Shelly Hickman

Ramblings and Whatnot

Vegas to Varanasi Cover Revamp


A few weeks ago I began writing the sequel to Vegas to Varanasi, which started me thinking about the cover image. I loved my first cover, despite the fact that as a reader, I typically turn away from those with photos of people on them, or I guess I should say, people’s faces. I have always preferred graphically designed images, which is pretty ironic considering my second and third books don’t fall into that category. I think one of the big turnoffs readers have with photos is that they want to imagine the characters the way they see them, not the way the author sees them, which is a valid argument. Though I thought the fella on the original V to V cover was a hottie, and very much fit the description of him in the book, even I have to admit he isn’t what I envisioned as I was writing. One reader who left an otherwise kind review, shared that her only issue with the book was that she didn’t care for the image of the man on the cover because he wasn’t how she pictured him. Sure, that doesn’t have anything to do with the story itself, but it’s something we all think about as we read, and something authors must consider when selecting a cover.

Saying that, I was thinking about how I will need the cover for this sequel to aesthetically gel with the first book, and the best way to do that is to go with my natural preference for graphically designed covers. One of the things I did not like about my old cover is that it gave off a traditional romance feel, when V to V isn’t that kind of story. It’s definitely more “chick lit”. Like my first book Believe, I decided to tackle the design myself and was soon reminded how frustrating the task is because I’m so indecisive. I can agonize over a color or font choice ad nauseam, so I thank my sister author friends at Chick Lit Goddesses for all the helpful suggestions they offered about layout, color, and overall feel of the new cover. I even consulted hubby for his input as well, and tried to address all the points that came up. So without further ado, here is the newly designed cover for Vegas to Varanasi.

Just for the sake of discussion, what draws you to a book cover and what turns you off?

2 responses to “Vegas to Varanasi Cover Revamp”

  1. Patricia Mann Avatar
    Patricia Mann

    I love the new cover, Shelly! Your reasons for changing it make perfect sense and I wish I had thought about these things when I changed my cover to faces! I’m at a loss for what to do with the sequel cover now. So glad you’re writing a sequel to V to V – it’s a beautiful book with great characters and I can’t wait to see what happens next for all of them! 🙂


    1. Shelly Hickman Avatar
      Shelly Hickman

      Thank you, Patricia! I think your cover for “Is This All There Is?” works because it has more of an abstract feel to it, at least in my humble opinion. Unlike mine where the woman was staring right into the camera. LOL. But yes, you may have some difficulty with the cover for the sequel, but I have confidence in you. 🙂


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About Me

Las Vegas native, Computer Science teacher, and writer (when the mood strikes). Author of five novels – mostly romantic comedies – available on Amazon and Audible.


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