One of the first things i have to do, once i’ve received all of the bits and pieces of the book (manuscript, art, maps, and whatnot), is that i have to figure out a general overall look and design for each of the pages. I always strive to create something interesting, but at the same time doesn’t get in the way of being able to read the thing. And, if at all possible, enable the book to exhibit some of the feel and mood of the book.
In the case of Arrius Lurco, i wanted it to reflect a bit of the Roman era in which it’s situated. That means no gothy/destroyed fonts, or futuristic laser blasts bisecting the pages. Last week, i was able to get something together in my brain that i thought would work for the main content of the book, and after some tinkering and scanning and tweaking and cursing with InDesign, i’ve got something that i’m confident will work. I sent off an example to Tom at MRP so he can get an idea of what the pages will look like…and whilst i await his reaction, i’m continuing to plug away. Now that i at least have a framework to use as a foundation, i can start the big task of getting all the content in. If there are changes that need to be made with the page design, i can always alter them in the master pages later.