How to create an effective book cover with Amazon KDP's Cover Creator



Design a professional-looking book cover using Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing’s free software. We show you how to use the software and discuss the many creative opportunities open to you. This is the last in a series of videos about self-publishing your book on KDP. You might want to watch our video “What Makes a Good Book Cover” before designing your own.

Before becoming a full-time author, graphic designer Mary Ames Mitchell taught book design and typography at the Academy of Art in San Francisco. She hopes to enable everyone to publish their stories and make money without having to spend money (while at the same time, keeping up a high standard of book design).

Links:
Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing:
KDP’s Pricing Cost page:
Bowker’s My Identifiers:
Library of Congress PCN:
Download Kindle Preview 3:
Download Acrobat Reader:
Worksheet for calculating retail price:


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Information you need to gather before you upload your file to Amazon’s KDP. We explained each of these in the video “6 Things You Need to Do Before You Upload your Book Files to KDP”
(Bowker requires the items marked with an * when you purchase an ISBN.)

*Book Title
Subtitle
*Principal Contributor
*Contributor’s Function(s)
Additional Contributors and their functions
*Publisher
*Medium
*Format
*First Genre
Second Genre
*Target Audience
*Publication Date
*Title Status
Total Page Count
*Are you listing a price with Bowker? (yes or no)
Suggested Retail Price
*Currency
*Price Type
ISBN for Paperback
ISBN for e-Book
ISBN for Hardback
Library of Congress Control Number
Long Description/Back Cover Text (200 words or less)
Short Description (15 to 30 words)
Keywords and keyword phrases (minimum 20)
Author Biography (50 to 100 words)

High-resolution images for your front cover (minimum 6.125” x 9.25” at 300 ppi)
High-resolution author photo (minimum 3” x 3” at 300 ppi)
Full cover (back, spine and front) image (opt) (Minimum 13.5” x 9.25” at 300 ppi)

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13 thoughts on “How to create an effective book cover with Amazon KDP's Cover Creator

  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Good evening, love your videos! I need someone to edit my manuscript before I download it to KPD. How can I find a reputable person? Any information would be appreciated.

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  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Mary: Thank you so much for your reply. I will definitely proceed with the instructions per your video for obtaining my own ISBN's from Bowker. I will get two, one for my hardcover and one for my paperback. However, although optional for the eBook, do you think I should also get one for that as well – I have seen instances where authors have obtained them. — Also in your Cover Creator tutorial, you mentioned that you would like to see the covers that people came up with after following your guidance. I would like to send you mine if you give me some way to get it to you. I think the cover image will give you a laugh. Thanks. John

    Reply
  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    I have another comment that I didn't think of when I made my first comment, below. And that is: When I got into setting up for my eBook, the question came up with the check boxes concerning Digital Rights Management (DRM) and whether or not I want to retain those rights or give them up. At first I thought there's no way I want to give them up. But after looking through Google and reading some commentary on the subject, I was not quite sure if I wanted to retain that position. However, I think if one wanted to sell an eBook under Kindle Select Unlimited, that they would have to give up those rights. I may eventually go the Unlimited route at some point, but for the eBook scenario I will first try and sell between $2.99 and $9.99 to take advantage of the 70 percent royalty. But it would be really helpful to hear your thoughts about whether one should give up or not give up their DRM right. Thanks, John.

    Reply
  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Hi Mary. Thanks so much for your great video on how to create a great book cover with KDP Cover Creator. It was very helpful and gave me sufficient information to comfortably open Cover Creator and successfully upload my cover photo and utilize the software to put together a great front and back cover that I feel will be very helpful in drawing in buyers for my book. I do have one question though, based on your brief mention about purchasing your own ISBN. I am just about ready to click on publish (my first novel) for a Kindle eBook, paperback, and hard cover on the Amazon site, as the manuscript and cover are now loaded and ready for all 3 formats. Also they have issued me a free ISBN for the paperback and hard cover. And I just emailed them and asked if there was any problem using my own ISBN's instead and they said, no, as long as I did not yet click on publish. So, my question is: Do you really think there is any significant advantage for me to get my own ISBN's? I realize that if my book is very successful and I later want to go with a commercial publisher that I would have obtain new ISBN's at that time and reissue the book as a new edition. But do you think that, that is not really that big of a deal to worry about and that I should just go ahead and use the Amazon ISBN's. It's been two and a half years of writing and editing and I am really anxious to click on the publish buttons for all 3 formats and finally get my book published. However if you feel that strongly that I definitely need to wait and go through the process of getting my own ISBN's first, I suppose I would do follow your guidance and do so if there is sufficient reason. Thanks, John

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  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Hello, can i ask how to get your own ISBN?

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  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    I don't know how to include my "personal summary" text in the creator. I don't see the feature, or does Amazon just add it in when they print?

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  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Thanks you! very helpful!

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  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Thanks for the detailed tutorial…very nice. I also have to say that you have a great "stage presence" and make a strong and genuine connection to the viewer…at least it seems that way to me. 🙂

    Reply
  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    You created a cover in the manner I want to. I have a cover I used for the eBook and I want the image on the paperback. When I use Cover Creator, the option you used does not exist. The one that allows you use your image as the front. Ten templates show up, but none allows my image to be the front cover.
    If you repeated the video today (4/25/21), you could not create your cover. Any ideas to help me?
    Thank you,
    Robert Kruse

    Reply
  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Nice video, thanks. And that was a good point about the back cover text size and formatting. I'm working to finalize and publish my YouTube channel text as an ebook and paperback. All I need now is a book cover.

    Reply
  • June 21, 2022 at 5:02 pm
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    Greetings Mary…just a shot in the dark….can I talk with you…one on one?…..trust you more then most 1(289) 983-8481 Canada…’Frosty’….shy?..Dfrosty62@gmail.com ….want you in my corner

    Reply

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