The #cover of The Secret of Hillcrest House ~ how it came to be

The creation of a #cover

How many of you liked to tell or read ghost stories when you were younger? I know I sure did. Most of the time, the stories involved an old, spooky looking house. If said building had a turret on it, when we were kids, that automatically screamed “haunted”. If it happened to be empty and dilapidated – broken windows, sagging porch, peeling paint – then so much the better.

I first saw the house that graces the cover of the book when I went as a chaperone on my son’s school trip to Quebec City back in 1993. Since then, every time we’ve been in the area, I’ve always had to drive by it and take pictures. I knew that eventually that house and the village it’s in would become the setting for one of my books, I just didn’t know how it would come about. The most recent trip was in November 2014 when I took a number of photographs of it from the streets to encompass as much of the house as possible.

“Hillcrest House” November 2014

Yes, the house in the picture above looks somewhat spooky, but a change to Black & White made a huge difference, followed by making the sky transparent. I had an idea of what I wanted for the background so I scoured the stock photo sites and finally decided on a full moon and cloudy sky image from Shutterstock.

After the special effects

Don’t you agree that this layered image makes the house look haunted?

Step in Julie Jordan. She put a black border around the picture so that the lightning rod on the turret didn’t get cut off in the trimming process and so that the title didn’t cover more than just the turret. Julie tells me that from the time she saw the photo-shopped image, she saw the finished product. The font was her idea as was the colour. It really pops, doesn’t it.

Before I bore your readers any more than I already have, here’s the finished cover and book blurb.



Sometimes there’s more to a house than bricks and mortar.

Hillcrest House is one such place. Perched on a cliff in the picturesque town of Angel Falls, there is more to this Victorian mansion than meets the eye. When referring to the house, the locals use the word haunted on a regular basis. Strange visions appear in the windows, especially the second-floor ones over the side porch. Even stranger events take place within its four walls.

Rumour has it, the original owners, Asher and Maggie Hargrave, never left their beloved home. They claim the couple and their family are responsible for driving people away. Over the years, Hillcrest House has changed hands numerous times. No one stays long. Renovations begin then stop and the house is once more abandoned. The latest in this long line of owners is Jessica Maitland.

Will Jessica be the next one to succumb or will she unravel the mystery of the haunting of Hillcrest House?
Melanie Robertson-King’s latest novel serves up a delightful blend of the supernatural and spicy romance, Lynn L. Clark, author of The Home Child, and Fire Whisperer & Circle of Souls: Two Novellas of the Supernatural, & The Accusers

Intrigue, dark buried secrets, hot romance and a neat twist in the tale make this riveting reading, Sheryl Browne, MA Creative Writing, Choc Lit Author

A fun read that keeps you guessing right up to the surprise ending, Dayna Leigh Cheser, Author of Janelle’s Time, Moria’s Time, Adelle’s Time, & Logan’s Time


Buy Links:

amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo