This is the package being sent out this month to early readers and influencers. The book in the middle is the Advanced Reading Copy of Spear. On either side is a postcard featuring one of the interior illustrations. I’ll talk about each of those things in depth in future blog posts. Today I want to talk about the fourth item, an enamel pin.
When the marketing folks at Tordotcom told me they were commissioning an enamel pin as part of their sales and marketing campaign, I wasn’t sure how I felt. Obviously, Yay! that there would be a marketing campaign. But also Eh? because what if it was some cheap, lightweight tchotchke—a mile from the kind of thing a Spear reader might be interested in?
So, yeah: I needn’t have doubted. The pin turns out to be a rather splendid, substantial, lovely-in-the-hand object. Beautifully coloured, gorgeously designed, and astonishingly textured. It feels weighty and handmade.
When I opened the box the first thing that struck me was the size. That round shield is about 4 cm in diameter, and the two prongs on the back—like sharp earring posts—are held in place by two sturdy black rubber stoppers, big enough to need their own raised grip. You could pin this to canvas, leather—a belt, a book bag, the lapel of a winter topcoat—and it will stay secure. Equally, you could pin it to a t-shirt (which is what I did to test it; it looked very handsome against black).
The second thing is that the pin will stick to a magnet—as I found out when I put it on the table and click, it stuck to my iPad. So for those of you who wear expensive clothes, you could file the posts off and just stick a magnet behind your material. That way you needn’t be afraid of poking holes in your cashmere or silk or suede, or the beautiful wool cloth of your Armani jacket :)
Third, the detail. Look at the banding around the shield, and those tiny individual rivets. The shading and texture on the petals. The cross-piece below the leaf-shaped blade. Not to mention the yellow centres of the forget-me-nots.
Which brings me to the fourth thing, the amazing colour—and how beautifully it matches Rovina Cai’s artwork. (which I’ve already talked about elsewhere and will talk about more soon.)
Fifth, and best, is how perfectly it encapsulates the spirit of the book: spear—specifically a boar spear—shield, forget-me-nots, and red red red. It honestly couldn’t be better.
How can you get hold of one of these pins? I’m not sure yet. I think (again, I’m not sure yet) they’ll be used as part of some kind of campaign though I’ve no idea if it will be pre- or post-publication. I can promise you that when I know, you’ll know. So if you want one, stay tuned.