Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, animals both domesticated and wild, shake what your momma gave you.

I enjoy cover art be it on books, albums, movies, whatever.  And the surest way for me to buy something I'm not familiar with is to judge it by its cover.  Of course this doesn't always work out, but who cares.  If the book/album/movie sucks at least I can display the artwork on a book/album/movie shelf.

I think the folks at Subterranean Press would defend my logic because they always have fantastic cover art on their products.

Let's look at the original dust jacket for Dan Simmons's Drood.

OK, we have a shadowy figure, some fancy font type, and the author's name.  Boring.  No way I'd buy this book based on cover alone. 

Subterranean released Drood with John Picacio's cover art.  If you'll remember from previous posts I was to pray to the God of Publishing that Picacio do my cover art when the time comes.  Here's why ... 

Or what about Muse of Fire also by Simmons with cover art by Picacio.

These books I would buy without having a clue what they're about. 

Here's an example of an author whose work I'm not familiar with.  Elizabeth Bear's Seven for a Secret has an awesome cover, and I will buy this even if only to display the cover on my bookshelf.

The cover art is by Patrick Arrasmith. 

So go ahead, try to write some literary masterpiece that is  grammatically sound, stylistically intense, and brilliantly researched.  But if you really want to succeed in selling your novel, hook up with an amazing artist.  You'll at least get an idiot like me to buy your book.

Later Fiends 


I've bought many an unsatisfying horror novel from used book stores based on the cover art -- and I was never disappointed in that regard.

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