How long have you been writing?
As a lawyer, much of my twenty-two year career was based upon writing – writing to persuade, inform, clarify, or summarize. It’s one of the most enjoyable aspects of my job. I published my first non-fiction book, a guide for new lawyers, in 2001, and a second non-fiction book geared toward law students in 2003.
I started writing a third non-fiction book in 2004, but I soon realized it would have more impact as a work of fiction. It took many more years to learn the craft of fiction writing and eventually bring that work to fruition. The resulting novel is ‘Green City Savior’.
What got you started writing?
There were two aspects to the start of my fiction writing career. The first is that I had been researching my hometown’s environmental history and writing about it helped me process what I was learning. I started researching because I noticed that a lot of relatively young people in my hometown of Niagara Falls, New York, including me, were dealing with cancer or other serious diseases.
It dawned on me that I shouldn’t know that many people with debilitating illnesses. My gut told me that something wasn’t right. My research eventually led to Green City Savior, my environmentally themed suspense novel set in Niagara Falls. The second is my Christian faith. I believe that God has gifted each of us in unique ways, and I felt led to follow that strong desire to write these stories that had gotten a hold of my heart.
What was your experience regarding creating a cover. Did you try to make one yourself?
My experience working with Peter at BespokeBookCovers so far exceeded my expectations that I cannot say enough good things about his work and artistry. I originally took a cover design that I had rigged up to a graphic designer. He had some limited experience doing book covers. We worked together for several weeks, but he couldn’t capture the look and feel I wanted.
I knew I wanted a cover that conveyed a sense of hope; that restoration was on its way to this beleaguered city. Peter captured that on the very first attempt. In fact, once he sent me the first draft, we only added two small features to the front cover and that was that. Not only did he create an eye-catching cover, but Peter created a brand out of the way the colors, clouds, and birds all worked together.
How did you find Peter?
Peter did a spectacular cover for another American author I know. She, too, had gone elsewhere and never liked the cover for the first edition of her book. I contacted Peter the very day that I saw her new one—and of course, Peter responded immediately with all the details I needed to get started. The process was incredibly fun and painless. He is a pro through and through.
Did you have any fears or reservations when searching for a designer?
Yes, I did. I had already used up my budget for the book cover and design when I contacted Peter. After looking at samples of his work, however, I decided that I would take one more chance on another designer – the book had to have a cover after all. I was also worried that I wouldn’t be able to communicate my desire for a sense of hope on the cover. It’s not an easy thing to explain. Peter got it, and delivered exactly the vision I’d hoped for on my cover.
What attracted you to BespokeBookCovers?
I went straight to BespokeBookCovers’ website after seeing the cover Peter had done for the author I mentioned above. The covers featured on Peter’s website were extremely professional and met every requirement that I use when judging book contests – they looked great as a thumbnail, they were readable from a distance, they featured a focal point, and they were not overly complicated or literal. I was impressed.
What was the process like working with them?
Working with BespokeBookCovers was an absolutely wonderful experience. It’s unusual in this day and age to have someone return every email and respond to your questions promptly. Peter did that and more. He delivered exactly what he said he was going to deliver, and did it on time and error-free. He offered thoughtful feedback.
He made suggestions for the publishing and marketing of my book, and helped me finalize various distribution aspects of the novel. More than that, he created a “look and feel” for the book that is now instantly recognizable on social media. Peter loves what he does and it shows through in his work.
How did you feel about the result?
It’s beautiful. I love the cover, as well as the overall branding and high resolution graphics that developed from the cover. And I love what it says about my novel – something unique and hopeful awaits the reader inside.
What difference has the cover design made to your success?
The cover and overall branding has made a tremendous difference, particularly since I had a different cover before I went to BespokeBookCovers. The proof for me was that my children actually wanted to read the book after seeing the new one designed by Peter.
Many, many people on social media have commented positively on the cover. It’s made all the difference in terms of grabbing people’s interest. I cannot thank you enough, Peter.