What to Do about Your Fan Novel’s Cover when You Can’t Draw


One of the biggest obstacles to publishing a fan novel is deciding what to do about the cover. What do you do if you can write, but not draw? Let’s explore the pros and cons of the two ways to design a fan novel cover without any talent for illustration. 




When You Can’t Draw 

If you can draw, this is a relatively easy problem to solve. You can simply draw the cover yourself.


But for those who weren’t lucky enough to be blessed with a talent for writing and drawing, there are two things you can do: use photo editing software to make something or ask someone else to draw it for you. 


Some printing companies have internal departments that will custom design a cover for you, but they’re pretty rare, so we won’t talk about them today. Let’s first talk about what comes with creating your cover. 


Designing the Cover Yourself


To design the cover yourself, you’ll need to make use of graphic design software or websites. You can download free-to-use images or purchase images and import them into whatever program you’re using to adjust the size and add text. 




If you use free images and software, you can keep the cost of your cover design low. Plus, you have a lot of freedom to chose what images or font to use and how to lay it out, so you can make the cover exactly how you want it. 




Graphic editing programs have a lot of functions, so it will probably take time just to learn how to use the software before starting. Also, there are a lot of photo editing software and websites like Photoshop and Canva, but many of them require the added step of registration to use them, so it could take a lot of time to design the cover on your own.


Finally, if you don’t have much experience with graphic design, you might not be able to achieve the high-quality design that you desire, so you’ll want to think carefully before you decide to design the cover yourself. 



Hiring Someone to Draw A Cover for You


Instead of making it yourself, you could ask someone you know or an artist you’re familiar with to draw it for you. They’ll draw it based on a general idea of what you want the cover to look like, such as what colors to use and where the text should go.




Since you don’t have to spend time and energy on designing a cover, you can devote more to working on the novel itself. And since you have the freedom to choose which artist you want to entrust it to, you have a certain degree of control over how the cover will come out. 




You will need to pay the person for designing the cover for you, whether that means in cash or as a free copy of the finished book. Make sure you communicate with the person you’re hiring about how they want to be paid. 


Of course, there is also a possibility that you might run into trouble when working with another person, such as missed deadlines or interpersonal problems, so consider the person you hire very carefully and make sure you have the means to pay them first. 





If you have the time, we recommend you make your own cover, but if you want to focus on your manuscript or just want to have a really beautiful cover, then the better option is to entrust it to someone else. 


Whichever you choose, you’ll want to decide as soon as possible, because you have deadlines you need to make. Make sure to think carefully and pick a choice that works for your time, attention, and financial needs!




Fujika Minazuki


Dale Roll

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