Blog

Here It Is! The Cover of my Debut Book!


This is the official cover of my first book, The Preacher’s Bride! What do you think?! ?!

The first time I saw it, I was absolutely thrilled. More than anything I was overwhelmed to see my name, right there, on the front of a book—MY book.

In the last post, I shared in detail how the Bethany House Creative Team designed the cover. If you missed it, click here. I’ll summarize by saying this: A LOT of work went into it!

And no, I’m not taking up Amish fiction. My heroine is wearing a bonnet because she’s a young English Puritan woman, not because she’s Amish. However, I’ve been told “bonnet books” are selling well, so if someone is drawn to mine because they think it’s Amish—hey, I won’t complain!

The talented graphic designer who developed the cover took care with every single detail. The loose hairs and turned up edge of the collar show the inattention the heroine pays to her outward appearance. The tilt of her head shows her modesty as well as her uncertainty. The paper she’s hiding behind her back plays an integral role in the plot.

You may be wondering, like I did, why my cover is ready so far in advance. Even though the official release isn’t until October 1, the Bethany House sales department is already busy at work. They had a meeting last week and are gearing up to begin selling the fall books to their distributors.

The sales team will present my book as one of four historical romances that Bethany House will release at the beginning of October. They can sell my debut book to distributors much better if it’s paired with other authors with established readerships.

Thus the cover, an excerpt of my book, and information about me as the author—it’s all necessary this far ahead as part of the beginning process of getting my book into stores. But it also means my cover is “out there” now in cyberland too—available for everyone to see. Believe it or not, it's already on Amazon for pre-order.

At first, I had a few doubts. If my book cover is out so far in advance, won't it be "old" or anticlimactic when the book actually releases? Will some people see the cover and assume the book is already released? And what about doing interviews this far in advance--will that help or hurt?

I posed these questions to the head of Marketing and the summary of her wise response was this: It won't hurt anything to start some "chatter" or "buzz" now, but it's more important do the promotion closer to the release of the book.

I’m curious to know what you think about publicizing a book cover months in advance of the actual release. Do you think it can help build anticipation? Or do you think it detracts from the glory of the actual release itself?

98 comments:

  1. Jody, I think publicizing your book or any book this far in advance can't do anything but help. People won't forget. And they will look forward to the release date. They will want to get to know you and how you came to write this particular book.

    I loved hearing about everything that's involved. I am so happy for you. I can't wait. I plan on pre-ordering The Preachers Bride.

    Thanks for helping me with my dream and I realize it's closer than I think. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I got to babbling and forgot to mention how lovely the cover is. AWESOME Jody.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Isn't a thrill to see the cover for the first time?

    Yours is beautiful! Ilove it!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Jody!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Your cover is soooo pretty!!! I love it!!!! I am just so excited for you! I say the earlier, the better. You will be on everyone's wish list now. :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!! I know I'm already excited to read it and I love the cover!! SO thrilled for you!!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. It's beautiful! I will definitely be buying the book once it comes out.

    :-)

    ReplyDelete
  7. wow, Jody! It's beautiful. :-) This makes things so real too! Woohoo!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Congratulations! How exciting to see your name on the cover. Continued wishes for your success.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I just wanted to mention that your book is also on Amazon.ca, so it will be released in Canada in the fall as well...

    ReplyDelete
  10. That is BEAUTIFUL!!!! Oh Jody, this made my heart get all fuzzy and warm and even a little achy! I would LOVE to see my books with a cover! How amazing to see your vision brought to life by professionals who believe in your stories! Well done, my friend! Well done!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I think it will help. The more build up and anticipation, the more sales I think. I mean, I've already headed over to amazon to put your book on my wishlist. I'm sure I'm not the only one. There's something about anticipation that just gets people excited. :)

    Of course, if you start early, I think the key would be to keep it going so that no one forgets about it between now and then. Not overdoing it, but reminders. You know what I mean?

    ReplyDelete
  12. it looks fantastic! how totally exciting!

    Personally I think like your marketing person. Start the buzz now. Get your name out there, people anticipating. But save your biggest marketing schemes for right around the release!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Simple but beautiful. I love it! :O)

    ReplyDelete
  14. So, so, so, so, so gorgeous! :-) Love it, Jody.

    ReplyDelete
  15. All I know is that I can't wait to read this book. Of course I've been excited as a result of following your blog, but the cover is a hit and now I'm looking forward to reading it even more. Congratulations Jody!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Jody, it's a fabulous cover!
    Congrats! And I think it's great that it will be out there well in advance to promote your book. People will know what to look for and see at first glance, that it's yours!

    I'm soooooo very happy for you!

    ReplyDelete
  17. "More than anything I was overwhelmed to see my name, right there, on the front of a book—MY book." Oh, my, Jody!!! I'm overwhelmed to see your name on the front of that book. My friend has her own cover!!! I can't tell you how excited and thrilled I am for you!

