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Can you judge a book by its cover… and will it help sales?

Can you judge a book by its cover? The answer is… Yes.

You’ve spent months, even possibly years, writing your book, every word crafted with precision to entice your reader and draw them in. Your book is written, the manuscript edited, but how are you going to grab the reader’s attention? It’s now time to call upon the expertise of a graphic designer.

But besides producing the artwork for your cover and inner pages, how exactly can a graphic designer help?

A graphic designer’s area of expertise is being visually creative. Their role in the production of your book is to visually interpret the theme or subject matter of your book and design a cover that not only accurately complements the book’s content but will also appeal to the book’s target market and lead to… sales.

For example, whatever your book’s genre, it’s the graphic designer’s job to ensure that not only does the cover visually sit comfortably within that particular genre, but also stand out from the competition vying for purchase.

A book’s cover and interior design has a part in whether the book will sell or not. The goal with book design is to create an eye-catching cover that grabs the reader’s attention and inner pages that are inviting and a pleasure to read. For your book’s inner pages, a graphic designer’s expertise will come into play regarding which fonts to use, their size and how the text is laid out.

As the author, at some point during the writing process, you may have had a ‘light bulb’ moment as to what the cover should look like or maybe just some vague visual thoughts as to how the cover could look. It can help to communicate your thoughts and ideas with the graphic designer who can then use these as a starting point.

Likewise, it’s not a problem if your imagination is totally void of how the book should look – graphic designers are more than happy to start from a blank sheet of paper. After all, this is their area of expertise.

You never have a second chance to make a first impression – it’s important to make sure your book’s cover design creates the impression you want and grabs the reader’s attention. After all, you have spent months, perhaps even years, writing the book!


Mark Hobin – Graphic Designer/SRA Books Creative Associate

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