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  1. #1
    Registered User gljones's Avatar
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    Soliciting comments on my Cover

    Hello Everyone,
    I'm looking for comments, suggestions, critique on my Fantasy Cover. I wanted something that would cause readers to pause for a second look while browsing.

    I can't figure out how to put the image in this post, but you can see it on
    www.gljonesbooks.com

    Any and all comments welcome. I had no idea that coming up with a cover was going to be difficult!

  2. #2
    We Read for Light Window Bar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gljones View Post
    I can't figure out how to put the image in this post, but you can see it on
    www.gljonesbooks.com
    Hi GL--

    Because internet access to the cover image already exists on your blog, you're halfway there. Go to your blog and right click the image. You will see a list of choices. Choose "Copy Image Location," which is the is the internet address for the cover image only, rather than the whole page. Then, try re-posting here. You'll see a toolbar on the SFFWorld posting format. The sixth icon from the right is the "insert image" icon. Click on it and paste the image address you brought over from your blog into the message you're posting here. (If my instructions are lame, you could contact TMSO, aka Nila White, who walked me through this when I was posting).

    By the way, I've viewed your cover at several levels of shrinkage-vs-magnification. It's gripping. If the book is as good, you're on your way.

    Have fun-- WB
    Last edited by Window Bar; November 11th, 2012 at 10:30 PM. Reason: format

  3. #3
    G.L. Lathian G.L. Lathian's Avatar
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    It's interesting... but I'd like to know the target audience of your book.

    I did venture over to Amazon to catch a glimpse of the text. Sorry to say, it needs work - I spotted a typo on the first page of your opening chapter. Too many first time authors make the mistake of publishing their novels before they're ready. I suggest pulling it down and editing it a few more times. The writing is extremely stilted and doesn't flow from sentence to sentence. You also have a real habit of overusing the same word. For instance, when the hooded man on horseback is introduced in the second chapter you describe him as the rider, twelve times in one page. You're not going to gain a readership if the text is hard to read

    Having said that, it seems like an interesting start to the book. I suggest you do some re-writes and see what it looks like. Remember, people have to want to buy your book over established authors at a price like $6. Your book needs to be perfect, because the people your pricing your book with have reputations, structural editors, copy editors, PR and marketing teams, etc.

    Sorry to be a bearer of bad news. The great thing is: you don't have to listen to me!

  4. #4
    KMTolan kmtolan's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, it looks a tad "Amateur Hour" with discordant foreground and background as well as the font. No where near as bad as I've seen, so kudos there, but not professional as it could be.

    Might I suggest the following:

    1. Full background graphic, not just middle.
    2. Make the skull more a semi-transparent blend of the blue background save for the eyes.
    3. Go for a font that is a complementary and contrasting tone of the base blue color.

    Kerry
    Last edited by kmtolan; November 12th, 2012 at 02:59 PM.

  5. #5
    Registered User gljones's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the comments. The target for this book is young males, 13-22. Somebody above asked that question. I'm trying to catch their eye with this.
    I've pretty much decided on hiring out the next cover, as I don't have the time/patience/talent/interest for it in the future.

  6. #6
    Since you wrote ALL comments - your entire site is javascript.
    It is not very SEO-able that way, and I had trouble viewing it properly in a variety of arcane browsers.
    Igor

  7. #7
    Registered User Eddy Gemmell's Avatar
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    From looking at it, I imagined that it was a YA audience you were looking to hit. I also wondered what a skull had to do with a mage or a thief. I also agree with another comment here that the font looks a bit DIY. Needs to be sharper and more professional. I have no idea how you do that but those were my initial reactions.

  8. #8
    Registered User gljones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eddy Gemmell View Post
    From looking at it, I imagined that it was a YA audience you were looking to hit. I also wondered what a skull had to do with a mage or a thief. I also agree with another comment here that the font looks a bit DIY. Needs to be sharper and more professional. I have no idea how you do that but those were my initial reactions.
    Yes I am targeting YA, in fact It's tagged that way in Amazon. The main character gets assaulted by a skeleton in the first action scene, so hence the skull. I am targeting 13-20 year old males, absolutely. I wanted a cover that would catch the eye of that particular demographic. I don't have any idea how the font was done either. I'll have to ask my graphics guy.

