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spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 04:17 AM
Have you ever read books that had well-written, awesome stories, but the covers were just so HORRIBLE?

Some random person tweeted me with a link.

New Concepts Publishing (http://www.newconceptspublishing.com/)

It's a publishing company for romance novels, I think. But... the covers... are so BAD.

I need an eyewash. Click at the link at your own peril. I'm sure the stories are good, but... the covers...

Pagey's_Girl
06-03-2009, 05:01 AM
Hmmm. I usually read horror, SF and dark fantasy stuff, but some of those look - well, interestingly spicy. I agree about some of those covers, though... :eek:

I have a 1990-ish edition of a Stephen Donaldson anthology called Daughter of Regals with a cover illustration of the lead character of the title story - who's not supposed to be at all attractive physically - drawn looking eerily like me without the curly perm. (She is, however, one of the coolest, kick-butt female characters ever, so it's not all bad.)

BigWords
06-03-2009, 05:02 AM
I got as far as Windwarrior before I started making up my own plots for the covers and the titles of the books. Please don't make me elaborate on what I came up with for that particular book... *shudders*

Pagey's_Girl
06-03-2009, 05:03 AM
I got as far as Windwarrior before I started making up my own plots for the covers and the titles of the books. Please don't make me elaborate on what I came up with for that particular book... *shudders*

*Cues up Spinal Tap's "Break Like The Wind."*

BigWords
06-03-2009, 05:06 AM
C'mon, hands up. Whose actually bought one of those books?

Don't be shy, I'm not going to mock.

Matera the Mad
06-03-2009, 06:05 AM
Hum...they give me two reasons to ignore them. That's nice.

Mumut
06-03-2009, 08:01 AM
This shows how important good cover art is. Zeus discussed the covers of my books well in advance and asked for approval of the finished work. Lachesis asked for my ideas and asked me to send the photos I told them about. They said they'd use one of them in the general way I outlined but didn't show me proofs. The end result was very good though. I'm very lucky.

Sweetleaf
06-03-2009, 08:34 AM
I used to buy bundles of books at a second hand store - 5 for $5, things like that. Some of them looked like they'd be awful but were actually pretty good.
Others were... well...

BigWords
06-03-2009, 01:27 PM
Some of them looked like they'd be awful but were actually pretty good.

I forced myself to go back and actually click on the titles. The writing isn't bad, but would anyone buy them with those covers? They look so... Urgghhh. I feel like I need a bath after going back to the site.

But saying all that, I wouldn't write them off completely. I wouldn't buy from them, but if they are on the lookout for twisted, freaky romances I have a little something that is NOT going to be seen anywhere under my real name. Maybe I'll send them a sample... :D

Pepper
06-03-2009, 02:38 PM
So that's where the photoshop graphic dunces get work....... :D

Covers are very important to me. Yes, I judge a book by its cover. :Ssh: So you see, the answer to your question would have to be "no". I've never read a good book with a terrible cover because I don't read books with terrible covers, period. ;) I draw the conclusion that if the publishing company didn't pay for at least a slightly skilled graphic artist, then perhaps they deemed the manuscript wasn't worth the extra money?

Highly flawed reasoning, I know, but that's what I fly with. :)

Button
06-03-2009, 06:21 PM
I don't read books with bad covers. I am a totally biased reader that judges books by covers alone. If it ain't pretty, I ain't readin'.

James81
06-03-2009, 07:05 PM
It's a romance novel. Nobody is expecting it to be any good or the cover to be pristine. lol

It's essentially porn for women.

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 07:11 PM
I don't read books with bad covers. I am a totally biased reader that judges books by covers alone. If it ain't pretty, I ain't readin'.

You're like me.

Like I said, I bet some of these books are good, but... who did they hire to do the cover art? AGHHHHH!!!!

I think I'm going to make up stories about them. And post them on my blog. :D

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 07:13 PM
Mating Urge (http://www.newconceptspublishing.com/matingurge.htm)

The writing for this one isn't that bad.

