J.B. Simmons got their new book cover by running a design contest:
ICONIC cover for YA fantasy, THE BLUE TOWER -- PLUS win 4 one-on-one projects to complete the series
Check out J.B. Simmons's Book cover contest…
The Blue Tower
J.B. Simmons lives and writes outside Washington, D.C. He is the author of seven books and countless legal briefs. His acclaimed Unbound trilogy tells the story of a rich kid from Manhattan with nightmares of a dragon and the world ending in 2066. Learn more at www.jbsimmons.com.
Cipher awakes at the base of the Blue Tower with no memories of his former life. He discovers that he is not alone. Dozens of boys and girls fill the Blue Tower, and they must compete in a vast battleground, the Scouring, against four other towers—Red, Green, Yellow, and Black—each with its own rules and powers. In his first Scouring, Cipher captures Emma, a girl from Yellow, whose memories from Victorian England move Cipher to uncover his own past. He must learn who he was before he can figure out why he’s here…and how to get out.
YA and fantasy readers -- will appeal to fans of Divergent, The Giver, and Harry Potter.
Book cover type
OVERALL GOAL: A striking, iconic image of the Blue Tower that grabs the eye and will not be forgotten. FIVE BOOKS: The winner of this contest will get four one-on-one projects, for at least $100 each, soon after this competition -- for the next four books in the series. The cover of The Blue Tower should be in a style and format that can be followed for all five book covers in the series, so that they fit together (same fonts, style, etc). The other books will be for the other towers: Red, Green, Yellow, and Black. COVER: The cover should be iconic and instantly recognizable, even in a small ebook thumbnail image. Obviously, the key color scheme should be blue, but open to ideas on black v. white font and/or background. The overall tone could hint at lurking danger with a note of optimism. Some subtle hint of fantasy and magical powers could also be cool. (Spoiler: in the Blue Tower, Cipher learns to control the wind and the air.) I've attached a range of images and covers that catch aspects of the style I'd like. If you go with a more intricate/illustrated look (not required), note that the tower is a round column of stone, ten times as tall as it is wide, thinner at the top than the bottom, and with no turrets and a glass walls in a few places. It's not really medieval; it's more magical like Isengard from Lord of the Rings. The font of "THE BLUE TOWER" should be large and pop--something unique and creative would be great. The cover should also include "The Five Towers, Book One" and the author's name, "J.B. Simmons". Here are a few excerpts from the book describing the Blue Tower: "The tower’s wall is perfectly smooth until it meets rough stones far below. Waves crash into the black rock, sending sprays of white into the sky. I look to both sides and see jagged cliffs as the shore stretches as far as I can see. A few shrubs and small trees cling to the coast. There’s no other sign of life. I twist onto my back to look up. More smooth stone going up and up until the tower ends in a point in the sky. It is like a tube, thicker at the bottom and ten times as high as it is wide. The weight of all this fills me with a smallness, a stillness, as I lay there, halfway up a tower, stuck between the sea and the sky." For context, here is an excerpt briefly describing the other four towers (which will each have its own book cover in the series): "There are four spires rising high in the sky. They are majestic, in entirely different ways: closest to the left is a castle glimmering like yellow crystal, beside it is an immense green tree with intricate ropes and wooden platforms scattered through its branches, then a red keep rising from a rocky peak, and last, closest to the right, is a thin round black tower that looks like an iron pole. The towers are close together, surrounding a paved space enclosed in a high wall. The land beyond each of the other towers extends as far as I can see." BACK: The text of the back blurb is above. SIZE: The book will be paperback, 5.25 X 8 inches, and the spine should fit a book of about 300 pages.
What to avoid
No turrets. No lightning.
It all began with a design brief.
A quick, interactive guide helped them understand their design style and captured exactly what they needed in their book cover.
Designers across the globe delivered design magic.
J.B. Simmons collaborated with designers to refine their ideas
When design entries come in, you can rate them so designers know what you’re looking for in your logo design.
99designs has great collaboration tools so you can pinpoint and capture your ideas
And then… they selected a winner!
It was a real pleasure to work with 88dsgnr! He understood at once what I was looking for, proposed an absolutely beautiful design and was very quick and thorough with the few corrections I had. Thanks a lot, 88dsgnr!
Along the way, they met lots of talented designers…
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