-Cover design for the non-artist- As with this article, most of it is research and imagining so you have an idea of A - what you’d like, B - art style you’d prefer, C - research of an artist who can do it and contact with him and now we get to D - presenting it if you get an email of “Interested + Rates” and that is acceptable.
Most “HowTo” books are a bit too juvenile - most pages used up in step by step instructions for one pose/character.  This is a little different, going into theory and theme though still quite accessable to a self- teaching beginner.  It’s also very inspiring to people who like the classic themes of sci-fi art for old books.
Right click - open in new tab to read the story!
Margaret Brundage - did paintings for Weird Tales - and they paid her before their writers and their own salaries, despite her being Mexican and likely “Undocumented” and decades later she’s still getting readers!
Brundage’s own teenage daughters posed with some props - this likely wasn’t a Klan uniform but lots of failed “Mystic Secret Societies” of the 10s and 20s so lots of “Order of...” robes in the thrift shop...
On comissioning artwork for stories Writer Advice:
I know "Don't Judge a book by it's cover"....  But, we do.  I'd have not discovered the wonder of Yes and Progressive rock without those Roger Dean covers getting me to buy that "Classic Yes" CD album long ago...  Unfair but true.
I'm getting better at art - will put some of my own up for my works gradually - and 3d stuff.  But I'll always be a storyteller first. However, this is for you other authors - advice from one who has employed the skills of better illustrators when needed.  Let's say you get that story written and are going to self-publish it.  Self  Publishing advice for if you go 'traditional' prepare for a 'stock photo' cover NOTHING like your book and you to be docked royalties for even THAT worthy of a new comission. But - how to comission one?  How to get someone to do it for you, who can draw or paint, physical or digital?  This is what this is about.
First - get a general idea what you want.  Sci-Fi adventure showing the Guy, the Girl and the Goon per classic pulp?  Abstract but powerful space scene?  Scene from the book that pulls the reader in but hopefully isn't a spoiler for the main part?  Comical, serious, realistic, expressive?  Get a basic idea what you want, even if not an “Artiste…” - per Picasso - “Good artists create, great artists STEAL.”  - now you’d get in trouble if you rip off 100% (or use without permission) someone else’s work - but look at lots of covers and if possible ones of the genre you are working in.  You’ll get lots of ideas what you might want you can then have your soon to be artist associate (and maybe friend) help you out with…
And get a pencil and paper - even if you can barely draw a stick figure and work out an idea And go hunting. Links - Deviantart Renderosity Check into artists and see if they need $ or will take comissions and hopefully posted their rates.  I won't talk money specifics in this article because as time moves on inflation will rise and we might get new dollars, oak leaves or use severed hands from enemy tribes, whatever... So - to initiate: Polite. Concise.  To the point. Now, what IS this worth? Something is worth what another will PAY for it. Is what they charge worth it? Is it worth it to pay for it thinking it promotes your work and will hopefully draw the eyes of readers who will look into your book and buy it? Within reason some negotiation is okay but mostly the artist will charge what it is worth it to them to do it for.  Asking too low is asking them to 'cheapen' themselves.  Perhaps they might get enthusiastic for your story and offer more or charge a more reduced rate in exchane for regular work.  That is between you and them.  But realize you should assume it is "Work" unless specified otherwise.
Email - (or site message) to Artist Subject - Comission inquiry Hello, I am ..... an indepentant author self-publishing my own story "Kaptain Zorbon and his  Raygun Brigade" a novel length science fiction more or less adventure genre.  For brevity (being concise) my main idea is to show him and some of his crew, the rocket in the background.  I am not an artist/illustrator which is why I am asking you. Attached are my stick figure level drawing and some clips from earlier fiction to approximate the look I am looking for. I am curious if you are interested and what you would ask of me.  If we can come to an arrangement I will ask a few perliminary sketches then if I accept will pay half on start and half on completion. Thank you for your time. If you are uninterested, no problem, but please tell me soon if you can.
