Melissa Walker

Friday, April 18th, 2014 Melissa Walker

Welcome to the second post of my Release Week Cover Stories extravaganza! (Lovestruck Summer is officially released… TODAY!) I use the word extravaganza because each day, as I interview a new author about their cover, I will also be giving away a copy of the book we’re talking about. To enter to win, just leave a comment about the Cover Story. I’ll choose a winner exactly a week later.
same difference cvr.jpg Siobhan Vivian is one of my favorite people, and I adored her spring release, Same Difference. Today, she shares her Cover Story:
“I was extremely anxious about the cover for SAME DIFFERENCE when my editor called me into his office for a meeting to brainstorm possible directions. At the time, I was just about to finish up the first draft of the book, and the story still wasn’t clicking together the way I wanted it to. If my editor had asked me any questions about theme or whatever, I probably would have had a complete meltdown.
“But part of me hoped that if we did come up with something amazing for a cover, it could act like a lighthouse, and I could follow that beam of light through the fog and arrive safely on the shores. To me, covers and titles can help in that way. They can bring clarity, focus.
“Anyhow, my editor pitched me a couple of concepts. These are the two I remember: 1) A photograph of a girl, painting her self-portrait. You wouldn’t see her actual face, only the portrait. 2) A photograph of a girl from the waist down, carrying her art portfolio which would be covered in a bunch of random stickers.
“On the surface, these felt like okay solutions. After all, SAME DIFFERENCE was a book about a girl who goes to a summer art program–which was also the stock answer I’d been giving to people who asked what my new book was about. But I wasn’t completely sold either. Their ideas seemed so art-heavy. And I wondered if that kind of approach would alienate readers who didn’t find that kind of experience interesting.
“It challenged me to dig to the heart of my story. And I quickly realized that even though SAME DIFFERENCE had art in it, art it wasn’t the crux of the story. The meat and bones were Emily’s journey as she tried to figure herself out. A girl stuck between two worlds, two friends.
“Hmmm… I ran home and went onto the stock photo sites and started doing some research. I typed in TEEN and GIRL and REFLECTION. A couple interesting pictures came up. But when I saw the one that would turn out to be my cover.
“First off, the girl was PERFECT. I mean, she was beautiful…but she also still looked like a normal girl. (This has always been so important in my covers! Real girls only!) And I loved the reflection, and watching her step out of the glass and leave a version of herself behind. Totally a slam dunk, IMHO! I sent the photo to my editor, who shared it with the design team. Everyone agreed it was perfect.
“Finding that cover definitely gave me the clarity to push through the rest of my first draft with confidence. Once I found out who Emily really was, there was no looking back!”
marcelle.jpg“And… I got a FaceBook message from the model! She lives in South Africa and a friend found my book and recognized her. She was so excited, and I was too! Here she is, and her name is Marcelle.”
“Also, someone had commented on my LJ a long time ago that they thought she looked familiar from another cover, Busted: Confessions of an Accidental Player by Antony John. I couldn’t tell for sure, but sent her the link. busted_350.jpgTurns out it IS her…and her brother. So she went from ZERO to a cover star of two YA books in a matter of minutes!”
How cool is that? Love meeting-the-model stories. And, I love how Siobhan had to dig deeper into her story to find the right cover. Nice!
What do you guys think? Comment below for a chance to win a signed copy of Same Difference, direct from Siobhan! And stay tuned for more Release Week fun!
PS-Today is the last day to enter Stephanie Kuehnert’s Women Who Rock Wednesday contest, and the last day to enter last week’s Win-It Wednesday. Good luck!

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66 Comments

  1. Briana says:

    That’s pretty cool about the cover model :)

  2. Sissy Willis says:

    ” . . . watching her step out of the glass and leave a version of herself behind.” The description — and the image itself — are pure poetry.

  3. Alea says:

    This cover story gives me chills! That’s so awesome about the cover model! Back to the cover concepts, I personally would have flipped for an art based cover because I’m all about art. And actually the first concept sounds very Norman Rockwell!
    No need to enter me!

  4. Nisha says:

    I completely understand. The title, and sometimes pictures, help direct my story when I can’t decipher the forest from the trees, so to speak.
    Great cover story!
    http://www.nisha-sharma.com/blog

  5. Sylvia says:

    The reason I want this book is because of the cover. There’s just something about it that draws me in. I really love your cover stories because one of the major factor that draws me in reading a book is its cover!

  6. Amber says:

    That is an awesome story behind the cover! I saw this a week or so ago in the bookstore and adored the cover. It just looks like the type of story I would probably enjoy!

  7. JenP says:

    I actually think she looks a lot like the model on the cover of ‘Story of a Girl,’ too.

