Let’s get real, every book is judged by its cover. Book covers are the one chance books get to make an impression to have the privilege of getting a reading. Designers strive to keep their ideas fresh, grab attention, and stick to the personality of the book while at it. All this while also representing the book’s persona, tone, style, and the plot just enough to leave room for mystery. Not to mention, it has to be modern, on-trend, and marketable too.
Was all this too much to remember? Don’t worry, here are 3 unique ideas that are guaranteed to give your next book an edge above all others.
Focus on the main subject
A good cover lets the main subject shine through. Think about what represents your book in the best, most accurate, and crisp way and give that all the limelight. A very common design trope involves the image of a person’s face. This image demands the attention of readers from miles away, even before it piques their interest. Waiting for Romeo by Diane Mannino and Les Miserables by Victor Hugo are superb examples of this idea.
Harness the power of handwriting
Just like handwriting, every book is unique. With handwriting and calligraphy riding a wave of popularity lately, this design is seen as a feature on many nonfiction and memoir-based books. Remember that good design doesn’t always have to be clean. A little smog around the title doesn’t redirect your reader’s attention, it helps refocus and demands a second look instead. The Princess and The Goblin by George McDonald and Lost For Words by Edward St. Aubyn are excellent examples of this phenomenon.
Don’t be afraid to mix things up
Yes, keeping it simple is usually a good way to go, but don’t shy away from thinking big either. The power of a collage when portraying a mix of themes, settings, and imagery is unmatched. Conveying multiple ideas in one glance, it’s the best way to allow your reader to soak it all in. Experiment with cover textures too as they give your book an element of unfamiliarity that screams mystery. You can always look to Nobility by Mason Dakota and TresPassers by Todd & Tim Wynn for some inspiration.
At the end of the day, the design of your book cover matters. If you have one shot at a first impression, you must make it worthwhile. While your ideas form the base of your cover, real finesse comes with the expertise of a graphic designer with years of experience and knowledge of book design principles . No matter what genre your book falls into, there’s always a great cover idea waiting to be unearthed.