Yesterday, I set on a mission – to create an author logo/nameplate for my book covers. This may be a bit unconventional, but I wanted to create a cohesive way to identify my author name with future book covers. I’ve noticed that most authors, except a few, use a free style when it comes to have their names printed on a book cover. I never understood this, and while I agree that a book’s title is more important and the first thing you notice, besides the art cover, I like the idea of matching an author’s name to a style/logo that you can recognize. I’ve noticed that Nicholas Sparks has a cohesive flow to his name on the covers of the books, and just by catching a glimpse at one of his covers, I already recognize the image and associate it with his work. He is one of the few that I’ve noticed doing this, although not in all his books. If you check out a few book covers from different authors you will see what I mean.
I came up with a nameplate that I will include in future book covers. I had fun designing it and think that it fits my personality as well as the essence of my stories – that author’s persona that leaks throughout the story. I will not include it in Moonlit Valley, since the cover is already set to go – a scene from the book. However, since I am planning to write for the long run, it will become part of my brand. To me, branding is important, as it becomes as essence, with time.
For authors, branding includes many things besides a pen name, but I think that details are important, even when you are a first time author trying to build your brand slowly, which is what I am trying to do now. I have thought about many examples of branding from well-known authors and will use two examples to illustrate my point. When you think of branding, you can visualize Stephen King, (who is the king) and see how he has built his brand around his name. Or, you can think of J.K. Rowling and see how she built her brand around the Harry Potter series. For her, publishing another book outside the series, got her harsh criticism because her brand grew and developed around this character. On the other hand, Mr. King may publish anything he wants, and his name becomes stronger. I am not sure if you follow my point, but what I mean is that branding for authors goes beyond the product. This got me thinking about creating a way in which I can start building an author’s brand as I continue in my writing journey – a lifetime journey.
Here is the design I came up with, and so far, I think that I am happy with it. I like it because it is different and simple enough that it will not compete with other details going on the cover – it can cohabit, but at the same time, starts building visual recognition – over time, that is. I believe that it is never too early to start building your brand.
Have you thought of branding your pen name/author’s name? What do you think, as far as creating name recognition in future publications?