Anatomy of a Front Cover

My second novel, Nightmare Lullaby, is very nearly ready to make its debut before the world — I’m reading the “home stretch” of the proof even now — and it has a front cover, courtesy of Gilded Dragonfly Books‘ artist Gina Dyer.

One of the things I love about working with GDB is their approach to covers. I’ve heard many writers complain about complete lack of input when it comes to the images meant to sell their books to the public. GDB, however, does nothing without checking with me first. The images you see on this cover are an integration of pictures I found on, so in a sense I collaborated with Gina on this cover.

The vision of a white-skinned woman dominates, the closest I could find to a representation of Meliroc, my lead character. She lacks the blazing, angry green eyes I describe in the novel, but hey, when you choose to make your lead an eight-foot-tall albino, finding even a “close-but-no-cigar” image can be a challenge. The pictured woman does have Meliroc’s otherworldly beauty, and even better, her skittish mistrust, as she’s looking over her shoulder to confront whatever threat may approach from behind. In the distance to the left, we see a winter-scape. I started working on this book during a cold January and decided a wintry setting suited the tale.

The blazon “Lullaby” covers a background image of a xylophone, which represents the instrument that masked musician Feuval bestows on Meliroc. The music she makes with it proves to be her lifeline but also her greatest danger.

Nightmare Cover.jpg


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