Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sales by design...

I admit. When it comes to books I do sometimes...well, judge a book by its cover. All it takes is a certain je ne sais quoi - a deliciously embossed font, a velvety soft watermark, an intoxicating graphic - for me to get sucked in by its beauty and end up at the cash register.
Have you noticed that book covers seem to change randomly depending on where you pick them up? That's because different designs are chosen for the American and British markets and sometimes we in Australia end up with both options.
I found this comparison of UK and American book covers at a pretty cool online literary magazine - www.themillions.com. Check out the debate and see which ones you rate. It's a big deal when you consider that in sales terms, all the blood, sweat and tears an author invests in his or her manuscript can be slaughtered by a bad cover.
The UK version of Margaret Atwood's The Year of the Flood gets my vote. I have no idea if the story's any good, but who cares - with its ripe colours and heavily laden vines enswirling the words - I'd buy it solely for the luscious artwork. Ka-ching!

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