We were honored and delighted to have "Men & Women: Getting Into Each Other's Genes" receive the award for "Best Book Cover Design" in nonfiction from The Book Designer in June! There were lots of terrific entries. I am especially grateful the book received the honor, because I am not a graphic designer, just a girl on a budget. It was basically my first "solo flight" in book cover design. (I had a lot of help on my first book cover for "Aging With Ungirdled Passion" from my very talented graphic designer friend Lucy Thacker). While I really like how the "Men & Women" cover turned out, I must confess it took quite some time to get there! Fortunately, I had valuable input along the way. Here, I will take you on my clumsy journey to the final design! By the way, for my fellow authors, I have found thebookdesigner.com to be a FABULOUS resource for expert advice and inspiration!
First, a little background. While I wrote "Men & Women's Genes" with my hilarious brother Bob Nery, sharing the writing 50/50, it was agreed I would handle the cover design solo. Since ours is a book of humor essays taking a balanced and seriously tongue-in-cheek look at the differences between the sexes, we wanted a cover that instantly conveyed "humor" and would appeal to both men and women. My research (and my gut) told me more women would buy this book than men. Still, because it's a perfect gift for a guy's birthday, anniversary, Christmas or Father's Day, men needed to feel comfortable being seen with it. I set to work using InDesign to try to come up with something.
Initially, I thought the cover should "jive" with the cover of my first book. (We girls love for things to match!) The cover of "Aging With Ungirdled Passion" features the illustration of the "ungirdled woman" created by my very talented artist friend Vicki Bruner who graciously allowed me to use it both for the banner of this blog and the cover of the first book. I thought another of Vicki's illustrations (and the same font) would be a great way to add cohesiveness to my "line" of two books. Vicki did the following illustration for a line of greeting cards we produced together. I thought it would be ideal. Hence, my first rough mockup: