For the past fourteen months the front cover of my novel was a white page, with ‘Mrs God, by Mark Evans’ printed in the centre of it. It was there on Day #1 and, up to yesterday, it was there on Day #428.
Then, today, there was an email in my inbox entitled ‘Mrs. G’. My graphic designer had sent back his work on the front cover. All I can say is that you can scrimp on the editing of your book and you can be frugal about its launch, but it’s crucial that you invest in a professional when it comes to your book’s cover.
I design newspaper pages for a living. I even collected a national award on behalf of my newspaper after we won for best design. So it was only natural that I would have a few ‘ideas’ for the front cover. I cringe now, thinking about them. Let’s call them amateurish and leave it at that. Anthony Cotter at CoolGrey is a great friend of mine and has read my book. At least, that’s what he had been telling me. When I opened up the email he sent me I knew that he had been telling the truth all along.
His cover design shows me that he gets the book and it will allow others who see it to get it too. It’s amazing how the whole project suddenly leaped into hyperspace once I had my book cover. I know the old adage about passing judgment on the interior of novels based solely on their exteriors, but I couldn’t wait to show it off so people could get a sense of what my book contains!
There are books of which the backs and covers are by far the best parts – Charles Dickens
Dickens was right. What lies between my book’s back and cover will be judged by its readers. The truth is that we all judge things firstly by their covers: books, people, smartphones, movies, tinned food. If you’re writing a book, spend some time and effort and your hard-earned cash on getting a professional designer to give you the cover your work deserves. Your book will thank you for it.