    I don't think you can start too early to publicize the release of your book! The more buzz you create the better. You've called yourself an "unknown" many times, and you are doing such a great job to change that. Now, it's time to get that cover out there and make it known. Get those pre-orders going. I, for one, cannot wait to pre-order and receive your book. I can't wait to read it! It's going to be awesome!

    ReplyDelete
  18. That's gorgeous! Congratulations! You must be thrilled :D

    ReplyDelete
  19. Looks great, Jody! Love seeing the product after you've written about it for a while.

    ReplyDelete
  20. The cover is beautiful! They did an awesome job! Congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Jody,
    This cover is absolutely beautiful - such a marketing tool in itself.
    YES, get that cover out there and market that book. What a selling point. It will build up enthusiasm for the book itself.
    Barb

    my blog -
    www.barbwhitti.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  22. Wow, oh, wow, oh, wow. I love your cover. Love the colors and the picture. You can tell it's a historical about a good girl who's got some kind of secret.

    Congrats.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Beautiful, beautiful!! There's YOUR name! Right on the cover! I love the colors and the design. It's amazing. Can you believe you'll be holding this in your hands in just a few months?? AAAHHH!!!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Jody, I hope you know how sincere I am when I say that I LOVE YOUR COVER. It's so lovely, so ladylike. The colors are delicate and the woman is intrguing.

    More than the image, I am just plain happy for you. My Christian sister has her name on the front of a book! What a feeling! I'm so thankful that you share these moments with us.

    Personally, I love seeing book covers in advance. They stay in my mind and make me want the book even more.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Absolutely gorgeous! And it's going to look even better when it's sitting on my bookshelf ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  26. Oh, looks beautiful, Jody! So excited for you!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Ooooo, it's gorgeous! I'd totally read it (of course I was going to read it anyway, but still).

    I love to see covers before the book comes out. It gets me excited about the release.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Jody, it's just beautiful ... You must be so proud! Wishing you the very best for its success :)

    ReplyDelete
  29. Wa-hoo! Double, triple Wa-HOO! It's a beautiful cover and it must be so amazing to see your name on that byline. How cool to hold your dreams in your hands :)

    ReplyDelete
  30. That's a gorgeous cover! I think it really fits the genre.

    I doubt that having the cover and a little promo out early is going to hurt anything--I'd bet most readers will never even see it until it's in the bookstore. But it builds anticipation for the rest of us!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Jody, this is a really awesome looking cover. The details you noted are what make this over-the-top. Oh, and your new picture on the blog is awesome too. You're all professional looking, very much the epitome of a published author.

    To your question, I don't think there is anything at all wrong with putting the image out there early. It builds anticipation (as long as it's not a year out) for the book, which hopefully will mean more sales. I know I'm looking forward to your book coming out, just so I can pick it up.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Jody,
    It's beautiful! What a thrill!

    I can't imagine early exposure would ever be bad. Looks like your work is being cared for in every way.

    I'm so excited for you.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Jody, the cover is not only beautiful, in is intriguing. It is like a painting. You want to know what is going on behind that lovely face. I am so very happy for you. I remember when I saw my book cover for the first time with my name on it. There is no thrill like it. Enjoy every single moment!
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  34. Jody, I'm thinking somewhere between an Impressionist and Realist painting. Your cover sparks emotions.

    How wonderful!!!! Congratulations!

    Since it is so stunning, why NOT get it out there?
    Patti

    ReplyDelete
  35. Congratulations!!! It is BEAUTIFUL :) :) I'm so, so happy for you!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Oh i love it!! So beautiful!

    I'm glad you got the cover done early, and got to share it with us! To me, seeing teh cover makes everything seem real.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Ah.... VERY nice. You must be so pleased! Just had to say that. Now I'll read your post!

    ReplyDelete
  38. "And no, I’m not taking up Amish fiction. My heroine is wearing a bonnet because she’s a young English Puritan woman, not because she’s Amish."

    Whew. I just about had a heart attack when I saw this cover. My first thought, Omigosh, have I ever said anything bad about Amish fiction to Jody??!! Um. Okay. Maybe God is reminding me to just keep my snarkiness to myself. But hey, your cover looks great. Very puritanical.
    Congrats again!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Congratulations.

    I agree with the idea of putting the cover out there, if it's the kind of cover (like this one) which tells a bit of the story. It's like a movie poster or movie trailer which is released about 6 months before the movie arrives.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Chills!! Beautiful cover. I can't wait to read it!

    ReplyDelete
  41. Oh, I love it! You must be SO excited!!

    ReplyDelete
  42. Congrats, it's beautiful! So excited for you. Can't wait to read it. Thanks so much for sharing all of this.
    Blessings,
    Karen

    ReplyDelete
  43. With you and the way you handle things, it will only help build anticipation.

