With the re packaging and re release of my first novel, Entrusted, I’ve spent weeks researching images and learning cover design. I’m not quite ready to reveal the covers for my Surrendering Time series (formerly the Adirondack Surrender Romance,) but I noticed a couple things.
- I am now looking at movie posters, traffic signs, restaurant menus and basically anything with pictures and text through the eyes of what I’m learning. I can spot a bad photoshopped head thrown on a body or if fonts are too clunky. It’s almost like a Sci-Fi movie. I’m in so deep with what I’ve seen while training that I can’t go back when it comes to looking at things.
- Covers are changing, at least with romances. I’ve always depended on a cover to show me the characters. As a reader, I enjoy looking to see how accurate my imagination is to what is on the cover. That’s not always the case these days.
Here is what I’m noticing with romance covers:
- One character is displayed instead of two. Sometimes the character isn’t even visible. They are far off so you can’t see facial features, or, their back is turned to the reader.
- If both the hero and heroine are visible, it’s not their full body. The placement is such that heads aren’t there, or, heads are turned. You might notice the man has stubble and dark hair, but you don’t see the eyes.
I’ve read that this is the new trend to allow readers to use their imaginations. When characters are displayed, it takes away the “romance” of wondering what they look like. Each reader has a different concept of what the character should look like, so those kind of covers work.
I confess, I’d rather see the characters up close, features visible. That said, I do have people on my covers, and I’m curious if the hundreds and hundreds of pictures I’ve looked at match what readers have pictured in their minds. In my research I read that the cover doesn’t have to be 100% accurate when it comes to details, but interesting and close enough to get them to want to know more.
So, how about you? What kind of cover do you like? Characters on covers? Characters far off? Facing the reader? Not facing the reader? Not on the cover at all? I’d love to hear what you think.