People Do Judge A Book By Its Cover – How To Create A Cover That Sells with Nick Zelinger

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Nick ZelingerWelcome to this episode of the Real Fast Results podcast!  Nick Zelinger is today’s special guest.  He is a publishing and graphic design extraordinaire who has put together many covers for bestselling books and covers that have won awards.  He’s won awards for his designs as well.  It’s important, as an author, to know what to watch out for when it comes to having a cover designed, and that’s what Nick is here to help you understand.  Welcome to the show Nick…

Promise: How to Create a Book Cover that Sells

Thanks for having me.  First of all, if you are thinking of publishing a book, or if you have already published a book and you aren’t getting good sales or have gotten some bad reviews, you may want to consider hiring a professional book designer.  The tendency today in independent publishing, self-publishing, is to do it yourself, and that’s, for lack of a better term, a crap-shoot.  You are going to be in the wild wild west of not knowing what you want to do, not meeting the printer’s specifications, and just not having a very professional design.

Download the Complete PDF Show Notes Free for this Episode

I think that if you’re serious about publishing your book… This is a business.  Independent publishing, or self-publishing, is a business.  You’ve got to treat it that way.  To do that, you’ve got to hire professionals.  I would say, first and foremost, for authors who design their own books, or want to, take a hard look at your skills, and be honest, and step back a little bit because you really do need to be very objective about your goals.  It’s a profession, and you get what you pay for in this industry, so you really do need to hire a professional.

Do people really judge a book by its cover? Absolutely, and in fact, it’s the gateway to your book. Research shows that we have less than 10 seconds before a potential buyer makes a decision on a book cover Click To TweetIt’s a subjective thing, but it’s something that makes them want to go to a bookshelf, pick it up, and look at the back, or click on the thumbnail at Amazon to see what the “Look Inside” feature is.  So you’ve got a very, very short timespan to really capture someone’s attention, no matter what the genre.

Download the Complete PDF Show Notes Free for this Episode


  • You only have a few minutes to get someone’s attention
  • Curb appeal
  • Hiring a book designer
  • Joining author author/publishing organizations
  • Consulting with a designer
  • What it a professional looking cover entails
  • Having a branded look

Download the Complete PDF Show Notes Free for this Episode

Connecting with Nick

If anyone needs to contact me, you can do so at  I’m always happy to consult with anyone about their books.  I live and breathe “book design,” so I’m happy to talk to anyone about book design.  My website contains a virtual portfolio of my work.  My authors and clients have gotten over 100 international and national book awards over the last 20 years, so I’m kind of backed into this business as a graphic designer.  I’ve learned my way through a lot of errors and mistakes, but it’s an exciting industry to be in.  I wish a lot of authors the best of luck with their endeavors in this.


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About the Author ()

Daniel Hall is a bestselling author, speaker, publisher, nurse, attorney and host the Real Fast Results podcast. He is also the creator of other highly popular “Real Fast” brand of training products. He left law practice 10 years ago to build his publishing business and has never looked back. Daniel is a true serial entrepreneur and his list of URLs is longer than a piece of paper, so you can check out Daniel’s hub at or the podcast right here on this site!

Comments (1)

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  1. Dr. Ron Rosenthal says:


    First, I tried to download the pdf’s for the episode. It kept telling me my address was in the wrong format. Second, I expected a session on how to make book overs, but only got, “Hire a professional.” This is nonsense.

    Dr. Ron Rosenthal

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