Ten Ways to Judge a Book by its Cover
- The spine stands out with an arresting color and compelling lettering.
- The overall design captures the personality of the book.
- Images tell part of the story.
- The title pops off the background and is large enough to read from a distance.
- It must convert well to black and white for one color advertising.
- A tiny image on the Internet must show up.
- The font suggests the time period, setting or genre of the book.
- Fewer words in the title are better.
- Colors work to suggest a mood (dramatic, antique, stark, modern, scary.)
- Consider: would you pick this book up if you saw it on a Barnes and Noble display table?
- Colored title on a black background—it won't show up in black & white.
- A detailed picture of a character—let the reader's imagination supply that.
- Meaningless clutter—focus on a strong theme.
"Readers will only give a book a few seconds of consideration. It must wrench their attention away from thousands of other volumes . . . In a bookstore, most books are shelved spine out, so this narrow strip is your first sales tool. Next, book browsers look at the book's front. Your cover is your billboard. If it interests them, they'll turn to the back. If they're still intrigued, the first few sentences will receive their consideration."
There's so much more to publishing a book than just writing it!
Does the title show up in black and white?
Will the tiny image on Amazon catch anyone's attention?
With several choices, some direction from Kenna (head of the cover design department of Tate Publishing) and input from Mark (my marketing guru) Son of a Gun is getting dressed up for its debut on the shelves. I'm thrilled with its cover story!
How do you decide to buy a book?