I love stock photo sites. Even if I don’t actually need a photo for a book cover, I browse them just for fun. If I find a good photo for a future book, especially for my Two-Natured London series – because let me tell you, those similarly posing men are difficult to find – I buy it or save it for a future purchase.
Every once in a while the process goes the other way round. I find a wonderful picture that would make a great book cover and I immediately start to imagine the book I would write to that cover. Nothing ever comes of those books, usually because I don’t have time to write all of them.
Nothing, that is, until now.
A while back I found a couple of beautiful photos that I knew would make a wonderful cover together. Seeing the cover in my mind’s eye, I knew exactly the book I would write. The best part was that I already had the beginning of that book. So I purchased the photos and even tested the cover I would make before starting with the script.
I realised pretty much immediately why I hadn’t finished writing the book. It wasn’t any good. But I had the cover and I wanted to use it. And the manuscript wasn’t hopeless. I liked the setting and the main characters. I simply needed to make the story work.
At first I tried weeding the bad parts out and rewriting the other parts, but that approach didn’t lead to anything. There was too much that needed rewriting. I had to face the fact that if I wanted to use those characters and setting, I would have to write a completely new book. So I did.
It Happened on a Lie is a short romance of a silly kind. And I do mean short and silly. It’s less than 25000 words long and has twists and turns to fill a much larger book. But I like it. It’s romantic and it definitely fits the cover. It’s perhaps a somewhat unorthodox way of writing a book, but I don’t care.
The book is currently in the hands of my editor. I’ll share bits of it once I get it back. In the meanwhile, here is the cover. Don’t you think it’s worth a book?