I changed the cover of my serialized story for Vella. Why? It gave the wrong feel for the book. It didn’t fit the usual style of urban fantasy or paranormal novels. I loved the moodiness of the first cover’s huge, golden moon and bubbling cauldron, but the witch was too cutsey. Other witch images I found, though, didn’t quite fit either. But instead of “settling” on an image I liked, I should have kept looking for what I needed, because the cover of a book is a reader’s first impression of your story. Covers let a reader know what genre your novel fits in. If you go to Amazon and look at the many covers for thrillers, they all have a similar look or tone. Same goes for historical romance, cozies, or contemporary romance. My cover wasn’t selling what I was writing. Hopefully, the new one lets readers know it’s urban fantasy about witches at a solstice festival where murder is part of the program..
My friend Kyra Jacobs just changed the cover of her book, too–BLUE MANHATTAN. For the same reason. Her book is a paranormal romance, and she wanted to try something different to catch readers’ eyes. Sometimes, though, different doesn’t work. So, like me, she changed things up to say “romance” and “paranormal”…and fun! I think she nailed it.
Covers might work to catch a reader’s attention, but when someone is looking for a certain type of book out of ALL of the books on Amazon, that’s when tags become important. And it was interesting to me to see which tags were the most popular on Vella. Amazon makes it pretty easy. They list the top ones. I thought you might be interested in the top 100, so here’s a link to see them and how the top authors used them: Kindle Vella (amazon.com) I wouldn’t have found this information except I signed up for a reedsy weekly newsletter. Reedsy shares practical blog advice about writing and marketing. So I thought I’d share that, too. Reedsy • Your daily dose of writing, publishing and marketing advice
We all try to write the best book we can, but once we’ve done that, we need to choose the right cover and tags to give it a fighting chance in today’s market. Good luck with your writing and more good luck with your marketing!