I’ve just completed my umpteenth book cover (actually, I think this makes 21 — you can see the rest here) for Nebula-Award winning author Elizabeth Ann Scarborough! It’s for her upcoming sixth book of the Songs from the Seashell Archives series, set in a mythical and magical country called Argonia. I made a map of it for the last book, which you can see here.
This illustration was actually a collaboration with the author; she sketched out a rough design in a bead pattern program (she’s also a very talented bead artist) and I made it into a pen and ink drawing, which I coloured and lettered in Photoshop. We may change the lettering later, but she needed a fully-functional cover now for a Kickstarter she’ll be running to fund the publication, as she did the last one.
The seashells of the Seashell Archives are Argonia’s version of information storage. Specially trained magical technicians can file and play back stories, music, records, etc. that are contained in conch and cowrie shells. There are emancipated dragons, long-dead wizards, ghost cats, and good witches for the four points of the compass. And I do believe she mentioned mermaids, mm-hm!
And that’s all I know, as of now — I haven’t read this book yet. Usually I like to read a book first and pick a scene, but since this series has a heraldic theme to the covers, her sketch and my knowledge of the characters from the previous book was enough to get me going. I’ll be posting more when her Kickstarter campaign goes live!