Some things are made oh-so much more difficult than they have to be...
As part of this process getting the cover art illustration for my upcoming book, the artist asked me a a simple, basic question about if I could find out the spec requirements by the publisher. Such things being far out of my area of expertise, I used the Customer Support links on the website and sent in my inquiry. Simple, basic. What are the specs for the cover art of a book that 5.25" x 8"?
The responses I started getting back were bewildering. Not that I didn't understand them, but that they were doing everything except answering them. Check this link here, look at this link there, download this software, do that.
Please, no, just let me know the specs for the cover art of a book that 5.25" x 8". Please. Surely you have to have that information at your fingertips.
The level of frustration trying to get a straight answer was almost comical, if it wasn't so annoying. It reached its peak in my last communication Customer Support. That's when their rep's email said, "I really hope this answered your question," and -- I swear to you -- the email literally didn't say anything! That's not hyperbole. What the email had said was -- thank you for your inquiry. I'm sorry you haven't gotten the answer you wanted. We try to assist and educate our members. And then, "I really hope this answered your question."
I passed along as much of the convoluted information as I could to my artist, in hopes that something valuable would sneak through, and she said she thought it should help.
Then, to start to get a jump on the process, I look one last look on their website and dug deeper and deeper, and I came across a brief item that said --
“Please upload an image (jpeg or tiff) at the size of 5.5” x 8.5” (width and length) and with an image resolution of at least 300 DPL. Please not that images uploaded at a different size will be proportionally sized to fit. If you submit an image that contains text, please make sure that all text is at least 0.5” from the outer edges.”
It seemed sort of specific and even valuable, so I sent this too along to the artist. She wrote back -- "This is great! That's really what i was after!"
I mean, honestly, how difficult would it have been for Customer Service to have that at their desk?? It has to be a pretty basic question. "What are the spec requirements for the freaking cover?" I know that this information changes slightly depending on the size of the book, but seriously, it's not hard to have the information for all the standard sizes. Or just to have a sheet that says the width of the art should be .25" more than the book's width, and the length .5" longer.
But...mission accomplished. The end is in sight.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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