Monday, May 15

Judging a cover by its book


You will notice the layout is really wonky--my apologies; I lost the argument with Blogger and it put the pictures wherever it wanted to. - Liz

A couple of weeks ago, I whined wrote about titles, because mine had been changed. I mentioned covers then, I think, and we've talked about them before. I've told and re-told the story (and possibly attributed it to the wrong person more than once) about marketing taking art facts sheets out on the street and tossing them into the air because the covers of our traditionally published books don't always have much to do with the stories themselves.

Cases in point, The Debutante's Second Chance takes place in a small, bucolic town. Hmm... The heroine of Every Time We Say Goodbye has shortish curly red hair. Annie in Always Annie tends toward the flat-chested.








I didn't react well. Ever. I'm not savvy enough to know if the covers made a difference in sales, and I've gotten over the disappointment, but still...it would have been nice if indicators of the story would have made it to the first part of the book people see

Then there are the times when the covers are so right, I could have--if indeed I had an artistic bone in my body--designed them myself. Here are my favorites.






In truth, as a reader I don't pay much attention to covers. Often the only time I even see them is when I order the book from Amazon and then I'm usually author-led, not cover-attracted. What about you? And, while I'm asking, what are your cover loves and hates?

Have a great week!

12 comments:

  1. Your Back to McGuffey's cover is one of my faves--I also love the one from One More Summer--it's perfect. I think covers are less a selling point now with e-books, but they're still important. What matters most is your amazing writing behind the covers...and I'm always sold on that!

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    1. Thanks, Nan. I liked One More Summer, too.

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  2. I'm a visual person, and confess I buy books and wine based on their packaging (and I even know better). But that has little impact on my ultimate enjoyment of the book or wine itself. And if the cover doesn't match the inside... meh, it's not a big deal to me.

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    1. I buy wine if I think the bottle's pretty, so I'm sure not gonna judge you on that one! :-) I don't think other people's covers bother me like mine do...something else to think about.

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  3. I love wading through stock photos and imagining different images as a cover...Somethings it's just a color scheme that attracts me, sometimes it's the image (like the bike from McGuffeys)...I'm a little over the bare-chested-man-covers, mostly because there are so many of them out there at the moment.

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    1. I'm big on images, too. People, not so much, and I never want faces!

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  4. A really bad cover can turn off a reader. I know that because I had a really bad one once. The book is a romantic suspense set in WW2, and it's about the theft of a famous blue diamond, but the cover was so dark, all you could see was the swastika. I had a reviewer say she almost didn't read it because of that, and I don't know how many other readers the offensive cover turned away. Fortunately, my publisher created a new cover for the book, one that I think represents the book much better.

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    1. I'm glad you got a new cover! I have had reader complaints because my covers weren't representative. Oddly enough, the most complaints came about the cover of One More Summer, which Nan loved and I liked all right. Like so many other things in publishing, it's kind of a crapshoot.

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  5. McGuffey's is one of my all time favorites. I'd hand it in my house. Lol Lately, I've been drawn to cottages, bikes, garden posts..or all three together with a beach in the background

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  6. I admit to being a cover girl. The covers are what initially attract me when I'm shopping for a book. But once I like an author, the cover doesn't much matter going forward. When I read a book whereby the cover is not entirely indicative of its content, it doesn't really bother me. I figure it's not the author's fault. Your Back to McGuffey's cover was one of my favorites. Some of your other covers are great too.

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