Sunday, May 04, 2008


I finished last-minute, editor-requested revisions to Knight's Fork last Wednesday...

There are all sorts of things I've done since then, but nothing seems to me to be as interesting as my quest for a temporary hunk.

Not a lot of people know this, but when a model poses for a cover, he doesn't always license every right that a modern author wants and needs. If that is the case, maybe his image cannot go on car door magnets.

The idea of a car door magnet has a strange appeal. I've never been my own billboard before!

Therefore, as soon as I realized that I was on my own, I posted a note on Facebook (my favorite social site) asking if any of my model friends wanted to pose as if they were either examining or cleaning a sword.

The silence was disheartening. So, I wondered if I might re-use one of my previous privately commissioned models, and I emailed the photographer. Alas, it would have cost about as much to re-use the same photo as to license rights to a new one.

A few days later, my photographer friend sent me three views of the model you see above. Like Viggo Mortesen's Aragorn, I very much like the dark and dirty look. Menacing is good when I have Rhett in mind.

However, he had too much clutter about him, and too many dangly bits, and his hand was so far behind his buttock that it could not be moved. (You might call that a technical difficulty.)

So, my obliging friend sent me contact sheets... nine of them, all with views of "Mr Goodrock". Some had too much rock. Some lacked the piercing, full frontal glower, in others, I found myself looking up his nostrils.

Eventually we found a great shot, a little more worried-looking than I might have liked, but Rhett is "forked" and in a very difficult position in the book, so "troubled" would do. Moreover, Rhett is the swordsman of the family, and doesn't have to be immensely buff and ripped, so the less bulgy pecs are better.

Then began the quest for a sword. Much merriment ensued on Facebook, because a surprising number of my friends thought I might be looking for a sword of the warm, pink variety. We got that squared away.

So... behold, the rope has been replaced with a sword, and I gather that it took eleven overlays!

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