But the cover, for example. I really want to make up a story about it. And it involves a half naked man who builds fires under his torso. i mean, that thing looks like a little flame, no?

vrabinec
06-03-2009, 07:17 PM
Hmm, I think one of those is my old frat brother, Darren.

http://i601.photobucket.com/albums/tt95/LunaticPen/album1/fpasek0-R4-E519.jpg

Kitty Pryde
06-03-2009, 07:32 PM
My personal favorite good book with an awful cover is this one:

http://www.xs4all.nl/~rnuninga/NovCol/lpic/mou-3.jpg

I had to make a paper book cover for that one so I could carry it around in public! The original cover is actually kinda neat, but this one...bring me the brain bleach!

Pagey's_Girl
06-03-2009, 07:42 PM
A lot of old SF paperbacks are like that - great stories, putrid covers. Of course, with some of those old mass-market paperbacks, you're lucky if the cover stays attached long enough for you to finish the book.

aadams73
06-03-2009, 07:49 PM
It's a romance novel. Nobody is expecting it to be any good or the cover to be pristine. lol

It's essentially porn for women.

No, porn is porn for women. We're well aware of the difference. Keep drinking that soy milk and you'll see.

Meanwhile, I love these: Longmire does Romance Novels (http://worldoflongmire.com/features/romance_novels/).

vrabinec
06-03-2009, 08:08 PM
My personal favorite good book with an awful cover is this one:

http://www.xs4all.nl/~rnuninga/NovCol/lpic/mou-3.jpg

I had to make a paper book cover for that one so I could carry it around in public! The original cover is actually kinda neat, but this one...bring me the brain bleach!

What's wrong with that one? Nice hooters on the slutty owl there.

Pagey's_Girl
06-03-2009, 08:09 PM
No, porn is porn for women. We're well aware of the difference. Keep drinking that soy milk and you'll see.

Meanwhile, I love these: Longmire does Romance Novels (http://worldoflongmire.com/features/romance_novels/).

Romance novels are the very embodiment of the phrase "can't judge a book by its cover." A friend enlightened me to the fact that there can indeed be some really good stuff lurking under the cheesiest of covers. (And I'm a sucker for mysterious manor houses, windswept moors and brooding lords of the manor with dark secrets....)

Button
06-03-2009, 08:22 PM
Romance novels are the very embodiment of the phrase "can't judge a book by its cover." A friend enlightened me to the fact that there can indeed be some really good stuff lurking under the cheesiest of covers. (And I'm a sucker for mysterious manor houses, windswept moors and brooding lords of the manor with dark secrets....)

I have a thing for old, creepy houses, so these are usually a winner. Unless they put a ghost in a window, as in... bedsheet with eyeholes ghost...

aadams73
06-03-2009, 08:31 PM
I have a thing for old, creepy houses, so these are usually a winner. Unless they put a ghost in a window, as in... bedsheet with eyeholes ghost...

What if the brooding lord of the manor's deep dark secret is that he likes to dress as a ghost and flash people riding up the driveway?

Don't mind me--I need more coffee.

BigWords
06-03-2009, 08:42 PM
What if the brooding lord of the manor's deep dark secret is that he likes to dress as a ghost and flash people riding up the driveway?

Don't give them ideas:


Spirit Of Desire by Rampant Thrusting

A mysterious old mansion holds a secret which will change a young student's life forever. Her hormones raging, she...

Button
06-03-2009, 09:50 PM
Her hormones raging, she...

lustily lusted after the sexy hearthrob. Together, they must save the universe, overcome evilness, and make mini-quiches before time runs out!

You can't leave an opening like that. That's just a lead.

icerose
06-03-2009, 09:59 PM
This reminds me of when I was about 11 years old, somewhere in there, the library was getting rid of some of their duplicates/more worn books. I picked up on and it had a pretty tame cover, not back cover though so I couldn't read the synopsis. I bought like 5 books for .50 cents or something like that.

