If you’ve ever bought a book online from Amazon or any other online store, once you’re at the point where you have a listing of books in front of you, what’s the most eye-catching thing you see? The book cover, of course.
It doesn’t matter at this stage what’s in the book, if your cover does not catch your potential reader’s eye they will simply scroll past your book and choose something that does catch their eye. Your book cover has to be outstanding, eye-catching. It has to make a potential buyer stop and click on the picture for more information. Even if your book is at the top of the listing, the very first book the potential reader sees, there is no chance that reader will click on the image to find out more if the cover is drab and unappealing.
Once they have clicked on your book cover, then that’s a whole new set of rules that come into play. But to be at that happy stage your book cover must rock!
Many people advising you on how to create that special cover will explain that unless you’re a professional book cover designer then don’t even think about creating your own cover. Well, that could also be said about writing in the first place, which is patently nonsense. Unless you try your hand at writing and selling your book as an indie author, how do you know if you’re any good at it. Same with designing a book cover. $200 it seems is an average price to pay for a basic book cover, which is a lot of money to many struggling authors. A lot of indie authors are drawn to services offered on Fiverr, which may work out for you and equally may not, it’s really the luck of the draw. I tried it once and realised I could do a better job myself. It’s a tough call, but if you can’t afford to have your book cover created for you, you have little choice than to use Amazon’s free service or do it yourself.
Assuming you are going to do it yourself, try Pixabay for free images. You’ll also need software, like Photoshop and Boxshot, which is what I use, to create the image. But Photoshop is expensive, though there is a monthly payment option. Gimp is a free alternative, and let me point out here I’m not recommending anything, just throwing ideas out there. Alternatively you have services such as Canva. If I were you I would do as much research as possible on the web first before choosing anyone or anything to create my book cover.
If you want an idea of what NOT to do in creating a book cover, have a look at Bad Book Covers on Twitter. No matter what you do, in the end it’s up to you, but you have little choice than to have a good eye-catching image for your book cover. Because without that eye-catching cover, your book will never sell. It’s a harsh reality, but something you have to address.
Tom Kane © 2017
My Books on Kindle & Paperback
An Indie Author Guide to Blogging – Helpful advice, hints and tips for bloggers
A Pat on his Back – Lifestyle humour
Living in Cyprus: 2013 to 2016 – An expat’s life in Cyprus
Diary of a Debt Collector – True life humour
Operation Werwolf – WW2 action adventure fiction
Hitler’s Secret Atomic Bomb – The evidence for Hitler’s atomic weapon program
Ciao Roma – A guide to short stays in Rome
How to Start Your Own Embroidery Business – Home working
The Eternal Man – Science Fiction short stories & flash fiction