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Round 2: Vote for the LISM book cover

About a month ago you guys voted on a book cover image for my upcoming book, “Life In Student MInistry: Practical conversations on thriving in youth ministry,” due out from Youth Specialties/Zondervan in February 2011. You gave a lot of helpful feedback surrounding the conversational tone of the book and how the cover should resemble that. Based on that feedback, Zondervan drew up a couple other options for the book cover, which you can see and vote on below. One of these covers will be the final cover.

My opinion

I think the third cover with the frisbee is the strongest option. The concept attempts to call attention to a loved pastime of many youth leaders and youth (or maybe just me?), Frisbee golf. The sport carries the implication of meaningful conversations and interactions youth leaders can have with each other and with teenagers while playing the game. The coffee options are strong covers, but coffee cups on a cover have been done before and might come across as expected or even cliche. (Plus, how sweet would it be to actually have those blue frisbees printed up?! Hmm…)

Your vote

The poll closes on Thursday at midnight, so you have the next couple days to share which cover you think fits the book the best. Remember, this book is not just my ideas and thoughts. It’s a collective work of over 100 other youth workers who have given a voice to much of my content, asking different questions, giving other perspectives, and adding better ideas. I want this book to have a conversational tone. Which cover best reflects that?

Scroll to the bottom to see the poll. Or, if you’re viewing this in an email, you can vote here.

Some people have read my book already. Check out the endorsements that have come in so far from some of them.

Cover #1

Book 1

Cover #2

Book 2

Cover #3

Book 3



Posted on October 25, 2010

  • Carolyn

    ok, Tim…. I like the one with you sideways… being goofy with the glasses.. I would be more inclined to think people would pick up the book with this cover… The coffee cups and the frisbee are … ( sorry) ordinary.. not exciting enough to catch my eye and pick up… I would think it had something to do with a dog.. Although my young college student youth worker liked the #2 coffee cup, ok… but the one with you sideways…. would stop him midtracks walking through Borders to see what it was about…
    so I guess it is none of the above.. I am sad you dumped the sideways waldo guy (you) :) cover.

    • Thanks for the thoughts, Carolyn. A couple people have indicated your sentiments, as well. It's making me second-guess it all. :) I'm gonna talk with a couple people who know this stuff better than me and see what happens.

  • Eric

    I like the second one. The third one seems too basic and the first makes me think it's a book for senior adult living. Just my opinion tho.

  • There's no frisbee illustration in the book — it's purely an alternative illustration for conversation (and that I really like frisbee). :) I can see how it coule be a bit confusing after someone reads the book, though. Ultimately, it sounds like the book cover needs to be more about marketing than it does reflective on the book's content, although we obviously want it to be both. I'm new to all this, so I'm learning.

  • I like the second one. It still implies the sitting-around-talking-about-life-and-stuff motif, but is also kinda messy. Like life. And student ministry. And life in student ministry.

  • dave miers

    1) lacks authenticity. and the coffee looks terrible!!! would be better with a European (or Australian!) coffee.
    2) coffee is marginally better. i think this is the best. it's edgy, urban and neat.
    3) frisbee might reinforce stereotypes of youth ministry being about games etc.

    looking forward to the book!

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  • David Stewart

    Tim I love your stuff and what your doing!!!
    That being said…none of the above. I never saw round one stuff so maybe it was there but what about like a side profile or a view from the back of two people haveing a conversation. I know that book covers are supossed to be about catching the eye but I honestly like stuff to authentically communicate what is being marketed. Its like some TV comercials I see on TV it may really get my attention but after the comercial I am left wondering what is the product that all this hype for the last 10 seconds was about.

    Just one mans humble opinion. No matter what cover you go with I will get the book though because I know that it will be full of the quality content you have been putting out for serveral years now. To me your reputation is better than any cover.

    • Thanks, David. I appreciate your support. I hear what you're saying and it's definitely a tough choice to make. Thanks for your input.

  • Tim,
    I think the second option best describes the "practical conversation" sentiment. All of them look great and slick and publishable, but my thoughts are that the second option works best for your book.
    Thanks for letting us be a part of the process. Your ministry and site bless us, and bless our kids.

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