Took them home. Got to the one with the tame looking cover with no back synopsis and :eek: it was a bodice ripper! I was too young for this! They should warn people about that kind of stuff, and looking back now it was a really bad bodice ripper.

"His hard aching man probe reached for her soft petals of flesh."

Yeah. I haven't been able to read a strictly romance book since. I'm sure there are plenty of really good ones out there, but I was traumatized at too young of an age to reconcile. :D

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 10:09 PM
Oh dear... Hard aching man probe??

I love Longmire does romance novels!!!

Soccer Mom
06-03-2009, 10:20 PM
My husband reads John Ringo. He's not allowed to laugh at my romance covers.

Haggis
06-03-2009, 10:57 PM
It's a romance novel. Nobody is expecting it to be any good or the cover to be pristine. lol

It's essentially porn for women.

James, do you carefully pick and choose the people you insult, or is it a random thing? You know, we have members here who write what you are so casually dismissing.

TabithaTodd
06-03-2009, 11:02 PM
Well...most of those book covers (imo) suck. However, the one called carnal appetite isn't too bad and summoner could use a little work.

I'm more a horror cover type of gal myself and romance covers have never really made the grade with me...they're all cliched and cheesy to me...just a preference though.

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 11:06 PM
A lot of the covers look like they're video game style. Computer generated.

vrabinec
06-03-2009, 11:10 PM
Oh dear... Hard aching man probe??

I love Longmire does romance novels!!!

Hi throbbing cromagnon salami statue...

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 11:17 PM
Hi throbbing cromagnon salami statue...

His loins burned with passion...

aadams73
06-03-2009, 11:22 PM
He probed her proby thing with his probing tool. Tenderly.

vrabinec
06-03-2009, 11:24 PM
His loins burned with passion...

It was big, so big, thirty pounds of dangling fury, and she didn't know if she could take it all, but she wanted to, oh she wanted to...

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 11:24 PM
His manly manhood quivered.

aadams73
06-03-2009, 11:27 PM
It was big, so big, thirty pounds of dangling fury, and she didn't know if she could take it all, but she wanted to, oh she wanted to...

Thirty pounds???

*Mind boggles*

That's not a proby thing, it's a...a... Well, it's not a proby thing. That's all I'm saying.

aadams73
06-03-2009, 11:28 PM
Her womanly petals were all dewy, like a bulldog eating custard.

vrabinec
06-03-2009, 11:30 PM
Yeah, that's kinda more like a tumor, isn't it?

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 11:34 PM
Thirty pounds???

*Mind boggles*

That's not a proby thing, it's a...a... Well, it's not a proby thing. That's all I'm saying.

It's more like something quivering and large. Like.. yeah, like a tumor.

This is what happens when you take too many enlargement pills for your manhood.

vrabinec
06-03-2009, 11:36 PM
It's more like something quivering and large. Like.. yeah, like a tumor.

This is what happens when you take too many enlargement pills for your manhood.

This actually happened to a friend of mine. In addition to that bnormal size, he grew an additional...appendage from his forehead. It's where the "peckerhead" moniker first was used...

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 11:38 PM
Sue the spammers!

aadams73
06-03-2009, 11:41 PM
And then there's the pirate romance:

Aye, he spread her silken thighs and licked her like she was a stamp. Aye, me parrot concurs. Arr!

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 11:47 PM
My mind is poisoned....

TabithaTodd
06-03-2009, 11:48 PM
Peter Pecker picked a peck of pickled pu...

*brows raise* Uhmmm never mind...lol

spamwarrior
06-03-2009, 11:50 PM
I can't even think of a cool comeback to that...

vrabinec
06-03-2009, 11:52 PM
Peter Pecker picked a peck of pickled pu...



...puckered poppies?

Soccer Mom
06-04-2009, 03:00 AM
Oh my. Should we port this to erotic forum?