  8. Chrissie says:

    Congrats on your Release Day! Great cover story… this is yet another book I’m looking forward to reading, and I agree – love the cover and the way it really shows the main character’s journey.
    -Chrissie

  9. Amee says:

    I love this cover. I think it’s neat that the model found out and contacted her! How cool. :)

  10. I’d like to know how they did that photo…

  11. Steph Burgis says:

    That’s a gorgeous photo! And I love the fact that the model was so excited about it. What a wonderful story!

  12. pepsivanilla says:

    I really like this cover and the whole feel of it just makes me want to read this book! I love the story about the cover model too :)

  13. I agree with everyone else. The cover is really amazing. I love when covers are soft and pleasing to the eye. This one falls in both categories! It looks really amazing!
    And congrats on the book release! I’m going to head up to our student union later today to see if they have your book :) If not I’ll have to wait until exams are over before purchasing it :)
    -Samantha

  14. Ellie says:

    What a great cover and story! I really want to read this.
    Very cool, the model contacting the writer.

  15. Alexa says:

    I normally don’t like covers with people’s faces but this one really works. I love the reflection, it really works well with the title.

  16. Aww, I think this is one of the best cover stories yet! I love Siobhan Vivian and can’t wait to read this one!

  17. Diana Dang says:

    I love the cover because the model is simply so pretty in the most normal way! =))

  18. Melissa N Walker says:

    I forgot to tell you congrats on the release when I commented over at Readergirlz, so I’ll do it here.
    Congratulations!
    And, I love the cover of Same Difference! The reflection on the window is what really does it for me! It’s a great look.

  19. Tiff says:

    Congrats on Lovestruck Summer! Can’t wait to go pick it up.
    I love the Same Difference model, too…she looks young enough to be a YA, but also pretty, normal, and a little mature for her age. And yeah, the reflection is totally awesome!

  20. Clean Simple says:

    I love hearing the back story about the cover. The back story of the cover story?? :-)

  21. Melissa N Walker says:

    Yay! I just got my Amazon notification that my book has shipped! And just in time for school to be out, so maybe I’ll have time to read it!

  22. MJ says:

    Loved hearing the story!!
    mj.coward[at]gmail.com

  23. Hannah R. says:

    I really like this cover. Even though I have never heard of this author, I would pick up this book if I saw it at a bookstore because of the cover. I also thought the model story was really cool! :)

  24. Nora says:

    It must be so cool to hear from the model–the face behind your character!

  25. Kelly says:

    That’s just too cool. Who wouldn’t want to be on not just one, but two book covers??

  26. Mya says:

    YAY!!! Happy release day!!!
    That’s an awesome cover story. I didn’t even realize that a lot of covers are made from stock photos (well, the actual photographed ones) but I suppose it makes sense, considering how many similar covers are out there!

  27. Ann says:

    Happpy Release day!

  28. sara says:

    I really like this cover. The photo is stunning!
    Sara
    sosarora_11 @ hotmail.com

  29. Avery says:

    That’s a really neat story about the girl, and the reflection picture seems like it fits perfectly with the story. Very cool.

  30. shelburns says:

    Love your cover stories! I’d love to win this one. BTW, Lovestruck Summer came in the mail today!
    shelcows AT gmail DOT com

  31. Happy release day, Melissa!
    Way to rock the book covers, Marcelle & brother. Congratulations!
    Siobhan, you already know this, but it bears repeating: great cover, and I LOVE the ALFA cover.

  32. This was a really interesting story. I never thought about how the cover could clarify the plot for an author. I guess I always thought of it was the other way around.

  33. Reyna says:

    I love this cover. I think that it looks so good! I’m excited to read this book!

  34. Thao says:

    To be honest I’m not THAT into the cover, but there’s strangely something that draws me to it. I cannot explain.

  35. Stephanie says:

    The cover is nice, it really makes me want 2 help her.U kno? Can’t wait 2 read this!

  36. Llehn says:

    When I first saw the cover, my first instinct was that it was an Olsen twin! Thanks for sharing your cover story!

  37. NotNessie says:

    I love your cover stories. And I love this cover a lot. Such an interesting image.

  38. Ashley says:

    I think it was a good idea to focus more on the soul of the book rather than specifically the art theme. I’m not a big art geek so I wouldn’t necessarily pick up a book where I feel like that was the main idea of the book… but when it’s just incorporated and something else is the real idea behind the story then I’d probably be more willing to read it.
    Anyway, I have a copy of it here, the one I need to pass along… so I look forward to reading it soon. =)

  39. Lisette says:

    Whoa sounds super awesome! I REALLY like this cover it’s so…curious-like hehe I don’t know how to explain it :)

  40. Ashley says:

    That is so cool about the cover model!
    Please enter me for this contest.
    booksobsession(at)gmail(dot)com
    Thanks!

  41. Ashley says:

    That is so cool about the cover model!
    Please enter me for this contest.
    booksobsession(at)gmail(dot)com
    Thanks!

  42. goodbekah says:

    I’m a fan of this cover. I have to agree that the girl looks pretty and normal. I am curious about the book, because the cover gives nothing away. I think with the art covers, it would at least show a little of what the book was about. but I still like it!

