Sunday, September 15, 2013

Judging by looks? It’s just a human trait.

Way back when, over a year ago now (unbelievably!), I wrote this post about judging a book by the cover.  I was in the midst of getting a cover designed for No Mother of Mine and I was just a bit worried about whether or not it would help market my book in a positive way.
Overall, the feedback I received about the cover design of my first book was very positive.  That leaves one down…and many more to go. 

So now I’ve moved on to the second book and came up with this design:

Based on the characters and the story in Best Kept Secrets, the masks are very appropriate when so many of the characters figuratively wear masks to hide the truth about themselves and what’s happening in their lives.  I also like the colors in this cover because it complements the color of my first book when they’re sitting side-by-side. 

Will readers like this cover?  I certainly hope so.  Will it pique their interest?  Draw them in to discover exactly what the book is about?  My fingers are crossed while I hope that will be the case.  That’s because what I said before is still true, readers do tend to judge a book by its cover, especially when they don’t know the author.
How do readers judge a cover?  They may assume things based on what they see on the outside:

The cover is visually stimulating…the story inside must be stimulating, as well.
The cover just doesn’t cut it; it’s boring or too basic…wonder if the story is boring or just your average every-day read?

How about if a reader judges a book by its size?
The book is very long…I’m just not ready for that sort of commitment.

The book is very short…I want something with more depth.
If the cover doesn’t cause a reader to look more closely at the book, at the blurb, at the prologue or the first few pages in the first chapter, you’ve probably lost them for good.  Maybe until someone else tells them, “You’ve really got to read this book!”

Readers are human and we all have our basic human traits.  How we respond to first impressions based on sight alone is certainly one of them.  I’m going to put my faith in those first impressions and believe that once Best Kept Secrets is made available, the cover will satisfy my current readers but also draw new readers in. 
If you have any feedback about my cover or about whether you buy a book based on a book's cover, I’d love to hear it.  And for those waiting for Best Kept Secrets to go on sale, I’m working on the feedback I received from my beta readers and based on my schedule at this point, I would venture to say it’ll be available on-line next week!  I’ll continue to keep you posted…

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