At the end of Celia and the Fairies, Paul and Celia watch as a work crew digs an enormous hole in his backyard in preparation for an inground pool. I hadn't conceived of writing a book with Paul as the lead, but one night when I was nearly asleep the thought hit me—Paul was going to find something really cool and magical in the hole! The story, now titled Secrets of the Magic Ring, practically wrote itself. That almost never happens.
I made sure that the book works as a standalone title, something that was important to me.
With each of my books, my publisher, AmazonEncore, has had me fill out a questionnaire asking for a summary of the story, the author bio, who I believe the target audience is, etc. I always have a lot of fun filling out these questionnaires. They'll ask something like, How is this book different from others of the same genre? and my answer will be that, unlike the others, I wrote this one. Ha ha ha. And then I go on to answer seriously. I like to think they appreciate my efforts to liven things up, but maybe not.
When the questionnaire asked for my input on the new cover, my response was: I would love it if the book cover is similar enough to the Celia and the Fairies cover that it's obvious they go together. How the artist decides to do that is up to them. It could be the coloring of the cover as opposed to the images being alike.
Frankly, I had no idea how they'd manage this, but I was fairly certain they'd pull it off. I've been delighted with all of my covers so far.
When I got the email from my editor, Terry, with three proposed covers attached, I liked all of them, but I loved one the most. It was nearly perfect. Luckily, Terry and I each had some thoughts for the cover designer and after a few minor tweaks, the nearly perfect cover came out just right.