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I'm first and I've got no suggestions ahhhhhhhggggg - personally I like your Blog header :)

What about a female hand stretching out towards a baby's hand, almost there but not quite? You know, "So Close".

hmmm...maybe an image of a long dark tunnel with a a silhouette of your babies agains the light at the end?

Did you pick a tag line or narrow it down at all?

No, kind of battling with the tagline

I think too many people thought the book would be about the babes. My fault for not telling them exactly what the book was about.

I can't say "after being so close for so long, I have finally arrived", cos that gives the story away, if you know what I mean. It is not about finally arriving, it is about trying so hard, being so close, struggling so hard to get there.

The tag line needs to be edgy, but still say that the story is about my infertility struggle. The book is quite serious. It is not a frivolous book, so I can’t have something too humorous. Yet, I also don’t want to be too wanky or ‘soft’, because I am quite tough and edgy in the book.

So, still looking for ideas.

Not sure that I can describe what I'm imagining but I'll try.

Monochromatic blue or dark tones ... a single droplet landing into water and little ripples spreading out from it. The reader, if they're the deep thinking type, could interpret this any way ... a tear drop falling into an ocean of tears; the ripples ... the tiny little waves being the process and all the 'ripples' it created in your life; the monochromatic tones representing the all consuming focus of your quest; the darkness and stillness of the image depicting your lonely and sometimes dark and scary journey.

Maybe it will demonstrate that there are many drops that make an ocean and really, you are just another drop in the ocean when it comes to infertility but that your story is focussing on your single drop.


Or maybe it will say nothing at all to the reader except an interesting pic of a drop in the ocean.

I had to just kept on rolling the dice

I remember you saying this to me - eventually you would get six's

I think I would keep the cover "baby free". Is there perhaps some medical instrument that's typical for IVF? Something every infertile woman would recognize instantly? (Please forgive my ignorance.) Or a petri dish with a fertilized egg or something like that?

As for the tag line, I can't stop thinking of that one line from "Forrest Gump": "Life's like a box of chocolates." ("You never know what you're gonna get"). Might be too flippant, though.

I'd go with something like a woma's face with a lone tear coming from one eye, a faded image of a baby nestled in the bottom curve of the tear. (stork bags always look like tears to me... you could incorporate that.

I'd go with something like a woma's face with a lone tear coming from one eye, a faded image of a baby nestled in the bottom curve of the tear. (stork bags always look like tears to me... you could incorporate that.

This may be too lighthearted, but I was thinking of a cartoon (not funny, ha, ha, just not a picture) woman with thought bubbles containing petri dishes, syringes and a baby, also in the same drawn style. The colors should be deep tones, I think.

I also like the idea of a woman's hand reaching for a baby's hand.

Love Tracey's and Lucy's ideas. And Ute's as well - a cooter wand on the cover of a book, that I'd like to see!! Got no ideas of my own though.

I agree that the tagline should not give too much away. You don't want to know how a book ends before you start reading it, do you? Wish I could come up with something, but 13 week old DS has slept for a total of 20 minutes today and my brain is fried.

I don't know why I"m putting this out there other than to show others it's ok to be a total dweeb. I read tons and admit I pick books by their covers I like the simple ones if they are too busy I pass them over stupid but true.

so what about a really simply image of a womans hand with her fingers crossed.. you know the here's hoping/good luck sign?

ooh or a pee stick mural

How about several scattered syringes and failed pregnancy tests on like a glossy pink cover?

Probably stupid idea...but...what about a road map...x marks the spot type thing...you know "so close", which path, how do we get there,etc etc?? Just an idea....

A woman standing by an empty crib....
or, a woman looking with sadness and longing at a mother and child????? Maybe with her hand lying on her flat stomach???
These things to me sort of show the feelings that go with infertility, something I know all about!

i think meriel's idea is excellent. since infertility is so much about the luck of the draw (forgive my minimalizing) i love the idea of the dice. rolling the dice is a great way to say "the odds are against me, but i'm going for it anyway."

along the same gambling lines, a roulette wheel would be a nice image. you could alter the black and red numbers to be pink and blue or change the numbers to be XX and XY or use abbreviations from the IVF world...

along the "luck" lines: a wishbone, a fortune cookie, a rabbit's foot, crossed fingers, a lottery card, slot machine, four leaf clover.

these are a bunch of thought-provoking images that veer away from the traditional "female" imagery of gauzy emotional women...

i've been lurking here for a while, btw. but i'm a graphic designer and felt compelled to weigh in on this one. (i also have twins, fwiw.) i love your blog.

