Considering that you’re reading this, it’s safe to assume you’ve successfully written your own book. That’s a massive achievement in itself; congratulations. However, now it’s time to summarize your entire book into a meaningful book cover, and that’s why you need some creative book cover ideas.
Hiring a book cover designer is all well and good, but they will only be able to bring it to life if they understand your book like you do. That means the idea, vision, and illustration should be the product of your creativity. That graphic designer will only make it come to life.
Don’t worry about making it eye-catching enough because that can lead you to focus on the wrong elements. The best book cover is always something that reflects the book, its tone, and gets the reader ready.
In this article, we’ll go over some interesting book cover ideas that will give you the design inspiration to bring your creative book cover to life.
Let’s get started.
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Why Do Book Covers Matter?
Catching the reader’s eye is part of what a book cover does; the truth is that an impactful book cover can very much be the difference between the reader buying the book and not buying it.
That entails that the cover art should be able to communicate what the reader should expect, to some level at least.
For example, a children’s book needs to have bright colors, cartoonish illustrations, and outlined characters. You can’t expect to use a minimalistic stock photo with a Serif font title for a children’s book cover. It doesn’t make sense.
Your book cover will be the first direct look into your book’s story. It builds the reader’s perception of the book – everything from the style to the color and typography matters.
Furthermore, there are a few things that your front cover should include. That includes the book’s title, author name, and the design you’re going for. Other than that, depending on what design you choose, you can also include a subtitle, quote, review, and publishing details.
It’s not that complicated to figure out what you need for a good book cover. Here are a few things you can keep in mind.
- If you’re already a published author, you should continue with the theme you’ve been going with.
- The type of content matters. For example, sci-fi books need some kind of image to showcase the environment; in fact, most non-fiction books do.
- Using key themes of the story helps set a precedent.
- You can use the genre to establish a design style.
- Taking the target audience and where the book will be sold into consideration is always a good idea.
Keep in mind that a great book cover summarizes all these elements.
Amazing Book Cover Ideas for Inspiration
Whether you want a professional book cover with stock images or a creative one with your own design, you will need some inspiration. You can always check out the works of artists like Peter Mendelsund, but you should focus more on your genre and story.
For example, if your book is about high school drama and targeted towards young adults and teenagers, it may be wise to use creative design elements. Alternatively, if you’ve written a self-help book, you might want to keep it simple.
Therefore, it depends on the subject matter, the book’s genre, and your own design style.
The following are a few different design styles that encompass most book cover designs.
1. Hand-Drawn Covers
Hand-drawn covers in an age of graphic design, e-books, and Kindles are a breath of fresh air. The introduction of e-books paved the way for thousands of new books from indie writers.
The downside of that was that a lot of them relied on book cover templates, readymade color schemes, and stock vectors.
It affects originality and the creative process when the majority goes toward a specific method. That’s why books with their own covers tend to get a positive outlook.
Even with e-books, unique hand-drawn covers get more attention. As long you get the ebook cover size right for popular readers like the Amazon Kindle, you’ll be getting a lot of downloads.
All in all, a DIY book cover look always plays well with the readers, giving them a unique look into the author’s imagination.
2. Bold Covers
We all love kinetic typography because it looks cool, but it can’t work on a book cover. The next best thing to it? It’s big and bold typography.
Bold covers tend to have the book’s title across the entire page. It has become more popular over the years. However, one might ask, what’s so special about it?
There are two ways to approach a book, either you know what you’re going for and find that book or you look through a variety of them, often starting by looking at their covers.
Big and bold typography often shouts at onlookers for attention. Usually, it works. If you go through ten book covers and there’s one with a big, bold title, there’s a good chance you’ll read that book’s title and go over its summary.
Furthermore, mixing the bold cover with a good color scheme adds to its appeal. It’s a great mix between simplicity and over-emphasis.
3. Minimalistic Covers
The minimalism movement has gained a lot of ground in recent years. We can see it almost everywhere, from graphic design to home design.
