This guest post is right in time and on topic for what has been at the forefront of my mind lately! Enjoy these excellent points from the fabulous Saoirse O’Mara!
Some writers already know exactly how their book cover should look like before the book is even finished. If you are one of them, congratulations!
If you are not, then you belong to those writers this blog post is for.
So you have written a book, and you want to publish it. You did your homework and know that a good cover is your number one sales tool. But how do you go about choosing a cover that’s just right for your book?
1) Genre: Do you write in a particular genre? Most genres have certain cover trends that make genre books easy to spot in a shelf (or on a website). Check out the latest releases of trad publishers in your genre. Can you make out common elements, colour schemes, styles? Maybe similar-looking fonts? If yes, try to implement those elements into your cover too. Make it easy for genre fans to notice your book!
2) Series: Do you write a series? Then make sure that readers can easily recognise your books as part of one. Maybe add the series title and volume number to the cover. Definitely use the same “look” for all your covers in that series. Stick with your font(s), your cover style, your layout.
3) Professional Look: Are you a cover designer? If the answer is no, go find one to help you with your cover. True, some people just have the talent, but chances are you’re not one of them. At least get professional feedback.
4) Your Book Theme: You think this point should be at the top of the list? Sorry to break the news to you, but catering to the readers’ “sensors” sells more books than to nail your book’s topic on the cover. Of course, your cover should still fit your book, but keep in mind the other three points when you’re deciding on your cover. If you’re not writing romance, for example, think hard whether your main prot really needs to kiss the half-naked warrior queen on your cover. Misleading cover art is a good way to collect negative reviews from disappointed readers.
That being said, choosing the right cover art isn’t always easy. If you’re unsure, a good cover designer should be able to work with you to find exactly the right cover for your book. For fantasy, I can highly recommend my own cover artist, Svenja Liv. Check out her website http://svenjaliv.com and then just send her an email, she’s easy to work with and delivers top quality covers!
Saoirse O’Mara is a children’s and YA writer and home mostly in the fantasy and mystery genres. Check out her website http://saoirseomara.wordpress.com for more information on her and her books, or become a fan of her two series Miro the Dragon (http://facebook.com/MiroDrakonia) and A Rogue’s Tale (http://facebook.com/ARoguesTale) on Facebook.