I like Laurie's idea of working in a roulette wheel somehow.....

I'm drawn more to books that look scientific/serious. For example, Michael Ryan's book about his wife's IVF (Baby B) has a sonogram on the jacket, which is what attracted my attention. Maybe a very early photo of an embryo--like the one you typically get a transfer--would be good?

I would beg Shano over at Art by Shano to do the cover...


Oh my lord, I am so uncreative and I can't believe all the wonderful stuff people have posted. I got an A in physics at school, and a C- in art. No help here. As far as picking up a book, I would go more for a "gritty" look than a soft and pink type of thing.

BTW, before you moved on with the last post I noticed the comments had turned away from the false advertising debate and on to Marko's refusal to watch babes for a few hours. What's the update on that? Is he going to give it a go? I'd say it's about time he did! Just wondering what he does on the weekend. Sits and watches TV (hear you have a v v fancy one) while you do all the work...? Get thee to that lunch I say! Here's the thing, he doesn't ask you to look after babes when he goes out. It is assumed. Why don't you assume back...? ;) OK, poking my nose in where it doesn't belong....

A woman in silhouette looking at her belly, poking it with one hand and the wtf!? hand gesture {arm at side to elbow then out from body with the hand up - I don't know if that is cross-continental} with the other. Tan background {or maybe this yellowish color} and the silhouette in glossy strong red.

Does the book tell about your cave, T.? That is the first thing I imagined...a woman standing near the entrance of a cave.

I do like the dice, crossed fingers, and map mentioned above. And I love the suggestion of the image of a woman's hand almost touching a baby's, similar to Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel depiction of God's finger almost touching Adam's finger to bring him to life.

I love Lucy's suggestion. That would kill me.

I have been trying to find a post of yours where you recount meeting a colleague(?) after K&A were born, and you told him something like 'I said I'd do it'. This made you realise how hard you'd fought through the tragedies and setbacks, and that no matter what it took, you'd never have given up - that's the kind of attitude I associate with you.

As a long time blog reader (rarely comment though, sorry) I would hate your book not to represent you and what you've been through accurately. Cover and tagline should show you as the strong, confident woman you are - I would suggest you stay away from typical 'chick lit' colours and images unless you want to be tarred with the shallowness brush. This is the best alternative I can come up with!

Cover: a b&w shot of you looking through a window to a children's playground in the middle distance
Tagline: The long, hard road to motherhood

Babies are such a forgone conclusion to the rest of the world. If the book were about you having your first babies and you were fertile - the cover could have a prominent wedding picture with a bassinet blurry in the background - everyone would know what that book was about.

How about a somber wedding picture - blurry in the background and a foreground full of medical personnel, waiting rooms, syringes etc.

Oh, these ideas are good. The lady staring over an empty crib pulls at the heartstrings and is all about agony and despair, the lady holding the syringes, pregnacy tests seems more upbeat. Boy, tough one. Personally, I think you need something that is positive and says I didn't quit. You are a v, v, positive person. I think you should have a picture of yourself sitting sipping a glass of wine with a tag line that says, "it's not easy, let's talk". Meaning, hey girlfriend, sit down, grab a glass of wine and let me tell you my story - girlfriend to girlfriend. Of course, the story would always help the man realize what infertility is about too...good luck, cheering you on.

I know a blogger who took a picture of the dozons and dozons of used syringes falling out of her sharps container and stuffed into baby shoes. I think you should go with the harsh reality of infertility, rather than a weepy, girly book cover. Think John Grisham.

I agree with nothing too busy or girlie.

2 ideas come to mind:
1. stark white, with somewhat bold lettering for the title. To me this would represent the "white light" of love my acupuncturist would lull me with in preparing for each new cycle.

2. up close of a pretty female tummy, tan with little blonde hairs--a needle coming from the side, just starting to depress the skin.

Love your blog, can't wait to read the book!

Agree with DD. Don't go sappy on this one. Am not so creative myself either, but, know what i like! The needles from the sharps container is the best, most vivid way with the baby shoes...
Or, the vials with names of IVF drugs instead of the shoes.
And definitely have to have some eye catching stuff going on with the word INFERTILITY so people don't think it is about drug addiction!!!!!

What would I pick up? Well, I know what I would NOT pick up -- anything mushy/sappy. No tears, babies/baby parts, empty cribs, tummies, toys, warm and fuzzy stuff.

I very well might go for the syringes, petri dishes, etc.

I wouldn't do something vague, because the title's a little vague. The tagline will help, I expect, but the title will be the most obvious thing.

