This week’s blog reassures publishing marketers that dust jackets are as important as ever and sighs wistfully at the thought of defining the Ted Dawe brand.


‘My grandmother looked at me with a fierce look on her face. “What does that word mean, Ted?” “Oh that? It means silly person. I get called it all the time at school.” The other three exchanged looks; it was as though they didn’t believe me. “You can take back the C, the U and N and build something else.’


If you can’t say anything nice…

This extract from a recent interview with Ted Dawe author of the alleged teen swear-fest “Into the River” gives a pretty clear indication of where he stands on the use of just about every rude word going. For the record, “Into the River is SO rude, it has been banned in, wait for it….., New Zealand, which is probably about as damaging to Dawe as Mike Reid’s Partridge-lite refusal to play ‘Relax!’ on Radio One was to the Frankies. Anyway, we’ll refrain from entering that particular debate in this blog because our interest is much more in the opportunity it provided his publisher and their marketing team at Longacre.


The author is the brand

It’s no secret that despite marketing innovations in digital sampling, delivery and communications the dust jacket still remains the focus of most publishing marketers (and if our recent research is anything to go by that’s absolutely correct, as long as the thinking that goes behind the cover is consistent with the strategy that drives sales efforts, advertising development, PR and media planning). And the more progressive of those marketers have for some time regarded authors themselves as brands whose audience, appeal and values should be understood, captured and articulated through every point of consumer contact, including the cover.


A gift from the gods

So we at Muse, as a business in the business of defining author brands ourselves could only imagine how the lucky agency of choice must have rubbed their hands in glee at a client brief that probably went something along the lines of,

“We’ve got a new author brief.

He writes for teenagers.

And he swears a lot.

Is there anything you can do with that?”

Manna from heaven, surely?


See for yourself

And what, we hear you ask, was the result. Here it is in the article itself. Let us know if you think the design hit the mark. And if you’d like to see an example of how we approach author brands you can you can find out more here or contact us with any questions here.