A WRITER'S WIT
Sentimentality—that's what we call the sentiment we don't share.
Born October 2, 1904
Images for Your Book
For me it was easy. My life partner, Ken Dixon, has been a visual artist for almost fifty years, and he granted me the exclusive use of one of his most recent images to use in my book cover. Entitled Unfinished Target, the work lends itself to the book’s title, My Long-Playing Records and Other Stories, by presenting a disc-like image that merely suggests the image of an LP or CD. I didn’t wish for the image to be too graphic—with an image of a “record player” or stereo—making it seem more commercial than literary. Not that there’s anything wrong with that; it’s just not the image I wish to project.
On the other hand, if you have no ideas, or if you don’t feel that you are artistically inclined, you can engage CreateSpace to help you. I know two writers who have employed the services of CS and have been happy with the results—even if they did have to wrangle a bit with the staff to get exactly what they wanted. You can also refer to the CreateSpace website to take a look at some examples of covers created by the CS staff. On the same page is a “How It Works” column that more fully explains the process.
One of the freeing aspects about self-publishing is that you maintain control. You may submit images to use for your cover. You will also fill out a questionnaire. Take this task seriously, and use it to let the staff know exactly what you want. You may even wish to sketch a rough idea and let the CS staff bring it to life. They will then create two different covers from which you can select one. You may still wish to tweak the one you select, and CS will work with you to get the cover you want.
At any rate, remember that readers often make a book selection based on an attractive cover. It may contain images, concrete or abstract. The title may feature small or large fonts; same with the author’s name. Whether readers are searching online at Amazon or in a brick-and-mortar store, they all, in some way, consider the cover. So must you as the self-publishing writer.
NEXT TIME: New Yorker Fiction 2014
NEXT WEEK: DIY Publishing 101-E, Considering the Interior