Look Familiar? It Should.

Posted: August 30, 2010 in Uncategorized

I’ve had a lot of people send me links to this book by UK author Wayne Simmons:

FLU, by Wayne Simmons.

Most of the time they email me and ask if I gave permission for my cover to be used by someone else. One or two people have emailed me asking if I checked with Wayne (and his publisher, Snow Books) before I used his cover. One kindly fellow emailed me and told me I was a “bloody thiefing piece of shit” and that he was going to report me to the police.

How nice. 🙂 People are noticing the book. Heh heh.

So here’s the skinny, folks. The person who created my cover used a background image from iStockPhoto.com. These are royalty free images, and for a nominal fee you can purchase the right to use them as book covers, mousepads, tabelcloths, a T-Shirt, etc. But they are not exclusive licenses, which means 2 people can pay to use the same image. Or three people. Or a dozen, etc. In fact, there are two other books I know of and a zombie DVD that use this same basic image as a cover.

Think that’s rare? Nope. This sort of thing happens quite a lot, especially now in the digital printing age. If you check out the blog Stumbling Over Chaos, you’ll see the blogger has a regular feature called Misadventures in Stock Photography. Check it out. Some of it is real funny.

So, anyway, back to FLU and 33 A.D.

I emailed Wayne and Emma Stone of Snow Books the moment I found out about the similarity between our two covers. Emma informed me of the same thing I just told you. This sort of thing happens. She’s actually quite nice, and I kinda wish I’d known about them before I self-published because they seem like they run a real nice outfit. Wayne took the news with a laugh and a virtual shrug. “What can you do?”

Nothing. 🙂 I paid for my cover, Snow Books paid for his, and by golly, we’re gonna use ’em.

One very nice thing about this is that Wayne and I both have a good sense of humor about it. He even offered to buy me a beer if we ever meet up at a convention. I intend to take him up on it. I’m not a big beer drinker, but FREE beer? Oh, yeah. Gimme. Just as long as it’s not Guinness or some such mess.

So anyway, Wayne and I agreed long ago to trade signed copies of our books. I sent mine a while ago, but Wayne is quite a bit busier than I am. Still, he did find the time to sign a fresh copy just for me and stick it in the mail. Here are a few pics:

See? I told you he had a sense of humor about it. Check out what he wrote. We do have the same hairdresser. I think his name is Bic.


Thanks, Wayne, for the book and for the laugh. It’s an honor sharing a book cover with you, sir.

  1. Chris says:

    Thanks for the mention! It’s great that you and Wayne saw the humor in the shared image and connected over it. And… really, if you’re the only two using that image? You’re both lucky. 🙂

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