Awards,Events/News

Judging a book by its cover

TimesmithWe all do it! We’re not supposed to but we DO judge books by their covers. If we didn’t then why would publishers spend money commissioning artists and designers to create works of art to represent the book’s contents? It’s the closest books come to having film-style trailers. They’re there to intrigue you, to make you pick up the book and (hopefully) buy it.

I’m a big fan of classic movie posters of the 70s and 80s, especially the work of Drew Struzan. I love the way his work encapsulates the essence of a movie, its main characters and themes, into one bold image. Stephen Lavis‘┬ábeautiful cover paintings manage the same trick, making you want to read the book immediately. I wanted to capture something similar with the covers for my books and luckily designer James Fraser did exactly that!

You might have heard me mention about Timesmith being in competition in Mr Ripley’s Book Cover Wars this week. Well, I’m delighted to say that it won! Given the excellent competition it was up against it makes it a particularly thrilling victory! The voting went right up to the 12 midnight deadline (far too late for this sleep-loving monkey) and there were only 2 votes in it! It could so easily have gone to the excellent Terminal by┬áRoderick Gordon & Brian Williams. Praise must go to all the finalists and their books:

Alexander Gordon Smith - The Fury - Published by Farrar Straus Giroux - 23, July 2013 - Cover by Christian Fuenfhausen. Roderick Gordon & Brian Williams - Terminal - Published by Chicken House - 2, May 2013 - Cover by David Wyatt. Thomas Taylor - Dan and the Caverns of Bone - Published by A&C Black Children's - 6th June 2013 - Cover by Thomas Taylor. Ian Johnstone - The Bell Between the Worlds ( The Mirror Chronicles) - Published by HarperCollins - 6 June 2013 - Designed by Blacksheep UK.
Alexander Gordon Smith – The Fury – Published by Farrar Straus Giroux – 23, July 2013 – Cover by Christian Fuenfhausen. Roderick Gordon & Brian Williams – Terminal – Published by Chicken House – 2, May 2013 – Cover by David Wyatt. Thomas Taylor – Dan and the Caverns of Bone – Published by A&C Black Children’s – 6th June 2013 – Cover by Thomas Taylor. Ian Johnstone – The Bell Between the Worlds ( The Mirror Chronicles) – Published by HarperCollins – 6 June 2013 – Designed by Blacksheep UK.

Thanks to Mr Ripley and all the other competing covers. The end result for all of us is that we’ve been exposed to covers – and writers – that we might not have seen before, so even a beauty contest like this can be a good thing for the words hidden under the covers.

Niel

Writer & Artist based in the North East of England.

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1 Comment

  1. Grand stuff !!!!!!

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