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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Book cover crazies

OK, so I've finally chosen my book cover photo and have a Photoshopped high-res image of it on my hot little hard drive. Today, I went into my Amazon CreateSpace account, clicked on Cover and started examining my options.

Where's the Excedrin?

I could use their CreateCover program, which makes it all pretty easy. Just one little problem with that -- I can't use my own picture on the front, just their generic stuff. Next!

I could design my own cover. OK, let's look at that. After dizzily plowing through tons of instructions about measurements and calculations and bleeds and layering, I decided to download their cover template. Once I did so, however, I realized I don't have any program in which I can design the damn thing. So I went to the CreateSpace Community and poked around the forums, looking for advice on design programs. Several people recommended downloading Paint.Net, which is free and simple to use. Went to the Paint.Net site, downloaded the program and then went to install it. Fatal error during installation. Arrrgh. I deleted the program and the template.

I could use CS's Professional Cover Service, which starts at $299. I don't think so. Sounds like a ripoff to me.

One of the authors I spoke with, Annabel Joseph, had recommended a designer to me, one who does custom covers for $50. I saw some of her work and it looked fabulous. So I contacted the designer, but she wrote me back today, saying she wasn't taking on any new custom-cover clients at this time and kindly referred me to a list of other possibilities. I looked up each one; they all had one thing in common. Expensive.


It wasn't this complicated when I used Lulu. But that was four years ago. And let's face it -- despite Endart's beautiful caricature, my first book had a pretty amateur, plain-wrap book cover.

I've put out a couple of feelers for possible designers, but at this point, I'm a little stymied. Ah well. All part of the process, I suppose. Meanwhile, one of my two readers has sent me back his edits. They were minor and his feedback was so very gratifying.

Perhaps I need to wrench myself away from this computer and get to the gym. I think I've accomplished as much as I can at the moment.

Hope everyone's having a decent week. Happy Hump Day.


  1. Well, making cover is part of my job. I'm an illustrator, cartoonist and work in edition for years. I'll do it for free if needeed, as a french spanking friend I am. Just send me all instructions on my mail (size, pics and other stuffs), on my blog if you want... And we will be in contact by skype; sharing my screen or anything.


  2. Helllloooooooooooooooooo??? ::knock-knock!:: -- waves hand... graphic designer here (snorts!) ... what do you need dearheart?? I can make it .. and I'll take it out on you when I need a proof reader for "Love Bytes".. :-)

  3. Hi Erica i wish i could help you some how :-( Why do i have to live so freakin far away. there must be something that i could possibly do? Zelle you are so funny hehehe LOL :-) I know you will come up with something COOL you always do, Love you and sending big hugs to you, from your naughty girl Jade xoxo

  4. Stan -- that is a very generous offer; thank you! Unfortunately, I do not have Skype. I'm amazed at the offers and suggestions I've gotten in email since I posted this -- I so love our community!

    Zelle -- check your email, girlfriend! And yes, you know you have a proofreader when the time comes.

    Jade -- not to worry, honey, it will all work out. It's just that things are never quite as simple as you think they're going to be!

  5. Hope you get it all figured out. I just ordered your first book today and can't wait to get it!

  6. Lea -- really? Thank you! :-)

  7. Well Skype is not necessary for working, I use it with other cartoonists, when we need to share graphic works. But just explain me what you want, the size, the title and your pic, I'll do it as well. Mail me, I'll give you an other pro blog I use for my work to see who I am and details of logos, books and other stuffs done in my press book...

  8. Deja vu... Didn't I already comment on this? Freakin Blogger. Guess not all was restored after all. I hope all is working out with your book. I ordered your first book and am waiting for it to get here. Can hardly wait to read it!