Receiving The Cover Before Writing The Story


I had been considering writing a short story taking place in the world of The Rotten Apple for some time now, but I had always figured I would write it after The Rotten Apple was published. Just to keep things fresh and new while I work on the book’s sequel, which is still currently untitled.

However, about two days ago I got hit with some inspiration, and I decided I was going to write a prequel short story called The Crimson Apple, taking place before the events in The Rotten Apple. And, alas, it was born. I had no idea what I was going to do about artwork for the cover. I set a release date for March 8 to prep and polish a 10,000 word short story, so I had better get something figured out quick.

And that’s exactly what I did. I had no trouble finding an image to use, and a short while later I had developed a cover:

The Crimson Apple Cover

And I have to say, I’m pretty proud of how this turned out. It’s close enough in resemblance to The Rotten Apple‘s cover to see they’re related, but I think their pretty easy to distinguish from each other.

This is also the first time I’ve ever had the cover of a story before actually writing it. Neil Gaiman mentions how the same thing happened to him with American Gods. He had a title and a cover, but no story.

So, now I just have to finish the story. I’m just shy of 2,000 words into it, and I like where it’s going. Here’s the description of it:

The city is seething with scumbags and slime balls. Darkness is not only a characteristic of night, but something the druggies and prostitutes and gangsters embodied as they searched the city, selling drugs and sex and guns, keeping The Big Apple’s police force awake and churning at all hours. The filth of the city lingered in dark alleys and hid in the shadows, lurking and plotting and scheming, trying to make their way in that dark city the best way they knew how.

Naomi Blake, police officer for the NYPD, patrols the city with her partner, Rex, searching for the scum lingering in the shadows. Doing their duty to keep their city safe.

But, when a killer starts leaving mutilated bodies as a calling card, the city gets even darker. The Big Apple turns crimson.

Officer Blake must bring an end to the monster terrorizing the city, leaving only blood, pain, and death in his wake.

But at what cost?

What do you think? I’m really excited to get it finished and out to the world! And I’m hoping it’ll get people even more excited for The Rotten Apple!

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