Thursday, June 12, 2008

Book Covers – Love Them or Hate Them?

I don’t know about you, but if I pick up a new book from an unknown author, chances are it’s because of the cover. I always hold my breath right when I hear that my cover is done, dreading what I’ll see when I open my email. I’ve been tremendously lucky with my covers. I’ve known of other authors who are not so lucky. A bad cover can break a book. It doesn’t matter how beautifully written the pages are if the cover is repulsive. I’m sure you’ve seen those covers out there, right? The ones you inwardly cringe when you see a god-awful looking picture on the front. The horror of it if the hero looks like the Hulk on acid.

There’s several sites out on the net focusing on book covers, and others where you get a chance to vote for your worse cover. Cover Cafe has their annual contest and the results for 2007 should be up soon. There is also Romance Book Covers, which has a huge library of cover art.

I stumbled on one I particularly liked. Check out Shiela Stewart’s Book Cover Lover’s Blog. Kathryne Kennedy has two of her covers up. Both of which are beautiful, and Sheila’s are also sexy and romantic.

What do you think?

Carol Webb


Shiela Stewart said...

I totally agree with you. A cover says it all. A bad cover can hold dire repercussions for the author where a good one can bring in a huge crowd.
I've also been fortunate to have great covers for my books and because I love looking at other authors covers, I started Book Cover Lovers.
It's become a huge success thanks to so many wonderful authors of every genre and to people like you, Carol.

Keep those wonderful covers coming. :)

Beth Trissel said...

Yes, indeed. Covers are so important to how a book is perceived. so far, I've been fortunate. Fingers, toes and ears crossed that this trend continues. I am vastly impressed with the cover artists at the Wild Rose.

Natalie Hatch said...

I've read some books because of their covers and found it wanting, whereas I've been guided by friends towards other books I wouldn't have picked up at all and they've been fantastic. I think humans are very much visual creatures, most do like things that catch our eye. So my question is, how do you make sure that your cover is of that quality to attract the most buyers?

Katie Reus said...

I agree! It's terrible, but I won't pick up a book if I don't like the cover unless it's been recommended to me. Unfortunately, I have a book coming out w/ a cover I don't like and I just cringe every time I see it. It's going to be tough to market something I don't care for, especially since this story holds a special place in my heart :(

Carol Webb said...

Thanks Shiela and Beth for posting. Natalie, I'm not sure many authors have the control to ensure their cover is attractive. I think if you're a big name at a house you have some input, but if you're coming in as a new author and then you start making demands, you just might be shooting yourself in the foot.

On my first book, the cover artist did my web site, so I was really lucky that I had a bit of input. I didn't have any on my second, and I was dreading seeing it when it was done. But thank goodness it turned out wonderful.

Carol Webb said...

Katie, I'm sorry to hear you're unhappy with your cover, especially when your book has that special place. Word of mouth can and does work, and I hope it's powerful for your upcoming book.