Thursday, December 30, 2010

The New Amber

It’s a funny thing. As I was writing my latest book, I had an image of one of the characters in my head, but when I designed the cover, I didn’t quite match the image I had in my head. It was close, but it wasn’t quite the same. The nose was different. The eyes were different. The hair was different. But now, with the cover in front of me, the woman on the cover is the person I think of when I think of Amber.

I suppose that’s one of the nice things about being able to design your own cover. If someone else designed the cover, they would’ve grabbed some stock picture and that would’ve been it. I wouldn’t have been happy with the cover and there wouldn’t be a thing I could do about it. But since I designed the cover and I designed the woman on the cover, the cover is as much a form of communication between me and the reader as anything else.

But I will say that I considered using a stock photo. I found some I liked. Some showed a mother and daughter in which they were both smiling. The girl was about right age and the woman looked similar to Amber, but I wanted Amber to have a more serious look on her face. I found one that I liked in that the woman looked serious, but the girl in the picture was too young. On top of that, the stock photo would’ve cost me $150. It could be that I’ll look back later and think how silly it was for me to be concerned about that, but past experience has shown that it is good to keep expenses down if you hope to make a profit.