  43. Miss Erin says:

    I love this cover story! And Siobhan rocks.

  44. Amy says:

    This cover makes you wonder. Why is she looking away? Its as if she is looking away from herself. As if she is leaving herself behind (kind of building on first comment). Or she wants to go away but she still has her original self. Its also really interesting to know about the model. (not on subject but I liked how you included something about Violet in Lovestruck Summer). ;)

  45. Steph Su says:

    Wow! I really like this cover, but I think I liked the story behind it even more. I’m always intrigued by who goes into the design of the cover–the model, the designer, photographer, etc., so this is great!

  46. Lauren says:

    I really like this cover. Also, after reading the summary for this book on Amazon, I think it goes along with the book perfectly.

  47. Jana says:

    Wow! So actually seeing the cover helped the author complete the first draft? I guess a picture IS worth a thousand words. Love the duality of the heroine and her reflection.

  48. Nancy says:

    The girl on this cover is great…beautiful but not PERFECT. I mean, I even love how her hair is a little messed up, not overly primped. The reflection is great, too.

  49. Carlene says:

    I love the cover of the book. I think it really works with the girl looking fresh and not made up.
    Thanks
    Carlene

  50. Chelsea says:

    I think it’s perfect. Before I even read the story, I thought it just made perfect sense.
    A reflection is the same, yet different and what do you know! the title of the book is “same, different”
    it’s just perfect.
    If I were the author, I would have screamed in excitement when that came together.

  51. Genevieve says:

    That is so cool! I love the cover. It’s funny how the model has two pictures of her on book covers. And I have to agree, she looks so perfect for the book because she doesn’t have every hair in the right place.

  52. Lizie says:

    That is such a cool cover and story.
    Simple but effective.

  53. Erica says:

    Very nice cover, and very interesting story. I’ve been seeing this book on a lot of blogs and hope to read it very soon.

  54. Erica says:

    Very nice cover, and very interesting story. I’ve been seeing this book on a lot of blogs and hope to read it soon.

  55. Pam says:

    I love the reflection! Every teenager feels like they are constantly changing – trying to be everything to everyone in all situations. This creates a visual of that struggle that we all have faced.

  56. Sami says:

    I would love to get my hands on this book. I’ve been interested in it for so long.

  57. Valerie says:

    I would LOVE to win this book! I’m reading A Little Friendly Advice now and I’m having difficulty putting it down.

  58. Reema Atoura says:

    OMFG!! I WANT TO READ THIS BOOK SOOOOO BAD BUT THEY DONT HAVE IT AT MY LIBARY YET AND MY MOM SAY BOOKS ARE STUIP TO BUY CAUSE YOU ONLY READ THEM ONCE BUT I HAVE A FEELING IF I GET THIS BOOK ILL READ IT TWICE OR THREE TIMES! I LOVED SIOBHAN VIVIAN’S BOOK “A LITTLE FRIENDLY ADVICE” THAT I READ IT THREE TIME :) I HOPE TO WIN THIS CONTEST!!
    THANKS SO MUCH FOR HAVING THIS CONTEST! :)
    (OHH YAH AND THAT COVER IS AWESOME IT SOOO LOOKS LIKE THE GIRL IS SEARCHING FOR SOMETHING…AND THAT SOMETHING MUST BE FOR HERSELF…HER RESON FOR LIFE :D )
    I HOPE I WIN :)

  59. Erika Lynn says:

    I have been dying to read Same Difference! count me in
    sports dot erikalynn at gmail dot com

  60. Shveta says:

    Siobhan rocks, and I’d love a copy of her book. :)

  61. hannah says:

    nice. i am not always a big fan of face-covered- covers (lol!!) but this one, you could tell, means something. it’s not just some pretty girl, but a girl with a certain expression on her face, making the reader wonder what the girl is really thinking.
    what does the cover mean? no clue! am i gonna find out! heck ya i am!

  62. Maddie says:

    The cover is soo cool!! I would not know how to do that!! I know exactly what she is doing!! Which is very good!! I really want to read this book but it is not in my library or any close libraries!!! I love this author I read her other book in under 2 days!! I could not put it down!! I really want this book!!!

  63. Marie says:

    I think the cover is great! Congrats!!
    marielay@gmail.com

  64. Leann J says:

    This looks so interesting, I love how cool it looks. She looks like she’s actually thinking about something, not just “look pretty, look pretty”

  65. Jamie says:

    My story is similar to this one. I see things differently than all my friends so i thought i should take different some classes id be more interested in. I’m taking music and art class and I’m a first chair player in my music class and I have a perfect grade in art. Not too many people can say that. I had to branch off from my average friends. That was the hardest. Now i am friends with girls who have purple hair. haha. My boyfriend is also an amazing musician. Who wouldve known?

  66. Court says:

    This girl on the cover looks JUST LIKE Ellen Page!

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