Our company is preparing to release a new Novella titled "Out of
Darkness Rising" in February 2015. "Out of Darkness Rising" is a YA
fantasy written by author Gillian Bronte Adams, and will be the first
book to be released through our press. The book will be 5.25" x 8"
front and back, and the spine will be narrow as the finished document
after the final edits will still likely sit under 200 pages. However,
I would still like to see the Title and the Author's name on the spine
of the book, and if possible, I would also like to see the Magpie
Eclectic Press logo. I have uploaded a createspace template in pdf and
png formats below... the format of this template is for a 5.25" x 8"
cover with a spine to accommodate 200 pages. It should be noted that
the spine should be something relatively easy for me to adjust to the
page count if needed. As the book will be released in both paperback
and e-book formats, we are looking for something edgy and
eye-catching... something that can compete with other books in its
genre and age-group on a physical bookstore shelf, as well as
something that looks good as a thumbnail on the amazon and B&N
Here is the book's blurb:
Darkness reigns unchallenged.
For the villagers on the accursed Island, life has only one meaning
– death. Bound to the Island by the curse, the villagers suffer
beneath the iron claw of the serpent, daily breathing the poison of
his breath and dying to appease his insatiable appetite.
When Marya’s parents are slain by the serpent for their belief in a
legendary king, she becomes an Outcast. Struggling to survive and
avoid the vengeance of the Tribunal, Marya is torn between legend and
the harsh reality of the Island. Yet when a forgotten promise springs
to life, she cannot help wondering if the old stories might in fact
true. And if they are, will the promise prove stronger than the
Originally the book had a different cover, but unfortunately (since
the book and the cover art had been contracted through another press
at the time) I was unable to negotiate the transfer of rights
concerning that cover art to our press. The previous art will be
in an attached file below so that artists can see what has been done
in the past
We are going for a bold, eye-catching look, and will need a full cover
wrap for the physical release of the book, as well as a front cover
image that would look good as a thumbnail on the amazon and B&N
websites for an ebook release.
Here are our ideas so far: (note: several of these design ideas are
similar with only slightly varying details... Also, this is a
type fantasy... designs should be completed with that in mind. )
Idea #1) Similar to the original cover art, a picture of a black sea
serpent or dragon rearing up out of a large body of the water. On the
shore, a fair-haired knight in a flowing blue robe and silver armor
standing with sword drawn, facing the serpent. (Black and White
sketches of the dragon and of the waiting knight have already been
completed and jpeg and tiff files will be included below. It would be
appreciated, though not necessary, if these elements could somehow be
digitally colored and worked into the cover-art design, as they were
originally intended to be part of it anyway. However, once these
elements were painted, they would still need a background. I would be
interested to see who could come up with a relatively good cover
these sketches, but please do not feel limited to only the use of
these sketches as elements in the cover art. Also, the Sea
Serpent/dragon is supposed to be so black that the highlights on his
scales are blue and perhaps dark purple... cool undertones... you
sort of understand this when you look at the attached file of the
original cover art.)
Idea #2) A sword on a dark-ish background with a dragon eye or part
of/all of a dragon's face reflected in its surface.
Idea #3) A sword in front of a stylistic coiled serpent (The serpent
would be white or charcoal grey... I will include a picture that the
author sent me of her version of the serpent in grey on a black robe;
it was part of a costume she made for the book's trailer.)
Idea #4) the same as #3 only with flames (grey serpent preferable in
Idea #5) same as #3 but with a dragon's face reflected in the sword
Idea #6) And Island wreathed in mist rising from a wide loch
Idea #7) (Viewed from behind) A fair-haired young knight in a blue
robe and silver armor standing with sword drawn on the shore of a
mist-filled loch (The included drawing of the prince could be
colorized and used for this option)
Idea #8) A young, red-haired girl in tattered clothes kneeling on
blood stained stone, either looking down at the blood or weeping. She
could possibly be within a circle of standing stones with mist around
Idea #9) An old leather looking cover design with a picture/painting
of an Island rising out of a loch. Surrounding the painting would be
serpent OR a gold celtic-esque ring where the lines of the celtic
knotwork are obviously creating a serpent figure.
10) A sword rising up out of a misty loch
11) A white ship scudding across the waves with a bare, black island
in the background.
Now that you have read the design ideas, I have included a few scenes
from the book describing the elements to be involved in the cover:
1) The Serpent
He raised his right hand above the water and looked down at it. His
gaze riveted and a cry tore from his throat. A hideous iron claw met
his gaze; a twisted, warped, disfigured hand with webbed fingers and
curved talons. He lifted both hands and held them to his eyes,
He peered down at the Loch, searching for his reflection.
The Loch became still at last. A truly monstrous face gazed up at him.
