Sunday, January 16, 2011
Authors and Artists
In my loooong writing career, I've had the pleasure of working with many professionals in the book business: editors, copy editors, illustrators, bookstore managers, librarians etc. Because most publishers want to control the art/covers of books, authors don't usually work directly with artists. Fortunately, I've often had input in my book covers, even if it's simply the editor asking my opinion. Because of this, and because a friend of mine is also an artist, I have developed huge respect for artists. Their job is often tougher and less celebrated than the writer's.
Fortunately, Ruth Sanderson, the artist illustrating the "Horse Diaries" series, has received much-deserved kudos from reviewers. I absolutely love her art, and the cover of my book Risky Chance the seventh book in the series is gorgeous.
Ruth has illustrated all the books in the series, including Bell's Star, book two, (written by me as well although there are many different authors), and I am convinced her art is a major reason the series is selling like hotcakes. She has a blog www.horsediaries.blogspot.com where she explains in detail how she creates the covers and inside art. It is quite a job involving models, period clothing, horses and photos before the initial drawings are begun. It's a fun and informative blog for anyone interested in art/horses/writing.
I was honored to meet Ruth, discuss the books with her, and send resources back and forth, especially for Risky Chance, which is set in the 1930s when Seabiscuit and thoroughbred racing reigned supreme. I had to do a lot of research, which I passed on to her, so I feel as if I have had some input into the book's art, but I know well that Ruth has done all the hard work. I'll have to wait until fall 2011 to see the interior illustrations, and I can't wait!