It’s here! The cover for The Devil’s Own Desperado arrived while I was in Biloxi for the last five days playing dog show. It’s beyond what I imagined. All I can say is that the art department at the Wild Rose Press is full of talented, creative people. Debby Taylor, who did my cover, took my suggestions and created this. I am so pleased with this cover. Maybe because it’s my first but I am just over the moon with it.
And, the cover now has me believing that it’s finally real. I am going to be published in book length. All the years of hard work, all the rejection slips, all the false starts (including one with an agent that was more predator than anything else) are finally beginning to pay off.
I’ve been writing since I was in high school. Some of those stories I still have, in hard copy, and when I go back and reread them, I shudder. What in the sam hill was I thinking? Oh, wait…I was starting…and it shows in the writing. The writing was full of purple prose, over the top descriptions, choking with clichés, stereotypes, cardboard figures…you name it, it was in those first tottering steps. Others, written later (much later), were better. One of my favorites, which probably will never see the light of day other than the few very close friends who have read it, is tightly written, fast paced, and has a hero who is very near and dear to my heart. He’s beyond wounded—he’s completely crippled by the events that have shaped his past, and the manner that he chose to shape those events. (I think that’s the reason why I like dark, tormented, Gothic heroes so—can anyone say “Severus Snape”?)
And yet with each story that I wrote, each attempt to land an agent or a publishing contract, I grew as a writer. I learned. I honed my craft. I will be the first to admit that I am still learning, growing, and honing my ability as a writer.
Someone once said that the writing life isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s usually a long, hard slog. There are setbacks, disappointments, dismal failures—and then comes the request to see the complete manuscript. And then comes the statement “I’d like to offer you a contract for publication.” Even after signing the contract, after joining the list-serve board for the authors at my publication house, even after working on now two rounds of edits, I still wasn’t sure it was real. Part of me kept saying it couldn’t be real, it was just a dream…
This says it’s not a dream. That’s my book’s cover!