Occasionally Asked Questions

Is India your real name?
Yes. I’m named after my grandmother. It’s an old-fashioned Southern (U.S.) name. Grandma had at least two friends who shared her name, so it was like the “Jennifer” of the nineteen-oughts in Atlanta. In Gone with the Wind, Ashley Wilkes’s sister is named India; if I recall correctly, she doesn’t have much of a role in the movie, but in the book she’s a major bitch.
Are you from India?
No. I am a native New Yorker.
Are you Indian?
Like most persons of African descent in the U.S., I am 1/4 Cherokee princess. And 1/4 Russian, 1/4 Hungarian, 1/32 Irish, 1/32 Norwegian, and a pinch of god only knows, with everything else being African royalty, of course. In a word, American. My mother’s maternal grandmother really did look very Native American, but, no, I’m not Indian in any way that explains my name in the slightest.
Have you ever been to India?
Nope. I have great affection for the country as a source of brilliance, beauty, fine cuisine, fun movies, and mangoes mangoes mangoes, but I have not visited and obviously never can do so because I would spend three-quarters of my trip trying to explain my name.
Is “Amos” pronounced “EY-mis” or “AH-mos”?
We call ourselves “EY-mis,” but with a name like mine, you learn to answer to pretty much anything.
Are you related to Famous Amos?
Yes, actually. Distantly.
So . . . what do you do, exactly, designing book interiors? Do you pick the fonts?
Yep, that’s all there is to it. Your cat could do it.
Your site seems mostly to be about book design, but sometimes you post stuff about editing and Web development. Are you a designer, or a Web designer, or an editor?
Um. In the beginning, there was a lot of other stuff. More relevantly, from 2003 to 2004 I worked as managing editor at Scrappy Independent Publisher X, where in addition to normal managing editorial duties I typeset about half the books and did some copyediting and proofreading. Then until mid-2006 I was a designer and typesetter at Book Packager Y. Then until January 2007 I was a designer at St. Martin’s Press, doing interiors for Tor/Forge. Then I began working at Nextbook, a nonprofit cultural organization, where my title was, somewhat ludicrously, “art director.” (My responsibilities were a mishmash of art direction, typesetting, graphic design, Web development, proofreading, copywriting, and cat herding.) In September 2008 I began a two-year master’s program at NYU‘s Interactive Telecommunications Program, and in spring 2009 I chose to fade out of Nextbook so I could focus on the schooling that I’m paying through the nose for. All along, I’ve been doing freelance editorial work and design, and, yes, I still do that.
Do you design book covers?
I’m primarily a text designer, but yes, I have done some covers.
How can I get in touch with you?
Through the contact page, of course.
I posted a comment. Why didn’t it show up?
I moderate comments somewhat, so it may be stuck in the approval queue. Or I may have trashed it. Have you read the comment policy?
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