Madeleine Marsh


On finding a cover artist, and fan fiction

Last Saturday there was an exciting development, I found my cover artist!  

I've been researching designers and looking into licensing a stock image for publication but on Saturday morning while mooching around the internet I came across a drawing that I fell instantly in love with.  I found the artist's home on the deviantART website and dropped a mail to her asking if she was interested in creating the artwork for my book.  Within the hour we were mailing back and forth ideas for settings, styles and sizes, and that was all before I'd asked her for a price.  Commissioning a digital artist was something I hadn't even thought about until I saw the artwork that morning.  As soon as I saw her work, I knew she would do my work proud because the inspiration for her art came from the same source as the inspiration for The House at the End of the World.

For as long as I can remember I've written stories.  I still have the A5 bound 'books' I wrote at primary school when I was eight years old.  I can't ever show them to anyone (they are that bad!) but they're testament to the fact that as soon as I stopped wanting to be Quincy ME I started wanting to be a writer and I've never stopped.

I've been letting my stories loose on the internet ever since I was granted membership to a closed Usenet group for Babylon 5 fans.  Uhho - is this another case of fan fiction author branching out? you might be asking yourself.  The answer is yes.   Us fanfic authors often get a bad rep, but the truth is that we release our work into often hostile environments to readers who have the capability to make their opinions instantly and publically known.  Good fan fiction writers obsess over characterisation and setting, ensuring every word of dialogue is correct in voice and tone, doing justice to the original writers, to the actors and to the fans.  Some of the best stories I've ever read have been fan fiction.  It's an excellent way to hone skills, to get feedback, to improve and to grow as a writer.  It's also the perfect way to clear the mind of those ideas that won't let me sleep at night!  Behind many modern authors, I would hazard a guess, are fandoms in which they taught themselves their art.

Each step to self-publishing is both exhilarating and terrifying.  But finding an artist whose inspiration matches my own and whose work compliments mine is an incredible, fantastic thing.  I'm so excited about working with her, to help her turn the image in my head into reality, into the book cover and website graphic.  And once it's complete I'm going to have a T-shirt made, because I think the next step will be advertising and what better place to start than on me?

Last updated: 2013-08-25 13:05:15

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