Poll: Choose a Cover Design

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Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

KittenEV

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Almost done editing the final manuscript so I thought I'd start working on the cover since I'm self-publishing. These are what I came up so far. What do you guys think? Which is your favorite?

8NJxaZC

Very short story: A young woman (22 years old) has her heart ripped out. Now she must find out who the heart thief is so she can retrieve her heart.

Cover #1

8NJxaZC.jpg
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Cover #2

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Cover #3

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Cover #4

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be frank

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I find #3 the most eye-catching, but I'm not a fan of the font used for the author's name, and its positioning looks too low on the page.

Speaking of, the positioning of the heart in #3 makes it look more like the book should be called "Stomach-less." (Or "Gutless", maybe? :D) That ain't where the heart is, last time I checked.
 

Bufty

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None of them really catch my eye or hold my attention. I'm having to work too hard to get whatever the message is. Everything is too busy for me and I don't find the red on black, or the fonts, easy to read.

Does the title and picture really convey anything about the story? Or are you aiming for an unnecessarily complicated play on words and a fancy illustration?

Have you considered alternative titles from the aspect of the thief or act of theft perhaps. Maybe a simpler illustration of a hand clutching or reaching for a heart?

Good luck- I'm sure it must be a time-consuming exercise.

ETA- I'm no artist - just giving my reaction.
 
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Chris P

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Number 3 is is the best of the four, but it looks like a lot of other covers out there. That could be good in that you are in line with industry practice, but bad in that there's nothing unique. However, number 1 is hard for me to read, and although 2 and 4 are unique and not so hard on my eyes as number 1, they don't really wow me either.

Covers are TOUGH! I suggested a cover for my novel, and the publisher did what I wanted, but it was a disaster. I don't envy you having to design your covers.
 

gmwhitley

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I like Cover #3 the best - can the heart be higher - it seems a little low - and agree with comments above about red on black text being hard to read - the title doesn't really jump out.
 

Lavern08

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I like Cover #3 the best - can the heart be higher - it seems a little low - and agree with comments above about red on black text being hard to read - the title doesn't really jump out.
Yeah, that ^
 

Cyia

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In thumbnail, any of these are going to be illegible. They're nearly illegible at full size. Red on black, especially in a narrow-lined font, is a tricky combination.
 

Jeff Bond

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I like #1, though would also suggest tweaking typography for clarity. #3 is intriguing but makes me think vampire/horror. (Which is great, if that's what your story is.)
 

KittenEV

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Round #2

#1 (Different font and font color, zoomed in image)

9lkX9H8
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#2 (Different colored font, added red smoke)

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#3 (Not black and white, different font color) (not sure if this is too plain)

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#4 (For funsies cuz of a suggestion) (reminds me too much of zombies though)

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Brightdreamer

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Number 3. IMHO, it matches the title, with a creepy, somewhat surreal vibe.

Second would be Number 1; the art has an abstract, dark appeal to it. If it's supposed to be an actual figure or image, though, you've lost me. I just find the shapes intriguing, like blood spilled in the darkness.

Font of the title's a bit hard to read in 4, and 2 just isn't really doing anything for me.

(Given the gruesome story concept, I almost wonder what something like 4 would look like with a more realistic human heart...)
 

Bufty

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Why choose such a complicated font for the title? I don't find it at all easy to read. If I didn't already know what the title was, I could well not have a clue from a quick glance at the cover.
 

paxkan

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I like the graphic for #1 the most, personally, although #3 is pretty good too. I'm not a huge fan of the font, though. It works better for 3 than 1, but it could be difficult to read as a thumbnail.
 

veinglory

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Number three is getting there, but you need to pull the text back further from the edge.
 

kevinwaynewilliams

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The heart-shaped hole is gimmicky and will ruin nearly anything you put on top of it. I think the white font on black/red can be made eye-catching, and while the font you are using in 1-3 approaches the right one, it's excessively fancy. I'd take 2, pull the heart shadow, simplify the font, and use that as a base. Or hire a professional, if you can afford it.
 

Jeff Bond

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I'll stick with #1 in round 2 ... but I share kevinwaynewilliams concern about the heart hole being gimmicky. I might distress the heart a bit more than it already is to mitigate that.
 

KittenEV

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I'm back again. I know you guys are probably getting tired of looking at these. Sorries! I only have 2 to show you this time around though. I would love to pay a professional to do this, but I just don't have that kind of money.

I know that the heart may look a bit gimmicky so I did try to do the heart operation scar as well, but I don't know, it just didn't seem like it drew enough attention to it.

I tried to distress the heart, but none of it looked good so I couldn't do that unfortunately. I did change the font to something more readable hopefully.

Sorry about the lack of anti-aliasing. The export just didn't want to give me a clean export.


Cover #1 (Whenever I look at this one I just get the feeling that something is missing. I just can't seem to figure out what though)

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Cover #2 (This is brand new and I'm really digging it. I looked over some covers in the genre so hopefully it helped.) This just seems more dynamic to me.

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RayMcDuffy

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The new #2 is great! Interesting.

#1 ain't bad, but I'd be less inclined to pick it off a shelf.
 

Southpaw

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#2 for me too and I agree it's looking more inline with the genre. There is something proportional wrong with the image in #1 (and it disturbs me :tongue)
 

JetFueledCar

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I actually love the new #2. Since you're self-publishing, though, realize it has to be just as clear in a thumbnail, and even in B&W, because people will be deciding whether to try it based on the cover they see on their e-reader. Shrink it down, turn the saturation down to zero, and make sure it still works. If not, see what you can do with it--maybe brighten the red so it stands out when it goes grey, or make the font bolder. If you can make this image work in thumbnail, I think it's a winner.

ETA: Forgot to mention, re: the heart scar, if you wanted to go that route I would look at brightening the actual scar and fading the rest to greyscale, that kind of thing, to draw attention to it. (I don't do covers normally, but I do some occasional image editing. Take my suggestions with a grain of salt.)
 
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bin_b0x

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I actually liked #3 best in black and white. The absence of colour in tandem with the 'heartless' theme made me shiver a little.

I think it'd make a fantastic cover.
 

A large christmas tree with lights outdoors in the snow, with a snowman, houses, and children