As you might know by now (because I’ve been shouting it from the rooftops), Will Write for Food, 2nd edition, is out with a new cover. I thought you might like a behind-the-scenes look at how the cover selection process works and how I ended up with my current cover.
Here’s the original cover of Will Write for Food. This cover came in an email from the publisher (Marlowe & Co.). I loved it immediately and danced around the room. People told me how lucky I was to have a great cover on the first pass. It’s an old-school journalism kind of image, and back in 2005, I was an old-school journalism type of gal. I bought matching jewelry, a bracelet of typewriter keys. My agent gave me a necklace with a “D” typewriter key to celebrate the book’s release.
Fast forward to 2010 and the revision of Will Write for Food. The new publisher (Da Capo Press) said they wanted to freshen up the old cover. Even though I loved the old one, I had to recognize that it needed an update for the new generation of people who want to blog or write memoir. It took me a while to come around. Months, actually.
Da Capo needed a new cover image immediately for the catalog. Below is the first pass, a placeholder because they needed something fast.
Months later, my editor sent me three images. I was lucky that she gave me a choice, because many authors do not get that privilege. All three covers had food images — something that seems obvious now. I had heard that sweets and desserts do well on covers, so that was a consideration.
Below is the runner up. I love the black background and the clean lines of this one.
The next cover seemed like a diet book to me, I suppose because of the veggies. And I love veggies! Maybe I was stuck on the dessert idea. Kind of like how Cooking Light magazine wouldn’t bother with a salad on the cover. But chocolate cake, now we’re talking.
And last, the cover of choice. At first I was taken aback by the softness of the new cover, by its scallops and pink-ish background. But now I like it, and it’s perfect for its target audience of women who want to write about food.
You might also notice that Anthony Bourdain’s generous quote is gone. I asked to have it moved to the back cover, and the editor agreed. The focus of the new edition is blogging, so I wanted a blogger’s endorsement. And who better than Ree Drummond, whose not-even-published-yet memoir was already optioned for a movie starring Reese Witherspoon?