The last few weeks have been very busy giving talks around Nelson to community groups…
Today I saw, for the first time, my book with the new cover. I had been told that in terms of marketing, my cover wasn’t saying,this is a really good crime novel, therefore it would be hard to attract crime readers. One look at this cover and it simply screams Australia, heat and mystery and has my Detective Robbie Gray, standing front and centre on a railway line. I really wanted her Doc Martin boots to stand out, but they got a bit lost in the heat and the haze of the drought in Melbourne, but I do love it and I am so glad the designer stuck to those colours of Australia which were on the original cover.
Today I also received from the UK, three narrators voice clips and from those I was to select one to narrate the book. They were all Australians and unfortunately their voices didn’t suit reading a crime novel, and as my detective is a kiwi, she would not be talking with a nasal Queensland twang. I have declined all three and asked for a Kiwi or Brit to narrate. With no disrespect to my Australian friends, somehow a strong Australian accent really jarred and I asked for someone with a serious, and slow voice who respected the gravitas of the plot and didn’t sound like she had an IQ of a gnat.
The other good news is that I now have a wonderful new editor and cant wait to start working with her. Every writer depends on an editor to sharpen their book, and I do not underestimate their value on how a book turns out. People are asking me if this second novel is as good and at this stage, having been immersed in writing it for so long, I am no longer able to judge. That is when it is time for a break, put it down for a month and come back to it with fresh eyes.