This book details in an autobiographical format, the difficulties and challenges I faced when I got out and how to avoid the same mistakes or capitalize on the things I did right. Suicide, Divorce, and unemployment rates are all higher for the veteran population than they are for the civilian population, this book and the accompanying webpage (http://www.conusbattledrills.com) is an effort to help educate veterans to curb these problems.
For the cover, I am looking to capture a lot of emotion: anger, loneliness, depression, but yet perseverance because there is hope for the future. I imagine a man walking alone in a foggy road in a suit carrying a folded american flag. Behind the man is a wolf looking at the reader. There is very little color in the image, maybe the eyes of the wolf, the man's tie, and the flag. The title and subtitle are in a deep red color:
CONUS Battle Drills
A Guide for Combat Veterans to Corporate Life, Parenthood, and Caging the Beast Inside
I am publishing with createspace and have attached the measurements in the PDF below. Please leave room for a barcode on the back
UPDATE: The man in the image has been through a lot. He has been cold, wet, tired, hungry, and afraid. He has buried friends and lived through the hardship of war. He has decided to move off the battlefield and enter the civilian world. This is a transition he doesn't know anything about (hence the fog). He is a worn out soldier in a suit, but he is pressing on because his family needs him and he's hopeful about the future.
The wolf is the beast inside. My unit was once surrounded and outnumbered by the enemy. They started to close in on my position. I unleashed the beast and attacked furiously sending accurate gunfire on their positions so we could move to higher ground and defend ourselves. That capacity for violence is what saved my life overseas, that is what the wolf represents. In this new life, that wolf needs to be controlled, so he needs to be behind the man, not in a cloud or in the sky. It's important that the wolf looks like something that can be controlled since thats the part of the book about "caging the beast inside"
I don't want to see the man's face. I want the soldier who is reading this book to be able to see himself in the image. This will resonate with guys coming back from combat.
I've had four friends kill themselves because they lost control of their lives and the demons in their mind. This book is part of a larger effort to keep that from happening in the future.
It's raw, visceral, and honest.