There are many steps from acceptance to publication of any book. One of the most interesting is development of a book cover.
Now, if you have an agent who sells your book to a big publishing company, you won't get to say much about the cover art. At least, that's what I've heard.
With MuseItUp Publishing, authors work with their cover artists to get the right look for the book. The first thing is for the author to fill out a Cover Art Worksheet. The author describes the main characters, makes suggestions for what might appear on the cover, and might send along some inspiration pictures. The cover artist's job is to make sense of the author's flights of fancy. Gently tell them they can't use the photos they want to use for a variety of reasons. The biggest reasons have to do with picture quality (the resolution must be super high), copyright issues (no we can't just grab anything we want from the internet), and if the picture meets the other criteria, it just plain costs too much to buy the rights.
There are several sites that carry royalty-free images. That doesn't mean the image is free, but only that it can be purchased once and then used on the cover without continually paying a royalty fee for every copy sold.
All that aside, it becomes a meeting of minds. Suzannah Safi is the cover artist for "Missing, Assumed Dead." I think we ended up with a really neat cover. Since the book is more a mystery than a romance, it shouldn't have a romance-type cover. Those usually involve to extremely good-looking people cuddling together with some additional story highlight images in the background. Suzannah didn't read my book before doing the cover. Artists don't have time to read them all, so they depend on the CA worksheet I mentioned earlier. She knew that the book had a couple who develop a romantic relationship, so she went with that thought and came up with this (these are just initial rough cuts).
Bloody good, I think.