Monday, December 5, 2011

Carcosa Cover - Problem and Solution

Just got the Carcosa cover samples that were sent Thursday.

Two notes: The green moon and stars will be a part of the cover, they just aren't part of these samples. And if these covers are accurate, this book will be a slight touch thicker than the Grindhouse box.

Anyway... I was told at the beginning of last week that delivery of Carcosa and Isle of the Unknown would happen today, the 5th. But on Thursday I was alerted to a problem...

It seems the metallic foil wasn't bonding to the cover material. In this first pic, you can see what we were going for, and how the problems would make the book unworthy of being sold:

The printer even tested pressing a different foil underneath first, hoping the metallic foil would stick to that. The results were better, but not near good enough:

Their suggested fix was the following material:

The printer says this has bonded as it is supposed to, and I've just thumbed it fairly vigorously and it's on there tight. You're going to have to abuse the book a bit to get that to start peeling, I think.

Note that aside from the added green foil (which will likewise now be non-metallic), this is the cover. No title, no marketing blah blah. There will be a thin b&w wrap with all that jazz so it's identifiable on a store shelf (and in distributor warehouses!).

(note that the cover silhouette, in addition to echoing the original edition's, is the same image as the book's frontispiece, seen here.)

This situation might be a happy accident. My intention for the book was to look fancy-dignified, not fancy-gaudy (or at all like a typical RPG book for that matter). Using the metallic foil was shinier and perhaps "more sci-fi," but maybe it was a bit too much flash.

Everything might be delivered at the end of this week, or perhaps the very beginning of next. phew.


  1. I do think the new version looks better, certainly more dignified, and more professional too.

  2. Since I was asked about it elsewhere, I want to mention that the cover material is darker without a flash going off directly above it.

  3. The frontispiece was not a suitable image to form a silhouette from and Im amazed that you tried. A silhouette needs its own design. Geoffrey's original was better. I see what you were trying to do with the original foil, it looks radioactive, pity about the rubbing. The compromise ends up looking like a paw print. If its not too late use a sharpened version of Geoffrey's original.

  4. As much as I like shiny things, I agree that the matte cover looks better in that it looks more like well-made books really used to look.

  5. I cannot overstate how much I prefer the non-foil version. It reminds me of my William Hope Hodgson library editions, whereas the metallic foil brought to mind the ugly, overwrought Marvel Comics covers of the early 90's.

  6. I agree that the actual cover looks better than the intended cover. :)

  7. The Nightshade editions of WHH's work are what gave me the idea to do metallic foil in the first place...

    ah well :)

  8. Hahaha. I just looked and realized they are, in fact, foil. Apparently so is my memory.

  9. That color does looks horribly ugly. I don't have any constructive to ad but you should propably get better photos up if it's effect of camera flash.