Poll

What genre does this cover evoke to you?

Romance
2 (3.2%)
Fantasy
4 (6.3%)
Urban Fantasy
34 (54%)
Dark Fantasy
7 (11.1%)
Mystery
0 (0%)
Paranormal romance
12 (19%)
Sci-fi
4 (6.3%)

Total Members Voted: 63

Author Topic: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark  (Read 1456 times)  

Offline VirginiaMcClain

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Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« on: March 13, 2018, 12:35:12 AM »
Update: Taking this cover back into my workshop. As I stated initially, this is an early draft. It's about to undergo a major overhaul thanks to the input I've gotten here. The unanimous feedback that there is too much text and that said text is difficult to read is very useful and will be addressed accordingly. The poll shows that the cover hits the intended genre fairly well, so I'm actually pretty happy with that, but may redesign multiple aspects of the cover anyway. Thanks everyone! Doing covers for my own books is like staring into a mirror so long that my face doesn't make sense any more, it can be difficult to maintain perspective--hence the poll!



(FWIW This is an early draft. One of the reasons I am reluctant to work on my own covers--despite doing cover design professionally--is that I start to wonder if the things I think are problematic actually are or if they are fine but the things I think are fine are problems. Also, I worry that I'm taking my story too literally. Oddly, these are problems I rarely have with other people's books... Anyway, thanks to all these doubts regarding designing my own cover, I'm seeking advice from the collective.)

Yes. I definitely left some red herrings in the poll. Presumably, if the cover is doing its job, no one will pick them. (Now watch you all pick them just to spite me!) ;-)

Bonus points for commenting with your best guess at what the book is about. (Bonus points for what? I have no idea. Winning at life?)

Also welcoming comments on whether or not you can read the title, subtitle, author name etc.

I'm headed to bed and won't get to check on this thread until tomorrow afternoon sometime, so don't be discouraged if I don't reply to anyone for a while. Looking forward to everyone's feedback. Thanks in advance!
« Last Edit: March 14, 2018, 07:51:26 AM by VirginiaMcClain »
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Online Evenstar

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2018, 02:06:52 AM »
To be honest I would have picked Sci-fi (which isn't on the list). All those stars and the alien eyes, I thought she was in space until I scrolled down to the wolf/panther and thought "Oh, it must be shifters, which means paranormal romance?"

So in the end I clicked fantasy.

Offline scott.marmorstein

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2018, 02:19:36 AM »
It's a striking cover, and well put together. It's also a little difficult to read the title at thumb-nail level. I picked 'Dark Fantasy', but, like Evanstar, it's difficult to tell what genre it actually is.

Maybe you're over thinking the whole thing. I do that with my book covers too.
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Offline MelanieCellier

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2018, 02:20:04 AM »
To be honest I would have picked Sci-fi (which isn't on the list). All those stars and the alien eyes, I thought she was in space until I scrolled down to the wolf/panther and thought "Oh, it must be shifters, which means paranormal romance?"

So in the end I clicked fantasy.

That's pretty much exactly where my mind went! "Sci-fi, no wait, shifter. Does she have paranormal romance on the list? Ok, I'm really not sure."

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2018, 02:20:44 AM »
Science Fiction.

I can't read the title very well.

The hand-written font in combination with the girl's stubborn look makes it look like comedy.

I didn't notice the wolf/leopard until I saw the above reply. OK now I can see them, but the eye is not drawn to them at all.

Oh. It says Marmot. I think. I don't think you mean this type of marmot?


Offline C. Gold

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2018, 02:26:33 AM »
To be honest I would have picked Sci-fi (which isn't on the list). All those stars and the alien eyes, I thought she was in space until I scrolled down to the wolf/panther and thought "Oh, it must be shifters, which means paranormal romance?"

So in the end I clicked fantasy.
Yeah, I was looking for the paranormal option as well after going through your sci fi, wait, no thinking. There wasn't one, so I didn't pick a category. It doesn't say romance to me. The thriller font with wolf+cat/green eyes and mention of the average teenage girl/dark matters says this will probably be about some teen shifter paranormal investigation story.

The text is hard to read at the smaller cover sizes.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2018, 02:31:04 AM by C. Gold »

Online Dennis Chekalov

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2018, 02:38:07 AM »
Urban Fantasy (a girl and shifters).
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Offline StellaD

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2018, 02:43:35 AM »
I also thought her a sci fi alien girl until I looked at the pool options. I hard a hard time reading the title on my phone, and my eyes keep thinking Victoria Marmot is the author name.


Offline tdecastro31

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2018, 05:58:58 AM »
I went with Dark Fantasy, because I see nothing urban about the cover at all.  Though it is modern, can Dark Fantasy be modern. I have no idea.  Nonetheless, I love your cover.

