Guest post by Cover Designer, Cory Clubb!
eBook Cover Design.
The old saying goes “Never judge a book by its cover”. Like most folks, you, for example, are just trying to break in. You’ve got your manuscript finished and are ready to throw it out into the world. Even better, with the explosion of eBooks, you’ve got an all access way to reach a real audience. Although that old saying has now become truer than you think. That’s what I’d like to focus on here: eBook cover design.
You, the self-pubbed author, someone who has never signed with a publishing house and you can barely stand to wait and unleash your story on the masses. This is your first strike against you when it comes to cover design. Slow down. It took you months, maybe even years to write that book. Why not take some time to package it nicely and have it done right. A white cover with the title and your name in black Papyrus font on the cover is not going to gain you readers. Seriously, I’ve seen this.
Secondly, you’re not a designer, you’re a writer. This is one of the hardest things about cover design in an eBook market. I’m not saying you couldn’t design a perfectly fine cover, I’m saying if you’re putting your name on the front, you’ve got a story to tell, not a book cover to create. Relax and don’t worry here’s the upside. Without being signed to a publisher, you’ve got free reign for what goes on the cover design. Let the professional designer worry about making it look pretty. You’ve got a sequel to crank out!
With eBooks and eReaders almost becoming the norm in publishing these days, you have mere seconds to catch a browser’s eye. Your book is not sitting on a bookshelf in a store, no, your little baby is at the justice of a flick of a finger. Maybe we should change the wording to that old saying to “Never judge a book, BUY its cover”? And isn’t that almost the case? Because in our technology advanced society, we don’t have time to turn to the back cover blurb and read about the book. We want it in one snap-shot of a moment to know what that book is about. This too is working against you.
For eBooks it’s go big or go home. The reader has to remember three things when telling some else about a book. The title, the author’s name, and what the cover looked like. Be memorable and standout. There are numerous legal thrillers out there, try something new and exciting! Have said all that, do remember that size does matter. With smart phones and tablets, we see things at thumbnail size. Be generous with your font sizes and have your name be in a legible font that works to your advantage.
Cover design is not an easy thing to do, believe me. What most self-published authors have wrong is that it doesn’t matter, just get it out there, and start selling! It does matter! You want to be remembered after your reader finishes that final scene. Don’t just slap on an image and be done with it, have some fun, take some time, and be creative with your design. If you don’t know how, hire a well respected cover artist because they put as much passion into your cover as you have in those words.
A book cover needs to be unique to the story itself, inform the reader of what is going on with the plot, and the characters. It’s sort of like your elevator pitch, but instead it’s more of a tiny advertisement in that elevator and you’ve got seconds to get folks to notice it before they get off.
Author Aaron Patterson: Blog: The Worst Book Ever.