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Thursday, July 26, 2012

My Dream of How a Book Should Look

This mockup was created by the artist, Matt Curtis, using one of the pages from a draft layout and superimposing the background image, the fairy he drew. I originally came up with the idea for this book design by looking at what Brighter Books ( had done with some of their books. They did lots of illustrations but the other neat thing they did was create a line drawing that went with the theme of the book. The unusual thing about the drawing was that they let the design go under the text on the chapter start pages and draw into the bleed area or the part of the book that might get trimmed. It gives the design a unique free form look where it is not curtailed by a fixed and visible margin. I knew I wanted to do something like that but I wanted to do it with a unique illustration designed for the book. I talked to my book designer about whether or not it was possible to do such a thing and he told me that it could be done and that it wouldn't cost that much. Since the book is scifi book that shows the origins of fairies and has as its metaphor, technology is magic, I knew I wanted to use a fairy illustration to balance out the scifi illustrations. Plus, in the early part of the serial where the book sounds more scifi-ish, I figured it would drive the readers bonkers wondering what was coming up in the book. It would cause them to anticipate the merging of fairy fantasy with science fiction. Anticipation is good. So the culmination of that idea was Matt Curtis producing a stunning "modern" fairy illustration for the background and then my book designer inserted the fairy image as a background on every chapter start page. This image is from a draft layout.  Take a look, see if you agree with my dream of how a book should look.

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