Author Cynthia Marcano: Behind The Cover

Behind The Cover

Have you ever wondered the work it takes to create a book cover? Probably not. You see a beautiful or interesting book cover, buy the book, read it and the rest is history.

As an avid reader and a graphic artist, I am always intrigued by beautful covers. There is a story behind its creation. I'd like to share my book cover stories with you.

Eyes On Him

Hand In His

He Has Her Heart

Eyes On Him
My first actual fiction novel, Eyes On Him, was first spawned from working with teen girls and a dare. So naturally, a teen graced its original cover. Nothing fancy. A couple of photos I purchased from a stock website. A few years later, I decided to redo the cover and feature my niece Daminiq who was the inspiration for the book.

She came over for a visit and I casually mentioned redoing the EOH cover and wanting to use her as the cover model. After a few nervous giggles and protests, she agreed. When I pulled out my camera the next minute, she cringed. It was an unscheduled photo shoot and frankly she looked every bit the college freshman she was at the time. She wore sweats and her hair was everywhere. We literally sat in my living room and started shooting pictures. Just like the novel, it was only supposed to be  little fun that evolved into more. I fell in love with the test photo that currently graces the cover. All in a day's...goofing off.

Original Cover
Original Photo
with some editing
Newest Cover Finalized

Hand In His
A few years after Eyes On Him was released, one of my students, now a beautiful young woman had asked when my next book was being released. She loved EOH. I told her that if she modeled for the cover that I would write the book and use her as inspiration for the heroine Nicole. From their spawned the idea of Hand In His.

This photo shoot was anything but goofy. It was a lot of hard work, in fact. My cover model, Christina, has a wonderful testimony regarding self image and has struggled most of her life with her image. So imagine the process of getting her to take photos, let alone liking any of the images.

Our first photo shoot produced some beautiful photos and a cover was made for Hand In His before I finished the book. Several drafts later, I just felt that the cover didn't represent the book well enough. Christina agreed and bravely attempted a second photo shoot. It was a hard process for her and there were tears involved but the final cover was born. Thanks Christina for being a trooper! I plan on using the unused cover for a future project.

Original & Unused Cover
Newest Cover Finalized

He Has Her Heart

Unlike my previous books in the series, Eyes On Him and Hand In His, I already had the cover models chosen before the book was written. I was extremely blessed to find the perfect person to fit my vision of Dream AFTER developing Dream's character.

My beautiful friend Kelly was ecstatic to be the cover model, as was I!

Here are a few unedited pictures!

Isn't she beautiful?! Amazingly, not only does Kelly fit my vision of Dream, Kelly even shares a few of Dream's traits. No, she isn't crazy like Dream, BUT she is fiercely loyal and shares a bond of friendship with best friends she's known she middle school. Kelly's heritage is also very similar to Dream's. I was totally amazed at how much they shared.

Oh, how I wish that every detail of publishing could just fall on my lap so easily, Unfortunately, it isn't. My dilemma was I didn't know which cover to choose! Everyone I asked (which truthfully were only a very selected few) all had a different favorite cover. Talk about being confused.

So I decided to leave it in the hands of my readers and followers, and here are the finalists and the winning cover.