My Publishing Journey: Cover Reveal for Skeletons in the Attic

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00072]One of the most exciting parts of getting published is seeing your cover for the first time. While every publisher works differently (see my post on creating the cover of The Hanged Man’s Noose) , I’ve been very fortunate to have been in on the collarboration for both Noose and Skeletons in the Attic.

To start, Imajin Books asked me this question: What kinds of images do you imagine on your book cover? What elements from your novel would be important to represent?

My response: I think a skeleton would be too obvious, and the Skeletons in the Attic also refers to all the things Callie finds in the attic that lead her to learn more about her mother’s life. One major find was a locket.  Callie also found six Tarot cards: III: The Empress; IV: The Emperor; VI: The Lovers; The Three of Swords; XIII: Death, which are important to the story.

That information was passed along to Ryan Thomas Doan, a talented graphic artist who specializes in book cover art. The first step was the background art (click on the image to enlarge). Notice Ryan’s attention to detail. The creepy attic, the tarot cards—complete with the Rider-Waite imagery—and the all-important locket.

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Once we had the background, it was time to add the text to the front cover. That included the title, of course, as well as a blurb from one of the authors who were kind enough to read an ARC (Advance Reading Copy) of the book.


There was some debate over the font color, but in the end, we selected the orange-gold shade you see here. (again, click on the image to enlarge).

Final step: the back cover. While all reviews are included inside the book, there was a lot of debate on which three blurbs (since there was only room for three) to put on the back cover.

Five authors— Jeff Buick, Ellen Byron, Annette Dashovy, Catriona McPherson and Diane Vallere—offered to read my ARC and provide a blurb if they enjoyed the book (thankfully, they did!). Diane Donovan, Senior Book Reviewer at Midwest Book Review, also provided a rave review, which will be posted on their website, in full, in August. If you’d like to read them (including a partial review by Donovan), you can find them here.

And here is the end result. What do you think????

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SKELETONS IN THE ATTIC will be released on August 21, 2016 by Imajin Books. It is now available for pre-order on Amazon at a special introductory price of .99US (regular price will be $4.99).

8 responses to “My Publishing Journey: Cover Reveal for Skeletons in the Attic

  1. Judy Penz Sheluk

    Thanks Melissa. I’d love another review by you on your blog. Thank you for offering.

  2. Nice cover! Wishing you all the best with its release in August. If you are looking for reviewers, I’d love to feature another one of your book on my blog.

  3. Judy Penz Sheluk

    Thanks Kaye!

  4. It’s wonderful, magical. Good luck!

  5. Judy Penz Sheluk

    Hi Lynn, thanks so much for pre-ordering. I think Ryan did a great job of the cover, too. I love the locket and tarot cards. What is your Standard Poo’s name? Gibbs is very curious. He has quite the fan club (I think more fans than me!). Of course, he is MUCH cuter…

  6. Lynn Franklin

    I really like the cover. It’s got just the right amount of creepiness without making it look like a James Patterson sort of book. I’ve pre-ordered Skeletons in the Attic and am really looking forward to reading it. Oh, and my Standard Poodle said to tell your darling Golden Retriever “hello, from one happy, brilliant dog to another.”

  7. Judy Penz Sheluk

    Thanks Karen, I appreciate you taking the time to comment. So good to hear from you. It’s been a long time. Hope all is well in your world.

  8. Karen Johnson

    Like the cover. It really grabs my eye because of the tarot cards! Good luck!

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