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