I got an email today from Viking about an interesting development in the publishing of Elizabeth Gilbert's (author of Eat, Pray, Love) new novel, The Signature of All Things. From tomorrow morning through Sunday, readers get to vote via Gilbert's Facebook page for which cover they'd like to see on her new book!
The Signature of All Things is "an epic novel of love, ambition, and 19th century botanical exploration," and to be quite honest, I'm rather looking forward to it! The main character is a female scientist, and the title hints at the doctrine of signatures, the idea that God made things in nature look like body parts in order to indicate what they should be used for. It sounds right up my alley, to be honest!
USA Today reports that while Gilbert does have a favorite, she's not telling what it is. Personally, I'm going to be voting for the purple cover. And I'll be curious to see how many people vote on the cover--is this something that's going to be a worthwhile business practice for publishers to drum up publicity for new books? Certainly, it's a new tactic right now, and obviously, I'm covering this first foray into letting social media make a decision, so it seems to be working for now. Will this strategy work long term? I'm not sure, but I suspect novelty will have more to do with this than anything else.
The Signature of All Things will be released 1 October 2013.