CareerCup got their new book cover by running a design contest:
Cover for next edition of Amazon's #1 Best-Selling Interview Book
Check out CareerCup's Book cover contest…
We sell interview prep books for technology careers.
What's your vision?
I am looking for a new cover for a programming interview book. Getting to the point so that you don't miss this: This book is part of a series. That series comes with a template. You must follow it. Your job essentially is to pick a new background color and new image. Do not change the fonts or overall layout. (You will however probably need to make a minor tweak to the font size.) IF YOU ONLY READ TWO THINGS, KNOW THIS: 1. There is a template. You must follow it. Zero exceptions. This book must match the other in the series. 2. I hate, with an extreme passion, stupid overdone stock art. This includes pictures of computers, people, puzzle pieces, suits and ties, cracks, eggs, locks and keys, etc. Every time I do a book cover, I see the same images recycled. In fact, I rarely like images that are obviously about programming or interviewing, as they almost all look like stupid overdone stock art. --- COVER TEXT --- - Title: Cracking the Coding Interview - Subtitle: 150 Programming Questions and Solutions - Author: Gayle Laakmann McDowell - Edition: 6th Edition (If you choose, you can write the edition as "v 6.0" or something similar.) - Author Blurb/Bio: Author of Cracking the PM Interview and Cracking the Tech Career. (It is not strictly required that this is on the cover, but I prefer it.) --- BOOK DETAILS --- - Description of Book: it is the major book that programmers get to prepare for interviews. - Readers: Mostly male. However, I do not want anything gender biased. It is not okay to have pictures of guys in suits on the cover. --- THE TEMPLATE --- This book is part of a series. It should MATCH the covers (attached) for Cracking the PM Interview and Cracking the Tech Career. This means: same black bar at bottom, same fonts, pick a center image (see details below), pick a background color (see details below), same layout of title, etc. See attached photoshop file. This is all provided for you. I've made your life easier - use it! --- BACKGROUND COLOR: --- - I like a mild gradient, as seen in PM Interview and Tech Career. - No orange or blue background. These were already used in PM Interview and Tech Career. - Prefer not white or black. PM Interview and Tech Career both use a bold background images. - Pink and purple are probably too girly for this book. - By process of elimination, this essentially limits you to green, yellow, or red. - If you use yellow or red, be sure it doesn't get too close to orange. This could look too similar to PM Interview. - Tend to prefer a brighter color, but it's really specific to the image. --- CENTER IMAGE --- This is where it gets tricky (and, essentially, where all your work is). WHAT I HATE: - Absolutely, under no condition, anything "male": briefcases, men, ties, suits, etc. People WILL accuse me of being sexist. - No computers, tablets, or phones. Things that say "technology" (but not specifically "programming") are not good fits because all my books are about technology. Also, these images tend to look really cliched. - No cracks or eggs. Or cracked eggs. - I rarely like lightbulbs, mazes, brains/heads, keys, or people. Designers keep submitted these and I keep rejecting them. Be warned. - I don't like cliched stockart. Hate it, in fact. (FYI - I consider Tech Career's artwork to be a bit overdone, but that wasn't my choice of design. I do like PM Interview's artwork though.) WHAT I LIKE: - I prefer unique, but elegant/clean images that don't look like really common stock art. - A few image ideas: chess board with 8 queens, tic tac toe, towers of hanoi, a scale/balance, a semicolon, matrix, stacks, queues, binary trees, graphs, linked lists, recursion. - Again, you really do not need to pick from one of those ideas above. It's hard to make any of those images work without being cheesy. ADDITIONAL SUGGESTIONS: - Images that are just one color tend to look drab. A little extra splash of color often helps. - Your image doesn't need to be strongly related to programming or interviewing. In fact, I rarely like images that are. They tend to look cheesy. Again: YOU DO NOT HAVE TO USE AN IMAGE THAT "OBVIOUSLY" FITS PROGRAMMING / INTERVIEWING. The vast majority of those suck. None of the images I've liked so far are "obviously" about programming or interviewing. For the 5th edition, I went with a mathy-looking graphic rather than anything related to programming or interviewing. Most images related to programming and interviewing look like cheesy stock art. I hate hate hate cheesy stock art.
Why my previous book covers: - Cracking the Coding Interview, 5th Edition: I picked this because it's a mathy looking object. It made the book look "serious." It has no particular relation to programming or interviewing. - Cracking the PM Interview: This image is based on a famous PM question: how would you design an alarm clock for the blind? I liked the uniqueness of it. It connected a bit to the book, but not in a cliched, obvious way. It's not the kind of image you would expect to see on this book. - Cracking the Tech Career: I actually don't really like this image. My publisher picked it. It's not terrible, but a bit too much like stock art. ----------- How I Rate Designs - The vast majority of designs I'm eliminating because the images are a bit too cliched (e.g., a computer or a maze) or look too much like stock art. (Or because they don't match the template.) - I actually go by 99design's ratings. 1 star = has potential. 2 star = right direction. 3 star = good design. 4 star = great design. 5 star = leading contender. - As of one day before the contest is ending, no one has a 4 or 5. (Frankly, I think that'd be difficult to do. The only thing to distinguish one design from the next is the center image.) - Everyone "still in the running" has a 1, 2, or 3. The majority of those are 2s. There's one or two 3s, and a few 1s (mostly because there's a major change I want but I think it'll be better after that). - Normally I like to give "positive feedback." It's difficult here. Because there's relatively little flexibility on the designs (you're really just picking an image and a background color), it's typically difficult to say what I *do* like about an eliminated design. If I liked the image, then I wouldn't have eliminated it. And if I don't like the image, then there's not much left around to like.
Every design category has flexible pricing for all budgets. Book cover starts at CHF 309.
Full copyright with production-ready files for digital and/or print.
It all began with a design brief.
A quick, interactive guide helped them understand their design style and captured exactly what they needed in their book cover.
Designers across the globe delivered design magic.
CareerCup collaborated with designers to refine their ideas
When design entries come in, you can rate them so designers know what you’re looking for in your logo design.
99designs has great collaboration tools so you can pinpoint and capture your ideas
And then… they selected a winner!
Along the way, they met lots of talented designers…
We think contests are a super fun way to get design.
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