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  • Writer's pictureToby

What's in a cover?

That old saying is absolutely not true. I'm not sure it ever was. You can judge a book by its cover. I think most readers do nowadays (at least the ones buying physical copies). The cover conveys a theme and a feeling. Its the first thing we experience of a story before we even look at a page. So that's why creating the new cover for Soaked (out in February from Cornerstone Press) is giving me a lot of trepidation. I've been emailing with my publisher and we have some ideas floating about. This is really difficult. How do you put a face to a creation? With my kids I just needed to collaborate on a name. Their face will be their own. With a book I will have to pick an un-evolving image.

The literal part of me wants a cover that features lots of water - like the Louisiana of the future I am picturing. The artistic side of me wants something with a map, outlining what a coast might look like after several glaciers melt and the land sinks more. Philosophical thoughts lead me to some sort of blurred picture which conveys how the future is uncertain. Maybe it should focus on a picture that is representative of one of Soaked''s nine stories. Or maybe it should just be a single color. What would the color of a future following climate change look like in Louisiana?

What are covers of books that drew you in? Are there covers you still think about years later? Is there a cover that perfectly depicted the story within? Leave me a comment. If you can add a picture of it I'll love you even more!

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Hi, Toby,

I think all your ideas are great. That's part of the problem with choosing, isn't it?

I love this rather simple cover. of Olga Zilberbourg's Like Water and Other Stories, yet it looks as if it has raised elements as well.

The cover of Alex Branson's Water, Wasted is also great and actually does contain a raised element.

Good luck,


Jun 13
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These are great! Thank you sharing. Definitely gets the juices flowing…

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