Cover reveal!

QQSC front coverBy Sally Carpenter

Obtaining a cover for one’s book is, to me, a signpost that the novel is close to completion. After months of seemingly endless revisions and toiling alone, it’s a thrill to finally turn in the manuscript and get feedback from other reader. The cover is my “reward” for completion. It’s also a challenge. How does one sum up a 240-page book with one page of visuals?

For my new book, “The Quirky Quiz Show Caper,” CCP publisher Patricia Rockwell already had a designer in hand so I didn’t need to find an artist. I had an idea for the cover but upon seeing the first mockups, that concept didn’t work. The design elements didn’t resemble what I had in mind, and nothing about the cover indicated “mystery.” I did, however, like the circle with the ring of lights and decided to keep that item.

Fortunately the designer was willing to make changes, so I asked to remove two of the design elements and replace them with (spoiler alert!) a dagger and a TV camera. A cover should only have one or two strong elements because when the image is shrunk for a webpage, too many pieces turn into blurs.

So in the next set of mockups, the knife looked great. However, the TV camera was a modern day digital camera. My story is set in 1993 when film and videotape were still in use! A quick replacement with a vintage camera fixed that problem.

The previous three covers in this series, all done by different designers, used musical notes or instruments, as my hero is was a famous pop star. However, on seeing the final mockup, adding notes or any other pieces would clutter the page and cover the spotlights in the background. I didn’t ask for the spotlights but I like them once I saw them. So between my ideas and what the designer added, we came up with a nifty cover.

CCP authors are given input into their covers and I appreciate that. I’ve heard authors with other publishers who complain that their covers misrepresent their story. I like the bright colors on my cover, which say “cozy” but the knife definitely says “murder!”

Now as to what a TV camera and a knife have to do with the story—you’ll have to read the book to find out!




2 thoughts on “Cover reveal!

Add yours

  1. Thank you for your description of the cover process. We at CCP are lucky to be given input on our covers. I cannot imagine having my words wrapped in a cover that does not represent my story.

    I really like the TV camera image. My son-in-law is a photojournalist and I love hearing about all that is involved in creating the shows that we just sit and watch.

    Good luck on your new book. Ours will be out soon.


  2. Hi Rita. On close inspection, the camera is highly detailed and looks just like the videotape cameras I saw when I worked at Paramount. The film cameras, of course, looked different, and according to union rules requires three people to work one camera!! Videotape cameras only have one operator and since those cameras are cheaper to use, daytime shows used them.

    Liked by 1 person

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