So this month I MUST, I MUST pick out material for a cover for "LIES IN CHANCE" the novel I'm going to epub this summer. Everything is in line for a green light except for the stuff I have to do. You know, the formatting and the cover.
I've lined up Nicola Martinez, the wonderful artist who gave me my beautiful cover for Dream in Color. All I have to do is send her some ideas and a few online images and she'll get at it for me.
Which is why I'm stuck.
See, when Nicola did the work with Dream in Color, I just filled out a form and she did the rest. I didn't know what my dream cover would be until she created the cover. I'm not an artist. Worse yet, I'm not a person who reads because of what's on the cover. I generally pick my reading material by author, by topic, and by the blurb on the back.
But I will admit to this: I've picked up my share of books BECAUSE the cover interested me.
We all do our share of judging books by their cover. We don't admit to it, but we do. And don't be fooled: Just because a book is published electronically doesn't mean the cover isn't important. Quite the opposite is true. Just read author J. A. Konrath's opinion on the matter. A good cover, a good story, and good writing. That's what you need.
The thing about doing it all yourself is that...well, you're the only one looking at the work before it goes out the door. Granted, Nicola is working on the cover, and I have someone helping me with the formatting for this book. But everything else, all the final decisions, are mine. The final edits, mine. The final cover, mine. The title, mine. It's a little scary flying solo, I'll be honest!
I heard at a recent Mad City Romance meeting that sales for digital romance novels are through the roof because women who were once upon a time embarrassed to be caught reading something with such a racy cover can now read in peace with their digital readers. No one is the wiser. While this would tend to support the idea that the cover no longer matters, I can speak from experience, that shopping for a digital book is still driven by the basics, and the cover is one of them.
It was easy with Dream in Color. I filled out a form. What does the Hero look like, what does the Heroine look like? Is there a special animal in the book? Something else?
Nicola hit on all points...except the dog. But to be fair, the dog isn't as big a deal in the story as the car and the guitar, and she got that spot on.
Now, while Nicola will work her magic, I'm still the one picking the actual image for the book. And it's is very important because people still do judge a book by its cover. Even when it's a cover they'll hide from everyone else.
I'm at a point in my career where I want to support myself with my writing. Which means every aspect of sales and marketing has to be clicking.
Which means I have work to do!
Meanwhile, the rest of you...go forth and WRITE!