“What’s happening with the book, Matt?” no one asked.
Well, I’ll tell you, no one. It’s shittingly close to being ready now. So shittingly close, in fact, that I’m just waiting for the paperback proofs to arrive so I can give them what I hope will be one final review before I make them available to people’s bookshelves, kindles, iPads, phones, Nooks, crannies (that isn’t one), and whatever else people use to read stuff on these days.
I recently received the final cover art, which has been created by the very smart Amanda Plant and which I really like. The book is, I suppose, an epic fantasy – or at least a long heroic fantasy – but because I tend not to take myself ever so seriously, neither does the book, really. I’ve tried to keep the tone light even if, at 598 pages, the actual book won’t be. I wanted a cover that was in keeping with that tone – something that said ‘fantasy’ but didn’t necessarily have photos of men swinging swords all over the place. I usually tend to prefer book covers that have illustrations or interesting artwork over those with photographs.
I realise that, in heroic fantasy, the photo-covers tend to be the favoured option – and I’m certain that there’s a very good reason, backed up by loads of market testing, for that – but I kind of have to stick with what I like.
When Gemmell started writing the Troy series, I absolutely loved the cover for the first edition hardback of Lords of the Silver Bow (below). By the time books two and three were released – the latter posthumously – that style was dropped in favour of the more prevalent warrior photo covers. I have all three of those books on my shelf in front of me now, and while I like books two and three well enough, there’s no doubt that, for me, book one is the winning cover.
Erm, so I did have something of a point here, no one, which was to say, ‘look at t’ cover o’ me book.’
So, you know, look at the cover of my book.
The resolution on that image isn’t great, mostly because the software I was using to take a screengrab of the PDF is shit and it turns out that I’m actually a bit of a technical numpty these days. Speaking of which, I don’t know what sort of witchcraft, tricksiness, and technical chicanery allowed me to get these weird 3D virtual renderings of my book, but I kind of like them (again, shit resolution because numpty etc).
(If you don’t love the little monster on the spine, then I don’t even know what to say to you.)
I’ll probably be doing some sort of giveaway soon via Goodreads. So, watch this space I guess.