Uncovering the story

Trying to squeeze in a post between yesterday’s full day take-niece-for-procedure (everything’s fine, just checking off a box) and today’s spring training adventure up the coast (out the door in a couple of hours).

As my beloved state fights to return to the embracing (and snowbird-chasing) temperatures I adore, I get ever closer to a return to the beach and, finally, a return to writing.

After enough recent engaging walks and rambling mental imagery, I feel a (light) stirring of my writing muse to get back to my blind typing on the mini-laptop.

That thought process had me thinking about my trilogy and, not for the first time, I wondered if things might have gone differently for it had I chosen a cover image other than that which I ultimately used.

Looking back over some of the reviews the books received, it always fills me with chagrin that so many people assumed What if? was a children’s book. Sure, the cover is cartoony in style, but I never expected that assumption on the part of potential readers, especially in light of all the “adult” animated movies released in recent years.

That led me to wondering if I should re-release the book with a new cover, a more “adult” image that would attract more of the young adult audience I intended to be reading the book originally.

In subject matter and vocabulary, the book was aimed above the (apparently) perceived audience. Those few who did partake in the reading seemed to agree it was an enjoyable tale and not simply “kiddie fare.”

The problem is, I like the original cover. I also don’t see some huge surge in sales simply from putting new lipstick on an old pig. Yes, the cover is a huge attraction in getting someone to at least look at the book, but reviews  also draw attention.

Frankly, I just didn’t get enough reviews. Which means I simply didn’t get enough sales, since the percentage of reviews is a minuscule slice of actual readers. To lay that squarely on the cover is unfair, as it more likely had to do with my poor marketing skills (and not enough positive word of mouth).

Would a new cover increase sales? Eh, possibly. It would also take away my (too?) subtle “game” with the covers of having them “grow” more serious with each succeeding book (matching Jeremy’s evolution).

The debate is not dead, but I’m not feeling much of a strong compulsion for a re-release. I suppose if this post received a dozen comments in support for changing the cover, I could be swayed, but for now, I think the story will remain under its original cover.

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