The Practical Nomad blog

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Coming soon: New edition of "The Practical Nomad"

As I've mentioned, I'm busy finalizing the forthcoming 5th edition of The Practical Nomad: How To Travel Around The World, which will be in bookstores, "inshallah", this fall. (Of course, you can still get the current 4th edition now.)

I'd like your help designing my new book!

I've just gotten the first mockups of possible covers. Here are full-size versions of five alternative designs. I think the most promising two are the ones below:

book cover book cover

Let me know what you think in the comments. Which do you prefer? (Feel free to comment on any of these five, not just the two above.) What would you change?

Link | Posted by Edward on Wednesday, 23 February 2011, 17:43 ( 5:43 PM)

I'm excited for the next edition of "The Practical Nomad." My money's on the cover on the lefthand side. Looks great!

Posted by: Tony Z, 23 February 2011, 19:06 ( 7:06 PM)

Edward, I agree with Tony. I really like the globe cover. The compass looks to "clip-art-y" to me. Glad you're getting a new edition out. It's certainly a changing world to travel in. Travel-Share-Enjoy Strangers!

Posted by: Clark Gilman, 23 February 2011, 20:00 ( 8:00 PM)

I like the cover with key board but should include a phone, and I-pad since it is the technology that makes it easy to be a nomad. Maybe each device screen should show same aspect of the globe.

Posted by: Harry, 23 February 2011, 21:43 ( 9:43 PM)

Definitely, the first one. I agree with Clark. But at the same time, the technology-style cover could make a point on originality alhough the actual one is not the one I would like to see.

Posted by: Juan Manuel Reina Gil, 23 February 2011, 21:51 ( 9:51 PM)

Green Cover with globe.

Posted by: Chris, 23 February 2011, 22:09 (10:09 PM)

I like the first one best.

Posted by: Anonymous, 23 February 2011, 22:15 (10:15 PM)

First one.

Posted by: Anonymous, 23 February 2011, 22:16 (10:16 PM)

I like the Green and Blue one with the grass and globe. Those colors are attention getters and the bicyclist are a nice touch since that is what I like to do when traveling, but now I expect a good section of cycling in the book...

Suggestions to add to it...since people like the idea of technology maybe on the bottom half where you have the globe you can also incorporate some type of keyboard, or technological device.

I also like the image and idea of a compass so maybe you could make the "O" in NOMAD a drawing of compass, a picture wouldn't match the font.

I am looking forward to a new version of your book, will it be in digital form as well? I hope so.

Posted by: A.H., 23 February 2011, 22:57 (10:57 PM)

The one on the left is the best of the five, but I think you need a more "modern"-looking design -- one which evokes a more 21st Century feel.

Posted by: Ben Bangs, 23 February 2011, 23:35 (11:35 PM)

As one who devoured a previous edition and, in fact, went around the world, I opt for the compass. I used neither bikes nor portable technology en route during my 'RTW trip but I did, on occasion, use a compass. Thanks for your efforts on behalf of all travelers.

Posted by: Ed McDonagh, 24 February 2011, 06:56 ( 6:56 AM)

I really like the 2nd cover of the 5 with the woman gazing out over the ocean. These two versions on the blog don't really appeal to me but that one does.

Posted by: JC Schmit, 24 February 2011, 07:58 ( 7:58 AM)

The first one, green with bicyclists. And globe. None of the others is in the competition. If the green one absolutely can't fly (or bike or train or walk...), the brown one that you listed as your other most promising. Look out at what is around you while you travel, not at your computer. What's simple or challenging your travel skills about depending on a GPS?

Posted by: Mimi, 24 February 2011, 09:04 ( 9:04 AM)

I definitely like the globe and bicycle cover.

Posted by: wade marlow, 24 February 2011, 12:02 (12:02 PM)

The mockup on the right is very artsy, but doesn't very easily explain itself as as travel book. Also, some of the text is too thin and faint. I like the one on the is looks like people are traveling and there is a reference to the world. Your name and the 5th edition info needs to be more prominent...even if you have to cover up Antactica. Maybe put your name in a stronger color box. Best wishes and thanks for being such a crusader for us independent travellers.

Posted by: Anonymous, 24 February 2011, 18:49 ( 6:49 PM)

I'll add my vote to the effectiveness of the first cover too. It's the way the cover area is divided up, the many lettering styles (demonstrating diversity, rounded & friendly) and the green color that is "ecological" and "bright" as in intelligent & inventive. It's imaginative to have people traveling across a rounded area that is grassy on a bike, because riding a bike is a bit tricky in grass. Almost any image could be where the map is and it would not matter to the success of the rest of the design.
Right now it is many people's dream to become untethered at their work place so they can travel and still make a living so putting techno-stuff in the area with the map might make sense.

A suggestion: your name should take up two lines, and be in the same lettering style as the word "practical." I like it sideways though - that orientation attracts attention and looks like the 'feedback' tab of a web page, so gives a techno-bent to the cover.

Posted by: Franis Engel, 25 February 2011, 00:30 (12:30 AM)

I think a combination of the the "compass" image on the right and the alternative image of a female backpacker overlooking the bay. Those two images seem to complement each other. The bicyclists and grass does not hold together with the outline of Africa. In addition, the color combination is a bit overused presently with the current "green" movement. I agree with several of the comments with regard to your name - the text size of your name should be larger so that your name and the title have equal importance.

Posted by: Jeff Campbell, 26 February 2011, 09:18 ( 9:18 AM)

I think today's use of technology to plan and execute travel is best reflected in the third and forth covers, and my favorite is the third. Personally, I think your avatar/portrait ought to be on there.

Since many of these will be mail-ordered, I wonder if cover design is as important today.

Posted by: Kathy, 26 February 2011, 18:26 ( 6:26 PM)

I like the grass/globe one as well. I also like the one with the woman, but it looks too much like the cover of this women's travel book:

Posted by: Katryn, 26 February 2011, 22:33 (10:33 PM)

I prefer the cover with the woman looking into the sea.

The bicycle cover is the most striking design, but it makes me think the book is mostly about enviro-friendly eco-tourism.

Posted by: Paul Karl Lukacs, 27 February 2011, 06:01 ( 6:01 AM)

I agree that these two are the most promising of the five. I specifically dislike the two with the metal jigsaw ball. The backpacker suggests a more narrow view of travel than you wrote about in the second edition, and I assume this would be the case for the latest edition, as well.

Among these two, I state with confidence that I prefer #2 (with the compass). At first, I leaned toward #1. I like the wireframe globe. Green grass and blue skies are always nice. But the imagery says "Earth-friendly" and "bicycling". Those are good things, but they're not specifically what your book is about, and the "green-ness" is a bit cliche.

#2 provides a somewhat abstract backdrop (I didn't even realize what the compass was at first, though that might be due to me looking at the scaled-down version on the Web page first), causing me to focus on the most important part of the cover -- the words. The title really stands out, and from there, nothing distracts me from reading on to "how to travel around the world." I suspect people who see it will be less likely to be thinking about Earth Day or bicycle travel and more likely to think about what it means to be a practical nomad. The one disadvantage I see is that there is a distance at which I can still read "how to travel around the world" in #1 but not in #2, but that's like 12 to 15 feet away when I scale the PDF up to real-life size (it's significantly more readable like that than in this small image you posted), and I think it's outweighed by the advantages. #2 feels kind of technical, and I like that. I think it's a great option.

Posted by: Phil Mocek, 1 March 2011, 22:21 (10:21 PM)
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