Hugh Howey
Hugh Howey

Bestselling author of Wool and other books. Currently sailing around the world.

The Magic of Jason Gurley

I’ve promoted a few cover artists here on the site, but I wanted to give Jason Gurley one more shout-out. Jason has done a few covers for me now. The new SAND series of covers look amazing. And he’s working on a limited edition set of hardbacks of WOOL, SHIFT, and DUST that we should be announcing soon (not sure if this counts as an announcement. I’m saying it doesn’t).

What Jason excels at is the hardest thing about making a cover look professional: It’s the typography. It’s the font used for the title and the author’s name. Jason invests in great fonts, and he knows how to throw a design together that makes a book stand out. Check out some of his ready-made covers here. And here’s a link to his portfolio (where you can see some of my books with their soon-to-be-updated covers).

Jason was recently laid off from his day job. I’m hoping his book sales and cover design pick up a little more so he can do what he loves full-time. But you won’t be doing him any favors if you reach out and commission a cover from him. You’ll be doing yourself and your book a favor. Working with Jason is a highlight. If you ask him to design a cover, you’ll often get a few mock-ups to choose from. The hardest thing you’ll do, other than writing your book, is picking just one cover to go with. You’ll want them all.

Email Jason if you need a cover. Even if you’re in the editing phase, now’s the time to lock down the artwork so you can get the book in front of readers.

 

17 replies to “The Magic of Jason Gurley”

Hugh, I truly appreciate how you continue to forge new paths in the writing and publishing (and pricing) worlds. Best part? You aren’t keeping it all a secret.

Thanks for taking writing out of the ivory tower (ivory silo?) and being so open about the process. It helps the rest of us, a lot.

I have a novel-near-done, and will be contacting Jason Gurley.

PS: Your link to my review of Wool still drives traffic to my blog. Thanks!

I don’t know Jason Gurley, but I’ve seen his covers. As a professional designer, I must say his work is fantastic. I’ve tried making a few covers, and it was hard (though to be fair, my background is industrial design and UX, not graphic), but Jason Gurley makes them look easy.

Hugh is also correct in saying thay good graphic designers are meticulous about fonts.

As a reader, a professional looking cover creates anticipation, and feel that this work will be a worthwhile read (yes people judge books by the cover).

Is there any cover artist you CAN recommend highly enough? Lol. Jason’s work is great, I will seriously consider him for my covers. Whose (genius) idea was it for the xacto knife on your cover?

Jason has so far done six covers for me, all for upcoming works I’m publishing. The first is for my memoir about my life as an English teacher in Slovakia of the early 1990s. When I approached Jason with my book synopsis, he graciously accepted, even though he doesn’t ordinarily design non-fiction covers. The result was one hell of a fantastic cover. He captured the essence of my story.

The second set are for a short story collection I’m writing and will publish one at a time, all centred around a fictionalised version of a dear friend of mine and opera singer par excellence. This series is also a far cry from Jason’s usual repertoire, but again he accepted and created the PERFECT covers for the stories.

When I think of the kind of people I enjoy working with, Jason Gurley is tops. He’s friendly, courteous and more than anything, a true professional. He deserves all the praise and more for his stupendous work.

I have to underscore Hugh’s comments. Jason did the cover for Mark One and it is excellent. He is currently working on a cover for a set of short stories [Another Universe, Vol One], and I anticipate it too will be excellent.

Hurry up – generate more business for Jason – so he doesn’t have to return to the 9 – 5 dragging routine!!

Amazing covers! Jason is very talented. I agree with you about the importance of typography/font. It’s a talent that sets a good cover designers apart even amongst other talented designers who don’t have the art of typography down.

Hey, I knew Jason Gurley before he was famous! Seriously… I’ll chime in on the praise here, because he is an extraordinarily accomplished designer, as well as being a great guy. He not only listens to what you want, he goes one step beyond and often gives you more than you asked for.

Jason did my cover for “Silo Secrets: DANIEL” which is published through Kindle Worlds, and his expertise is part of the reason it has gotten so much attention.

Thanks, Hugh, for letting the world know that Jason is available for more cover work. I don’t doubt that he’ll get it.

Hmm, those covers look beautiful. But I have to admit I want a cover more like a comic book, since I am writing about a superheroine. This is along the lines of I get to pick my cover artist instead of a publisher, and I want something that fits the tone of my short story. I have a professional comic book artist/writer lined up.

Still. What kind of money would people spend on a short story, especially beginning authors?

If it helps, I paid Jason $150 for the covers of the first five stories in my upcoming series. I thought that was a real bargain considering his talents.

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