Now - here are some Do's and Don'ts --- DO -- Research your artists for who can best draw your story as described - not just the characters, settings but the "Feel" you are trying to achieve.  Wide world, many artists, think about how you want your work to feel, what best you'd like.  Also while some of the greats are VERY expensive (deserved by their talent, work, established credentials) lots of artists similar to them inspired by them looking for a break.  Many of the latter are often literal students of the best one and take the low paying, oddball work because he's doing "Costumed Dark Crimefighter" and "Dorkly Comics" would not like it if he illustrated some non-major publisher book at the same time... Plan to pay $ soon for art.  You don't have to settle for THIS artist and whatever he feels fair to charge you but you should have an idea of what you are willing to pay and be willing to part with it.  It is a waste of everyone's time to be "Oh!  Great!  I'll talk to you in a year..." Pay half up front upon agreeing to the work, half on comission of the work - that is the standard if you don't know him and he doesn't know you - it both assures him you are serious on paying him and assures you you will get some for your money.  Be prepared to pay for what you ask for. Treat "Erotica" with polite paranoia but communicate.  Easy to add in a brief moment - "This story does get X rated and I would like a ...naughty scene done... Is it a problem?" "If it was a movie it'd be R-rated - there's a pretty heavy scene with a nude lady though no XXX descriptions"... - in the initial letter.  Make sure you checked, most artists these days have "I won't do Food Play" or whatever fetish/subject they can't or won't get into already.  Lots LOVE to do nasty stuff, though some under different aliases, etc. and wouldn't put a graphic scene on the front page of their site.  Careful polite questions versus halfway through the comission sending a bunch of XXX stick figure drawings and clips from extreme XXX videos! Work out an agreement.  Nothing crazy but make sure to print it and keep it archived.  Usual one is for X amount of money you have Y picture you can use for good for your works but ideally that fiction/character - artist retains rights to the original and can cite it for credit, example of work, print in books of own works for sale...  Generally it benefits both, if someone is drawn to your story liking the art they'll like to see more of the artist, and if there's a book of "Works by" said artist the "Picture I did for .... series" will probably get you some sales later. Ask for some preliminary sketches but offer to pay if there are too many or many revisions.  Sometimes sketches can even enhance a story, webpage, etc.  Confirm permission to use if needed.  Usually an artist will give a good sketch of the image he thinks is best, maybe "your" version or an other idea.  Pick which one you like the best, ask friends/family if you can, then commit. Give Credit to the artist.  At least in foreward, first pages - "Cover art and art for chapters 5, 6, 11, 22 & 25 were by --- artist name---, artist website - commissioned for use by (your name) for this work." - also good to provide links, note if artist's work used on your website (get permission) and provide direct link to his website/artpage. Try to stick with an artist.  Well, it's up to you.  Some legendary partnerships are like Lord Dunsany and Sidney Sime, or ----Don't---- Ask an artist to draw too far outside his 'comfort level'.  Sure an artist should be challenging himself constantly to improve, but that is "Practice" - doing work for you is "Work" - so say don't ask a traditional painter of realistic Neo Renissance to do Calarts style animated cartoons he'd have to buy a new computer and special software to get and learn how to use said software...  Or an artist that draws comforting G-rated cartoons to do hyperrealistic gore/erotica stuff...  A recipie for both of you to be dissapointed.... Demand 100% rights to an image.  There are exceptions, like "Foreskin Man" who's subject is ... controversial ... so he pays (so he claimed) an artist for a generic style and likely 3X rate and owns it as if the author drew it himself - but that is the exception, namely to protect the artist from harassment and blacklisting.  Really, if you MUST have something drawn by you, spend an extra year to learn to draw or find a fake option (like 3DCG) but paying someone else and taking credit?  It's legal if done properly but expensive. Place an order with expectations that when you book is released the initial sales will pay for it. Even if your last books sold enough to get a Porshce (don't) or pay off all the debts, back taxes, fix the house (do) depending on future sales....  Alert!  "Whoop!  Whoop!  Whoop!"  Serious, if I could make a machine that would attract "Murphy's Law" like some magical magnet out of a slapstick cartoon... Have no real idea what the story will be about...  If you are doing a "Clonan" and you know what "Gloltan of Gnork" will look like and what the nubile wench tied to a pillar about to be zapped by the Worlok of Troge both look like, fine...you can hack it out later.  