Cover design is very important. People do judge a book by its cover. Though they may not judge the content inside, the cover encourages them to read what’s inside. There are many factors that you must think of when looking at a book cover design. For example, the color you choose as the main focal point will elicit an emotional response right out the gate from prospective readers. For example, if you are writing a murder mystery, dark color combinations are common and important. You are not likely to put a sun shining and a yellow cover on a dark mysterious book.
You laugh, but people make mistakes all the time of choosing what they like, and not trying to anticipate what their readers like. These are often two completely different things. This is the hardest part of the book design for so many authors, it was for the founder (Charles D’Amico). He talks about designing a cover for Veritas, and realizing it wasn’t about what he wanted, but what the reader needed, that took him time to understand, and to comprehend.
The importance of book formatting in design is more than one might understand. Charles speaks of his errors in Veritas with larger font, margins and other poor choices that led to a multitude of issues. Where he thought he was delivering a great product different from the norm, he was putting his readers in an uncomfortable position. They were grabbing a book in a fashion that they weren’t used to digesting. With his writing style already a bit outside the norm, adding this to the mix was a failure forcing the readers to be challenged at every turn, not able to enjoy the story for what it was.
Have you ever read a book and noticed the formatting was different than anything else you’ve ever read? Chances are you haven’t. To be honest that is the beauty of book formatting. I know you are asking yourself who calls book forming beautiful. We do, you know why, because it can drastically change the way your reader interacts with the prose on the page.You don’t want the reader to be distracted or even admiring the way you lay out the book. You want them to focus on the work, the words and the story. To do that you need to keep your book as close to industry standards as possible. This can easily be broken down into some form factors such as:
- Font Selection
- Trim Size
- Color vs Black and white
- Paperback vs hardcover
- Paper stock
- Paper color
- Page margins
- Spacing decisions
- Artistic / design elements
- Illustrations (if you have any, and how to place them)
Though these are all things we do when we sign an author to our Blue Handle Publishing platform, we currently don’t have a “format only” option in our Book Puma Services Platform. What we can do is help you with all aspects of the writing process and editing (where this will come into play).
When designing your eBook cover it should match your cover. The only thing that might need to be addressed is how it looks in grayscale. Oftentimes though programs like Amazon's Kindle and others format well and cover it. If you are concerned, loading our book into a reader previewer can help. If your cover has defined lines and tones it should transfer just fine, but always test it out to be safe.
There are plenty of gig workers that are very affordable that can help you with this, but if you take time to properly format and make your cover the first time, it should translate properly to e-readers.
This is rarely if ever an issue in traditional publishing (or hybrid) because of the systems and standards in place. The problem where this most commonly comes into play is a self-published author rushing to get their book out there and misses things. For example, the founder of Blue Handle and Book Puma did these very things. Because of that he lost months, if not a full year of solid traction he could have had with his novels.
Once you get hit with the grammar/formatting sucks on your book it takes work (and humility) to fix it and fix it fast. Take your time, make it right and don’t make the same mistakes Charles made. That is what this platform and our publishing company are about. We want to minimize the issues, mistakes and common problems authors run into. We also want to do it in a way that allows authors to affordably put out the best work possible.
The world deserves great art, and so do you. But what the heck does all of that and this have to do with Readers? It’s simple, if your book is full of weird formatting issues, layers of issues bandaged together it can show up in your eBook. For example Charles remembers having his book skip pages, large paragraph spacing and even sentences having spacing issues because of poor formatting.
A clean manuscript, with the proper formatting saves a lot of issues when you migrate it to several platforms to get it in as many hands as possible. If your book is formatted properly out the gate, there are little to no issues that go from your paper version to an eBook.