Happy Wednesday, and welcome to the second of my We’ve Got It Covered posts. Today is the start of the Indie Cover Hall of Fame competition, and I’m asking all readers to nominate their favourite indie-author cover. Here are the ‘rules’:

  • You can’t nominate your own cover, or one that you’ve designed (if you’re a cover designer)
  • One nomination per person please
  • The book can have been published at any time but must be self-published and available for sale now
  • Please provide the link to the book with your nomination, the author and the title.
  • Tell us why you like the cover so much. What is it about the design that really grabs you?

It’s as easy as that! Last week we talked to cover designer Berni Stevens, who mentioned that many author-designed covers were identifiable because of typeface design. I’d have to agree – one of my pet hates is inelegant lettering on covers. (And don’t even get me started on Comic Sans!) Which is why, after much deliberation, my own nomination for the Indie Cover Hall of Fame 2013 is …

Celina Grace LG

I happen to know a bit about this cover, as it was designed by my own cover designer Chris Howard. Look at the attention to detail on the lettering – the way Grace seems to sit on the wall, with the G almost appearing to tip over, and how the word Lost is disappearing behind Girls. I also love how the background is blurred and the girl really brought into focus. This is the best kind of indie cover, and not only because it would sit happily beside any trad-published book – it’s the best kind because the author had a big hand in it. In fact, this is a re-design of Celina’s own author-designed cover. And this is where it gets interesting. Celina’s original cover used the same image – this idea was hers – but because, like most authors, she didn’t have access to the best graphic design experience or technology, Celina had to resize to fit the photograph and use her own skills to produce a cover. Here is the original version (I had to hunt high and low to find this!):

CG LG before

The only thing intrinsically wrong with this is the narrowing of the girl due to aspect ratio – the lettering is still very, very good for a self-designed cover. (Look how the C and G of her name are bigger.) But it’s fascinating to see how the designer turned a great idea into a beautiful cover – and that is, after all, what we pay them for!

So, over to you. You’ve got 2 weeks to nominate your favourite indie covers, then I’ll display the Hall of Fame on the blog and ask 3 professional cover designers to choose their favourite, and ask readers to vote as well. The winning cover will have its own special feature.