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Chris A. Baird | May 27, 2020
Can I use the same illustration for several book covers if they’re part of a book series, and each book has its book titles set in a different color?

You might be asking this question because you want to make sure that you will not get into trouble when publishing your books online. It can also be that you want to see if you can reuse the same illustration that you already have and save money on that.

Matching Covers

Before I answer today's question, I want to let you know that you are not going to want to miss the fourth answer to this question. It can save you a lot of money, we're talking about the subject of covers for your book.

Now, let's get right on into it. The question that was sent to me was, can I use the same illustration for several book covers if they're part of a book series, and each book has its book titles set in a different color?

This is an excellent question and it's something that shows up often when you have multiple books in a series or multiple books if by the same author. The answer can be a little bit surprising.

So, where to start? Before I get going, grab my free Self-Publishing Secrets Checklist. Now, let's get into it.

When I first started creating books, I was aware of the importance of making sure that those covers did match each other. You'll notice if you go and look at my books on Amazon, Chris A. Baird books on Amazon, the original ones, they follow a very similar style.

I saw the style of somebody I like who is doing book covers, I went on the equivalent of Upwork that time, I was paying at $80 a cover and they were unique pictures. They were actually really high-quality maybe even higher quality than they needed to be.

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But they all sort of matched a very similar style. Then, I had multiple covers produced along those same lines at least for my first several books. I began to understand exactly how important getting the covers in your series to match, actually is in terms of making a lot of sales.

Look At Popular Book Series

Now, here's the thing for the answers. The first thing is yes, you can reuse the same image that you have. Your illustration can be like your all multiple books.

The second thing, is it strategic to go about using the same image? You have choices here and that's important to remember. Look at your favorite authors and where they have a series of books.

Are they using the same cover image? Have you ever consider why they may not be doing that? Why they were using different images for each book?

Check out this related article: Can Authors Use Same Cover For Print And eBook?

For example, if you look at Game of Thrones or Hunger Games or Narnia or any of these other book titles, you'll notice that the different books in the series all have different illustrations on them.

Though, they may be of the same style and we'll get back to that in a little bit when we get to number four. And that's why with number three, you will also going to want to look at the genre that you have.

So if you're publishing in fantasy or fiction or nonfiction, you'll notice there's a pattern that emerges. Your readers are going to judge your book based upon their own interpretation of how covers like that have been used in the past by other authors within the same genre.

Maximize Your Sales

You are not going to deviate too much. It's a way we signal to our readers what type of book they can expect. In addition, if I were doing a book on let's say World War II, I really want to use the same photo or illustration multiple times on that thing.

So, let's get into number four and this is the secret I was telling you about in the beginning. It is that you are going to maximize sales when the covers match each other.

The style needs to be very very close and we can bundle them together. People love collecting books in a series when they all sort of match the same thing.

Check out this related article: After Self-Publishing What Is The Best Way To Market A Publication For Free?

Sometimes, even to the extent that you can put them together in a form like a puzzle on the screen. And that increases sales drastically and we are trying to do that.

So what have you found? Have you tried reusing the same image multiple times? There is no problem legally, doing that.

Amazon has no problem with reusing as long as you own the cover. But perhaps, it might be something you want to consider. Check out my other blogs and videos for more answers to questions like this.

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