Do you want to create a fabulous ebook cover without using Photoshop? Do you feel like your design skills are limited? Are you on a tight publishing budget? If you’ve answered “yes” to any of these questions, you’re going to LOVE today’s post and the accompanying freebies.
I’m seriously excited to share it with you!
By the end of this post you will have the templates, overlays, and a video (and text) tutorial you need to design your own amazing ebook cover without Photoshop.
Meet my free Book Cover Design Kit!
This free download comes with a blue template image that is correctly sized for a 6×9″ book.* It also includes two different semi-transparent overlays: one in white and one in black. The overlays are simple to use, and provide a really nice result.
(*This template also includes the extra height and width required by CreateSpace for a full-bleed paperback cover.)
But is this method really author-friendly? And can it actually produce a nice cover?
Author C.L. Wells tried the white overlay and had this to say, “I needed a stand-in cover until I got to the real one in a few months. This little overlay took me from a ‘meh’ cover to one that’s received multiple compliments. You only need very basic skills to use it. Needless to say, I’m in no hurry to replace this cover…”
Cover designed by C.L. Wells using the Wordquill Book Cover Design Kit
So, let me show you how to make your very own ebook cover!
You will need:
- The Book Cover Design Kit (download from the Freebies page)
- Two images (Use Pixabay and Pexels for free images that do not contain people. Try Canstockphoto for inexpensive licensed images, especially if you need a person on your cover. More about finding stock images here.)
- A graphics editing program (Photoshop, Gimp, PicMonkey.com)
Watch this video for the step-by-step instructions:
Or, if you prefer written instructions, follow along below:
- Download the Book Cover Design Kit. (Subscribe now for access. If you’re already a subscriber, check our latest newsletter for the access password.)
- Go to www.picmonkey.com (skip this step if you’re using a different graphics program, of course!)
- Go to “Edit” at the top of the page. Select the blue template image from where you’ve saved it on your computer.
- Click the “Overlay” button at the left edge of the page. (It looks like a butterfly.)
- Click “Add Your Own” and select one of your images from where it’s saved on your computer. (Be sure to only use images you can legally use for this purpose!)
- Drag the corner circle to resize it to fit the width of the cover. Move it to either the top or bottom of the cover.
- Repeat steps 4-6 for the second image.
- Repeat steps 4-6 but this time, select either the white or black overlay included in the Book Cover Design Kit. Resize it to fit the entire cover image. Be sure the overlay is covering the edges of each image.
TIP: if you need to change the height of the overlay without changing the width, hold down the “Shift” key while you drag a corner.
- Click the “Text” button at the left edge of the page. (It looks like “Tt”.)
- Click “Add text.” Type the title of your book. Change font, color, and size to your taste. If you click “Yours” above the list of fonts, PicMonkey will allow you to use fonts installed on your computer. For more help with picking fonts and colors, check out the post, Making or Breaking a Book Cover: Font Choices.
- Repeat steps 9-10 for the author name and any other text.
- When you’re happy with the cover, click “Export” at the top of the page. If you’re not already logged in, you’ll be prompted to either log in or create an account. No need to pay for the full version of PicMonkey if you don’t want to. The free version works just fine!
- Name your file and select a quality level. I usually select the highest quality for covers. Don’t change the dimensions.
- Click “Export to Computer” to save to your computer.
- Enjoy your amazing new cover!
So, there you have it. Enjoy making your very own book covers with this kit!
If you have questions, post them below and I’ll do my best to answer! If you’d like to share the design kit with someone, do me a favor and encourage them to sign up for our newsletter to get access. Thanks a bunch!
Have you joined the Wordquill Facebook group? If you’d like feedback on your (clean!) cover design made with this kit, feel free to post it in the comments of the group’s post about this article. The other group members, including myself, will be happy to give you our thoughts!
Perry is a 20-something author with a lot on her plate. She’s wife to Tyler; mom to four little boys, two dogs, one cat, and 12 chickens; and author of five little books. She’s the admin of this site, as well as a freelance book designer and the creator of the WriteMind Planner for authors. She lives in the sunny southwest.
Offers: cover design and the WriteMind Planner at perryelisabethdesign.com