So, I’m going to try and avoid turning the blog into an ad-stream, and won’t be posting my release information directly to this place. If you really want to be told about new releases as they happen, either sign up for Amazon notifications, or send me an email at email@example.com and I’ll be starting a mailing list once I get a few people.
Now, on to the meat of the post:
It’s nowhere near the first time that I’ve mentioned that my sales have exceeded my wildest dreams. I’m honestly new to the whole writing thing (up to about 7-8 weeks, honestly) but people have taken to my stuff pretty well, and I’m always enough of an analyst to try and figure out why.
Then, of course, I realize that there’s no way I’ll ever know WHY people like what I write, and I’ll instead try and analyze WHAT I’ve been writing, to at least know what it is that people like (for reasons unkennable).
So the topic for today’s ramble will be covers:
When I was first starting out, I spent a lot of time debating, with myself and a couple other authors who were helping me out, on the topic of covers. I took a look at the covers that were available on the many books on amazon, smashwords, and elsewhere, and found that they had a few things in common.
1) Almost every cover has a picture of some scantily clad female, who was mind-blowingly hot, often sweaty, and frequently has her mouth open and is sucking on her finger or showing her tongue
2) Almost every cover has said female in front of a scene, like a kitchen etc.
Now, it would probably not be THAT hard to have done the same, but taking a look at the stock photography, there was only so much available, and I was worried I might not have enough options without repeating pictures others had used.
But then I realized something. At the time, my books were things like the first Proteus, Essence, and Deepening desires. None of these stories features a female lead who’ll walk into any room and start licking her lips, or sucking on her finger. Nothing I’ve ever written since features women like that either. It’s not my style to write stories about hot temptresses.
Instead, I thought about the kind of girls and stories I write. Most of the girls in my stories wear “normal” ish clothes (although I will admit I have more private school girls than normal, but meh). Also, most of the girls are supposed to BE normal.
Then it hit me. Rather than putting some ultra-hot glamazon on the title of my books, why not put pictures of girls who are like the girls in my stories. They’re cute, pretty, sometimes a little hot if they put some effort into it. The girls in my stories flirt, smile, and often act sweet, because I write softer stories.
Also, there’s millions of stock photos of pretty girls who are looking at the camera with just a little flirty smile. It’s pretty much stock photo girl 101.
I want the girls on the covers of my books to be the kind of girls that could be sitting next to the reader as they’re reading. My stories are about things like controlling a coworker, so why not have the cover girl be somebody who could be the reader’s coworker. Or the reader’s classmate. Or the reader’s friend.
And that’s where I got my cover style from. I wanted something recognizable, so I started putting simple color backgrounds behind the girl I’d chosen to look like the character in the story. Now, when I log in to amazon and look at a book and see recommendations, I can immediately recognize my own books, because while everybody else has a kitchen, or a bathroom, or something else as the background, I have a bright, colorful indicator. I’ve even gone so far as to try and keep the same colors in the same series, although that’s getting harder, so I might have to start to re-use.
Ok, this has gotten a bit longer than anticipated, but I think it covers my point.
Until next time