P.S. I like the survey, but I'd like it WITHOUT the reading blogs option -- everyone here probably reads instead of working, but I'm dying to know what other secrets people have. (I qualified for two others, but I'm not saying which ones!)

Did your clinic give you any pics of the embryos? Not sure how many you had transferred, but if it was 2, and you have 2 kids and so one is clearly K & one is clearly A, that's kind of cool. Even if it was more than 2, it would still be a cool picture.

I would leave the cover totally white except for the words So Close in the old text style (green of course) and then a witty and thought provoking tag line maybe something about the journey through hell or So Close and looking for the other side.... I think I may need another cup of tea before I become really creative. Or maybe just a picture of a woman in a paper gown...I dunno

Crud, you have so many great ideas they make ME want to write a book! I love so many of these!

I think all the ideas are really neat.
(Hi! I'm delurking!)

Another one that might be cool would be a bw picture of a baby's face, but really blurry, so you can just barely make out the features.

I like "So Close: A journey through infertility."

Nothing cutesy on the cover, because with cutesy I'm expecting something along the line of the "Girlfriends' Guide" series. I think maybe a picture of a woman -- from the shoulders down with some sidelighting or backlighting or whatever kind of lighting that sort of subtle like focuses on her belly.

I'll go with the edgy hard cover rather than pink blurry baby softness, my first thought which might gross yu out was blood, a pregnant belly cut open and bleeding, black and white cover with glossy embossed red blood - nasty I know but it's what came to mind so I'm throwing it out there. When you think of your IVFs what image flashes in your head? That's the one you should use...a doctors face peering up at you from between your legs maybe?

I wish I was creative enough to create your cover. As I was imagining what I would put on the cover of my infertility story, cribs and babies did not pop into my mind. All of of my life popped into my mind. Everying I do, try to do or don't do is related to my infertility. Graduate school, decorating a house, financial decisions, buying clothes, my job, my friendships, my family, my health, my personal growth, my hobbies. Nothing in my life is unaffected by being infertile.

Having read your blog for a while now, I know you will do infertiliy justice in your book, tagline and cover.

Best wishes,

As a bookseller: sex sells! I am afraid your 'nekkid' fears are actually pretty close to the mark. After all, so much of infertility is to do with intimacy, sex, invasive procedures etc...
A tasteful picture of a naked back would probably be picked up off the shelves...
Or I suppose you could go the subtle route: a picture of a birds nest with an empty cracked eggshell inside, in shades of grey and blue?
Please don't put some crappy meaningless line drawings on the cover- dummmies- storks etc yueeeerrrk.
Perhaps something wacky like a cartoon sperm with big 'blind man' sungl;asses and a white cane?
*time to put down my wine now*

I love Scott's idea. I can see a woman in a paper gown from behind with the back open...no ass showing just a nice long back or maybe from the front sitting on the edge of the OB table (stirrups in view with feet crossed at the ankle. no face just the front of the woman with Rosie's tag line. Nice and simple.
I would buy it and not just because I know who you are but also because the last time I was at the bookstore I found 0 books on infertility.

There is a picture by Staton MacDonald-Wright called, "Conception Synchromy" that I saw in a museum once about 3 years before even trying to have a baby and, in that indescribable way, caught all my thoughts visually about trying to have a baby: how miraculous the whole process is, how chaotic, how beautiful, how powerful, etc., etc..

Here is a link to the image: http://hirshhorn.si.edu/collection/record.asp?Artist=Macdonald-Wright&hasImage=1&ViewMode=&Record=1

I purchased three postcards of the image and carried them around for years and took them with me to every IUI as a tailsman of sorts.

Of course there would be rights issues ($$).

Congratulations on the first finish line crossed.


I sent you an email with a picture...and a tagline....

Delurking to give you my idea...
I too would go with something strong, nothing sappy. Maybe an empty seringe stuck in a dart board, close to the middle, but not quite there...
Can't wait to read your book!

I like the ideas with medical parphernalia the best. Akeeyu wrote about her visit to the IF section of the bookstore, and images of babies, pastels, cribs, shit like that was just (I think, if I remember correctly) offensive and patronizing. The image of the syringe penetrating a woman's abdomen is brilliant and provocative. Women who've been thur or are contemplating IVF are battle-hardened and bitter. (I loved the part in akeeyu's blog where she parodied a book's advice for how to deal with the stress of IVF -- priceless.)

i too love the idea of syringes either poking into a woman's abdomen or a ton of them coming out of the sharps container. if you do it with the sharps container, have them falling over several negative hpt's. just my 2 cents...

