Sunday, August 29, 2010

A New Book Cover

Have you ever put something off that you needed to do? Over and over again? For almost a year now I've been planning to give my book, Angels at the Crossroads a cover make-over. Angels at the Crossroads is the only non-fiction book I've ever written and probably will be the only non-fiction book I'll ever write. I like making up my stories. But this book is different. It's the life story/testimony of Jerry Shepherd who used to sing in the Patriot Quartet with my husband. Some of you may have read his story.
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Anyway after The Scent of Lilacs was published and we were riding around on that big old bus getting to know everybody in the group almost too well, Jerry would talk about what happened to him when he was a teenager and young adult. He messed up, plain and simple, got mixed up with drugs and alchohol and because of things he did a man died. Jerry ended up in a Georgia prison for murder at the age of nineteen. He could have given up there and lost all hope, but the Lord wasn't through with Jerry. He gave him a second chance by putting people in his path (earth angels, if you will) to guide him back to hope and forgiveness. Because of that love and forgiveness, Jerry promised to tell his story any time he had the chance to keep others from making the same mistakes he made. Even before he got out of prison he was witnessing about how the Lord had forgiven him and helped him step out on a new road. It's a powerful story. Not because I wrote it but because of how the Lord worked in Jerry's life.
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So after I wrote that first Hollyhill story and had heard the great news that Revell wanted to publish it, I had the strong feeling that the next story I wrote down should be Jerry's story. And I promised Jerry if he let me write his story I would make sure the book got published - one way or another. My editor read the finished story and turned it down saying it wouldn't have the market appeal they needed to publish a book. Other editors turned it down. And I was left with my promise. So I went the self-publish route, but I made one big mistake and that was the cover. It's not right for the story. As one reviewer said it looks like the cover of a collection of homilies. Jerry's amazing story is inspirational, but at the same time it's gritty and raw. And while a sunrise does play a part in his story, I should have rejected the cover and held out for one that gave a better representation of the story. That's where I am now. We've about sold out of copies and I don't want to print any more with the old cover. I've known that for months. For months, I've put off doing anything about it. I think I kept waiting for a sign. Somebody to come grab the book and say here's the perfect idea for a new cover and we're going to make it happen. Well, unfortunately that hasn't happened. I finally had to realize that if the book got a new cover, I was going to have to get things rolling. I have pushed the start button - at last. Now I just have to decide what to suggest for the cover art. Not pink for sure. I keep seeing an open prison door. Other people have suggested a police car with lights flashing. Somebody said a deserted car with the door open. Perhaps at a crossroads. If you've read the book, what would you suggest?
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Thanks to all of you who entered my book giveaway. Details are on the Event page of my website,
http://www.annhgabhart.com/. I'll be drawing for the winners on Tuesday, but you can still send me an e-mail to enter or leave a comment here.
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Hope you're having a beautiful Sunday. Talk to you again next week.

7 comments:

  1. Hi Ann, Jerry's story is one I'd like to read or hear about. I love 2d chance stories that show the greatness of God's mercy and grace. Are you planning on changing the title as well as the book cover? I enjoy being creative...but so far have nothing definite in ideas for a new book cover. Hmmm... Angels at the Crossroads depicts angels to me in the middle of a crossroad. Since satan was an angel, but fell from grace, there could be an angelic being (light) and a not so angelic being (dark) facing each other in the middle of a crossroads, one road dark...one light; with a defeated human being laying between them. Only a suggestion. LOL I didn't know if this book is to be a giveaway, but if so, I'd appreciate my name being in the drawing. Thank you.

    Sharing God's Love,
    Barb Shelton
    barbjan10 at tx dot rr dot com

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  2. I would love to win a copy of one of your books in the giveaway! I've read Orchard of Hope and Summer of Joy and LOVED them to pieces, but my library doesn't have The Scent of Lilacs. That's the book I would definitely pick! Those books are amazing! :)

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  3. Great idea, Barb. I'll be doing some brainstorming with the cover designer and also seeking the Lord's guidance in coming up with the right idea. But if I draw your name you can pick Jerry's story - with the old cover. Thanks for your comment. I enjoy hearing from readers.

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  4. Hi, Kelly. Thanks for chiming in. So glad you enjoyed my Hollyhill stories. Too bad your library didn't have The Scent of Lilacs. Do they do inter-library loans or is that intra-library loans? (I need an English teacher or a librarian.) If they do, they might get it from a different library for you. If I draw your name, I'll let you pick that one even though I don't have many copies left. Revell is scheduled to re-release the Hollyhill books in 2012 or 2013. That sounds like a long time for now, but the years spin by.

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  5. I would love to win one of the amazing prizes! I have only read one of your books, The Seeker, and it was absolutely amazing! You are a seasoned author and write from your heart to touch your readers! THANK YOU!!!!

    Blessings
    Molly
    Mollydedwards AT yahoo DOT com

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  6. Thanks for checking in Molly and getting your name in for the drawing tonight. I'll let everybody know the first names of the winners on my blog tomorrow and on Facebook. Thanks so much for letting me know you liked The Seeker and for reading my on-line journal here. Let me know what's going on with you any time.

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  7. Thanks for checking in Molly and getting your name in for the drawing tonight. I'll let everybody know the first names of the winners on my blog tomorrow and on Facebook. Thanks so much for letting me know you liked The Seeker and for reading my on-line journal here. Let me know what's going on with you any time.

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Thanks for joining the conversation. I like hearing what you have to say. Thanks for dropping by.