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4 Tips to Help Choose the Right Book Designer

You've written your book and had it meticulously edited and revised until the manuscript is perfect. Now it’s time to find the right book designer. Here are some tips to help with that process.


Tip 1: Make Sure They Specialize in Book Design


A good graphic designer has the skills to combine imagery and typography to create the desired effect, but designing books is a very specific skill set.  


An experienced book designer also knows how to design your book to meet industry standards. If it doesn't, then bookstores and readers will be less likely to see you as a professional. 


They know how to apply graphic design skills unique to books, such as creating a cover that draws in readers and sparks sales, making the interior organized and easy to read, and knowing what bookstores and online retailers expect.  


Having a designer who isn’t familiar with book design could lead to problems that crop up at the printing stage or result in lost opportunities for sales.



Tip 2: Look at Their Typical Genre


It is important to choose a book designer with experience in your genre. Have they designed books like yours?


If all their books have a sci-fi look to them, and your book is a nonfiction book with business advice, then this designer may not know how to design a look that attracts your market. 


Look at their website and/or portfolio. Are the books they’ve designed similar to yours? Do their designs evoke the emotion you’re conveying in your book? Do they attract the same target reader as your book?


While a good designer should be able to create a good design, it may not be right for your book.


Tip 3: Do They Have Enough Experience?


It’s important to make sure your designer has the appropriate experience to create a professional-looking book.


Find out how many years of experience the designer has and how many books they have designed. 


Do they understand how to properly format books for paperback, hardcover, and eBook? 


Have they created books for a printer, Amazon’s KDP, or IngramSpark, whichever one you are using to produce your books?


An experienced designer has also worked with other service providers such as editors and marketing professionals and can usually help guide you through other aspects of self-publishing.



Tip 4: Listen to Your Gut


Once you’ve narrowed it down, contact two or three potential designers and set up a meeting.


A good designer is interested in learning about the goals for your book and your target market as well as what the book is about. If they don’t ask these questions, they may be inexperienced, or they don’t intend to take the time to create a design that is truly right for your book.


As you meet with them, think about what your instincts are telling you. This isn’t a time to second-guess and doubt yourself.


You’re putting your trust in them and investing in their expertise. If it just doesn’t feel right, you may not want to hire them.



You have put your heart and soul into writing your book. Don’t sell yourself short by not investing in the right designer to make it shine.

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