Just like when you asked about the tag lines, I like a little bit of everything people have suggested so far. The image that came to my mind, taking bits and pieces of people's suggestions, is a picture of a dresser/table with a mirror hanging over it. The reflection in the mirror shows a baby's room with an empty crib and in front of the mirror, on the dresser/table you have an assortment of medical paraphenalia, negative pregnancy tests and other IVF "knick knacks." Maybe even throw in a four leaf clover or some other good luck item or pair of dice to show the randomness and hopefulness you go through when you're going through fertility treatments. Maybe the reflection of the baby's room can also be a little fuzzy and out of focus to suggest some ambiguity.

My idea is to have 4-5 women standing next to one another, shoulder-to-shoulder-you'd see them from their neck or shoulders down (you don't see their faces). All of them are pregnant but one. All of the pregnant ones are in full colors, but the non pregnant one is either very washed out or in black and white.

Coming from a marketing and publishing design perspective, tips: keep it clean, simple, and something people want to pick up off the shelf. Nothing gross, keep it simple. Nothing cornily tear-jerking (empty baby crib, crying woman, flowers... it's all been done to death and was never v. good to begin with, no offense to anyone. Not to say they couldn't work if done very well, but you risk cliché).

I strongly recommend (you may have done so already) going to a large bookstore and looking at covers that already exist in the fertility section. What do you find striking, what don't you? You want to have something somewhat different so it will stand out, but not so different that it doesn't reach its target audience.

"A Few Good Eggs" (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0060776811/sr=8-1/qid=1143152909/ref=sr_1_1/104-0857360-8357508?%5Fencoding=UTF8) seems to be a big seller currently, and it has a very striking (in a makes-you-wanna-pick-it-up and read it) cover. But it has more of a happy cover than what I think you're looking for.

Here's another one that is nice, with a clean and modern design, and a similar theme to your book:


So to end this commandeering of your webspace: simple, strong imagery (of ONE thing -- no montages!!!), clean and modern design. As far as of what, that takes time and meetings and more time. Also, I'm surprised your publisher is getting your input on the cover at all, that's awesome!

Personally, I loved Erin's idea.

Lots of great ideas! I can't wait to see the finished product!

I love all of the suggestions here.
I would go for a white book, red lettering saying So Close in not too big letters, at the top, and the tagline: a struggle through infertility. your name could go on the bottom.
my favorite image idea is of the belly with the needle. I think that is striking and simple. I would not personally go with something too complicated...just a simple image. Actually,I like the idea of the belly taking up the whole cover, with the words on it.
Here is a cover that is sort of what I mean:
The subject matter is very very different but the image is very strong, and simple.
Good luck and I cant wait to read it!

I'm going along with the road map's idea. Thinking more along the lines of the maze that Julie used to represent getting Charlie to sleep. You at one end, and a series of medical instruments etc scattered through the maze. If anyone actually follows the maze, they'll find that it doesn't actually get to the end, but keeps looping back through all the other pics.

i would want to see a cover that captures the essence of how very low you can go when you are suffering from IF. that sad place that you go to that is horrible but can also bring you comfort because you still have a glimmer of hope. i'm not sure what the image is, but what comes to mind is a moody, vague suggestion of a woman's body with her hand on her flat stomach. and then perhaps something on the cover, maybe glowing from her belly, maybe not... that indicates hope. light, perhaps? this book is long overdue - tertia you are going to be a star!

I haven't read all the comments, so I'm sorry if I repeat..
How about a picture/illustration looking from "your perspective" lying down with legs up & a dr's head between them? As if you're having a transfer...
Or maybe a picture of an ultrasound of an empty uterus with the word "vacant" inside..

Someone mentioned shoes with baby syringes - what about a black and white pic pair of baby shoes for each m/c or embryo or something. You could have one syringe laying over the top of them, like a supersize image. At the bottom right corner are two full color pairs (perhaps a girl set and a boy set). Or maybe just the black and white ones to represent all of the babies you lost along the way. I think that is a powerful, tanglibe image of what the "journey" is all about, and how much there is to lose. That each failure is another empty set of shoes.

I also like the idea of the woman's back, again in black and white, sitting with
the gown open.

I agree with some of the others about not making it to cartooney or cutesy.

Good luck! I can't wait to read it!


The first thought I had was of sitting alone on that damn table, legs up in stirrups, with someone poking on the other side of the sheet. It's what sums up my 8 years of infertility in a nutshell. Lonliness, medical care, and failure.

Please, no baby or babies on the cover.