BigWords
06-04-2009, 03:35 AM
Just want to point out why I have never bought a romantic fiction novel, and the reason you will not find me in the romantic or erotic sections of the SYW board:

Every time I read a line like 'burning loins' or 'red-hot member' I immediately think of urinary tract infections, STD's, or any damn thing except what the author intended for the scene. I can't help it. My brain isn't wired for that kind of writing.

No problems with people who like those types of descriptions - the more varied the community, the better the advice which gets dished out. It's just not in my nature to go to the happy place, and every time I try and read something like the ugly paperbacks which started this thread, the images in my mind are... Disturbing.

STD's ain't sexy.

Pagey's_Girl
06-04-2009, 03:50 AM
What if the brooding lord of the manor's deep dark secret is that he likes to dress as a ghost and flash people riding up the driveway?

Don't mind me--I need more coffee.

:roll:

That really sounds like something I'd write. But I have a really warped sense of humor.

ETA - I had an interesting discussion/argument with a friend about precisely what terms were and weren't acceptable when discussing male anatomy within the context of a sex scene. Apparently accurate scientific labeling, like I was doing, is not acceptable....

Pepper
06-04-2009, 04:31 AM
My personal favorite good book with an awful cover is this one:

http://www.xs4all.nl/~rnuninga/NovCol/lpic/mou-3.jpg

I had to make a paper book cover for that one so I could carry it around in public! The original cover is actually kinda neat, but this one...bring me the brain bleach!

Lol! I'd put my money on either Boris Vallejo or his wife, Julie Bell as having illustrated that cover. Check out their website- they've got HUNDREDS of awesome pictures just like this one. :D :D What makes this cover even more difficult to stomach is the fact that those two artists live well off their art. :P

Ol' Fashioned Girl
06-04-2009, 04:32 AM
I... uh... well...

Let's cool those tools (see how that ties in?) and be more mindful of who might be insulted by what we say here, eh? We not only have writers of this genre on board, we have readers of it as well. We don't want to insult each other - and we certainly don't want to alienate a customer.

spamwarrior
06-04-2009, 06:58 AM
Lol! I'd put my money on either Boris Vallejo or his wife, Julie Bell as having illustrated that cover. Check out their website- they've got HUNDREDS of awesome pictures just like this one. :D :D What makes this cover even more difficult to stomach is the fact that those two artists live well off their art. :P

Everyone in the paintings look like they have really really awful tans.

spamwarrior
06-04-2009, 07:00 AM
Oh my. Should we port this to erotic forum?

No! No! I'm too young to go there!

Nothing against romance novel readers/writers... I like myself a good romance novel myself :D especially in bed.

icerose
06-04-2009, 07:02 AM
Oh my. Should we port this to erotic forum?

Uhoh, did I start something naughty? :Ssh:

BigWords
06-04-2009, 01:38 PM
What makes this cover even more difficult to stomach is the fact that those two artists live well off their art.

It just so happens that I like Vallejo. And Richard Corben. I even had a Sorayama poster on my wall back in my student days. Nothing wrong with OTT art, even if the anatomy is considered "wrong".

At least it isn't as bad as the awful photographs which were on the covers of so many British books back in the seventies and eighties. Go hunt down the Just William cover with the photograph (from the TV series I think?) and you'll see what I mean.

jodiodi
06-04-2009, 02:19 PM
As a reader and writer of "Surging tides of raging passion and tumultuous waves of ectstasy" (c) I find the covers of 'ripped bodices', female's head thrown back, male's shirt open (or shirtless) as he is apparently about to bite her throat, comforting. I know what I'm getting when I read these books and always thought of them as good beach books or rainy days on the porch in the swing books. They're escapist and I'm good with that.

Horror is to be read in a secluded place, preferably at night, with only one light.

Mystery/Thriller novels are best enjoyed on a long flight and at airports waiting at the gate area or at a hotel during the evenings of a business trip.

Just the way I've always been. YMMV

BigWords
06-04-2009, 02:33 PM
...And some books are written with the sole purpose of being read in a private place where you won't get arrested for "enjoying" them. :D

Button
06-04-2009, 03:55 PM
:roll:

That really sounds like something I'd write. But I have a really warped sense of humor.

