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Friday, 1 August 2014


I'm not particularly crafty, but I dig decoupage and mod podge is my best friend. I made an awesome chessboard once, with Elvis and Elizabeth Taylor as the black king and queen, and Martin Luther King and Queen Elizabeth as the white ones. Batman was a dark knight, of course, Elton John a white one. And so on.

My collages used to be painstakingly cut and pasted from magazines and stamp collections, but with improved skills in computer paste-ups came much more efficient art. Not less time-consuming, but now I don't need to take out my contacts to make the tiny corner cuts.

So, turning my collages into covers for composition notebooks was a logical step in my creative outlets. I love composition notebooks. College ruled are my favorite, though my obsession began with soft-cover graph paper books I used to buy with money I'd earned cleaning my dad's office.

I was half-way through writing Marking Time when I finally designed an inspiration collage to cover the notebook I was using to keep track of all the random ideas that stumble around in the dark, usually just as I'm falling asleep, or just before I crack my eyelids in the morning.

Tempting Fate's notebook cover was made while I was still plotting the book, and if I had to do it now there would be others added. Elizabeth Tudor's ring, for example, was the genesis of the Clocker artifact, but it was given to her well after she was Queen, so historically it didn't work. Not to mention the fact that Aislin would have been the one to hand down the artifact, not Elizabeth, and the minor little annoyance that I couldn't get the rights to reproduce the image of it on the cover.

The notebook cover for Changing Nature is going to give away clues about the time period, and might reveal some plot lines, so be warned. Visual spoilers ahead. It's also much leaner, and I find my eyes wandering to it for tone as much as visual inspiration.

I love the photo of the redhead in armor, and the woman in the upper left corner is an actual broadsword champion. How cool is that? And if it wasn't obvious, Henry Cavill would be an astonishing Archer in my imaginary movie.

So, there you have some of the visual inspiration that goes into creating the Immortal Descendants. And now I just have to paint those pictures with words...