The official blog of author Jean Marie Bauhaus

Category: Graphics

Cover Wars! Again.

All righty, gang, I finally found the time to re-redo my cover for Dominion. To refresh everybody’s memory, here is the clear favorite from the last round of cover voting:

 

And here’s the latest version, which pretty much goes in a completely different direction:

 

And to help you decide which fits best, here’s the synopsis:

When the unimaginable happens and the dead come to life to roam the earth in search of human flesh, Hannah Jordan and her infant brother Noah take refuge in their family’s backyard bomb shelter. Months later, they emerge to find a world still overrun by zombies and ruled by vampires. These new self-styled “protectors” of humanity keep their food supply “safe” inside interment camps all over the world.

Hannah and her brother are quickly rounded up and taken to such a camp, where Noah is taken as a hostage to keep Hannah in line; but in this stark new reality, infants like Noah are a rarity. He draws the attention of vampire Alexandr Konstantin, a doctor, scientist and lone champion of human rights who wants to use Noah’s pure, untainted blood in his vaccine research. Alek pulls strings to take Hannah and Noah back to his own camp at an abandoned Army base, where humans live in safety and co-exist with vampires in peace.

For a little while, life is good. But when the ruling class of vampires decide they like things the way they are, they order Alek to shut down his research, and his commune, and turn those under his protection over to the interment camps. As Alek, Hannah and the commune’s other residents prepare to do battle to defend their home, a breach in the base’s fence lets the zombie horde into the camp. As all hell breaks loose around them, can Alek and Hannah develop that vaccine in time to give what remains of humanity a fighting chance? And if they do, what will it cost them?

Genre: Horror/Urban Fantasy (NOT YA)

Right, then. What say you, dear reader?

By the way, if you’re on Facebook you can also vote for your favorite cover version on my Facebook author page (which I don’t need to ask you guys to like because you’ve totally already done so, right?).

 

Cover Wars

Thanks to everyone who offered feedback on the potential cover concepts for Dominion of the Damned. The general consensus was overwhelmingly in favor of the third concept, featuring a girl with a gun standing on a desolate highway, the feedback on which ranged from “least cheesy” to “awesome.” Of course, for practical and budgetary reasons I was hoping the majority would favor the second concept, which wouldn’t cost me anything to produce. But both aesthetically and conceptually I’m in agreement with the readers—I think the cover representing my protagonist is the strongest.

Now the next step is to purchase a high-res copy of the photo, which will have to wait until my next payday, and then refine the concept into something that is hopefully totally awesome and not at all cheesy—although, when you’re talking about a cover to a novel about vampires subjugating the human race in the wake of a zombie apocalypse, I have a feeling that a certain segment of the population is going to find a certain amount of cheese no matter what. And I admit that my vision of zombie hands reaching toward the girl from out of frame probably won’t do anything to decrease the cheese factor. Although that would probably be stretching beyond the limit of my Photoshop skills, so that version of the cover very well may not happen.

Feedback is also starting to come back in on the book itself, and if the consensus agrees with the first beta reader, I’m going to have a fair amount of rewriting to do before it’s ready for prime time. So, allowing for uncertainty and the fact that I ALWAYS underestimate how long stuff like this will take me to get done, we’re probably looking at a June release. Which is fine, as that gives me time not only to make the cover as awesome as I can make it, but also to get new author portraits made. Not that the old ones aren’t perfectly lovely, compositionally speaking, thanks to the EXTREME talents of my baby sister, but they were taken at an incredibly sucky time in my life, and also in the life of my hair. So a new portrait is definitely in order.

My agenda for today also includes drafting a marketing plan for the book, which I’ll share here once I get it nailed down. I didn’t have any kind of plan or do any pre-marketing for Restless Spirits, so it should be an interesting case study to see if any of that makes a difference for Dominion.

But first thing’s first, and that’s perfecting the cover. I’m sure I’ll be hitting you guys up for more feedback once I get it closer to the final version.

More Dueling Covers For Your Consideration

This time for Dominion. I have an opinion, but I’m going to keep it to myself for the time being.

First, the cover I originally mocked up waaay back in 2009 for NaNoWriMo (which isn’t really up for consideration–it’s just so you can see where I started from):

 

 

And now a more stylized and abstract version of the same theme:

 

 

And finally,  one that puts the focus on my main protagonist:

 

Which one entices you the most, dear readers?

Also, thanks for all the feedback on the new Restless Spirits cover. Since opinion was divided pretty evenly over the light vs. dark versions, I went ahead and used both — the dark on the paperback and BN.com, and the light on Amazon and Smashwords. I’ll see which, if any, has the greatest impact on sales, and then go with that one across the board. That’s the beauty of e-publishing–nothing is set in stone.

Light or Dark?

Okay, I tweaked the new cover a bit more, and I need help deciding which I like best: the daytime version or the nighttime one?

Daylight

 

Dusk

 

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