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Wednesday, February 24, 2016


Have you ever bought a book because of the cover?  Have you ever rejected a book because of the cover? Deciding on the perfect cover for your book can make or break your sales. I know traditionally published authors rarely get to choose their covers and I've seen some strange choices.

One of my favorite authors had a few titles reissued. It was a medieval historical romance set in Scotland. So why were Texas bluebonnets gracing the cover? If I hadn't already been familiar with the book, I would have thought it was a western.

Another well known author did have a contemporary western set on a ranch outside Houston. Some editor, probably in New York, designed a cover of a cowboy riding his horse down a dirt road along side a ranch house with beautiful mountains in the distance. Huh?  The nearest mountains are over six hundred miles west in Big Bend. These were obviously somewhere in Colorado.

I have to admit, I've put down a book because of cover models who look like teenagers. Who wants a hero who looks like he's fifteen? Even the guy who is prettier than the female model turns me off. Yeah, I know, everyone has their preference.

The sad thing, is, these authors had little or no say in these disastrous covers. I hope it didn't affect their sales, but prolific readers know what's right and what isn't.

With e-publishing, you at least have a little control.  Of course, a professional cover can cost quite a bit. Is it worth it? Readers are quirky. Many do judge a book by its cover.

Choose wisely, ask friends and critique partners, the hope for the best.


  1. Great post, Brenda. Hard lesson to learn when I first went indie. I went the cheap route and had some bad covers I've had to replace with professional covers. Of course, some of the covers for my traditionally published books were awful, too.

  2. Good advice. Personally, I'm turned off by cover boys who have abs that can only be obtained by spending hours at the gym, but I may be in the minority on that!

  3. That's what I love about being an indie writer-- choosing our own covers, whether we make them or buy them and being sure they do fit the characters and setting. :)

  4. Love your post--especially about the mountains near Houston. I've seen that in movies too. *LOL*

  5. Loved your post and used it as a stepping stone to my own tomorrow. Smaller ePubs don't give you a choice. What they give you, you better love. Larger pubs do put out more effort to please the author. Great post!


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