Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Today, we have the undercover lowdown on the cover for Elle Strauss's YA time travel novel, CLOCKWISE. Elle's book had a recent cover change and I have to say that I adore the new cover. Elle has joined us to give us the inside scoop.

Karen: Quick! First word that comes to mind when you look at your cover?

Elle: Fun!

2 Karen: Okay, now tell us a little about your story.

Elle: A teen time traveler accidentally takes her secret crush back in time. Awkward.

3.) Karen: You recently redid the cover (I love the new one by the way). Tell us why you did that.

Elle: I decided to indie (self) publish for the first time last September with this book, so it’s kind of my learner book. The whole experience has been schooling. One of the things I learned along the way is there are different types of covers for YA and MG. And one of the strong MG trends is to use illustration. Illustration isn’t something you find on a lot of YA. I didn’t realize this and though I really liked my first cover, is said MG to too many potential readers.

4.) Karen: Was it hard saying goodbye to your old one? (For the record, I liked the old one, but I think the new one fits the story better.)

(original cover)

Elle: Not once I saw the new cover. I lurve it!

5.) Karen: What’s your favorite part about your new cover?

Elle: I love the expression on the model’s face, and the graphic work on the background flash of light.

6.) Karen: Are there any meaningful details you’d like to point out?

Elle: Well, there’s the stop watch. It’s entirely symbolic as an actual stopwatch doesn’t show up in the story.

7.) Karen: If you’d like to give a shout out to your cover designer, photographers, or any other influential folks feel free to do so.

Elle: Nico at Fair Trade Creative , Jessica at Jessica Balfour Photography

8.) Karen: Anything else you’d like to share about the process?

Elle: Well, when you indie publish, you’re responsible for it all. Tracking down and booking a model (if you use one), a photographer, directing the shoot, choosing the photo to use, consulting with your graphics designer until you have something you love. It’s all up to you.

9.) Karen: We like to spread the cover love here at YA Confidential, so, besides your own, what’s your favorite book cover and why?

Elle: If I said Tangled Tides, by Karen Amanda Hooper, would that look like I’m sucking up? J (But really, such a cool cover!) Okay, I’ll say Open Minds by Susan Kaye Quinn because it’s so captivating and accurately reflects the story genre and main character. And I’m reading Imaginary Girls right now, and I really like the photo shot of the model. Knowing what I know now about that process, I appreciate the work and creativity it took to get that.

Karen: The second book in this series, CLOCKWISER just released. Which one do you love more?

Elle: Clockwise will always be my first love, but Clockwiser rocks, too. Just saying.

Karen: You have some cool behind-the-scenes info to share about the day the cover photos were taken. Tell us about it.

Elle: It was freezing out when we did this shoot. I was shivering with a winter coat, scarves and gloves on. The model was so brave! The shoot only lasted 15 minutes because of this and I'm so glad we got two good shots, one for book 1 and 2.

Some other fun things to point out...Elle: Here you'll see the black background and the original tunnel image used as the template for the light graphics to come. The spine line is too sharp and we decided to blur the front to back image over the spine to avoid problems with lining up the spine line. The back cover is laid out but not final. Also note the pocket watch in her hands. You can't really see the whole thing, so Nico took a hand shot from another image that showed off the watch more and switch it for the original hands.

For the final, light graphic was added, black changed to dark blue, title font decided on, pocket watch hands inserted, t-shirt wrinkle lines removed, back cover washed and final text decided upon.

Karen: Ahh, the power of graphic artists.

Big thanks to Elle for the inside scoop on her cover. We know you're itching to read CLOCKWISE now, so you're in luck. Elle is giving away an ebook of CLOCKWISE to a lucky winner. Maybe even more than one winner.

To win, leave a comment and tell us the following: If you could time travel, where would you? (Place, year, event, etc.)

Elle will select the winner (s) based on her favorite answers.


Maddie said...

Wow, I've been writing a time travel novel myself. It's a sci-fi/historical fiction novel.

If I could time travel anywhere, it'd be to the pioneer era. Everything was so much more formal- the courtships, the clothing, the dialogue. While it was a really, really hard time to live in, I think everything was appreciated so much more. When something nice came their way, they stopped to acknoweledge it. They didn't whine and cry when something was hard, they just did it. It was an earnest time period, I think.

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