The Cover Artist Search (Concluded!)
Back when I was posting my stories on DeviantArt, I collaborated with a lot of artists there (hence the material for the gallery). I also like to think that I have some applicable photoshop skills. So, I figured, crafting the cover for my first book is going to be a breeze! Then I did some research on the matter…
It turns out that the number one suggestion out there is:
Don’t do the cover yourself and don’t have your friends do it.
And, admittedly, that makes sense... The purpose of the book cover is to draw the reader’s attention – spark their curiosity, and there are tested strategies for achieving that. In short, the book cover is a marketing prop, and its design should be left to someone who understands that and knows how to utilize it. Logical, right? But, there’s one thing that bugged me about that approach... I didn’t want a generic cover.
Let’s be honest, if you go on Amazon and browse through any one specific genre, you’ll probably notice a clear pattern. Most book covers follow a similar, if not the same template, and honestly, fuck that… I get that those templates exist for a reason, they obviously sell well, and they can be pretty, but even so. As someone who never published anything, I fail to see how a generic cover would help my book.
I mean, between two books with similar covers, which one are you more likely to pick up: the one from an unknown author, or the one from a person/publisher with some credit to their name? Besides, this might be my only chance at publishing a book. I’d rather not waste it by appeasing a crowd that might not even exist.
So, in the end, I’ve decided that having a cover that is more to my liking and true to my story was more important than following trends. That being said, however, I still wanted it to be done professionally, with at least some market appeal. Therefore, I set off to find an experienced cover designer, one willing to experiment a bit and work on an original concept.
I browsed some places around the web, DeviantArt included, but ended up going back to Reedsy – a platform where I found the editor for Fragments. Same as with my editor search, I contacted five artists there with details of my book and waited to hear their offers. It turned out that two of them did covers for some of the books that I have on my bookshelf! Yet, I ended up choosing someone else for the job. Someone who I believed then, and know now, was the best person for this project. Her name is Cristiana Leone, and I’m thrilled that she’s doing the cover for Order of the Spirits: Fragments!
Cris and I talked a lot about different ideas, and how we could approach the issue of having a unique take on the cover and still keep it in line with some of the modern trends that we both like. Going in, I knew that we were on the same page, but still, when Cristiana sent me her first sketches, I was blown away… She came up with this amazing concept for the cover that was spot on!
Seriously, the cover for Fragments is already looking better than I could’ve imagined! Watching Cristiana’s concept develop from a simple sketch to something more over these past few weeks was an exhilarating experience for me. So much so, in fact, that we’ll probably end up doing some book illustrations too! (More on that some other time! Probably...)
Anyway, I’m very tempted to show you where we currently are with the cover, but I don’t want to ruin the big reveal. No worries, though. I suspect we’re not far from the final product, so stay tuned! And in the meantime, be sure to check Cristiana’s website where you can see some of her other works.
All right, I think I’ll leave it at that for now... The artist search went great, the book cover is well on its way, and the final artwork is going to be fucking amazing. What’s more to say?
‘Till next time!