I Signed with a Publisher: the Details

Okay, everyone. The contract has been signed by both parties and I’m free to make as many announcements as I want! I signed with Etopia Press! My book should come out sometime in August or September. It will be in e-book format first, with the print book to be released no later than three months after the e-book.

As I’m sure you’ve already realized, I decided to go with a small press. I actually feel very confident about the decision for several reasons. One, this particular small press has a strong name, with a good sales record. I talked to several of their authors and they are all very happy. Two, they have an award-winning cover art department. Three, they have a reputation for having excellent editors. Four, they were willing to make changes to the contract to make me happy. And five, they expressed interest in publishing the entire series that I have planned.

I also talked with one of the agents I am friendly with, and she urged me to take the offer. She said not only would it be a publishing credit, which might help me land an agent for my next book, but I would also gain experience working with an editor and publishing company, which could prove to be invaluable.

So, all in all, I think I made the right decision! In fact, I couldn’t be more excited! Etopia is already setting me up to do publicity interviews, as well as getting me started on edits. And you already know I’ve been working on the art and marketing forms. I think I’ve got my short blurb just about done. Now it’s on to the long blurb!

I would like a little advice from you guys though… One of the questions on the art form asks if there is anything I specifically DON’T want on my cover. This is a YA fantasy (an epic fantasy) and I am toying with the idea of saying I don’t want any of the characters on the cover, or at least any of their faces. What do you think? Do you like to have a character depicted on the cover of the book you’re reading? Or would you rather have it left to your imagination?

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14 thoughts on “I Signed with a Publisher: the Details

  1. Most YA fantasy I’ve read lately don’t have pictures of faces on the covers. I think I would stick with the mystery of the story instead of characterizations.

  2. Absolutely fantastic news, you must be thrilled that things are moving forward with your book. As the last commenter pointed out, I think leaving it as a mystery sounds good, rather than characters (but then I am no expert on these things and haven’t read any YA fantasy).
    Good luck

  3. Congrats! I like characters on covers, but a lot of times they can look cheesy. It all depends on the artist/intended appearance. So if you want to be on the safe side, maybe excluding them is a good idea.

  4. Congratulations!

    With regards to covers, I have a strong preference for NOT having images of characters on the covers.

    Of course the most important thing in a cover is for it to communicate genre and appeal to potential readers.

    Working in the YA section of the library, I’ve found that books that don’t put a boy or girl on the cover appeal more to both genders. I’m thinking of books like Legend by Marie Lu, Divergent by Veronica Roth, and of course The Hunger Games. I’ve had trouble getting guys interested in Anna Dressed in Blood (which I think has a gorgeous cover) even though its opening tag line should appeal to male readers: Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead. Guys think the cover is girly. Even with books like If I Stay by Gayle Foreman, I much prefer the hardback cover with the white limb on blue background than the paperback one with the image of the girl on it. It might have more to do with my taste than anything.

  5. I think that’s a good request. I typically don’t like full faces on book covers, but I don’t mind partials profiles. For fantasy, there’s a lot of room for symbolic representations and that can be much more powerful. 🙂

  6. First of all, congratulations!

    As for your question, I can’t speak to the YA genre specifically, but the last time I was in a bookstore browsing in the sci-fi/fantasy aisle, I was amazed at how many books had nearly identical covers: a youngish woman showing varying degrees of cleavage and striking a bold-yet-sassy pose. Rather sad, really.

    Generally, I don’t mind if a book cover shows a character or not, but I agree with the sentiment that if the artist isn’t up to snuff, the characters can look really silly. Were I in your position, I think I’d be more concerned that the artist’s interpretation would match MY mental picture of my protagonist.

    Best of luck with your decision!

  7. I’m so excited for you! Congratulations! I agree with keeping faces off the cover. I love the cover for The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, though, which showed characters without the faces.

  8. Everything sounds like it’s coming together for you. That is so exciting! As for the cover art, I agree with those who suggest a bit of mystery as far as the characters go. As much as I love the cover art on my 1st book, there is a face on there that doesn’t really fit any of the characters I had in my story. While I don’t think it was meant to be the face of any one particular character, it does detract a bit from my character’s love interest, if the reader thinks that the face represents that person in the story. My point is, it might be best not to imply any characters on your cover. Leave their identity a mystery until the reader makes up their own mind as to what they look like. 🙂

  9. Woo- HOO! I had dropped out of blog land, so I’m a little late. My favorite covers right now are the NEW Diana Gabaldon covers. A bold color, clear text, and a symbol that relates either to the plot OR to the structure of her writing. I.E. one book had a caltrop on it not b/c the weapon was used in the book, but b/c it mirrored the structure of the plot: three storylines that branched out from a central tie-in. (her books are WAY complex, that she was able to find a simple symbol like that is amazing.) Her older covers were fairly cheesy.

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