That $ you spent, incentive to get the Thud and Blunder typed out.  But if you have one idea and the story is another, but the artist painted a cover worthy of Erol Otus from classic D&D no you are NOT going to ask him to change it.  Make a NEW story then, don't ask a re-do.  Brain pain. Not have the money ready.  Serious, ever worked retail and someone has you lead them around the store and then they want to know where to buy online when you have a middle McMismanager ready to jump on you for some ever increasing 'sales' expectation?  Don't ask unless you are serious and interested in paying, save maybe asking rates/specs if the artist hasn't posted his "Commission info" already. Ask ridiculous changes.  A sketch.  A mistake.  Issues with details.  Fine.  They happen.  I've had them.  I've even insisted on compensation when there was a problem due to a delay in me asking for more work on a project months later.  If something HAS to change, like the dagger the evil wizard is going to use to sacrifice a princess has to look like .... that's no problem - but reasonable description and the 'sketch' phase should do this. Think you are the artist.   Hand him your sketches, your pulls from comics, movies, pinterest to give an idea what you want.  He might have a sketch of how it will work, keeping all the critical elements, but look BETTER.  Your $. I reccomend you trust someone you recognize as better than you in that department. Use sketches without permission.  Serious.  Some artists are so good that to non artists even a sketch can seem gawd-like.  But they hate it going out, not paid for and diminishing art.  I've run into this, but prevented any problem by asking permission and paying a little.  I liked it, asked and offered $, was OK'd by artist.  I'd never have done so without permission.  This is where legit you could get sued, but plain best fix is to avoid the problem by not letting it happen. Do not, I repeat do NOT go "I got this artist to do this for $...." ESPECIALLY if he gave you a special or charges less for regular work.  Like do you stand around at work and say "I get paid ...  How much do you get paid?"  Something is worth what another will pay for it.  Do you want to be jealous if he charged someone less (and probably a relative, church member) or others to demand he charge them less and cheapen himself because he cut you a break?  And even if it was pricey for excellent work - well you see why I don't put price estimates on this page?  A decade from now prices will have gone up, hopefully just that 3% creep of inflation, and if I posted even a premium estimate some artist out there would go "Great....y'know, not everyone knows money 10 years ago is...."  Nope,  do NOT mention specific $ unless its an IRS audit or your lawyer/accountant (those are protected by privacy rules) If asked by someone interested just say "I found him reasonable to work with but note I paid good money for the illustrations he did.  Please contact him/see his page for specifics, no two jobs are the same.  I was quite satsified working with him." - that gets rid of the cheapskate/dabbler but might get you some thanks for sending more business (good business) his way. ---pricing--- Again, I won't talk direct dollar signs - since prices go up and (scary) there might be a currency change... But general guidelines-> Each hour the artist puts into it should be 1-1.5x a going wage, not minimum but reasonable.  Said artist is likely working 1+ McJobs so if you offer less than flipping a burger...?  Their art should be that thing that makes it so they don't need a 3rd McJob and have some time, some luxury. Prices increase with reputation of the artist, complexity of work and time/effort/precision needed.  That's why 1 page of "Comic Art" is worth a good day's wages, not a bad day's wages because it takes about a day and well you'd want a good product not a "Gawd I hate my life, this job, the world...!" one? Now, some artists might have a very loose style and get a lot of freedom, and charge less.  Others might paint every picture like its still the Renissance and obviously need more.  If it's "Worth it" (to you) you pay what it's worth (for them) to comission it. The only fair way to negotiate a lower price is to offer more work - as long as they get a bunch of money in the process, becoming a stable source of income.  If I “Win the Lottery” and once in a long while I do pay the “Tax on stupidity” one of the first things I’ll likely do is set up a few trust funds to hire a few illustrators I’ve known to make “Bande Dessines” of some of my storylines. Now - don't let this worry you.  While most writers are poor, most artists are poorer.  Look around, get an idea of prices, ask in emails those you are interested in (polite, concise, to the point) you'll probably get a VERY reasonable offer.  And if you spend time writing and that takes from time spent wasting money at bars, theaters, on the latest pricey game soon to be in the bargain bin, well you should be able to carve out money to pay an artist to show you care that much about your work...
