Sunday, January 24, 2021

From the Creators: New Books Outside the Altrix!


Decorative image of the Earth from space

We hope everyone's having a safe 2021 so far! While there are still a lot of things to do before we're clipping over at the pace we'd like to be, there are positive advances being made. Thanks to everyone who's picked up a copy of Eleanor's Tears so far. We're advancing on the third installment in the Chronosmith Chronicles series, hopefully with more news to give at a later date.

For now, we're taking a brief look outside the Altrix to show you what our creators here have been up to. First up, Paul Driscoll has become part of the Professor Howe universe! The satirical book series from Long Scarf Publications is raising funds for BBC Children in Need. His contribution, Professor Howe and the Holy Hotel, is now available for pre-order. Subscribe to get his and the rest of the 2021 titles, and do a good turn for charity:

Professor Howe 2021 releases

Speaking of charity, the Obverse Books anthology Forgotten Lives will be opening up for another round of orders! Keep an eye on the official Facebook page for more information concerning the next (and likely final) sale, especially if you missed the first window. It's a collection of all new stories expanding on the possible histories of the Morbius Doctors. Kara Dennison penned "The Gauntlet of Absolution," a mid-century sword and planet adventure for Philip Hinchcliffe's Doctor; while Paul contributes "Doctor Crocus and the Pages of Fear," featuring George Gallaccio's Doctor and illicit penny dreadfuls.

Forgotten Lives - Front cover

Thank you as ever for your support, both of Altrix and our contributing authors and fellow small press.

Friday, January 8, 2021

Eleanor's Tears: Interview with Cover Artist Ginger Hoesly


If you've been following Altrix's work for a while, you've probably seen the work of artist Ginger Hoesly. So far she's drawn and designed covers for the first of our Chronosmiths Chronicles books, Paul Driscoll's After Vincent, as well as for our charity releases Seasons of War: Gallifrey, Master Pieces, and Unearthed.

Ginger is back again for the cover of Eleanor's Tears, and she's also contributed something else to our latest book. Read on as we chat with her about the latest foray into the universe of the Chronosmiths!

For those who are new to our site, tell us a little about yourself.

My name's Ginger Hoesly; I'm a "graphic designer by day, illustrator by night" type of lady who can oftentimes be found ranting and raving about various nerd subjects, and also baseball. If you've ever wanted very strong opinions about, say, the best Elder Scrolls game, underrated pitchers in the MLB, and get a drawing out of it, you turn to me.

You've done four covers for Altrix Books so far. What's your design process like?

Well first, I'd like to say thank you for allowing me to work on those covers, as I find the whole process a very rewarding one. I am a designer by choice (which is not exactly the same for all illustrators) and it satisfies a certain need in my brain.

As far as the process, the initial thing I like to establish is the general mood and tone we want to convey. With pieces that need to communicate something, I like to have input from the author to understand what they are thinking and are going for so that what I create is not going to cause a disconnect from the actual work itself. However, I understand that it can be difficult to try and narrow down your whole story into a single image, so I mostly ask for a wide net of key words, scenes, and locations that I can then draw from.

For The Chronomsith Chronicles, I wanted to establish a certain look and layout to the covers that would tie all the books in this brand-new series together. For Master Pieces, I was more concerned about trying to represent a variety of characters involved without drawing portraits of them - so, the opposite of CC. It varies by project, which is again when I turn to author/editor input.

There's one more thing you've brought to this book - the character of Tati. Tell us a little about her.

Ohhh Tati. Well, she was a character I created back in 2009, and can be seen in several of my college art projects (though looking a little different). However, artists have a curious habit of making characters but then not actually doing much with them, so she kind of just lingered for a while when her story didn't get off the ground. I don't exactly recall how it got brought up, but at some point in time you (Kara) and I were talking about something or another, Tati was mentioned, and eventually it came about that she would fulfil a perfect niche in The Chronosmith Chronicles. Her original story has her start in a far future on a colonized planet, and eventually in the narrative she becomes a dimension-hopping bounty hunter, which I am amused to see was something actually needed!

What's it like seeing her in this new setting? Any hopes for what she'll get up to?

I'm honestly just glad to see that Tati has a home. It is a little bit nerve-wracking to hand off your creation to someone else when you have such a strong idea of who she is, even if you (I) have never done much with her. However, I trust you guys to do her right. I'm hoping Tati makes life annoying for the various parties involved and maintains her great hair while doing so.

Where can people see more of your work?

If you just want the art, the best place to follow me would be on Instagram. If you're also interested in my fandoms and baseball opinions, my Twitter and Tumblr would be great places to check out. Finally, I do have a website which contains illustration & design work, plus my shop! I have various t-shirts, prints, pins, and other sundries available for purchase.

Buy your copy of Eleanor's Tears now on Amazon!