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Monday, 28 February 2011

Book Covers Sell Books - Fact

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Lorraine Holloway-White

Brief  Bio.
Lorraine is the founder of Authors on Show, a natural born medium, healer, author of spiritual books, blogger and public speaker.  She has two books completed and with  her agents, two others self-published, and she also has four more books on the go.
My contract expires next month and I am seeking new literary agents. If anyone is interested, please contact lorraine@authorsonshow.com
Thank you.
To see more about Lorraine or where to buy her books CLICK HERE
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Book Covers Sell Books - Fact


Having worked in newspaper advertising I was taught there are 5 main components of a good ad.

Border

Illustration or photo.

Headline

Good body copy

and most important? - White space

To me, these five things are a good thing to keep in mind when designing your book cover. Far too many are too busy and need to be a little plainer as less is often more. Don't confuse the eye with too much detail.
Get the colour right. Choose a background colour that really stands out. There are so many books that are dark blue, dark brown, dark grey or black with a title of a similar colour so it can't be seen.  Be different. White or a very pale colour isn't good for advertising as it blends into the background and you can't see it so easily. All very well on a bookshop shelf, but not when advertised in a newspaper or online as most are today.
Below are some sample book covers. Pretend for now they are all the same genre. Don't look to see if it is by someone you know, just pick immediately without taking time to think. I want you to have a quick look and see which jumps out at you immediately just based on style, colour etc.. Which of these would you pick up first to see what's it's about? Then see which is the one you'd be least likely to pick up.






What made one the best and another the least attractive to you? Think about your answer and it'll help guide you when choosing a cover for your own book. What you found jumped out first and grabbed your eye will probably do the same for others. Which do you find least attractive. Again, ask yourself why and use these thoughts when designing your own book cover as whatever you decide to go with, could well determine whether your book is picked up more often than the ones next to it in a shop.

When going into a bookshop what's the first thing you do? Go to the section that most interests you. Unless you are looking for a particular author,  you'll then scan all the books displayed until one grabs you. But what if the genres are all muddled because they are the top sellers or on a promotion - what then? What would make you decide to pick one off the shelf to see what it's about rather than another? The cover is the most likely answer to that. Why does one stand out above the rest? The title is the next important thing. The cover has grabbed you, but does the title make you want to pick it up or leave it where it is? Okay, you've picked it up and then you turn it over to read the blurb on the back cover. Does that opening sentence grab them and make them want to read on? If they like the blurb, they will then open the book at the first page. Again, the opening sentence is the crucial one. Does it make them want to read the book or put it back down? The first paragraph has to be good as once all the other stages have been gone through, this is the one that will decide if it is taken to the till or put back on the shelf.

So you see how important your cover is? It isn't just the content of your book that matters, the cover can be the most important part. If it isn't attention grabbing, people don't pick it up. It doesn't matter how good the writing is once inside. If no one picks it up they'll never know it is the next best thing since J K Rowling will they? Get the cover right and you're half way there. Good luck and happy designing.
If any of you want help with book cover design BRADLEY WIND offers a brilliant service. Just click on his name for more details or e-mail him here:

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