Book news, finally!

Wow, it has been a while since we’ve updated! Sorry about that. Marzio and I have been busy applying polish to The Tendrils of Fate and working on a bunch of fascinating projects. We’ve decided to split The Tendrils of Fate into a Duology which will consist of The Tendrils of Fate (Book I), and The Unseen Hand (Book II).

We’ve developed a detailed and robust plot outline for the third book. The story will pick up after the Epilogue and will contain all of your favorite characters and a few new ones that you are sure to like! We are super stoked by what we have concocted and have already begun crafting it.

Book III of the Illumidar will be titled, The Lair of Shadows.

We are renaming the series to “The Illumidar Trilogy.” What’s an Illumidar? You will find out in Book III, and we promise it will blow your mind!

When we split the book, we realized that we needed new covers for the trilogy. I went back to Emily Hare, the artist who did our beautiful first cover, but she told us she no longer works in that style. After contacting a few other fantasy artists and coming up short (both in style and budget), I decided to tackle the covers myself.

The first cover took me a whole week. I’m rusty when it comes to digital painting. The second flowed much more easily. In these new covers, I wanted scenes that were more intimate and rendered well in tiny mobile screens. Amazon, Wattpad, and many other websites, display book covers at less than 100px across, so it was essential to achieve impact in a small space. I also wanted to tie the covers together across the trilogy and decided that water and mist were the way to go. Believe me, I debated the pink color of the magical effect in Book I but always kept coming back to it. Avaren’s glamouring should feel much more benign than the Fate’s shapeshifting dark magic. The water took me a long time to paint, but the mood is fantastic. I’m stoked about these covers. No idea how I pulled these off.

The horizontal layout takes into account the back of the printed book. Yes, I said printed book. I want to feel these books in my hand so bad.

The Lair of Shadows cover is not finished, but I wanted to show you guys the concept sketch. Every book cover starts out with an idea which may go through several revisions before it feels right. In the case of these covers, I played around with different layouts using low res images. The Unseen Hand, for example, went through various iterations before the final. In one concept, I had a cloaked woman holding two Thrarttas cards, but having playing cards felt too literal. The idea that finally hit home was one in which her face was not visible, and The Hand of Fate was juxtaposed against a raging storm. Painting all those little rain droplets was fun. I wanted to incorporate the three moons but finally gave up on the idea when the composition started to feel too busy. It’s good to know when you’ve gone too far with your artwork. Simple sometimes is better.

I’d love to hear your takes on these covers! Do they excite you? Would you buy the books?

Thanks for stopping by!