Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Words go here.

I hate writing blurbs. 

I've written a lot of them now. Way, way too many. And I hate writing them just as much as I hate writing synopses. Luckily if I avoid writing synopses for long enough, my co-writer does them for me. She's awesome. I must send her more chocolate. 

A few months ago when it seemed like a really fun idea to write a comic crime caper trilogy -- still romance, I'm not looking this gift horse in the mouth yet -- I didn't think about how terrible it would be to have to write three blurbs at once. 

Blurb 1 is kind of done. It's the hard one. It has to set the scene. Who are these characters, and, most importantly, why should the reader care? 

Blurb 2, surprisingly, came together quite easily. 

But Blurb 3... I hate Blurb 3 with an passionate rage that will haunt me to the end of my days. 

Because it's book three. The people who buy it have already read the first two books, right? So why do I have to spell it all out again? Why can't my blurb just be: 

OMG, you guys. All that stuff that happened in the other books, this is where it all ends. The loose ends get tied up. There's a gunfight! A kidnapping! A murder! Not all in that order. And, yes, the characters finally get together! There are also funny bits. If you've stuck with us so far, this one is your pay off! 

I hate blurbs. 

On the plus side, I read the back of books a lot more critically now. I find myself evaluating other people's blurbs. What interests me about it? What do I love, and what do I hate? What makes me make that face? You know, this face: 

I've always believed that just like you shouldn't judge a book by its cover (but I do), you also shouldn't judge a book by its cover matter (but I do). Heaps of writers joke about the blurb being the hardest part of writing the book, and in a crazy way it is. 

That book? Well, that's 80 000 or so words to tell a story. The blurb? That's about two hundred. Condense your story into that, don't give out any spoilers, oh, and make sure you mention the theme, and the tone, and make it exciting enough that someone will want to buy it, but don't go over the top or you'll just end up with an annoyed reader. 

And can we have it by yesterday, please? 


  1. I'd actually like to find that Book 3 blurb. No posing or pandering, just telling it like it is.

    But truth is, I never read blurbs until after I've finished the book. And then think, god, I'm glad I didn't read that before. : p

    1. I like Blurb 3 too, but I don't think the publisher will. They're funny like that.

      I read quite a lot of blurbs, because I still love to walk into a bookshop and pick a few random books (along with the bunch that have actually been recommended to me by friends!) So I often purchase on the strength of the blurb. Sometimes I'm disappointed, and sometimes I'm pleasantly surprised. It's all a lucky dip!



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