Monday, November 7, 2011

Cover makeover

The cover image for Try Not to Breathe (my novel coming out in January) that appears in the publisher's catalog and on the advance review copies is this:

It's a beautiful image that captures much of the symbolism of the book (rain, glass, etc.), and I was certainly happy with it. In fact, assured by the catalog copy and the ARC covers that this was the final cover, I had some bookmarks and postcards made.

But publishers are no different from authors in tweaking their work until they achieve the desired effect. In fact, the cover of my previous book changed from the hardcover edition to the paperback. And Try Not to Breathe now has a new cover, which will (I believe) be on the finished copies:

This new cover is bolder, edgier, more modern-looking, I think. And so I will have new bookmarks made, and those of you who have the earlier version can cherish them as "limited edition rare original versions!" ;-)

I'm endlessly fascinated by book covers. Seeing a cover is just about my favorite part of the publishing process--my cover, other authors' covers, it doesn't matter. I love seeing official covers and fans' reimaginings of covers and comparing covers on different editions. I would be both thrilled and scared by the opportunity to design my own cover. As it is, I love seeing how my publisher's designer envisions the book. It's a visual response to a text work, and it acts as both a translation of and an advertisement for the work.

I always hope you like the cover. But at the end of the day, I really hope you like the words inside!


  1. I'm married to a graphic designer who used to design book covers. And yes, though I have strong opinions, it's the words inside that matter

  2. Aw. I really, really like the first cover. The new version remind me of the hardcover of The Secret Year.

    No matter the cover, I look forward to reading Try Not To Breathe.

  3. Awwwww, I liked the first one a lot. This new one is all right, but I prefer the other. Too bad :( but yes, it's true that the words between the covers matter a lot more. I still really want to read it!

  4. I love them both! So exciting!

  5. the new cover does remind me of the hard cover of TSY. I like both covers for different reasons, but can't wait to read what's inside!

  6. Dear Jenn,
    The new one is great! I adore it! Those eyelashes are the best.
    All best,

  7. I like the new cover just as much as the first one. I'm not the only one whose noticed the similarity to The Secret Year. I actually like that fact because it sort of identifies the books as coming from the same author. There's a connecting thread between the covers. A "brand" image, if you will.

    I come from a marketing/corporate communications background so this kind of stuff resonates with me.

    Will the first cover be the cover of the paperback edition?

  8. I love the new cover with the rain.

  9. Thanks, everyone, for your comments! I don't know what awaits this book and its new cover, but I hope it finds awesome readers like you. :-)