One more change … and it’s a big one!

March has been a very busy month for Manifold Press, in the run up to announcing our new May titles on 1 April. And, just in case you might wonder if it’s an April Fools’ joke, we want to take this opportunity to give you a preview of a change that will be implemented on that day.

This is the last of our significant changes for now, but it’s a doozy.

We are going to change our book cover design.

I know that many of you love our current designs, and have made a point of telling us so. Similarly, some people haven’t been so impressed, and have likewise told us! Our covers have certainly been a distinctive part of the Press’s identity. In professional wrestling terms, they have brought us a lot of ‘heat’! (Which is a good thing.)

However, after almost six years in business, it felt like time to make a change and try something a bit different.

We are hoping that those of you who love the current designs will stay with us through this change, as we wanted to broadly keep to our current approach. We’re still focussing on an image that reflects the setting or theme, as we believe this helps us emphasise that before anything else, story (and character) is what the Press is most interested in. For better or worse, we are still avoiding the more obvious romance tropes on our covers – and we still want to leave the appearance of our characters to our readers’ imagination.

We were delighted to work with a friend of the Press, Michelle Peart, in creating these new designs. She is also a writer, so she certainly empathised with what we’re trying to achieve. If you want to connect with Michelle, you can browse to her writerly blog The Copper River or follow her on Twitter @shellpeart.

Michelle created a number of draft designs, and we ended up choosing one of them, and then establishing variations that would help identify an individual title’s genre. The covers will vary depending on whether the setting is contemporary or historical, and on whether the story is paranormal.

I feel that the important distinction we’ll make via the covers, however, is whether the story is romance or fiction. We’ll be following this up with new tags on our website, but we’re colour-coding it into the covers as well, with romance indicated by a red strip and fiction by a blue. We know it’s important that the reader knows what they’re getting!

We had some real fun with the draft covers … The ideas we used were all for imaginary books – as written by Ewan Byge, one of the characters in my novel THE ‘TRUE LOVE’ SOLUTION. It seemed easiest to start with a fresh slate, and not worry about existing content or the comparisons inherent in using actual Press titles.

So … if you’re anything like me, you’re curious to have a glimpse at the draft designs. I’ve included four samples below the cut. I hope you like them! I have to say that I love them. And if it’s any reassurance, I think the covers for our real titles (that you’ll see on 1 April) are even stronger still.

Contemporary Fiction
Contemporary Fiction
Contemporary Romance
Contemporary Romance
Historical Fiction
Historical Fiction
Historical Romance
Historical Romance

Friends and Readers, what do you think … ?

6 thoughts on “One more change … and it’s a big one!”

  1. Oooh, lovely! I like the branding with its colour-coded line, and the covers shown are clear, strong images that will stick in the mind 🙂

    I’ve been looking forward to seeing your new cover image style since you mentioned it when I was browsing your table at UK Meet!

    1. We didn’t know what it would be when we were talking about it – just that there would be one! Lots of people have worked very hard on this, so it’s great that you like it – we hope other people will, too.

  2. I’m not convinced. The earlier style set Manifold much more clearly as a cut above the rest. If change is necessary I might have looked at a new range of colours, or horizontal rather than vertical. Then again you guys know how much of a fuddy/dyddy I can be!

    1. It’s been quite a difficult decision, we have to confess, but we didn’t want to get stuck in a rut. Hopefully the real new covers, when they go live in a couple of weeks’ time, will be more your cup of tea!

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