Whether you design your own cover or use a cover designer, the decision of which cover to attach to your precious manuscript is up to you. You can, of course, follow the advice of your cover designer and be done with it. Not a bad idea, actually, your designer probably knows what he’s talking about. But not a very realistic idea. You want a cover you love to be on the book you sweat tears over.
One of the most difficult things I’ve had to learn as an authorpreneur is this: Your book cover shouldn’t be your favorite picture. Let me repeat that: Don’t choose your favorite picture!
Okay, Dena, I hear you saying, you’ve finally lost it! Why can’t I choose my favorite picture? I wrote the book! I know what the cover should look like.
Yeah, that’s what I thought, too. Recently, however, I decided I was going to not only write books but actually make enough money selling books to live on. The first thing I did to ensure my plan succeeds was to read zillions of blogs, listen to tons of podcasts, and take a super expensive marketing course. They all say the same thing: Your cover needs to rock if you want to sell books.
How does your cover rock? It needs to be catchy, look professional, and match your genre. It’s that last point I was having a problem with. I hate being pushed into a ‘genre-corner’ (You can’t put baby in a corner, darn it!) My books appeal to readers of several genres. I don’t need to genre match my cover. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. My books do not appeal to every single person who can read English. Once I got over that, I took a good look at my cover designs and realized – gulp! – several of them didn’t meet the ‘match your genre’ requirement.
I ended up having new covers designed for four (4!) of my novels. I loved each and every one of those original designs (well, one I didn’t love, love). The trick is to find a cover design you still like – even it if might not be your favorite. The result? I started selling more books.