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  • Writer's pictureSheila Claydon

How to tell a book by its cover?

Original cover

Once, long ago, I wrote under the pen name Anne Beverley, and Golden Girl was my first published book. Then I wrote more books, until my family eventually persuaded me to stop hiding behind a pseudonym and write under my real name. That earlier book was still out there though, and to say the cover looked outdated is an understatement.

Then, many books later, the publishing house that owned it closed and the publishing rights returned to me. I sold it on to another publisher on the proviso that it would now be published under my real name. But in the field of publishing things are not always straightforward, so I had to agree to Sheila Claydon writing as Anne Beverley, as well as a new cover. One that was certainly an improvement on the first!

Second edition

A few years later, the same thing happened all over again. Another publisher, another cover and, finally, Golden Girl published under my own name. By then this book had been out there for a long time, so now it is a vintage romance with characters behaving a little differently than we expect them to in the twenty-first century. The heroine is still feisty though. It just takes her a little longer to get there!

Third edition cover

Now all my books bar one, Accident Prone are with the same publisher, BWL Publishing at

In my next blog I will introduce another of those early books together with the covers they have had over the years. In the meantime, if you would like to have a taster of Golden Girl, then go to my Book Snippets page and let it take you back to what it was like to be a secretary in a large company in London and Paris in 1964. Manual typewriters, desk phones connected t a central switchboard, no screens, hardback dictionaries, shorthand dictation, blotting paper...I could go on! It was a different world except for one thing...people still loved to read romances. And if you would like to let me know which of these is your favourite cover, I'd love to know.

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