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Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!



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  #1  
Old July 17th, 2012, 5:15 am
BmasterofdeathB  Female.gif BmasterofdeathB is offline
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Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

I was thinking about what the cover of my book would look like...I'd like it to be an object instead of a real person, or even just a drawing of a person in general, like the (always amazing) Harry Potter books. For example, the covers of the Twilight Saga books are of an apple, a flower, a ribbon, and a chess board. What is the meaning behind these objects? And what kind of object should I use? Should it be something important to the main character, or something with true meaning? The main character in my story suffers depression and is on her way to happieness...is there a certain object that represents this?


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Old July 19th, 2012, 7:49 pm
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

Look at the covers of books that sell well in your genre to see what kind of images they are using.

You can also look on DeviantArt and search for keywords that you think pertain to the theme of your book. You might find inspiration there, too.


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Old July 20th, 2012, 1:22 am
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

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The main character in my story suffers depression and is on her way to happieness...is there a certain object that represents this?
A black dog is a symbol of despression. But unless you're self-publishing, the publisher's art department will have the biggest say in what the cover design is.


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Old July 20th, 2012, 2:14 am
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

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Originally Posted by BmasterofdeathB View Post
I was thinking about what the cover of my book would look like...I'd like it to be an object instead of a real person, or even just a drawing of a person in general, like the (always amazing) Harry Potter books. For example, the covers of the Twilight Saga books are of an apple, a flower, a ribbon, and a chess board. What is the meaning behind these objects?
I'll give my two-cent interpretation but I agree with Wab that unless you self-publish you probably wouldn't have a whole lot of say in the cover art.

Twilight: The apple- to me the apple is the forbidden fruit and this is the book where Bella is sort of partaking in the forbidden fruit or succumbing to temptations so it's kind of related to a theme of the book.

New Moon: the flower- to me the flower is suggestive of courtship (give the girl you fancy a flower) and though it's not really indicative of Edward since he vanishes for most of the book it is somewhat indicative of Jacob appearing to court Bella. At the same time, though, the flower arranged so that it looks like it is wilting a little which can be somewhat representative of Bella's wilted and depressed emotional state all through the book.

Eclipse: The ribbon- this is the hardest one. To me ribbons represent innocence since little girls tend to be most associated with innocence (they wear them in their hair). While this isn't really the book where Bella loses her innocence (if you know what I mean) it is the book that is the final chapter of her youth - the next book is all about her getting married, gettin' frisky and having babies. In addition, the ribbon is red and looks like a river of blood which can suggest the bloodiness of the way Victoria builds up her army; she does it by "spilling the blood" of those she turns into vampires. A bit of a stretch but it's a possible interpretation.

Breaking Dawn: the Chess Board- this is pretty clear. The pieces on the chess board are the Cullens et al versus the Volturi and their various strategies and moves as they try to thwart each other and achieve their ends.

All of the images in some why relate to a theme of the book. If you're interested in doing your own cover art or want to have a say in the process I'd say think about the theme of your book and objects that somehow represent that theme (such as the ribbon being symbolic of innocence but it's used on the cover of the book where Bella's era of innocence comes to and end) At the same time, Graphic design is difficult and if you're having problems coming up with ideas that might be a sign that outside assistance (from a friend or a professional in the design world) could be warranted.


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Old July 20th, 2012, 5:53 am
BmasterofdeathB  Female.gif BmasterofdeathB is offline
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

thank you all, this has helped a lot!


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Old September 24th, 2012, 9:17 pm
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

If your book deals with depression, than it should have a dark colored cover (like black and blue colors). Since she is on her way to happiness maybe you could show a girl going down a tunnel with a light at the end; that could be interesting.
Or you could base the cover on a scene that happened in the book if it was a very significant scene. Some covers don't even have illustrations but the title is written in calligraphy-type letters so you could do that too.
If it were me, I would base my cover on a location in my story (for ex. if there was a lighthouse in my story and it played a significant role, than that could be my cover).


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Old September 25th, 2012, 1:18 am
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

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Originally Posted by asdfasdf17 View Post
If your book deals with depression, than it should have a dark colored cover (like black and blue colors). Since she is on her way to happiness maybe you could show a girl going down a tunnel with a light at the end; that could be interesting.
Or you could base the cover on a scene that happened in the book if it was a very significant scene. Some covers don't even have illustrations but the title is written in calligraphy-type letters so you could do that too.
If it were me, I would base my cover on a location in my story (for ex. if there was a lighthouse in my story and it played a significant role, than that could be my cover).
A lighthouse on the cover, e.g., doesn't tell a potential reader anything about the book. First, you have to suggest genre. Is it suspense? Does it center around a creepy old lighthouse? Is it romance? Is the lighthouse the place where the lovers met? Is it fantasy? Is the lighthouse a portal?

Your cover is the all-important first step in drawing the reader toward the blurb. I belong to a group where we critique books that don't sell. In the vast majority of cases, there's a problem with the cover, and the biggest problem is it's too literal, i.e., a scene from the book that means something to the author but not a thing to a reader.

Next hurdle. The Blurb <shudder>


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Old September 25th, 2012, 4:50 pm
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

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Originally Posted by Desraelda View Post
A lighthouse on the cover, e.g., doesn't tell a potential reader anything about the book. First, you have to suggest genre. Is it suspense? Does it center around a creepy old lighthouse? Is it romance? Is the lighthouse the place where the lovers met? Is it fantasy? Is the lighthouse a portal?

Your cover is the all-important first step in drawing the reader toward the blurb. I belong to a group where we critique books that don't sell. In the vast majority of cases, there's a problem with the cover, and the biggest problem is it's too literal, i.e., a scene from the book that means something to the author but not a thing to a reader.

Next hurdle. The Blurb <shudder>
Oh that's interesting! I should have been more specific, like if it was a scary story than it would look all dark and spooky. But I know what you mean, the cover is the most important thing. Everyone judges the book by it's cover!


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Old September 25th, 2012, 6:35 pm
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

Which is not entirely true. To celebrate 75 years Penguin Australia released a series of 75 reprints in the original white and orange bands. It was such an ongoing success that what was supposed to be a one-off in 2010 has expanded to 200 titles. (That they only cost $9.95 helps.)

http://www.popularpenguins.com.au/de...fm?page=topten


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Old September 25th, 2012, 9:07 pm
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Re: Meanings of Objects on Book Covers. HELP!!

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Originally Posted by Wab View Post
Which is not entirely true. To celebrate 75 years Penguin Australia released a series of 75 reprints in the original white and orange bands. It was such an ongoing success that what was supposed to be a one-off in 2010 has expanded to 200 titles. (That they only cost $9.95 helps.)

http://www.popularpenguins.com.au/de...fm?page=topten
Interesting. Dull, but excellent branding. Of course, there is also the original cover of The Girl With the Drago Tattoo. There are always exceptions to every rule.


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