Fantasy novels, their artwork and synopsis

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MarkJH
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Fantasy novels, their artwork and synopsis

Postby MarkJH » Mon May 28, 2007 7:48 pm

Hi everyone,

I’m very happy to say that I’ve just had my debut novel published and would love to swap thoughts and opinions on what makes a compelling read. With this in mind, what do you think attracts a potential reader? Would it be the front cover like mine below or is it more likely to be on the strength of the synopsis? Just how important is the cover art and what really determines our decision to invest the time to actually sit down and read a book? As a new author, I feel these questions are very important, so any insights you can give will be greatly appreciated.

Image

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mamuta
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Postby mamuta » Fri Jun 01, 2007 12:46 pm

Hi, and congratulations! I'm a fan of fantasy and science - fiction novels. I prefer very simple covers: not so many colours, not so many symbols. Synopsis is important, I like to know something about author. In my opinion, you should decide first who is your TARGET: your potential reader and consequently choose the proper cover and additional information.
Best wishes :)

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Thanks!

Postby MarkJH » Fri Jun 01, 2007 4:17 pm

Hi,

Thanks for replying. I agree that the synopsis is the most important thing. The cover can encourage someone to pick up a book for a closer look, but it's really the synopsis that counts. If you get a chance I'd be very interested to hear your thoughts on my synopsis (you can find it on Amazon).

Thanks again!

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Postby mamuta » Mon Jun 04, 2007 11:32 am

Firstly, as an author forgive me please telling anything without reading your novel. I've only read your book description and I'll try to express my impressions:
- I classyfied your book as a novel directed to young people (are they your planned TARGET?);
- your description is so accurate, that I started to consider is it worth reading: no questions to think, too many answers;
- you should mention something about the main mystic (?) creature - the White Wolf -to make him more mysterious.
I hope I've described all properly - I'm not a native speaker.
Best wishes :)

MarkJH
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Thank you

Postby MarkJH » Mon Jun 04, 2007 5:33 pm

Thanks for taking the time to read it and give me your impressions. I appreciate it. It's difficult to capture the style and tone of a book in a short synopsis, but hopefully when people actually read it they will feel the story is worthwhile.

Thanks again :)

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Postby MarkJH » Tue Jun 12, 2007 1:40 pm

Hi,

I've posted an extract from my book at this link: http://hometown.aol.co.uk/markjohnhockl ... ywork.html

I would be very happy to hear your opinions on it.

Thanks :)

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Postby MarkJH » Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:41 am

Just to let anyone know who may be interested that I've added another excerpt from my book The Magic Lands at this link: http://hometown.aol.co.uk/markjohnhockl ... ywork.html

As always, feedback would be very much appreciated.

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Postby Dixie » Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:45 am

Hi Mark, I'd love to read your book. Maybe I'll buy at Amazon.

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Postby illusion » Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:19 pm

congratulations :)) I so envy people who can write or do anything else which takes talent. I've always wanted to do something creative when I was a little girl I would try to draw, sing, paint and write but I felt the things I created were so amateur that I gave up and focused on admiring other talented people's work...

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Postby MarkJH » Mon Jul 16, 2007 8:44 pm

Dixie wrote:Hi Mark, I'd love to read your book. Maybe I'll buy at Amazon.


That would be great Dixie :) Let me know if you get it as I would be very interested to hear your opinions on the story. And please feel free to ask questions if any come to mind.

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Postby MarkJH » Mon Jul 16, 2007 8:48 pm

illusion wrote:congratulations :)) I so envy people who can write or do anything else which takes talent. I've always wanted to do something creative when I was a little girl I would try to draw, sing, paint and write but I felt the things I created were so amateur that I gave up and focused on admiring other talented people's work...


Thanks! I'm sure there are plenty of things you do well. You seem like a nice person and that's the most important thing :)

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Postby Dixie » Mon Jul 16, 2007 9:08 pm

illusion wrote:congratulations :)) I so envy people who can write or do anything else which takes talent. I've always wanted to do something creative when I was a little girl I would try to draw, sing, paint and write but I felt the things I created were so amateur that I gave up and focused on admiring other talented people's work...


Me too. When I was small I used to write stories. But it never went further than that :roll:

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Postby illusion » Tue Jul 17, 2007 11:35 am

MarkJH wrote:
illusion wrote:congratulations :)) I so envy people who can write or do anything else which takes talent. I've always wanted to do something creative when I was a little girl I would try to draw, sing, paint and write but I felt the things I created were so amateur that I gave up and focused on admiring other talented people's work...


