Did you know that one of the template options in CreateSpace (on Page 5) has a template that takes two jpg images—one for the front cover and one for the back cover? Without trying to figure out the dimensions for creating a pdf full cover which includes the spine? Once you upload these two images, CS will create the spine automatically. Depending on how many pages, there may or may not be title information on the spine. I believe you need a minimum of 120 pages for this.
Let me start back at the beginning. When I first started publishing with CreateSpace, I was using their standard templates. I didn’t really like any one of their templates completely. I also couldn’t afford to have my book covers designed according to specs. It was YEARS before I noticed the template directly to the left of the full cover pdf one.
Here’s three ways I am now creating my own book covers.
Canva has a template for Kindle Book Covers, but I always publish my paperback books first and use the front cover image for my paperback for my Kindle Book.
For the paperback: click on “Use custom dimensions” and enter the book size. You’ll see “width x height” in pixels (px) or inches (in). I use inches. Use the actual size of your book interior document. For example, 5.5 x 8.5 or 6 x 9. You can use one of their images or upload your own. Some images are free and some are one dollar. Add text. I love the option where you can rotate the text. There are lots of fonts to choose from, too! Download the completed cover as a jpg/jpeg. Canva will save your art so you can return and make changes later or another day. Exit out and create a new one for the back cover.
One of the features I like best in Canva is their shapes which is in elements. You can adjust the transparency of the shape (or image) to create a special effect. Below is the image of the front and back cover I created in Canva for another author. The author is an artist and wanted her painting on the book cover. She didn’t want solid shapes which would completely block out her painting and the words blended in with the background no matter which colors I tried. The solution was the transparent shape which highlighted the text.
Here is the back cover which I also did in Canva.
I uploaded each of these two images into the CreateSpace template to get this. Her book didn’t have the minimum page count for a spine so CreateSpace made the spine a solid color. (Note, the author wanted a different profile photo which was easy to change because Canva saved all the art I’ve done on my ‘page’.) In CreateSpace, you can click on full size preview of the full cover and “save as” jpg/jpeg.
Canva also has templates for Facebook cover photos. I created the one below with all my books on it. I purchased the grass background for $1 and uploaded my book covers one by one, rotating them to achieve the effect I wanted.
In Microsoft Office Suite, open a new document in Publisher. In Page Design, set the page size. Insert one or more of your own photos or use one of their backgrounds which range from solid colors, gradient colors, pictures/textures, or patterns. Insert shapes, change the colors of the shapes, add text. Insert additional online images. Save as jpg/jpeg and keep your Publisher file in case you want to go back and make changes. Upload the front and back cover images separately in CreateSpace. I did the following book covers with Publisher: Love, Life, & God: Getting Past the Pain—Reflections: A Toolbox of Poetry—Creating A Meaningful Life After Disability—Growing An Internal Garden To Cope With Chonic Pain, Illness, and Depression. For the back cover of Love, Life, & God, I uploaded the cover image into Canva so I could use the transparency feature to fade out the image. Then I added the text and my photo.
For my book Miracles Sandwiched Between The Challenges—Making It Through The Roller Coasters Of My Life (With The Help Of My Guardian Angels), I wanted a roller coaster on my front cover. I found one in Imikimi… and it just happened to have a place for inserting two different images. I uploaded my photo and the image of an angel.
What About Audible Cover Art?
Double click any of the book cover images you designed and open with Paint. Make a copy. Go back and find that copy (or make a copy before you open it in Paint). “Select”—create a square with your best guess and “crop”. Then resize to 2400 x 2400 pixels. Be sure to uncheck “Maintain aspect ratio”. I don’t like using paint to add text. I open a new Publisher document, make the page size 5” x 5” and insert my cropped image. Then I add the additional text.
You may have to resize your cover images to fit Kindle Direct’s Cover Size Specification. Open your image in Paint and resize. The covers for Appearances: A Journey of Self-Discovery and View From A Tree are CreateSpace templates.
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- Creating Your Own Book Covers for CreateSpace & Kindle - March 23, 2016