  9. #9
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    I think the cover is good for a YA audience. Honestly it didn't appear to me as though the background and foreground were discordant fwiw. I did feel like it was maybe a bit too much in your face. It jumps right out at you. After I got over the sense of hyperbole, I still was on the fence about whether I personally would want to pick up this book and read it because the cover suggests that the story might be really in your face as well. But I am 32 years old so well out of the target demographic, and I know they are playing ridiculous video games and reading graphic novels with insane over-the-top plotlines. So I can see how my opinion should be tempered.

  10. #10
    Registered User gljones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by andrewscott View Post
    I think the cover is good for a YA audience. Honestly it didn't appear to me as though the background and foreground were discordant fwiw. I did feel like it was maybe a bit too much in your face. It jumps right out at you. After I got over the sense of hyperbole, I still was on the fence about whether I personally would want to pick up this book and read it because the cover suggests that the story might be really in your face as well. But I am 32 years old so well out of the target demographic, and I know they are playing ridiculous video games and reading graphic novels with insane over-the-top plotlines. So I can see how my opinion should be tempered.
    I agree with you 100%. The question I asked myself is how to do you catch the eye of a teenager blowing up stuff all day in over the top video games? I figured I had to have a cover that leaps out and smacks you between the eyes, or they would simply move on. The next question I'm asking myself is how do I reach these guys, they don't typically spend time trolling Amazon/goodreads/smaswords etc...

    If anybody has any ideas, I'm all ears.

  11. #11
    How you grab young male audience - nude flesh, guns and cars, preferably combined.
    Igor

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by gljones View Post
    I agree with you 100%. The question I asked myself is how to do you catch the eye of a teenager blowing up stuff all day in over the top video games? I figured I had to have a cover that leaps out and smacks you between the eyes, or they would simply move on. The next question I'm asking myself is how do I reach these guys, they don't typically spend time trolling Amazon/goodreads/smaswords etc...

    If anybody has any ideas, I'm all ears.
    There is a loooong thread on promotion and marketing right here in the forum, and when I read through it there were some good ideas. One of the main themes I've heard, though, is go to the readers. If you're looking for the teenage boys playing video games, go find some forums where teenage boys are discussing video games. Go to a video game store and see if they're selling any books alongside the games. What do the covers on those books look like? What do the covers of the games look like?

    I agree with others that this cover isn't terrible, but it's not quite there yet, either. I would strongly recommend replacing the font. You can look on www.dafont.com for something that is The crinkly edges will only make it look blurry at a small scale. My personal aesthetic would also be to drop out the background that's behind the skull. You can also take a look at the Amazon top 100 lists in your genre and see what those covers look like.

    I didn't take a look inside as Cononomous did, but the two pieces of advice I hear over and over for self-publishing are pay for a cover and pay for an editor. Both are important investments to help your book compete in a very busy marketplace...

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by gljones View Post
    I agree with you 100%. The question I asked myself is how to do you catch the eye of a teenager blowing up stuff all day in over the top video games? I figured I had to have a cover that leaps out and smacks you between the eyes, or they would simply move on. The next question I'm asking myself is how do I reach these guys, they don't typically spend time trolling Amazon/goodreads/smaswords etc...

    If anybody has any ideas, I'm all ears.
    There is a loooong thread on promotion and marketing right here in the forum, and when I read through it there were some good ideas. One of the main themes I've heard, though, is go to the readers. If you're looking for the teenage boys playing video games, go find some forums where teenage boys are discussing video games. Go to a video game store and see if they're selling any books alongside the games. What do the covers on those books look like? What do the covers of the games look like?

    I agree with others that this cover isn't terrible, but it's not quite there yet, either. I would strongly recommend replacing the font. You can look on www.dafont.com for something that is unique but legible. The crinkly edges will only make it look blurry at a small scale. My personal aesthetic would also be to drop out the background that's behind the skull. You can also take a look at the Amazon top 100 lists in your genre and see what those covers look like.

    I didn't take a look inside as Cononomous did, but the two pieces of advice I hear over and over for self-publishing are pay for a cover and pay for an editor. Both are important investments to help your book compete in a very busy marketplace...
    Last edited by NicoleDreadful; November 17th, 2012 at 12:46 PM.

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