November 30, 2017

Book Cover Design

book cover design

Book Cover Design: This is a story of how I got my ass handed to me by book jacket designer, Gregg Davies.

On 23 February 2017 I met with Colleen O’ Donnell who asked me if I’d help her edit her book, I Stand Naked Before You. I read the manuscript and was taken by Colleen’s story. “Sure,” I said. I clearly needed the money because editing books is not for sissies. It’s intense concentration and shows up your deficiencies in the English language. I sorted both out.

  • Concerta (I stole the pills from my girlfriends teenage son – they’re hellishly expensive, you know) for concentration.
  • Elements of Style, William Strunk, jnr and EB White helps me brush up on my dangling participles and split infinitives.
  • And, of course, the dummies version for me, Mend Your English – What You Should Have Been Taught At Primary School, Ian Bruton-Simmonds. Don’t scoff, it’s one of the best books for – excuse the pun – mending your English.

I’m good at editing and writing. This clearly went to my head because I thought that I could also design the book cover. I sent it to my friend, Deborah du Plooy from Skoobs Theatre of Books and asked her, “Will this cover work”. Stuff me. She sent back 3 words: “Nope it’s awful”.

Book Cover Design - I stand naked before you

Both Colleen and I were devastated. We thought we had a winner.

Long story short – Deborah suggested we contract with book jacket designer, Gregg Davies.

So we did.

I sent him the manuscript and gave him the brief. In less than a day he came up with what I think is an awesome book cover design.

It captures the essence of Colleen’s story beautifully.Book cover design Gregg Davies


The lesson I learnt is to spend the money on book cover design and not do it yourself. If you want your books to sell, that is. And, take your ego out of the equation. I’m not a book cover designer and that’s why Gregg handed my ass to me.

I think Gregg crafted something magical.

I would recommend him in a heartbeat.

So, if you’re looking for an outstanding book cover design, check out Gregg Davies’s other book jacket designs.


One Comment on “Book Cover Design

[…] She got me in touch with a book jacket designer called Gregg Davies. Based on his work, I’ve decided to stick to my knitting. He really showed me what a pro can do. Go have a look at my effort and his effort. You make the call. Look here. […]


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