These past couple of months I have found myself in unchartered territory. Honestly, I never expected to get a book deal and, perhaps naively, didn’t research what comes next.
I’ve talked about marketing and developing a platform already. I’m still navigating the learning curve there. I’ve done some more edits and I now understand how that all works.
My latest challenge was the book cover. How important is cover art? I’ve been a voracious reader of crime fiction for many years and it got me thinking – how much does the cover of a book really matter? Does anyone buy a book based on the cover?
My publisher house, Rainstorm Press, have been very supportive. They asked me for my ideas, wanted it to be something I was comfortable with and proud of. Hmmm. An Unfamiliar Murder is a crime thriller. I trawled my bookcases for ideas. But they are all so different, the only overriding theme was that they were all photographic covers and this seemed like a good idea, in keeping with the whole ‘keep it real’ theme.
Rainstorm put me in touch with their photographer. After much pondering, I chose a scene from the book, gave my ideas on colour schemes and sent the artist excerpts so that they could try to emulate the scene. I waited with bated breath.
Luckily, the photographer found an incredibly similar location and a very good likeness for one of my leading characters. We had to wait a few weeks before the leaves dropped off the trees for authenticity (the novel is sent in November in England), but the photos were taken.
The photographer sent me some stills and asked me to pick four photos that I liked best. Then she worked her magic and turned those stills into mock ups with different layouts of header and by-line. And I was able to choose my favourite.
It has been a great experience to be so involved with the cover art of my book and I’m delighted with the results. I can’t wait to share it with you all.
Jane Isaac’s first novel, An Unfamiliar Murder, will be released by Rainstorm Press in February 2012. Jane is still very much a Newbie, she doesn’t even have a website yet (one day…) and with a day job, a family and a very demanding black Labrador, she squeezes her writing into every spare moment she gets. Join her on the rocky road from pen to publication!