Whit and I were discussing some upcoming projects I’m working on, including a Christmas serial with Lisa. (I just love saying Christmas serial. It sounds like “cereal” you only get at Christmas time. I imagine it looking like Rice Krispies with little red marshmallow stars and santas.) Anyway, we started brainstorming the covers for the serial (There will be five BTW. Starting around Thanksgiving. Watch this space for updates!) which is what we do, usually months out, and laughing about what a PITA the Superstar cover was. Superstar, the book, is very near and dear to me. As I’ve said many times before, I was a black rocker chick and it was crucial to me that there be an UNAMBIGUOUSLY BLACK WOMAN on the cover of this book. As a young woman, sure I wanted to sleep with Robert Plant (and really, who didn’t?), but I wanted to BE Jimmy Page. So this was personal.
Finding a stock picture of a black woman with braids, playing a guitar and seriously rocking out was damned near impossible. Most of the pictures of women with guitars are all sex kittenish (WTF is UP with that? It’s like those half naked women with guns. Just effing annoying.) An axewoman should look badass, not fucktoy. It took me over a year of endlessly scanning stock sites. When I found this one, I bought it on the spot. Then, after all that, Whit didn’t like it. He went through all the technical issues he had with the photo while my eyes glazed over which is what happens when he starts talking about masks and shadows. Usually, when he doesn’t like a photo he won’t work with it. Keeping in mind he is working for free, most of the time I don’t complain, but in this case, I did. And, as usual, he produced what I think of as one our best covers. And yes, I know I ALWAYS say that, but this time I’m serious. One of these days when I finally get my office the way I want it, this one is going up on the wall. I love it that much.