As I blogged back in February (can you use the verb “blog” that way? I’m doing it) myself and twelve other authors have been putting together a sci-fi and fantasy anthology centered on the themes of grief, healing, and hope. Last time I posted, the project was still funding on Kickstarter and we hadn’t settled on a final cover design or public release date. Hence this follow-up to share the official cover, pre-order link, and release date for those who missed the Kickstarter.
My entry in the anthology, “Death in the Uncanny Valley”, is my first and probably last ever stab at writing a video game story, so if that sounds interesting, you might want to grab a copy. If that doesn’t get you hype, I would mention that my fellow authors were considerably more ambitious and personal with their stories than I was. On the basis of their excellent work, I do still recommend that you pre-order a copy.
Below the divider, you’ll find the official pre-order info and cover reveal post.
Here be dragons and sorcery, time travel and sorrow. Vicious garden gnomes. A grounded phoenix rider. A new mother consumed with vengeance. A dying god. Soul magic. These stories wrestle with the experience of loss—of loved ones, of relationships, of a sense of self, of health—and forge a path to hope as characters fight their way forward. From bestsellers and SPFBO finalists to rising voices, 13 exceptionally talented authors explore the many facets of grief and healing through the lens of fantasy and sci-fi.
Title: The Alchemy of Sorrow Public release date: Nov. 1st 2022 ISBNs for all editions: eBook – 978-1-952667-92-3, Hardcover – 978-1-952667-93-0, Paperback – 978-1-952667-94-7, Audiobook – 978-1-952667-95-4 Editors: Sarah Chorn – lead editor, Virginia McClain – acquiring editor/coordinator Authors: M.L. Wang, K.S. Villoso, Intisar Khanani, Sonya M. Black, Angela Boord, Levi Jacobs, Krystle Matar, Virginia McClain, Quenby Olson, Carol A. Park, Madolyn Rogers, Rachel Emma Shaw & Clayton Snyder Publisher: Crimson Fox Publishing Ebook Pre-Order Link:https://books2read.com/AoS Print and audio pre-orders coming soon!
About the Cover Design
For the cover of The Alchemy of Sorrow, we wanted to create an image that was evocative of all the stories contained within its pages, without being specific to any single one of them.
Since most of our stories have female protagonists, we chose to center the image on a grieving woman. We wanted her to be a woman of color, to celebrate the diversity of our stories and authors, and to represent the majority of the world’s population. We asked the artist to portray her standing among ruins, with her grief transmuting into light, which in turn begins to transform her surroundings.
We also took inspiration from the Japanese practice of kintsugi – in which a fractured piece of pottery is restored using precious metals mixed into the lacquer so that the item’s cracks become a beautiful feature of the piece rather than a flaw to be hidden away – and we asked if the woman’s skin could feature cracks lined with gold.
From those sketchy details, Zoe Badini conceived of this stunning image of a woman standing before a broken stained-glass window, with light coming from the cracks in her skin. The light forms swallows, a symbol of rebirth, and renews the dying jasmine around her.
After receiving Zoe’s gorgeous artwork, the task then went to Virginia to design a text layout that didn’t detract from it. She did her best to convey all the information necessary and make it legible without obscuring too much of the artwork.