Revelations: Authors Who Design Their Own Covers

Authors should never design their own covers, just like they can’t ever single-handedly edit their own work.

I learned this one a year ago with Ocean’s Gift. If you want the full, shameful story (it’s called Big Boys Like Pink), it’s in a guest post I did for Tome Tender Book Blog. It even has lobsters in it.

It comes as a revelation to some that they aren’t as artistic as they think, but I guess I always knew. I was the only person in a high school art class who got a D that semester.

Once I have the initial design idea, though, that’s different – it’s about assembly, like furniture from Ikea. I’m good at assembling bookcases, so how hard could it be?

A year of playing with the software. Two manuals I had to order from the UK and the US, respectively. Countless online tutorials that were always for the wrong version of the software. It was as hard as putting together a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle when you have the complete picture in miniature on the box. The best part is that once you’ve done one…it gets easier.

So, if you’re after revelations of the religious kind, sorry, you probably won’t find them on my blog. Cover revelations, though…I’ve been working on turning my ebooks into paperback format books. That means not just formatting the inside book, but making a perfectly-proportioned cover graphic, too.

So without further ado, I will now admit to being an author who has designed my own covers for four paperback books. I’ve been inspired by many and advised by even more, but, sadly, the penguin had to go.

Complete cover 25-9-2013 with template at 11 25 x 8 5 low res Water and Fire Complete Cover low res

Nightmares paperback cover low res Necessary Evil paperback cover 25-9 low res

So…what do people think? Any thoughts, comments, criticisms?

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2 comments on “Revelations: Authors Who Design Their Own Covers
  1. I actually “came up with” my own cover after hiring a cover designer. It turned out she only did the letter design and charged extra for showing me pictures that I could choose. None of them were right. My novel is set in the could forest of Colombia and my husband said “what about that painting you love?” It is the painting you see here on my gravatar and was just perfect for the setting of A Place in the World. It was painted my Martin J. Heade in 1901 in Amazonia.
    Happy Ending!

    • Oh wow…I had that problem with Ocean’s Gift, when a kind person took one look at my photos and suggested something completely different, which is what I ended up using.

      Love a happy ending 😀