You are never too old to learn a new trick. Over the Thanksgiving holiday I did just that: learned how to create a cover using Microsoft Word. Now, I will be the first to tell you design is NOT my forte, however, things came together and before I knew it, I’d spent a pleasurable two days tinkering with the design elements, watching Youtube videos, and cursing loudly as my learning curve escalated.
A friend of mine had said she’d do the cover for my Christmas novella. She’s done the covers to my other two Christmas stories, so I thought it would be great to continue the tradition. Then the image I got for the couple was difficult for her to drop the background on. My daughter volunteered (ok, I volunteered her) to do that pic. She sent the couple to me to send to my friend, and I thought, “Hey, I think I could do this.” (Famous last words. That’s exactly how I started to write romance in the first place. LOL) So I had the elements, I’d messed around a few weeks ago with creating a meme, so I knew a very tiny bit about what to do, and so I just started to put the elements together.
Long story short, with the help–read encouragement and tons of advice–of some of my author friends, I have created what I think is a serviceable cover for my Christmas book. It won’t win any awards, but I think it will catch readers’ attention and that’s all anyone can want their cover to do.
One more note about the book itself. It began as a very short, short story that was published as ‘Tis the Season in my collection of Christmas stories, All Wrapped Up (currently free on Smashwords and B & N.) Grab your copy and read the original before the new, very expanded version is released. 🙂
So without further ado, I give you a sneak peek at my brand new cover for A Kiss Beneath the Mistletoe!
Is one kiss ever enough?
Jenny Crowley has been duped! At her eighteenth birthday celebration her parents announce that instead of having the London Season she’s dreamed of for years, Jenny has been betrothed from birth to Alexander Isley, son of family friends and heir to a title. A distraught Jenny refuses point-blank to marry Alec, and when her aunt offers to whisk her away to a Christmas house party, complete with many eligible young bachelors, Jenny jumps at the chance to enjoy a variety of entertainments, be courted, and perhaps fall in love.
Alec Isley is between a rock and a hard place. He desires a marriage with Jenny no more than she does, but when his family’s dire financial status is revealed, he follows Jenny to the house party in hopes of convincing her to marry him after all. When he discovers who else is courting her there, Alec is frantic to keep her from making a dreadful mistake. Struggling with new-found feelings for his childhood friend, can Alec convince her of his love in time to save her from being ruined under the mistletoe?
“Aunt Arabella, what is this running the mistletoe Lady Celinda told me about? I’ve not heard of it before.”
“Well, that is a bit of a story.” Her aunt laughed and linked arms with her. “It’s a custom in Marbury’s family. His mother is German and when she married, she brought a lot of those customs to England. That’s why we celebrate Christmas with a Christmas tree.”
“I’d wondered about that,” Jenny said with a smile. “Mama thought it very odd when she first heard of it.”
“Many people do, although Queen Charlotte has had one for many years.”
“Yes, I’d heard that as well. And we are to decorate it on Christmas Eve, aunt?” It sounded like a fun time. “And the Snapdragon? We will have that as well, won’t we?”
“Of course.” Aunt Arabella stopped to look around. “This way,” she called to the larger party following behind them and pointed to several large evergreen trees on her left.
“But what is running the mistletoe?” Jenny had almost forgotten about that mysterious event.
Aunt Arabella laughed, a tinkling sound in the crisp air. “You know what mistletoe is?”
Jenny nodded. She’d seen sprigs of it hung over the doorway at home at Christmas and caught her parents kissing under it a time or two.
“Well, when we come to cut greenery for the house, we also find a ball of mistletoe to take back for the doorways.” Her eyes twinkled. “Be careful going through the doorways for the next couple of weeks, Jenny. You don’t know who you’ll meet coming the opposite way. You’ll end up collecting a lot of little white berries.”
Collecting berries? How odd. “What do you mean, aunt?”
“For each kiss, the gentleman cuts off one of the berries and gives it to the young lady he kissed.”
Jenny’s cheeks heated despite the nipping cold, and her aunt laughed.
“But the ball we find out here is high off the ground. So in Germany the young men dare the ladies to run under the mistletoe. They give them a five count start and if they can catch them by the time they reach the mistletoe ball, they can claim a kiss.” Her aunt grinned and whispered, “That’s how I met Marbury.”
“Really, Aunt?” Jenny’s heart beat a little faster. Would she fall in love with someone who caught her under the mistletoe?
I’ll give you updates this week as to when this book will release–I’m hoping for Friday, December 4th, but we’ll see. Meanwhile, have a fantastic Sunday and don’t forget to visit me for Medieval Monday!