Diversity versus brand image – the writer’s dilemma

Quite a few people have been surprised by the diversity of material I have written, from thrillers, spiritual adventure, YA SF/fantasy and children’s books to non-fiction.


Apart from romance (which I quite fancy tackling maybe using a female pseudonym), I have found this to be a perfectly natural process although I blow hot and cold as to whether I should be creating a ‘brand’ image.

The counter argument seems to be that if you write a series of books you should be presenting a unified whole, particularly when it comes to book covers. I can see a certain logic in using the same or similar design style, same font for your name and the same ‘atmosphere’. This is bound to appeal to a certain kind of reader but could leave other readers cold.

By designing very different covers for my very different books (although three can be lumped together under the thriller category) I suppose I was attempting to entice a broader readership base.

With this in mind I thought I should set up a mini opinion poll. I have designed two alternative covers for my thriller series featuring Mike Delaney.


Ex US government assassin and Hong Kong Police martial arts enforcer Mike Delaney is kicked out of the force on a trumped up charge along with his partner Bob Messenge. Delaney drops out and joins a reclusive esoteric monastic brotherhood while Messenger forms confess-confess.com – a global crime busting website where ordinary people fight back against injustice, each with their own code name. Delaney falls in love, leaves the monastery and marries. One year later his investigative journalist wife is brutally murdered by a contract serial killer known as ‘The Priest’. She is one of many. Delaney vows to track down ‘The Priest’. He discovers his wife was about to expose a global plot known asThe Renaissance Project involving the richest and most powerful people on the planet who pay huge sums to attain true immortality. The ‘Priest’ is their tame assassin (but Lucius Gynt is not as tame as they think he is). On the confess-confess website Delaney’s code name is ‘The Monk’. His search for ‘The Priest’, and uncovering the labyrinthine Renaissance Project will test his skills to the limit and put his life on the line.

Even though I have only written the first book in the series, ‘The Immortality Plot’ with a second, ‘Good Girl Bad Girl’ pending beta feedback, I thought I would play around with the cover design.

I would love your comments. Just send me a message at: http://www.davidcallinan.com/WebPages/contact

Anyway, here are the three options. The first is the present cover:

A (current)

B - option one

B – option one

C - option 2

C – option 2


Could this be YOU?

I am seeking serious thriller fans to provide beta feedback prior to publication for my new Mike Delaney thriller ‘Good Girl Bad Girl’, the second in the series.

Delaney is asked by a Catholic nun in Ireland to track down her twin sister separated at birth. The twin was taken to the US by a reclusive millionaire couple but rebels and becomes one of the most dangerous women on the planet. A routine investigation spirals out of control with global consequences.

If you are interested contact me at the email address above and we can talk things through. This is not a review but a reader analysis and opinion survey.


About thebookwriters

Award winning novelist, author and musician. This blog is for all book lovers (especially thrillers and YA); writers and book reviewers.
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