I find that working on the cover image of my book helps me work on the text itself. Right now I need clarify my feelings about the book.
The book's working name is Mud and it is set in modern Prague. At first I was playing with classic images of Prague - Charles Bridge and moody spires, but they didn't feel right. For starters the story isn't set in tourist Prague, but in the lovely but less well-known area of Holesovice. But I didn't want to identify that area particularly.
One of the reasons for playing with the cover is that it helps me identify my audience and genre. For many writers that is easy, but I write magic realism which isn't easy to slot into genres and can appeal to a range of audiences. The book is partly a psychological mystery (a main character is a Czech detective) and partly paranormal (the book touches on the Golem legend). I searched for books of these genres with a reference to Prague and got a load of books with moody spires or darkened streets. Maybe I should copy them - if it works... But I don't want to.
I wanted a moody picture but not a conventional one. So I wrote down the key elements of the book. They were:
- the extreme storms and floods of 2013,
- the Golem
- missing female
- male detective.
It was just what I was looking for. There's even a hint of a Golem in those reflections, don't you think?
Now all I've got to do is finish writing the book!