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Choosing a PreMade: Tips & Tricks

When an author starts searching for a premade cover, its instinctive to click on the first one that appeals to your personal style. But you don’t want to simply choose an attractive cover, you want to purchase one that fits your book. Which means it will attract the right audience and sell your story to readers that will love it!

If the cover is advertising a funny, beach-side romp but the story is actually about a couple with marital problems struggling to enjoy their vacation at the beach, readers may feel confused and frustrated, simply because they started reading with the wrong expectations. It’s better for sales if you’ll chose a cover that clearly indicates the genre and tone of the story. Those aspects of the cover will draw in readers, and if the cover is mis-communicating the story, it will impact your initial sales as well as your reviews (and not in the positive way we want!).

With that in mind, here are a few tips on choosing the right premade cover for your book:

  • Pay attention to genre. Even if your story is cross-genre or may not fit neatly into just one genre, this is always a good place to start. So, first, identify a few genres that fit your story. (If you’ll release on Amazon/Kindle, you’ve probably already done this research, so you know where to list the book, which means step one is already done!) Hint: Some of the Categories are genre-specific in the PreMade Shop.
  • Now that you’ve targeted a few genres, spend some time looking at best-seller lists. See what covers appeal to you within the genre, and note general trends as you go. (E.g. Are models popular in this genre? Close-up portraits or silhouettes? What about colors, is there an abundance of vivid color, or are they dark and moody?) There are a variety of elements that impact the design and you’ll likely be quick to find the ones that appeal to you while also communicating the genre clearly. Goodreads is also a great place to research covers since they feature lists with even more specific genres (like Chick Lit). Hint: Keywords can help narrow down the search results in the Shop.

For example, from within the YA Sci-Fi genre, here are the top 9 best-sellers (Aug. 2017) from the ‘Alien’, ‘Dystopian’, ‘Time Travel’ and ‘Steampunk’ sub-genres. There are obvious similarities since they are all sci-fi and YA, but also certain differences between the sub-genres. (Click on the images to see them at full-size.)


  • Now, consider your story. What tone is right for the story you’re telling? Is it light-hearted and playful? That’s usually indicated by bright tones and stylistic fonts. On the other hand, maybe it’s thoughtful and dark, so you’ll want to look for a more traditional font (usually san-serif or serif) and a more subdued color palette, like a focus on blacks, whites and greys or monochromatic shades. Hint: Try the Shop’s Color Scheme filter.
  • And finally, now is the time to really rely on your personal preferences. Obviously, these will influence you throughout this process, but they’ll be helping make the final cut now, and not accidentally encouraging you to buy the wrong cover for your story.
I’ve been looking into cover designers for a bit, and I made sure I felt my project would be in the right hands before I agreed to anything and I felt Christa was the right designer as soon as she responded back. …[She] was incredibly easy to work with! The little changes I did want, she made without any problem.

Nicole Sobon, The Outbreak Duology

2013-12-08T17:57:40+00:00

Nicole Sobon, The Outbreak Duology

I’ve been looking into cover designers for a bit, and I made sure I felt my project would be in the right hands before I agreed to anything and I felt Christa was the right designer as soon as she responded back. …[She] was incredibly easy to work with! The little changes I did want, she made without any problem.
...Christa was amazing with responding to my emails. I asked many questions and not once did she make me feel like I was a bother. She made the entire process enjoyable and exciting. She did everything I asked and had [the premade cover] for me in under three days. All of this took away a ton of stress and I plan to work with her again.

Jami Wagner, Date in the Dark

2016-03-17T17:34:54+00:00

Jami Wagner, Date in the Dark

...Christa was amazing with responding to my emails. I asked many questions and not once did she make me feel like I was a bother. She made the entire process enjoyable and exciting. She did everything I asked and had [the premade cover] for me in under three days. All of this took away a ton of stress and I plan to work with her again.
Although it bills itself as a pre-made cover outlet, P&S actually rides the line between one-on-one designer support and a straight “here’s your cover” download experience. It’s somewhere between custom and pre-made. I liked that a lot. There’s a definite need in this market for a service like that... I liked that I was able to type in a title and my name, then pass it off for a professional tweaking.

Benjamin Sobieck, Glass Eye

2015-03-12T17:38:05+00:00

Benjamin Sobieck, Glass Eye

Although it bills itself as a pre-made cover outlet, P&S actually rides the line between one-on-one designer support and a straight “here’s your cover” download experience. It’s somewhere between custom and pre-made. I liked that a lot. There’s a definite need in this market for a service like that... I liked that I was able to type in a title and my name, then pass it off for a professional tweaking.
Thank you for making my novel come to life with your beautiful cover! …I had been shopping around for a few weeks before I realized your service was unprecedented.

