I don’t know about you, but occasionally I find this one of the hardest things to do. Imagine – you’ve spent the last few months or perhaps a year writing that new novel and you’ve finally written, ‘the end.’ But is it?
Hardly. Before you can publish that book one of the most important things you have to consider is how to compose good copy for that essential blurb which goes on the back of a paperback or the inside flap of a hardcover book.
This blurb is a teaser for the whole plot and essence of your novel. Writing this blurb is no easy exercise because there is skill in how much plot you give the reader at the same time as ensuring they buy the book.
Looking at the majority of fiction blurbs you will find they are round about 150 words or so long.
What do I do?
They say copying is the highest form of flattery, and although I don’t advocate you find the top seller of the day and copy their blurb word for word, I do recommend you sit down and study what some of your favourite authors have written. I first look at the length of the blurb and then study the flow of the piece. Voice and style is important and because I’ve read the book beforehand I know how it compares with the actual story.
Have you received any reviews from magazines or newspapers?
Occasionally you may be fortunate to have your novel/manuscript reviewed by a major publication before the book has actually been released to the public. The blurb is the perfect place to mention this. If your book has been well-received then you’d be silly not to say so from the beginning and this can be a definite unique selling point (USP).
Make sure your blurb is the right length
We’ve all been told from time to time that less is best, and this is a perfect time to use that adage. Your blurb is a short teaser for your novel. No one wants to read a six-page synopsis, but you have to learn how to do this. The best way I’ve found is to write a long blurb, and then to edit this by cutting out superfluous words. Remember how your prune your roses in the autumn? Think the same. Your blurb must be as concise as possible. Also ensure you write with an active voice.
Can you start with a Question?
This has been a favourite way to begin a blurb for some time now. It’s been shown that many readers are fascinated to read a fiction blurb which places them inside the story. It doesn’t matter how you do it; either by placing a question which leads into the plot, or the whole of the blurb may be one long question. It’s fun too.
What should I mention in the blurb?
How often does the blurb not cover the whole story? I would say unless the novel is very short or boring then this is the usual case. Your novel usually goes far beyond the scope of the blurb. Use your first exciting adventure as the start to your blurb. Your readers can only be thrilled when they discover that your blurb is only the beginning of a wonderful adventure.
Finally, I should say that writing a fiction novel blurb doesn’t have to be difficult, but it is important and should be taken seriously. After all, this is your readers' first look at your novel and it should entice the reader to buy it!
Thanks for stopping by.
Happy reading everyone!
How will Englishman Richard Barker come to terms with his grief after suffering a devastating loss? Will either of the two beautiful women in his life, quiet and smouldering American, Sorrel or the tempestuous and wilful, Miranda be the catalyst towards inner peace and perhaps love?
While Richard is battling with his bitter despair, he enters into the dark, often surreal world of his dead father's past life during the Second World War. It is Sorrel's Grandfather, an American Air Force pilot, who contacts Richard with some intriguing news which helps Richard to his senses.
Richard lives in a world that is sometimes as tragic as ‘A Farewell to Arms’ and as sensuous as ‘The English Patient’. His story and that of his father are crafted from the ruins of war and the indestructibility of love. The action is non-stop, the locations are intriguing and the characters are appealing. There is tension, romance and harrowing escapes all woven within a story that captures the imagination and keeps the reader guessing until the very end.
Why does suspense seem to find Diana Rivers when she least expects it?
An invitation to take part in a film-shoot seemed too exciting an opportunity to miss. Life had been quiet for the last year or so & Diana looked forward to renewing old friendships and meeting a handful of well-known film stars.
The only possible fly in the ointment was the venue. Years before, Diana had suffered a terrifying experience in England - an encounter which she thought she'd resolved. Reassuring her partner, Steve that all was well & that terrifying episode was behind them, she went ahead & confirmed their acceptance.
Little did she know that the filming was only a minor part of the show about to be enacted.
Once again, Diana is drawn into events which threaten to spiral out of control. When a beautiful young actress is accidentally killed, Diana's reaction is to consider sinister thoughts. Was it an accident or ...MURDER?
A second body leaves everyone reeling & this time there is no doubt. A callous & vicious murderer or murderers are at large. Diana is fast embroiled in discovering the hard facts, not knowing that she is placing herself in great danger. Watch out Diana! You could be next...
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