by Shanna Hatfield
Many scoff at that adage of not judging a book by its cover, but the harsh truth is that people judge books by their covers every minute of every day.
That’s why it is so, so important for book covers to stand out from the crowd – in a good way.
First, let me state that I am not an expert on book covers. Not at all.
However, I have learned a few things in the last two years of self-publishing about book covers and thought I’d share them with you today.
If you’re writing a flowery romance that’s all sunshine and roses, you wouldn’t slap a photo of death and destruction on the cover. Likewise, if your book is a dark, suspense thriller, you wouldn’t make the cover all happy and cheery. Your cover should set the tone for the book. Similarly, it’s helpful if your cover image reflects the content of your book.
If your book is set in the mid-1800s in a western town, you wouldn’t put a photo of a skyscraper on the cover. The image should allude to the story.
The next step is one I think many people forget to take into consideration when they are choosing a book cover. Picture your cover the size of a postage stamp. That is close to the size your book appears in on-line retailers. Can readers clearly see the image? The title? Your name?
While a cover may look great filling your computer screen at full resolution, when you get it down to that tiny little size, it may lose all the important detail.
It is tempting for authors just getting started to cut costs by slapping together something for a cover. Resist that urge with every fiber of your being. If you don’t have graphic design skills or resources, hire someone who does to design your cover. You want your book cover to look professional and polished.
Avoid purchasing a popular pre-made book cover. I’ve noticed, especially during the holiday season,
You absolutely want your book cover to be an original. Invest time, funds, or effort into making it the very best cover possible.
Your book deserves it and so do you.
Shanna Hatfield is a hopeless romantic with a bit of sarcasm thrown in for good measure. In addition to blogging, eating too much chocolate, and being smitten with Captain Cavedweller, she writes clean romantic fiction with a healthy dose of humor. She is a member of Western Writers of America, Women Writing the West, and Romance Writers of America. Find Shanna’s books and follow her online: ShannaHatfield