Your art is the best art of all the art.

Posted on 28 March 2011

This morning I received a wonderful surprise in the form of an email from Julie Bates, one of the people working on the cover design for Living Arrangements. Until I opened that email, I wasn’t even sure the design process had begun. But now I know that Julie has already read the book and the process is in the works.

I think all writers should start their Monday mornings with words as kind as these:

“…I just wanted to let you know that after reading your stories, I’m excited for the opportunity to create a physical home for your words, so to speak … it was amazing for me to see how insightfully you described the feelings and experiences of young girls.”

She also said she was sure this book would be the first I publish of many and that she’s glad she has “the chance to design a cover for you before you become rich and famous and have your covers designed by Chip Kidd.”

Flattery will get you everywhere, Julie.

But seriously, how awesome is she to send me such a nice email? She also singled out my story “The Clarinet” in particular, which made me happy. I’ve always had a soft spot for that story, even when I started to wonder if I’m the only one who feels that way. Hearing that a stranger connected with “The Clarinet” was a happy moment.

Thanks, Julie. And can you guys believe that cover art ideas are going to start floating around? I love it. My life has been so hectic for other reasons lately — other writing projects, work, traveling, and friends and family stuff — that I’ve actually put Living Arrangements on the back burner a bit, at least while I’m waiting for edits and the next steps. This is a nice reminder that, hey, a book is trying to be born here.

I’ll try to post any future cover-related updates as soon as I’m able. As long as the cover doesn’t feature a pitiful-looking horse or a girl with boxy man shoulders, I think I’m set.

Photo: Jo Naylor


4 responses to Your art is the best art of all the art.

  • margosita says:

    I thought this post was going to be about how not to support writers/artists. Subtitle: “Don’t be a Roy.”

    But I liked what it was really about. How exciting!

  • Teri says:

    What a lovely way for your cover art person to word that note. Maybe you should print out that e-mail and frame it? I must say, it gives me peace of mind to hear good stories like this about the process of publishing —- everything seems to be so heartless and gloom-and-doom, but your post today reminds of me of the small kindnesses that are sure to be out there amidst the other stuff.

    And congratulations.

  • Averil Dean says:

    What a lovely email. I’m more eager than ever to get my hands on your book.

  • lisahgolden says:

    That really is a great way to start your day. I’m still so ignorant of the whole process that learning about each step is like WOW! So that’s what happens? Intellectually, I know it’s a long process, but if I ever reach the point of having a process, I’ll probably drive you all crazy with my impatience.

    Congratulations on this next step. It sounds like it’s going to be great!

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