To all the authors out there, how many of you have had to fill out a cover art request form? If you're published or in the process of being published, I'm sure you have. What do you put on there? What requests do you have? Your vision of your book - your baby, that you've worked on for months, sometimes years - is going to need a "face" to go with that story. What do you really want on there? If you could design it yourself, what would you do? What colors do you want? What fonts do you like? Do you have a picture already in your mind? What would you hate?
The next time you fill out a cover request, think about all those things. It may be just me, because I am so new to the business, that I really need lots of detail. I know that there are several publishers and cover artists who really don't give the author any input on the cover, but if you do sign on with a publisher who really cares about what you want, please think about what you really want. Draw it out on a piece of paper - even with stick figures. Get a good idea of how your composition needs to be.
I've had a great introduction into these cover art requests - some were very simple requests, some a little odd (one author asked me for a dog peeing in the snow). Regardless of the request, I always try to make the author's vision come to life. There are brilliant artists out there (Anne Cain, Tuesday Dube, April Martinez all come to mind) who could create masterpieces out of some of the crazier requests. Me? Not so much. I try very hard to make the cover look like it represents the story. I need the author's help to come up with a cover. I can't see inside the author's head. More than likely, I don't even get to read the book until after it's published, so I have no idea what to do without extensive input from the author.
So, when those cover art forms come along - really think about it. Your cover artist will thank you. If not, she'll make fun of you on all her chat loops.
Just sayin'. :)