Creating book covers

The world of indie book writing and publishing is exploding.
Sites such as Amazon and CreateSpace have made it easy for anyone to upload their book for sale.

But most writers are not graphic artists or even good with graphics. You’ll see many awful covers on self-published books in the Amazon kindle store for example.

If you are amazing with graphics and are expert with graphics programs, then you may like to create book covers as a way of earning some extra cash.

 

What do you need?

  • A professional graphics program. (Certainly not Windows Paint!)
  • A portfolio of book covers you have already completed. These don’t need to have been created for customers – you can just make up some examples.
  • Licences for any images you use (or you can use public domain images).
  • An understanding of book genres and how the cover design should reflect the genre and theme of the book.
  • An understanding of how book covers work – they will be seen at thumbnail size in places such as Amazon, and the title of the book still needs to be readable and the graphics eye-catching.
  • An understanding of resolutions – a resolution of more than 300 dpi will be needed if the book is to be printed, while e-book covers can have a lower dpi. (Dots per inch)


Can I sell pre-made book covers?

Yes! These are very popular. You make a stunning cover, add generic text – and then when someone wants to buy, you simply change the title and author name.
Be sure to only sell unique covers in this way, as authors will expect they are buying a one-off design.

 

What are some free graphics programs?

Gimp

Serif  DrawPlus

ArtWeaver

SumoPaint

Muro

Paint.net

 

How and where can I find people to buy or order my covers?

  • Make a Facebook page for your business. Ask your friends to Like your business page and spread the word!
  • Make a Twitter account and network with your chosen target market (eg. indie authors, business owners etc.).
  • Join Fiverr and sell your covers there..
  • Hang out where your target market does and get known. Some forums allow signatures where you can link back to your website. Just don’t spam! Everyone hates it when people join a community just to post about their business.