Let’s talk book covers.
First, you should know:
I technically have a degree in design, with a specialty in typography and book design. Yep. Right industry, wrong position!
This might be the WORST thing to have a degree in if you want to be a writer!!! Because, to answer the question I get asked a BAZILLION* times a week, by both ex-classmates and random passerbys, NO, I DO NOT GET TO DESIGN MY COVER. Really. I swear.
Anyway, this week on the YA Rebels, we’re talking about book covers. And I had to decide, do I go all serious and analytical, or do I go playful? As you can probably tell by the title of this post, as well as the vlog itself, I chose the latter.
But I want to add a short list of (my very subjective) thoughts regarding successful covers…
-Cover should say something about the book. Even if the cover makes more sense after reading, I want it to give me a hint, an inclination of what the book involves.
-Cover should take advantage of type. This is an OFTEN-missed opportunity and it makes my heart sad.
-Cover should not be cluttered.
-Cover should be memorable. I love covers that plant some seed in your mind, some recognizable element that stays with you and then when you see it again, you go OH!
-Covers should try something, take a risk, be playful, and be confident. By this I mean, I don’t like seeing covers that follow in other book’s footsteps because it’s a formula, and “it works”.
-Covers should stand out…BUT should not do so at the detriment of the above factors. Meaning, THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH should probably not be HOT PINK, even if HOT PINK would make it stand out. Shameless gimmick = Sad Victoria. And most likely sad author.**
What do YOU think? What makes a cover good? Do you have any favorites? Do you know WHY you like those covers?
*Perhaps a slight exaggeration.
**Please keep in mind that the author almost never has say, and their words will be “clothed” with a cover they most likely didn’t pick. Meaning, we don’t have control over the first impression (and that is scary). I think almost all authors would like their cover to reflect their book’s content or mood, at least a LITTLE.