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Getting under the covers...

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Initial post: 11 Oct 2011 16:25:27 BDT
T. Elliott says:
Hello folks,

*warning* Independent Published Author *warning*

If you ignored the warning I must assume you will not jump on me for starting this thread because although not a direct self-promotion, it is connected with my own product in the first instance.

I wanted to know what people thought of the cover I have on my book:

Discord of Lupinda vol.1 The Awakened

In addition, I wondered what people thought about the cover and its purpose for a Kindle book. Do we still need to create the semblance of a printed book cover, or should Kindle covers serve a different purpose? Is the Author name what you look for on a cover or do you prefer the image and the title to be most prominent?

I ask because of the variety that exists in the market place, both printed and solely Kindle. In some instances the Author name practically is the cover art. Maybe it is the introvert in me, but I find this strange.

Your thoughts are most welcome.

Blessed be

Posted on 11 Oct 2011 17:51:06 BDT
Tolkeinesque says:
Hi Tony,
Firstly, I haven't read your book, however, the cover, although nicely "arty", gives me no clue as to what lies betwixt the covers. Personally, I cannot see the point in investing in cover art for a Kindle book - they appear at the end of the book and really, by that time, bear no relevance to the contents. Just my thoughts.........

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Oct 2011 10:17:56 BDT
T. Elliott says:
Hello Tolkeinesque,

Fortunately I invested no more than a tube of paint, a white board and a few hours of my own time before scanning he piece to make it into something electronic.

The book will not always be exclusively Kindle format .

Posted on 13 Oct 2011 12:54:00 BDT
Tony, I'm quite ambivalent about it. probably because I'm not all that keen on the cover for Banned Underground. But that was the publisher's choice, and I don't have a say.

That's a positive to self publishing, as I had some really good artwork I wanted to use - and the publisher didn't.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Oct 2011 23:28:38 BDT
Hi Tony,

I love the artwork but agree with Tolk' that it doesn't give any obvious clues to the content. I take it you're an Aubrey Beardsley fan? I don't know if it's just me, but the artwork has a distinctly sexual evocation!

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Oct 2011 21:01:46 BDT
T. Elliott says:
Ah Will, but would you prefer the cover of your choice over the clout of a publisher when it comes to promotion? I am simply exhausted and only making small steps out of obscurity.

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Oct 2011 21:07:57 BDT
T. Elliott says:
Wow C.Johnson.

I had never heard of Aubrey, but I did a Google search and her work is stunning. Thanks for the indirect promo. Her work reminds me of some old tarot card packs I have stashed away.

Interesting that you pick up sexual tones from the design. It had not been my intention, but I design my pieces with the skin in mind, considering their ability to be a tattoo. Maybe it is subconscious coming through.

Thanks for your comment.

Posted on 14 Oct 2011 22:54:44 BDT
Call me Clive, Tony, please, and I'm only too happy to introduce you to Aubrey (who's a man, by the way - 'b' and not 'd' - an old name admittedly). One of my favourite artists. Very idiosyncratic and powerfully sexual, especially given his time (late 19thC). He inspired a lot of my own art many moons ago - the joy of Indian Ink and plenty of time, eh!

A lot of good stuff comes from the subconscious but it's usually wise counsel to winnow it for public consumption.

Anyway, nice to see some original cover artwork. Keep up the good work. BTW, what is the connection with your story? I've only had a chance to read a few pages from your sample as yet.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Oct 2011 13:43:21 BDT
T. Elliott says:
The painting depicts the pivotal character from the trilogy who is mentioned in the sample, but appears properly in the storyline later on in Vol.1. Without inadvertently laying down a spoiler... the movement of the lines represent his connection with the land and the echoes between his lines and those of the trees and ferns surrounding him are a reference to the fluidity of that relationship. The way the trees bend around him as if reaching for him to either embrace or ensnare (and it is both all at once) was to represent how those that have the power to change the world as they walk their path must also accept that the changed world will in return change them.

Do what thou will but know it returns threefold.

As a fellow artist you probably understand; the painting always has more meaning to me than those that see it. I have created a cover for a book that only makes sense after it has been read. Haha.

Posted on 18 Oct 2011 21:38:28 BDT
Tolkeinesque says:
Clive, many thanks for the introduction to Aubrey Beardsley. My wife and I have just been enjoying some of his many images and have been very impressed by them. They seem timeless. Oh and Tony, I have your book in my list of downloads to be read soon!


