Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Art of the Cover

One thing Midnight Inker's know is that we have the best cover art in the industry. A famous author once told me that the purpose of a cover is to make a potential reader cross a bookstore to get a closer look--to make said p.r. pick up and touch our books. And after that, with the aid of good back cover copy, to send our baby home with our p.r., so they can read, read, read.
And, if you take a second and scan down the beautiful and diverse cover art displayed at the side of this blog, you'll see that our covers do that with a zing and a pop and a, "Pssst, c'mon over here.!"
A lot goes into that zing and pop, though. A committee decides on the concept. The concept is designed (my newest, shown here, was done by Midnight Ink's talented Kevin Brown). Then the design's flawless execution is carried out by an illustrator (Kim Johnson of Lindgren & Smith paints the illustrations for my Kate London Mysteries).
I want to show you what a difference a cover makes. Below you will see the cover art for the first book in the series. BrigaDOOM. To the right is the Concept that Never Happened.

Now, that cover might be great for some books, but Midnight Ink saw that it just wouldn't work for a mystery series dubbed sexy, sassy, and funny.
Like I said, we have the best covers in the industry--
for a reason
Here's to our covers!
--Susan Goodwill


Mark Terry said...

Looks like you've got a theme going with the dog.

Yes, I think MI has great covers, overall. Kevin Brown did a nice job on mine and I'm curious to see the difference between mine and yours--by the same artist.

Susan Goodwill said...

It's interesting, isn't it. Wildly different concepts, yet both work.
My theme is the dog, the boot, and my little smiley faced Jolly Roger.

Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

Yes, our covers are tops! I get compliments on mine all the time and I'm always excited to see what they'll come up with next.

My covers are done by Ellen Dahl and she won a graphics award for Too Big to Miss.

Nina Wright said...

Cheers to you, Susan, from another Midnight Ink author whose covers are all about the dog.

Artist Bunky Hurter perfectly captures the aristocracy and mischief of Abra the Afghan hound in my Whiskey Mattimoe mysteries. Her work makes me smile every time.


G.M. Malliet said...

My book went through two covers. I liked them both. As I understand it, the cover design is often a source of friction between author and publisher, so I feel v. lucky.

Felicia Donovan said...

It seems we are all in agreement about the excellent covers from Midnight Ink. Ellen Dahl also designs THE BLACK WIDOW AGENCY covers and has done a great job each time.

Covers are the first impression our readers have, so they must capture the essence of the story or the reader might feel duped.

becky said...

From a reader of Midnight Ink & other publishers' books, I am quickly drawn to the MI books because of their originality & color.

Also, the person who arranges the Mystery section at my local Barnes & Nobles says she can predict the future success of a book by looking at its cover.

So thanks, MI cover designers, for interesting & fun book covers!