Seeing the “face,” if you will, of the creation that’s been rumbling around in my lonely, half-crazed noggin for a couple of years is (((almost))) as marvelous as seeing the face of a newborn baby.
Publishing houses are all different when it comes to cover design.
Some don’t let their authors have any say or even see samples before the cover design is set. Both of my publishing houses have asked me to send them my ideas and covers of other books I like. That doesn’t mean I get to tell them what to design–it just means they at least consider (which they’re not obligated at all to do) my thoughts and ideas.
The other reason I love, love, love the cover design stage is because–little known fact—I used to be a graphic designer.
I had my own consulting business, if you can believe that. And so as much as I like writing, I am enamoured with graphic design. In fact, I think graphic designers are amazing. The artists who designed the covers of How Sweet the Sound and Then Sings My Soul showed me not just one, but three outstand-incred-amazing choices for each of those books. They ultimately picked the “winner,” but I would have been equally proud of any of them.
Designers really have to know their stuff.
They have to consider how a book looks to readers at all angles, front, back and spine, as well as how it might best catch someone’s eye when it’s and mixed in with a bunch of other books on a shelf. They research what appeals to readers, market trends, and study new design techniques. Not to mention the fact that they have to try to capture the heart of 300+ pages in one single image.
That’s amazing, if you ask me!
Take this upcoming third novel of mine, slated for a summer, 2016, release, for example. I’m still not revealing much about the story, but I can tell you there’s a couple of guys, a couple of girls, a small Indiana town, and a lot of cows involved.
My editor asked me to send them some cover ideas, so here’s what I collected for them:
What about her?
She REALLY wants to be on the cover, but I don’t think they’ll let her…