Australia/New Zealand Cover Excitement
I was sitting in the sun reading Tamora Pierce’s Beka Cooper: Bloodhound—despite the sunshine there was an iron hard frost outside so inside was definitely the place to be—when my cellphone rang. I made pickup—just—but there was a glitch, so no voice connection although I could see the caller’s number. And not only was it not a number I recognised, but I was pretty sure that it wasn’t even a NZ number. Fortunately, by the time the call came though again a minute later I had been able to join the dots—mainly because my agent, Robin, in the States, had told me that she had passed on my cellphone number to Bella, my English editor, who might be calling about covers. So when I picked up the second time and there was that time-distance pause, I was able to say: “Hello. Is that Bella?”
And indeed, it was—calling me from the UK at 12.45 am in her early Sunday morning (the UK is eleven hours behind NZ at present). True editorial dedication, but as she explained to me, there is only a 30 day window for Orbit (my UK/ANZ publisher) to bring The Heir of Night out in Australia and New Zealand after it has been released in the USA. (My publisher there is Eos.) So the race is on to get the Australia/New Zealand edition ready to go, including the cover—and it was the cover that Bella was calling about. She says the Orbit team are keen to get a design that reflects the adventurous feel of the book; also one based around Malian (the central character in Heir) so they need information on clothes, armour and ‘all that jazz’ pretty much yesterday.
So guess what I spent the rest of yesterday afternoon doing? No, no, I’m joking really, because of course I keep files on what characters look like, what they wear, and armour, so it was really just a matter of pulling that together and finding a few images that might illustrate the notes a little better … Fun stuff, especially when you know that it is all part of developing the cover look and getting the story out there into the world.
Also (call me old fashioned here) but it was just really nice to speak with Bella and “hear” the person: email is a great medium, but the telephone call—despite the occasional time-distance delay—definitely added another dimension. But I can well understand Bella not wanting to make too many at 12.45 am in the morning. So next time, maybe, I will have to take that hit for the team!
Meanwhile, I’m really looking forward to seeing the Australia/New Zealand cover.