Judging a Book by its Cover – Necessary for E-books?

I find the biggest obstacle for e-book authors is the public’s perception. Getting a book published in print has always been a major milestone in and of itself. Authors automatically received credit just for having their words out there for the public to see. Yet, these days, anyone is able to go online and self-publish an e-book. This is why I believe e-book readers have to be more critical and likely to judge a book by its cover. Below are points I pay special attention to when approaching the design of an e-book cover:

  1. An e-book cover is a tiny thumbnail. You can’t hold it in your hands, flip through its pages, or usually even scan a back cover. That tiny thumbnail has to say a lot, really grab attention amongst a sea of other thumbnails.
  2. What’s in a name? No, I’m not speaking about the title. It’s generally obvious to authors and book cover designers alike that the title should have an impact. However, the author’s name is often neglected, especially with e-books. But think about what order you see text when selecting a book from the library shelf, or better yet, when viewing a mixed display from across the room. For example, Stephen King’s name stops me in my tracks. It doesn’t matter that I’ve read Pet Sematary a dozen times or most of his books for that matter. I have to pause when I see his name, just in case. Just in case he published a new book I somehow missed. Now maybe Stephen King doesn’t evoke such fanaticism in you, but if you’re a reader, I’m willing to bet some author does. The key is to accept that you just might be one of those authors to someone else. Therefore, go big and go bold! So what if you’re not Stephen King, yet. Your name deserves fair real estate on the cover, no need to hide it in a dark corner of the already tiny thumbnail.

 

 

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