---Types of art-What to ask for---- I can't go over EVERY type - but I'll post here with some examples - this is 'review purposes only' and 'fair use' on a privately hosted website. The old school rule is sci-fi and fantasy have realistic art - especially pulp where it's "The Guy, the Girl and the Goon" - they put it quaintly in the "Zap" book which I reccomend to amateurs wanting a start.  Sci-Fi/Fantasy is meant to be an escape if you can go into a secondary world - though it often has deeper symbolic meaning expressed through the plot, the background story, etc.  So a more realistic, at least comic book drawing realism makes it easier to convey what it is to a reader and aid them in transporting themselves into your world. By and large the illustrations have been up to the publisher.  My favorite was where Weird Tales had an unofficial 'competition' for cover artwork - the best story of that issue got the cover illustration.  Their best illustrator - Margaret Brundage - did spicy covers that sold the magazine.  They PAID her, even when the writers were threatening to sue and the editor was eating from canned tomatoes he heated on a small electric element on his desk...  (per earlier in this article, PAY the illustrator upon completion, always!)  Note Brundage was a Mexican single mother who's teenage daughters posed along with some simple props like a hooded suit.  (likely failed secret society found in thrift shop)  Weird Tales didn't care her race, just she did good paintings including naughty stuff - while most 'Slicks' (the now esteeemed survivors of the Penny Dreadful era) literally SPAT in her face and said her profession was maid, seamstress or whore.  Yet the "Pulps" were racist? So, anyways, lots of the "Damsel in Distress" many authors edited their stories or made stuff with a spicy scene in it to get the cover and a little more $ back when a penny a word was VERY good pay. You don't have to do "Spicy" and "Damsel in Distress" and "Guy, Girl, Goon" but recognize they are staples of adventure fiction, scifi/fantasy especially "Adventure" related genre - AND they SELL.  Same with Heavy Metal.  I prefer the more artistic covers, but the "Babe" covers sell more issues.  Recognize that.  Your stories, and your $ to comission art. Again I won't type some forever essay about all the types of stories you might do and what to ask for.  Even if I made an exhaustive essay in a giant book form, got tons of permission, sold it, it became a classic like "Understanding comics" by Scott McCloud...  Well that's an idea but I think I'd be doing injustice to it.  Here's advice: TL/DR - "What scene from your story best illustrates what happens and will interest readers without ruining the ending or best twist plot?" --Think about it.  Is it where Kronan the Worrior is saving the princess from the evil wizard before she's sacrificed to bring forth Gothalu?  Is it where Detective Kirk Gorchs finds the diamond with the heiress in tow but some sinister Chinamen are hiding in the shadows to attack?  Is it Rick Rayman standing with his crew on Torgal-7 about to launch their despereate mission but pausing to admire their work and their lives of devotion to the Space-Corps that got them there?  Is it where Hans Strommond has opened the forbidden book in the now abandoned house of a reputed sorceror and finds the room is expanding, and from the shadows eyes appear and tentacles crawl?  Perhaps it is the Princess Yrlothian standing on a balcony of a million year old palace with the dim sun in the sky, fleshy plant/animal hybrids singing along the ancient walls and it is before the man from the present awakes to fulfil some now unknown prophecy but it depicts the world of the far tomorrow he is emerging into? I just kind of joked at a lot of plots done a LOT in the old pulps.  Use your own stories - or if you do a cliche, what do you add to it, how do you express it, what messages resonate? THIS goes on to the next one - what is the FEEL of  your story? Is it pulse pounding adventure?  A constant chase?  Evil mad scientists and men from foreign lands out to destroy the West and all we have worked for?  A brave two-fisted hero - perhaps a boxer down on his luck, an ex-military poor private eye, or maybe a self-made man or a super-techo scientist ready to be the hero? Is it existential dread?  A house of ghosts?  Some eldritch horror? Won't list stuff all day but the "Feel" of your story goes into both the art you request and the subject of the painting. THEN - there's the "Art of the COVER" this is really, REALLY rich... You see doing a "Book Cover" is more difficult than you'd think. Oh, sure, any amateur can get an existing image that kinda fits and just put it in a frame on a cover.  Hey, if that works for you...  But a REAL book cover is meat so the whole thing bleeds over the edge and the text invades just enough to communicate...  Also  - it has to be interesting both as is and close up - the best are for front and back done with the main center is the bottom 2/3 of the right side.  Thanks to classical golden proportions it's possible for artists to work this out -