I cannot tell you how many times I've browsed through the meager in/fertility book section (or, as Sam calls it, "the depressing section"), picked up some book on infertility that is liberally festooned with infant imagery and then flung it back upon the shelf with an angry mutter of "Oh, yes, thanks very much, fuckers, as if infertiles are too goddamned dumb to remember what other people's children look like, as if we don't quite remember why the fuck we're doing all this, but thanks for fucking REMINDING ME. AGAIN. Fuckers."

I mean, you know. Not that I'm bitter or anything, but I would tend to think that the bitter infertile demographic is an important part of your target audience, yes?

T, I know you said that you don't want to use the tagline that you have for your blog - but I would BUY your book as an infertile because it really does say it all. It's what caught my eye the first time I ever saw your blog, and why I have been here ever since.
To me, it sends an instant message of hope whilst intimating that you have been through so much to get where you are now.
Use it Babe, can't think of anything better unless you can come up with something that beats it.

Oh, and my idea for the cover?

A couple standing together on one side with another holding a child which puts across the message that you are ostrasized because you don't have kids, all blurry with no faces of course.
Something that puts across the message of how painful and isolating infertility can be.

Of course you need to have photos of Kate and Adam in the book, complet with embryo photos, so special.

Just me 5c.

I am grabbed by covers that are colorful and usually a somewhat whimsical drawing. I love this womans graphics (and I am no way related or a friend). Rather than take the time to surf her blog for the wonderful graphics she does why not email her and ask for a peek at her portfolio. She used to have a professional page but I cannot seem to find it on her current blog.


How about a bluish grey cover with an ultrasound of eggs or a sac or perhaps a needle in the uterus. I'm not familiar with what happened during infertility treatments, but it seems the common activity is ultrasounds.

Maybe this is too on-the-nose, but a picture of a woman holding her arms as if she's cradling a baby, but there's nothing in her arms at all. An emptiness thing, you know? Or cradling a bunch of HPTs.

How about a baby mobile with un-cute, IVF related items hanging from it, like needles and pill bottles, etc?

I'm with Liz on this one. Infertility is so all consuming - every single part of my life was/is effected by it. I like the cave idea because that shows the rest of the world how a lot of us HAVE to deal... There really is no "escape" from IF in the "real world".

No ideas for a tag line, other than "So (DAMN) Close"

I can't wait to read it!!

Haven't read all the comments, so sorry if this idea is a duplicate. No babies, please. The image of a woman's hand reachign for a baby's hand is beautiful, but not for an infertility book.

I like the idea of a BBT chart, thermometer, needles, bottle of gonal-f, hpt tests, etc., all scattered (strategically, of course) on a white surface, maybe just out of focus - enough so that you can still tell what everything is. Arrange the items so that it's colourful - the blue writing on the gonal bottle, the pink lines of the hpt, the blue & red lines of the thermometer, etc. So it seems like sort of a "cheerful" picture, until you realize what the picture is OF.

I know whatever you come up with, on your own or with the help of your friends in the computer, the cover will be spot on. No worries there.

So, what's Tess's idea? I'm dying of curiousity!

Well, I like the picture at the top of your blog. Only you could have it without the silhouettes of the babes, just yourself (maybe without the wine,in order to look more demure), looking wistfully out across the savannah waiting and watching for...something.

I'm with doctormama- nothing fuzzy/cute etc, but also seriously lack creativity, so I'm really no help at all. I'll buy a bunch though.

How about a photo of your RE's lavish vehicle and expensive home? Since, ya know, you probably FINANCED them. :-P

Seriously, I like the idea of the IVF-mobile, but would even consider taking it a step further. Have you ever seen pictures that are made up of thousands of tiny images? How about creating an entire nursery scene, but once the (prospective) reader looks closely, they realize it's all a bunch of infertility equipment?

Ahhh... probably too complicated.

My first suggestion, that I was thinking before I read any of the previous responses, was one of a dim looking glass. For instance, Silouette of you in a darkened room, with your hands pressed up against a window or mirror... on the other side is the "not quite attainable" world. Perhaps a brightly colored (though perhaps out of focus?) "normal" scene of the rest of the world going by - including children, families, etc.

That's how I felt during my struggle. Like the whole world was oblivious to my pain, and was happily going about the kind of life I wished I could be living. EVERYWHERE I turned, there were pregnant women, babies, families... it nearly drove me mad. I felt so trapped by infertility. Definitely like someone stuck in a dark room, unable to escape.

Best of luck to you, T! I know this book is going to be AWESOME!

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