Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Following in the Grand Tradition of Sci-Fi

Having been weaned on science fiction and fantasy at an early age, I have fond memories of the great book covers that held the stories of adventurers, threatening aliens, and monstrous robots.  And since I just published my first novel-length science fiction romance novel, The Klockwerk Kraken, I wanted to go back to my childhood and see how my cover stacks up against some of those classics.

First off, you have to understand that many science fiction covers have one huge thing in common with romance novel covers.

They show a lot of skin.

Take for example this cover of a book by Jonathan Fast from 1977. It's a Boris Vallejo painting and he is an artist well know for focusing on the nude body.
Or maybe you like tattoos? I still have my copy of this Ray Bradbury book. At the tender age of ten, this 1976 cover was the closest thing I had ever seen to a naked man.
Of course, most covers had more naked (or scantily clad) women than men due to the misguided notion that the only readers of hard science fiction and fantasy were straight men.
But on the whole, science fiction was rather egalitarian with the naked bodies. There were plenty of nude guys to satiate my curiosity.



So how does my cover stack up? Well it definitely has a little of the feel of a classic scifi in that my protagonist is showing a lot of skin and he has tentacles.  Overall, I think it may even hearken back to those old book covers I loved when I was young.

I hope you'll check out my novel, The Klockwerk Kraken, available from MLR Press. It's about a desperate bartender willing to use all his wiles (and tentacles) in order to keep his bar open--even if that means helping a greenie space pilot buy his first ship. And as for that greenie space pilot, the only thing on his mind is being able to escape into the void of space away from everyone and everything that's ever hurt him. But the heart has its own tentacles and they will always reach for the one it wants.


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