I wanted to ask you a rather strange one. I’ve been working on my book for a while and I use a lot of concept images when I write. I like them because they help me better describe my characters. You know how they say a picture is worth a thousand words?
Well I’ve been looking at a few of my recent works and thought that they might look good in the book itself. Do you think its a good idea to put these images in?
I actually do the exact same thing. I like creating visuals for my characters. That way I can really visualize what they are supposed to look like. So kudos on that.
As for putting them into the book itself…
Well I’ve heard two trains of thought on that one and unfortunately they conflict;
On one side, you have people saying that you absolutely shouldn’t do that. These are the same people who will tell you that adding too many visuals to your cover will take something away from the story because the reader will no longer be able to create their own visuals based on the writing. This argument has merit and in many cases, these people are absolutely correction.
That being said, on the other side you have the people who say that readers will form their own opinion and visuals regardless of what’s on the cover or if there are pictures in the pages. In fact many successful stories out there are indeed enhanced by good visuals. (See Neil Gaiman’s Stardust.)
Personally, I like to take the middle of the road, as usual. A few visuals aren’t a bad thing. Leave a lot to the reader’s imagination, but you don’t need to leave everything. I do also feel that the second crowd is correct that the reader will form their own vision regardless.
I for one absolutely love sharing my concept art and have included it in a couple of my stories… if the art is good enough, that is;
So yeah, go ahead and throw some imagery in there, my advice is just not to overdo it. Don’t dictate to your reader what they should or should not be thinking, but feel free to give ‘hints.’
Hope this helps!
Do you have a question about writing, publishing, my stories, etc? Please feel free to post a comment or email me.
I’ll use those comments to select my next blog post.
I have been writing for several years, have multiple published works, experience with publishing and independent work, so I can hopefully be of assistance.
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Catch you on the flip side!