B.M. Sandy, Someone to Stay

2017-03-17T16:56:29+00:00

B.M. Sandy, Someone to Stay

Thank you for making my novel come to life with your beautiful cover! …I had been shopping around for a few weeks before I realized your service was unprecedented.
I think the different available services, from pre-made to the various tiers of custom work are important. As an indie author, I appreciate the ability to balance expense with the level of customization and detail.

Laurie Baxter, A Charlie Brown Christmas & Who Does He Think He’s Fooling?

2016-12-01T14:44:25+00:00

Laurie Baxter, A Charlie Brown Christmas & Who Does He Think He’s Fooling?

I think the different available services, from pre-made to the various tiers of custom work are important. As an indie author, I appreciate the ability to balance expense with the level of customization and detail.
I fell in love with Paper and Sage the first time I visited the website, and I’ll never go anywhere else for my cover-art. Christa is the ultimate professional and I love all the covers she’s done for me, but the cover for The Standout literally stands out. So many people noticed and complimented it during my Kindle Scout campaign, and I know her work majorly contributed to my success as a Kindle Scout winner.

Laurel Osterkamp, The Standout, Kindle Scout Winner

2015-10-29T16:43:26+00:00

Laurel Osterkamp, The Standout, Kindle Scout Winner

I fell in love with Paper and Sage the first time I visited the website, and I’ll never go anywhere else for my cover-art. Christa is the ultimate professional and I love all the covers she’s done for me, but the cover for The Standout literally stands out. So many people noticed and complimented it during my Kindle Scout campaign, and I know her work majorly contributed to my success as a Kindle Scout winner.
It was so easy to make changes and approve the design. Easy……Professional……Friendly.

Gia Riley, Between the Pain

2014-05-08T17:53:29+00:00

Gia Riley, Between the Pain

It was so easy to make changes and approve the design. Easy……Professional……Friendly.
As a returning customer, it was another job well done. They're professional [and] their pre-made book covers are top notch.

James Hanson, Trancelike

2017-08-23T13:57:52+00:00

James Hanson, Trancelike

As a returning customer, it was another job well done. They're professional [and] their pre-made book covers are top notch.
I loved the huge selection of premades. [A]ffordable and…beautifully made.

Lindsey Sablowski, Bloodline Inheritance

2015-06-30T17:30:15+00:00

Lindsey Sablowski, Bloodline Inheritance

I loved the huge selection of premades. [A]ffordable and…beautifully made.
Easy. No hassle.

Peyton Woodson Cooper, True North

2016-09-10T17:04:43+00:00

Peyton Woodson Cooper, True North

Easy. No hassle.
If you’re looking for a skilled and affordable designer, look no further. The communication is excellent, and the end product will make you proud.

DS Black, The Stubbs: A Novella

2015-01-15T17:40:14+00:00

DS Black, The Stubbs: A Novella

If you’re looking for a skilled and affordable designer, look no further. The communication is excellent, and the end product will make you proud.
I had a great experience working with Paper and Sage. I was feeling so frustrated after looking at dozens of sites… The covers [at P&S] are so current and original, I trust the designer’s pulse on the marketplace and that is really important to me.

Anya Monroe, Heart of Stone

2015-03-13T17:36:37+00:00

Anya Monroe, Heart of Stone

I had a great experience working with Paper and Sage. I was feeling so frustrated after looking at dozens of sites… The covers [at P&S] are so current and original, I trust the designer’s pulse on the marketplace and that is really important to me.
Christa is a joy to work with.

Lana Voynich, Away from Here

2015-05-25T16:45:57+00:00

Lana Voynich, Away from Here

Christa is a joy to work with.
[Clients of P&S are] getting a quality product that’s incredibly professional and it will allow their book to stand out from all other indie books.

Cheyanne Young, Not Your Fault

2014-08-28T17:46:45+00:00

Cheyanne Young, Not Your Fault

[Clients of P&S are] getting a quality product that’s incredibly professional and it will allow their book to stand out from all other indie books.
I could not be happier...and I will definitely come to [P&S] for book 3, as well as any other books. Thank you SO much for all of your hard work, and for seeing inside my head so brilliantly.

Dena Nicotra, The Weaver Series

2013-05-11T18:02:06+00:00

Dena Nicotra, The Weaver Series

I could not be happier...and I will definitely come to [P&S] for book 3, as well as any other books. Thank you SO much for all of your hard work, and for seeing inside my head so brilliantly.
Efficient, Professional, Creative

Aria James, Hearts of Larceny

2015-02-26T17:31:53+00:00

Aria James, Hearts of Larceny

Efficient, Professional, Creative
Super friendly and prompt feedback and delivery! Christa is a total joy to work with!

Becky Wicks, Our Frozen Wings

2014-12-18T17:44:48+00:00

Becky Wicks, Our Frozen Wings

Super friendly and prompt feedback and delivery! Christa is a total joy to work with!

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