|McClure's new cover art|
This big cover reveal got me to thinking.
How important is the illustration on your book cover?
Many faithful readers follow writers they love, but what about buying from a new author? Polls suggest that the first thing to catch our eye about a book is the cover. If the cover looks interesting, we pick up the book, read the back cover, and if still interested, read the first paragraph or two.
4RV Publishing released my debut YA novel a year and a half ago. Long before it did, I learned the importance of team work. Authors create stories. Editors read, correct, strengthen, and clarify the author's words. Then comes the illustrator. 4RV asked Aidana WillowRaven to create a cover for my book, Victoria and the Ghost. WillowRaven asked me questions about the main character's personal appearance. She asked about the setting and wanted to know important symbols in the story.
|The Cover of my book|
My fifteen-year-old main character wore shorts and flip-flops with her light brown hair loose and always blowing into her face. The ghost brought strange happenings to the setting of Clara Cemetery, in North Texas. (A real place.) One main happening involves a disappearing hopscotch drawing.
Ms. WillowRaven came up with Victoria praying over a hopscotch with trees and a church in the background. The picture tells the reader something is strange about this place.
A book's illustrator is listed on the copyright page of the book, but how often do they get recognition for their work? Yet, their creation helps authors sell books.
My advice to new and old authors is work well with your illustrator. Give her enough detail to see what you see. If you disagree with the arrangement or something in the drawing, speak up and explain. Work as a team to come up with a winning cover. It's important.
Let me leave you with two other book covers, one a new adult A Shadow in the Past, by Melanie Robertson King, and Prairie Dog Cowboy, a YA book by Vivian Zabel.
Think about what you see in these covers. What do you expect? What do you like about these 4 covers? What do you dislike? Think of your own work. Do the covers represent the story?
I would love your feedback. Lastly, we need to recognize our illustrators for work well done. Thank you, Aidana WillowRaven. Thanks to all the team at 4RV Publishing.