“Don’t judge a book by its cover!” That’s what my mother always used say when I headed into a new situation filled with people I didn’t know. And she’s right – when it comes to people, first impressions are often misleading. But when it comes to actual books, adhering to my mom’s advice is a much tougher task. And for authors, the reality is that an eye-catching book cover design can have a huge impact on sales. (Well, that and Oprah’s Book Club seal of approval. But if you haven’t managed to convince Oprah to endorse your book yet, it’s absolutely critical that your cover be a visual superstar!)
Just like a logo design or website design, you’re going to want to make sure the cover of your book appeals specifically to your target audience. A great example is the cover of 99designs customer Aenghus Chisholme’s book, “AD 491: Merlin the Sorcerer,” which we blogged about yesterday - you can tell exactly what kind of reader he aims to attract. 99designs has been hosting book cover design contests from the very start – and just broke out a separate book cover design category this year – and have been blown away by the amazing diversity of work our design community has created (and the enormous range of topics our author-customers have explored in their writing). Here are a just a handful that stood out – may they inspire you in your search for the perfect packaging for your literary works of art!
Winning design by AE.Nciola
You can see the 99designs book cover design contest here.
Winning design by Mac Arvy
With a raucously comic flare and razor-sharp wit, Chester Wong’s memoir explores what it was like to be an Asian-American officer in wartime U.S. Army Special Forces.
Winning design by Venanzio
In his debut novel, journalist Phil Dobbie draws on his frustrated years in telecommunications to form a rational explanation for why the corporate world is so out of control.
Winning design by rejenne
Finnish missionary Marja Lindquist’s uplifting book tells the story of Christian Haitians’ enduring faith in the midst of turmoil and chaos. Lindquist and her husband have been doing missionary work for 30 years, including 20 in the most dangerous slums in Haiti; all proceeds go toward their efforts.
Winning design by anyash
This expose by Canadian investigative journalist Donna Laframboise is the product of two years of research into the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Its conclusion: almost nothing we’ve been told about the IPCC is true. Laframboise, who blogs at No Frakking Consensus, will be promoting “The Delinquent Teenager” in an Australian speaking tour in July 2012.
Winning design by mugna
Designer, coder and writer Jared Tame takes you inside the minds of 33 of today’s leading startup founders – including those behind Grooveshark, reddit, foursquare, Airbnb and Wufoo – in this honest and candid collection of interviews.
Winning design by mattkin
Chris Moss, who has been married for 16 years to a man who does not share her Christian faith, explores how women can successfully be ”spiritually single.”
Winning design by mugna
Nigerian human resources expert and writer Nana Kwebena Yeboah offers college students and new graduates a play-by-play of what recruiters are looking for and offers practical tips for enhancing your chances of landing a dream job.
Winning design by flgraphix.
In Race Against the Machine, MIT economists Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee economists Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee explore the role technology is playing – and will play in the future – in the world economy. Drawing on research by their team at MIT’s Center for Digital Business, they explore how recent advances that used to be the stuff of science fiction impact us all: computers that drive cars in traffic, translate between human languages effectively, and beat the best human Jeopardy! players.
Winning design by kimejoe
In The Hope You Need, bestselling author Rick Warren explores the deeper meaning of each phrase in The Lord’s Prayer – the best-known and most-loved prayer in history – to help readers uncover the keys to their identity, security, clarity, stability, integrity, serenity, liberty and destiny.
You can see the Hope You Need Book Cover design contest here.