How to Create a Book Cover in Microsoft Publisher

If e-books and e-readers just can’t replace the feeling of cracking a spine and holding a real book in your hand, let Microsoft Publisher help you customize your own book cover. With Publisher, you’re able to put your book’s best face forward with complete control over the images, colors and text placement for your next novel or memoir. Be ready for when the world judges your book by its cover with Microsoft Publisher.

Beige book standing isolated
Put your book's best face forward with a Publisher-created cover.
credit: vladimirkim3722/iStock/Getty Images

Step

Launch Publisher 2013 and click the “More Blank Page Sizes” button. Click the “Custom” button and enter your book cover dimensions. Brainstorm the type of book you’re designing for. For example, a trade-size paperback will be larger than a mass-market paperback romance novel, but smaller than a large hardcover. Enter the dimensions on the “Create New Page Size” window and click the “OK” button.

Step

Click the “Page Design” tab, then click the “Background” button. Click the “More Backgrounds” link to open the “Format Background” window. Use this to give your book cover a full page design. Click the “Solid fill” radio button for a single color background, or experiment with “Gradient,” “Pattern” or “Texture fill” for eye-catching designs. Choose “Picture fill” if you have a full-size image to use for the background, such as a beach scene.

Step

Click the “Insert” tab and click the “Draw Text Box” button on the ribbon. Draw a box near the top or bottom of the cover where you want the title to be. Type the book title. Click the “Home” tab and use the Font area of the ribbon to format the next. Keep in mind the text should be clear and easy to read, especially if you have a competing background design. Make light text on a dark background or dark text on a light background, and make sure the size of the text is readable for someone standing a few feet away in a bookstore.

Step

Add another text box and type your name, then reformat the text in the same way, with your name slightly smaller than the book title. Add any additional text boxes, such as author blurbs you’ve received, awards or nominations, or text about the book being a sequel or part of a trilogy.

Step

Click the “Pictures” button on the Insert tab’s ribbon. Browse to an image to use for the book cover and double-click it. This is something you can do instead of making an image as the full-size background. This is also a way to insert an author photo or book company logo. You can also click the “Online Pictures” button on the ribbon and search for clip art to use for the cover, but make sure to choose something that stands out and isn’t too generic, so readers understand what your book is about.

Step

Save the file. It may be helpful to print out the book cover and tape it to a book of similar size. Hold it out at arm’s length and see what grabs you, and which elements might be missing or unclear, then make any adjustments as needed.