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Book Cover Design Resources for Self-Published Authors

Cover art may be the toughest task facing self-published authors. Last weekend, Andy Carpenter (ACD & Co. principle and former VP & Art Director St. Martin’s Press) and Eric Baker (design director of O Design and The Design Observer contributing editor) shared some cover design resources for self-published authors.

GalleyCat prowled the floor of the Self-Publishing Book Expo last Saturday. We picked up some book pitching tips and encouraged self-published authors to enter our ongoing Book Pitch contest–a chance to win a free ticket to the eBook Summit in December.

At the Expo’s “Design and Illustration: How Your Cover Can Sell Volumes” panel discussion, Baker and Carpenter shared a list of public domain image collections and other book cover resources that self-published writers can use.  “When you self-publish, it behooves you to dress up your book as much as possible,” Carpenter reminded the audience. The complete list of resources follows below.

1. The Library of Congress’ image collection to find public domain images

2. American Memory Project to find public domain images

3. Book Cover Archive to see what other designers do

4. Archive.org for public domain books

5. Public Domain Images Google Search

6. Creative Commons search on Flickr

Baker concluded with a word of warning for amateur designers: “It is your responsibility to make sure your images really are public domain.”

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