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The author says:

BODYSWITCH Multi-racial split personality thriller appealing to fans of Dean Koontz, Clive Barker. Tagline: ‘If you think your body belongs to you – think again’.

Cemetery by night


Nathan says:

Hmm.  Sort of like the last cover featured here, we could talk about font choices and layout and contrast… But before that, we need to talk about the overall concept.  Because this cover and that description don’t seem to go together.  This cover art is perfect for a boogedy-boogedy spooky story; that’s not what your description says at all.  Even if this is more of a supernatural story than your one-line description suggests, it still looks like a “haunted ruin” story, not a “split personality/possession” story.

I think before we can help you fine-tune your vision, you need to start with a different vision.

(Side note: Better remove the original metadata from the stock image.  When I posted the cover here, the title came up as “Cemetery by night,” with a caption of “Old cemetery in a foggy full moon night.”)


  1. Hmmm… another “needs more information” cover. As the man says, your stock photo mostly brings to mind a haunting rather than a possession or body time-sharing arrangement. From your description, I take it this is a story about someone of one race getting his mind put in the body of someone with a different race and having to work out some arrangement with his cohabitant? (e.g. A black guy gets his mind uploaded into a white guy’s brain while the white guy’s mind is still there, and then the two minds are constantly bickering in a running internal dialogue as they struggle for control of the body? I know people come in more colors than just black and white, but is that something like your general plot here?)

    If that is your general plot, you might want to rework the title as well as the picture. A portrait shot with a split face (half the person of one race and half the person of the other) is a fairly obvious direction to go here. As for the title, Bodyswitch suggests what TV Tropes calls a Freaky Friday Flip, but your story sounds more like Grand Theft Me or even Many Spirits Inside of One. If the trope in play in your story is one of the latter two, I’d suggest a title like Multiple Me or My Racial Identities or The Other, Other Race or the like; be inventive.

    If, on the other hand, this is more of a Demonic Possession story (certainly an appropriate topic to appeal to Clive Barker’s fans), a graveyard is not a bad setting to put on your cover, but we need to see more of the person being haunted and possessed and the racial spirit(s) doing the haunting and possessing; we need more characters on the cover. Depending on the origins of the spirit(s) in question, some overtly religious/magical symbols prominently displayed might be appropriate too: crosses or pentagrams or hexagrams, things like that. Give us some idea which general worldview applies to this story.

    In short, your critics and readers would both like some more grist for their mills; tell us a little bit more about this story, both on your cover and in your description.

  2. So can I complain about the tagline? It basically tells us “There is body swapping in this book.” But…the title is “Bodyswitch.” The tagline tells us nothing that the title doesn’t already.

  3. Because ‘Bodyswitch’ is a word that has been made for this novel (as opposed to ‘Body switch’) I am having a hard time reading it.

    After looking at it for some time, My brain has decided that your title is Bodys Witch. The tagline even confirms it for me, you think your body belongs to you? No, because it belongs to the Bodys Witch!

    To be fair that is a lot better than what I saw in the thumbnail originally, which made me jump over here faster than the internet would allow. I read it as Boy Switch (a book I’d be much more likely to read admittedly).

    Oh advise! Right. Forgot.

    If you put the Body in one colour, and switch in a slightly different shade of that colour I sure bet it would be easier to read. ^_^

    1. Actually, Waffles, it occurs to me that putting “Body” and “Switch” in contrasting colors, rather than just slightly different shades, could be a way to emphasize the theme of duality and multi-raciality. But I don’t know which two colors would work best — it might be necessary to also add a vertical line separating two different background colors. Maybe just white text on black and black text on white?

  4. I agree absolutely. There’s not too much point in criticizing the art since the art is evidently such a mismatch with the novel. I’ll have to second Nathan’s suggestion that you start from scratch with an entirely new concept.

  5. You know what this book’s premise reminded me of? The John Travolta and Nicolas Cage film Face/Off. Why not do a cover concept similar to that film’s poster? Don’t rip it off or anything, but something similar would convey what you’re trying to put forth much better, I think.

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