Can You Judge a Book By It’s Cover?

  I know we’ve all heard it a million times “You can’t judge a book by it’s cover” – but do you? Of course you do. It’s human nature. It’s the same thing as “first impressions are lasting impressions”. When someone looks at a book cover, it either catches their interest or it doesn’t, and whether or not it does or does not – well that means a sale or no sale scenario for you as the author. That being said, YOUR BOOK COVER IS VERY IMPORTANT! 

The image on the front cover of your book attracts interest. And those images affect the purchaser’s expectations of the words that follow in the book. Those images shape the reactions of those expectations. The choice of your book cover can determine whether or not someone reads your book.  

There is a lot of controversy on whether it is better to hire a professional illustration designer to design your book cover according to your specific needs or whether to purchase a premade book cover. Hiring a professional can be very costly especially when no money has come in prior to your book’s launch. You have spent a lot of time and effort into the writing of your book and often there is no money left over for the other details that go into promoting your book. Not everyone who writes a book has a big budget for the cover or promotion of it. But do not despair – there are other ways to get around this. 

It is true that you want your cover to reflect what your words inside say. You want the cover to encompass the insides with a single picture, one that tells the reader a little about what they can expect when they read the book. The cover you put on your book tells the reader also about your artistic taste, which will also come through in your words. So, when you are looking for a book cover for your book you need to find one that can tell the reader about what to expect inside, but also a cover that is reflective of your artistic tastes – that will appeal to your audience. 

Your book cover also must look professional, whether done by professional illustration companies or not. Your book cover can tell the reader how seriously you are about the business of writing.  

So how do you choose a good book cover that will make readers pause when they see your book and say to themselves “That looks like it could be good.”? The first step is to do your research. Find similar books on the same genre/topic as yours and see which ones are selling the best. Take a look at their covers.  Which ones catch your eye? Pick about 5-10 books that really speak to you and compare them. What do they have in common? Do they have a solitary figure on the front representing their main character? Does the artwork have a realistic effect or more of a digital look? Are there just words and symbols on the cover? Determine which are your favorites and look for book covers in that same style for your book.  

Another thing you can do in your research is ask for feedback from people you know. Ask what would draw their attention to a particular book. Ask who their favorite author is and find out what style that author uses. Before you publish your book, ask for feedback on the final cover draft. What do they like about it? What would they like to see changed? And most important, would they buy that book based on what they see? After all of this, you should have a good idea of how your book would be best represented.  

How to Pick Premade Book Covers 

  • Browse through as many book covers as you can and find one that has a picture that is closest to your storyline. 
  • Pick out the style of cover your like best – whether it is digital art, photographic artwork or hand drawn. 
  • Make sure you pay attention to the font too. Your title should stand out as much as the artwork.  
  • Make sure your book cover is bold (you want to stand out from the other books in your genre.) Make sure it is eye-catching. 

One of the great things about buying a premade book cover is the price. Premade book covers are a fraction of the cost of a hired professional one-on-one designer. Therefore, if you ever need to change your book cover it will not cost you an arm and a leg to do so. And premade book covers can look as good as any professional can come up with. After all, the person who made that premade book cover is a professional designer too (they just market their skills in a different way). Also, you can pick a premade cover that will only be sold once so you are assured that your cover will not be repeated on any other book. 

If you need to find a premade book cover for your project, take a look at some of the ones at Imagination Design Arts at or at Digital Art Bazar at .  

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