The DATS Trilogy – New Covers Unveiled!
… Just in time for the release of The Lucius Chronicles…
To coincide with the release of The Lucius Chronicles, on 8 March, which is a compilation of the DATS Trilogy that I published during 2017 and 2018, I’ve given each of the individual books that comprise it a makeover, in the form of a new cover.
It wasn’t an easy decision, as I’d grown rather fond of my own crude illustrations over the years, even going so far as to describe them in a Smashwords interview, as having “a certain quirky charm that quite possibly reflects the content better than a professional cover could.” But, on reflection, they just weren’t cutting the mustard, so had to go.
If the books in the DATS Trilogy had been selling like hotcakes then I wouldn’t have bothered changing anything, but the sad truth is that even after almost two years on Amazon and a host of other ebook platforms, I’d hardly shifted more than a dozen or so copies of Death and the Schoolboy, the first instalment of the DATS Trilogy.
To quote Mark Coker, the founder of Smashwords, I had an ‘invisible book’ on my hands. In other words, one which no one, other than the few people who had bought it, knew about and one which was destined to remain that way unless drastic action was taken (or The Hand of God stepped in to intervene, of course). Oh, and it was worse than that because I actually had three invisible books on my hands!
Looking around at other book covers on the web, I finally realised that despite their wonderful quirky charm, my covers were well, amateurish, to say the least, a problem which was compounded when they were viewed in thumbnail size.
So, I turned to the illustrations done for The Lucius Chronicles by New Zealand cartoonist extraordinaire, Eugene Georgiades, and selected one stand-out picture for each of the three books in the DATS Trilogy, keeping the same overall styling of black and gold, but tweaking it to make it stand out better, especially when viewed as a thumbnail.
I hope that you’ll agree with me, that the new covers are far more impactful than the originals, even though it pains me to say so.
But that’s not all…
Having changed the covers, I followed the advice given in Mark Coker’s book, The Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success, and amended the description for Death and the Schoolboy, to make it more punchy than it was before, checked the category listings for the entire trilogy, to ensure that the books were in the most appropriate place on the site and then made Death and the Schoolboy available for FREE on Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, iBooks and Kobo — it’s priced at $0.99 on Amazon, because it doesn’t list free books, yet.
So now, potential readers can check out the first part of the DATS Trilogy, entirely risk free and without having to spend anything at all, in order to enjoy it!
It took a fair old while to upload all of the new book covers and descriptions to the many different places that the DATS Trilogy is mentioned on the web, and some of the changes are probably still filtering through even now, but I’m hopeful that it is a change for the better and will be worth it in the long run. If not, then I’ll have to consider bringing in outside help in the form of a professional cover designer and copywriter, to revise the whole look and feel of the DATS Trilogy.
But then, that’s the beauty of ebook publishing. You can make as many changes as you want, when you want, until you finally hit the sweet spot and your wonderful book takes off… and I am absolutely convinced that the DATS Trilogy is a wonderful series of books, which deserves to be enjoyed, either individually or all together in The Lucius Chronicles, by a multitude of people, both young and old.
Of course, dear reader, word of mouth is still the strongest marketing tool in the world, so now that you know about the new covers for the DATS Trilogy, please do go out and spread the word!
On a serious note, I would be extremely interested to hear what you think about the new covers (and the old ones, for that matter), so if you would like to comment, then please either do so below or drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org