Debra – Can you tell at a glance?

As I’m working on finishing a cover tonight, I wonder about readers.  Do readers notice an author not just because they like the cover but because the book LOOKS like their author?  (i.e. The reader glances and thinks, “Oh!  That looks like a Susie Smith book!”  and reaches for the book or clicks on the book.)

I think we all reach for covers that “look like my kind of story” but are we as influenced by the cover look created for a particular author?

One of the authors we’re working with is long-time romance writer Virginia Brown.  While she’s doing some fabulous new mysteries in two series for us (Dixie Diva and Blue Suede Mysteries), we’re also bringing out her classic historical romances.  We want them to look like big, lovely historicals.  Classic but not dated.  We want the reader to know 1) type of story, 2) author, 3) classic at one glance.   She’s got an extensive backlist, so this will be a challenge.

How are we doing so far?  Does she have a look?  Which cover do you like best?  COMANCHE MOON and CAPTURE THE WIND are both out and WILDFLOWER (first of the To Love An Outlaw series is out later this month.


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14 Responses to Debra – Can you tell at a glance?

  1. loisgreiman says:

    Yowsa!! Deb, hot stuff. I love Capture the Wind. Will you do a cover for me please?? Oh yeah, I should probably write one first. 🙂

  2. Marcia in OK says:

    Never read or heard of this author before. And, the only cover that would lead me to expect a historical romance is the one in the middle – the one with the ship. And, not being a big historical reader, I’d probably be frustrated if I didn’t read the cover copy or an excerpt.

    Good Luck! Always fun to create new stuff.

    • debradixon says:

      Marcia- Thanks so much for wading in with an opinion! I often think that the proliferation of hot bare chested guys on contemporaries is ruining the use of hot guys on historical covers. I’m going to have to think about this more carefully!

  3. Love the middle one, Capture the Wind, but Wildflower would get my attention because of the Western atmosphere.

    • debradixon says:

      Okay the Comanche Moon cover isn’t resonating as an Indian/western historical. Hmmm…And that one, to me, really reads as an Indian (coupled with the title). This is great food for thought!

  4. You do wonderful covers, Deb, and you know I love Western historicals, so I’m there with Wildflower because that’s exactly what it looks like. I’m not so sure about Commanch Moon. I love the girl. She’s not swooning for one thing. The guy…okay, maaaaaybe the juxtaposition of her face and his, you know… And maybe it’s the proliferation of male chest covers. To me they’re all beginning to look alike, especially when it’s all chest and no face

    I love Capture the Wind. There’s just enough brawn there. He needs that shoulder to sweep me off my feet, not the man boobs. And not only is the guy handsome, but his facial expression is strong and intriguing. Draws me right in.

    And then there are the words Virginia Brown. Sold!

    • debradixon says:

      And I thought you’d be the one to see the “indian” in the hair, etc. on COMANCHE MOON. It’s so hard to find appropriate historical photos these days. Thanks for the run down of how the covers work. And I do think the bare chest covers are becoming a problem!

  5. Quilt Lady says:

    Love the covers, not sure I could pick a favorite among them. They are all wonderful!

  6. Kylie Brant says:

    I think a *look* is really sought after by designers but hard to achieve. In that you have similar font for name, title and the band across the center, yes. But would I as a reader see those things and think of this author? No because they aren’t unique to the author. I think if an author always has dreamy, gauzy impressionist type covers, for example, one might brand that type of cover to the author. But it has to be fairly unique and as soon as something unique shows up other designers copy it, which decreases the uniqueness to that individual author 😦

  7. Liz Flaherty says:

    Capture the Wind, because it “captured” me right away.

  8. michelehauf says:

    Awesome covers! I used the same guy in the middle cover on one of my books. Dude gets around. 😉

  9. gorgeous covers. impossible to choose a favorite among them!

  10. laurieg72l says:

    My favorite is Comanche Moon. It screams western for me. With the title, the nightgown style her hairstyle. It’s eye catching, beautiful, touching yet sensual. The man’s long hair, great abs, no chest hair I can see a Native American or western man tie in. Looks great to me. Definitely my favorite!

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