    You know, your MC looks a little like me if I must say so. :D

    Congratulations, it's beautiful and lookey there--your name all big like that!
    ~ Wendy

    ReplyDelete
  44. Great cover! I like the aging look of it. Very nice. :)

    ReplyDelete
  45. It's BEAUTIFUL, Jody!! I'm THRILLED for you!! There is NOTHING like loving your cover. (I'm 2 for 4 with mine.)

    That's funny about people looking for Amish books and picking yours up. BRILLIANT.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Jody,
    This is beautiful! I LOVE it! I know you have to be super excited and proud. Thank you for the insight into the book cover process. I have always been nervous about the idea of someone else projecting my book's content in illustration. I've seen some awful book covers out there and my prayer is that I won't be stuck with one of those! You most certainly did NOT!

    Congratulations!
    Jen

    ReplyDelete
  47. Beautiful Jody! Your name looks even lovelier in print!

    Praise Jesus hun- we are rejoicing with you. I'm hurrying over to Amazon! Do you know if it will be available in Kindle edition? (I hope so).

    I don't think it will hurt at all coming out early, it builds anticipation.

    ReplyDelete
  48. OCTOBER FIRST! I can't wait until October 1st!! That's terrible. My fingernails will be all bitten off by then and I'll have to start on my toenails which is just frankly disgusting ... sheesh.
    *Jaime's heaves massive sigh and takes a long drag of lukewarm coffee, spitting it out on her computer keyboard and wondering how far away October 1st really is"

    ReplyDelete
  49. Ooooh! It's BEAUTIFUL, Jody! Bet you're going to frame that and hang it over your desk, right? I'm SO excited for you!

    I think it's absolutely beneficial to have the photo released early. It kick-starts the whole marketing process and builds anticipation.

    "I can't wait to get my signed copy," she squealed.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Jody, think of it as inspiration to the rest of us who want to see our names on a book cover. So, yes. Put it out early.

    ReplyDelete
  51. That's very beautiful! And so wonderful that they captured so much of her character with the cover!

    Buzz is never a bad thing, no matter how early!

    ReplyDelete
  52. Is.it.GORGEOUS! Jody, it really is. I'm drawn to the colors, and yes, that bonnet. I'd absolutely pick it up, just by cover alone.

    I think sharing (in most cases) can only help.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Jody, I've been dying to see your cover. It's wonderful!!!

    I love how the turned up collar looks like it's blowing in the wind and then the swirlly font on either side of the title further gives the impression of a breeze blowing around her. Winds of change?

    Congratulations! I'm so pleased for you!

    ReplyDelete
  54. It's beautiful! Congratulations.

    ReplyDelete
  55. It truly is a beautiful cover... I love the soft colours (and the landscape) and the gentle nuances of the lovely woman's pose. Even if I weren't specifically looking for it I'd pick it up. It's awesome to see your familiar name on it, too. I'm so thrilled for you!

    Six months seems like a long time to wait, but knowing how quickly time passes October will be here sooner than you think. By doing what you've just done, you'll keep a buzz going without overdoing it and as the months slip away we're just going to get more excited along with you.

    ReplyDelete
  56. Congratulations on your beautiful cover, Jody! Bethany House did a wonderful job. Love the colors, model, fonts, and the way it looks like a painting. I'm already intrigued by what's in that letter/paper she's holding. My favorite part of all, though, is seeing YOUR name on the front in such nice, big letters.

    For those of us eager to support you in the best way we can, I have a question. How do we help your stats the most? By placing a pre-order or by waiting to order on your official release day?

    ReplyDelete
  57. I love it! It's gorgeous! I think it can help build anticipation for sure. I think it's a good thing. :)

    ReplyDelete
  58. Well, I know that seeing the cover of your book makes ME more anxious to read it. I don't know how it works from a marketing standpoint, but I'm excited!

    And let me know when you're ready to start accepting interview requests. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  59. ACK!!!! You have a book cover!!! Enjoy this moment, the next book cover will probably not feel as intensely amazing. I'm so thrilled to see your name on the cover. YAY YOU!!!!!

    And what does that note say that she's holding????? I guess I'll have to wait till fall to find out. Cannot wait to read your book.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Beautiful, beautiful cover, Jody. Congratulations! :-)

    I think having it out there early can only help - and your marketing department can kind of have some idea of early sales by tracking how many people pre-order or put it on a wish list. Not to mention that *you* can use it for promotion all over the 'net, and unlike saying "my book is coming out", you have graphical proof that it really does exist. That will make a difference to some people.

    I do hope you'll keep me in mind for your blog tour... ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  61. The cover is gorgeous! Love the artwork and colors. :) Congrats!

    ReplyDelete
  62. AHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Beautiful! Perfect! Congratulations!!!

