Behind the Cover
I enjoy the process of developing covers in the e-pub world. Each time a manuscript is accepted, the publisher requests an art information form and asks me what I envision: what kind of mood the cover should convey, what my characters look like, what they might be wearing, whether there are special objects that are important in the story - in short, my concept for the cover.
I’m not an artist, so I don’t mind hearing that putting so many characters on the cover will be too cluttered, or that the scene I envisioned won’t work. The cover artist takes my ramblings and runs with them. Most e-pubs allow some back and forth with the author before a cover is finalized, sometimes two or three rounds, although usually the publisher has the final say.
Here are some examples from the Freya’s Bower art form for my recent romantic suspense Nadja’s Literary Cappuccino. Mood: “The heroine is sweet, the suspense builds slowly but gets somewhat dark, the hero is strong and determined; it's a warm story.” Concept: “I’m thinking a steaming mug of cappuccino in the center. The book title is the name of Nadja's coffee shop, so the title could appear as a shop marquee, perhaps. Then possibly the two faces in soft focus, behind or thru the steam of the coffee?”
I’m thrilled with this cover, and it only went through one revision. The notion of “faces through the steam” didn’t work because the steam made the faces look blotchy. In the final result, those faces peering out at us are tender and almost innocent, but dark times lie ahead in the steamy haze.