Has been one big challenge.
In years past, I did good to scramble together one Christmas story. I love Christmas stories, but by the time I’m finally in the mood to actually think about Christmas, it’s upon us. (Crafting gifts has the same issues)
So, last year, I wrote a Christmas story and held on to it for this year. And I’m still running late with it. Ha!
Except for this year, I have more than one Christmas story releasing thanks to joining forces with other romance authors. But I talked about that in an earlier post. If you’ve missed them, check out the newest releases on my website.
This month, I want to talk about finding that perfect cover. I know covers are important. They need to say what genre the story inside is. They need to pop and catch a browsing reader’s attention. They need to sing and dance… kidding. Sorta.
I have one more Christmas story I plan to release this year, but I’m aiming for closer to Christmas on this one. It’s another Madison Creek township novella. If you’ve read Secretly In Love (Which you can. For free. Click the title if you’ve not grabbed it yet.)
In Secretly, we met Sage, Nick, and Leon. This new Christmas release, A Thousand Wishes, is Leon’s story. I’ll come back later, once it’s released, and talk more about the actual story. What I need your help with today is feedback on the cover I’m creating for this story.
Let me show you the cover’s progression…
I started with this.
It’s not too bad, but it really didn’t speak Christmas. Because it takes place at a small lakeside town in Michigan, the story starts off with a group of young people going out to the docks to stargaze and watch for the Northern Lights.
From there, a wish is made.
And you know what happens when wishes are made in stories.
Still…it wasn’t working for me. Yes, the couple was holding hands so there’s a hint of romance, but it felt too dark. and my title disappears in the lights.
I did a bit of research and came up with another concept idea.
I liked this one a little better. But when I asked a couple of friends, I got an eh… it’s okay. Still, there was the problem of it not conveying Christmas. You see, Kenna, the heroine, is in Madison Creek selling Christmas trees. But then something happens… a little run-in with Leon… and her hopes of selling enough trees to finally with the bonus cash prize her father offers every year are dashed. (After her run-in with Leon, she’s in desperate need of a new car)
I do like silhouette covers. I think they’re cute. I’d almost thought about hanging a few lights around the border. Wouldn’t that make it more…Christmasy? Yeah, I know I was stretching.
So again, I went back to the drawing board. And as I did a little more research, I found that I liked the scenery covers. They were quaint, eye-catching, and appealing. To me, anyway.
Then I came up with this!
The town speaks Christmas. There’s a big tree. Kenna sells trees. There are stars, which incite wishes. And there’s a couple, which hints at a possible romance.
I say hint, because technically, Leon is already taken. You see, he has a beautiful girlfriend that’s a model. But you’ll have to wait and find out more about all that.
For now, I’m curious about your thoughts on these covers. This one is still a work-in-progress. I’m debating about the couple and have some others I might try out before I call it done.
Share your feedback in the comments below and I’ll pick someone to win a copy of my other Madison Creek Christmas story – Candy Lane Christmas.
Do I need to keep working on it?
Is there a special kind of Christmas cover that you are often drawn to?
Do you even enjoy reading Christmas stories around the holidays?
Candy Lane Christmas
(Madison Creek Town Series Novella Book 2)
The Sweetness of Starting Over
Candyce Barkley tosses the fake engagement ring, the last token of her sordid past, out the window onto the highway 35N. No looking back. No regrets. Today is the beginning of a new start, a second chance make something of her messed-up life. Her old hometown of Madison Creek is going to love her plans to open a Candy store. If, that is, they can overlook her history for troublemaking. If her family and townsfolk can forgive and forget, then her candy shop might stand a chance at succeeding.
Finley Quinn only has a few miles left before he reaches his stagnant life in Madison Creek. He’s fallen into a rut that he can’t seem to climb out of. A quick stop at the coffee shop results in his bumping into a flash from the past with pink hair and candy tattoos. He hadn’t seen Candy Bar Barkley since he admitted to her that he loved her. Instead of returning his feelings, she high-tailed out of town. When they end up sharing a ride back home, he figures out that his heart hadn’t been stuck all this time, it had followed the wild girl and she still had it, whether she knew it or not.