Having just decided on a cover for ‘After The Light, After The Love’ I realised how difficult it can be to come up with an image that sums up your book without going down the conventional route of just picking a cover that sums up the genre that you are writing. I have seen many covers where the image doesn’t relate to the story at all, it just tells you that it’s a horror/crime/romance. Many books span more than one genre, so why would you buttonhole your book before it’s even reached the shelf.
I thought it might be helpful to any new authors of things to think about when they design their covers. I found that there was far more to it than I initially anticipated. Now if you’re a book cover designer you’ll okay and it’ll be a piece of cake for you but most of us aren’t, in fact I’m useless which brings me to my first point. If you’re not a good designer give someone else the job. Really! I can find my way around powerpoint but that doesn’t put me in a good enough
If you’re not a good designer give someone else the job. Really! I can find my way around powerpoint but that doesn’t put me in a good enough catagory to design anything, let alone something that I’ve worked on for a year of my life. Your book deserves better, yes it’s not cheap but you will get your money back if your cover doesn’t look homemade. A customer browsing for a new read will scan book covers and if yours isn’t interesting or eyecatching then you’ve just lost a sale. A reader will probably spend less than a second looking at your cover unless it’s a good one.
Make the cover relevant to your story, not just a standard picture. Make sure it brings something to the story.
Bland, blend, blend. Stark straight lines that show that you’ve used a photograph and put it on a background colour don’t translate well when they are printed on glossy paper and end up looking like a home made cover, which is fine if that’s what you’re going for.
If I’m doing it I like to do a mock up to see what colours work together then send them to someone who can do a far superior job to me. I am only too aware of my limitations.
Write a wonderful book, give it a wonderful cover and the world will be your oyster.
Have fun and good luck.