Sunday, July 8, 2018


Every so often in the life of an author, it comes time to take a breath, sit back and contemplate your career trajectory.

That's what I've been doing this year. As soon as I made the move from Ohio to North Carolina and got hooked back up to the internet, I found out Simon & Schuster decided to do away with the Crimson Romance line to focus on more mainstream fiction and non-fiction works. I sorted through my options, not ready to cut the chord and demand my rights back until I had a plan in place. I hired an agent, talked to my writing buddies, bounced ideas off anyone who would listen, and finally settled on a plan.

I could only regain the rights to four of the eleven books Simon & Schuster had. They turned out to be the first four in the Cotillion Ball series, so it made sense to me to start retooling them and spiff them up a bit. I finally decided to work with Prairie Rose Publications on them, since I didn't want the hassle of self-publishing. The first two books, The Reluctant Debutante and The Abolitionist's Secret, are scheduled to be re-released into the Amazon world in August. My past few weeks have been spent looking at stock photos and working with Prairie Rose's cover artist, the magnificent Livia Reasoner. We have this uncanny ability to home in on the same photos to use, so it's been a fairly painless process to create new, striking covers for the books.

There have been some issues, though, to deal with. Since six of the books remain with Simon & Schuster, I wanted to maintain some consistency for the series as a whole, so I couldn't steer off in a totally different direction with the covers. Crimson abandoned the sepia-tone covers along about book six, so I tried to match the new ones with the last ones in the series. A consistent font was necessary, as well as a few other elements.

That being said, I'm pleased to offer cover reveals for both The Reluctant Debutante and The Abolitionist's Secret. The real bang for the buck comes when you compare side by side the old and the new. Here, for your viewing pleasure, are the covers.

On the left is the original cover, which was released in March, 2012. Since it was my first-ever cover, I thought it was beautiful, and had it blown up on canvas and proudly displayed in my office. But the new one, on the right,  just knocked my socks off. I may have to update my wall.

The second book to be released in the series is The Abolitionist's Secret, about Ginger's younger, and less flamboyant, sister Heather. Here are the old and new versions of those covers. I'm loving the new looks of these books, and my career is once again on track. What do you think of them?


  1. Wow. It's like night and day. I showed the covers to my husband and he said that the new versions say "Look at me". He and I both think that the new releases are much more appealing. Good job!

    1. I love hubby's response. That's what I'm looking for--a cover that says "Look At Me!" And then buy me.