It was going to be Dante but I’m running late this morning! And also I felt that perhaps I shouldn’t subject my readership to yet another long screed. Plus, this way I can do “I for Inferno.”
One of the things that has surprised me about my decision to publish my work myself has been the fact that it has brought me back to drawing and the visual arts. I took art classes (watercolours) at a community course when I was in high school, and stained glass later on, and I have intermittently drawn or painted between other things. Over the last few years, though, I hadn’t been doing much at all.
Then I decided I was serious about indie publishing, and came up against the need for covers.
I happen to prefer illustrated covers to ones made with photographs. I also like graphically strong covers — solid colours, cool typography, that sort of thing. I am not naturally strong at bold and simple — not in speech, not in writing, not in drawing lines. However, I want to be!
So I have been practising drawing. Admittedly my lamp for “Scheherezade” looks rather like a teapot (my earlier effort, based on a much more period-appropriate artifact, I found less successful as a cover), but, you know, I like it. I’ll get better. And the beauty of self-publishing is that I can change the covers when I want — if these don’t seem to be working, or I discover an amazing artist (whose work I can afford), or I just get a better idea — then I can go for it.
In the mean time, I am playing around with drawing and with graphics programmes, and also thinking about using the covers for note cards. (Without the titles.) And, you know, having fun with another art form, which makes me think and look in different ways. It’s fun.