I heart books.

Working in the publishing industry as a book designer allows me to work with some of the most interesting people, on some of the most interesting projects.

When I made the decision some years ago to focus on books, my resolve was aided not only by the projects themselves, but the clients that I had the pleasure of dealing with. And it has been my experience that visiting a publishing house is a lot like visit the Island of Misfit Toys.  A wondrous place where unique, passionate and intelligent people dedicate themselves to story telling.

I am really fortunate with my clients and get to work on some really inspiring, brain-wringing, hilarious, challenging and exciting briefs.

Here is just a tiny selection of the interesting briefs I’ve worked on in the last year.

Burn Bright Marianne de Pierres

I’ll admit to having to restrain myself from not scrambling over the desk and greedily snatching this brief out of the publisher’s hand whilst being briefed. This awesome story required an equally awesome cover for a young adult market. Many concepts where tried before the publisher picked the cover image from a shortlist selection I had found on deviant art. Getting permission to use the image was an extra challenge: roping a Polish speaking friend into calling the artist at 7am in Warsaw and asking him if he’d received any of my emails ‘Grunt… no… send them again’ Thanks champ! And we had our image.

Shift Em Bailey

Another young adult cover this brief was super tricky and one of those brain wringing projects that are too good not to accept but require a lot of thinking, pondering, researching and concepting. I think I created more concepts for this cover than any other, yet throughout it all the editor was completely supportive and creatively involved. The book deals with identity, possible mental illness and back stabbing. While also being a psychological thriller – easy huh? Well thanks to awesome collaboration the final product works incredibly well (even if I do say so myself). And is even getting some great advance feedback here at a Tapestry of Words blog.

Inside Out Maria V. Snyder

After successfully rebranding and creating new covers to the author’s previous two series* the publisher asked me to tackle the author’s latest series, which took a turn from the magical into the dystopian. I made a conscious decision not to use black and instead with the publishers whole-hearted agreement, we explored white/bright colours in an effort to separate this book from its competitors.

It is winning in a poll against the other international covers for this title over here at Harlequin Paranormal Romance.

My Life Tristan Bancks

I didn’t design the cover for this, I just had the pleasure of designing the internals and typesetting the book. One of the reasons I love working on young adult books is they often fit my sense of humour. I think poop and fart jokes are hilarious, and this book had that in spades. I spent most of the time typesetting this book giggling and admiring the illustrators renderings of hover poos, scabs and fist fighting grannies.

Right now my plate is full of book briefs, from cover design, to internal design and all the way to typesetting 368 page coffee-table books. In fact while working on a couple my current briefs I have had to stop myself from picking up the phone and gushing to the publisher to thank them for sending the project my way.

I love that my job makes me so happy. As well as bringing an extra visual dimension to the reader’s experience.

Viva La Book!

*My covers for the Maria Snyder Study and Glass series have been so well received that I have also sold the designs to the publishers in France, Italy and Spain!

Take a look at the originals and the amended international versions.

My Australian release covers:

Italian covers

French covers

  • I love the Shift cover! It’s quite complex but clean.

  • Em

    I love the cover of Shift too (but possibly I’m a bit biased)! You’ve hit exactly the right note of creepy vs pretty. Everyone I show it to comments on how striking it is. Thanks so much. Cheers, Em.

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  • Thanks Julia!
    I am so glad you’re happy with the cover Em, it was a great brief to work on ^_^

  • Sandy

    Wow the cover for Inside Out is much better than the US and UK covers great job and the cover for Burn Bright is just gorgeous!