I was given the opportunity to do two different angel PNR covers back to back. The first was Odessa Black’s Black Soul. Odessa and I chatted a bit about her story. She wanted vines wrapped around the man on her cover but other than that, she left it up to me.
Vikkas Bhardwaj (www.vikkaszone.com) did a custom photo shoot for her and I went to work on her cover.
I knew her characters didn’t have wings, but I wanted to convey the genre at least a little. Her half angels travel around by sort of melting into the earth, hence the vines.
I wanted to also go against the knee jerk reaction of making the cover black with the title of Black Souls. I wanted the opposite. I wanted subtle wings and golden heavenly light.
The result was my favorite cover to date. Readers commented that the cover model was perfect for the main character. His pose is spot on for the tone of the story.
This cover was so attention grabbing that the writer had over 40 review requests in two hours of posting on her own timeline. Voice actors contacted her to do auditions. It was a bit overwhelming for her, but in a really good way.
People have been leaving great reviews and are eager for her next book in the series. Well, I’m sorry to tell you, there is a tiny bit of wait. However, she has another series out already called The Cursed Series. There are several books there to keep you occupied and a new one will be releasing in March.
In February, she has a stand alone futuristic novel, Object of My Protection. The cover reveal is happening on the 30th in her newsletter. This is also one of my best covers. It was such a treat to make. A definite labor of love. I’m very proud for it to be on her story.
Tortured Soul is the next book in the Forbidden Series. I’ve already designed the cover for it and I love it. Tortured Soul is scheduled for release in April.
About the same time, Jessie Wrights, contacted me about a premade which was already taken. So, we worked out a custom cover for her. Jessie had a good idea of exactly what she wanted and I am delighted to have been able to live up to her expectations.
She did not want the heavenly angel look, she wanted fire and darkness. Well, she had me at fire. Again we browse Vikkas Bhardwaj’s stock images and find one she liked. It came together beautifully.
Can’t wait for this paper back to be on my shelf.
I can’t thank Vikkas enough for the most perfect stock for these covers.
Cover courtesy of Winter Bayne. Model: Vikkas Bhardwaj.
Excerpt from Black Soul Book One of The Forbidden Series
I had forgotten how alarming my abilities might be to a human. I was here then there. In front of her.
Her jaw dropped and her knees gave as I leaned in to catch her. She would find my breath hot and strangely sweet as it tickled her face. I couldn’t stop the effect.
Her pupils narrowed, but she didn’t flinch.
With a curled forefinger, I lifted her chin. “Don’t fear me.”
“Noah?” She whispered incredulously. Her aura alternated between purple and orange, back to purple, then red, then back to purple. Love, fear, love, anger, and ended up on the one I hoped for. Purple:Love.
Caroline reached out. Her fingers grazed the dark, cool skin on my chest. The sensation was as flame to ice. She stroked the muscles that hadn’t…
Well, friends, National Novel Writing Month is drawing to a close …
How did I do?
Not so great. In fact, I almost considered giving up halfway through. But a wonderful friend told me, “Only losers give up, and you are not a loser.” So with her encouragement, I adjusted my goal to simply write every day and build a good habit to carry into next month and the next and so on. And that, I’m glad to say, I managed to successfully accomplish.
But that’s not the only reason I’ve come out of social media hibernation.
After showering you all with several teasing hints, today – finally – marks the release of my holiday short story collection! Behold, I give you …
Isn’t it glorious? Here’s what it’s about:
Ever wondered how your favorite fantasy characters celebrate the holidays?
In this special two-story collection, you’ll journey to Myrillia to…
I am most fortunate to be doing some promotional materials for Sarah Hegger, author of the Sir Arthur Legacy, a medieval romance. She is published through Lyrical Press and you can see her Amazon page here.
She is about to introduce her fifth book in the legacy, so now is a good time to get into the series.
There are more promotional materials in the works, but these are my recent projects.
Joshua Robertson’s historical fiction The Prince’s Parish
This isn’t my usual cover which was rather exciting for me. I basically had this to go on for the cover:
Title: The Prince’s Parish
Genre: Historical Fiction
Concept: An old, rickety table with a old clay cup and spilled dice. Like 800 – 1200 feel. The backdrop should look like a cellar, or just a gradient color that meshes with the table well.
I went on to learn that the story deals with murder at the church. I personally didn’t feel like the cover concept as it was would really communicate the genre and tone. So we bounced around some ideas and I found a bloody hand holding a cross…everything clicked for me. I knew exactly how I wanted it to look. I knew I wanted a lot of browns and golds to give it a vintage look.
Edgar left his grandfather’s sheep farm to become a curate at Arterbury Castle. He had expected a disciplined life with rigorous studies, but instead his spirit is tested by his sinful peers. When death knocks at the church door, Edgar must decide whether or not he has what it takes to survive.
The last two covers have been a wonderful break from Robertson’s usual cover requests. His next story which he is currently editing takes place in the Thrice Nine Legends Saga and I can sum up the cover request as….
A red headed six fingered Giant who lives underground fights a three headed snow dragon and a large polar bear…
*blink* yeah, when is Lilian Oake’s next story coming out? I want that cover…
Come back to see what the hell we come up with for his next story…I’m interested to know myself.
Not sure what your experience is with working with a cover artists, but this is my process. I’ve done several covers for Robertson and to say they can be challenging is an understatement. This cover is for a writer buddy of his Lilian Oake and this is what I had to go on:
Lilian Oake: Title: Bounty of the Everdark Genre: Fantasy
Concept: A jeweled crown wrapped in a dark thorny vine, or a thorny crown. Or a treasure horde covered with thorny vines. A dark themed cover. Dark Gray, Black, Dark Blue.
When I put together a concept for Robertson, they are usually very messy and rough. This is one of the prettier concepts I’ve shown him. He’s seen way worse and not flinched.
And thankfully, in Robertson fashion, he doesn’t freak out. He trusts the process and doesn’t walk away. This is to show him placement, potential colors, and get an overall broad stroke impression. and this is a piece of his feedback:
“Is there a way to wrap some of the vines around the crown. Make it look coiled?”
And we briefly discussed colors though sometimes it is best to tweak colors towards the end.
I jump around working in some texture and play with coloring the jewels.
In no time I’ve got a much cleaner version to get final approval.
This is layering texture and several colors into the image. We’ve come a long way since the first image I showed Robertson. I send him a nice large image to scrutinize. We chatted about a few final tweaks. Robertson and Oake are very laid back and so easy to work with on covers.