How to make your erotica or erotic romance book advert shine!

I wrote before about how to make an erotic romance book advert in GIMP for Twitter. That article covered the basics, and this one builds on what I explained in the other article. This tutorial is a bit more advanced, so make sure you’re confident with making a simple advert before following this tutorial.

Click here to learn how to make a basic advert. That tutorial was written with the best sizes for a Twitter ad, but I find those sizes work well for Google Plus, too.

In this more advanced tutorial, I’m going to use the same advert I made in the first tutorial to show you how to make the text stand out so it’s more readable, then I’m going to show you how to filter your background picture so your book cover stands out! There are many other things you can do with picture editing to make pictures work together, but these are the easiest tweaks that will make your advert look more professional.

Part 1: How to make a text outline:

1. Go to one of the text layers and click on it to make sure it’s selected. Over the blue highlight, right click, then from that menu, select “alpha to selection.”
GIMP alpha to selection how to make book advert Katie Douglas

2. Your text will now have a weird blurry line around the edge:
GIMP alpha to selection how to make book advert Katie Douglas

3. Go to the menu at the top of the screen, click “select” then “grow”:
GIMP select grow how to make book advert Katie Douglas

4. You will get a menu like this. Choosing one or two pixels is enough on an advert of this size:

GIMP select grow pixels GIMP select grow how to make book advert Katie Douglas

5. Now that wavy border around the text has moved outwards in every direction by two pixels:

GIMP select grow how to make book advert Katie Douglas

6. Next, make a new layer. An option screen will come up. Just hit “OK” and it will make the right layer.

7. Get the bucket fill tool and make sure the main color is black (if your writing is white) or white (if your writing is black). You can play around with the colors but it’s tricky to get them to match the advert, so stick with black or white for now.

8. Make sure you’re working in the new layer you just created, not the text layer, or this will go weird. Click inside the wavy line surrounding your text. Everything inside the wavy line should go black, just like in the following picture. Click and drag your new layer so it’s listed below the text layer in the list of layers:

When the layer is in the correct place, your picture will look like this:

10. Go to “select” then click “none” to get rid of the wavy line around your writing.

GIMP select none how to unselect book advert katie douglas

Here is what the lettering should now look like:

11. Congratulations, you just made a text border! Now do it again to any other text on the page, and your advert text will be clear and professional-looking! Don’t forget to save and export your picture!

12. Here’s a before and after so you can see the difference this has made to the overall feel of the advert:

Before.
After.

Part 2: How to filter the background image:

Now let’s sort out that background. It’s mostly fine, but if you want to perfect your advert a little more, the background is definitely drawing attention away from the message and the book cover.

1. Make a new layer between the background picture and the layer with your book cover on it:

2. Next, select the layer with your book cover on it. Go to the color picker and select a dark-ish color from your book cover’s background:

3. Now go to the bucket fill tool. Change the opacity (how see-through the color is) until it’s very low, somewhere between 20 and 30% will be perfect:

4. Select the layer between the book cover and the background image, and click your bucket fill on it. The background should subtly change color like this:

And Finally…

To make the book cover stand out even more, you can put an outline around the book cover exactly the same way you made an outline around your text, so you get something like this:

Here’s a before and after for how the advert looked after following the first tutorial, and how this advert looked after following this more advanced tutorial:

Before.
After.

And voila, a shinier book advert you can use on Twitter, Google+ and other social media platforms!

Lots of love,
Katie xxxx

Other articles in this series:
Spanking writing prompts
Erotic romance: Where should the story begin?
The main spanking scenarios for spanking erotic romance writers
Erotica words for spanking and anal sex writers in BDSM erotic romance
Naming the characters in your BDSM erotic romance
How to make a Twitter advert for erotic romance authors

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KatieDouglas

I am the author of several spanking, BDSM and ageplay books, as well as the artist behind Corner Time Now, the Saturday-updating spanking and CP webcomic. I play the ukulele (badly), I like instant noodles way more than anyone should, and I'm currently in grad school studying an obscure science.

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