I used to use CreateSpace, which was an arm of Amazon, to make paperbacks. CreateSpace was a nice platform to work with. Then Amazon decided to shift all books in CreateSpace to Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). Up to then, KDP was just for publishing ebooks.
In my opinion, KDP as a paperback publishing platform sucks. It’s difficult to get to the cover dimensions just right. I lost count of the hours I wasted in vain on that one. And I wasn’t the only one who had problems. Two of my cover artists struggled with getting the full paperback cover to accept their pdf files, too. One cover artist was able to do it on the first try. But the problem is, I like being able to do this stuff on my own as much as possible in case something happens to a cover artist and I need to take care of things myself.
I finally settled on their template where I uploaded my ebook cover for the front cover and then going with a plain background for the spine and back of the book.
Here’s an example of what I’m talking about:
At least Eye of the Beholder came out looking good on the front cover. About half the time, the cover was a bit “off” when it went to print. Note the black lines on the edges of these two covers.
I did not put those lines in myself. My spine and back covers on those books are black, but the front cover background is supposed to be yellow all the way to the edges. There is something in their printer that doesn’t make the final product “off” at some edge somewhere. Like I said, this happened half the time to me. I know I could return the books and get them reprinted, but I have better things to do with my time than get into another fight with Amazon. (I have enough on my plate with dragging out my Copyright Registration letters every time they have a fit over one of my books.)
I decided to give Draft2Digital (D2D) a try with their paperbacks.
At this point, I’m going to give a shout out to Book Brush. Book Brush is what I use to make ebooks and paperbacks. I used to use GIMP, but Book Brush is a lot easier. I do the bulk of the work in Book Brush. Once in a while, I use GIMP to add something (like swirly lines) to the cover.
I successfully created two paperbacks I’m happy with using D2D.
A Deceptive Wager paperback
A Perilous Marriage paperback