A post for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group
I recently read The Rosie Effect, a novel by Graeme Simsion. Its hero Don has Asperger syndrome, a psychological condition that makes it necessary for him to have a very orderly life: all activities are scheduled, all chores belong to the prearranged to-do lists, all meals adhere to the weekly menus (orange juice on Fridays), etc.
I have Asperger too, although to a lesser degree than Don. I crave order in my life as well, and this craving pushed me into an interesting writing-related project.
Over the last few years, more than a dozen of my short stories were published in various magazines. As I retain the rights to these stories, I decided to make them available to my readers on Wattpad, where each story can have its own cover. I scoured the Internet for the best free images and created a cover for each story.
After I posted all the stories on Wattpad, I looked at their covers, and a doubting worm started squirming in my head. The covers looked too different, the fonts and styles all over the place. To satisfy my Asperger-driven need for order, I decided to change all the covers, to make them conform to a certain stylistic standard. Simultaneously, such a uniformity would create my own ‘writer’s brand’ on Wattpad, at least in theory.
I reused the same images as before but I designed the covers differently. On all the new covers, the title is below the image, the author’s name above the image, and all the covers have a frame. I used the same font for the author’s name everywhere and another font for the titles.
The covers still look ‘home-made’. It’s clear no professional artists or cover designer has ever touched them, but at least they are unique, exclusively mine. Nobody’s covers look like them. Is it bad? Is it okay? Did I go overboard with this project? Should the covers have more of a variety? After all, the stories don’t belong to the same series or even to the same genre. Should the covers have a distinctive professional quality? After all, I’m not selling them.
To judge, you can see all the covers on my special board on Pinterest.
For those curious enough to read, the stories themselves are here.