Frequently Asked Questions
What are your costs?
Prices vary widely for projects. Please see each section in the menu for pricing information. The best thing to do is contact me for a quote specifically tailored to your project.
Why are your prices so much higher than another designer I’ve been looking at using?
In the world of graphic design, prices can go from free to thousands of dollars. There really is no set standard, which means that many freelancers like me are left to decide what is fair to charge for our services.
For me, I have found that my prices not only encompass the final product you receive, but also the experience you have while we’re working together on that product. I am personal with my clients. I will take the time get to know you. I put everything into my work, and my prices reflect that. For some clients, it’s not worth it, and they are much happier using another designer’s less expensive services. And that’s great! For others, I’ve been told I’m not charging enough for everything I do for them. It’s all relative, and it’s all perspective.
I not only design covers. I can also illustrate specific styles of art. I research fonts. I buy fonts. I research design, and I know the publishing industry, which will be reflected in my work. I will hold your hand through the entire publication process, if that’s what you need. What you’re paying for is far more than “just a cover” or “just a formatted interior.” My work is my art, and I will help make your publishing journey as enjoyable as possible.
What file formats are included?
For a cover project, you will receive a final high-resolution .jpg file of your front cover for eBook and marketing purposes. For a print cover, you will also receive a print-ready PDF created specifically to your printer’s specifications. I can always scale things down for you, if you’d like, or trim them up to any specified size. I also design promotional materials if you want or need anything like that once you start marketing.
For formatting projects, file formats are a print-ready PDF to your printer specifications, and ePub reflowable format for eBooks. I can also create fixed layout format (FXL), PDF, or .mobi formats.
I am happy to hand over all source files to you, if requested.
Who owns the design?
I own all rights to your cover design, concepts, and/or layout designs until you have paid your final invoice. At that point, all rights to the final cover and/or layouts will revert to you. I retain rights only to showcase your design in my portfolio. Nothing else.
What is included in the contract/terms/conditions?
I am more than happy to send you a copy of my current Terms & Conditions if you inquire. It will not be for you to sign. If we agree to move forward with booking your project, I will send you a copy for you to digitally sign.
What are your timelines?
Once I begin a cover project, the turnaround time can take a few weeks. That’s in general, though. Some clients aren’t quite ready to finish up, or just have busy schedules and the timeline is much longer. If custom artwork is involved, the timeline can also be much longer. Formatting can take up 6 weeks from start to finish (it’s a long back-and-forth process), but can go faster if needed.
But don’t worry! These are details we can discuss specifically to your needs.
Can you provide references?
Yes! Just inquire and I will send you references. You’re also welcome to contact anyone I have worked with. You can find client work in my portfolio, on my Facebook/Instagram/Twitter accounts, etc. I do not give out personal email addresses, so contacting the clients is up to you. If you need a more specific reference than that, please let me know and I can get you in touch directly with clients who have specifically agreed to let me give out their contact info.
Do you require a deposit?
Yes, I do require a non-refundable deposit of 50% of the final quote for your project. However, that will only be 50% for the first project I’ll be working on. For instance, if you book all three books in a series, I would only require a deposit for the first book cover, and then once we finish that one, I will move on to the next cover and will invoice for that one separately. Deposits are non-refundable, in order to secure my time and work put into preparing your initial designs. Your deposit is applied toward your final amount.
Can you outline the cover/formatting process for me?
If you decide to move forward and agree to my quote, I will send you a Terms & Conditions Agreement for us both to sign. I will also send you an invoice for the deposit. Once both are completed, you will be officially booked for the time we will have previously discussed. Once I begin your project, it takes some time to create the cover concepts, and time for formatting as well if I’m doing interior layout (for the initial print version). I usually create about 3 cover concept for you to choose from. If you like one of the concepts, you’ll give me feedback on what you’d like possibly changed, etc., and I will begin your final cover layout. You will not owe anything for any images or artwork unless you request custom artwork to be created. If you don’t like any of the concepts, I will create more based on your feedback until we get to a cover you love.
Formatting/interior layout is done separately from your cover, if you have booked that in addition to a cover. I usually like to finish the cover before we begin layout, simply because interior layout often uses elements of the cover inside.
I need a project done right away, but you’re all booked up. What can I do?
It’s possible I can be booked out a month or more. Sometimes it’s less. Sometimes more. If you need a project done right away and you’d really like to work with me, I do offer rush services for an extra fee. These fees can run $200 or more depending on the project and how far out I am booked. This is not guaranteed, however. Sometimes I’ve already booked extra rush projects and there’s simply no more time left on my calendar. But it never hurts to ask! I’m always happy to try and work things out for you. I also know other designers I can refer you to, if needed.
What if I really want to work with you, but I can’t afford your prices? Will you give me a discount?
I give discounts under the following conditions: Repeat clients; a project I assess as taking less time and work than normal; subsequent projects in a book series. For everything else, I’m always happy to work out payment plans, if needed.
I’d really like to find a good editor/website designer/book trailer creator/marketing assistant. Do you offer those services?
I do not offer any services outside of what is listed here on my website. I do, however offer advice on where you might go to get other services.
For COVER COPY/BOOK DESCRIPTION/BLURB HELP, see Smitzman over on Fiverr. She can help or write your cover copy for you for a really great price.
For a good resource for others who edit, do cover design, and formatting, go to The Association of Independent Publishing Professions (AIPP). Check out their Member Directory here.
What if I have more questions?
Please use the Contact button in the menu, or simply fill out one of the Booking forms! I will get in touch with you. If you don’t hear back from me after using either of those means, it means I did not receive your inquiry. At that point, please contact me through one of my social media outlets. Once we’ve connected, I’m always happy to talk by phone, if you like.