ETA - I had an interesting discussion/argument with a friend about precisely what terms were and weren't acceptable when discussing male anatomy within the context of a sex scene. Apparently accurate scientific labeling, like I was doing, is not acceptable....

I don't like the more scientific terms, but I do like the slang variations that are more direct than "loins".

Loins would be more appropriate for historical romance type novels, maybe. Anything modern, and it better be what a girl is willing to say out loud, which is a lot these days.

vrabinec
06-04-2009, 04:49 PM
Anything modern, and it better be what a girl is willing to say out loud, which is a lot these days.

A couple weeks ago, it was real late, and I stumbled into the bedroom with rum on my breath and accdently woke the wife up when I stubbed my toe and cussed up a storm. Since she was up, I figured, why not? So I started peeling off my pajams. She looked down there and said, "Put that junk away."

brainstorm77
06-04-2009, 04:58 PM
I've yet to have my bodice ripped.....

BigWords
06-04-2009, 05:29 PM
I've yet to have my bodice ripped.....

The women I stalk never wear bodices... errr... *whistles innocently*

icerose
06-04-2009, 05:35 PM
As a reader and writer of "Surging tides of raging passion and tumultuous waves of ectstasy" (c) I find the covers of 'ripped bodices', female's head thrown back, male's shirt open (or shirtless) as he is apparently about to bite her throat, comforting. I know what I'm getting when I read these books and always thought of them as good beach books or rainy days on the porch in the swing books. They're escapist and I'm good with that.

Exactly, it spells it out right on the cover. The one I got was a beautiful woman, completely clothed not even showing cleavage riding on a horse in front of a manor. That was it. I had absolutely no idea what I was getting into.

vrabinec
06-04-2009, 06:00 PM
I've yet to have my bodice ripped.....

Me too. But I have been ripped off by a woman in a bodice.

Button
06-04-2009, 06:16 PM
I've yet to have my bodice ripped.....

That's a shame... 'cause it's a whole lot of frikin' fun.

BigWords
06-04-2009, 06:22 PM
I must be hanging around in the wrong places. Where are all the women in bodices? Do they run away when they see me?

vrabinec
06-04-2009, 06:48 PM
I must be hanging around in the wrong places. Where are all the women in bodices? Do they run away when they see me?

Technically, a bodice is just the top of a dress, isn't it? I don't think it necessarily has to be a corsett.

BigWords
06-04-2009, 07:11 PM
Why am I picturing white underwear which is tied up the front with string?

I must stop watching BBC drama on Sunday evenings... I must stop watching BBC drama on Sunday evenings... I must stop watching BBC drama on Sunday evenings...

Button
06-04-2009, 07:15 PM
Bodice isn't a word that really isn't used any more, no since corsets have been worn. I'd assume either to be about the same thing, and technically, a corset is a bodice, since it's the top part.

Either way, the ripping of the particular garment is still something that should happen at least once in a lifetime.

Pagey's_Girl
06-04-2009, 08:18 PM
"Bodice" is still used in sewing - usually in terms of a dress front that's embellished somehow - beaded or ruffled of embroidered or the like. Think fancy prom dress.

aadams73
06-04-2009, 08:21 PM
Either way, the ripping of the particular garment is still something that should happen at least once in a lifetime.

I'm still waiting, damn it. I guess tearing it myself doesn't count, right?

MelodyO
06-04-2009, 08:38 PM
I'm still waiting, damn it. I guess tearing it myself doesn't count, right?

LOL! If my husband ever ripped my bodice, instead of swooning in a rapture of passion, I'd be all, "You ripped my DRESS! WTH!?! Do you know how much I paid for this thing???"

Why yes, I have been married for 18 years. Why do you ask?

