Friday, February 02, 2007

February 2, 2007
Another bitterly cold morning here in sunny Arizona. Frost everywhere. I imagine the Snowbirds are geting irritated. $400 a night hotel rooms and it's as cold as Duluth (at noon).

We got a call from Bart at Banta at eleven this morning. The Royal Wade Kimes cover is running on press and he thinks it's too blue, so he stopped the presses and called us (now that's a good rep!). Robert Ray pulled up the cover color numbers and we conference called Dan Harshberger to decide what to do. Banta is overnighting an example and Robert will decide this weekend if it's too blue or let it run. Robert showed me the threshold of color and we determined what is too blue and what is tolerable. The cover has a retro, sepia, or bleached out, tan photo effect and too much blue will kill the effect. Not sure how it happened, but Robert thinks it might be print gain. Nice to have qualified help.

Buckled down at six this morning and consolodated the text fot the Top Secret Project prototype. Emailed it to the Top Secret Writer and am waiting for his feedback. We have a deadline for Feb. 10. We're going to New York in three weeks to meet with our book agent and several publishers.

Speaking of which, Bob Brink set up a big pow wow with one of the Hearst affiliates, and he asked me to move up my trip by one day to make time for a lunch meeting with the head honchos. Rather exciting. Now we really need that prototype done! Of course, I complain but at the same time thrive on this kind of pressure.

I went home for lunch and while I ate an apple, I whipped out some more cover ideas for Paul Cool's Salt War book. He said he liked one of the front-on images from yesteray's sketches so I got the inspiration to build on that. Although the actual "war," or fight, took place in San Elizario, the salt flats they were fighting over are many miles north, near Cornudas. I just was out there last February, driving the back way from Van Horn, Texas, after attending the Alpine Texas Cowboy Auction at Sul Ross University. The Salt Flats aren't as dramatic as you might imagine (not like the Bonneville Salt Flats for example). So I gravitated to a cover image that would feature a lone guard standing in, or on, the salt flats, or running through them, defending them. And from there, I envisioned a desert disolving into a salty heatwave, and what if the lone guard had a reflection? And what if the reflection was the polar opposite: hispanic on top, anglo on the reflection? Or, the other way around? That could be cool. Need to add some oxen in the background as the natives had pulled salt out of there for hundreds of years, and then some Texans came in and you can phone in the rest of the story. Ha.

Onion Headline de Jour
Oprah Stuns Audience With Free Man Giveaway

"Only a life lived for others is worth living."
—Albert Einstein

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