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A fantasy novella for adults about a wild seven-year-old who makes her way in a perilous royal court. (Art by Kate Baylay)
103 backers pledged $6,695 to help bring this project to life.

Cover Design Reveal, And How To Get A Free Short Story Ebook

Posted by Sarah Avery (Creator)

This morning the book designers sent me a proof of the cover design, and it looks like just the kind of book I'd pick up if I saw it on the bookstore shelf:

Cover Design Proof (Art by Kate Baylay, Design by Design for Writers)
Cover Design Proof (Art by Kate Baylay, Design by Design for Writers)

I'm debating with myself about whether all those caps in the title and author credit need to be spaced a little closer together. Possibly they'll be easier to read at thumbnail size online as they currently stand. The italics on the award title will almost certainly get de-italicized. This is why we do proofs. In any case, I'm very happy with the overall direction the design is taking.

Meanwhile, I've been working on putting my website and email list to better use. This Kickstarter list is only for Kickstarter-related news; I'll only ever send you an email from here if something newsworthy is happening with The Imlen Brat.

My own mailing list is very low-traffic, and I've done quite a bit of research into what people like to see in author newsletters and announcements. As a thank-you for email list subscribers, I'm offering a free short story ebook, a spin-off about Stisele, the heroine of The Imlen Brat. For at least the next three years, this story will be available only to my list subscribers.

(Why three years? At that point, it will probably be part of a novel.)

"The Enemy in Snowmelt Season" finds Stisele in her late teens, serving in a war zone as her foster father's envoy. She has a mission to complete, but a snowmelt flood throws her into the company of an enemy soldier and traps them both atop an ancient ruin. Who will be whose prisoner? Whose side will find them first – her weathercalling kin, or the unstable prophets who command his Augury? That’s assuming she -- and her meddlesome ghost companions -- can keep herself alive through the night.

Thanks to my patient spouse, this 9,000 word story is formatted for Kindle, ePub, and Mobi, all DRM-free. It's not quite a work of design like The Imlen Brat will be when it comes back from Design for Writers, but Kate Baylay's lovely colophon gave us something to put on the cover. Here it is in the royal red of the Principality of Beltresa, the commoners' leaping dolphin emblem in gold under a heavy crown of seven tines. Now you know what the banners of Utroneth, Sovereign Princess of Beltresa, look like.

Colophon Image by Kate Baylay
Colophon Image by Kate Baylay

 I had so much fun writing that short story.

Here's how to get it:

  • Go to my website,
  • Click on the Subscribe button to join my (very low-traffic) mailing list.
  • Enter your email address.
  • Behold! You're now on the Subscriber Freebies page.
  • Click on the ebook format you prefer.


Lara Beneshan and Tasha Turner like this update.


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    1. Tasha Turner

      The cover looks fantastic. John O'Neil writes great blurbs. Congrats.