Or, My Literary Idol Used the Same Cover Art…
A Re-Share for Julie Valerie’s Hump Day Blog Hop!
A funny thing happened to me while I was searching for “Margaret Atwood” on Kobo:
Anyone who has known me for the past thirty or so years knows I’m obsessed with Margaret Atwood. That Surfacing still surfaces in me sometimes to unhinge me. That The Handmaid’s Tale blew my mind, and is always a handy reference for when people don’t treat women so nicely. That Cat’s Eye still creeps into my consciousness years after I’ve read it.
I’m a FAN.
And anyone who knows me, or knows of me, essentially anyone I’ve begged, cajoled, harassed, annoyed to buy my first novel over the past three years (when I initially self-published it and then again when it got picked up by Diversion Books), probably sees this when they close their eyes and someone says my name:
But Margaret Atwood!
Such big shoes to fill… An author in whose footsteps I’ve always wanted to follow…
Okay, you get it. So what now?
What’s an indie author of quirky women’s fiction to do when the indelible imagery of her first wacky book will now no longer be fully hers? Now that a superstar, a goddess of letters, will also be using it? What’s a girl to do?
Here’s what her story’s about (Byliner; May 2013):
In the seemingly well-adjusted world of Consilience, it’s dawning on the residents that they’ve thrown away the keys to more than their ragged former lives outside the high walls of their gated community. When they volunteered for this new social experiment, they also gave away the keys to their destinies, even their hearts.
Ask Charmaine and she’ll tell you her husband is a dead man. Sure, marriage can be murder, but when Charmaine plunged a deadly hypodermic needle into Stan, because it was part of her job–dispatching undesirables in Positron Prison–Stan survived. His former jailer, a libidinous security chief named Jocelyn, had switched out the death drugs for knockout drugs and drafted him into a plot to undo the increasingly sinister social scheme. In so doing, she promoted him from her sexual plaything to full-blown subversive. The underground is housed in a manufacturing plant of one of Consilience’s most successful products: sexbots, made to order.
Love, however, is not made to order, and despite a Darwinian labyrinth of betrayal after betrayal, including wild extramarital encounters and, yes, murder, Stan can’t stop thinking about Charmaine. Not only because someone has requested a sexbot replica of her but because, well, she’s home in a world without homes. In “The Heart Goes Last,” one of Atwood’s darkest and most deviously entertaining inventions yet, the human heart proves more resilient and true than any mail-order machine.
And here’s what mine’s about (Diversion Books; May 2012):
Amy Miller gets dumped on her wedding day and everyone knows it’s for the best her relationship with David had eaten away at her for years. Except for Amy… When her best friend, Jane Austen-Rabinowitz, and Jane’s sagacious six-year-old daughter, Zoe, convince Amy to treat herself to an extravagantly priced, super-cute pair of shoes, which purportedly once belonged to a siren of the silver screen, she balks at first, but their allure soon wears her down. Once they are hers, her life turns around. She gets refocused on her career and meets a true kindred spirit, the also-jilted English professor, Decklin Thomas. She’s not attracted to Deck at first. But when circumstances lead to them spending more time together, they bond, and Amy starts to believe she may have found her soul mate. But when Deck’s former wife goes missing, again, the perfect romance may not be what it seems…
Sparkly and witty as a 1940s screwball comedy, and filled with quirky characters and lots of delightful surprises, Rita Hayworth’s Shoes is a story of bouncing back, a heartwarming and potentially heartbreaking romance, and even a mystery rolled into one fun, hilarious page-turner.
So I gotta ask… Just like the magazines do…
Who wore it better?
Please leave me a comment and let me know what you think. I promise, I won’t be too devastated if you like hers better. I mean, come on… She’s freaking Margaret Atwood! My favorite Canadian writer just after Samantha Stroh Bailey. 🙂 (Whose cover looks nothing like ours. But who gets to be in this article because in all honesty, she’s the one who found the Atwood cover.)