Today offered an opportunity to cast away my to-do list and go with the flow. My imagination seized upon it, hungry for play – though y’all know I feed it daily and feed it well. It wanted to explore cover ideas for The Glory Days of Aimée Bonnard. I already had a cover I liked, but I’ve been thinking a lot about covers lately, and I’ve joined a Facebook critique group where I was both excited and terrified to post my creation and ask for feedback. The suggestions were plentiful and led in a direction I had anticipated. The cover should convey the genre of the book at a glance. So I added a few elements that could do that. The resulting cover was something the critique group seemed to like.
But did I like it? Does it look like the cover of a book I’d be tempted to check out, or one I’d be tempted to pass? I’m afraid pass. And it seems that so would my readers. Because when I posted the old and new cover for my readers to discuss, they expressed their preference clearly and pretty much unanimously. My readers like the first cover I made, the simple streamlined one which includes instead of added visual elements a quote from the book as a teaser.
So I’m back to the cover I started with. But I would say today’s work in trying to come up with something better and get feedback was well worth it. It was fun, it was informative, I acquired new skills, and most importantly I created excitement among my readers for this new book. It also reminded me that despite everything one might learn from other authors and experts in general about covers and many other things, my readers and I have similar affinities so it’s important to trust the aesthetic that appeals to me. Like many other things in life, it’s important to stay true to oneself and not be easily swayed. I’ll log in to Amazon tomorrow and change the cover back – but this was fun!