Your book’s back cover

From Jan B. King’s blog comes this tidy summary of the components of your books’ back cover.

Most back covers have four elements to them (not in this order):

1. First, on the bottom left, there is a beautiful picture of you – a picture that says wow, she really knows her stuff, but she’s a lot of fun, too. If you aren’t the person you want to be pictured on your cover, then do the work you want to become that person now.

2. Beside the picture, there is a short to-the-point bio of three to five sentences – just enough to establish your best credentials for you as an expert in your subject. So if you’ve got work to do to establish those credentials, this is the time to do it.

3. Across the top are as many important, inspiring testimonials as you can fit in, from important, influential, and name-recognized people. If you don’t have those now from clients or friends, start thinking about who you know and who can connect you with the people you need to know. Network and get to know the people who you can help and who can help you.

Actually write the testimonials you’d like to read and the name of the person you’d like to have write them. If you know that a testimo-nial from a particular person would be powerful, do everything you can to meet that person. As you network, tell your new friends and business associates who you need testimonials from and find out if they have any friends and associates who can help you do that.

4. In the middle of the page there is a synopsis of the critical not-to-be-missed core message of your book.

Tell us in 50 words or less what we need to know – much like an elevator speech you might give as you network for your business, but this time for your book. Focusing on these elements you can begin to see how everything surrounding your book must come together to result in a successful publication: you, your message, and your audience must come together to create success.

As Jan says, there is an art to book covers and the back cover is especially important for in-person sales.

Have fun contemplating the best cover you can create.

Helen Gallagher

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