Cover Art Originality Struggles


After reading on Episode for nearly 4-5 months now, I’ve finally decided to write my own story, and I swear, I have been stuck on cover art for the last week. I’m struggling to come up with an original and eye catching idea. How do you guys generate cover art concepts?


I generally tend to make my cover arts on my own. They aren’t the best, but they’re not bad if I say so myself. As for how I generate concepts, I generally tend to toy with ideas and look up images that relate to what’s in my head or aesthetics and stuff and play with those until I have something I like. Also, I try to remember basic design principles and see things from a reader’s point of view- if I was a reader judging this exact story by its cover, what would I want to see? What would best represent it? Also, what would be simple and to the point, and yet have a certain power to it or an aesthetic quality that really stood out? Google Images is your best friend in this process. Even if you’re an artist and prefer to be able to create your own work, I believe searching for certain key words and phrases that relate to your story or are general ideas relating to it can really help when choosing a direction to take.

For instance, this is the cover for a yet-to-be-published story I’m working on-

I was stuck on this one for quite a while. My story is set in a Southern town and about a supernatural serial killer and debutantes. I spent a long time looking up things like “debutantes” and “debutante aesthetic” and “femme fatale” and “femme fatale aesthetic” and in a moment of desperation, I even looked up something like “debutante killer” (which totally didn’t work). Eventually, I managed to find a picture of a hand holding a lipstick knife, which I really liked. I found black border vectors I liked as well, and did some edits to make the background pink and remove a few shadows I didn’t like. Then, I took it to Google Drawings and wrote in my title, positioning it between the fingers for aesthetic effect. I didn’t want my name to be too obvious on this one, so I placed it in the knife, somewhere you’d only see it if you really looked. Font color was an obvious choice for me- black to stand out and complement the borders. The fonts themselves were something I wanted to show elegance and grace. And so, this was born.


My story is a fantasy adventure set in a desert world.
I used my own photographs.
For the large cover, I have a picture of the North Dakota Badlands, and I have a picture of Mont St. Michael for the small cover.


Closing due to one month of inactivity :slight_smile: