Saturday, April 07, 2007

How do readers pick a new author to read? Part II

The cover either entices or detracts. Cover art was most often mentioned in the number one or number two spot. The importance of the cover is reflected in the enormous amount of time and effort publishers and authors devote to designing the cover, often going through dozens of variations before deciding which one is perfect (they think).

Another interesting aspect of covers is how successful ones are imitated. Just look at how many recent chick lit novels feature bright colors, highly stylized lettering and cartoon type characters.

Don’t judge a book by its cover doesn’t ring true with most readers.

They told us:

“First, I look at the cover. If it has a half-naked woman, I put it back.”

“I take my books with me to read while I'm waiting and I'd rather have a nice scene on the cover.”

“If I'm just looking through the shelves, the cover catches my eye first.”

“It's the cover that will attract me pick up the book.”

But not every reader feels this way.

“For me, the cover has no effect on choosing a book.”

“I do most of my book shopping online. I rarely buy in the store. Having said that, the cover does not sway me at all.”


Find out more about book publishing at

Dee and Brian are the authors of The Making of a Bestseller: Success Stories From Authors and the Editors, Agents and Booksellers Behind Them and the novel Over Time

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