Judging a Book by Its Cover

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Can you, should you, judge a book by its cover?

How important is that book cover?

Josh: "Are you getting all metaphorical with me? You need a good looking book cover to intice someone to dive into the book and see what it's all about. Don't base your entire opinion off of it, but it's definetely the jumping off point."

Rose: "Sure, you need a cover that makes someone reach out and hold your book."

Angela: "Very, very! I Scan book shelves wherever I find them...grocery stores, drugstores, etc...and, believe me, that is the first thing you--or at least I--see!"

Bee: "The book cover is critically important – I think that the artwork for “Lessons in Taxidermy” is a central element of the work. Most writers are not lucky enough to have much say in how their books look; I was able to use art made by one of my dearest friends, who is also a character introduced in the first chapter."

Jason: "If you can get your books on the shelves of a book store, or rather in a display, you’ll find out it’s very important.

Even those of us “in the know” can still get caught by a good cover."

Gwen: "Very important. It is the first thing a reader will see, and if it is high quality, readers will equate that quality with the story inside, and be more likely to purchase it. It’s important to reflect the truth of the words inside—otherwise, you haven’t given your own work the due it deserves, and you have misled readers in the meantime."

Laurel: "Important! The look and the feel of it. And the title."

bard: "this is like asking "how important is that album cover anyway?" know that I am not one of those people who will look at a book cover and be necessarily attracted or repelled by it . . . because I have seen a lot of terrible book covers: wrong typeset, wrong illustration .... I would PREFER a decent cover, but it will not sway my decision to buy or read . . . for OTHERS though . . . in this culture of appearance, well, it is all hit and miss then . know the audience."

Gaëlle: "I used to think that they were very important, but they can be great and have atrocious writing inside, and now all the classics have generic covers and they contain gold. So, don’t be fooled."

Ina: "Hee! Sometimes a book cover WILL make me pick up the book to read the back, but I think to the general public it's probably VERY important."

Heather: "The cover is essential to your sales. I've spoken to many people who purchase books based on the cover, so it has to be quality and reflect what's between."

Jude: "I think a good cover is extremely important. If the cover doesn't match or compliment what's inside, you can lose readers before they've even seen what's inside. If you've got some hunky man tied up and gagged, then open it up to find out you're bought a 'how to tie a granny knot' book, you're going to be a lil upset. Misleading is a sure way to guarantee the person who bought your book won't do it again, and will most likely spread the word.

But, you get a good cover, something that reflects what the story is about and does it in a tasteful, possibly with a touch of risqué, you'll drag em in and they'll want more."

Kim: "I think it's very important, but I also think that authors need to trust the publisher on this one. I sent my editor about 20 different cover designs for my book. I loved all of them, he hated all of them. When he sent me the art for what is now the cover, I loved it. It was better than anything I showed him. I've gotten lots of compliments on the cover, so I guess that says more than I can."

Kat: "To me, it's very important. It's where the title of the book is, and if that title catches my eye, then I'm more likely to buy the book. (I'm talking about books I have never been encouraged to read by a friend etc).."

Stephen: "The book cover is vital. It’s so personal. It shows you really care. You’ll accept my gift if it’s nice, but you’re slighted if I wrapped it shoddy. I understand you’re left with little choice if you’re writing about 16th century cutlery, but abandon those rigid templates and use imagination. Additionally, it’s the cover that catches the eye of those who are not really looking."

For all the info on the authors participating, go here.

To state your own thoughts, use the 'Discuss This' button to the right!

© Gracie


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