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book cover process



A cover is a marketing piece to capture the attention of potential readers. In the world of online shopping, your cover has about two seconds to grab the attention of someone scrolling by. It's your first hurdle to clear to get sales! We encourage our authors to think long and hard about what they're hoping to see from the finished product. Your book cover is not meant to be a snapshot or an exact replica of a scene from your book. Often, authors have a strict vision of a particular scene from their book where all details have to be exact. The problem is that a new reader isn't going to notice or care about those things. Try not to get caught up in the minor details that are personal to you and lose sight of what your cover is out there to do: which is snag buyers who know nothing about your book!

From the cover, a reader should be able to tell:

  • The genre

  • The overall tone of the book

  • A vague idea of the book’s subject matter

A cover with dragons and castles is going to convey high fantasy. Add a girl wearing modern-day clothes on there with castles and dragons, and now the reader knows it's portal fantasy!





Pricing and Ordering

Check out the packages offered by SFS! This is generally genre-based. If you aren’t sure, feel free to ask and we can direct you to the right package to suit your needs.

Once you know what you’d like, fill out the order form here. After submitting the order form, you’ll be presented with a digital customer agreement to sign (you can preview the contents of the agreement here) and an invoice. Payment is required in full before your project start date, however we ask for a $50 upfront fee for all bookings to hold your spot. You should also receive an email to schedule your start date.

SFS will review your submission within 1-2 business days (Mon-Friday) and confirm your booking. We’ll ask any clarifying questions and, where necessary, brainstorm ideas. Some authors like to be very involved in the process of their cover creation. Others like to hand us the info and trust us to make them something marketable with little input from them!


Beginning Your Project

Sometime during the start week for your project, you'll receive a rough mockup of your cover design. This will be done with low-resolution images. It looks very rough and is used as a concept idea to pick out images and get feel for what the final design will look like. All big changes are done at this stage.


example: mockup using low resolution images and only vague effects. note the watermark on the images from the stock site they're from. 

SC1 SERPENTS MARK ebook-1600x2400.jpg

example: author approved mockup with some modifications, such as a shift in color and author name font. images are licensed, blending is finalized, lighting is painted, end result is polished and professional. 

Once you've approved a mockup, I move on to the 'final' stage. You'll receive a high-resolution version of your cover for approval. This will be polished and ready to go. This stage is for minor changes, such as small color changes or other little tweaks. Once you've approved it, I send over all the final ebook files you'll need to upload to KDP or any other online distributor. I also give a complimentary cover reveal graphic, and a copy of your title as a .png for interior formatting.

Any questions? Drop us a line at! We look forward to working with you!

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