Because reasons, it is now time to work on producing print copies of my collection Eastlick and Other Stories, published last October by Book View Cafe. Despite being swamped with a massive novel rewrite, a full inn of Valentine’s weekend guests, and packing up to leave the island the day after tomorrow.
Since Book View as an official entity is currently only an e-book publisher, those of us who want to do physical books are more or less doing it on our own. (With advice and support and encouragement from the team, of course.)
And since I need this done quickly, because reasons, I hired a designer to put the book together for me, rather than buying InDesign (and the new computer I’d need to run it) and learning the program. (Though I will be doing that later this year, I think.)
The proof looks gorgeous! Except…e-books are different from print books, in that print books have, you know, pages and things. Right-hand and left-hand pages. And a certain sort of layout about them.
All of which is to say that when I got my proof, I immediately realized that I had a blank right-hand page before the table of contents which just would not do.
So what does one put there? An acknowledgements and/or dedication page? A second title page? An epigraph?
Well, all of those answers are correct; I thought an epigraph would be awesome.
I searched the internet and found just a perfect little quote from Neil Gaiman. Sent it to the designer; he designed it up perfectly; it looks GREAT.
Then I got to wondering…do I need Mr. Gaiman’s permission?
I asked around. Opinions varied. mindyklasky recommended I do so.
So last night I wrote Mr. Gaiman’s assistant, explaining about the book, and how I think Mr. Gaiman is so marvelous, and may I use the quote, etc etc.
And the assistant wrote back this morning, a very kind and courteous email, regretting that Mr. Gaiman cannot grant permission for such things, because he gets hundreds of requests a year like this, and cannot read all the books, and using a quote like that implies an endorsement, so…very sorry.
Which, of course. I hadn’t seen it that way, but it was perfectly obvious, once pointed out. (And I’m glad I asked!)
Now I’m searching the internet for public domain quotes about stories. I’ve got something from The Odyssey which I think should be safe. It’s not quite as perfect as Mr. Gaiman’s quote, but if I can’t find anything better, it will certainly do.
Oh, and stay tuned, if you want a print version of my collection, gorgeous books will be available shortly!