My editor called me the other day about the simple, dignified cover art I'd requested, and told me what they had in mind for the novel. Their idea is not simple, and judging by the description, probably not real dignified, either. Did I call that one right, or what?
The editor and the production people do want me to be happy about the cover art, but they also have to sell their product. Guess what takes priority. Also, I know I'm too close to this novel, in an over-protective, snarling mother tiger baring fangs sense. Pretty much nothing is going to make me happy. I told the editor this and asked her to do whatever they think is best.
That ends my involvement in the production of this novel.
I think authors should be included in the production process, because we know the novel better than anyone on the publishing side, but I also think there are times when we need to step to the sidelines. Not every author is comfortable with letting go like this, so this is a personal call.
I know this particular novel is one of the best books I've written. A lot of readers are waiting for it. Whatever ends up on the cover won't change what I wrote, or what they read. It might affect my new reader sales, it might not. Who can say? Either way, this time, I'm staying out of it.