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I know I said that I would shut up for a fortnight, but this is just too exciting to wait!  As regular readers will know, the one area in which I splash the cash in self-publishing is my covers.  Well, not mine: the covers of my books.  Although I know you shouldn’t judge a book, etc., I also know that a cover that screams “homemade on my daughter’s drawing program” or “bought cheap because it sort of matches my story” does you no favours at all.  Potential readers need to know that they are in safe and professional hands, and a quality cover image is their first indication of that.  Sadly I am blessed with the artistic capabilities of a cross-eyed walrus – I would no more design or draw my own book cover than I would rewire my own house.

Thankfully, back in the mists of time when I was working on what would become my very first self-published book, I was pointed in the direction of an outfit called Design for Writers.  Now that’s a name I can understand – they sound like experts to me.  That first book was nothing to do with Sam – it’s a non-fiction book about the prevention of money laundering, which is my day job – but Andrew at DfW immediately knew what I was on about and produced the first of many “piggy” covers.  (Here’s one of them.)  And when it came to my first foray into fiction with “Fatal Forgery” (try saying that in a hurry!) there was only one place to go.

Since then, Andrew and his wife Rebecca have been wonderful.  Each time a new Plank comes out, they take my rambling description (“well, it’s a bit darker than the last one, with a preacher, but not a Wesleyan preacher, and I need a sermon in the background – one from London if you can – and someone said that purple might look good, and no, I don’t have a title yet, until the vote closes next month”) and create a marvel from it.  And so this is really their success rather than mine, but the fantastic purple cover of “Faith, Hope and Trickery”, with the overwrought yet devilishly dishy young man emoting like billy-o, has been given an Honourable Mention rosette in the May 2018 “Cover of the Month” awards on the Discovering Diamonds book review blog.  And now I really will be quiet.  But only for a fortnight.