Print Magazine has a terrific look at the cover art on a handful of books, along with some explanation from the designers. It’s a fascinating look into the world of cover design.
Along a related line of thinking, I’ve often wondered about the value of an author’s first draft. For example, I have about a dozen different versions of SOMETHING MISSING, beginning with the first draft that I submitted to my agent almost three years ago. I haven’t looked at that draft since then, but is there any value in posting this initial draft online for public dissemination?
Could a fledgling novelist garner any valuable insights in comparing the first draft with the final version of the book?
Are there book geeks and bibliophiles who would be curious to see the original version of a story or the development of the protagonist or some of the secondary characters from first to final draft?
Would anyone even care to read the first draft of a book like SOMETHING MISSING, as opposed to a classic like THE GREAT GATSBY or SLAUGHTERHOUSE-FIVE?
Or would an author risk embarrassment or mortification in making a first draft available for public consumption?
Would reading a first draft ruin the story by revealing its skeleton, its internal organs, and its previously-excised warts? Would it undo the perceived reality of the story and make the process more clinical than magical?
I’ve had the pleasure of examining the first drafts of some of Robert Frost’s poetry, but is there other material like this out there to be had?
Thoughts? Because clearly I don’t have any. Only unanswered questions.