I should be ordering round 2 of proofs for STERLING this week. I had to make some modifications to the formatting, and prior to submission, I'll be giving the cover another once-over.
It's not an easy task to sit down and do one of these. When I say I design my own covers, I actually design them. All of my original covers are in GIMP format, so I was able to utilize the background by itself for the back cover vs making it solid black.
Blending was a nightmare. I'm so picky that I was blowing things up to 200% so I could properly clone and smear. The template they give you helps keep your text within the markers, so it doesn't get cut off during printing. The cover is going to come out great. Proof #1 was a touch dark, but I lightened it up just a little bit. I like the contrast going on and only worked to correct the heavy ink that occurs in printing. Overall, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, but it was a lot of work and gave me a tiny ulcer. ;-)
So, this is the semi-complete version (revisions may be made to text)
I feel better about the process and will be anxious to work on Twist when I get a free moment. I think once I finish up with the first draft of MB4, I'll probably give it a day of my time to get started. I'd love for Sterling to be available before Christmas, but I'm not holding my breath. I don't think that will happen, but I'm almost certain it'll be in January. So good news for those of you who love paperbacks!
I'm not going to lie, having my book on one of my bookshelves is a very cool thing. My plans are to give them their own cube, and to fill it.