BigWords
06-04-2009, 09:02 PM
*opening Ann Summers catalogue, just to make sure I'm thinking of the right item*

spamwarrior
06-04-2009, 09:08 PM
LOL! If my husband ever ripped my bodice, instead of swooning in a rapture of passion, I'd be all, "You ripped my DRESS! WTH!?! Do you know how much I paid for this thing???"

Why yes, I have been married for 18 years. Why do you ask?

HAHAHAHA I know! When I read stuff like that (and I do) I always go, "OH MY GOSH!!! What have you done? You just ripped up that expensive dress!"

But the roaring waves of love and passion have no boundaries.

spamwarrior
06-04-2009, 09:11 PM
Exactly, it spells it out right on the cover. The one I got was a beautiful woman, completely clothed not even showing cleavage riding on a horse in front of a manor. That was it. I had absolutely no idea what I was getting into.

Have you ever been on the "Smart B!tches, Trashy Romance Novels (http://www.smartbitchestrashybooks.com/)" site? I love that site. In one of their sections (I think it was the cover snark section, they sometimes put old and new versions of covers. Some of the old covers were all with some girl making an O face, head thrown back, shirtless guy going for the kill. The new covers...

Well, they were very good "Little house on the prairie" covers. You never would have guessed they were bodice rippers.

icerose
06-04-2009, 09:33 PM
LOL! If my husband ever ripped my bodice, instead of swooning in a rapture of passion, I'd be all, "You ripped my DRESS! WTH!?! Do you know how much I paid for this thing???"

Why yes, I have been married for 18 years. Why do you ask?

When my husband is in that much of a playful mood then he just finds one of my old already holey shirts and happily destroys it with no complaints from me.

We found our comprimise. :D (Going on 9 years here.)

brainstorm77
06-05-2009, 01:43 AM
Wonders what a tear away dress would work like if velcro was used??? mmmmmmm....

Pagey's_Girl
06-05-2009, 01:52 AM
Wonders what a tear away dress would work like if velcro was used??? mmmmmmm....

Now I have that ZZ Top song "Velcro Fly" in my head. :roll:

spamwarrior
06-05-2009, 02:42 AM
Wonders what a tear away dress would work like if velcro was used??? mmmmmmm....

Reusable bodice ripper dresses? I'm up for it!

brainstorm77
06-05-2009, 02:53 AM
;):snoopy::tongue

spamwarrior
06-05-2009, 02:56 AM
Mass-produced, as well. 10 bucks a pop.

Kitty Pryde
06-05-2009, 07:37 PM
Lol! I'd put my money on either Boris Vallejo or his wife, Julie Bell as having illustrated that cover. Check out their website- they've got HUNDREDS of awesome pictures just like this one. :D :D What makes this cover even more difficult to stomach is the fact that those two artists live well off their art. :P

Nothing at all wrong with their art! It's all fine by me, and they've inspired loads of fantasy writers and other artists too. It's just that there are so many things wrong with this cover! First, fantasy novels already have kind of a taint of the immature to many people (the book is really science fiction, not that you could tell by the naked harpy...). Then, you've got a dude in a speedo--why? why are there speedos in fantasy-land? are they churning out fantasy spandex at the fantasy textile factory? (also this dude came from earth wearing old-man clothes. again, why is he now in a speedo?) Third, I am okay with a topless lady on a book cover, and I am okay with a hideous gray harpy, but I AM NOT AT ALL OKAY WITH A HIDEOUS TOPLESS GRAY HARPY GRIMACING HORRIBLY. It all just culminates in a wretched melange of wrongitude.

Pagey's_Girl
06-05-2009, 07:53 PM
Reusable bodice ripper dresses? I'm up for it!

*Goes to fetch her mind from all the naughty places it went with that one*

spamwarrior
06-05-2009, 08:31 PM
Third, I am okay with a topless lady on a book cover, and I am okay with a hideous gray harpy, but I AM NOT AT ALL OKAY WITH A HIDEOUS TOPLESS GRAY HARPY GRIMACING HORRIBLY. It all just culminates in a wretched melange of wrongitude.

LOL!!!