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There is no shortage of advice floating around about what you should put on your back cover. A simple Google search could give you hours of reading material on the topic, but very few provide advice on design. Here are a few tips on how to achieve an eye-pleasing back copy design and keep your content in focus:


1. Text:

  • Length: The general rule of thumb is to keep the text length between 120-175 words. This is to ensure that the back cover is not overcrowded. This is especially something to keep in mind for books with a smaller trim size.
  • Color: It’s tempting to have some effects (like reflective fonts or gradients) on your back cover text, which is not completely unheard of, but should be reserved for special portions of your content. For example, a header or the first word of your summary. It’s important to make sure the text is designed with a readable font.
  • Typeface: The font should bring together the elements from your front cover, but should be legible. Stay away from high-script or novelty fonts. They are hard to read.


2.   Author Bio & Picture:

Having an author bio on the back cover is typically reserved for larger trim sized books, think 6 x 9 and above. It’s typically encouraged to have an About the Author page in the back matter of the book. However, if you decide to have this on the cover, make sure you keep it short and sweet. Three to five lines are suggested.

If you’re including a photo, make sure you supply your designer with a high-resolution image.


3. Other Content:

  • Additional Text: If you have content that you want to add such as book quote, or praise from others, make sure that you keep the text short.
  • Author or Publisher Logo: Like most images, make sure you provide a high-resolution copy that is scalable with a transparent background for your designer to incorporate into the overall design.
  • Contact Text: Some authors or publishers like to include a web address or a social media icon to invite their readers to follow them. I would recommend only using two to three line items for any call to action text.

At the end of the day, the most important things to keep in mind about your back cover copy is that your content is readable and organized. Remember, the back copy is part of the overall book design. It should be just as visually appealing as the front cover.