See All the Stars cover evolution

Hi TLS subscribers!

I’m excited to share with you exclusively the progression of the cover design for See All the Stars. Every book cover has its own unique path, and it’s been incredibly exciting to see mine evolve from a composite that already pretty much kicked cover butt to a final design that incorporates the minor tweaks that took Michael McCartney’s already stellar design to the next level of awesomeness.

Back in April, my editor at McElderry, Ruta Rimas, shared a fun surprise with me: We had the initial cover comp for SATS! Here’s what she had to say about Michael’s initial design, which still holds true about the final:

“The mood is melancholy and contemplative, created by the darkness of the background but also the four swipes of colors (like the four friends) that bleed into one another. The drips provide a sense of tension and the ever-so-off blending cues readers into the fact that this story will not be neat and tidy. The colors themselves are beautiful and electric, which provides a sense of unexpected loveliness. So, this cover is both pretty and disturbing. The stacking of the title, too, I love, in that it takes a poetic and lyrical phrase and changes it from romantic and whimsical to something more like a directive. We HAVE to pay attention to it; it’s bold and thought-provoking.”

I 100 percent agreed! This cover was all I had dreamed of, and more, for just the reasons my editor so eloquently articulated. Plus, I love font-forward covers! Here’s the original design:

My agent and I asked for a minor tweak to the way in which the title font was interacting with the paint streaks, and we settled on this adjusted design before the cover moved on to the next phase in-house: the summer seasonal launch meeting, where it–along with the book!–would be shared for the first time with a variety of people from around McElderry. Fortunately, they loved it too!

See how the font is now raised to sit just above the paint streaks in this revision? It’s the little things.

I was happy with that fix, but then Michael McCartney came up with something even better for the in-house jacket (which is a non-final jacket that’s used by the publisher’s sales team for early distribution to retail accounts). So, there will be changes forthcoming to the final jacket (like, the back will not be blank, and we’re working on some new ideas for the spine), but here’s an exclusive early look at the full jacket spread! Notice how awesome the new shadowing to the base of the title font looks here?

And finally, the team at McElderry added a tag line to the final cover design, pulling it all together.

Thanks for being a part of this journey with me! I’ve been bursting to share my cover with the world for six whole months, and now I can’t shut up about it. Haha. The final book jacket is still a work in progress, and I’ll be excited to share it when it’s done!