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Nominate the book cover for "The Military Guide"
Old 10-08-2010, 01:59 PM   #1
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Nominate the book cover for "The Military Guide"

As an engineer (and as my spouse will tell anyone) décor is usually the last thing on my mind. However every book has a cover and we have a certain amount of input to the publisher's selection.

So what should be on the cover? And should there be another B&W image on the inside title page?

My first impression is that the images should be non-denominational-- not specific to any one military service. No periscopes or gun barrels or aircraft. None of those horrible joint-purple agglomerations showing one of everything/everybody.

Maybe it shouldn't be occupational at all, unless it's part of a retirement ceremony. Maybe the cover should show the ER life that a veteran is about to start, not the career that they're finishing. As one major contributor has suggested, maybe it should be a Corona-style beach scene. Another contributor suggested "A group of military types cowering before the door of retirement fearing the goblins on the other side. Or, a gruff 4 star warning a group in uniforms against reading this book. Or hey, just bold print, 'What your CO does not want you to know!'" Maybe it should be a bunch of Jeff Bacon's "Broadside" military characters peering through a doorway to see what's on the other side. (Yes, Jeff may remember my spouse and I well enough to be interested.) Maybe instead of Uncle Sam saying "I want YOU!", he should be working a longboard.

Maybe it shouldn't be a photo or a cartoon but rather just a graphic-- a pile of coins & bills or a silhouette of a hammock lounger in front of an American flag.

EDIT: If you're thinking of a beach scene then it'll have to be extraordinarily creative to stand out from a couple of earlier nominations.

We'll gather up the top 5-10 images and poll the votes. If your contribution ends up in the book then you get to choose your favorite military charity for a royalty donation.

Pretend that you're back on active duty, walking past your local military exchange bookstore on your lunch hour. You're tired & sweaty (or cold), you're grumpy at the way the morning went, you're scrambling to run an errand before you grab some food, and you have another eight working hours ahead of you before you can go home tonight to see your family and relax a little before starting it all over again tomorrow morning. OBTW, you have the weekend duty and you're getting underway on Monday morning. Make sure the repairs & preps are done by Sunday night.

In the midst of this grim-faced chronically-fatigued squinty-eyed unhappiness, a book cover catches your eye and makes you stop to read the title. What does that cover image look like?
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Old 10-08-2010, 03:50 PM   #2
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You have some great ideas for the book cover Nords.

Since the title has the word 'guide' in it, you might want to consider a compass....or some type of map.


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Old 10-08-2010, 04:02 PM   #3
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You have some great ideas for the book cover Nords.

Since the title has the word 'guide' in it, you might want to consider a compass....or some type of map.



Excellent idea. Or how about something that somehow incorporates the various military branches?
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Old 10-08-2010, 04:14 PM   #4
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...The CO actually backfisted one of my chief petty officers (although he pulled it short before impact) and it was common for him to front-kick officers of the deck (although he did give them a kicking shield to hold up before he started)...The engineer used to wake up 3-4x/week with nightmares that would literally have him jumping around the stateroom punching at imaginary people.
you didn't happen to get an action shot of any of these did you?

i like the uncle same on a long board idea...
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Old 10-08-2010, 09:17 PM   #5
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I'm seeing a typical EXIT door (with the push bar at waist level). Hanging next to the door is a clipboard with a checklist. A walking foot is just entering the scene.
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Old 10-08-2010, 09:20 PM   #6
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Picture of a short timer's chain.
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Old 10-08-2010, 09:34 PM   #7
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Maybe a camo version of a cheesy retirement t-shirt (this one is from Cafepress):

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Old 10-08-2010, 11:21 PM   #8
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I'm sure you'll chose a great one! I am glad to think that it will make a difference in hopefully a lot of people's lives.
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Old 10-09-2010, 03:10 AM   #9
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Who is your intended audience? Is it people in the military now? interested in joining? Or something else?

In my experience in selling books through Amazon, people buying nonfiction books like books where the title (and picture on the cover) are really specific and help them solve some sort of problem or information need.

Like if someone wants to learn to clog dance, if I has a site on clog dancing and had a great book called Dancing the Night Away that was actually about clog dancing and had some kind of artsy cover with just text, it probably wouldn't sell that great. But if the book had clog dancing in the title and a picture of people clog dancing on the cover, it would sell much better.
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Old 10-09-2010, 08:32 AM   #10
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I think a collage of pictures of you in military mode and now in surfer mode .
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Old 10-09-2010, 08:40 AM   #11
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Lighthouse - suggests starting or ending a journey, safety, illumination.

Maze - suggests finding your way out of a trap.
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:27 AM   #12
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Image of someone wearing dog tags followed by same person wearing a Hawaiian lei.
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:30 AM   #13
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Show footsteps in the sand.

Edit add: Footprints in the sand.
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Old 10-09-2010, 02:22 PM   #14
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For the front cover, I really like your Jeff Bacon idea. Mutual promotion! I'm not suggesting this cartoon, but giving people an idea of what his work looks like:



On the back cover I think you should have two pictures of yourself, one in uniform accepting an award. One after retirement, with the surfboard. People like seeing the author.
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Old 10-09-2010, 02:41 PM   #15
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How about an opening door showing the back side of a figure holding a briefcase with pieces of paper sticking out? One would be $, the others represent the major issues in the book.

Meet with an art/advertising teacher at a local school to hold a contest to draw up the cover. The prize is one you submit to the publisher. You can't guarantee that the winner is chosen but if it is the student has something for their CV.
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Old 10-09-2010, 03:30 PM   #16
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Quote:
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I think a collage of pictures of you in military mode and now in surfer mode .
I am thinking...

What about a pic of you in surfer mode (jams, long hair, board, on the beach or on a wave)...with your uniform jacket on.
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Old 10-09-2010, 04:29 PM   #17
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You have some great ideas for the book cover Nords.

Since the title has the word 'guide' in it, you might want to consider a compass....or some type of map.


I agree with the compass theme. Even veterans could use a little 'direction' in retirement planning. Nords- you're a good man to put this together for such a great cause.
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Old 10-10-2010, 12:10 AM   #18
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How about a lookout?

Getty Images - Unsupported browser detected

or

The Lookout :: Images of Sailing Ships

I thought about a binnacle, but if you ain't Navy it don't click.
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Old 10-11-2010, 02:29 PM   #19
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Picture of a short timer's chain.
My first post was flip; sorry about that. I have been giving this some thought, and I believe that you should be looking for military related images that signify completion. I'm thinking pictures of piping someone over the side, casing the colors, something like that.
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Old 10-11-2010, 04:21 PM   #20
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just another thought.....
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