but they always challenge themselves to do this.  This is why most "Book cover" prices are 40% higher.  They both sell the thing, but they need to do "Extra" work in case you use the back and some will be cut out.  Absolutely let the artist show it on their website, print in a book of their works, etc.  Rude not to (ahem 3x cost for 100% ownership IF you must) and its long term advertisement for  you both. Ok, now the more advances, warped, abstract art styles. Make it clear I HATE current "Fine Art" with a passion.  Per Picasso "The Camera FREED the Artist...." yeah it "Freed" 90% of them from earning a LIVING - and while I love the abstract, impressionist, post-impressionist (Van Gogh) stuff it lead to today's P---Chr-st and Cow's heads in formeldyhede...  And current art spits on this type of art (comic, fantasy, sci-fi) even while it STEALS from it.  IMO modern "Fine Art" is just a property/tax scam and a vehicle to hide illegal sales - due to that they work hard to find SHIT artists (sometimes literally) who tend to be degenerate (lifestyle, drugs) so they die off before needing to be murdered so they can jack up the prices and make $ conning the tax-man legally... Okay - calming down - Having said that, some of my favorite art has been from the expressionst "New Wave" era - mind you the stuff by ones that KNEW what they were DOING.  If your story is more than just entertaining surface adventure, or perhaps a long epic too complex to be contained in one action scene....well then an abstract or more expressionist approach would work well.  An epic of many planets over many years.  The world at the far end of time, an entropic world of ancient marvels and present ennui.  A chase across the ages with a time machine to try to stop a paradox before the end of reality.  A deep psychological epic of man's dealing with a long term alien invasion... Certainly worth paying for a detailed acrylic painting that's kooky and abstract. Just make it clear (my advice) NO you will NOT pay for two or three triangles of paper with paint spattered on it and/or maybe a stencilled 'rocket'...  Chris Riccardi level or better or you can DIY with some programs VERY easily even without pricier software/Wacom, etc. Perhaps your story is best symbolized very simply...?  A coffin with a cross on it, a hand reaching out?  A locket on velveteen with blood? (corn syrup, ketchup, look up stage blood)  A photograph of an ancient castle or cowboy hat on the ancient fence in your backyard?  Make sure you have permission to use photos or did them yourself - keep the metadata in the last case - copyWRONG trolls are everywhere... Iconic art you can do yourself.  Though I'd still reccomend an artist's help and yes pay them a little.  For quickie or little $ look into "Divine Proportions in Art" and do the "Let me go six paces back and blink..." test. I personally don't like that approach, since the "Big Publishers" do it for CHEAP-ness.  And, sadly, this steals from the low $ and "Independant" acts that should have this - as "I can't afford a big name artist but want to convey this story..." now faces paid professional artists doing even simplicity with utter perfection.  Kind of like the "Calarts" approach to animation the big studios ruin childhood memories with for quick cash grabs...  Sad but true, you want your new work to look like "Classics" they print out cheap at the chain bookstore and slap on cheap covers?  Cntrl+C, Cntrl+V from Project Gutenburg, don't even spend $ to give some new artist a day's wages and exposure for a new cover that is good working practice... But I wish you well if you think it best approaches your story!
Middle and Left = best hack even with stick figures on your best cover idea.  See how the picture you want and the text will fit.  Prepare for the artist suggesting HUGE changes MUCH better than you’d do without ditching writing and spending several years just practicing.  This is good if this happens. Right = quick synopsis of picture and what you want. ALso - 1 page synopsis of story, major characters, themes.  Fun to write these as it helps you solidify by stepping back what you are trying to express with your writing.  Even if it’s a crude “Clonan meets MoTU” done to express pent up adolescent rage, GOOD, just make the best story expressing this you can! However - The artist should NOT be expected to read your entire story.  Unless you are going to pay him the money to read the whole epic, allow some time to recover, then do lots of illustrations for it and the next TEN volumes you planned - say you won the lottery or negotiated a generous retirement + sundry via pictures of the VP with the office Corgi…  If you do have lots of money and want a coherent epic with the same work, by all means employ an artist (let him do other stuff though) but this is quite unlikely most RL situations.  Most artists just want an idea image, some examples, a brief description.  They then go to work turning your words and stick figure into “Take my money NOW!” from you and hopefully your readers to your book.  IF the artist asks for a copy of the text coz he wants to read it, GREAT (make sure you keep notes to prove you wrote it first, CYA policy) but most dread someone wanting to read their entire work - “But But - IF you’d read on page 66 He has his hand lopped off and then a flesh wizard puts an Orc hand for his right hand…  His right hand should be BIG and GREEN!!!” - do NOT do that to the Artist (and yourself) - if a detail like that is critical, it is in the synopsis - “He has a big, green right hand, Orc’s hand - happened 3rd chapter…” and let the artist ask for more if he wants. To summarize:
