Book design for self-published authors


What is book design?

When talking about “book design”, we’re not only referring to the front cover of a book. Book design encompasses the whole book: from cover to interior.

Book cover design

The part of designing a book that most people default to is book cover design. This aspect of book design primarily refers to the following:

    • Front cover
    • Spine
    • Back cover

But it can also include the following optional

    • Duplex / Printed ends
    • Gate folds

For more information on book cover design, read our article 5 Keys to a Successful Book Cover Design or if you’re ready to get started, submit your book details and get started today.


Examples of some of our favourite book covers (designed by us!)

Book interior design: Typesetting

The interior of a book is the oft forgotten aspect of book design, but it is extremely important. The typesetting of a book affects the following parts of your book:

    • Readability
    • Accessibility
    • Professionalism
    • Enjoyment

If you’d like to read more about typesetting, see our article What is Typesetting? or submit your book details and get started today.


Examples of some of our favourite typesetting (designed by us!)

Why is good book design important?

A well-designed book influences the perceived quality and professionalism of your book. This is important for readers, retailers, and you as an author. Let’s break this down further.

A book cover is the first thing that your potential readers and retailers will see when interacting with your book. It’s really one of your first sales-people. If your book cover is well designed and can convey the genre and tone of your book succinctly and attractively, the book is more likely to be put on shelves or picked up by readers.

Typesetting doesn’t just make your content look appealing, it also effects how readers interact with and consume your book. A well-designed interior can ease and improve readability as much as a poorly designed one can do the opposite.

If your book is designed poorly, your readers are far less likely to give you good reviews, recommend you to friends or family, or even finish your book if it is too hard to read. Not only this, but a badly designed book reflects on your professionalism as an author, making it harder to build a dedicated readership who will follow your progress and buy your next books. Ensuring that you have a professional and appealing book design that stands its own against the market is important to your books success.

How designing a book works with Green Hill

Step 1. Book design briefing session

Unlike other publishers—traditional and self-publishers alike—the first step of book design with Green Hill involves you, the author, talking directly with the designer who will be working on your book. You’ll be supplied a design brief document that will detail what was discuss and also include a moodboard of some design elements, colours, fonts, and existing books that could relate to your book for inspiration.

Step 2. Book concept

From your briefing session, your designer will work on two concepts for your book cover. This will be directed by the moodboard and the conversation you had with them during the briefing session. The book concepts will be supplied to you and you can pick your favourite and provide feedback to help finalise the design.

Step 3. Final cover

Once your favourite concept has been chosen, it’s time for the designer to implement your feedback and further refine the book design. You’ll also supply the author with the final blurb, biline, etc. if you haven’t already done so.

Step 4. Sample typesetting

The first step of your book’s interior design is a sample of your typesetting. This is where the designer will layout a small section of your book to show you how the book looks laid out and the design choices the designer has made. The overall design is directed by the font choices and visuals from your cover, hence why this step is after final cover has been completed.

Step 5. Typesetting

Once the sample typesetting is approved by you, the designer will layout and typeset the rest of the book. You’ll be given back the files after this process so that you can look through the book and highlight any errors that may stand out now that the book is in a different format (most packages have up to 20 typesetting alterations included).

Note: Each of our publishing packages have differing inclusions regarding book design. Be sure to check our services comparison table for more information on what your particular package includes. 

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