I signed with Eternal Press in March, and, of course, my two biggest concerns were a) would the editor force me to change stuff I didn’t want to change, and b) please, God, let me get a gorgeous cover.
Turns out I didn’t have to worry on either front. It took two months of nail biting to finally see what the cover artist came up with, but I love my cover! The bright, bold, saturated colors, the color palette, and the model for Irene (she’s perfect!) are all amazing and eye catching. I know my book will stand out on the shelves.
I especially love the sort of inside joke created by the light rays behind Irene—those rays make her look like she’s an angel or there’s a heavenly light shining down on her. However, Irene is NOT an angel, not by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, here’s an excerpt of a conversation between Irene, who is dead and stuck on Earth as a ghost, and Jonah, a fourteen-year-old boy who can see dead people—courtesy of a book he found in his school library. Jonah suggests the possibility the Irene is stuck on Earth as a form of purgatory, and here is her response:
“Yeah, well I’m holding out for heaven, thank you for very much.”
Jonah was silent.
“Thanks for the vote of confidence!” Irene cried, stung by the insinuation in his silence.
“Isn’t heaven supposed to be kind of boring?”
“It’s heaven. It’s supposed to be…you know, heaven.”
“Yeah, but isn’t it supposed to be all people sitting around on clouds, playing harps?”
They were sitting in traffic, backed up from the toll plaza in the middle of the bridge. The car inched forward. Irene drummed impatiently on the steering wheel and craned to see what the holdup was.
“You’d like that?” Jonah asked, drawing her attention back to the conversation. “Sitting on clouds and stuff?”
She glanced at him, but he was staring resolutely out the window. “Well, compared to the alternative of being roasted in a pit of fire, I guess it’ll do.”
There was a protracted pause. “I just don’t think it sounds like you.”
Irene shot him a dark look, which he also didn’t see. “Yeah, well, you don’t know me very well, do you?”
The cover for Hereafter was a challenge because it’s a cross-genre story. It’s not urban fantasy, it’s not romance, it’s not chick lit, but it has elements of all three. We ended up tweaking the first draft of the art to try and get the right genre look—just small things like changing the title font and adding those fabulous light rays behind Irene’s head—and that was it. The process was very painless and the artist, the wonderfully talented Amanda Kelsey, nailed the concept on the first try. I think she did a great job of capturing the essence of the story as well as the “feel” of it and I’m looking forward to seeing what readers think. Thank you, Amanda!
Terri Bruce has been making up adventure stories for as long as she can remember and won her first writing award when she was twelve. Like Anne Shirley, she prefers to make people cry rather than laugh, but is happy if she can do either. She produces fantasy and adventure stories from a haunted house in New England where she lives with her husband and three cats. Her first novel, HEREAFTER—a contemporary fantasy about a woman’s search for redemption in the afterlife—will be released by Eternal Press later this year. Visit her on the web at www.terribruce.net.
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Goodreads Profile: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/8244272-terri-bruce
Thirty-six-year-old Irene Dunphy didn't plan on dying any time soon, but that’s exactly what happens when she makes the mistake of getting behind the wheel after a night bar-hopping with friends. She finds herself stranded on Earth as a ghost, where food has no taste, the alcohol doesn’t get you drunk, the sex...well, let’s just say, “don’t bother.” To make matters worse, the only person who can see her—courtesy of a book he found in his school library—is a fourteen-year-old boy genius obsessed with the afterlife. This sounds suspiciously like hell to Irene, so she prepares to strike out for the Great Beyond. The problem is that, while this side has exorcism, ghost repellents, and soul devouring demons, the other side has three-headed hell hounds, final judgment, and eternal torment. If only there was a third option…