Fox Spirit & Their Foxy Little Pockets…
Fox Pockets: A Tale Of Flash Fiction And Paw Prints…
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Fox Pockets! Small but perfectly formed collections of stories by a den full of talented writers, put together by Fox Spirit books for your enjoyment.
The stories are flash fiction, giving the reader bite sized introductions to Fox Spirit and the writers we love to work with. All designed to fit perfectly into the pocket so you can take a little fox with you everywhere you go.
Stories in Fox Pockets will wander unfettered between genres, mixing horror, fantasy, science fiction and crime.
Cover art is by the talented and fabulous Sarah Anne Langton who is working to create an image for the collection as well as giving each book its own identity.
Well, that’s very kind of Aunty Fox to say so but ten books? TEN BOOKS? That’s a lotta pixels. Exciting an’ scary… in equal measure. And when so many authors are going to be spending so much time scribbling away for these anthologies? I feel the least I can do is try and give them a snappy package for their work to be showcased in.
So I needed to find some sort of identity for the little foxy guys. ‘Foxes’ and ‘pockets’ are a good starting point – love the name – and who doesn’t like foxes, right? But visually I wanted them to be instantly recognisable. So you didn’t even have to look at the copy on the cover. Well, Penguin Books are the past masters of this. Beautiful, clean design. Breathtakingly stylish. Whether it’s their 1950’s collections, or their more contemporary titles, the books pictorial ownership is always striking. So that seemed like a good starting point. Plan.
Well, much googling and getting distracted by shoes an’ Hello Kitty later… Work. Actual work.
The basic grid I decided to used for the Fox Spirit jackets is a tweaked version of Penguin’s early 1960’s science fiction range. It’s a very deliberate nod to how much I adore their graphic design work. Classy, minimal, wonderfully understated. And I love their use of modern art as the perfect accompaniment to the science fiction genre. Penguin’s covers came with an abstract, surrealist tone. A subtle hint of Op Art, a little bit of Pop Art. Not an oil painting of a space station insight. Science fiction and fantasy speak to us of other worlds and other possibilities. Magic. Magick. When ‘any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic’. So I’ve always felt that publishers reliance on – however beautifully executed – traditional illustration for their science fiction/fantasy publications is often not actually as interesting, or innovative, as the titles content itself.
So I liked the feel of working on something visually contemporary. Something that – hopefully – looked like a cool book to take a look at… regardless of any particular interest you may have in genre fiction. And I’ve always admired that Small Press folk have a kinda post-punk ‘do it yourself’ attitude towards publishing. We love books so we’re gonna print books. Nice. A lot of acid colours on black, with with reversed out, décollage images used for Fox Spirits covers come with very a big element CBGB style visuals. I felt that was, in a way, a nice fit. Same principles just applied to the printed word instead. And, as interpretation of the anthology titles left a whole world of creative options open, there’s deliberately a graphic ‘feel’ for each title, rather than any distinct, single image. Hidden away in the illustrations there’s everything from Voodoo veves to Glastonbury Tor – just to try an’ keep all bases covered.
The repeat theme of the fox logo and layout hopefully ties all the images together.
And, publishing should always be fun too, pop the all the covers together and a tiny fox spirit has run across the books, leaving a trail of little paw prints…
So here’s the final jackets. Yup, managed to do ten…
Den Patrick‘s wonderful stories of pirates an’ dreams – ‘Tales Of Jago Fox’ – run across the entire anthology – so they totally deserved a poster of their own…
If you’d like to write for one of these wondrous little publications submissions for the later titles are still open at Fox Spirit right here.
And if you’d like to pop a fox in your pocket – and who wouldn’t – the first of these foxy-paperback-publishing gems is available at Amazon and Lulu featuring amazing tales of piracy from Den Patrick, Catherine Hill, Kit Marlowe, Rahne Sinclair, Chloe Yates, Jenny Barber, Margrét Helgadóttir, Craig Leyenaar, Francesca Terminiello, Christian D’Amico, T.F.Grant, Rob Haines, Ruth Booth, Asher Wismer, Emma Teichmann, K.C.Shaw and S.J.Caunt.
All wonderfully edited by the terribly foxy Adele Wearing!