This week brought us a brand new Sarah Dessen novel (yay!), and Sarah was kind enough to share her cover story on my blog last month. Of course I had to show it here too. Take it away, Sarah!
"I knew I wanted my cover to reflect at least one of the major themes of the book: either something involving the night, or bicycles. Maybe even both. Most of all, though, I wanted it to look as summer-esque as possible. Like the kind of book I'd want to take to the beach with me.
"My editor and I discussed a few options. We liked the idea of a diner, or some kind of cafe, at night. The fabulous art designer at Penguin read the manuscript so she had a few ideas as well. The title was in flux at the same time, though, so after we decided on Along for the Ride, we decided to go for the bike thing. It just fit better.
"This was actually the very first time we had a photo shoot specifically for one of my covers. We just couldn't find a shot with a bike that everyone liked. Also I think since some of my other cover images have popped up other places Penguin wanted to be sure this one would be ours alone.
"When I saw the cover, I loved how it captured the idea of summer so perfectly. Because I am a stickler for things matching, though, I was a bit hesitant about the pink dress on a red bike. I was always taught those colors don't go well together.
"There were a LOT of phone calls and emails back and forth between myself, my editor, my agent, and the art department. Everyone had a different opinion, but we all know how important a good cover is. It is worth the stress.
"[The art department] is always really patient with me when it comes to the covers, because they know how important it is to me that the book look just right. They actually did a bunch of comps with the bike and dress different colors, and I realized that the pink on red actually looked best. They were right, it just popped. And now, I can't imagine it any other way.
"I'm really, really pleased with this cover. It just captures that feeling of summer that I was going for. And I love that pink dress. I WANT that pink dress!"
I agree with Sarah! The cover has such a summer feel, and the pink dress looks like it's organza, perfectly blowing in the ocean breeze. What do you guys think?