Thursday, January 10, 2013

Choosing a Book Cover

I need your help in deciding a book cover for Seefer Elliot. I have spent a few weeks putting together some very different looks. I am too close to the project to make a decision on what is the best cover for appealing to young readers. Just a quick summary so you know the context: Seefer battles other-worldly beings aided by the power of some really cool devises and a yet-to-be discovered ability of his own. My target audience is middle-schoolers interested in sci-fi and adventure novels.


I took a picture of my son (who was thrilled to participate) and superimposed it in the reflection of an astronaut-looking bad guy. The quality isn't there, yes, but it can be improved. The question is, should it be improved? Is this style the best?


Hey, I recognize that silhouette. I just took the same picture, drowned away the details with some color and stylized the cover in general.


This is my favorite. There is a scene in the book that shakes down like the image on this cover. I love pictograms, but do they convey the right message for selling a sci-fi adventure to young adults?


My son makes another appearance. This time he gets a pretty fierce glow and looks like he is ready to kick some butt. The only caveat to this (and to #2) is that Seefer is kind of a loser. I don't want to make him out to be too badass on the cover.


This was my hand at illustrating. If this is the way to go, I need to know it now so I can finish the drawing. I quit this effort mid-way because I felt it was too cartoony. The drawing is of the same pivotal scene shown in pictogram form on cover #3. I have yet to illustrate the battle on the ground. But should I even bother? Aren't cartoon covers meant for 4th grade and below?

I appreciate your input and any comments you can make would be truly helpful in wrapping up this first book! Basically it comes down to: which of these 5 books would you buy if you saw them sitting on a shelf?

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