It is strangely anticlimactic to open the brown envelope and draw out the two sample cover art designs for my upcoming novel. The publisher has been as good as their word, and presented two different ideas. One aspect of the artwork I expected, but it’s also a lot different than anything I had imagined. Certainly, the artist has tried to include the key concepts of the novel in the cover – particularly the Islamic theme. However, I still feel strange that this is partly my decision. I have no idea what to say. I like both, and prefer one over the other, but I am no expert. I may be an expert reader – goodness knows I read enough to be considered an expert – but I’m not an expert on cover art. Such decisions are worrying. But I trust that the publishers know what they are doing.
In the meantime, I am also trying to decide about launch events. I want to have several – one at Aberystwyth – where I did the PhD which resulted in the novel- and one at Swansea University, where I work. I also want to do one here, in Aberdare, in the local library, where my mother once worked and which holds a special place in my heart. I would very much like to have a local launch, one where I can establish myself as a writer within my own community. And I would also like a launch event in Cardiff, to maximise exposure and ensure all my friends in Cardiff can come. Am I being too ambitious? I feel as if I am starting out in a new job with no idea how to do it. Writing is one thing – selling myself and my work is another. I wonder, do all authors go through this kind of crisis?