By Yannick Hill

An epic novel about identity in the internet age

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Cover Design

Time to break the silence as I finally have an update on Versailles, and it's all good news.

I've been getting a few messages from people who pledged for the book, asking about Versailles' whereabouts. Penguin/Random House, who are responsible for the printing and distribution of the trade edition, have deemed late summer 2016 the best time to publish the novel. It's a while to wait yet but timing for the release of a work of debut literary fiction is important because you want to avoid putting it up against, for example, titles written by big-name authors. In other words we want to give the novel its best chance of getting noticed in a very competitive market. So anyway, this means that anyone who pledged for the special-edition hardback of the book should expect their copy in the post in early summer 2016, some time in advance of the trade edition. Before that happens the novel will go through a period of development, namely an edit, and, most excitingly, design.

And it's the cover design I want to talk about now because I have some amazing news on that front. I recently learned that the very talented and innovative illustrator Yehrin Tong will be designing the cover for Versailles. Yehrin recently won the V&A Book Cover Illustration award for her work on Michel Faber's novel The Book of Strange New Things ( From the moment Unbound told me Yehrin might be involved I couldn't stop smiling. Her sensibility, which in her own words is characterised by "tessellating mathematical motifs" and "optical illusions" feels perfectly suited to Versailles' atmosphere, themes and form. Yesterday, I helped put together a brief for Yehrin and I just can't wait to see what she comes up with. The whole thing feels like Christmas to the power of Christmas.

Take a look at her website and you'll see why I'm so delighted:

Yannick xx

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Stevyn Colgan
 Stevyn Colgan says:

That really is fantastic news - she's amazing. A modern Bridget Riley :)

And yes, after having done two books with Unbound (and a third currently funding), and being an avid subscriber, I know all about the frustration of 'the wait' from both the reader and the author sides. One of the big challenges for crowdfunded authors, and crowdfunding companies, is managing people's expectations and impatience. But I don't mean 'impatience' in an insulting way; it's more the comparison with what people have come to expect in this arrival-next-day immediate download world of the 21st century.

There are good and bad times to release books into the wild and authors earn little enough as it is without making things worse with an inappropriate publishing date. What I tell my pledgers is that, just as you have to wait longer for a hand-tailored suit than for something off-the-shelf at Primark, any Unbound book they get will be not only a great read but a beautiful, limited-edition item to read and treasure.

I can't wait for my copy of 'Versailles'.
But I'm prepared to because I know it'll be worth it.

posted 16th December 2015

David Charles
 David Charles says:

Yeah! Looks beautiful. Well done Yannick!

Dammit, I'm going to upgrade my copy right now...

... Any idea *how* I can upgrade my copy?? I got an ebook edition and now I want tree pages!

posted 16th December 2015

Caitlin Harvey
 Caitlin Harvey says:

Hi David, If you contact us via we can send you a direct link to upgrade your pledge. Caitlin.

posted 16th December 2015

Yannick Hill
 Yannick Hill says:

Wise words, Stevyn, nice of you to comment. And I can't wait for you to get the book, it only really comes alive once it's being read.

posted 17th December 2015

Yannick Hill
 Yannick Hill says:

And nice one, David, can't wait to hold it in my hands myself!

posted 17th December 2015

Michael Rowley
 Michael Rowley says:

Can't wait to read the book! Smashing news on the jacket direction, it's going to look wonderful if Yehrin Tong is doing the work. Very exciting!

posted 13th January 2016

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