My first REAL copy of Eleanor & Park arrived today . . .
(This is the UK version, which goes on sale April 12. It’s coming out in the U.S., too, but not until January or February 2013. If you’re in the U.S. and don’t want to wait, you can order it from amazon.co.uk and have it shipped here, all for about $30.)
I knew I’d be getting a copy of Eleanor & Park soon, of course, but it was still a surprise to slide it out of the envelope. More than a surprise — it took my breath away for a second.
In a way, this book makes being published feel real for me. Even though it’s my second book and even though Attachments has been on shelves for more than a year, this one feels more real.
I read once in an Isaac Asimov book (I can’t remember which one) that there are only three numbers — zero, one and infinity. Once you have two of something, you have to assume that there are more out there.
Having two books makes me feel like I’m not a fluke. Like I have it in me to get there and back again. It makes me believe that there are more stories in me, more characters. That I’m not a vessel with limited volume.
Also, and I’ll probably write about this more some day, this book feels very close to me. I took a lot of risks in it — I didn’t write it from any sort of comfortable distance. When I hold this book in my hands, I can hardly believe that it really exists. I can’t believe I was ever so brave.
So . . . presenting Eleanor & Park, the book.
Isn’t the spine lovely?
And I love the locker details on the back. There’s a little Easter Egg in there …
I’m crazy about this cover. My publisher, Orion, did an amazing job. The illustrations were done by an illustrator named Debbie Powell, who also did the illustrations for the UK Attachments paperback.
I feel like her illustrations just make my books feel so smart. And so me. (Not that I’m smart . . .) The colors are the same colors inside my house, and even the handwriting resonates with me.
The one thing that I asked to be changed on either cover was the illustration of Eleanor.
Initially she was pretty thin . . .
I knew that the illustration wasn’t meant to be literal — Park doesn’t have a skateboard in the book — but Eleanor, the character, is definitely not thin. It made me sad to put her on a diet for the book cover.
Orion was wonderful about this and made Eleanor just a bit thicker, which I appreciated.
Now I’m getting excited about the U.S. cover. It will be completely different. Which I love. I get to watch the book be reborn again and again . . .
[Update: A very smart person on Twitter helped me figure out which Asimov book that was -- The Gods Themselves. Such a good book.]