Your Vote Matters: Help Me Pick My Next Book Cover

I swear, this next sentence is NOT fake news: I went a little bonkers a few weeks ago and came up with a baseball team’s worth of cover designs for my upcoming book, Domna. Now I need your help to decide which one will make the cut.

I have a few favorites, but I would love your thoughts on/votes for your favorite design. It should only take a couple minutes and there’s even a handy dandy survey box below if you’re shy about leaving comments.

If you’ve never helped me pick a cover before, there’s a few things to keep in mind before you scroll down to make your selection (unless you’ve already scrolled down, you eager little beaver)…

  • Most Important: The cover needs to be eye-catching at a small size, so please resist the urge to enlarge them as you look them over.
  • Second most important: I want the cover to convey a sense of mystery, of mythical/historical fantasy, and/or of a strong female protagonist.
  • Third most important: Try not to overthink this. Look over the samples as quickly as possible then pick the cover that entices you the most.
  • Important? Not so much: The e-book version will be serialized into six parts, but I plan to use the same cover design for all six parts (except as noted); the paperback will have a single cover.

Ready? Here are the nine designs to choose from…..

From left to right, these are covers 1A, 1B, 1C (the color of this cover could be altered for each “part” of the series). Note: Ignore the Canva watermark on the image (it will be removed).

From left to right, these are covers 2A, 2B, 2C. Again, ignore the Canva watermark on the image (it will be removed).

From left to right, these are covers 3, 4, and 5.

How to vote (Easy!!)

  • Simply use the survey form below to mark the number of the design that most caught your eye (sometimes you can’t see the form in WordPress Reader or email, in that case, just visit this post at my blog to vote).
  • If none of these covers appeal to you, please mark “None” so I can know to go back to the drawing board.
  • Of course, any thoughts are welcome, so don’t hesitate to critique, compliment, or offer suggestions. The covers can be adjusted for brightness, saturation, color tone, so if there’s one you like but think it could use a color/tone shift just let me know.

Bonus points for the Over-Achievers Out There!!!

Once you have a favorite in mind, please scroll down a tad bit further and read my temporary description of the book’s premise. Then take some time for a little re-think and decide….

  • Does this description change your opinion of which cover is your favorite?
  • If so, which one do you think is better suited?

Thanks everyone!!! Your opinion really does matter, so please, please, please take a second to cast your vote.

I’ll be back next week with a little background information on the history that went into the making of Domna. And Saturday, Finn and I will be back on Inishmore hunting down ancient sites and encountering a traffic donkey.

See you then!


Domna Description (for now)

“My destiny, my goal, my ambition was to be a priestess. Instead I was forced to became a wife. Even worse, I became the wife of man with no goals, no ambition. A man who wanted destiny to fall on his lap like a nymph who indulged in too much of Dionysus’s bounty. Worse still, I was already in love with someone else.”

Set in Osteria a few generations before the start of The Trials of HerculesDomna tells the tale of Sofia Domna, a woman who believed herself destined to become high priestess of Apollo but whose life takes a cruel turn when she’s forced to wed a man she barely knows. As Sofia’s life moves through the trials of marriage, motherhood, and yearning love, she learns that destiny isn’t given; it’s made by cunning, endurance, and, at times, bloodshed.

In the classic style of serialization, Domna is a single novel told in six parts, with the first part scheduled for release in January 2019. Each subsequent part will be released in three-week increments in ebook format. The paperback will be released in late January or early February and will contain all six parts in one volume.

To keep up to date on the release of Domna, be sure to sign up for my mailing list.


Writing News: I’m Dancing the Jig of Joy!!!

With another heat wave hovering over us, we’re sweltering here in Portland, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been getting plenty of exercise…namely in the form of Happy Dancing (hopefully no neighbors have been peeking in the windows!).

And the reason for this jig of joy? Well…..

Last Saturday at about 5:25 p.m. I finished a major rewrite of my work in progress!!!

As you may know from a previous post, this project was originally written as a historical novel a few years ago, but had so many issues I crammed it in a drawer. A very deep drawer. Sometimes I would hear it calling from its dungeon, and a couple times I even tried to tackle it again, but could never brave the massive amount of work required to clear up those trouble spots (okay, not spots, more like gaping black holes big enough to swallow our entire galaxy). Continue reading

Where to Go from Here?

So now that The Bonds of Osteria has been unleashed upon the world and I had a wee bit of a success (relatively speaking) with the launch, I’m left wondering where to go from here. Plus, given that we’re now halfway through 2018, it seems like a perfect time to re-evaluate what in the world I’m doing (honestly, most days I have no idea).

And as ever when I have big decisions to make, I’m going to beg for a little help from my readers so be sure to scroll down to drop your vote in my surveys below.

So, what’s up for debate? Three things…sort of like the Spanish Inquisition, although with less fear and surprise and only a dab of ruthless efficiency. Okay, nothing like the Spanish Inquisition, I just like to work in a Monty Python reference whenever possible. Annnnyway, the three things are… Continue reading

Making It to Number One on Amazon (sort of)

A Little Warning & Apology

Okay, this post is going against my usual humble style and I’ll just preface all this braggy-sounding content by letting you know that all these amazing rankings were only in the Amazon Kindle Free Store (as opposed to the Paid Store) and so don’t quite count as much. Plus, I know the number of books I ended up giving away are pretty much what many authors sell every day even without big promo pushes and I should be embarrassed by them, not shouting them to the world. But still, last week was an exciting time compared to anything I’ve achieved so far with my books!

Annnnnyway… you may know, last Wednesday was the official Release Day for The Bonds of Osteria, the fourth book in my Osteria Chronicles series. After all the recent studying I’ve been doing regarding book marketing, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to put some of my book learnin’ into action.

My Goals for This Launch & Promo Push

Continue reading

My Favorite Story Line: Orpheus & Eurydice

I’ve made it back from my adventures on the Emerald Isle, and although there’s the post-vacation blues and jet lag to sort through, I’m still super excited to crank out today’s post because it’s finally time to tell you all about my favorite of the many story lines I’ve woven together in The Bonds of Osteria.

Sure, Perseus and Medusa are classically familiar, and what girl doesn’t love a bit of Pegasus in her life? But the legend of Orpheus and Eurydice quickly turned into the story line I was most eager to work on over the many, many, MANY drafts to bring Bonds to life.

The Myth Vs. The Book: Orpheus & Eurydice

As with my past two forays into Myths Vs Book, I’m going to shout “SPOILER ALERT!!” right now, especially if you don’t know one lick of the story of Orpheus and Eurydice. The original myth is in regular typeface, while I’ve enclosed my version of events in **italics** like so. Got it? Okay, on with the myth and my twist on this beautiful tale.

There’s a few slight variations of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth, but let’s stick with the basics. In Greek myths, Orpheus is the son of the muse Calliope and the god Apollo who gives him a lyre. Orpheus turns out to be a child prodigy and ends up playing the most beautiful tunes in all the world.

Lyre, lyre, pants on fire!

**Those of you already familiar with the Osteria Chronicles know that Orpheus’s mom desperately wants her son to be a musician, but he’s got this pesky yearning to tinker with engineering (kids these days, am I right?). Still, Mom has gotten her way and Orpheus can play a mean bit of harp when required. Although I haven’t come out and clearly stated it, there are hints in The Bonds of Osteria that Orpheus may have divine parentage.** Continue reading