In which our heroine, frazzled faux ginger thing that she is, reveals the new cover of her seven month old book and the reasoning behind it.
Greetings and salutations, dear reader.
I’ve made what might be seen as an odd decision. Or, if not odd, extremely unwise on the financial front. I’ve taken a book that I never expected (and still don’t) to sell well, and I’ve thrown more money at it.
Because my income increased, and I’m sort of bad with money for one. And two, because I wasn’t happy with how the book looked.
I bought the old cover premade – a popular choice for indie publishers on a tight budget (which I very much was at the time). Basically, the cover was already finished, and the designer just filled in my name and the book title for a fraction of the cost of commissioning something new.
I loved the cover, and I still think it suits me and the book – but only if you know me, and only once you’ve read the book, which is the best tactic for selling your words to strangers.
To the uninitiated, it’s a little dark (tonally and colour wise) and skews a bit teenage. I worried that it gave the impression that my retellings would be tragic and grim (lowercase g, one m), and it bothered me that it didn’t quite match the style of the illustrations inside.
These things had niggled at me before and shortly after I published, but there wasn’t much I could do about it without an income boost.
And then I went full time with the day job.
One of the many weird things about taking a non-creative full time job are all the conflicting feelings of relief and excitement and shame and guilt. ‘Yay, I have money again!’ ‘Yay, I like this job!’ ‘Yay, I’m no longer a burden on my friends and loved ones!’ ‘Wait, am I still allowed to call myself a writer if I’m not doing it full time?’ ‘Oh crap, please don’t ask me about how my writing is going.’ ‘I’m too tired to write tonight, but then what am I doing the day job for?’
So when it became clear that I had spectacularly failed Camp NaNoWriMo due to my brain and body getting used to the rigours of full time work again, I decided to focus on one thing I could handle, could now afford, and kept me feeling like a writer.
I’ve been following a few cover designers whose work I like over the past few years, and I immediately knew I wanted to work with ebooklaunch.
I like their typography, and I think their books would look completely comfortable on a bookshop shelf, which is important to me.
So I got in touch, and with absolutely no idea of what I wanted the cover to actually look like (I am not a visual artist. At all.), I told them that I wanted the cover to clearly reflect the hopeful tone of the stories and the all-age audience. And then I included an example of my illustrations and some book covers in a similar genre that I liked. And they sent back this.
And I squealed a bit and sent it to some supportive but critical friends for their reaction, in case I was too blinded by love and the need for the amount of money I paid to a complete stranger on the internet to yield extremely positive results. But all reactions matched mine. This was the right cover. It’s bold and pretty, it’s Cinderella without being TOO cliche (I hope), looks great full size and in thumbnail and it looks like it would sit happily on the shelf of a five year old or a fifty year old.
So here we are! Same book, new cover, and a very happy author.
And now, because my brain and body are somewhat more used to the full time thing, I’m going back to writing the next one.