The Icon Prize

I'm truly honored to have had The Unfastened Heart chosen as the inaugural selection of The Icon Prize. Thank you to Catherine McFarlane, Helen Hanne, and the Icon committee for choosing the novel to launch this award. And thank you to the artists the world over who have responded with such abiding gifts and enthusiasm to Icon's call for art. Whether from the U.S., continental Europe, Canada, Australia, South America, New Zealand, Africa, the UK, Sri Lanka, India, the Middle East or Africa -- you have humbled me by the sharing of your generous talents. May 2011 shine a bright light on your wonderful works!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Simple Beacon

Artist James Thouborron shares this luminous piece, entitled The Lamp Post, rendering a suburbia transformed by a simple beacon, a candle held up to the rather ecstatic natural world.

Outside, the oaks tossed their leaves behind their woody shoulders, the same way that women move their hair from front to back.  The old gas lamps cast aureoles of light onto the pavement, but directly in front of the de la Senda house, where the illumination stopped, the street turned into a broad thoroughfare of blackness and ideas where anything might happen.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Intricacies of Love

We are delighted to receive this striking illustration from Jessica Rae Gordon of Toronto, Canada.  Anna's heart is here both interior and exterior, secret and revelation, sequestered and generous.  I can't help but be drawn to these contrasts.  

Ms. Gordon writes,

In my illustration I wanted to show the intricacies of love by showing the mechanics of a woman's heart and circulatory system.  Also, because the book has many descriptions of flowers, I put in the patterned wildflower drawings in the background.  With my line work, I wanted the drawings of the weeds to mirror the veins in the body.

Thank you for sending us this remarkable work, Ms. Gordon!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Waiting to Be Found

Thanks to Erika Haight for honoring me with her beautiful photograph and cover design, titled Sweet Thoughts of You.  The work evokes such a sense of hope, longing, expected renewal, all of which reside in Mariela's spirit.  Erika's words:

Dear Ms. von Herzen,

You have the most remarkable ability to express in words what it means to love and be loved by another.  I was especially taken by the tightly woven relationships that were formed between the women characters in your story. . . Since finishing your book I have purchased three additional copies and mailed them to people whom I have shared similar experiences with.  The image I have submitted for The Unfastened Heart is that of a young woman in quiet contemplation holding a flower. . .it could be any one of us who has ever loved, lost, or is still waiting to be found.

Art Inspires Art -- You are truly an inspiration!

Warm regards,
Erika N. Haight