So here it is:
Now that I'm done bragging, let me give you a little background on the cover. Some authors are sent a cover design questionnaire (as I was for my short story "Scarecrow"), or they communicate directly with the designers or indirectly through the editor. In other cases--like mine--the author's input is the manuscript itself, which the editor discusses with the designers to produce the cover.
So in my case, I did not directly or indirectly discuss this particular image with the design folks at Margaret K. McElderry Books (my publisher). My editor, Karen Wojtyla, handled those discussions. And yet, I couldn't be more thrilled with the way the design team captured both the "look" and the "feel" of the story; in fact, when I imagined what the cover might look like, I imagined it very much like the final image! The desert backdrop, the shadowy figure, even the way the number "9" forms such a prominent part of the overall design--all of those aspects were in my mind when I dreamed of my ideal cover. Which either goes to show that my story translates readily to image--which would be good--or that everyone at McElderry is totally on the same page about this book--which would also be good!
Whatever the case, I can't wait to see the real thing on bookstore shelves!
While we're waiting, you might consider adding the book to your shelf on Goodreads, or liking my author page on Facebook.
Because September 23, 2014 will be here before you know it!