We need to talk about ebook cover

How to create an ebook cover? An ebook cover is one of the several steps of the editorial project. Once the story is written and its production is on process, the design team has the mission to create an attractive cover. And I am going to show you two examples of ebook covers and how was the process to create them. But first let’s look back in time.

For long time the manuscript was only the papers, with no cover, with nothing that identified all the papers together and worst, nothing to protect the material. It was about the century XIX that the first book covers were created and that was possible because new technologies arose that time. Since then all the process to develop a beautiful, attractive and stunning book cover has been explored more and more.

As I said in the article What’s After The Writing, all elements such as image, type of font are important to create an ebook cover and that’s what we are going to see here.

So, before create the art of your ebook, is helpful write a briefing about the story. For example, the editor and the designer must talk about the title’s story and its genre, if it is about a fiction ebook, an education one, a romance or any other kind of genre. Sometimes an ebook can have more than one genre, for example, romance and historical story. So in this case you have two kinds of public target, one who likes romance, and other who appreciate history. Now the publish house needs to think in an art that portrays these two kinds of genre to attract your audience.

Another useful idea is to know a little about the author’s personality, because his work is how he expresses to the world, his ideas, thoughts and feelings, and the editor or the designer must try to capture all these things. I’m going to show an example about how to use the author’s personality on ebook cover. We are getting there.

As you can see, the ebook cover begins even before its production. It’s necessary to collect as many details as you can. Everything that concerns the ebook is relevant and it cannot be denied.

Now let’s take a look, in practice. Here we have an ebook called A Cartomante (Fortune Teller in direct translation), written by Machado de Assis, one of the world’s best-known writers, who was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1839 and left an extraordinary legacy for literature. This tale talks about a love triangle that involves three characters: Camilo, Rita and Vilela. Camilo and Vilela are old friends and when they become adult they follow a different way in life. Vilela married Rita, and after many years Camilo met them again and the three begins to live together in the same house. That’s when Camilo mother’s die and Rita begin to take care the heart of Camilo. In meanwhile, Vilela suspect about them. To be sure about Camilo’s feelings, Rita consults a fortune teller. So, the story is about love, faith, beliefs and you can’t wait to see what happens in the end of the story. Now let’s look at the ebook cover: the picture is a house.

A Cartomante, written by Machado de Assis. Published by Editora Astronauta, 2015

But why a house and not a Fortune teller? Because as you read the story, the apex is when Vilela send a letter to Camilo asking him to go to their home as soon as possible, but something happens along the way, and that’s when Camilo sees the fortune teller’s house. Camilo has no faith in anything, but as he sees the fortune teller’s house he become curious and want to know the true about what is happening in his life. So, as the tale is a suspense mixed with passion and it told in 1869 the ebook cover is configured on yellow/sepia color with some tone shades. These shades are important for the suspense and allow us to insert the text title (A Cartomante). Thus, we can now talk about the font, an essential element in design. This font was selected because the letter T remembers a Cross, and the tale is about beliefs, faith, and love, and because of the passion present in the story the color red was chosen. Once all the elements are together you have an ebook cover that express the story.

The second example is the ebook cover of Terras dos Encantados — A Jornada do Círculo (Enchanted Land — The Journey of the Circle in direct translation), written by Ana Santana. This ebook is a fantasy, spiritual and the same time realistic story. It tells about Nina and Lorena, two girls who live in different worlds and they must find the Book of Future, which is a manuscript that will help them to save their worlds from destruction. Now, let’s take a look at the ebook cover: we have a girl where you cannot see her face clearly, so the reader doesn’t know which girl is the main character: Nina or Lorena. In Addition, these two girls have to face an old prophecy that will change their life, and only after this prophecy fulfill that will be revealed who they really are.

Terras dos Encantados: A Jornada do Círculo, written by Ana Santana. Editora Astronauta, 2016

Let’s see the background where you see a forest and a mountain, two important elements in the story. As I said above, this is a fantasy and spiritual story, so nature is present as element of spirituality and also to create suspense. The title is above of the ebook cover to represent the border of the two worlds, and the font for the author Ana Santana is soft, because she is a poetic writer. So, in this art you have the main elements of the story and a soft and beautiful font that represents the personality of the writer Ana Santana.

Bringing all the elements mentioned together we can create great arts for amazing stories. So I hope I could help you to think in your next ebook cover.