Interview - Take Ten With Jeaniene Frost by Linnae Crady
Author Jeaniene Frost gives Cover Cafe her take on romance book covers!
1. What was the first book you remember reading? Can you describe the cover of the book and did you like the cover?
I read various childrenís books as a little girl, but the first adult novel I can remember reading was SKYE OíMALLEY by Bertrice Small. Made me an instant addict of the romance genre! I used to measure my allowance in terms of how many books it could buy.
2. Have you ever purchased a book because of the cover alone? If yes, which one and why?
Um, yes, Iím guilty of buying books based on covers Ė but only if I like the back description of the story, too. Which one? Iíve done that a lot of times. A pretty cover will lure me to pick up the book, but again, if the back cover description doesnít interest me, I will put it back down.
3. When did you first know you were destined to be a writer?
Hmm. I wouldnít say I felt destined to be a writer. I always wanted to write books, from as far back as age twelve, but I never knew if I had the determination to actually finish one. Took me until I was thirty to find that determination to finish an entire novel. I still donít take it for granted, either. Each time I finish a book, I feel a special sense of accomplishment.
4. Who gave you your first break in publishing?
Erika Tsang from Avon/HarperCollins bought my first two books (and each novel thereafter, but it started with a two-book contract). Erika actually made the offer without even finishing the first novel Ė and then she didnít change her mind once she found out the ending was rather unusual, lol. I really love how Erika doesnít try to change my stories into her idea of how they should be, but rather into the best version of my idea of how they should be. Itís what makes her a great editor.
5. What was your first published book and what did the cover look like? Did you love it or hate it and why?
HALFWAY TO THE GRAVE was my first novel, and I love, love, loved the cover for it. When I was asked if I had any ideas for the cover, I said I wanted just my heroine on the front, looking tough and sexy, a big knife somewhere, thigh-high high boots, and a cemetery background. Could the artist (Thomas Egner) have possibly nailed it any better? Nope, I donít think so, either.
6. Do you believe a cover can increase or decrease the sales of a book? Have any covers affected the sales of your books?
I believe covers can have an influence on readers, but thatís probably because Iím basing my answer on how I browse books Ė which may not be how anyone else does it. A gorgeous cover wonít guarantee a sale for me, but it will guarantee that Iíll read the back and maybe the first couple pages of a book. If I havenít heard of the author before, a pretty cover might help me discover them. Of course, for authors Iím already a fan of, the cover makes no difference. If I know I like a particular author, Iíd buy their book even if thereís a picture of dirt on the cover.
Do I think my covers have helped my sales? Yes, especially when I was a brand new author. Readers emailed me and told me that though theyíd never heard of me, they picked up my book because the cover was hot. I have no idea what percentage of readers first gave me a shot because of the cover. Maybe only a few. But for a new author, every little bit is a big help.
7. What has been your favorite book cover from all of your releases and why?
Oh wow, thereís no way I can choose. Itís usually whatever coverís the most recent. I get dazzled by each new cover for my books, I have to confess, and then thatís the favorite until the next one comes along.
8. What trends do you see in book covers currently and in the future?
Well, Iíve seen less of the ďcartoonishĒ covers in urban fantasy and romance, so I wonder if thatís a trend that ebbed. As for whatís current and upcoming, Iím not sure. Close-up shots of female faces seem to be popular in the YA market, and Iíve seen a few of those in the romance market, too. Is that a current trend? Maybe. Will there be more of it in the future? Thatís up to the art directors .
9. What has been your least favorite cover from all of your releases and why?
I donít have a least favorite. No, Iím not just sucking up to my art department by saying that. I love all my covers. Each one showed an excellent visual impression of the mood, theme, and story for the books. About the only thing that I might have changed on one my covers was the font color for ONE FOOT IN THE GRAVE. Iím not a huge fan of orange, but thatís a personal preference, and the cover, even with my not-favorite color of orange, still rocks.
10. Do you have a current or upcoming release to share with Cover Cafe? Please give us the details and a peek at the cover, too!
My current release is DESTINED FOR AN EARLY GRAVE, which came out on July 28th, 2009. Itís book four in the Night Huntress series, with Cat and Bones finding not just their lives, but also their relationship in jeopardy in this novel. As you can see from the picture, I was gifted with another gorgeous cover and stepback for my latest release. DESTINED also netted me my highest debut placement on the bestseller lists (# 7 on the New York Times and # 38 on the USA Today list). Did DESTINED FOR AN EARLY GRAVEís beautiful cover help with those numbers? *wink* Iíll let you decide.
Update: Jeaniene's next release in the Night Huntress series is THIS SIDE OF THE GRAVE Book Five, scheduled for February 22, 2011.
Thank You Jeaniene!
Linnae Crady () (September, 2009)
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Author image, and covers are displayed with permission from author.