    ReplyDelete
  63. Nothing like a wonderful bookcover with YOUR NAME on it to show you how you are answering God's call and using the gifts HE gave you. What a beautiful, proud and spiritual moment for you!

    As for the timeline - people seeing your book can never be a bad thing. It's not like people will not read it because they saw it a few months ago and think they already read it. I mean, that's the goal right - for people to read it?

    ReplyDelete
  64. I love it. I pick it up and look at it. The textures on the bonnet and the dress are yummy.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Love the cover! I get to reveal my soon too! It's so exciting to see what publishers come up with! I LOVE mine! Here's to best sellers for both of us!

    xoxo -- Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  66. FREAKING AWESOME!!!!!! Congrats, it's truly magnificent. ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  67. I almost forget- you have something at my blog!

    ReplyDelete
  68. Congratulations! It looks great!

    ReplyDelete
  69. Lovely cover! Congrats to you!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  70. Beautiful cover, Jody. Congratulations.

    I think getting it out there in advance plants the visual seed in potential readers minds. The more they see it, the more they remember it. Then, when it is actually launched and they see it in stores, they will be drawn to it out of familiarity and hopefully, curiosity.

    ReplyDelete
  71. The cover is marvelous. My first thought was Puritan. I think having the cover out before the book will start to entice people when couple with an excerpt. People love visuals.

    ReplyDelete
  72. LOVELY cover, Jody! And HOW EXCITING it must be to see YOUR NAME on it! Thanks so much for sharing. Congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
  73. Great cover, Jody!! I'm not sure about when the best time it is to publicize a book but you've motivated me to learn about that. Thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
  74. Wow it looks beautiful. Congrats :o) and how exciting!!

    ReplyDelete
  75. Hi Jody -

    Great cover! I believe the more buzz about your book now the better. Title and name recognition will have readers primed and ready when the book debuts.

    I can't wait to get my copy. :)

    Blessings,
    Susan

    ReplyDelete
  76. Gorgeous cover! Congratulations:)
    I can't wait to read it!!!

    ReplyDelete
  77. Jody
    OK, so my comment's been said already about 80 times! But the cover is fantastic...and I know how exciting it was to see it for the first time...I'm smiling now as I'm sure you were when you saw it! Of course push that book whenever you get the chance...and give God the glory. It's fun. Will you have copies ahead of the release date to sell like I did? Or must you (we) wait til the actual date? Barb

    ReplyDelete
  78. Congratulations! It's a beautiful cover.

    ReplyDelete
  79. I love the cover. How exciting for you. There is nothing like seeing a cover with your name on it. Congrats!

    ReplyDelete
  80. Oh Jody, that is awesome! I love the cover!
    My daughter and I are so looking forward to your book coming out! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  81. Now that is a cover that makes me want to buy the book! Wonderful image, congratulations Jody.

    ReplyDelete
  82. Love it. There's just something about it that pulls you in.

    ReplyDelete
  83. Jodi, I can not wait to ready your book! the cover is just overwhelmingly amazing! When God works things out doesn't he do it far better than we ever could imagine! God Bless You!

    ReplyDelete
  84. What an awesome looking cover! I'll have to get a copy of your book when it's out. It sounds like it's going to be a great read!

    ReplyDelete
  85. Jody, that is SO GREAT. The note behind her back is the most intriguing. And, are you surrounded by blog love today! Wow! We're all so excited for you.

    ReplyDelete
  86. Jody: I weep in joy for you this minute. God will use this book, and your life. May this only be the beginning.

    Love you and proud of you,
    Jen
    Audience of ONE

    ReplyDelete
  87. It looks like I'm a little late to the party, but monster-sized hugs and rooftop congratulations! I am so thrilled for you, Jody. You have earned every second of this celebration moment. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  88. Love the cover!! How very exciting to see it and your name on the front:)

    ReplyDelete
  89. It's gorgeous, Jody! Many congrats!!!

    ReplyDelete
  90. They do this with movies, promote months in advance, and it just frustrates me. But most like it and anticipate the movie release. Because advertising becomes more powerful with each time the viewer sees it, getting the word out early is good. Your publisher probably knows what they're doing.

    ReplyDelete
  91. Honestly, I think a book cover can sell a book. I can't tell you how many times I've been drawn to a book because of it's cover. The paper behind her back would certainly intrigue me if I was glancing at the shelves in front of me. It's a great cover Jody!

    ReplyDelete
  92. I love the cover! It honestly is one that would make me pick up the book.

    ReplyDelete
  93. I love this cover, and can hardly wait to buy and read the book!

    ReplyDelete
  94. It's beautiful! I will definitely be buying the book once it comes out.
    work at home in india

    ReplyDelete

© All the articles in this blog are copyrighted and may not be used without prior written consent from the author. You may quote without permission if you give proper credit and links. Thank you!