Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Just My Opinion: Your Book Cover

The book cover is quite possibly one of the most important elements of your book, outside of the story itself. The phrase, "Never judge a book by it's cover." is a nice idea, however people judge books by their covers all the time. I'm just as guilty of it as anyone else. A great book cover will grab your potential readers attention and the cover could be what prompts them to pick it up.

The Title is just as important, because that's the next thing that people are going to read. Sometimes it's the first thing they read and then they see the book cover. They both go hand in hand with each other.

So I'm not going to be using my book covers on here because I think that would just be nepotism at it's worse, and really I think it would just be wrong for me to do so. I do suggest that you all look these books up and give them a look yourself. Also I'm not making any comment on how good or bad a book might be, I'm only giving my opinion of what I feel makes for a great book cover. There are big name authors that have some terrible book covers. So it isn't just us indies that this happens too.

Here is one example of an ok book cover.

It's serviceable, it's not the best book cover ever. It's obviously been photoshopped, most are these days. However in this example it's really obvious. I would take a look, but I don't know If I would buy this book. It doesn't do enough to draw in a reader. The Title is really good. I like the title, however I think if they had gone with a woman on a beach during an eclipse that might have been a better choice. This is an example of what you can do when you put a little bit of effort into it. However it's still going to fall short because the cover isn't doing enough to draw in a reader.  I'm a firm believer in simpler is better.

Next is an example of what a bad cover looks like, and it's also an example of what not to do.

There are so many things wrong with this cover. It doesn't do anything to draw a reader in, you can tell they used the Amazon cover design tool, the boxed in title and author text is the wrong choice for this kind of book. It's an erotic tail there should be something here that tells the reader that, other than the sub-title. It doesn't tell a story at all, that the reader would want to read. It's important that the cover tell you a story. The title could be anything from a christian novel to a book about driving. There should be a Big Rig on the cover with a man and woman embracing, or something similar. If I was the editor for this book, I would have had the author change the title to something more seductive.  This is everything you don't do for a cover. I know this because I've done all the wrong things for a book cover myself so I'm not immune to these mistakes.

Now here is a great book cover.

Now here is a great book cover. It's minimalistic, it's got a great title, and it gives you a taste of what is to come. It's telling you that this is going to be a book that will keep your mind twisting and turning for the whole story. It has a sense of foreboding and a promise of some serious action in the story. This cover tells me that I'm going to need my brain to read this book, and that makes me want to read it even more.

This would be a book that I would want to take a closer look at if I was book shopping on Amazon. Which happens pretty regularly. I have put so many books on my wishlist because of need, want, or just wanting to make sure I didn't lose it, so I could get it the next time I had some money for books.

As you can see these books have vastly different types of covers. A book cover should pull you in an pique your interest at the very least. As an indie author I don't have a lot of money to pay people for book covers. I have to design my own. However if you do have the money I would really suggest you pay the money out and have a professional designer do it for you. There are so many places you can find someone to design your book covers. You could go to Fiverr, or 99Designs, or you could find an indie designer on Twitter just make sure you check out their portfolio before putting out the money. Also If possible get a reference or two that you can reach out to and get their opinion of the graphic designer.

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