Some of you have been with me on this long, long publishing journey ever since the founding of NAF back in 2010. At that point, I’d already been shopping Alara’s Call for several years. I’ve already written several posts about the process of getting Alara’s Call published. Now I have a new publisher, Love2ReadLove2Write Publishing, and we are on target for a September release. Today I get to show you the cover.
There was a time I despaired of ever finding a cover model for this book. I had a picture of Alara in my head, but I never saw anyone who looked like her. I nevertheless started a Pinterest board for my characters. Of course General Rariden will always be Harrison Ford, and at one point I decided Jenna Coleman could portray Alara. But getting Jenna Coleman on the cover of my book was not going to happen.
Eventually, though, I found a model who had the right face, the right hair and … well, we can Photoshop the eyes to be green, right? Right. The only problem with the photo I picked was that my editor, Michele Israel Harper, found it was already in use on another book cover. So I picked a different photo—same model, different dress—but this dress wasn’t like any that are described in the book. So you know what I did? I found a scene where I hadn’t described Alara’s clothes and added a description of the dress. Throughout the story her mother has a habit of criticizing Alara’s clothing choices, so this was easy. Here’s a peek:
The next day was spent in gatherings of vast numbers of nobility, politicians, and distantly removed relatives. By the time they finished dinner—served in a hall bigger than the dining room at Denedra, and with nearly as many people—and retired to Jentiérri’s study, Dorrel looked as if he would snap. Or collapse.
Collapse he did, into a settee upholstered in tapestry. Alara patted his shoulder. “Tea or port?”
He rubbed his forehead. “Tea, please.”
She drew two cups while Domínarey served port.
Mum tsked. “A bit underdressed for dinner with the prelate, baby.”
Alara stifled a sigh. Back home, her gown of blue and gold satin, trimmed with white lace, would never have been described that way. But her skirt lacked a crinoline, which set her apart from the other ladies. “Sorry, Mum.” She picked up the tea and turned.
Sara Helwe did a beautiful job on the cover:
You should’ve heard me squee when I first saw this. It still gives me a thrill. The background even looks like one of the royal palaces where part of the story takes place.
The release date for Alara’s Call is September 19. We’ll be having a Facebook launch party September 21, and if you’re in Central Florida, there will be a launch party at Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church September 30, 1-3 p.m. I hope to see you in one place or the other! Thanks for joining me on the journey.