Book Designer

Craft attention-grabbing book covers.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$26,000 – $77,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Book Designers do?

A Book Designer creates the cover and visual designs for a published book. This is a big task: The job of a Book Designer involves creativity most of all, but also an understanding of the content of the book, and even some business skills.

First of all, to be a Book Designer you need to know what the book is about. This is more than just reading the book; you have to figure out its essence, while understanding what aspects make it marketable. And don’t forget about an eye-catching spine for the cover.

So what goes into the design? You might be hunched over a slant top desk, laboring for hours over an elaborate cover, made from scratch (top notch art skills come in handy here); or you may be squinting for hours in front of a computer screen running something like Photoshop or Illustrator. In both cases the job is labor intensive. Then you must incorporate the content with the cover, as well as the page layout and the typography. They must all come together to create a cohesive whole, that is, once again, marketable.

Book design is not just another art project. You can’t be too avant-garde, too statement-making, because while you are putting your heart and soul into your artwork, in reality, it’s only a representation of what’s inside, and it’s primary purpose is to make a consumer pick up and open the book for the words inside, rather than gaze at your masterpiece. But your work continues to the inner pages as you sequence all the components, and gives the book the subtle appeal of visual grace to complement its written words.

Should I be a Book Designer?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Flexible: You're open to change and think variety is the spice of life.

  • How to become a Book Designer

    Most Book Designers have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aci9aa&chl=|certificate+%284%25%29|associate%27s+%2811%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2885%25%29||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,85
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