Effective Book Cover Design – Thomas Umstattd Jr. interviews Kirk DouPonce…

Thomas Umstattd Jr. interviews Kirk DouPonce

on Author Media:

Brandon Sanderson is famous for his epic fantasy series called Mistborn. Sanderson is one of my favorite authors, but up until a few years ago, I had read all his novels except for the Mistborn series.

I could not get past the boring covers, and apparently, neither could a lot of other fans.

The book covers were terrible. They made the books look boring even to Sanderson’s major fans. The most tragic part was that the covers lied.

The Mistborn books were amazing! Some readers would argue that they are the best books for new Sanderson fans to begin reading.

After some of my friends forced me to get past the covers, I discovered the books were some of my favorite Brandon Sanderson books.

If bad book covers can keep super fans from giving a good book a chance, imagine how strangers who’ve never read a Sanderson book would feel about the covers.

When Sanderson realized the covers were such an obstacle to sales and they were keeping readers from enjoying his books, he had the covers redesigned. In fact, they’ve been redesigned several times.

What difference does the cover make?

A good book cover causes a reader to pull the book off the shelf. Online, a good cover causes a reader to click to learn more.

But bad covers undermine all your other promotional activities. A weak cover makes your emails, ads, and bookmarks less effective. It can even undermine the word-of-mouth marketing that might otherwise work in your favor.

When you’re publishing a book, you should never ever skimp on the editing or the cover design.

Indie authors have full control over their covers, and traditional authors often have some say in the cover design. Whether you’re an indie or traditional author, you need a good book cover.

How do you get a good book cover?

To guide us through the dark forest of book cover design, I interviewed Kirk DouPonce. He studied traditional illustration in college and spent the first decade of his career as a graphic designer in the publishing industry. He’s designed over 1,000 book covers for publishers like Enclave Publishing, Barbour, Harper Collins, Penguin Group, Simon and Schuster, and many indie authors.

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