Thanks! I'm sure there are plenty of things you do well. You seem like a nice person and that's the most important thing :)


yeah, I can eat pizza every day and never get bored of it :) I've found that out during my college when I was unable to cook myself a tasty meal ;)

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Postby MarkJH » Sun Jul 29, 2007 6:40 am

Just a quick update on my book for those whom have shown an interest. I've pasted in a review from Amazon US that I think gives a gives a good impression of what the book is really like.


'One might look at The Magic Lands and find the title a little generic, and the summary may be a little cliche, but if you were to pick it up you'll see that it is full of suprises. The story is quite a roller coaster and the plot can become utterly unpredictable. I should also mention, that this isn't little red riding hood. The story is dark, bringing up memories of another dark fantasy, Pan's Labrynth. Like Pan's Labrynth,and any good fable, there is an underlying message behind it all and it is a message definitely worth hearing'.

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Postby Dixie » Sun Jul 29, 2007 9:40 am

Sounds really interesting, Mark.

And since we have the privilege of having a real writer here at EC, why don't you tell us a little bit more about yourself and your work?

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Postby MarkJH » Sun Jul 29, 2007 9:50 am

Hi Dixie,

That's an invitation that could lead to me rambling on and on about my influences, my childhood living with pygmies in the Amazon rainforest and my slightly sureal adventures at boarding school in Outer Mongolia. But I think that would probably be very boring! Anyway, thanks for your kind words about the book. Seriously, I would be more than happy to tell you whatever you'd like to know. Although authors can be notoriously shy :)

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Postby Tora » Sun Jul 29, 2007 9:58 am

A live author in EC! It's a great honour I suppose. I've just read a synopsis on the Net about your book and customers' comments are praising I must say, congratulations!

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Postby Dixie » Sun Jul 29, 2007 8:10 pm

MarkJH wrote:Hi Dixie,

That's an invitation that could lead to me rambling on and on about my influences, my childhood living with pygmies in the Amazon rainforest and my slightly sureal adventures at boarding school in Outer Mongolia. But I think that would probably be very boring! Anyway, thanks for your kind words about the book. Seriously, I would be more than happy to tell you whatever you'd like to know. Although authors can be notoriously shy :)


How can you mix all those elements with the word boring? :D I would be very pleased to hear about your adventures! ;)

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Postby jrkp » Mon Jul 30, 2007 4:27 pm

First at all, Congratulations!!! It's pretty cool to have a writer as a EC member...

To me, every topic you suggested in your first post are very important, specially when you write fantasy novels... Artwork and the title give you the first impression about the plot of the book. For example, when I saw the cover of your book, I mean, the white wolf with its threatening eyes, the two scare children in the middle of the forrest, plus the title of the book, I could suspect what was the plot about. Considering that I found that cover interesting, I read the synopsis, otherwise I hadn't done it.

As you said, the synopsis is maybe the most important thing to decide If you buy a book or not, because it allows you to confirm if your first impression is correct or not....

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Postby MarkJH » Mon Jul 30, 2007 7:29 pm

Thanks jrkp :) Really pleased you liked the cover. What did you think of the synopsis? Did it keep your interest? And I would be very interested to hear what you think of the excerpts too.

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Postby jrkp » Tue Jul 31, 2007 4:34 pm

Well, first at all, I must confess that I'm not a fan to read fanstasy books. Anyway, When I started to read the synopsis of your book, I believed that I was reading a copy of "The Nardia's Chronicles", at least regarding the beginning of the book, you know, when the two friend climb a tree and then they are transported to a fanstastic world when they have to fight against an evil force (I this case it's represented as a white wolf).. But then, I realized that I was wrong, because the story is not just about the eternal fight of good against evil, it's more about the journey of two boys crossing the path from chilhood to adulthood....

That impression was confirmed when I read the book excerpt number 2, especially the part where Jack tries to run away from his reality and Mo encourages him to face it, in other words, he shows Jack that he won't resolve his problems taking shelter on his dreams, but he will do it dealing with them. I think we all (child and adult)can relate with that situation....

Also I can related with that part where Jack is possessed by his own insecurities, to the point at which he begins to doubt of his own existence (Who am I?).....

Well, those points keep me interesting to read your book, because those are problems that everyone can feel identified with. Also It's written in a simple language, which means that I, as a English learner, can read it without using the dictionary.....


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