The Bystanders, by Dawn Major: Coming April 2023

Image provided by Mandy Haynes, creator, designer, editor, and publisher of WELL READ MAGAZINE

So, you have written a book. You even have a contract to publish your book. You know your settings, the buildings that make up your town, you have travelled every footpath and road, but you can’t find that perfect image for your cover that expresses your overall narrative. While your publisher will provide an image, you’re wondering if it’s going to be the right one. Let’s face it; readers judge a book by its cover. I certainly do!

That’s where I stand right now. Photos of the real town and surrounding area along with my fictional settings are swirling through my head. But the crucial, that ever so important cover art, alludes me. How can I start promoting without an image? No one is going to click on a blank page, right?

This is my approach. One, I have a theme that runs throughout the book. Can you guess it? Yes, the bystander effect. Two, the story is about a town and that town’s reaction to new arrivals, but it also about the response those newbies have towards their new home. So, I built a collage of images and hope and pray the cover artist gets my vision.

Fellow writer, new friend, creator, designer, editor, and publisher of WELL READ MAGAZINE, Mandy Haynes, offered this image of a cover reveal while I ponder what best fits The Bystanders. If you click this LINK, and click tp pages 34 & 34, you’ll see an image of one of the real settings of the Dew Drop Inn circa 1980s and you can read a synopsis of my story.

One great option I hadn’t realized was available is to create a mock or a temporary cover. You can start promoting and get the opinion from your readers. So, the great experiment begins.

Please share with your friends and on social media!

WELL READ Magazine to Publish a Four-Part Series on Southern Author, William Gay

William Gay

A few months ago, I received a FB message from the editor-in-chief of WELL READ Magazine, Mandy Haynes, asking if I would be interested in writing a feature on the late, Southern Author, William Gay. If you know anything about me, that’s like asking a kid if he/she wants cupcakes for breakfast. Would I ever?!?!

There’s so much to say about William, from his lyrical prose, his artwork, his Southern legendarium, to where he places among the great Southern authors. I’ve wanted one place to house all of these topics for years. And it’s with the utmost pleasure that I can say this wish is being fulfilled by WELL READ. Not only one article, but four!

The first article, provided by lead archivist, biographer, and friend, J.M. White, begins with when he received the news that William Gay had passed away and discusses the undertaking the archive took to gather, edit, and ultimately publish Gay’s posthumous works. This piece is an excellent foray into the archival process. Plus, there’s a real story here. What an act of love it was for Gay’s friends to endeavor upon this journey!

In 2018, I came into the picture while I was writing my master critical thesis on the speculative elements in Gay’s work. I interviewed Michael White. I haven’t been able to let go, and it was great honor to later become part of the archive.

To read the full story in WELL READ Magazine, click this LINK AND please spread the word about William Gay by posting on social media and sharing with friends.

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