Are Self-made Covers a Good or a Bad Idea?
Are Self-made Covers a Good or a Bad Idea?: A purchased cover is costly. However, an amateurishly created cover will not result in sales. What should a self-publishing author do?
Many self-publishing courses and guides advise authors to purchase their covers. They claim that they must present a professional image. They claim you can't do it on your own.
And if you've ever attempted to design a cover for a song, you'll know what I mean, and noticed that it doesn't look anything like the covers you see in bookstores, they might be right.
At first, at any rate.
The issue for a new independent publisher is that a cover can quickly add up to be a considerable expense. You're probably only making “coffee money” if you've only published one or two novels. The prospect of writing and publishing another book causes you to sigh—another problem.
You begin to think incorrectly, viewing new books as expenses rather than potential money streams.
And you're correct in that regard.
Coverage on Fiverr
When you try to save money by getting book covers from Fiverr, they frequently lack the professional appearance of best-selling books.
Fiverr vendors only make a few bucks for every cover unless they have raised their prices. That means they only have a few minutes for each cover if they want to earn a profit.
The greatest of these Fiverr cover designers employ professionally designed templates. This assures a professional appearance, but it also means that your cover will seem similar to thousands of others, with a few exceptions.
You can check it out by searching “Kindle cover” on Fiverr. Check out the examples. Then go on an Amazon tour and see if you can see some of them in different guises.
A Fiverr cover could be a temporary solution to see if your book sells.
Store-bought pre-made coverings
There are shops where you can purchase pre-made covers. GoOnWrite.com is one of the oldest and most well-known. You can choose from the artist's existing covers, purchase them, and he will add your author name and book title. Then he'll take the cover off his store. These covers are more expensive than the conventional Fiverr covers, but they are also somewhat better because they are one-of-a-kind.
Design should be delegated to more than one individual.
It is sometimes recommended in a course to employ two Fiverr artists to acquire a better result. You are capable of doing so. Alternatively, you can hire numerous graphic designers to create your cover and pay for the one you choose.
A website like 99Designs.com is designed for this purpose.
Write what you want, and the artists will create covers that they believe should look like yours. You examine the outcomes and select the one that appeals to you the most.
Prices start at $299, but you can get your money back if you don't discover a design you like.
Invest in a cover artist.
Hiring a cover artist might provide good, awful, great, or mediocre results. Examine previous work samples and, if possible, acquire a second view from other writers before hiring an artist. Expect to pay $100 or more for a cover artist. That's a lot higher.
You've now learned about the outside options that will provide you with a more or less professional-looking cover.
What's the other option?
Make your cover.
Don't give up if your cover attempts look like a five-year-old had fun painting mum and dad. Numerous approaches can be used to solve this obstacle.
You can use Amazon's cover templates if you publish on their KDP platform. They're better than nothing, but you'll also notice a lot of books that look exactly like yours but have a different title and author name.
A better option is to learn how to make your covers. Covers that seem professional. But how do you do that if you don't spend years studying graphic design?
You're emulating other popular covers.
You never, ever copy. It's unethical as well as illegal. However, you might discover a cover that you like and use it as inspiration for your own.
To begin, go to Amazon and look for your subcategory. Examine the best-sellers in that subcategory and pay attention to the overall appearance of the covers. Is there someone on the covers? Do we perceive their faces, bodies, or a combination of the two? Are they staring at you or walking away? Are the covers depicting buildings or landscapes? Or is it simply words and names?
How do the colours look? Dark? Light? Many colours mixed, or just one or two?
Feed your subconscious with all of this information.
Then select a cover that appeals to you.
Make your mockup with Photoshop/Illustrator, Affinity Photo/Designer, or an internet software like Canva.
Use various photos, colours, and, of course, your title and author name. Use fonts that appear similar.
(Ensure that you have permission to use the photos and fonts on your cover.)
These three elements alone will significantly alter the appearance of your cover compared to the original. However, it will appear professional, providing you choose a professional-looking cover in the first place.
Will it take some time?
Yes, it will take some time to learn, but it will become easier with each new cover you produce. It will also make it easier for you to determine whether or not to write and publish a new book when you are not faced with hefty fees.
Improve your covers
It is not always possible to replicate previous covers. Perhaps your title is significantly longer or shorter than the original. Alternatively, you may wish to add your style at the conclusion, which better defines your book series.
There are other classes available.
There are numerous free YouTube tutorials available to teach you how to utilise your favourite design programme.
However, the difference between an unprofessional and professional cover is how the title and author's name appear.
If there is one ability you can employ to improve your cover design, it is “typography.”
Even inexperienced readers can discern a terrible cover from a good one by examining the font, the size of the letters, the spacing between them, and the layout.
If you're ready to take the plunge, LinkedIn has many such courses. You can even try them out for a month for free.
So, what are you going to do?
If the prospect of paying for a cover is holding you from creating your book, use Amazon's templates or buy a cheap cover on Fiverr.
You'll be better off learning how to make your covers over time. Take the time to learn, starting with imitation. Learn more about the craft later.
Perhaps you'll have generated enough money from your books to afford a professional cover artist by then.