Wednesday, September 15, 2021
Welcome to my sanctuary. Don’t be mislead by that dark foreboding image. There’s nothing scary here today. This post is about writing — sort of… Over my 9+ years of blogging, a few people have admitted that they “Only look at the pictures.” I try not to let that bother me, because I put a lot of work into choosing, arranging, and often creating the images I use.
Last week, a longtime friend (who particularly likes the covers I make for Dead of Winter) asked if I could teach him the way I make images.
“It’s complicated…” I said, not meaning to flatly refuse him. “I use three different kinds of software, go back and forth, and… If I were smart enough, I could probably do it all in PhotoShop, but this works for me.”
Then yesterday (as I write this post) I started a cover concept for the tenth installment of Dead of Winter. I decided to show him the parts, with a little bit of explanation. (No, this won’t be a how-to.)
Looking at the breakdown image I put together, I suddenly realized that the way I make images is tied to the same part of my brain that makes stories from “random reader things” — my three things method of storytelling. When a reader gives me a “thing,” and its image pops into my head, the story begins. (If I can’t conjure up an image, the thing stays in my story matrix until I can see it.) Likewise, I look at a number of images, and zero in on the parts of each one that I imagine in my book cover.
I guess, in this case, my “things” were Emlyn, staff, eye, and a background that fits my usual look. To give multiple covers a similar yet different look, I stick with a certain style for the backgrounds. This one may or may not be the final cover, but that’s not the point of this post. Here’s a very rough draft of this concept. If I keep it, there are still hours of work to do, adjusting colors, contrast, lighting, and shadows, getting the book cover size right, and finally cleaning up edges.
Speaking of designing, yesterday I had a fun visit with the marvelous designer Valentina Cirasola for her Autumn with an Author series. I think she is the only person who thirsts for color as much as I do. Here are some of her books.
We discussed my writing process. I tried to give answers that were as good as Valentina’s insightful questions. I hope you’ll click over and join us.
The September issue, Dead of Winter: Journey 9, Doors of Attunement is live. Emlyn and her traveling companions, and the others they meet would love for you to come along. Either way, friendly comments are welcome.
Wishing you an easy coast down the other side of this midweek hump. Hugs on the wing!
Dead of Winter: Journey 9, Doors of Attunement
Dead of Winter — All the Journeys
Universal Purchase Links
Journey 9, Doors of Attunement
Journey 8, The Lost Library
Journey 7, Revenant Pass
Journey 6, The Fluting Fell
Journey 5, Llyn Pistyll Falls
Journey 4, The Old Road
Journey 3, the Fever Field
Journey 2, Penllyn
Journey 1, Forlorn Peak
This is a work of fiction. Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental.
Copyright © 2021 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene
All rights reserved.
No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.
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