Using Calibre: adding a cover


I got an interesting question recently on how I add covers to the ARC’s I get that come without a cover and today I’ll tell you how I add them.

First of all, my library on my computer is organized with a FREE program called Calibre.


Once you’ve downloaded this program you can add your books with a drag and drop or you can add multiple books from a directory by clicking on the first icon, Add Books. You can organize your books any way you want, you can add tags that you define, add a rating, or just look at them by date like I do.


You can see what it looks like in your directory on your computer here. It’s a special folder with all the authors listed alphabetically, which looks nice right?


Now back to the Calibre screen: if you go into EDIT METADATA (second icon of the left) of The Breakdown and choose Edit Metadata Individually (you can also Edit in Bulk) then you get the next screen:


If you then choose DOWNLOAD METADATA, the system first looks for a book description on Google and Amazon and then for a cover. If you can’t find a cover you like or it doesn’t generate one, you can also just save one you have found on your computer and choose Browse and then select that cover where you saved it on your computer.


I also use the CONVERTย button A LOT. I always ask for an epub but I often get a mobi or pdf format of an e-book and I use Calibre to convert it to epub which is the format used on my e-reader.

You can also insert the metadata (the blurb of the book so to speak) as the first page behind the cover page. I try to do this when I think of it because then I at least know what the book is about when I start reading it.

So when all that’s done, all you have to do is send the book to your device. I use a usb cable between my computer and my device and click ‘connect’ on my device which pops up automatically. There’s a column that appears before the title one where you can see everything you’ve already downloaded. All that’s left to do is right click and a little menu pops up that says send to Device and then you can still choose to the Main Memory or a storage card.


Well that’s it, I hope it’s clear and it was helpful to someone. I don’t really use all of the functionalities on Calibre so I’m really no expert but I’m happy to share the little knowledge I do have.

30 thoughts on “Using Calibre: adding a cover

  1. That program sounds way better than the one I’m using since it’s free and allows peeps to generate covers. I use Book Collectorz, which is also good for keeping track of books but you have to pay for it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tbh, this is like written in Slovenian for me, bc I am such a dummie when it comes to all things computer whise (trust me, I have no idea how I managed to design my blog the way it looks now on my own, I guess that was power of willness).
    I don’t have problem with having kindle covers from Netgalley, not original ones, but I know peple will appreciate your effort to explain people how they can change them, so I’ll spread the word about your post. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trust me when I say that I’m not a whizz either in those things and I couldn’t possibly design a blog looking like yours, so if I can manage I’m sure everybody can. There’s nothing to the program really, just installing and then drag and drop the book you’ve got and you create a library folder on the computer like that. I often miss covers on Netgalley but they are epub or pdf’s, I don’t have a Kindle.. Thank you for spreading the word. Much appreciated!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. How did I not know about this? Asks the girl who is only starting to use spreadsheet to keep track of her readings ๐Ÿ™‚ This sounds awesome, I need to try it, thanks!


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