Christian Writing Critique the title and cover of my next book

paulchernoch

Senior Member
May 19, 2005
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I just published a nonfiction book this summer (Peace, like Solomon Never Knew). As exhausted as I was, I felt that there were ideas that I could have expanded on. I decided to research and write an article on the subject, which is ideas I have about the Plagues on Egypt and the Ten Commandments. Two months later, I just completed a first draft of another book! It is short - just 100 pages at 6x9" Trade size - but after I flesh it out with end notes and extra clarifications, I imagine it should grow to about 130 pages. This is by far the fastest I have ever churned out a title. I want to encourage the rest of you that patience and practice do pay off. My earliest books took 3+ years to write.

In the past, I designed my own covers and would spend weeks of evenings slaving over them, and still the results were questionable. This time I used a canned template from Canva.com and had a cover in a half hour. Tell me what you think.

As for the title, does it grab your attention? The thesis is that the Plagues on Egypt and the Ten Commandments taken in pairs define God's process of progressive judgment. Successive empires or eras in history break God's laws and he punishes them with ever increasing severity. Each judgment is targeted towards the corresponding Commandment to reinforce that all his laws are important and each will be judged. The orderliness makes it apparent that it is not random; there is a miraculous, divine plan behind it that is evident in history.

Title: Plague, Precept, Prophet, Peace
Cover:
IMG_0008.png
 
May 24, 2017
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686
Congratulations! You are proof that practice makes more proficient even if perfection is unreachable.
You got the colour scheme just right! Black and yellow have been associated with pandemic warning signs for all of my life. If your audience is academics, then the subtitle is good. For me, a non academic, I found too many details in it. Asking a question like "What do the Ten Commandments have to do with human history and the Egyptian plague in Exodus?" seems more approachable to me.
Two more suggestions to take or leave as you wish.
Make your commas slightly smaller.
Add a fly somewhere. A gnat.
 

paulchernoch

Senior Member
May 19, 2005
960
265
Nicola, Thanks for the tip. I came up with the subtitle in a hurry. I would like a larger audience, so I will ponder how to change the wording. A fly? Yes, very icky and on point. Maybe one with green eyes, to add a bit of color to grab attention.
 
Last edited:
Oct 15, 2022
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Congratulations! You are proof that practice makes more proficient even if perfection is unreachable.
You got the colour scheme just right! Black and yellow have been associated with pandemic warning signs for all of my life. If your audience is academics, then the subtitle is good. For me, a non academic, I found too many details in it. Asking a question like "What do the Ten Commandments have to do with human history and the Egyptian plague in Exodus?" seems more approachable to me.
Two more suggestions to take or leave as you wish.
Make your commas slightly smaller.
Add a fly somewhere. A gnat.
I agree completely with Ms. Nicola's feedback. I thought the use of black and yellow like "caution" tape was excellent. Instead of a fly, maybe a locust?
 

paulchernoch

Senior Member
May 19, 2005
960
265
Thanks all. It never even occurred to me that the color scheme was like caution tape. That was in the template. Serendipitous. One vote for locusts. So many icky bugs to choose from...
 

lynnmosher

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 21, 2007
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4,817
I'm not real fond of the space at the top. It looks off balance to me. The large font size of the title is a little jarring. Maybe it's just me.
 

paulchernoch

Senior Member
May 19, 2005
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265
Lynn: I was looking for jarring. Maybe found too much of it. It is tempting to put an image in the blank space to balance it out.
 
Jul 15, 2016
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I hate to disagree, but I find that cover a complete turn off. Sorry, but I just don't think it will sell many copies, but I hope I'm wrong and you sell a million copies! So, good luck!
 

paulchernoch

Senior Member
May 19, 2005
960
265
Jeff - I was looking for a good silhouette but all I found were cartoonish hoppers. Maybe I should keep looking.
 

paulchernoch

Senior Member
May 19, 2005
960
265
I hate to disagree, but I find that cover a complete turn off. Sorry, but I just don't think it will sell many copies, but I hope I'm wrong and you sell a million copies! So, good luck!
My, my. One of the covers I created all by myself without the benefit of a design template was featured years ago on a website called bookcoversthatsuck.com. Perhaps my taste in templates is as bad as my artistic skills.
 
Aug 10, 2013
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Technically, I think it was a plague of locusts, which are not quite the same as grasshoppers. And I can't tell which Paul used, but it looks to me like a locust.
 

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