by Richard Risemberg
If your work is to be produced by a trade publisher, the cover will be entirely out of your hands. This can be a good thing, and it can be a bad thing: good, because it is by no means easy to design and produce a good cover; bad, because you may get stuck with a bad one. In A Moveable Feast, Ernest Hemingway notes how he felt that the original cover to Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby was awful, looking like something designed for a cheap sci-fi potboiler–and later mentions Scott’s complaints that the book wasn’t selling well. Fitzgerald was a popular and successful author at the time.
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