Book cover illustration by Duncan Long for John Backus novel

Got an interesting email from self-publishing author John Backus about his new novel. The book has been meeting with amazing success. I find John’s experience interesting because it paints a picture of what I think the future of publishing is soon likely to be: Authors putting their own stories into print, then shepherding them to success while pocketing most of the earnings.

John gave me permission to publish parts of his message on my blog, so here goes…

I thought you might be interested to know that Hunter-After The Fall, Book One, has been steadily climbing the bestseller ranks since its publication in August, 2010. Every day, scores of people are ordering it all over the world! From humble beginnings we have risen to the #1 bestselling “post apocalyptic” title on Amazon out of 400+ titles as a paperback, and #1 bestselling ebook out of 140+ titles in the Kindle store, and have broken into three different top 100 bestseller categories.

Not too bad for a no-name writer’s first novel, eh? I am convinced that your brilliantly executed cover art has been instrumental in catching the shopper’s eye, when looking for that next great read. Thanks again for your superlative artistic efforts and well-grounded technical advice which you offered so generously. You are, without question, a world-class talent with tremendous imaginative and mechanical skills expressed so evocatively in your art.

I wish you good health, an extra helping of grace, and a fat wallet — because God knows you deserve them all.

I’d encourage science fiction fans to check out John’s book Hunter-After The Fall, Book One — and buy a copy if you’re interested in a good read.

I’ve already created the cover for John’s second book in the series, and it was just as amazing a concept as his first cover. Now I’m looking forward to seeing what the third will be like.

Duncan Long is a freelance magazine and book illustrator who did the book cover illustration for John Backus’ science fiction novel Hunter-After The Fall, Book One. See more of Long’s book illustrations at: