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Brandywine Valley Writers Group Meetup

Book Design with Ellie Searl

Thinking about what lies between the covers....


So there you are, writing a manuscript, intending to go indie. After the June BVWG meeting, maybe you've already got a cover in mind. But, c'mon: you're really a writer. You're focusing on the subject of the book, the brilliant insights or the can't-put-it-down story that you're telling. You're not thinking through the details about book formatting and design. Come to think of it, you might not even know there are details there to consider....

But there are, and book designer Ellie Searl is going to talk about about them. You can learn about formatting and design pitfalls to avoid as you work on your document (hmmm...should I hit the Enter key twice to put a bit of space between my paragraphs or should I put extra line spacing after my "normal" paragraph style?), as well as what a range of options you have in determining just what the book will look like when it’s completed and ready for market -- as an ebook, as a softcover book, even as a hardcover book. You'll learn about what you might want to do on your own, as well as what you might want to engage a book designer to do for you to create a book that reflects the distinctive story you're presenting to the world. 


Although meetings officially start at 7:00 pm, many of us show up early to have a meal and catch up with each other. You can also order food and drink (on your own tab) throughout the meeting. The program generally lasts approximately 75 minutes. However, people stay as long as they like after the official program and we sometimes close the place.

Officers of the group are currently:

    • Mark Mitchell - President
    • James Breslin - Vice President
    • Jurgen Flood - Treasurer
    • Wayne A. "Tony" Conaway - Program Coordinator
    • Ginny Beards - Secretary
    • Dick Lolla - Web Site Administrator

Please check the event schedule for information on the programs and for additional meeting content and locations. You can find additional information on our Facebook page and on our web site:

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  • Anne P.

    I loved Ellie's presentation, and her book cover designs reflect both a great talent and a level of thoughtfulness for her clients which goes beyond the usual business relationship. Since I am not a detail person, I felt relieved that there is someone to handle that part of the process when I get to that point. Now all I need is an editor, a PR person, and someone to ghost-write the rest of my book LOL. Seriously, I'm getting started tomorrow, as Ellie is becoming my writing partner and warden.

    1 · July 23, 2013

  • Kathy

    Excellent! Ellie is so talented and knowledgeable. Her book covers are gorgeous. It was very nice of her to put on a presentation for us.

    1 · July 17, 2013

  • Jorgen F.

    Great meeting, and very interesting presentation.

    1 · July 17, 2013

  • Ellie V. Searl - P.

    Thanks so much for the opportunity to speak to the writers group last evening. I hope each of you found something in my presentation to take away with you. A downloadable color pdf of the handout is available at my website. I look forward to upcoming meetings of this welcoming group.

    July 17, 2013

  • lorinda l.

    Unfortunately, I won't be able to attend, but fortunately I missed the pitchfork(sorry, love that kids book), but fortunately I'll be on vacation (and a family reunion). So see y'all in August.

    July 10, 2013

  • Anne P.

    We look forward to being there and to hearing the speaker!

    July 8, 2013

  • Ellie V. Searl - P.

    I look forward to the July meeting.

    July 7, 2013

  • Veronica Sarian R.

    The picture...I have a cleaning company. I can't wait to meet you guys but will be away this month. See you in August.

    July 7, 2013

  • John D.

    Can't make it this month, as I'm attending back-to-back cons, but I hope to see you in August. Have fun!

    July 2, 2013

  • Wayne Anthony C.

    Back when I was president of the BVWG, we didn't meet in the summer, because our meeting place wasn't air conditioned. This is much better - meeting at comfortable Ryan's Pub!

    July 2, 2013

  • Anne P.

    Ellie, we look forward to hearing of your adventures at the Iowa Workshop. I'm putting it on my dream list. Up till now, Iowa wasn't, but what do I know--I'm just a crass Easterner.

    June 13, 2013

  • Anne P.

    Sorry we won't be there, but happy we'll be out on the Chesapeake sailing for a previous ten days. We'll miss the experience and seeing you all.

    June 13, 2013

  • Ellie V. Searl - P.

    Sorry I can't attend this month. I'm at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival taking a couple of classes. Wonderful place. If you haven't gone, look into it. Perfect place for writers. Energizing, supportive, valuable. Great teachers.

    June 12, 2013

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