Shannon Stacey

True Confessions—Clinch Covers

Because I’m too lazy for link-whoring, I’ll just say there’s been talk all over the place recently about romance covers. Yeah, there always is, but the whole RWA GS thing kind of kicked it in the ass. The Smart Bitches, especially, are hosting a rowdy discussion on man-titty covers.

I love the old clinch covers. Man-tittylicious pirates with flowing locks embracing a heaving-bosomed captive. Shirtless, bodybuilding English lords holding scandalized maidens. I was, and ever will be, a sucker for the clinch cover. (Although it’s difficult with the Smart Bitches pointing out such things as Fabio screwing a hole in the heroine’s back.)

Now granted, I’ve never faced the kind of anti-romance bias others seem to. As a matter of fact, I don’t think I ever really faced discrimination against my reading preferences until I met other romance authors. Interesting. But carrying them around in public doesn’t faze me.

A lovely, tasteful cover actually kept me from discovering Susan Elizabeth Phillips for the longest time! The horror! My library had a copy of KISSING AN ANGEL in paperback, but everytime I picked it up, I was confronted with two empty beach chairs in a lovely, pastel beach scene. Blech. It looked like a Meryl Streep movie in the making. But one day I was desperate and picked it up. DAYUM! If that book had had a yummy, Russian circus performer draped on the cover I would have read it immediately, and not had to break open my piggybank to buy every SEP book I could get my hands on the next day.

Anyway. I want flowing locks. I want bulging man-titties. I want rock-hard abs. I want breathless, cheezy passion on the cover of my books.

Hello, my name is Shannon, and I love clinch covers.

10 comments to “True Confessions—Clinch Covers”

  1. Charlene T
      · June 15th, 2005 at 5:30 pm · Link

    Yes!! I bought my first Johanna Lindsay book because it had half-naked Fabio on the cover! Bring on the beefcake, and I’ll buy that book. :cheer:

    I mean THIS has me ready to buy cookbooks:
    (link removed, no longer working)

    Why should cookbooks get better beefcake than romances, hmmm?

  2. THIS! Christine
      · June 15th, 2005 at 7:01 pm · Link

    Nice trout!

    Okay I’m bored with this subject now. So don’t care what’s on the cover just as long as I’m enjoying the read.


  3. Shannon
      · June 15th, 2005 at 7:25 pm · Link

    Lovely X is the star of this ditty
    She’s tired of talking man-titty
    Now she’s quite bored
    (I think she just snored)
    No trout for her; more’s the pity

    (OMG, I used a semicolon! The horror!)

  4. Candy
      · June 15th, 2005 at 7:35 pm · Link

    I think I’d like clinch covers better if I thought the models looked even remotely attractive. But then I think Beck and Topher Grace are hot, and they’d fall under the “skinny and dorky” category–not exactly romance novel cover material.

    But for what it’s worth, it seems as if loads o’ other people agree with youse guys. Clinch covers sell better than any other kind.

  5. Shannon
      · June 15th, 2005 at 7:40 pm · Link

    Topher Grace IS hot. :thumb:

  6. THIS! Christine
      · June 15th, 2005 at 8:05 pm · Link

    Man-titty wouldn’t be so bad if they weren’t bigger, perkier, and firmer than mine.. the bahstids!


  7. Charlene T
      · June 15th, 2005 at 8:32 pm · Link

    :shock: Shannon! Semicolons make the Baby Jesus cry! (And my editor. I have a little semicolon problem.)

    Great limerick! :rofl:

  8. PBW
      · June 15th, 2005 at 8:55 pm · Link

    I have three picturesque landscape scenes and five Running Woman (or Running Couple) covers on my romances. Very dignified, so cool for me that way, but my mom was so disappointed. “Where’s the gorgeous guys?” She wanted to know. I told her they were all too tied up posing for Johanna Lindsey’s cover artists (and she believed me.)

    As for the Running Woman on my covers, they all sort of look alike. I wonder if they’re using the same model; the poor thing must be exhausted by now. I’m hoping the next one will Unconscious Woman so she can get some rest.

  9. Kitty
      · June 16th, 2005 at 5:42 am · Link

    Oh yes! Bring on the Phenominal Pulsating Pecs for me :love:

    Y’know Shan you really need a drooling smiley for times like this :nod: and a begging one for times like this :woot:

  10. Shannon
      · June 16th, 2005 at 7:51 pm · Link

    That’s like the second semicolon I’ve used in my entire life. :crazy:

    Oh, the running couple! Considering theyy’re also on every one of Suzanne Brockmann’s covers, they absolutely must be exhausted. (Laughing my ass off at Unconscious Woman. *ggg*)

    Drooling and begging, huh? I’ll have to look around. And I’ll have to look at which of my current ones don’t get used, because I don’t want to go to four rows. That would just be overkill. Probably the sunglass dude and…maybe the kiss.

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