I just read an excellent post by author Sandra Hutchison about her journey(s) to find the perfect book covers for her works. If you’re an indie author, it’s definitely worth reading her article. She also makes some great points about copyright that you’ll want to check out. For example, did you know that tattoos can be copyrighted?
In the guide that my fellow-writer Lisa Logan and I published in 2018, we have a section on creating book covers and another section on copyright. We give good overviews of both topics, but I would also suggest checking out Sandra’s article and recommended sources for a more in-depth look at copyright and ways to create covers.
What I like about Sandra’s article is that she explores all the different ways you can create covers — from self made to pre-made to professionally designed — and she even combines some of those methods.
If you’re like me and love the process of getting your hands dirty and creating your own book cover, you’ll want to pause and think first. Is that “free” clip art from the Internet really copyright-free? If you’re photographing a model for your cover, does he/she have too much skin showing? Advertisers can have strict “decency” rules that sometimes defy logic!
What has been your experience with creating or choosing book covers for your work? If you work in the publishing industry, please feel free to share your insights, too!