The latest version of that blasted book blurb!

Again, thank you so much to everyone who commented on previous versions of my blurb. You’ve helped me focus on The Big Smoke‘s key selling points and ‘hook’.

I’m quite happy with my latest attempt, but I’m keen to hear what you think. Here it is!

Revised blurb

Ceara’s desperate for love; Seb’s desperate to get laid. Ceara adores reading novels; Seb hasn’t finished a book in years. Two strangers, both moving to the same Brisbane suburb for uni. As they prepare to attend the same university, their paths seem destined to cross. But they keep missing each other. Maybe fate is keeping them apart, or maybe it’s just chance.

When university starts, things get complicated. Both their best friends start acting weird, and the relentless demands of uni make their stress levels soar. Before their first semester is over, both Seb and Ceara will be forced to question who they are and what they want from their lives. Will they have the courage to find the answers, or will they crumble under the pressure? And will they finally meet, or remain strangers forever?

Your turn

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts! I promise I’ll stop bugging you about this very soon… maybe. 😉

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12 Comments

Filed under Self publishing, The Big Smoke

12 responses to “The latest version of that blasted book blurb!

  1. Yo Cally! How have you been?

    Looks pretty cool to me. I haven’t read your earlier blurbs, but one suggestion I do have for this one, is to use a few different words other than university and uni. Possibly, school or campus, or something along those lines – could help keep it interesting?

    Pretty simple suggestion, I have no idea if it is of any use to you haha.

    Anyway, hope all is well! Looking forward to your book!

  2. Sounds good!

    Perhaps it’s just me, but a comma doesn’t feel quite right in the first two sentences, since each of those phrases could stand alone. What do you think about semi-colons? Ceara’s desperate for love; Seb’s desperate to get laid. Ceara adores reading novels; Seb hasn’t finished a book in years. The only other thing is that in the following sentence, Both their best friends start acting weird and the relentless demands of uni make their stress levels soar. the second ‘their’ is a little ambiguous. Not sure how you’d change that though! Also, if we’re being really technical, there should be a comma after the “and” in the middle of that sentence 🙂

    But I think you’ve done a good job 🙂

    • I agree. Funnily enough, the commas started as semi colons but I convinced myself they were too formal. I’ve changed them back, and I’ve added in the comma too. Thanks for your thoughts.

  3. I like that the beginning is much more hook-y. Nice work!

  4. Hi Cally! It’s definitely intriguing… I love how it starts out! My only question is what makes them destined to meet? Maybe a hint? Otherwise it sounds like 2 separate stories that dont intertwine til the end. Maybe that’s what it is? Anyway, I’d totally read this! 🙂

  5. Cally, I think you nailed it. This latest blurb has a flavor that flows extremely well. I love it.

  6. Sounds good Cally, but I do recall hearing that agents aren’t fans of ‘questions’ being in queries. Though if this is a blurb & not a query, I guess it doesn’t matter 🙂

  7. I like the feel of this one much more, Cally, but (I’m sorry!) there are still a couple things that are sticking for me.
    1. You describe Ceara and Seb as total opposites but then say their paths seem destined to cross. The way they are described, it seems much more likely that they’re paths aren’t destined to cross – why would they? That could be a great hook – what brings these two who are so different together? But as it stands now, I’m not convinced that they’d ever have reason or need to meet.
    2. “Both their friends start acting weird” is a bit of a weak phrase. Weird is one of those words like “nice” – it doesn’t really tell you much. And since the focus should be on Ceara and Seb, I’d rather hear how they’re affected – maybe more along the lines of what you had before – when Ceara’s best friend withdraws from her she feels isolated in this strange new world. The novel freedom of uni turns Seb best friend into a partying womanizer (again, I think you could be more descriptive or specific than “wanker”) that Seb doesn’t want to hang out with. When (something that happens in your story) throws these two very different people together they are surprised to find they have a lot to offer each other…. Obviously I’m just making stuff up, but does the idea make any sense?

  8. I’ve read the other versions and I love how you’ve tightened this. Here are a few suggestions:

    Paragraph 1. I’d combine these two sentences because you have lots of short sentences right now. “As they prepare to attend the same university, their paths seem destined to cross. But they keep missing each other.”

    Also, you used the word “same” in the sentence right before. You could probably drop the second one.

    Paragraph 2. I completely agree with Susanna above. “Acting weird” doesn’t tell me anything and you should keep the focus on how it affects your two main characters.

    I’m wondering about ending with two questions. Is there a way to turn them into statements?

  9. Robyn Martin

    I like this blasted blurb version much better than the previous ones. This one is closer to the content of the book and has the hook. Just a few suggestions, and other people have made them before me so I’m adding the weight here. Same suburb, same uni, the word same appears in two sentences. Try reworking it so that it either happens in the same sentence (there’s that word again) or drop one of the ‘sames’. Maybe say that ‘it seems inevitable that their paths would cross’ rather than that they are destined to meet. Suggest starting the second paragraph with ‘When the semester starts’ as you have used the word uni or university several times already. Otherwise, I like this version a lot and I also agree with most of the previous comments. But I will differ with one. Questions are fine in a blurb, they make the reader want to know more and are often used as a hook.

  10. Susie New

    I agree with most of the previous comments here, but I think the first statements about Ceara and Seb are kind of simplistic and grate me a little.. There is more to Seb than wanting to get laid isn’t there? what you say about the characters will shape how the reader starts the story. It seems like the target demo for this novel will be young women, do you want them to start off with the impression that Seb is desperate to get laid?
    Maybe you could start with a couple of relevant quotes from the two main characters, then say,
    “As two university noobs freshly landed in the big city, Ceara the romantic and pragmatic Seb have markedly different philosophies on life and love.” then go on about their paths being destined to cross, the situations they are in, etc. I don’t think Ceara and Seb are really opposites from what you say, their differences just sound like the general differences between men and women. IMO. Ha.
    …Having said all that, after working in bookstores for all those years I know that a blurb doesn’t necessarily have to have one iota to do with the plot, it’s just about getting the customer from the shelf to the counter with the copy in their hot little hands. And how you do that is to make it sound light and entertaining, and put a nice bright colour on the cover (hot pink or yellow). Haha.

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