Don’t judge a book by its cover are wise words when you stop to think about them, but do you? First impressions matter. On Seth Godin’s blog today he points out how a grand entryway affects what you think about the quality of a business.
For writers the first impression readers get from you is the cover of your book. The New Yorker posted an interesting article last year about the decline and fall of book covers. I think good design is as important as ever, maybe even more so since so many of them are terrible.
As some of you know I’m not shy about noting my displeasure over poor cover design, especially from self-published authors. Why go to all the bother of writing a book only to slap a cover on it that doesn’t measure up to the content. Or is that crux of it? The content doesn’t warrant the monetary investment of a professional book cover design. Or professional editor for that matter, but I’ll get to that next week.
It’s not that self-published authors aren’t capable of producing a quality cover, but I think many are not honest with themselves about their lack of knowledge on the subject. Here’s a very good overview by Jo Sabina graphic designer on hongkiat.com with links that can help you design your own cover.
A few rules to design by from Writer’s Digest.
To help you chose a designer try these resources:
Chip Kidd’s TED talk Designing Books is No Laughing Matter