Posted on 18 Oct 2011 23:24:24 BDT
Tony: Artwork supporting stories - always a tricky one that. It's much more trivial when they're in-line and supporting a specific act or location but covers have to sum up a whole work, give a good flavour and, of course, entice the reader in. I pondered mine for some time before deciding simplicity was the only way to tackle it's quite complex threads. Instead of literal depiction I chose a design that very much evokes the feel of the book. So, as with your own choice, my cover's only fully understandable a fair way into the reading.
The comments I've so far received all appear to support that aim, that my design imparts the character, feel and unusual and original theme of the book. I'm glad really as all my previous ideas would have given the entirely wrong impression of its genre, never mind story.
I like the rationale behind your own design and yes, it does entice me in to read it. It's on my list to go beyond the sample. I'd be interested in views on my own cover from those who'd care to pass that way - Leiyatel's Embrace

Tolkeinesque or Peter, if I may: You're most welcome. A very rewarding artist, Mr Beardsley. I always loved the cheeky humour, especially in some of the detail. A very English sense of humour, one that doesn't take itself at all seriously - on the surface. Certainly timeless but then isn't all great work, by very definition?

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Oct 2011 16:07:31 BDT
T. Elliott says:
Thank you Tolk.

Please do let me know what you think of it. Vol.2 - Incursion will be available from the 15th December. (Proofreader is 70% through it and he claims there isn't too much red ink, so this could be easily achieved... I hope.)

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Oct 2011 16:09:18 BDT
T. Elliott says:

I do like your cover. There is a very Celtic feel to the tree and the concept of Stone Tree is definitely echoed in the design. I may need to think about how clear my title is considering how clear yours shows up.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Oct 2011 16:54:10 BDT
I'm certainly pleased at how clear the wording is, even at quite small icon sizes. The design does seem to stand out against more elaborate covers, which can't go amiss.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Apr 2012 21:27:21 BDT
Tolkeinesque says:
Tony, don't know if you'll see this post but I have now read your book. Very enjoyable read and I'm looking forward to the next installment

Posted on 13 Apr 2012 21:50:06 BDT
Last edited by the author on 13 Apr 2012 21:51:34 BDT
Jim Webster says:
Actually the original poster raises an interesting point. To an extent I think that we do need cover art because people are often visual and we like something to 'see' especially when we browse a kindle store, just as when we browse a bookshop.
I discussed my cover and stressed I wanted something 'real', so whilst I wanted a sword I didn't want something that had too many 'spiky bits'.
Not wishing to break any rules with regards plugging your own book, but anyone can put my name into Amazon and see the picture on the Kindle.
It is very different to that chosen by the original poster in "Discord of Lupinda vol.1 The Awakened" but I felt his was evocative and to me creates a feel.That was what I tried to do, but I wanted a different feel, more 'real' and more 'pragmatic'

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Apr 2012 11:58:04 BDT
Garscadden says:
I think book covers are tremendously important myself - first in grabbing ones attention, then as a branding tool (think Joe Abercrombies books, Iain Banks', John Courtenay-Grimwoods Arabesque trilogy, pretty much *any* well known genre author...)

A long time ago I worked in a Xerox research centre, there were various corporate banners around - one of which was "You can't judge a book by it's cover, but you can make it worth a second look." maybe a bit wishy washy, but it always stuck with me.

(another was about it being good to be paranoid - strange places research centres)

Posted on 14 Apr 2012 12:02:18 BDT
Garscadden says:
I assume this Swords for a Dead Lady is your book? I love that the name and title are clear - the pic seems a bit cluttered. Are those sword blanks (is that the term)? I love the mail and planks though. I also really like the blurb - the light opera definitely gives it zing :)

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Apr 2012 12:21:40 BDT
Last edited by the author on 14 Apr 2012 12:22:54 BDT
Jim Webster says:
That's the one, I said initially I wanted a sword and a mail shirt, and the publishers already had the one you see, literally just laid down on the table. There is something steel on top of the sword, going off to the left (I'm not sure what it is).
One guy reviewed it on another website and described it as 'vancian' which for me is the highest praise he could have come up with. Another chap read the book and his comment was "no one can call this tolkinesque" which whilst I am fond of LoTR, I also regarded as high praise.
If it whets your appetite the next one includes no opera but has high fashion instead ;-))
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Discussion in:  fantasy discussion forum
Participants:  6
Total posts:  19
Initial post:  11 Oct 2011
Latest post:  14 Apr 2012

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