Welcome to episode 20 of Publish Your Purpose: An Author’s Journey.
In this episode we cover –
- The ins and outs of cover designs and what to consider.
- Pros and Cons of 99 Designs
- The Amazingly talented Lisa Knight has joined Team PYP
- The unique relationship between an Author and Designer
- Accountability + Collaboration = Brilliant Beauty
- Working with a designer and the importance of flexibility
- It’s not just the Cover, it’s the spine and back as equally important
- Bottom line: This is the Fun Stuff, relish in the moment.
The Publish Your Purpose Podcast: An Author’s Journey features the unique relationship between an author and their publisher. This podcast follows author, Mark David Gibson, through the publishing process of his memoir “Served in Silence.” Alongside him you’ll hear from Publish Your Purpose Press Founder and CEO, Jenn T. Grace, as she navigates Mark through this journey. This authentic, empathetic, and at times comedic duo will take you on the journey from having an idea in your head to holding a book in your hands. You’ll go through all of the emotional ups and downs with Mark as this podcast covers his experience in real time. You’ll learn how to be better prepared when you set out to write your story. Whether you are writing a memoir or any non-fiction where a piece of your story is shared, you’ll be better equipped for success after having listened to this show.
Jenn and Mark have volunteered and donated their time. If you’d like to support the show on Patreon you can do so for just a couple of dollars a month, which is less than a cup of coffee! Your contribution will help with the hosting and transcription of the show. Support us on Patreon at Patreon.com/PublishYourPurpose.
Music provided in this episode was provided by www.bensound.com.
Publish Your Purpose
Jenn: We are done with the Served in Silence manuscript. We’ve done with the editing. We’ve now moved into the fun stuff; the cover design. So we have your cover. It’s already been designed for quite some time. We also already have a proof copy of the book in hands. It’s taking all I have not to share it with everyone. You specifically don’t want to share your cover just yet. This is a little bit the reverse of what we advise people to do, but you’re waiting until your launch. What is your rhyme and reason behind that?
Mark: I was really focused on the manuscript during the Author’s Academy. It was fun to learn in the Academy, but still put my head down and finish my manuscript. This was one of those times. In the Author’s Academy you got to learn about developing a cover and what that looks like. The homework experience of shopping at a bookstore or on-line – what is attractive to you? What colors are really good to you? I enjoyed this part of the process.
What we thought about doing and customizing it for Served in Silence… I wanted to do a test to help me get to the finish line for the cover. You may remember we did a Facebook Live event for my cover party where I was able to take the finalist (from the national survey we did on the platform and Facebook) and I hosted an event at my home in Atlanta where we brought people in to see all of the wonderful designs that we received. The thought behind it was, considering the great response we got from the cover party, we wanted to make the launch extra special. That’s why we wanted to unveil the cover at the time of the launch. Now we’re laser focused on March 31st and the big launch of the book.
Jenn: We are all systems go. We are a solid six weeks ahead of deadline on your book. It’s unheard of in the publishing industry! We are so close to going live and it’s exciting! We have about a month and that’s a HUGE amount of time and we’re pretty much done.
I want to share a little bit about what we advise in the Author Academy as the process for getting a cover design and then get your feedback of your experience.
About halfway through the Academy at about week six or seven, we start talking about the cover. For me, I really appreciate the 99 Designs platform. However, I have a moral conflict with it sometimes because you have hundreds of designers (sometimes) doing the design or mock-up for free that are competing with each other for you to pick the winner. The great part about it is that you get the diversity of options. It’s not just having one designer giving you a lot of variations on exactly the same design. Some designers have a very specific style that they just add different elements to and other designers are brilliant and are able to hand you a bunch of designs that look nothing alike. I really like 99 Designs because you get good diversity and range of options. A lot of times you don’t really know what you’re looking for going into it; especially with covers. I hear so often “I’ll know it when I see it.” It’s not helpful when I’m trying to convey criteria to a designer! We have to provide parameters. In the Academy we provide very clear parameters around “these are the things you want to be thinking about for designing your cover… Your preferences for fonts, colors, imagery, examples of other covers you like, etc. are things you want to be thinking about.
While you were in the Academy, after you signed an agreement to have us publish your book, we opted to go the 99 Designs route to get your cover done.
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