I’m still going back through and rereading posts on Nicola’s blog Thoughts on Fantasy, and working through what works for me for my future covers. (There are some wonderful posts there.)
I find that I share a lot of tastes with her, so going back and looking, I see this post: 5 Features that Make Me Fall in Love with a Book Cover.
Now, without putting in all the pictures she did, here’s the list.
- Glowing Magic or Fire
- Patterns or Patterned Borders
- Rich Contrasting Colors
Nothing on that list is particularly unusual, but it’s how they’re applied that makes them interesting. I will likely drop one of them…I’m not big on the silhouette thing. And for the Dreaming Death series, fire probably wouldn’t apply since it’s winter in the stories. The glowing part came in in the first book, as do the texture, the border, and the rich colors:
I frankly don’t know how well this cover actually served this novel. Don’t get me wrong, this is a gorgeous cover and I really love it, however…I know the book struggled to sell. (The cover was done in glossy, and I think it would look far better in matte.) But I also think people might think this is a YA book.
This is where it gets awkward.
I’m writing a series that is not YA, but one of the POV characters is 17. It’s not YA. It might be better to call it NA (New Adult), because POV2 is 23. (POV3 is 44, which is far too ancient for a YA reader to read about, right?)
So, in contemplating what I want for the next 3 books, I’m working on a list.
- Striking Titles that would work with Dreaming Death
- A bolder, less busy cover.
There are three titles to come.
- The first book is mostly about how Shironne and Mikael are exploring the binding between them. I’ve been toying with either Bound in Dreams or In Dreaming Bound (hat tip to Michelle Muenzler).
- Book 2 is about Mikael going back and, with Shironne’s help, solving the ten years past murder of his father. So potential titles need to cover that it’s a combination of memory and dreaming, so either In Dreams Remembered or Recalled in Dreams. Neither is particularly awesome.
- Book 3 is about Mikael and Shironne being dragged back to Lee Province, and getting separated, so I was considering In Dreaming Found or Hunted in Dreams. Again, I’m not wild about these.
FWIW, the “____________ in Dreams” trio sounds a bit like Urban Fantasy titles to me, which might give the reader a wrong impression. In Dreaming Found sounds weird to me as well. Meh.
I’m about at the point of crowdsourcing these titles, in hopes that someone can come up with something better.
And what about the covers? What do I want the covers to show?
Here’s the list I’ve come up with:
- An isolated image–just one. Not the buildings AND the hands.
- Easier to read script…something that looks ‘exotic’, but larger and bolder.
- Lighter colors
- Maybe a fancy design or border, but I want most of the noise to come from snow
Will my artist be able to do all these things AND make me happy? Well, that remains to be seen.