Monday, February 19, 2007

Penguin! My Penguin!

Or, I'm Going to Take a Heroine For Whom No One has Provided a Jacket

The real evil, some might say, of an author's situation is their having rather too little power over the marketing and presentation of their work. The unfortunate choice of cover art or artiste can threaten to alloy her enjoyment of sales beyond a particular niche and create a disagreeable consciousness of the most unfavourable perception of the quality of her writing.

The same might be said of the gentle reader, whose choice of material may do a great deal to distress or vex her. With none of the inducements of an offering more attuned to the artistic sensibilities, there remains little beyond obvious cliché for defence when affronted by the prejudices of others. Rare indeed is the cover which unites some of the best blessings of a book's existence; more frequent, those covers which bring grief to the unlucky reader in the form of pointed commentary upon one's state of mind and possession of more hair than wit.

Those who suffer thus may therefore count ourselves extremely fortunate that Penguin have released editions of six classic works whose pristine covers the happy reader may embellish at will, and upon whose blank canvas one may depict as attractive an image as one might wish to present to the idle observer. For the sum of five pounds, your humble blogger has thus secured the purchase of Miss. Austen's fine volume, Emma, and will doubtless present her own raw efforts in the usual haphazard fashion upon their completion and her acquisition of log-in rights to the scanner.

Postscript: On the subject of my last entry, it has occurred to me that this post may be a fitting submission for Beth's own SB Day. However verification of her site reveals that the weekly announcement has yet to appear. Perhaps later.

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