I’m taking a little time out of my NaNoWriMo word crunch (I’m only slightly behind the eight ball now) to toss up a quick post about The Desolate‘s recent cover change. I noticed over the following few months after The Desolate‘s release that the stock photo I’d chosen for the cover was a pretty popular image. Too popular, in fact. I saw at least two other books with the same image on their covers. When I received a piece of promotional email using the same image I knew that I needed to change my cover. I needed something that would differentiate my book, not confuse my book with others’.
I went on the hunt at Dreamstime.com and found five images I thought might work. I mocked up covers and sent them to former beta readers and some friends whose opinions I trust. They unanimously chose the image I also thought was best, so I worked up the cover and pushed new files up to Amazon.
The Old Cover:
The New Cover:
At first I was a little disappointed about dropping the old cover. I like the image, so much so that I chose it well before the book was completed. But once I found the new image and the beta feedback rolled in, I realized that the new cover more accurately represented the book. Folks who’d read the story were seriously creeped out by the image of rickety stairs leading into a black basement abyss, mostly because they were able to relate the cover directly to the story (any more would be a spoiler). I retained some of the elements of the original cover (mainly the jagged typewriter font), but the new cover is raw, dirty, frightening. It looks less like a ghost story and more like a horror story.
In the end I think this is the cover I should have chosen all along. I love it. Hopefully it inspires the same feeling in potential readers that it does in me.