Writing Books/cover design

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Question
Mark,
Thank you for your time.  I am in the process of writing my first novel.  My question is about the cover design of the book.  What is the process for obtaining a cover design for my book?  Thank you.


Answer
Dear Tanya,

Congratulations on the novel. And don't forget to congratulate yourself for answering its call.

As for a cover design, the answer depends on whether you will be seeking an outside publisher or will be publishing it yourself.

If your goal is an outside publisher, focus on the writing. The publisher will take care of all of that.

If you plan to do it yourself, it will depend on what method you use. With a print-on-demand service, they will have a variety of options you can call on.

If you plan to do it all yourself, you'd be best to commission a cover design from someone experienced in book-cover work. As talented as many graphic artists are, a book cover has specific needs and requirements that most graphic artists would not be familiar with.

For a list of book cover designers, check out the relevant appendix in Dan Poynter's Self-Publishing Manual. You can also Google "book cover designers."  Go to their web sites, check out their portfolios and see if any of their work speaks to you, if anything feels as though it's the right flavor and energy for your novel.

I used separate cover designers for each of my two books. Check out those covers at http://lightlinesmedia.com, and if you want to contact either of those designers, send me a follow-up note and I'll send you their contact info.

Remember, the cover is the most important marketing expense you will ever make. Don't skimp on it.

Good luck!
Mark David Gerson
author of "The MoonQuest" and "The Voice of the Muse: Answering the Call to Write"
http://markdavidgerson.com

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Mark David Gerson

Expertise

Happy to answer questions about writing, writer's block, publishing/self-publishing. Can answer general questions, but not available to critique work.

Experience

Published author; have taught writing for 15 years at colleges, universities and community centers in the U.S. and Canada.

Organizations
Southwest Writers New Mexico Book Co-op

Publications
Author of the fantasy adventure, The MoonQuest, and the book of writing inspiration and practice, The Voice of the Muse: Answering the Call to Write. Freelanced full-time as a writer, journalist and editor for more than a decade. Published in a wide range of publications. Free inspirational e-newsletter has 1200 subscribers in more than a dozen countries.

Education/Credentials
Published Author. Published Freelance Writer. More than 15 years of teaching/coaching/consulting.

Awards and Honors
New Mexico Discovery Award 2006; Award-Winning Finalist in Visionary Fiction, the National Best Books 2007 Awards

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