Many of my stories are short stories that don’t require an expensive cover. (Please note, none of these are affiliate links.) I’ve had luck so far spending money on this fiverr gig, then using GIMP to modify the end result. The idea is to get an image and font that work well for the cover. I then modify the image manually, along with the text, to get an okay cover. However, I don’t think I will be able to continue doing that as I write longer and more complex tales. My next step in this process is to pay for pre-made covers.
Why is this the next step? Because the Fiverr gig only takes one image from DepositPhotos to be used for the cover. A custom cover takes a number of images and blends them together. The end result is a cover that could pass for a 100% custom design. This is the next step up from pre-made covers, though it is the longest time-wise and most expensive. So, how do I find pre-made covers? First I lookup what others have recommended and commented on. For that, I searched Reddit. I found this SelfPubBookCovers website. There are a lot of great covers there, but there are also a lot of junk covers as well. To help sort these out, I clicked the genre I am looking for and begin scrolling. When I find a cover that looks good (even if it doesn’t fit the book) I click it. I then take the creator’s name and search for covers by that creator. What I am doing is isolating the really good artists and then looking through their portfolio. Through my search, I may dig into about a half dozen different artist portfolios. The end result is finding that one or two covers that really stand out that may fit the book. After that, I look for covers by that artist that are similar. Many times I am not only looking for one good cover, but a small series of covers. The goal is to pre-buy covers for two or three books, so that as the series continues, I have covers that all match. I think that’s an extremely important aspect to finding a cover. The goal is getting a book series that looks professional, but not having to pay high prices.