How to make a Book Cover in wordMaking a book cover in words
In late 2013, I released a set of DIY book cover artwork in Microsoft Word and revolutionised publication with a tutorial for creating stunning book artwork in an easy-to-use application you're already used to. It took me a while to find out how to convert the front cover for Createspace or other pods vendors into a complete printed cover.
I' ve published a DIY book cover guidebook a few month ago, but I share it with you now for free so you can create your own full printed cover in MS Word. For those who have never used MS Word as their own template you should first look at www.diybookcovers.com and register to receive the free example pack and instructions.
As your complete printed cover is only as good as your front cover, it is a necessary first move to get the best possible front cover. In an ideal case, you have already completed a book cover that you are satisfied with, transformed it into a JPG and used to resell your book. Now you want to create a complete cover for Createspace (or Lightningource, or others).
You' ll need to know the definitive number of words in your book format, so if you haven't yet reformatted your book for printing, you must do so before you do so. I' ve created some free book reformatting tutorials and patterns to help you:
When all this is done, you can start downloading a artwork that' s unique to your book. Register with Createspace. Then click on "Books">> "Publish paperback">> "Envelope". Click on "Submission Requirements" and "Download Cover Templates". When you use Lightning Sourcecode, you can get a sample here: The majority of your book will be "black and white" - adjust your book to your book sizes and page numbers.
"Whiteness " is only suitable for special non-fiction or textbooks, or when you print colour images. As soon as you click on "Build Template", you will receive a zip archive for your convenience, which contains a PDF and a PNG archive. These stencils are equipped with much more whiteness. In order to create a Word document in the correct format, you must compute it yourself:
To use Createspace, you must provide all corners with a bleed allowance of . 125". For a 6 "x9" book: It is interesting to note that my example pattern created by Createspace has a back width of". 49" instead of". 5" as it should; I have also noted that especially with very large volumes (600+pages) the back can be switched off, so that the Createspace computations are not ideal.
The" page layout size" (the page on which the printout is made) and the black dotted line = cutting line are shown in the pattern created on the right. By downloading your artwork from Createspace, you will receive a PDF and a PNG copy - the PNG copy that you can use in Word.
The only thing I need to do is to create my new 9.25" x 12.75" user-defined documents. I can then pull this PNG form into the Word-files. First it will be centered somewhere in the centre of the page and too small, because there is much more room around the templates.
I use the cropping utility to cut quite near the edge of the stencil. Attempt to trim it directly on the line to get the whole outer blank without trimming the rose-colored margins. This makes it so that I can move and resize the picture as I want.
I can now move and move the original until the borders of the original match the borders of my work. When you make it too big, you can no longer grip the corners and you must push it to the side until you can grip a ledge to change its size.
As a result, the documents are now the ideal sized and you can organise the items without having to worry about the parts that disappear from the page. As soon as you have finished all graphics and texts, you can simply store them as PDF and your complete printed cover is ready.
However, another, much easier way to do all this is to use an on-line convertor to convert your existing document into a Word-based one. If this is the case, the original is already the right format and the entire whitespace is "extra" - it is truncated during print. This way you can place the artwork over the original, keep the blank as it is, store it as a dynamic and it will still work well.
The same applies to Lightning Sourcecode templates: the one you are downloading has a great deal of additional hard disk that you can insert or cut out, it doesn't matter). So the simplest way to get the artwork into your complete artwork is to make the front, back and back artwork one-of-a-kind, without the text.
You will need to make some adjustments to the text if you have already created an e-book / front cover with my artwork, as you now have additional borders at the top, bottom and sides. The text on the front cover must therefore be reduced slightly, away from the sides and shifted a little to the lefthand (because there is an additional bleed only on the right side on the front and only on the lefthand side on the back).
I' m going to open one of my cover art (#71fiction) and get to work. I then press CTRL+C to copy these levels, click into my other one with the pattern and press STRG+V to insert the other. This worked, but when I use the complete pattern (without trimming the edges), it looks quite chaotic, and now it's difficult to see where my corners are.
