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Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi,

I need your expert eagle eye.

The Cygnus Five books have been through an array of covers. It’s almost embarrassing. The first ones looked like Romance covers – not really appealing to fans of space opera. The second ones resembled hard SF and were colourless and unappealing. For the third ones, I went too far into the territory of old fashioned pulp SF from the 1970s – which was when I started reading SF/F, and thus burned into my brain as what SF/F ought to look like.

Finally it occurred to me to actually look at the covers of books that are selling today. Astonishing, I know.

I discovered three things;

  1. BIG FONTS.
  2. They’re all blue
  3. They have spaceships on them.

Cool, I thought. Let’s make a cover which is blue and has a spaceship on it. So I went to look for some pictures, and the first one I really loved was bright green. *Sigh.* So I attempted to make the bright green one blue. Then I made an actual blue one as well.

So now I really need your advice. Which of these two mockups do you think is the best?

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alexoliverauthorSue Burke Recent comment authors
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Sue Burke
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I think the one on the left is more visually striking. The design has more movement. It implies that the book will also go somewhere, and it will move powerfully. The one on the right isn’t bad, but what is the focus, the crescent moon, the space ships? Perhaps it would be better with only one space ship.

alexoliverauthor
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alexoliverauthor

Oh, thanks so much Sue! That’s right in line with what I’m hearing from folks on Tumblr as well. I’m so glad I asked, because I personally prefer the green one, and I might have gone for that and shot myself in the foot *again*. You obviously have a better feel for things. Thank you!