MY COVER MAKEOVER
By: Norah Wilson
The beauty of ebooks is that they are not cast in stone. If the author discovers that at the 86% mark, what should have been “her” appears as “he”, it can be fixed. The book can be republished, better and cleaner than before. If the author discovers the same error on p. 272 of a mass market print book, too bad. She’s stuck with it. Ebook format gives us the flexibility to fix things, or even to change the cover if we find the current one is not working.
I did that recently (changed covers) with my Serve and Protect romantic suspense series, and it was a tough decision. In my case, my covers were working for me. That series has been selling steadily, if modestly, all along. Part of me cautioned that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. The old covers were all close-ups of intimate but serious-faced couples. (There is no smiling in romantic suspense. Well, at least not on the covers!) I liked that tight focus on the couple because my brand of romantic suspense is definitely heavier on the romance, and I thought the existing covers did a good job of communicating that. They also had a police tape flash on them, identifying them as part of the Serve and Protect series. On the other hand, the covers were pretty simplistic, and I thought the branding could be better.
So, taking my courage in my hands, I contacted a cover artist (Kim Killion, Hot Damn Designs) and told her what I needed. It turns out the hardest part was finding cover models who could pass as my hero and heroine for each story. I was less concerned about details like eye color or the hair being short/long/curly/straight enough. Rather, I tried to focus on what the couples made me feel and whether that was congruent with the feeling I wanted readers to take away from the story. After a marathon of browsing cover models, I think I accomplished what I set out to do. As I had hoped, the branding is much stronger in the new covers, and I think they still suggest that strong focus on the romance which I didn’t want to lose.
Here’s a before and after of the three novels (and one free novella) in the series:
What do you think, RS fans? Would you be more likely or less likely to click Buy Now for one of these puppies?
BIO: Norah Wilson lives in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada with her husband and two adult children, a Rotti-Lab mix and numerous rats (the pet kind). She has been writing romance a long while, and has finalled multiple times in the Romance Writers of America's Golden Heart contest. She also won Dorchester Publishing's New Voice in Romance contest in 2003. Norah also writes paranormal YA stories with writing partner Heather Doherty, under the name Wilson Doherty. She and Heather also write the hilarious Dix Dodd mysteries under the name N.L. Wilson.