With the publication date locked, I need to get a finished cover design. Without it, all the promotional material is stalled: social media posts, pictures, ads, the book trailer, everything.

My novel is about two people separated by time. She lives in California, near the Giant Sequoia forest in 1989. He’s across the river from New York City in 2019.

Over the last couple of months, I’ve worked on the cover. I’m not a graphic designer, but I’ve done a few professional jobs and know my way around Photoshop. I tried several different designs with no luck, but the image I came up with that clicked for me, was a composite of two photographs. The first by a fantastic photographer, Zetong Li, of a majestic forest of Sequoias.

The second was a striking image by another brilliant photographer, Burst, looking straight up at a cluster of skyscrapers vanishing into fog. I manipulated the images, accentuating the height, and intensifying the colors.

My cover art.

I next started experimenting with different fonts trying to find one that worked for the title. My design PC has over 10,000 fonts available. But you can’t install that many, or the poor thing couldn’t run. Still, with about 200 to choose from, I failed to find anything that popped.

I realized the smart thing to do would be to hire a professional for the job. So I did.

Zenon Slawinski is a graphic designer from Virginia with a long list of credits, including many book cover designs. You can check out his amazing portfolio HERE.

My concern about the cover is I want it to appeal to both male and female readers. I didn’t want a font style that might repel one or the other. Zenon set to work and within two days I had about a dozen proofs to look through.

On Friday I put out the call to my friends, family, folks on my mailing list, and my beta readers, to ask for help narrowing down the many options Zenon has provided me. The feedback already has been tremendous.

I will be meeting with him again on Monday and narrowing the choices down to just a couple variations. I’ll have an official cover reveal when it’s finalized. If you’re curious to see the variations or to participate in the process, please sign up for the newsletter with the form above. Your contact information will never be shared with anyone.