Book Designer and Independent Publishing Consultant
I have helped bring more than twenty independently published books to market. Combining a keen eye for detail with industry-leading tools for design and testing, I provide a complete book design service that includes paperback, hardcover and most e-book formats. I work with both traditional printers and print-on-demand services, and I provide consultation on book production and distribution.
When designing a print book, my goal is to make it stand out while fitting in (alongside traditionally published books). Adhering to industry best practices and aesthetic principles, it is possible to create a self-published book that looks every bit as professional as your favourite bestseller!
We do judge a book by its cover — so it’s my job to ensure that your cover leaves a great first impression. My work with an author or publisher begins with a consultation to discuss your vision for the project. Perhaps you have specific ideas and/or artwork that is near and dear to you — or maybe you have only a vague idea of what you’re looking for. In any case, I’ll bring fresh ideas and provide you with multiple design concepts, while also listening to your needs and wants. My #1 criteria for success is a happy client!
In book design, the devil truly is in the details. Important nuances include font sizing and styles, margins, headings, page numbering, copyright text, justification and hyphenation — as well as decisions about paper colour and book dimensions. I provide recommendations based on the specific genre and style of a book, and I work to meet each client’s unique requirements and tastes.
Click on each of the images below to see a few sample pages from some of the books I have designed:
When it comes to e-books, I put on my techie hat and apply skills from my previous career as a software developer. E-book design has much in common with print design, but it also has some major differences. E-books are like quirky little websites, complete with HTML and CSS and metadata and more — so proper e-book design is as much a technical process as it is a creative one.
As a professional e-book designer, I know what to test for and how to ensure that your e-books will pass the most stringent requirements for a wide range of e-reading platforms, including Kindle, Kobo, iBooks and Nook devices.
“My indispensable book-partner”
A manuscript is not a book. And since the “book” part of the writing project is well beyond me, what a relief to have Mark Cameron take over all the book design issues. Every self-published author needs this kind of book-partner to take the project the last mile to publication: to take over when the manuscript ends; to visualize a professional finished product; to turn the digital file into an actual book; to realize the dream.
Over the past few weeks I’ve had the pleasure of watching Mark turn my manuscript into a bona fide book, and I couldn’t be happier. His attention to detail has resulted in a professional product from cover to cover. The interior design is smart and clean and highly readable with word-perfect text. Mark found and repaired a ton of glitches in my manuscript, on the way to that exciting first proof from the printer. This first experience at self-publishing is such a success that I now consider Catch Our Drift Productions as my indispensable book-partner.– PJ Reece, author of Story Structure Expedition: Journey to the Heart of a Story and Throw Mama From the Boat
“Nailed it on the first attempt”
Mark did an exceptional job on the layout for my book – “Loach Pilot.” I basically provided my manuscript and a picture for the front cover, and let him go to work; he nailed it on the first attempt. He came up with recommendations for the expanded title, front and back cover layout and interior design. I highly recommend him as a book designer for your next project.– Bruce Carnegie, author of Loach Pilot: Disarming the Contra War
After struggling unsuccessfully for months trying to format my book by myself, (“It’s easy!” everyone said…) I found a miracle worker by the name of Mark Cameron. Calm, professional, efficient and dependable, Mark took my jumble of files and turned them into an ebook and a paperback. He met his self-set deadlines, which he clearly communicated to me; asked relevant questions about style and placement; and was clearly comfortable working with the various programs, both in and out of Kindle/Amazon. Mark is a pleasure to work with and made all my self-publishing dreams come true!
I’ve worked in the publishing industry for 25+ years, and Mark has all the characteristics one looks for in a designer – and then some. I wholeheartedly recommend Mark Cameron for any kind of work he says he can do for you, and won’t hesitate to collaborate with him on my next project.– Janet Blaser, author/editor of “Why We Left: An Anthology of American Women Expats”
“A Pleasure to Work With”
It was a pleasure to work with Mark. I found him very responsive to my needs and he finished my book in a timely manner, no hassles. The end product was very readable and pleasing to the eye.– Kat Karpenko, author of Emma’s Ghost
“A Very Wise Choice”
Getting Mark to help with our book production was a very wise choice. He was great to work with, and his skills and knowledge helped us negotiate the complexities of the book publishing world. He worked hard to meet all of our deadlines and we were extremely happy with the finished product.– Michael Wilson, author of Adventure on Whalebone Island
“Strong work ethic … client responsiveness … collaborative mindset”
I have known Mark for almost 20 years, first as a colleague and after as a business partner. In his former role as CEO of Techneos Systems, Mark demonstrated excellent communication skills. His responsibilities were vast and included writing strategic and business plans, designing marketing tag lines for new products, drafting and editing software user manuals, sharing news with employees, and preparing key messages to clients and shareholders.
Mark has a natural ability to convey messages in a concise yet eloquent manner that is adaptable to a diverse audience. I also admire him for his strong work ethic, client responsiveness, collaborative mindset, resilience in working through arduous tasks, and ability to provide constructive feedback while maintaining positive relationships.– Anne-Marie Pham, Co-founder and Board Director, Techneos Systems Inc.