn't seem like a satisfying length. Yet Knives is much longer than Aundes Aura and it has fewer chapters.
Character names as chapter headings felt more like A Game of Thrones . . . and that's it. Drawbacks: Locks me into a character for the entire chapter. This meant switching characters often made for a short chapter (though most of the chapters were quite long -- thus its being longer than Aundes Aura). I'm obliged to switch character every chapter. Because of all this I had to be extra careful with my planning and give special attention to the timeline.
Chapter titles come with all the benefits of chapter numbers, but they don't have the drawback.
Benefits: Cool chapter titles. You can switch character mid-chapter. You can have the same character in successive chapters. You can jump to a secondary character on the other side of the kingdom for a chapter. You can branch out into other characters you might see more of.
I can't think of any annoying drawbacks.
So I've decided, all books in The Válkia Chronicles will have titled chapters.
This should be the last change I make to Aundes Aura. Anyone with a paperback copy right now has a unique version. Like the classic version of A Game of Thrones, or the painted cover art of Magician before the gold book came out. But once Knives in the Shadows is published, the format of the series will be final. (As much as possible.)