All this business of cover design is…I don’t want to say tedious, because that’s not right. It’s exciting to watch it come together. I supposed persnickety might be right. Or picky. I’m not sure if there is a word that’s just right for it. Bottom line is, you want to get it right. The cover is what grabs a reader’s attention in the first place, so that’s its first job: catch the eye.
But after that, you’ve got to use it to do the book itself justice. I’ll admit that, in the future, this might not be as big a concern, what with the advent of ebooks and all. But right now, print is still way up there on everyone’s list, so you’ve got to do something. And I think people will still want some kind of cover design for advertising purposes, even if we go all electronic on our reading (if you want an interesting take on this, read Burning the Page by Jason Merkowski).
So, without further ado, here is what I hope will be the final design for Spree:
About the only real change from what I posted last time is an added blurb from Dusty Richards, Spur Award winning Western novelist, as well as some slight changes to the teaser on the back cover. I’m really happy with it, and pretty much everyone who’s seen it says it’s a great cover.
Again, I can’t take full credit for that. Although I made a suggestion about the car, the rest has been Casey Cowan at Oghma Creative Media.
And just to show you what else Casey can do for you, I also met with him to finalize a design for the banner for my Facebook page (what FB calls the cover photo). Again, it reflects the cover design and will change with each book.
That Two Strikes & Blue Collars is a tag line we come up with to try and describe my writing. It refers to the characters I write about, since they’re everyday folks, for the most part. The Two Strikes has to do with the characters in Spree, both of which have two strikes against them in the three-strike system most states have adopted to deal with habitual lawbreakers. The Blue Collars is more in reference to the kinds of characters who inhabit my Rural Empires setting. And by the way, if you want, go on over to my author page on Facebook and like it. I need some followers! Lol.
Last but not least, there’s my business card design:
As you can see, it’s an adaptation of the cover, with my email and blog addresses added at the bottom. Casey had another design that included the book’s title along with my name, but I’d been thinking of a design almost like this for several days and he quickly changed it around. All this was done in Photoshop (somehow I doubt I’m giving any trade secrets away there).
We still have some promo materials to go, though, such as a book poster and author poster for conventions, and there’ll be bookmarks for me to hand out with signed copies, I’m sure. As we get these done, I’ll be including them here, though the bookmarks will be variations on the same theme. That’s the key here: making a design that can be adapted to several different forms and used for promotional materials. I’ll keep you updated on all that as we go. Meanwhile, I believe Duke is about done with the editing, so I’ll be going through that process soon, I hope. I’ll update everyone on that, as well.