Below is a 3D image of some recent books nearing publication, bearing in mind that I’m finally, now, a fully independent (Indie) Publisher (DiG-Press) and I pride myself in doing it all for virtually nothing and with very little techie knowledge – learning everything as I go along and sharing the best tried & tested ways with others like myself…
..therefore, I’m excited to share with you my most recent discovery: Making your books come alive and tangible before your readers hold the real thing in their hands, by presenting them in 3D. It doesn’t matter if your book is virtual (e-book) or will also be in 3D paper form, the result is the same: real books that interest your readers.
After a long search for the right site to make my books into 3D graphics for free, with no strings attached and simple to use, I came across this site: myecovermaker.com
Membership is required via simple and direct email and offers 5 free downloads and you can experiment with a wide range of templates which include CDs, box-sets, single CDs and books, upright, stacked, open, laying down etc. They have an old and new (beta) system. I used the old one. Just follow the online instructions. I experimented and used my own image from pics in JPEG, but you can design this on the site.
However, I didn’t at first see the merits of this method and site, which I will explain below: You see, I made a mistake (nothing new there) and chose a CD pack and as nice as the cover looked, the graphic was not a stack of books as intended, but a pack of CDs instead. So you can play around and see what works and what doesn’t. Next I chose a template that looked awful as my image was a bit broader and the text was all wrong on the left (spine) edge. When I was presented with the image with their watermark all over it and was being charged $4.90 or thereabouts as a one off fee to download and remove watermarks, I thought: here we go: there is always a catch. I went off back to my old haunts searching for a way.
I went to the following site selfpubauthors.com which covered one that I had used previously, but this is now unfortunately defunct and its equivelent (lets you do back and spine – so you have to have whole cover layout for wrap around if you want this effect), but my browser doesn’t support 3D graphics – apparantly – too antiquated like myself. There is another option noted in the article and finally, I came across the idea of skewing your image in a free online photographic editor called: Pixlr, where you can skew the angles enough to fit on any image of a 3D book that you can download from web. It was very like photoshop and I can’t use such tools – so I didn’t find it easy. However, if you want to try it, the article at completelynovbel.com this is a great site for self publishers (UK based mainly) and deals with all sorts of book, not just novels. They show you how to use this feature for photoshop and you can apply it to online free editor. Anyway, I do all my images up to high quality resolution without photoshop etc (too expensive) and use Powerpoint instead for everything and a bit of Picasa (all Google, Microsoft stuff I’m afraid).
The long and short of it all: I went back to myecover.com and as I already had the image uploaded and signed up etc, I created another 3D book. I chose the type illustrated above and was delighted when I narrowed the whole image from the right hand side to fit better, that it looked great. Better still, there were no watermarks or propts to pay for download. I just downloaded it and there it was. Simple. And I can make 4 more before paying and the small amount would be worth it if it came to it. And, finally, they do cool e-book devices and i-pads to show your book off as well.
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