Apparently a wholesaler is selling ereaders for £ 30 in the UK.
<5% of YAs are digital sales. (When this changes, yippee!)
I read a blog post on Writer's Digest about effective covers. Most of it I have said to you already--readable, big title, think in terms of thumbnail-- except they basically said don't do it yourself.
I also read a blog post which said traditional publishing is like Marxism. Bleed the proles dry.
These last two paragraphs are linked by the confidence those in traditional publishing have that you cannot do your book better than they can. Joe Konrath said a short while back that no one in the real world works on a royalty basis like publishing (or entertainment). You give them your book. They edit it once, they make a cover once, they do the publicity once, and in perpetuity for all known and unknown reaches of the galaxy they are entitled to more profit than you receive. Everything is weighted in their favor, it is in their best interests to assure you that you are dope without them, you need them and you're not "certified" until you are published by them.
Off-Topic slightly--Introduce yourself to the great American writer, Walker Percy. He was a physician from Louisiana and so marvelously a clear thinker that you will do yourself a favor to read his work. That's where "certified" comes from.
Yes, I understand, easy for me to say. I've been certified. But it's still illusory. Be certified in a new way this century by creating your own lovely, intelligent digital book and finding your audience.
And while you're introducing yourself to marvelous writers, read Laurie Colwin. You can learn more about writing from her than anything I can think of. What do these two have in common? Clean, crisp writing, sleek, pointed, aerodynamic. They're both compassionate observers with an intense understanding of human behavior.
I'll end by saying Not Low Maintenance is (for me) skyrocketing in sales at Amazon this month. It's #40 in it's category. Even if its review says it's too much about food for people on a diet.