1 - Have your story done/nearly done so no major plot issues cause a frustrating (and costly or mooching) change and you aren't wasting $ on a story you'll never finish. 2 - Do research for current costs, for similar (in style at least) examples. 3 - Even if only a 'stick figure' do try to draw out what you'll request then examples per #2 (commander Gandar looks kinda like this comic book character but has brown hair) 4 - Initial contact to artist = polite, concise, to the point - select artist you think most likely to be able to make what you request and do research in case has guidelines for price/options already. 5 - If artist is OK with initial comm, send more info.  Do NOT expect him to read your entire epic (but give a copy if he asks! - again take steps, record emails, prove you did story idea first for C.Y.A. policy you don’t know him yet) - prepare a page of descriptions, stick figure breakdown, examples from existing art. 6 - Work with the artist - if he has a better idea for how the cover and/or other illustrations will look, advise going with his advice.  Just as you put words in the best place to tell a story he uses images/color/lines to tell a story and express himself and his art skills > yours or why pay for it. 7 - Communicate an agreement - at least you can keep using his work done for you to promote your fictions, the stories he comissioned for - and artist can cite "Work I did for ..." on website, in book of works for sale later. 8 - Have $ ready - pay 1/2 on acceptance (post initial sketches) of job - be prepared to pay 2nd 1/2 on completion. 9 - Make sure to give credit - such as on website, inside cover "Cover and illustrations on pages ..... done by .... website...." 10 - If you had a good experience, take time to be a “Reference” - like to an email - “Oh, YEAH!  Mr ---- Illustrated ---- for me ---- and ----.  I found his rates very reasonable (do not give $ exact) and turnaround great.  Fun to work with, he had some cool ideas for my characters!”  A few minutes of typing now and again over years could help your artist get other work and that helps his relation to you also. MMXX Maxx Feral
Here is my example of the standard cover using “Golden Mean” aka “Phi” -  you’ll find this a lot - and when it doesn’t match it it is balanced (color, characters, landscape, action) to largely match it.  This can be stretched or squashed and works from the microscopic atomic patterns to Galactic scales.  Long and short - if you can barely do stick figures, if you put this in what you send your artist (along with book covers you like) it’s saved both of you a LOT of hassle back and forth and a competent artist has a good starting point.
Recent years both comic book art and Manga have been making inroads into western pop culture.  For decades, since the 50s illustration was seen as something for Kids mostly save brilliantly realistic paintings for serious adult subjects.  This was due to the Comics Code and monopolistic publishers working with distributors to push out competition.  Sadly until very recent I'd advise against a cartoon/anime style illustration and even now would treat it with caution.  Unless, say you view your works as you read it as if it was done by the same team as Samurai Jack, "The Modifyers", Sym-Bionic Titan and the H--- with anyone who'll not touch it - that if you somehow get it popular enough to make a movie you'll whip out the old DVDs (or memory sticks, etc.) and go "This style!  This style!  Is .... still alive?  Can they do something like this scene .... for when my character does ....!?"  I enjoy such things myself and would likely purchase them. (if a good story I liked of course, I’m loyal to “The Story”)  It does perhaps still limit the audience though not as much as even 10 years ago.  Consider it a 5% handicap within the sci-fi/fantasy genre but might expand into people who don't actively read it but did watch cartoons when younger. To Cartoon or Not to Cartoon!? Iconic/Expressive covers + art I did these covers very quickly with my vector sofftware as a joke on the very cheap/sourced image stuff you can find - If I “Fair Use” anyone else’s images I want it to be praise.  Furthermore, “Artists should not insult each other’s works”…  This is intended as parody;  That I could do these in minutes means you shouldn’t pay for them… Art above by the late Chris Reccardi - frankly if he was alive I’d sell/trade my KORG M3 to get some illustrations for “Brothers of the Sun” from him - RIP - I hope they get “The Modifyers” made into a TV series someday… <-Homepage <-Articles Ebay affiliate link for this book
- By CROMMMM!!! -    YES, that IS Conan the Barbarian - the original one - story is public domain - “The Devil In Iron” - right click, open in new tab.