Choosing a Cover For Your Self-Published Book

illustration of a person thinking about book covers

It’s never been easier to publish a book on your own.  And a lot of people are doing just that.  Unfortunately, with so many people publishing books, it can be hard to get your book noticed.  This means your book’s cover is as important as ever. 

A book’s cover can tell us a lot about its contents.  The choice of font, image, and style can help us guess what the tone and genre might be.  And, for better or for worse, the overall quality of the cover can shape our perception of the quality of writing.  Books with poorly formatted or low resolution covers will come off as unprofessional.  On the other hand, a tasteful cover can help a book come off as esteemed and worthwhile. 

Why You Should Consider Hiring a Professional

You don’t necessarily need to spend a lot of money (or any money) to get a professional looking cover for your book.   However, if you do choose to do it yourself—or hire someone on the cheaper side of things—you’ll need to do a bit more leg work.  

A professional graphic designer with experience making book covers will know exactly what you need.  And what you need might not be as cut and dry as you think.  Different digital market places may require different sizes or formatting, for example.  And if you’re planning on having your book printed, you may also need a version of your cover that accounts for bleed. 

You can certainly do all of these things on your own, too.  Just be prepared to spend some time with a search engine and some image editing software. And if you are planning on having a stack of books printed, make sure to ask for a proof!

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