If you follow the SF/F blogs and so forth, you’re probably aware of the “discussion” being waged over the depiction of women on our covers. I use the quotes because what could be an important exchange of ideas usually goes to strident name-calling and wild accusations at warp speed. I’ve stopped reading the posts and the comments because they make me angry. I’m starting revisions for FORTUNE’S BLIGHT and I’m already angry enough at myself for a thousand points of sucking to tack anything else on.
It’s hard for me to jump into these forums and yell, “Here’s my cover! Someone’s getting it right!” without looking like a super-icky self-promoter, so I want to take a moment here to raise a cheer to Tor, art director Irene Gallo, editor Stacy Hill, and artist Kekai Kotaki for getting the cover of BLOOD’S PRIDE so very, very right. The depiction of the character is amazingly true to the text, right down to her wardrobe (not at all something to be taken for granted); she’s in a perfectly natural and quite powerful pose; she’s compelling, and I think pretty damned sexy without being objectified.
In fact, if you tried to objectify her, I’m pretty sure she’d cut you. With your own knife.
Of course not everyone likes this cover, which is ABSOLUTELY FINE. People like what they like. No biggee. Really. I know for a fact that there are people out there who have chosen not to read the book because the cover was such a turn-off to them. But if you’re looking for an example of another way to depict women on SF/F covers, I think this is an excellent one. So have at it.
Seriously, though – she will cut you.