I love a good fantasy world map.
Ever since I was a kid, I've been drawn to maps in books. Even now, if I book has a map, then I'm already doubly excited to read the story that goes with it. I spent a lot of time studying each geographical landmark and village name. A good map gives you a sense of the story and helps you imagine the author's world in your mind.
So when I learned that Random House Kids was publishing my children's fantasy novel, one of the first things I wanted to know was if we could include a map.
The short answer was... no.
There simply wasn't the budget to hire a illustrator.
But I didn't give up.
I first tried to draw a map myself, but that didn't end up working out (for many reasons I won't get into here).
So I looked into hiring someone. My agent gave me a list of illustrators, and as soon as I saw Sveta Dorosheva's work, I fell instantly in love. (I mean, seriously. See for yourself).
Sveta was an absolute dream to work with. We had many conversations about my book and the tone of the map (magic fantasy!) and she asked about the details of different locations and creatures in my story.
She sent me the initial sketch (which I loved) and over the next few weeks, she sent pictures of the final map in progress. Amazingly, she draws everything by hand!
As you can see, her attention to detail is out of this world. The final version of the map absolutely took my breath away.
I can honestly say that it's the most beautiful fantasy world map I have ever seen.
And I can't wait TO SHARE IT WITH YOU!
I'm actually giving a map reveal sneak preview to all of my newsletter peeps, so if you'd like to join in on the fun, you can sign up here. Also, you'll get updates and announcements on Dragonboy, my debut novel, as we approach publication day.
In the meantime, stay tuned for more map gorgeousness! ;-)