You’re a designer now. Can you feel that surge of creative genius?
Thanks again for joining DIY Book Covers! Please go ahead and get started with the downloads and resources below. This site just got a major facelift, so let me know if anything weird happens. I’m still organizing all the materials and tools; the online cover tool is taking longer than expected to finish, but once it’s done I’ll complete all the training videos.
You’ll be getting an email confirmation from me, make sure you hit the ‘subscribe’ button in it so I can let you know when new samples and other resources are available. I’m also going to send some tips on book design, publishing and marketing that will help you defeat the competition and make your book a bestseller.
I understand that right now the sales page oversells and you may be disappointed that everything isn’t already finished, I’m more than happy to refund you – or you can wait until more resources are finished to see how everything works. I’ll extend the refund to six months, to make it easier for you to stick around, and I can refund at any time later on if you aren’t happy with the materials. Thanks!
Below you’ll find a bunch of resources for making beautiful book covers in MS Word. Most of these links are to .zip folders; you’ll need to unpack/extract the .zip folder before you can see the contents. Once you open the Word files, things may not look right if you don’t have the same fonts installed that I used, so try changing the fonts.
Short answers for everything you’re trying to do, including swapping pictures, adding gradients and text effects, spacing fonts, working with layers, adding shadows and color washes, and saving your cover.
This package is really large and will take time to download; it includes 80 Fiction templatesand a font list. You’ll need to learn the ropes before you feel comfortable using Word in this way – changing the text should be easy, but you’ll probably need the cheat sheet often to figure everything else out. If you can’t download the zip file, you can also try downloading individual files from This Dropbox Folder.
This package is really large and will take time to download; it includes 70 Non-Fiction templatesand a font list. Non-fiction covers should be much easier to finish, since there will probably just be one or two main images. If you can’t download the full zip file, you can try downloading individual files from This Dropbox Folder.
Making full print covers for Createspace is a little tricky, but this guide and sample templates will help. You can make a full print cover that looks pretty good, but you need to get familiar with the features in MS Word, and use quality fonts and images.
Last year I made a WordPress plugin that encourages readers to share your best writing on Facebook and Twitter; unfortunately I don’t think it’s still working with Facebook, but it’s still pretty cool. If you want to try it out, download the zip file, then upload the zip file straight into your WordPress admin to install.
This package is light on layers, heavy on templates – it’s got everything you need but assumes you’re starting from a finished cover file, so you’re just importing layers. There are also instructions for ordering postcards and business cards (and how to use them). There’s also images for ads, and Facebook and Twitter profiles/Timelines.
It includes where to find fonts and images, common mistakes and pitfalls, basics of fiction and non-fiction, how to do research and more. It should get you up to speed on the theory of book cover design
We’ll cover the basics and make some sample covers; watch the videos first, then read the guide, then play with the sample templates. Just changes the fonts and add new pictures, then save as PDF and convert to JPG.
TEMPLATES FOR THE ONLINE COVER DESIGN TOOL
I’m really excited about the online cover tool – it took 6 months to build and isn’t perfect, but it has most of the functionality of Photoshop and lets me make some really awesome covers. I’m building templates now and will upload them as soon as I can.
Here are some you can play with now, but they may be a little buggy; I’ll replace them as soon as the software is 100% finished and redo these.
It seems my main competition are a few other sites that offer premade covers in Photoshop (some of them are pretty good, others… not so much). I want to make DIY Book Covers the “no brainer” option, so I will also be making some Photoshop cover templates you can use. As a reminder, these templates aren’t to be used ‘as is’ – they are starting points so that you can start strong, change the text and images, and make a cover much stronger than you would have done starting from scratch. Here’s the link to the first set, I’ll be adding more throughout the year. I’ll also be adding some templates soon for making business cards, bookmarks, headers and promotion materials in Photoshop; along with some video training so you can get started quickly.
(The link is to a dropbox folder; the files are TIFF but if you open them with photoshop you’ll see the layers).
BOOK FORMATTING TEMPLATES
Here’s a package of 15 interior book design layouts, for MS Word and InDesign, along with instructions for use. Formatting can be tricky – try to keep it simple: start with a clean, minimal design, change the chapter heading to match the title font on your cover, and possibly add a tiny bit of flair. But don’t overdo it.
These templates are actually a little overdone, for most books it’s better to keep it simple. Getting the headers, footers and page numbers to display correctly – usually left or right align on the outside edges, and not to show at all on chapter start pages or front and back matter – can be tricky. Formatting is something I always outsource, even though I can do it myself. I recommend starting with one of these templates but hiring someone on Fiverr.com to finish and polish it off. It will save you lots of time and headache.
There are 15 different templates, and you’ll need to install the fonts to see them properly. If you change a font you’ll need to update the style for that element. (So if you change the chapter headings and style, rather than go through and do it for every chapter heading, just right click and ‘update style’ and they will all be updated automatically).
I also had two ebook conversion tools made for me, that have been in limbo until I decided what to do with them.
Right now I put them on www.publishxpress.com. For one of them, you need to copy+paste each chapter separately. The other is a one-click upload of your Word doc. They both work pretty well, though you’ll need to set up your Word file the right way. I’ll be adding more guides and resources for ebook publishing to this site as well.
There are some tutorial videos here; I’ll add more to diybookformats.com later. (I give away most of my training/how-to stuff for free – but as members you alone get the valuable design templates).