I sent Caroline, my editor at Bloomsbury, a bunch of inspiration images for this cover (one is below). You know, girl, sailboat, sun, water... okay, so I was kind of vague.
When they came back to me, it was with this first draft (right). And it DID capture the girl, sailboat, big sky stuff. But the boat? It wasn't right. So here's how I responded:
Thanks so much for sending along this design! I do like the echoing heart from SINNERS and the general feeling of being out on the water, glimmering sun, and mood of the girl. I have a couple of things I'd like to mention though:
1. That boat is a Catamaran, totally different from what Clem's family is on. I think because the boat is such a big part of the story, it matters.
2. The pink feels a little like it veers over the cheese line. Maybe it's the pink with the heart, maybe it's the pink and purple of my name... it just feels a bit like it's trying too hard somehow to shout "Love Story!" Maybe there's a way to get a similar tone in there with a natural element, like a sunset?
And Bloomsbury was great, really took my concerns to heart. Everyone really loved the girl (myself included) so at first they tried to adjust the boat so it would look more like Clem's... but that just made it look less like a real boat. So they went in a totally different direction...
Read the rest of my Cover Story at melissacwalker.com!