Thursday, February 28, 2013
The Birth of a Cover
I'm so glad I did not have the responsibility of this cover on my back. For those who don't know, The Carolina Slade Series is a traditionally published series through Bell Bridge Books out of Memphis, TN. I love my publisher. They decide on the cover. They might ask my feedback on color or if something in the picture isn't accurate, but for the most part, I get little say.
When you self-publish, you have all the say-so in the world in terms of the cover. That's a good AND a bad situation to me. I'm not sure my artistic eye is all that sophisticated. Authors assume they know best what to place on a cover. I'm glad the choice isn't totally mine to make.
The design clearly shows the beginnings of a brand. I love the format. Originally the stripe containing my name on this cover's proofs was green. I felt it too close to the Lowcountry Bribe cover, and when sitting on a bookshelf, the spines looked almost identical instead of as two separate books in the series. I know...who looks at a spine anymore. Well, I just didn't want to risk it, you know?
Also, I wanted a shrimp boat, but the publisher wanted a lighthouse. Down here in my neck of the woods, lighthouses mean North Carolina, and if you are from either state, you know that you do NOT confuse the two. The first lighthouse was striped, like a few NC lighthouses. The publisher listened to me, researched the fact there were 22 lighthouses in SC to determine it was safe to put a lighthouse on the cover, then researched THE lighthouse mentioned in the book to be accurate. The lighthouse then lost its stripes and became solid white.
It's amazing what goes into a cover. I'm humbled at what an artist does. And I'm grateful that I have a publisher that takes charge but with empathy with a writer's concern. Good balance.
(I'll keep you updated on Tidewater Murder's release!)