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.
- 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.)
- 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.
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!
- 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.
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.
- 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.