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 project 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–>
To 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 about 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?