Illustrated Covers For Romance Novels

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April 7, 2020 by Mod

A radical shift has occurred over the past couple of years in romance publishing (including YA romance) with regards to the way contemporary romance is being branded. Where previously illustrated covers were mostly reserved for rather chaste “chick-lit” – a usually slightly more “literary” twist on romance novels aimed at young professional women – now illustrated covers are popping up on the covers of mainstream contemporary romance, even that which leans decidedly into the hot and explicit category.

39854434Take FIX HER UP by Tessa Bailey with its very cute and rather innocent looking cover. I read a review that claimed it had “some of the most explicit sex I have ever read on the page”. Of course this made me buy it and heck, that reviewer is not wrong!

Illustrated covers are the latest big trend and it doesn’t look like this will change soon. What does this mean for indie authors? Suddenly the affordable old standard stock photographic covers are looking passé and a bit tired. While I think they’re still perfectly acceptable for erotica, paranormal and sci-fi romance, if you’re writing indie contemporary or YA romance what are your options if you want a more updated look?

lassoHere at Cover Your Dreams we try to stay abreast of trends in cover designs, and want to offer the latest looks while still keeping to our budget minded prices. The original illustrations used on covers like FIX HER UP cost anywhere from $500 and up. They’re just not economical for many indie authors.

This is where stock illustrations come in. Recently we’ve put together a few samples of unique and attractive covers using stock illustrations. By manipulating these images we can make the covers evocative of your story while still fitting current trends.  How to Lasso a Billionaire, by Katharine Sadler is one example. The below three are both examples and available to purchase as premade covers ($69 with your title, author name and tagline added. Other alterations are extra). If you’d like to know more about illustrated covers please get in touch by emailing or with the contact form.

SAMPLE ILLUSTRATED COVER 1 sample illustated3 sample illustated2


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