30 book covers for Nanowrimo Authors (results and video)

I wanted to participate in Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month) so I offered to do some book covers for Nanowrimo authors. Here are the results.

I did them all in under one day, so they aren’t my finest work,  but some of them are plenty good enough to use. I made duplicates of a few. I did over 30 altogether but I can’t count well, I think a few may be missing here.

I also made a video but it was about 20 hours long… I sped it all up to make it 20 minutes but you can’t really see what’s happening – it’s like a book cover design strobe light.

Authors, if you like one of these, it should be big enough to use, otherwise email me and I’ll send a bigger file.



Several of the authors who submitted already had covers that were very good:


Love this cover – my covers tend to be messy and bold, but I appreciate the clean minimalism. I don’t think I could do anything better.

book cover design

This cover for Song of Locke is part of a successful Kickstarter campaign and looks like it’s been professionally done. I can’t improve on it.

cover design

This cover for “Going Crazy” is really busy, but somehow all the elements balance out OK. I like it, and I could make something simpler but I don’t think that would give it the bold edginess it has now.


About Derek Murphy

Hey there! I'm a philosophy dropout and book cover designer with a PhD in Literature. After spending a decade as a starving artist, I vowed to create the life of freedom my restless spirit demands. I covet a cabin full of cats, where I can write young adult fantasy novels and do a few editorial critiques to pay for my cake addiction. Sometimes I live in castles. FREE GUIDE: Book Marketing is Dead.


  1. That is awesome. I am so thankful you selected my book as one of covers, and it came out amazing. Thank you for taking the time to do this.

  2. Nice one Derek, a very selfless project, I loved seeing what you came up with for me, as well as the 29 other people. Some great covers in there 🙂

  3. I LOVE IT (both of them). Thanks Derek!

  4. Derek – Cheers for mine, I really like the way you’ve styled Jezero Station!

  5. These are amazing, thank you so much!! I love the multiple versions.

  6. Great job! They turned out really well for such a short frame of time. Thanks so much for tackling mine, it came out very evocative. And your timing is pretty rad, too, ‘coz it’s totally my birthday today.
    Best birthday surprise ever.

  7. Thank you Derek! I love the cover. Watching your artistic process throughout the video was awesome too.

  8. Thanks, Derek! I showed the designs you did to my sister (she has done artwork for my covers in the past, and is attending art college right now with the intent to go into illustration) and she loved them. Granted, it’ll be at least another year before the entire trilogy is ready, but in the meantime I’m going to admire your handiwork! I love the variety of covers you did. Amazing work, especially with such a short time frame!

  9. Derek, thank you so much! I didn’t see the image above, but I watched the video and saw you picked my Ash and Flame as one of your covers. What a fantastic job, and I can’t thank you enough! Awesome of you to take time out of your busy day to do such a nice thing for authors here.

  10. I loved watching the video and seeing how each cover came together. Especially the typography and the lights and smoke layers.

    Thank you again!

  11. Serena Bianca De Matteis

    Hi Derek, sorry for being so late with my huge THANK YOU! I loved watching the video – that was sort of hypnotic, loved all the covers, but it was overall exciting to see the live making of my own cover *_* That was like a dream! I feel I was so lucky to grab this opportunity. I’ll contact you privately as soon as I’m ready with the english version of my book. Thank you so much, again and again.

  12. Late to the party, but big ups for including Stockholm Syndrome. I’m also learning from other people’s covers. The Cheater’s Guide to NaNoWriMo with the little viking and hashtags made me giggle. Your fonts are masterful–Back Woods, for example. Voices of the Apocalypse, with the fonts and the smoke and dark imagery with a hint of light, wow. Thanks again.

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