C is for (Book) Covers

CWhoever coined the phrase, “You can’t judge a book by its cover,” was only partly right. We shouldn’t, but we all know that we do. How can we not?
No, it’s not fair, but who said fair’s got anything to do with it?
As publishers, the burden is on us to come up with the cover that invites readers who actually might like the book to pick it up and check it out.

Cold Saké novelette, Kindle edition
Cold Saké, by Katherine M. Lawrence

Our first cover for our first book, Cold Sake, is, we feel, quite beautiful. But does it help potential readers judge our book accurately? The sluggish sales combined with high ratings suggest not—or at least, so we suspect.
As such, we are planning a completely different design for Kate’s mega-epic saga also set in medieval Japan, also featuring Yamabuki, the woman samurai.
Because if people are going to go ahead and judge a book by its cover anyway, then we are going to try to make covers that help them judge accurately.
Meanwhile, Bo Diddley!

Sing along now.

Yeah, you can’t judge a fish by lookin’ in the pond
You can’t judge right from looking at the wrong
You can’t judge one by looking at the other
You can’t judge a book by looking at the cover

0 thoughts on “C is for (Book) Covers”

  1. Avatar

    Good choice for a topic. It was interesting to learn something new about you as well. I agree, that a cover counts. That is beautiful art work on that book. Too bad sales have not been up to the level of the art.

  2. Avatar

    I agree, that is a beautiful cover. It isn’t evocative enough, perhaps? Which is a shame.
    Thanks for listing your post at My 500 Words. I’m enjoying this blog very much.
    Laura

  3. Laura Lis Scott

    ljandrie57, Laura, msmouse7, thanks re the cover. But does it convey ‘young woman samurai of adventure faces ghosts in a haunted inn’? We’re wondering if the cover looks too much like a Japanese art history book.
    Thanks for reading!

    1. Avatar

      Hmmm. I do not get a samurai vs. ghost from the cover, but the title with the cover art certainly does not say art history book. At least it doesn’t to me.

  4. Avatar

    When I’m at a book sale and everything is cheap, I pick up books in this general progression:
    1) authors I know/titles I’ve heard of
    2) Book covers (or sometimes how pretty the spine is)
    It doesn’t mean I’ll definitely buy the book – but there’ll be more chance of me giving it a chance than a gaudy, ugly cover that I’m not interested in
    anna
    Deeply Shallow

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Illustration of Yamabuki from Katherine M Lawrence's Sword of the Taka Samurai series

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