Publication moves ever closer.
The whole book has been proof edited and I've tooth-combed it. (Is that actually a verb or have I invented one?) I'm going through the process of inserting the illustrations at present, with a view to sending to the formatter on Sunday. Plus the proof editor has offered to cast a final eye over it.
I decided to use the ten pencil drawings as illustrations at the start of each chapter. Unfortunately I could only afford ten so, when I put them in place it looked weird having them on some chapters and not others. There's 35 chapters. 'I know' I thought, having a brilliant idea, 'I'll put drawings on each chapter.' Easier said than done, don't they say'?
First I decided which type of pictures I wanted - animals and birds seemed safe and relevant as they are dotted about all over the story. Plus I naively thought no one would mind me using these type of images. I checked out a very good blackbird, robin and owl on Google images, which I downloaded, then my son, using his sketch app changed the photos into drawings. They looked fabulous. I was on a roll so I included some woodland shots and buildings including Hall Place in Canterbury on the list, because its in the book.
That's where I came unstuck. I'd already had the foresight to check that each image I downloaded had consent to reuse and use commercially without charge but on bringing up the last image the photographer had included a piece on his rights. He advised if one didn't want to be sued (I don't) then his work had to be accredited and also I needed to apply for a Creative Commons licence. Why is my life so complicated?
I was looking at 25 photos, that's 25 accreditations plus the licence, and my nerve went. Plan two., I'm spending a week taking photos myself of the relevant animals and birds which I will turn into drawings for the chapters.
I knew it wouldn't be simple. I spent two hours walking round Margate cemetery Monday evening. I managed to bag several squirrels but the crows, magpies etc were playing silly buggers. I'd sit quietly on a bench seat while they teased me from nearby gravestones or even hopped behind them and stuck their beaks out - I can prove it I have the photos.
Yesterday, Tuesday, I tried rabbits at Baypoint. I managed one retina reflecting eye and a dark shape that could be a shadow. I've still got to find an owl, weasel, seagull, spider, bat and more of the previous. If there are any David Bailey's out there with who have already got photos of these and are not going to insist on accreditation etc please send them here.