Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover

… and still, we all do it, right? I’m not the exception to the rule either. Often I catch myself judging a person I don’t know because I don’t like her jacket. But I don’t know what happened to her that her jacket looks as ragged as it does.

But let’s stay within the literary world. Like so many other writers and readers, I love spending time in bookstores. I browse through the shelves and aisles, and occasionally I pick one, turn it around and start reading the blurb on the back.

My eyes fly over the shelves, and once in a while, they are caught by a particularly attractive and intriguing book cover. If I don’t like the cover, I don’t even bother reading a blurb, means I might miss a few good books, just because my eye isn’t attracted to the books’ cover.

Over the years I saw a few very interesting and eye-catching covers, and by a couple, I was quite fascinated.

Now, these five here, are only a few that impressed me and my eye in particular. To some of you, they might be weird, sad or even boring. This blog post and these covers are my taste.

Picture courtesy of: http://www.google.com

 

Cover designer: Jim Tierney

I love how the designer mixes color and the trace of antique and ancient. It’s not often we discover a new book with an ‘old’ cover.

 

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of: http://lithub.com/the-64-best-book-covers-of-2017/

 

Cover designer: Peter Mendelsund

I love the colorful simplicity of the book cover. It seems to be one simple compass needle, but I was drawn in when I saw this cover.

 

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of: https://litreactor.com/columns/the-best-horror-book-covers-ever

 

Designer team:

Bob Giusti (illustration)
Amy Hill (lettering)

This I call a perfect symbiosis between illustration and lettering. It can’t get any simpler than this, any darker, any more impressive – and any scarier.

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of: http://lithub.com/the-60-best-book-covers-of-2016-as-chosen-by-designers/

 

Designer: Na Kim

I cannot even tell whether this book cover is ‘intriguing’ or repelling… but it definitely is fascinating. And in combination with this book title it has a lot to say.

 

 

 

 

 

Picture courtesy of: http://www.pinterest.com

 

Cover designer: Anne Jordan

The cover caught my eye immediately. Why would a reader and writer like me not be intrigued by a turning page? I briefly looked at the book and found that I had to add it to my growing pile of books I need to read.

 

 

 

Are there covers you like? And I know, I got a lot to learn and many people to meet, cover designers amongst them. Who do you know, being a cover designer or illustrator and designed the perfect cover for your book?

Or what book cover do you particularly love?

Creativity at Starbucks

Picture courtesy of: http://www.starbucks.com/menu/drinks/frappuccino-blended-beverages
Picture courtesy of: http://www.starbucks.com/menu/drinks/frappuccino-blended-beverages

 

 

Why is working at Starbucks positive to people’s creativity?

 

This blog post is the result of intense personal field research. And I, of course, wonder if I’m the only writer who has made the same experiences.

 

When I go to Starbucks (which isn’t ever too often, because I think their coffee and the food is significantly overpriced) I see young students, older students, graphic designers, painters, drawers, fashion designers, readers and, of course, writers.

 

I talked to quite some of them and very often got the same answer to my question: aren’t you disturbed or bothered by the sound of the coffee machines, the voices, the distraction, the noise? – No, in fact, at every other place all the background sound bothers me, but not at Starbucks.

 

How come?

 

While writing this blog post, I, in fact, am sitting in Nashville-Green Hills Mall Starbucks and watching people carefully. Next to me on the table is a Venti Mocha Frappuccino (with Whipped Cream of course) and I’m sipping my way through this blog post.

 

On my left, just by the wall, there’s a young man, designing T-Shirts. On my left, there’s a young girl, maybe close to twenty, seemingly to get homework done. (Maybe she’s, in fact, chatting with her boyfriend, I can’t tell for sure, but her smile tells me a lot) It is 12:10 pm and there aren’t many people, but it seems everyone in here is either reading or typing, and I’m having tons of fun watching people…

 

As much fun as this all seems it doesn’t necessarily satisfy my curiosity: Why do people seem to be so creative at Starbucks? Is it the easy access to excellent (unusual) coffee? Is it the feeling to share this creativity with others, being as hard to distract by noise? (Unless it’s the screaming and crying of pretty annoying little children) If misbehaved kids are cruising around, it seems quite obvious: they are an unwelcome distraction and many of the Starbucks at home- creative artists will pack up and disappear. Or, and that’s part of what makes me think: can it be that Creativity is contagious? Do people feel creativity, or catch a wave of creativity and surf on it?

I’m not even sure I can do that. With me, either creativity is on, or off, but I cannot “find a wave” of it and ride on it. Maybe others can.

 

Do I feel more creative at Starbucks? Sometimes I am. (As can easily be seen by this blog post) But there are other days, I need to leave. It strongly depends on my mood. But I also have to admit: Most of the time I am quite creative at Starbucks, probably because I’ve hardly ever got time to sit down and get some writing done in a Starbucks. Unless it was for creative’s sake, like in this particular blog post related field research.

 

Talking about this particular research: It has cost me around $40 to properly and carefully watch people at different Starbucks spots and give out a result I can stand behind after my best knowledge and belief.

 

Besides: Their Mocha Frappuccino is just a drink for Gods. (Which makes me ask myself why I do get chocolate decoration onto the whipped cream when ordering one in California, but not when I have one in Nashville – or New York? But that’s of course only a detail.)

 

Now, please help me out: are you particularly creative at Starbucks? And if yes, have you ever found out why that is? Are there other places you are unusually creative at? Thanks for letting us know.

 

(written, January 5, 2016, Mall at Green Hills, Nashville, Tennessee – Aurora Jean Alexander)