Wednesday, October 9, 2013

In Which I Design A Book Cover

Before I tell you why this post is named the above, here's some backstory first.

When I was younger I liked drawing, and when the muse was present, I wasn't half bad. But sadly, you don't use it, you lose it, and I haven't touched a pencil in years. My 'drawing' now happens at work on scraps of paper. Embarrassingly my last doodle involved a medieval sort of man running w/a sword held over his head(and a customer saw it). But he was able to tell what it was even upside down, so I guess it wasn't too horrible... I digress. So: history of drawing. Present: Sadly out of practice.

But when I read about a certain contest over on Sara B. Larson's blog, I knew I was going to jump at the chance to participate. Design a cover for her upcoming debut, Defy, post it on your blog or submit it on Facebook, and she could pick you to win a signed ARC of Defy!

I immediately commenced to doodle some stuff. Like arms holding swords. Which looked like noodles holding lumpy sticks. Then I thought I'd go w/collage. Except everything I printed off the 'net was too big or too small. And then I thought about silhouettes. Silhouette covers are some of my absolute fav covers. When I see them my heart gets happy.

So here is the cover I designed for Sara B. Larson's Defy, due out Jan. 7th, 2014. Tah-dah!!!


And here is the blurb, lifted off of Goodreads:

Alexa Hollen is a fighter. Forced to disguise herself as a boy and serve in the king's army, Alex uses her quick wit and fierce sword-fighting skills to earn a spot on the elite prince's guard. But when a powerful sorcerer sneaks into the palace in the dead of night, even Alex, who is virtually unbeatable, can't prevent him from abducting her, her fellow guard and friend Rylan, and Prince Damian, taking them through the treacherous wilds of the jungle and deep into enemy territory.

The longer Alex is held captive with both Rylan and the prince, the more she realizes that she is not the only one who has been keeping dangerous secrets. And suddenly, after her own secret is revealed, Alex finds herself confronted with two men vying for her heart: the safe and steady Rylan, who has always cared for her, and the dark, intriguing Damian. With hidden foes lurking around every corner, is Alex strong enough to save herself and the kingdom she's sworn to protect?
* * *
On the original template I did, the swords looked much better, but when I transferred it over to the black card stock, it was a little harder to get them as sleek. They came out a bit clunky. *le sigh* I chose to go w/the swords stuck in the ground as it came across as defiant to me. And since much of the book sounds like it takes place in a jungle, I think the tree fits in perfectly as well.
 
And, finally, here is the real cover:
 
 
It's beautiful, isn't it? I want to grab that dagger and sta- uh, admire it, while hurting no one! ;) If anyone else wants to get in on the action, Sara's running the contest until Oct. 21st. And if you haven't an artistic bone in your body, she's also running a Rafflecopter giveaway for a second copy of Defy to give out. Yippee! Now everyone wish me luck, please! ;)

44 comments:

  1. All the best in the giveaway! I love how you portrayed the cover. Awesome!

    Nas

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  2. Hi,I like the silhouettes idea. You did a good work:) and if I have to be sincere,I prefer your concept to the real one,it would attract my curiosity.

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  3. Love your cover. That dagger is pretty swanky too. I'd like to uh admire it as well. :)

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  4. What a great story and so much fun! Wow...is all I can say...and so glad you've rediscovered your talent!!!!!!!!!!

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    1. Me too! I should buy a sketch book and start practicing again.

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  5. Awesome work! and good luck in the giveaway!

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  6. Elegant design, Leandra. You should do more book covers.

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    1. I would completely quit my job to design book covers. Perhaps Random House or Scholastic might come calling...ha, ha. ;)

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  7. Wow, it's so cool!! I love all the thought you put into it! Thank you for entering! :D

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    1. You're welcome! Thanks for making it possible, I love getting to participate in this kind of stuff.

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  8. Love the silhouette cover, Leandra! The "real" one is pretty slick, but it's like so many others. Yours is reminiscent of a book jacket design from the '40s. I love silhouette and do a lot of digital graphic design using them. Good luck in the contest!

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    1. Silhouettes are the best! I especially love them on middle grade covers for some reason. And thanks!

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  9. I love your cover interpretation. Best of luck!

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    1. Thanks! My mother in law actually picked up the paper for me as I was working, and she managed to pick the exact color of blue I had in my head. And all I told her was l wanted a light blue, but not a baby blue. My husband picks out great paint colors, so maybe he gets it from her! =)

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  10. Love, love your cover! I love silhouette covers, too. And it's kind of similar to the real one, I think :) Good luck!!

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  11. You did a great job on that cover! And good luck! :)

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  12. Silhouettes are always so striking. Nice choice. And yes, the actual cover is great!

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    1. I really like the rose on top- some delicated atop something deadly. If that's not definat I don't know what is!

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  13. Awesome cover! I like both of them!
    Also, I nominated you for an award at my blog! ashley-nixon.blogspot.com :)

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    1. Cool beans- on my way to check it out now! Thanks!

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  14. Ooo, that looks really good! I hope this inspires you to continue drawing. Good luck in the contest!

    Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

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    1. Thanks! Next time I'm out where I can snag one, I'm going to be picking up a sketch book. And studying some great pb illustrators!

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  15. I think it looks really cool, actually. Really different from the actual cover, but they're both intriguing and evocative. So, not bad for being out of practice!!

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  16. Your cover is awesome, Leandra! You are a woman of many talents! = ) Thanks for posting the book review, as well--it sounds great!

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    1. Thank you! And it does sound really good. It reminds me of Graceling, and I loved that book!

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  17. Leandra, your cover looks good! (Yours looks MG while Sarah's looks YA.) Keep that artistic fire burning. I like doodling, too, even though my pictures don't turn out professionally good, awesome and all. But hey, do whatever makes our soul happy, eh?

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  18. Congrats on the design, Leandra. It's good to have multiple creative outlets.

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    1. It really is. After reading and writing, I love to decorate. My problem is I just get tired of it too quickly and want to redecorate whole rooms again. =/

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  19. I really love your cover! Especially the swords in the ground. I think it's very striking!

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    1. Thanks! And is that striking as in a good blow... ;)

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  20. I love this cover so much! I wish they used your cover instead of the real one. No disrespect to the designer of the original cover, but it looks too romance-novel-ish for my taste.

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    1. Thanks! I had so much fun doing it. If I'm ever lucky enough to be a published author, I'd love to do a contest like this too.

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