What was your intention for the cover?
Angelic Hellfire – Angelic Hellfire is a sci-fi novel but the sci-fi elements don’t really come in until half-way through the book, and some of my beta readers said the shift in tone was very dramatic, and it wasn’t at all what they were expecting. I wanted to make sure any readers knew going in that this is a sci-fi novel so I wanted my cover to reflect that. I also wanted to show a contrast between the blazing fire and the peacefulness of Earth in space.
Step Into My Soul – I always wanted to have a cover for this that was like someone entering my soul. My initial concept was a bright cavern with a small figure walking into it, but unfortunately I’m not skilled enough to make that a reality. But I think the cover as it is works, I think the human soul (if indeed we have one) is infinite and sometimes it can feel like a gaping abyss.
I, Tomorrow? and Other Stories – I wasn’t sure what to do with this because it’s a collection of stories so I wanted something conceptual. A lot of my stories deal with the nature of reality and our perception of the world. As it is the shape is sort of head-like and the surroundings are very bright so I think it suggests we’re this entity floating in a conceptual world.
Fraudulent – It’s set in the 19th Century so I wanted something that had an old feeling. I decided on the parchment letter and the compass because in the story he travels a lot, but the story is really about being pulled by the four words on the letter (love, honour, duty and death) so it works on a literal and metaphorical level, or at least I hope it does!
How did you create the cover?
For all of the covers I used Photoshop and just played around. I always had an idea of what I wanted, some things were beyond my ability but I eventually came up with something else. I did try to get some of my more artistic-minded friends to do some for me but that never really worked out.
Are you happy with the end result?
Mostly, yes. Like I said, this stuff isn’t my specialty so I don’t think they’re perfect, but I’m proud that I worked out how to do them and it took a while to tinker until I was happy with it. Plus it’s always better to have a cover. I know the saying is ‘never judge a book by its cover,’ but the simple truth is a cover attracts readers and it makes a lot of difference.
Is there anything you would change?
I’m not sure really, I’m very happy with Fraudulent. Step Into My Soul I’d still like to one day have the cavern idea. I, Tomorrow? I like, Angelic Hellfire I think I’d maybe make the Earth a little bigger, or just polish the cover a little bit.
What do you think the cover says about your book?
I think they say what I intended them to say. Perhaps Angelic Hellfire makes people think that Earth is in danger of burning (you’ll have to read it to find out whether that is the case!) Because Step Into My Soul and I, Tomorrow? are conceptual readers probably come up with their own ideas. Actually it’d be interesting to see what it made them think of.
Published by Robert D. Spake on Oct 26, 2012
Genres: Science Fiction, YA
Find the book: Amazon, Goodreads
Angelic Hellfire is a coming-of-age story focusing on Aaliyah, a young woman who ran away from home when she was a teenager. She lives in the worst part of town but always dreams of a better day and an unlikely encounter with a mysterious stranger gives her the final push she needs to rebuild her life.
Tormented by personal demons she embarks on a fantastic journey striving to realise the potential which she knows lies within her. She finds that going home is not always a happy reunion but just as she’s at her lowest ebb the mysterious stranger re-appears and offers her an opportunity which opens her mind to the vast possibilities of the universe. Can she step out of the shadows from her past and enter the bright future which awaits?
My Thoughts: I like the concept of the cover, but think it needs a bit of polishing. The black background is too stark without any stars, and the flames need to be incorporated better. I don’t think the cover matches the summary. When I think of a teen coming of age story, I picture covers with people on them, usually slightly misty or blurry. The summary also doesn’t mention anything about sci-fi, which it should.
What do you think of the cover? Does it make you want to pick up the book?