What’s In A Cover, Pt 3

Although the original plan for this series was to discuss the Cover Art Sheet and how the covers for Dragon Destiny and Hatchlings Curse came about, destiny and the muse had their own plans. In each of the Dragshi Chronicles, the ceoltiers, the keepers of the past and teachers of the present, recount some legend, one of which is told in Magic and Steel. The original plan was for the novella to be published with the other legends. However, fate decreed the tale be released as an individual work, so of course it needs a cover.

Because a major element of the tale is a sword with magical capabilities, one needs to be part of the design. Should it be black or white, silver or gold, plain or fancy? That’s still open. `  The dragshi are more than just a man or woman. Each are two beings–one a dragon, the other a human–sharing one body in space in time and able to change forms with the other at will. After consideration, a dragon was selected for the second element. Two down, but now in order to accommodate the ‘Rule of Three’ another is needed. The first to be considered was a man and his dog which represented the main character. However the image that originally caught my eye was too contemporary and required too much alteration for the time that was available. Besides using the dog by itself, an alternative animal was looked for and found. The series features a big cat called the gryphlor–which could be represented by a puma or a tiger. With the elements selected, next come layout and what I have always found the hardest part of cover design. Even when using a professional to create the book cover, it still helps to give them an idea to work with. The dragon with its tail wrapped around the sword or facing away. The animal element above or below the sword. And of course, selecting a font.

You’ve seen some of the variants. The banner below shows the final concepts for Magic and Steel.       

~ Till next time. Helen


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