Monday, April 23, 2012

Who is Designing the Covers?

One of my pet-peeves lately has been a lot of the covers on books. This is one of the reasons I decided to self-publish so I can have my own design. Of course, the big name publishers have nice covers, but the smaller, independent ones must have kids straight out of design school or maybe they are all out of romance novel design school. But what ever the case, they all look like romance novel covers. I think if it's not a romance novel, it doesn't need to have pictures or drawings of people on there. Let me give you an example. If the book is a fantasy novel, such as mine, I don't want to see a woman standing on a hill with a sword in her hand. I personally think it's tacky. I will give you another example, the first book in Game of Thrones. It has a drawing of a guy on a horse with a wolf that looks as though an armature drew it. When the cover was re-done to just a crown, it looks so much better. It almost commands you to read it.

One of the first things that draws a person to a book, is the cover, next, the blurb on the back. If I see a book with a face in the background, such as superimposed, or a sexy man with a beautiful woman, I think romance. I don't think murder mystery, or historical fiction. If I see a drawing of a chair on the beach, I think it's a woman's literature book, not a thriller. I found this short video that I would love to share with you. Take a little time to watch it and let me know what you think. I would love to hear your opinions on the matter. I don't want my book cheapened by a bad cover, but most writers don't have a choice, unless they do it themselves.

This is Chip Kidd- Designing books is no laughing matter. Enjoy, and don't forget to leave a comment. I love to hear your thoughts!

Love ya, Lisa


  1. Lisa, great post! I do agree with you that there are a lot of book jackets out there today that look like they were thrown together by the high school art department (although I've known some really great high school artists, my son for one).

    The video was fantastic and so is Mr. Kidd. He has a passion about the physicality of the book that I share. He is so right about the art's representation of the author's work.

    I so hope that my son can do the artwork for my book. I want to give him that chance. He is a graphic artist like Chip Kidd, and I believe he has the talent to create something beautiful.

    You're right, book design isn't a laughing matter, but Chip Kidd did a great job of putting that point across with humor.

    Robin from R.G. Calkins Writes

  2. I know, he was hilarious! I enjoyed watching his silly antidotes, but fun!

  3. I find a lot of times the cover is absolutely what draws me in. I cannot wait to see what Mike pulls out for you. I think it is going to be a great impression of the world you have created.

  4. I hope so Brandie, I am trying to be patient since Mike can take a long time to get things done, but I know, as always, it will be excellent!