So, I used an on-line converter: instead of storing as PDF, you can also try to use Word's "Print" function for print/save as PDF with Adobe, Nitro PDF or another PDF utility. Occasionally this is saved beyond the boundaries of the picture, but you can cut it after you have saved it as JPG and paste it into your cover files.
I then used my JPG to JPG converters: Now I have a neat, 6×9 @300dpi (1800 x 2700 pixels) JPG picture of the cover, which I can simply pull into my Word document (or paste>>>Image). NOTICE: As we are working on this for printing, you should see Chris McMullen's paper on maintaining picture integrity in MS Word:
For example, in Word 2010, click the Files folder, under Help, scroll down to search for items (initially hiding at the bottom of the list), choose Advanced, move down to Image size and quality, and click the "Do not collapse pictures to file" option. "Do this before you insert pictures into the spreadsheet.
Do not copy images into the Word file. I can now move around my text to centre it - be careful to stay away from the margins (unless your text intentionally goes near the margin). If you have something that looks like text that extends the cover margin, it will be marked by createspace and will not pass (unless you call support and ask them to disregard it).
Anything else to note - as you now have more room, you will need to lengthen your top, bottom and right edges slightly. When you have a core picture or sign that matches well between the text, you may need to keep the same font and just expand the wallpaper to fill the additional room (in which case, you need to do this in the initial front cover while still having planes by making the middle items smaller and a little to the lefthand before you save the whole thing as JPG).
So, this year I just save the picture as PDF>>JPG and resize it until it fills the front. Normally I can only take a little of the front cover, like a stripe of the very lefthand side, and use it as a backbone.
This time I simply photocopied the front cover picture, placed it behind the front cover and moved it to the lefthand side until it touched the dashed line on the other side of the back. Since the skyline is not even, I turned the back cover so that the skylines are evenly aligned.
Maybe I could restart and keep all the additional scenery, maybe expand it a little, use the same slopes and use them for the back. It' d look good.... but it would be a little difficult because of the brighter, almost blank skies and the tree line. You have to be cautious with the back text - it has to blend into the rose edges, so make sure there is no overlay.
Maybe you want to copy the wallpaper and put a new level over everything that you can turn on and off (or you can just fade out the levels while you paste the text, and then fade them back in). All I' m going to do for this cover is to create a new form.
Usually I would put in a square and make it near either red or blue. I' ll insert a text level that connects the typefaces to the front cover. You can then include the remainder of your processed, compelling and very important backcover copy - the same copy you'll probably use for your Amazon inscription.
It' really important to do this great, so get help to Fiverr. When you use CRETESSPACE, you can simply download and post as PDF: CREATSPACE adds a bar code (I need to make sure I have enough room on the back where the colored square is on the template).
However CS will not be adding any prices, and many bookshops will not save your book without a prize on the book and in the log. ISBNs are not yet available, you can launch your projects on Createspace to get one, or buy directly from Bowker. When you receive a free version of Createspace, the publishers on Amazon are "Createspace".
" They can charge a little more to fix this (it will show your publishers name on Amazon, although if someone looks up the genuine ISBN on Bowker, they still find Createspace listed) or you can even charge more to register it on your publishers name in Bowker.
Pricing is imbedded, but coded, so I just put in a regular $price and put it in the blank barcodebox. If you have a smartphone, you should also make sure that the ISBN works - if you have a smartphone, you should get a downloadable Barcodecanner application and you should be able to read the barcodes directly from your computer monitor (it only works if your ISBN is already in your book).
Now, there are both possibilities. In general, shiny is better for the fictional, especially for a cover with many deep spots or saturation. Mat is generally best suited for plain blank envelopes such as non-fiction. You can also try printing one of them (just order, change the settings and reorder) before you are sure.
So, if it bothers you a great deal, but you think everything is okay, just hand in the dossier, await permission and order a document. To get a PDF copy of this manual and the four full-cover artwork I added at the top of this article, you can get it here for free:
For more help, please feel free to browse my free tutorial. I' ve designed over 1000 book art titles, among them hundrets of best-sellers - I' ve downloaded my free book to find out all the inside scoops I use to buy more of them. But I also agree with some of the sophisticated book marking techniques I have used to achieve a full-time revenue with my work.