Writer Silliness

Monday, June 7, 2010

Do You Do Weird Things While You Write?

I do, especially when "burn out" starts to set in like it did a couple of days ago. And this time, the "weird" consisted of making mock-up covers/ banners for my WIP when I got blocked. I hit Google images and found some clip art and wasted a couple of (surprisingly fun) hours.

There's this one, which probably makes you thing the book is vampire related, even though it's not. It's not even a particularly "dark" book. Heavy in places, but not dark.


This one gets the tone of the character, but not really the story.

This one, my current favorite WIP and the one that's shocked me with how easy it is to write it kind of obvious for what it is. (And I promise, the "wolf" part doesn't involves\ weres. It's a gothic village setting where the wolves are the doggish variety and dangerous to livestock.)It's plain and not really what I had in mind, but was the closest I could get without dragging out the prisma colors and sketch pad:


Making these made me appreciate the complexity of what a cover designer must go through when building a cover for a new book. It's a matter of tone and character and a dozen other things that I didn't take the time to hash out while I was playing. (If you've never seen the YT video of the cover designer making a cover for "Soulless", I'd suggest looking it up. It's fascinating how many layers and steps he went through.

The exercise, worked, btw. It knocked loose the writer's block, and for a finale/celebration of sorts, I made a real effort to make something that resembled an actual bookcover for the WIP that I hope will be query ready by the end of this month -- Arclight.


9 Chiming In:

AuroraLee said...

beautiful artwork! But then, your banners are always great. Nice job :)

Terry Towery said...

I like the artwork. I'm also a bit blocked right now, and doing what I always do -- I'm screwing off and playing video games. Oh, and mowing the yard. :)

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on winning Nathan Bransford's contest! : D

dolorah said...

Josin I've been out of touch lately. Head stuck up my own - writing things.

I read your entry to Nathan's contest on Friday, and lost my internet connection before I had a chance to re-read the entries to get a better sense of who to vote for. I was pretty divided between you and Bane, so I'm really glad I didn't get the opportunity to have to choose. I don't think I could have. I'm glad both won.

Congratulations!! You deserve it.

I like the covers you've been playing around with. A neat way to beat writers block. Or just have a well deserved break.


MBW aka Olleymae said...

I love the pictures! I totally agree--sometimes to get through writers' block you just need to let your mind play (normally w/something else creative) and then POW you're ready to write/revise/brainstorm again. :)

Josin L. McQuein said...

Thanks guys. :-)

Nice to know silly =/= certifiable. :-+

Just for some background: the first one looks like that because the MC has red eyes. Nothing sinister, just genetics in action. She actually wears brown contacts so they're not seen often.

The 2nd is a revenge story where the MC begins to question her motives once the person she hates turns out to be a little less 1-dimensional and evil than she expected.

The 3rd is pretty obvious, I think.

The 4th is hopefully going to be query ready in the next couple of weeks. WOO-HOO! And I'm kind of in love with my fake cover because it came out so pretty... of course the girl on it shouldn't be wearing a dress, but that's a minor detail.

Nicole said...

I do a similar things and pin stuff to a giant corkboard I have - actually just put it on my blog *grin* I'd love to mock up a cover but I'm faaarr too fussy.. have to go find an artist friend :)

Melissa said...

So I was checking out Nathan's blog and went to check all the nominees for the 250 page critique. Yours is the first there and I had to stop reading and hop over to your blog to exclaim WOW! I am so intrigued. Those are a good 250 words in my humble opinion.

And, wow you did those banners? I really like them.

I guess this means I have to follow you know, since your so talented and all.... :-)

Simon Hay said...

Hi Josin. I've enjoyed your comments on the blogs we both visit. Talk soon, Simon.

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