Seeing double?

It seems that even the great and sales-tacular gets the occasional cover doppleganger.

At least it’s not an image used without permission, I suppose.

[Thanks to Katiebabs for the link.]

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  1. 1
    Kwana says:

    Seriously? Even the great could not get her own artist to design a new tat.  That is just tacky and sad.

  2. 2
    Kwana says:

    Well not her but her publisher of course. They should be looking out for her better.

  3. 3
    Kalen Hughes says:

    The Sutcliff novel is WONDERFUL. I love that book!

  4. 4
    phadem says:

    I looked at my stats page and thought Wholly Fucking Shit! LOL.

    Kalen, I loved the sound of Sutcliff’s book when I went to the Amazon reviews. Will definitely be picking it up.

  5. 5
    Kate Pearce says:

    Me too Kalen!! The Rosemary Sutcliff novel is amazing. I read it as a kid and regularly re-read it now. It’s about a freed gladiator in Roman Britain who doesn’t know anything but how to fight. He ends up getting involved in a plot against the Romans and finds his true self and purpose along the way. Absolutely awesome writing. Check it out

  6. 6
    Becky says:

    The same picture is also being used on the Canadian cover of Kelley Armstrong’s Men of the Otherworld.;f=138;t=23537

    This guy gets around!

  7. 7
  8. 8
    CourtneyLee says:

    Can someone perhaps give some clarification? I’d like to know if authors actually have any power over the cover design. I know of some who request a certain feel, color, pose, etc, but I was under the impression that the cover is pretty much under the control of the art department guys/gals, not the author.

    I ask because it drives me nuts when authors take heat for a cover (or a crappy blurb, or a poor printing job), like what’s being done in the comment thread of the linked blog. Someone said that Ward “had the cover changed” of Lover Revealed when the decision to change it wasn’t actually hers. I hate to think of any author losing readers because of anything other than the writing.

    Aside from the twisted arm, I rather like the cover. But then, tattoos make me go gooey, so maybe it’s that.

  9. 9
    phadem says:

    Such a dork, meant Holy F-ing blah blah earlier.

    And CourtneyLee, I know you’re a big regular of Ward’s place (if you’re the same CourtneyLee that was there the short time I was), but I thought the word came down from her board, that she had something to do with the cover being changed on one of the past ones. I really could care less how much/little say so she has, but yeah, sometimes the author does get some input into the covers. I remember Ward saying at one point that certain ones were going to be certain colors, Rehv’s being purple…so that might lead some to assume she has some say so. I know I assumed at one point that someone else wrote her back cover blurbs and I got jumped all over by one of her close peeps, who said that she does write the blurbs. I suppose how much an author is involved in the packaging just differs from one to another.

    Of course, they might get some say so, then have that totally swept aside in favor another idea. It’s sad, but the author is sometimes going to take the “heat” for the book, any part of it, since their name is on the cover. It makes no sense in some cases and does in others. And people are going to discuss that.

    Aside from all that hoopla, that guy really does get around. I suddenly like Ward’s cover better since they didn’t show him copping a squat.

  10. 10
    ev says:

    This is why authors should have some say in their covers.

  11. 11
    Kalen Hughes says:

    99.9% of us have ZERO control. We can ask, beg, etc., but that’s it. Some of the biggies have more control (aka cover approval) and some authors luck out and have an editor who really listens to them.

  12. 12
    Tae says:

    What the BDB is coming out in Hardcover?  Seriously, I may be addicted, but not enough to buy them in hardcover, especially when I don’t even read the whole book (I tend to skip the lesser chapters)

  13. 13
    phadem says:

    Kalen, thanks for speaking up. That Q comes up a lot, authors and cover control. I know I’ve seen a LOT of authors tell readers they have no control. I don’t know that there’s any way to drive that home for good, unless the author states that every time a book comes out and it’s the case with that particular book. Even then, some will still wonder.

  14. 14
    MaryKate says:

    Kmont (phadem) – It was actually me that said that Ward had Butch’s book (LOVER REVEALED) cover changed. I think it was because the first woman they had on the cover was dark haired and Marissa (the heroine) was a blond. I remember because the second girl had some of the most porntastic lips I’ve ever seen.

  15. 15
    phadem says:

    Hi, MaryKate! Others, like you, have MUCH better memories than me; I knew at least one of the covers had changed. But wait – yeah! The lips, lol. I remember the remarks about the lips now.

    Anywho, I don’t mean to take over the comments. Thanks for the pimpage, SB Sarah and Katiebabs. Night all!

  16. 16
    CourtneyLee says:

    Phadem, I am indeed the same CourtneyLee. :) I don’t recall reading on her board that she was the one who made the decision to change Lover Revealed’s cover due to the hair color of the lady model, but I had heard that they changed the image due to a situation similar to this one—it was a stock photo and had been used several times before for romance novel covers. The same thing happened to the original cover image of Lover Unbound—it was changed from stock photo to custom shot. She did say that both times she was pleased with the changes, but I don’t remember her saying that she was the one who initiated it.

    I can totally believe that the editor has influence with the art department so if he/she forwards an author’s request, that could change things. I think it would be nice if authors had more say in how the books are presented because they seem to be the target of any criticism regardless of whether or not they are the ones making those decisions.

    It makes me wonder, though, why we are seeing a lot of image repetition. I’m leaning toward economic reasons: it’s cheaper to use a stock photo (or photoshop one together, even when the results are unfortunate, like Butterballin’) than it is to get a one of a kind shot. With how the economy has everyone nervous and publishers letting people go, pinching pennies on cover design seems reasonable if it means we still get books.

  17. 17

    Can someone perhaps give some clarification? I’d like to know if authors actually have any power over the cover design. I know of some who request a certain feel, color, pose, etc, but I was under the impression that the cover is pretty much under the control of the art department guys/gals, not the author.

    Depends on the publisher and on who the author is, I’d imagine.

    My editor at Berkley asked me for my 5/09 book if I had any ideas but that’s a fairly new thing.  What’s really cool is that I actually had something of an idea for that one…*G*  Normally, I’m like… I dunno…

    Typically with print pubs, my take is that the bigger the author, the more input they’d have into the design.  But input doesn’t mean final say-so.

    Now with ebooks, or rather with the epubs I’m with, authors fill out a cover request form and there’s a place for us to mention scenes we think would work well for a cover, or general ideas.

    Of course, I’m generally in the …“I dunno…you do what you think suits best…” camp.

  18. 18
    amy lane says:

    Nice catch, Kmont!  I hope the Sutcliffe book gets LOTS of press from this—it looks wonderful!

    I’ve got to say that cover control is one of maybe three good things about being an indie—unless, of course, you fuck up, and then the heat is all yours, baby, and thank you very much!
    I have a friend who can actually paint—she writes fantasy and her covers are stop-your-heart-omg-gorgeous… but if she wasn’t independent, I’m not sure they ever would have gotten published.  And that would have really totally unbelievably sucked.

  19. 19
    Lynn M says:

    How timely this topic is! Poor Lynn Viehl is going through serious cover angst right now because her publisher “allowed” her latest book to go out with a pink cover – for her vampire series, no less. The original cover artwork she was sent was actually gorgeous, but when she received her ACs, she was horrified to find that they had been printed with pink foil covers. She’s really in a jam, but what can she do? She’s actually taking it very well.

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