Friday, April 7, 2017

A new cover resource for Indies

In the past, we've discussed some of the options Indie authors have when it comes to creating and buying covers. The tab at the top of this page links to all my articles on the subject. Following this advice, and doing a little research and practice on your own, can lead to some very attractive book covers at little or no cost. But there is a drawback: You have to do all the work. You've got to invest time and maybe a lot of it. If you don't have much time, designing and making your own covers might not be a very effective use of what little you have. Maybe you should be writing instead?

So how can you get a decent cover without dropping hundreds of dollars or wasting weeks of personal time learning new software and cover design techniques? Well, I recently learned about a new service called Canva.com that might be what you're looking for.

Canva has a simple, easy to use interface. It offers dozens of quality, customizable book cover designs. You start by creating an account (for free) and then you choose a template for an ebook cover. The panel on the left will allow you to choose from various layouts, background designs, and so forth. They have a vast assortment of background images, some free, some at a minimal fee, or you can upload an image of your own. (I especially like that part. You don't have to rely on whatever images they have, you can buy or produce an image somewhere else, and then use this interface for customization.)

Drop down menus allow you to change fonts and do further customization. If you stay close to the original design, you really can make a nice-looking cover with almost no effort required. And when you come up with a design you like, you can download it directly to your computer. A multi-use license is only $10. They have other licensing options as well, some cheaper, some a bit more pricey. You'll have to read through the specifics to decide what's best for you, but I think most will probably choose the $10 option. That's a pretty good price for a professional-looking ebook cover. But don't take my word for it. Check them out and see what you think.

This service isn't just for ebooks. You can design business card logos, advertisements, letterhead and resumes, and even restaurant menus. You can design your own brand logo to use with your publishing business (or whatever) and you can also create a team with other users to share ideas. In other words, this is an all-around graphics design program that comes with most of the work already done for you.

Disclaimer: I know this sounds a little like an advertisement, so let me reassure you: I'm not affiliated with Canva in any way, and I'm not saying they're the only option or the best option. I don't know if there are other services like this out there. I just happened across this site and I was impressed by it. I wanted to share it with you because I think for many of us, it's a simple, viable, inexpensive option. I may even use this site myself for some future ebook covers. Again, you don't have to take my word for it. It's free to set up an account and try it out for yourself.  Here's the link:

Canva  

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