Redefying the ‘standard’ of The Novel
Books have been printed the same way for decades. Novels are cheaply printed and are in themselves characterless, do not set the bar for the story in terms of quality, and do not allow for creativity, even from the perspective of the writer. And despite having publishing offers, this was something that Pepperkayn set out to change with Candyfloss Girl.
Traditional printed books usually have black text from the Goudy or Times New Roman font family printed onto white, off-white or cream paper. They incorporate no colour, very few or no images, have standard page numbering and do not have text morph to reflect the mood of a character or scene.
Another tradition for the cover is to have the author’s name spread in a large font right across the centre with the book’s title being much smaller laid over a background image or artwork which often has no direct bearing on the story or its characters, or conjures up the wrong image for the book overall. Books like this are often lost amongst a shelf packed with others that follow this exact same design.
For ‘Candyfloss Girl’, Pepperkayn wanted to break this tradition so opted for a completely different approach to storytelling and the printed novel.
Not wanting the ‘first impression’ aesthetic to be compromised in any way, Pepperkayn designed a completely black front cover intentionally excluding his own name and having nothing but the book’s title in a custom font; removed the title from the spine, replacing it with an image of the strobe patterning of a record turntable which relates to the profession of the main character; the page edges are finished black; on the rear cover was placed an ‘after the fact’ quotation from the main character instead of the usual ‘blurb’ or synopsis as to not give anything away or raise expectations; redesigned the barcode to be more subtle; then wrapped the whole cover in a soft-touch matte laminate making it a very tactile item.
Inside, the pages themselves are black (not just their edges); the text is pale pink and printed in a serif-less font with the text kerning and lines spacing increased to make it easier to read; and the page numbers read vertically and are positioned on the outside edge of each page.
Throughout the book there are inserted graphics that are used to emphasise particular parts of the story and make the reader feel more personally involved.
The Candyfloss Girl series.
For the follow-on books, the title on the cover, as with the first book indicates the number in the story’s sequence. For example, the ‘L’ in ‘Candyfloss’ is a number ‘1’ whereas in the second book ‘Army of me’, the ‘R’ is replaced by a number ‘2’, and in ‘Relent’, the second ‘E’ is replaced with a number ‘3’.
As for the page numbers, these run concurrent throughout the series. However, the prequel ‘Delaney’ has a page count which moves backwards and has separate numbered page links to the first 'Candyfloss Girl' book which enables the reader to reinsert the 'Delaney' sub-plot.
GENRE: Super-hero | Thriller | Action | Drama | 15+
Can be purchased online from ETSY
from 'Candyfloss Girl'
'If in life there is one lesson to be learned, be it this;
with imagination, focus and determination, anything can be.'
'I don't pretend to be anything other than who I am.
I'm not even sure why I function the way I do, nor why
I was made this way.
What I do know, is that I never wanted to be a hero.