Designing good covers for books is a distinct art form, I’ve discovered. I’ve been an artist in a previous life and thought I could do it myself but the simple fact is that I can’t. When I look at the work produced by the professionals, they make my paltry efforts look totally pedestrian. I chose Robin Lustig http://www.gobookcoverdesign.com/ because I liked the visual impact of her work (she’s a female robin not a cockrobin). Here’s the process:
1. Email her and she’ll come back with the Ts and Cs and ask you to give him a synopsis of your book and any ideas that you may have for a cover.
2. She then takes your ideas, throws them in the bin and comes up with her own. It’s at this point that you realise that covers have to be designed by a professional. In my case she gave me a couple of choices and they look good. I selected one.
3. Robin sends you the links to the pictures that make up his mockup. They are at Dreamstime, http://www.dreamstime.com/. You have to pay for the images but they’re not expensive. Mine cost about $40 for three. You download them in large format, royalty-free. The files are around 5MB.
4. Send them to her as email attachments or you can use Dropbox (http://db.tt/psAirBA).
5. She won’t do any more work until you have paid a deposit of $80 and I did this by phone (or you can use PayPal). The cover may be done within this cost (he charges $80/hour) but any additional work is charged an the basis of 15 minute chunks. Normal cost is $80-120 per cover.
6. She then produces the covers and this takes around 5-7 working days. I’ll post them when they arrive. Can’t wait.