Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Rip, Torn...a Book is Born!

I mentioned this collage in my last post when I reminisced about Moonlight and Magnolias last year. With my head in a cloud full of craft and author chatter, I stumbled into the meeting room alone. By the schedule, pajamas were allowed. I’d decided against it since I wasn’t bolstered by a gaggle to give me strength. But I will rock my Girls Night Out DC Comics pjs at a conference yet :0)

In the room there were piles of magazines, empty folders, scissors, glue sticks and tape spread out on the tables. I perused the selections of titles trying to find something that related to the book that still hung like a nimbus cloud inside my gray matter. I had an inkling of the characters, an almost concrete conflict and yet I hadn’t decided where I needed to go.

Slowly I built layer upon layer, shaping my conglomeration until it made perfect sense. While I did that my story worked itself out. This is the magical piece I came up with:

Since I’m a visual person anyway, I think I had a bit of a head started compared to the others. My design background didn’t hurt either. But I was still touched when the coordinator wanted to show it to everyone and ooh over it like a baby.

Now I’ll interpret what this jumble of images and words means to me. Hopefully you’ll have an epiphany too while you follow along the journey of CASTING SPELLS.

The left side represents my heroine who is a witch. At the top I have the word “Magic” which defines who she is and what is most important to her. Below that is a group of girls, which represents her weekly meeting of witchly business. As a leader of her small group, she is “Driven” especially when it comes to championing her cause—stopping degradation of magic users. The bottom picture where the dark haired lady is blowing a kiss is a personification of my heroine's love of nature and of wishing to "live happily ever now”. Beside that is a sensual footnote where the coffee she drinks has froth shaped like a lady. This is also a little hint at her change from a country woman into a sophisticated lady.

On the right side we see the hero. He’s made it his life’s work to create a place bred to find anyone connected to magic and therefore a person who can cure his affliction—a curse. The drawing in the corner reminded me of an architectural sketch. The way he hand made everything is reflected in the blurb that reads: "Everyone says you should ask the experts, but guess what? Sometimes the expert is you." Below that is a castle, which is at the center of his amusement park and provides his hideaway. In the middle, there are examples of rides, which are also places the two of them go to. (Can you say turning points?) The bottom shows a bathroom, which is a place of sanctuary for the hero and where the heroine must go against her original plan to defeat him. Oh…and I’ll bet you’re wondering about that wolf and the huge shapeshifter footer. Yep, you guessed it. He’s a werewolf. And he is most definitely “an alluring mix of urban and earthy”.

And in the middle they collide and their love is formed. Everything culminates around the “aromatics elixir” at the center. With it the hero can once again be all man, and she will be able to call him hers. (Who wouldn’t want their man thanking them daily for being so gifted?) But it’s also because of their love that he realizes if the elixir can’t be found that he can be happy. Therefore, “love changes, and in change is true.” The three linked back and white pictures represent their hesitancy at first that blossoms into a closeness born from a shared secret. For both of them, the one-of-a kind relationship is “love because it’s the only true adventure.” I was immediately drawn to the intimacy of the bathroom picture, especially the line “You can’t hurry love. And why would you want to?” (What more could a reader ask for?) If you were a werewolf or the woman trying to cure him before the next full moon, you’d wish for just such a happy ending, right?

So there you have it, a little glimpse of the craziness behind the book. Now I just have to stop listening to my creative voice, which steers me off track to do mock book covers and banners.

___________________

Two of the ripped out lines were cropped off thanks to the size of the collage. The first is the heart of the book because it's all about "love, loss and transformation" literally. And the happy ending comes true because "When you love someone, all your saved-up wishes start coming out."



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3 comments:

Savanna Kougar said...

Skylar, what a wonderful way to create your story. I luv collages and that's a beauty. I'm always afraid if I get too much into the visual art of my story, I won't get it actually written. Does that come up for you?

Skylar Masey said...

Yes, most definitely! But I've tried to keep myself from doing any "design" things until I'm halfway through (or all the way). Otherwise, it's a waste if I don't have a product to promote or pitch:0)

I used to do heavy description when I first started writing because I wanted to set the scene. Of course, then I had too much inner monologue!

Lynda K. Scott said...

Skylar, that collage and your thoughts behind its creation are fantastic! I've never done one, certainly not to that degree, but I can see how it would assist in the creation of a book.

And it sure makes me want to read the book!