A MALEVOLENT Presence Lurks

My next horror novel, MALEVOLENT, will be released by Samhain Publishing in ebook format on July 3. It then comes our in trade paperback in November.

I’ve been highly impressed by Don D’Auria, my editor of Samhain Horror. Don makes it a point to involve his authors in such critical matters as book jacket art and blurb copy. He starts the process by sending out an art request form in which he asks about key scenes, visual hooks and plot devices that help suggest a cover.

For MALEVOLENT, I noted the key scenes in which three women are virtually held captive in their home and surrounded by hungry house cats who grow increasingly vicious at the passage of time without food. While this is only one plot point of many in the book, it struck me as being visually intriguing.

It struck Don and his art editor the same way. Here’s the cover they came up with:

Nice, huh? But as chilling and dramatic as it was, it seemed to me that the art made MALEVOLENT a story about an evil cat…and that wasn’t right. I loved the cover, but asked if they could come up with something that somewhat minimized the visual pull of the cat. No problem. A day or two later they sent me this:

Perfect! We still see a sinister-looking cat, but now there’s a church in the background, suggesting yet another direction the tale takes. While this still doesn’t represent all of the paths the story takes, readers no longer have reason to think I’ve written CAT PEOPLE 2. And here’s the best point: if someday I do write that evil cat book, I’ll have a great ready-made cover for it.

If you’d like to read the first chapter of MALEVOLENT, or pre-order this new horror novel, visit my book page at Samhain Publishing.


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