Warning: The images below contain some spoilers regarding the plot of Hereville book 2. Then again, so does, you know, the actual cover to the book.
So when I started work on the cover to book 2, everyone (“everyone” in this case meaning me, the folks at Abrams (my editor Sheila and book designer Chad Beckerman) and my agent Judy Hasen) were agreed that we wanted a cover that looked enough like book 1’s cover so that it would be obviously in the same series at a glance, but different enough so that no one would mistake it for the first book.
So, things to keep from book 1’s cover: Big round object. Tiny Mirka (or Mirkas). The banner for the title and author lettering. Things to be different: Everything else.
So I thought of every cover idea I could and sent quick sketches of those ideas to Abrams. Pretty much all of those ideas were variations on “meteor shooting through space, Mirka sitting on or being dragged along behind it.” But I also threw in a few not involving a meteor, because I didn’t want to forclose other possibilities, even though I was pretty sure we’d wind up with a meteor.
Then the folks at Abrams discussed it, or perhaps consulted their magic eight balls (a not-unlikely subject of a future Hereville cover), and agreed that they liked a shooting meteorite dragging a panicked Mirka best.
We also sent emails back and forth playing around with several color approaches. I showed them a few possibilities — sky blue, dark blue, red, etc — and although I was secretly hoping for red, I thought they’d choose blue (a more conservative choice), and I could live with that. To my delight, they chose red.
So now knowing the subject of the drawing and the color scheme, I did some more sketches and sent them to Abrams:
I do these sketches not only for Abrams’ sake but for my own — it’s hard for me to feel that I really know what I think about a cover composition unless I first sketch it out.
On Monday I’ll post the final cover art!