Slanted redrimmed eyes sat about a long bony snout which housed a
gaping mouth filled with jagged fangs. Black smoke poured from the
mouth, settling over the Loch like a cloud. Consuming flames
in the iron bound throat.
Arientyl tore himself away from his reflection and looked back over
his shoulder to behold the rest of his body. It wound away across the
waves, a long, sinuous, snake-like form, covered entirely in black
The Serpent’s neck and forearms rested on the shore while the rest
of his body stretched out across the Loch. His shining black scales
glinted midnight blue in the glare of the approaching storm. “You
could always come with me,” he said.
The Loch heaved and the Serpent surfaced. His hideous head shot out
first, followed by yard after yard of sinuous neck and his two mighty
(The Serpent) drew nearer, halting only a few feet from the Stone. His
great head towered high above. Smoke billowed as he opened his mouth,
revealing a double set of jagged fangs. Red fire burned in the depths
of his throat, reflecting off his fangs so that they appeared to be
covered in blood. The air, bitterly cold a moment before, now felt
and hot as though the Serpent had sucked all of the moisture from the
The Serpent spoke. His voice seemed to come from a great depth,
grating and rumbling like the clatter of falling stones. “Corridan
and Ayanna, foolish ones. There is no King. I rule – I alone. I
decide your fate. You will hail me as King. All will hail me as King
2) The Prince
I could find no sufficient scene to describe the prince, but the
author has told me that he is to be fair haired and be wearing silver
plate armor with a blue cloak flying out behind him and white
surcoat/tunic over the plate.
3) The Prince's Sword
Marya peered toward the spot his finger indicated. There, the Loch
gathered into a strange whirlpool, a swirling circle of water about
four feet in diameter. The whirlpool spun faster and faster, the
and fury of the lashing current thrusting the sides up nearly a yard
out of the water. In the middle of the churning maelstrom, a gleaming
object caught her gaze, flashing as the water whipped it this way and
that; bobbing up and down, now above the waves, now below.
Glinting silver and gold, the stranger’s sword rose up from the
water, lifted by the mounting eddy. Then, as swiftly as it had begun,
the whirlpool died away and the waters resumed their normal course.
The sword remained floating on the misty Loch, rocking back and forth
on the undulating waves.
4) The Island
A dark shadow appeared ahead, like a thick bank of fog. It loomed
larger as the Serpent approached, sharpening into the distinct form
a rocky shore that vanished into the mist a few yards above the tide
This was it. The Island.
The final threads of fog scattered before the strengthening breeze.
Hadriel’s mouth dropped open, a cry frozen on her lips, and she
fell to her knees. No paradise met her eyes, no land glowing with
light or teeming with life. It was a place of death and darkness. A
bare black rock piercing the turbulent waters of the Loch as the tip
of a mountain breaks through the surrounding clouds. Craggy boulders
dotted the barren landscape, here and there joined by stunted thorn
trees and twisted bushes wreathed in sharp spines. Cold wind wrapped
around the island, a ceaseless sighing as it passed over the deserted
rocks and desolate shore.
Again, I could find no sufficient scene to describe Marya, but she
has long wavy flaxen hair probably full of tangles. Her clothes are
basically rags. Her parents were taken before the Serpent in a circle
of standing stones out on the rocky beach, and there they were
After that, she became an outcast.
6) The Fight between the Prince and the Serpent
Circling, moving as lightly over the waves as if he were walking on
firm ground, the Prince held his sword at the ready. The Serpent
lunged and the Prince sidestepped, darting forward with a striking
speed that rivaled that of the Serpent. His sword flashed and the
Serpent screeched. Boiling blood streamed down the monster’s back
from a stab wound in his left shoulder.
A stream of flame stabbed at the Prince and he threw up his blazing
sword to protect his face. The Serpent’s spiked tail whipped
the water, smashing into the Prince’s legs. He fell on his back,
rolled as the Serpent’s teeth fell, recovered and charged. Ducking
beneath a thunderous slash of the Serpent’s claws, he leaped onto
his armored back.
The Serpent’s neck coiled and the Prince barely dodged the sweeping
teeth. He gripped the serried rows of ridged scales with his left
hand, and unleashed a blinding barrage of blows with the sword in his
right. Though the Serpent’s scales were hard as iron, the
sword was keen and sharp. The glowing blade sung through the air,
drawing blood again and again.
Bright flashed the sword in the strong hand of the Prince; many and
serious were the deadly wounds which it inflicted on the Serpent. Yet
though that vile monster strove his hardest, not once was he able to
injure the Prince. The mighty combat raged until the Loch was lashed
with foam and streaked with the blood of the Serpent.
Light battled darkness, life battled death.
Until at last, the Prince threw down the Serpent and stood with the
point of his sword at the beast’s throat.