From Bill Walker
Author of “A Note From An Old Acquaintance”:
The irony is that I've always been a writer, from about the age of eight. I wrote my first book at ten, called The Adventures of Mouser, which was a modern day pastiche of Ben and Me, a story about a very intelligent and inventive mouse. Graphic design came much later and very much as an accident.
My father, a lifelong gadgeteer, was getting into computers toward the end of his life. One of the programs he purchased was Adobe PageMaker. I think he got it simply so he could see how the novel he'd started would look in print. After his death, I inherited his computers and software and I guess I started wondering the same thing: How would my books look professionally typeset? Well, I started messing with the program and enjoying another aspect of creativity. In fact, it was almost a complement to what I did with my writing in that it used a different part of my creative mind.
Anyway, around 1998, I had just finished writing Titanic 2012. I was also (and still am) an inveterate collector of books. At that time I was buying a lot of signed editions from Cemetery Dance Publications and had become friendly with Rich Chizmar, the publisher. In one of our conversations, I told him about my new manuscript. He said, "Let me take a look at it." I was flattered, but Rich's meat and potatoes is horror, so I harbored no illusions that sending him Titanic 2012, a mystery/love story, would amount to anything.
Well, a couple of weeks later, he faxes me a contract. He wanted to publish it. And when I told him that I wanted to do the book design for it, too, he said to run with it. That one book led to a freelance career that continues to this day. For me, graphic design is another important aspect in the presentation of the story. My goal as a writer is to entertain and perhaps provoke a bit of thought. My job as a book designer is to make that book as attractive and as readable as possible. The last thing anyone wants is a reader fighting the page because of poor choices in typography and layout. So, that is how I came to be working both sides of the fence.
Thank you very much Bill for your words and the insight as to your motivation. Readers if you are so inspired you can get Bill’s books at Amazon.