Offline Herefortheride

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2018, 06:19:45 AM »
Urban fantasy, easy to identify.
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Offline catlife

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2018, 07:13:03 AM »
I thought PNR and I wan't sure which was the author name till I looked at your avatar.
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Offline Lilly_Frost

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2018, 08:19:13 AM »
Amazon has conditioned me to assume anything with an animal on the cover is a miscategorized erotic paranormal romance/menege thingy.
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Offline StacyC

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2018, 08:51:47 AM »
I thought PNR (but voted UF) and also thought that the title was the author name. I wondered why anyone would want to hide the author name. Even more, I wonder why you would cover part of the title. The title font should be smaller in order to see all of it, and it needs to be darkened/brightened for readability.
  

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Offline joyceharmon

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2018, 11:49:39 AM »
I picked urban fantasy. As I understand it, 'urban' fantasy doesn't necessarily mean cities, but refers to fantasy that's set in our world - am I right on that?

Offline horst5

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2018, 11:57:57 AM »
No, sorry, almost impossible to read.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2018, 12:10:44 PM by horst5 »

Offline C. Gockel

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2018, 12:02:48 PM »
I didn't take the poll. I think the cover needs work. I can't tell what is the title and what is the author's name and I can't read whatever is at the top very well at all.

Contrary to popular wisdom here you don't need the perfect cover to sell well (though it helps a lot.) But I do think legibility is probably the most important aspect of a cover, even above pegging it to the proper genre.


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Offline locker17

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2018, 12:19:42 PM »
I see too much text everywhere and mis-matched fonts. Needs de-cluttering, and make some of the text smaller. All this is an opinion, I'm not an expert.

I don't know much about the conventions for each genre so I didn't take the poll.

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Offline MartaT

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2018, 12:31:22 PM »
I picked urban fantasy. As I understand it, 'urban' fantasy doesn't necessarily mean cities, but refers to fantasy that's set in our world - am I right on that?
Of the options, I was leaning toward urban fantasy, but my take is urban fantasy should be at least partly set in a city. There's nothing in the cover that suggests that setting, and there was no paranormal option, suggested by the eyes and two animals often associated with paranormal stories.

I agree with other posters about the fonts.

Offline Kathryn Jankowski

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #18 on: March 13, 2018, 01:40:15 PM »
I would peg this as Urban Fantasy.

My initial response is that it's nearly impossible to make out the author's name and the title. So if I were browsing Amazon, I'd pass in favor of easier-to-decipher covers. Sorry.

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Offline VirginiaMcClain

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2018, 02:12:42 PM »
Thank you to everyone who has taken the poll and/or commented. All of this is valuable feedback. I'm off to make the title more legible and do something to it to make sure no one thinks it's the author name. As for genre, my 3am brain failed to include Paranormal Romance in the list, but that's not incorrect (it's an Urban Fantasy Parody that includes lots of PNR tropes as well, so either of those genres is an accurate impression). So, I am reassured that my concern about the title being difficult to read is well founded, and that the genre is actually fairly on point. (Bonus points to whoever said they thought it looked like a comedy--it is!--but it also has its own serious elements.)

Anyway, as I said earlier, this is an early draft, so changes are afoot, but everyone's feedback has been enormously helpful, and off I go to fix the things that multiple folks have mentioned. I'll post an update when I've got it, but if anyone else feels like chiming in, or taking the poll in the meantime, it's much appreciated! (And I will add paranormal romance so that folks can change their answers to that too.)
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Offline VirginiaMcClain

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #20 on: March 13, 2018, 04:10:24 PM »
Ok, folks! Here is the next attempt, making use of a various bits of feedback received here. The title should be vastly more legible (although yes, her heads still blocks part of Marmot, this doesn't bother me as I think her head is a more important element for the cover, but let me know if it really bothers you--only one person mentioned it last time). Meanwhile, I added a colon after Marmot (it was supposed to be there originally but the font I was using before didn't have colons in its symbols--hence the font change), and I changed the font on the series title because someone said it looked too cluttered before. I'm not sure if that was an improvement or not, so please let me know what you think of it.

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Offline DCRWrites

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #21 on: March 13, 2018, 04:49:15 PM »
It's more legible, though I am one who the head-block bothers. My biggest issue is that it's all words, I want more uncluttered picture on a title. The other thing (which may be because it's an early version) is that the girl, wolf, and panther all look like disparate elements laid on top of the same background rather than a whole. Part of it is that I've seen that wolf image before so that may be throwing me off.

It's just too busy, and the mix of styles hurts it too.

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Offline MelanieCellier

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #22 on: March 13, 2018, 05:17:59 PM »
Sorry, but I agree that the head blocking the words is an issue. And I am also in the too cluttered camp in general. I am not sure what is going on in the sky with the stars, etc that made a bunch of us think sci fi at the beginning, but it is even harder to discern in the new version and I think is contributing to the cluttered feeling.

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Offline Crystal_

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #23 on: March 13, 2018, 05:21:58 PM »
I thought UF until I saw the animals, then I thought PNR. But it doesn't look quite like either.

Offline Ryan W. Mueller

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Re: Testing to see if this cover hits the mark
« Reply #24 on: March 13, 2018, 05:35:00 PM »
I'd go with young adult urban fantasy, maybe with some science fiction elements.

For paranormal romance, I'd expect less clothing

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