Book Covers

Book cover design by Tony Sarg


As children we were all taught to never judge a book by its cover. But readers do it all the time. We look at the title, then the images and try to determine if we want to read the book. If we have time, we’ll turn the book over and read the back cover copy and maybe look at the table of contents. Like it or not the cover is the first impression that your book will make on potential readers.


A publishing friend of mine asked the question, “Are there certain things on a book cover that will turn you off?” I wish I could give you a magic formula that would make your book attractive to everyone who sees it. But the reality is, that everyone who sees your cover will view it through their own set of experiences. However, you can make sure that your cover has the following characteristics that readers are looking for.


  • Choose an image that reflects the title
  • Choose background colors that reflect the theme
  • Make sure that the overall design draws people in
  • Choose a spine font that is interesting, yet readable
  • Make sure the back cover copy is intriguing


You may spend months or years writing your book, spend just as much time and energy on your cover design. Pay a little more to get a custom design if that is what is needed to make your book stand out from the others on the shelf. Even electronic books, have covers so this advice applies to e-books too. A good book cover can be your best marketing tool.  You can take the image and make post cards, posters, flyers, whatever materials you need in order to promote your book.


Until Next Time,


Nicole D. P. McLaughlin





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