Most people have a vague understanding of what minimalism actually is. To sum it up in a concise way, minimalism is the art of saying a lot by not saying much and choosing your elements wisely.
In a way, in all its simplicity, there’s nothing else to add and nothing left to take away.
A novel is usually a common example of minimalistic book covers. That’s usually because authors don’t want to give anything away except maybe the theme of the book.
There’s usually a lot of white space in minimalistic covers, the only difference being the color used for the background and the minimalist fonts.
4. Silhouette Covers
The mysterious silhouettes always strike some sort of curiosity among readers. That feeling of ubiquity and the unknown tends to be a driving force for readers to start and keep on reading.
For some books, it’s a matter of who is in the silhouette or who’s that shadowy figure. In others, it’s a commentary on a connection, maybe between the main character and someone else.
Maybe it’s a young woman and a guy; the first instinct of a reader would be that’s it’s a romantic interest. But, it remains a mystery because the story can go either way from there, and that’s the mystery that catches the reader’s attention.
One might say that the silhouette is overused at this point. However, you can still make an impact using a unique approach, intelligent lettering, and good old-fashioned creativity.
5. Simple Illustration and Typography Covers
At times, a mix of styles is exactly what a book cover needs. Using simple typography to complement relevant illustrations can go a long way.
A balance between the right set of elements and the typography tends to highlight the illustration that showcases part of the book’s theme.
There’s a good chance that one of your favorite books uses this style of a book cover. In fact, a lot of New York Times bestsellers have used this style.
It’s one of the best ways to create stunning art to capture a reader’s imagination.
6. Hand-Written Title Covers
The thing about hand-written book covers is that they create trust. It creates a sense of sincerity and radiates warmth.
It’s also a great way of communicating the author’s personality. For example, for some books, it actually explains the tone and setting of the book.
If the handwriting is cartoonish, we can expect a flimsy story with feel-good moments. With italic handwriting, it may be an artsy book.
In any case, the handwriting speaks of the quirkiness, originality, or creativeness of the book.
7. Fantasy Covers
Fantasy books have always been in demand, and a lot of people like the book covers that accompany them.
Typically, you always have two extremes in fantasy book covers. You can either go for realistic fantasy covers or abstract covers.
Realistic fantasy book covers are good at setting up a mood because they picture exactly what’s being described in the book.
Abstract covers tend to create an idea in the minds of the readers. Using that idea and the book itself, readers can build up their own versions of the story world.
8. Contrast-Heavy Covers
Contrast is another great tone-setter. It has the power of setting the mood because if it’s dark, you can tell that it’s going to be a gritty story.
Dull colors usually mean that it’s going to be a dramatic story. Bright colors suggest that it’s a happy and jolly story.
Whatever contrast you choose, it would reflect the tone you want to set for your book.
9. Whimsical Covers
Whimsical book covers are extremely fun and creative, but they only go with specific genres of books.
For example, whimsical book covers work great for children’s books. They’re especially useful because it allows children to create an idea of the characters and environment they will be reading about.
Other examples may be an art-based book that uses whimsical covers.
These fun posters provide a behind-the-scenes look into the writing and illustration process of the author.
10. Single Object Covers
Clunky book covers don’t tend to do well with some target audiences. That’s why it’s crucial to know your audience, where your book will sell, and what works for the people in those demographics.
That’s where the single object focus book covers come in. They tend to have a plain background with a single object in focus, along with the title.
It can be the thumbnail for the book, any single object that comes in focus in the story, or something completely random.
Use Book Cover Ideas to Design Your Own Cover Today
There’s no tutorial or single process to creating your book cover. Each book requires a different type of cover; all you can do is decide on a theme.
If you manage to design an extremely good book cover, there’s a good chance it’ll be shared on various social media sites, giving you additional publicity.
That’s why you should take inspiration from book cover ideas that are preferred by people nowadays.