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Una Tiers

If you're an independent author or even if you have a publisher, you may need to read up on book covers. You know the most about your book, and are the best person to make a cover that represents the book.

So where do you start? Below are some ideas, I hope you will comment at the bottom.

1. Ebooks are so small in the thumbprint, it's a good starting point. You can more easily move a thumbprint to a paper cover.

2. Start at Amazon under your genre and look at at least a hundred covers. Take notes on the colors you like and the ones you hate. Watch the title and author color and font in relation to the background. Take a cell picture of ones you love.

3. Make a trip to the local bookstore. Go into your genre again and see what you love. Take more pictures.

4. Google book covers to read another five articles. Everyone has a different perspective.

5. On a budget? Pull up  It has artists from all over the world, with samples. Again, save samples of what you love.

6. Sit down with a piece of paper. Yes, really even if everything you draw looks like a cow.  You tube has videos of how to draw a daisy.

7. You may want to change the title so it fits. My most recent book was Judge vs Michigan, but when I drew the cover, I saw Judge vs Water was a better fit. Google your title.

8. When you select fonts, consider ones where the letters are equal in width.

9. Draw at least 25 different covers. If you don't own crayons or a child, go to the library or buy a box.  You can cut and paste like a vision board or draw.

10.  Show your best renditions to 15-20 people and ask which one they like. Keep in mind they are not familiar with your book content.

11.  Look for a cover artist. Ask fellow authors who does their work. Ask about changes after they turn your rough drawings into art.

12. Do not fall in love with a cover unless it works.

For my book Die Judge Die, I used a picture I took at the Chicago Cultural Center of lights embedded in the floor. The color came out close to black making the letter choices limited. Two years later I realized this cover did not convey much more than my love of the lights.  I made a new cover with a tombstone and a cane and a few gavels thrown in to announce the book was about the law. I sent my hand drawn, library crayola version to my cover artist. He produced a gorgeous cover. The gavels were too 'busy' so we cut them out. The cover is lavender because I love purple and I think it conveys the tone of the book. My artist, changed the type of cane. After looking at the first draft, I wanted proportion changes. Look at the finished new cover.  

My most recent release, Judge vs Water had quite a few cover prototypes, probably more than any other cover. I wanted to try WORD ART where words form an image without an outline. It wasn't the choice of people who saw the samples. The cover is really really magnificent. Here is the cover.  Thoughts? Email me

JUDGE vs WATER releases this week, on January 20, 2019.