There is so much today to compete with as a writer; online articles – so many new magazines have emerged as more social media sites develop and widen. Bloggers have leapt from the fold as technology developed to make it easy for anyone to post and research and share.
Kindle publishing has made self-publishing an affordable and competitive strategy for mass marketing of novels, short stories and poetries. With people scrolling and swiping from screen to screen the writing alone; no matter its quality is not enough to guarantee readers. Especially not if you are up coming author.
This is why the front cover has become a critical tool in the writer’s arsenal.
It has to be different….
The word quirky has been exploited beyond use, it makes us want to put a bullet through our head, but this once it does capture the tone a front cover needs to stand out among the crowd.
For readers that will be sourcing your work online, they can very easily scroll just a bit too quick, absentminded multi-tasking or zoning. In this case, you need something that can pull them from their reverie.
Maybe you could opt for a simple and bold design, excavate colour choices carefully to suit the mood of your book. Or perhaps you explore some interesting arrangements of illustration or design that stand out and stun.
You will find a lot of publishing sights will offer you the ability to upload your own design or to use a template. Word of advice, the templates can be ok if you want something simple, it is a budget option, best suited to smaller projects. Though be warned they are bog standard, with limited options, you will be creating something that already exists which may not provide you with as much traffic as if you had designed something yourself.
There is a sense today that an individual must be a jack of all trades; it does not feel enough to simply call yourself a writer anymore. For anyone attempting to transcend from amateur to semi-professional, you know social media is your best friend and being an expert in digital marketing strategy will allow you maximum people to entice as your audience.
Then you need to develop visual understanding and become a graphic designer or artist to be able to aesthetically please your audience’s eyes. There are far many other talents and role needing to be fulfilled when trying to make yourself known.
When you are just starting out your resources are limited, and you cannot afford to employ the individuals and companies to do these things for you.
This means you can often feel as though you are compromising quality and not doing the best job possible, and sometimes in the beginning sacrifices have to be made and you can only do the best out of what is available to you.
This is where networking can be your saving grace. It can be a mistake to appoint yourself responsible for tasks that are too far out of your comfort zone and skill range. There is a difference between being a conceptual connoisseur and a visual one.
You are probably tired of hearing this word, but it really is key. It can be the saving grace, and the difference between a mediocre book and a fantastic one.
It is a shame for your writing to be brilliant, but you not to have utilised all aspects of design to ensure people give your writing a chance, and look at it long enough to become engaged and realise your talent.
There are many people in the same position as you, working within their chosen creative fields. Artists, graphic designers and illustrators; looking for any form of commission or collaboration to earn their own recognition.
By employing someone who speaks in a visual language, they can turn your narrative into a stunning design that will intrigue people, and from that curiosity they will take a closer look and from there give your writing a chance to impress them.
The impatient generation
Growing up in a word that has made everything available in an instant via a screen or button, our attention span has lessened due to the inordinate pressure we feel to absorb as much of the information overload as possible.
So long paragraphs of text just cannot compete, we have had to adapt to meet the changing demands of our audience.
This is way maximising on multi-media presentation and advertising is key. So do not underestimate the importance of your book cover. If you are stumped then do some research of your own favourites for some inspiration, and perhaps take a look, see what services there are out there, if there are any artists who would be interested in working with you to give you a more unique cover.
Comment or post below if you have any other ideas or examples as to what makes an amazing book cover.