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Make sure you can Judge a Book by its Cover


When a person picks up a book to read, they are engaging in a silent conversation between the subconscious and the item in hand. Because the conversation may last only a few seconds, many people are not even aware that it has actually taken place. Even though this conversation has a tendency to be completely subconscious, it is the feeling associated with the situation that resonates throughout a person’s being.

Have you ever wondered why some books strike such a deep chord while other books simply fall of your radar? People are naturally perceptive, even if they may not be completely aware of all the things being analyzed. There are many aspects of a book that affect how it is portrayed well before the first page is turned.

When we pick up a book, the type of paper, the quality of the binding, the feel of the book, the color, and even the smells coming from it fall under the scrutiny of our senses. Hopefully, our interpretation of the book’s nature will be complimentary to the ideas that the author is trying to share.

It is important for us to thoroughly understand the relationship between a book’s internal information and its physical appearance. Once we have an idea on how sensory and visual factors work together, we will have the foundation necessary to fashion strong emotional connections that will last forever.

Emotional Representation

There is no denying the fact that when people care about something, they are more apt to pay attention, understand, and absorb the information being presented. When the visual medium truly embodies the ideas contained within, it serves as a gateway for an emotional connection. This type of emotional information is successfully created when everything about the book continuously engages the reader. Every detail must be examined from font size to paper texture.

Each element of the book should be carefully chosen for every story. When time and energy go into making the physical form and the idea merge, a distinctive emotional relationship emerges. Taking the time to choose a font, which fits the tone of the story, pictures that meet the need of the story, and a cover that promises the worth of the story, are all extra steps that will help combine visual components and sensory experiences into a single emotional journey.

These special relationships, aid the reader in understanding the intention of the writer by providing volumes of unspoken information. This sensory information makes the read more engaging and interactive.

Lack of Emotion

Books came into existence because people needed a reliable way to not only get thoughts to others, but to preserve the ideas through the passage of time. Even though book printing technology has changed over the years, there is still an inherent problem in the system. Traditionally, authors rely on publishers to get the written word into a format that is accessible. These publishing companies have total control over the aesthetics of the book. They determine the paper quality, the font, cover design, the type of binding, and any other typographic detail you can possibly imagine.

On one hand, this may be alright with the author as long as the ideas are published. On the other hand, if the publishing company does not dedicate resources to fine tuning the physical details with the written concepts, the author may find that no one fully grasps the ideas and emotions being conveyed.  With money and time almost always being an issue, books get published in a set style, whether or not it matches the tone. This causes a barrier for the information as the written ideas are not adequately reflected with the final product.

Is there anything worse than an author’s thoughts being present in a low quality book with poor typesetting and cheap paper? The answer varies. With internet becoming a major source of communication between individuals all over the world, more and more people are doing their reading online. EBooks are a great idea in theory, but they can be just as detrimental to the transfer of information. Books are displayed in a set format, often with identical typesetting for uniformity. This makes it impossible for the true nature of the ideas to connect with the reader. The personality of each story is completely disregarded as every thought and idea from thousands of authors, is presented in exactly the same light. The signals that should indicate that this particular story is worth picking up, and reading are no longer in existence.

The author is slowly being forgotten as time goes by. Thus, the print and online systems are both serving as a barrier in the flow of information.

Muddled and Lost Ideas

Imagine you have found a book that contains information very interesting to you. You pick up the book and start to read only to realize that it feels very clumsy in your hands. Every time you turn the page; you run the risk of being jarred by ill-placed photos and drawings. The typesetting makes the entire book a purely uncomfortable read. Would you ever read the book again?

Chances are you probably will not recommend the book to anyone or pick it up again. These types of interactions can quickly muddle the author’s intention as the reader becomes distracted by poor publishing and design. Even though the data being relayed is highly accurate and informative, it becomes harder to take the ideas with any seriousness or wonder. The ever important emotional relationship is being severed by a communication barrier. In some cases, this barrier can be so noticeable that readers may put the book down early and never make it all the way through. This poor treatment of a person’s ideas and thoughts should be considered completely unacceptable.

Importance of Emotional Systems

The largest barrier with idea sharing is getting your exact point across to another person without interference. This would not be a problem if we could simply send out ideas to be absorbed by others. Because this is not possible, we have communication systems in place to facilitate the spread of thoughts and ideas. Unfortunately, the very systems we have in place to ensure smooth communication are conversely failing at their intended purpose. In more cases than not, the systems are acting as a barrier between the information being presented and the intended recipients.

The intention of this article is not to glorify one medium over another, but to get the point across that you should always consider the best method available to communicate a particular author’s point of view. There is more than getting data spread in a quick, safe, and efficient manner. The systems we have available should make the consumer care about what the author is offering. Emotional experiences are very subjective and should vary from story to story.

You cannot have a “one shoe fits all” mentality because each project should be treated as a unique and important entity in its own right. A book is simply one of the many tools used to transfer ideas. It is the information contained within the pages that should make a connection with the audience. The stronger the emotional connection between the data and the reader, the more likely the ideas will not be forgotten or lost over time. In order to see lasting and positive changes within the current information systems, we should begin focusing on how things make a person feel.


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