“Where I Found Unique Inspiration for My Book Cover” Guest Post by Anita Dickason Author of “Sentinels of the Night”

I’m welcoming former Dallas police officer, turned author, Anita Dickason to my website today. Anita is the author of three books – one non-fiction and two fiction – and the creator of the popular FBI Trackers crime book series.

Anita shared some information with me about finding her inspiration while designing the book cover for “Sentinels of the Night”. She had plenty of great information to share so let’s get started!

I enjoy reading the myths of Native American Indians along with Scottish and Irish folklore. It is amazing how many stories have the same elements that span time and miles, even continents.

As an avid fiction reader, I gravitate toward characters with an extra edge, a special ability to overcome adversity and danger.

When I decided to write a novel, the genre, suspense/thriller, wasn’t an issue. I’d write about what I know. As a retired cop, that is crime and how police work. Still, I wanted my characters to have special abilities, something extraordinary and unique. I turned to myths and legends, and it was there I found the paranormal gifts for my characters.

Sentinels of the Night is based on a Native American myth. I found a woman, Alice C. Fletcher (1838-1923) who studied the Indian culture. She lived among the tribes and translated their stories and the chants used in their ceremonial dances, and wrote a book. I used a quote from a translated chant at the start of Sentinels of the Night. Owls are believed to be the guardians of the night and the messengers of death. Their appearance, especially in the daylight hours, means someone has died. Their screech is considered to signal a violent death, even murder. Dying is crossing over the owl’s bridge.

I am a graphics designer and design book covers. The cover design for Sentinels of the Night is mine. Every element in the cover speaks to the storyline.

Two sets of owls’ eyes are visible in the night sky. The owls see and know as they guard the night, and their presence is the link to FBI Tracker Cat Morgan’s unique gift. A third owl is flying in front of a blood-red moon sinking into a red sea. As the hunt for the killer intensifies, Cat’s mystic link to the owls deepens. She struggles to understand the gruesome images in her dreams of owls flying, moons dripping with blood, and falling into a pit filled with blood.

Someone coined a phrase, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” I hope the cover for Sentinels of the Night will entice a reader to want to learn more.

For more information on Sentinels of the Night and the second Tracker novel, Going Gone!, please see my website or the book trailers:

www.anitadickason.com

Sentinels of the Night: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m00v2W4K4o

Going Gone!: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGI9MzkBkSE

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About Robert Germaux

Both my parents were readers. I'm talking stacks-of-books-on-their-nightstands readers. So it's no surprise that an early age, I, too, became an avid reader. Everything from sports books (especially baseball) to Nancy Drew to the Hardy Boys to almost anything about distant and exotic places. And although I've always enjoyed putting words on paper, the writer in me didn't fully emerge until I retired after three decades of teaching high school English. I quickly wrote two books aimed at middle school readers, at which point my wife urged me to try a novel for adults. As is usually the case, Cynthia's idea was a good one. Over the next few years, I wrote several books about Pittsburgh private eye Jeremy Barnes, including “Hard Court” and the soon-to-be-released “In the Eye.” I also wrote “Small Talk” and “One by One,” both featuring Pittsburgh police detective Daniel Hayes. Along the way, I took a brief hiatus from the detective genre to write “The Backup Husband,” the plotline of which came to me one day when I was playing the What-if game. On that particular day, the question that occurred to me was, What if a woman suddenly realized she might be in love with two wonderful men? I also tried my hand at writing humorous essays, which resulted in “Grammar Sex (and other stuff).” At the moment, I’m putting the finishing touches on “In the Eye” and writing essays for “More Grammar Sex.” In our spare time, Cynthia and I enjoy reading (of course), seeing Broadway plays and musicals, watching reruns of our favorite TV shows, such as "Sports Night" and "The Gilmore Girls," and traveling to some of those distant and exotic places I used to read about as a child. So far, we've been fortunate enough to walk in the sands of Waikiki, swim in the warm waters of the South Pacific and enjoy a romantic dinner in Paris. I love interacting with my readers and getting their input on my stories and characters. Please feel free to contact me at Germaux1@aol.com
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