Evolution of a book cover

A few weeks ago, I offered a sneak peek here on the blog of a new Halloween Organized Mystery I’d written for an upcoming fall anthology that will be released the middle of next month. We authors have moved past the writing and editing stages now and onto the graphic portion of our program, so I thought I’d offer a little behind the scenes cover action. Sound interesting?

There is nothing more fun than working with terrific author friends on an exciting projectMidnight Mysteries we’re doing for our fans, and this anthology has been a blast. All of the stories are brand new, all are 40 pages or more long–two are twice that length–and most of them tie to favorite mystery series we already love to write and our fans have told us they love to read. We wanted our book cover to not only translate that series fun into the graphic, but give readers as much information as we could when the cover was seen online. We liked having all our names on the front, so readers can tell at a glance whose stories are inside, but we also wanted a bit of whimsy to play a role. We sent our designer all our ideas–even preliminary designs Larissa graciously did on Canva (Larissa is doubly talented as an author AND an artist–I’m so jealous) as we all worked through our stream of consciousness ideas. Once our designer received all the info, she took on the challenge and the first cover came back like this first graphic at the right–>

Midnight Mysteries 2To clarify, the “shutterstock” watermark wasn’t going to stay–we knew that–and we liked the balance and placement of everything. But we were concerned if we used the first cover and it went down to the thumbnail size that appears for Amazon search pages…well, our names would likely become just one unreadable block of squiggly lines. And the more we looked and thought about it, the more we decided we might need to get rid of the subtitle, to give the cover a little cleaner look. So, our marvelous (and patient) designer went back to her computer and returned with the option seen at the left.

Nice, huh? We thought so. And we were almost ready to use the design as the final cover until we had one more idea. While the subtitle was great about telling readers more Midnight Mysteries large web sizeabout what was inside, and would still be listed on the anthology’s book page, now that it was gone from the cover readers couldn’t easily see what kind of mysteries the anthology contained. We lost our “cozy.” So, we again went to our very patient and wonderful designer and asked if we could get a tiny bit of the subtitle back onto the cover. This is the final work–>

Well, what do you think? We authors kind of love it ourselves. And since the designer sent it back to us on August 17th–which is Black Cat Day–the cute kitty seems to be giving her meow of approval, too. Okay, maybe her “look” of approval.

What do you think? Is it a “4 paws up” design?

 

 

 

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About ritterames

Ritter Ames is the USA TODAY bestselling author of both the Organized Mysteries and Bodies of Art Mystery series, and lives atop a high green hill in the country with her husband and Labrador retriever. She spends each day globe-trotting the world from her laptop with Pandora blasting into her earbuds, often with the dog snoring at her feet. Much like her mysteries, Ritter’s favorite vacations start in London, then spiral out in every direction. She’s been known to plan trips after researching new books, and keeps a list of “can’t miss” foods to taste along the way.
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18 Responses to Evolution of a book cover

  1. Love it!!! Already tweeted about it…Great job.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Absolutely 4 paws up!!! Love the colors, too; they really stand out. Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It is adorable and provides the info I want. Kudos to your very patient and wonderful designer as well as to your team.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. servedogmom says:

    Definitely 4 Paws up! I’m really glad the authors added the 9 Cozy Tales! As a cozy mystery lover, that would catch my attention.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Doward Wilson says:

    Awesome cover! Makes me want to buy it now! I have to give it 4 Paws & 100+ !

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Four paws up for sure – looking forward to reading this one.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. JoAn V. says:

    Definitely 4 paws on the cover. It has all the info I am looking for when looking at a cover for purchase info.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Cindy C. says:

    So cute! I can’t wait to read it!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Celia Fowler says:

    That’s a great cover — definitely 4 paws up — can’t wait to read it!

    Liked by 1 person

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