I knew I’d encountered Jennifer Saunders before I heard her voice the Fairy Godmother in Shrek 2. Not only was she in AbFab, but she was Mrs. Bluberidge in Muppet Treasure Island. (Think about it: “How does she do that?” Yes, indeed.)
I was asked me yesterday if I had any say in the cover for my upcoming book. Authors usually have no say whatsoever, unless they’ve achieved a level of negotiating power where it’s written into their contract. In my case, I do, but only because I’m the series editor as well. (It’s good to be the queen.)
So when I got home last night and found a file of two cover concepts waiting for me, I was excited. The first one was the embodiment of everything that turns my blood cold about the New Age marketing thing. Solid black, with silver writing. “It’s glam!” the design department said. “My book isn’t,” was my reply. I let them know why black and glam don’t do well in selling to serious esoteric readership, which is the target audience of this series. Fortunately, the second concept was lovely: an old brown leather sort of texture, and a white font which I suggested be tweaked to ivory or off-white. The whole thing suggests an old, well-used book.
And, hard on the heels of my editing rant yesterday… the design department had incorrectly transcribed the subtitle of the book, changing the meaning completely.
Covers make or break a book. Somewhere around here there’s a hard copy of an article I wrote for a local book newsletter examining the importance of book covers, and the effects of current trends on sales. When (if) I ever find it, I’ll transcribe it and put it up in the Read section. I know exactly how fortunate I am to be able to nix that first cover, and to give the thumbs-up to the second, with modifications.