A weekly column by digital book marketer, Caoimhe O’Brien.

This week we made some exciting progress when we received the final proofs for the new covers for The Irish Trilogy.

Orna is delighted with the new covers and we both think they are a significant upgrade on the old versions.

The old covers felt slightly outdated and they didn’t reflect the strong storylines in The Irish Trilogy. So, a few weeks ago, Orna and I made the call to have them redesigned.

Having looked at other covers on the market in the historical fiction genre we decided on some key points:

  • The covers should have a more modern feel to them
  • They should emphasize the setting of Ireland
  • They should reflect the subject matter (a historical murder mystery of love, revenge and redemption) while remaining commercial and appealing to readers. Authors who have invested so much time and energy into their novel often try to have the cover spell out the storyline, but the cover should entice a reader rather than tell them the plot
  • Orna really liked the idea of a shadowed face to the side of each cover. We initially thought that two shadowed faces per cover would look good but when we got the proofs back, we decided that a single face on each cover looked best. This worked out well as there are three contemporary characters whose progression is traced through the novels
  • Commercial appeal – this cannot be repeated enough!

The results!

    

We’re so happy with the covers. They reveal elements of the story while remaining commercially viable and they look great side-by-side. The letters and the old photographs reflect the historical elements of the trilogy and the setting is a much more important part of the design now.

Readers like a cover to clearly demonstrate a genre. Think of the cover as like a contract between you and the reader. Readers don’t appreciate being promised something by the cover and the content not delivering.

The best covers sit well in their genre and let the reader know what they are getting but are well-designed and are special enough that they stand out from the crowd.

The old covers are below so you can see the improvement for yourself.

    

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