But the thing about doing that for which you have no natural talent is, you have to learn. So I've been scarfing down posts from Madgeniusclub with helpful suggestions for blurb writing.
This is probably the single most useful article I've read. Dorothy Grant shares the process by which she and her husband work from a long blurb with too much information down to a short, punchy blurb with a good hook.
Sarah Hoyt shares a collection of blurbs for the Cinderella story, aimed at different genres.
Rowena Daniells discusses the agony of trying to fit a 100,000 word book into the Procrustean back-cover bed of 150 words or less.
Think getting down to 150 words is hard? Dorothy Grant challenges you to get it down to 50 words. And if you say "That's impossible," well, she has lots of examples.
I'm not at Dorothy's level of expertise yet, but at least I've got the blurbs for both books well under 150 words.
For generations Harmony’s totalitarian government has used the bleak continent of Esilia as a dumping ground for political dissidents. Now they’re surprised that the dissidents want to secede.
Gavrel is totally devoted to his colony’s battle for freedom. Isvel, daughter of the enemy’s invading general, knows exactly why Harmony should rule. When she is taken hostage by his guerrilla group, he has to draw a line between his personal inclinations and his duty to the insurgency, while Isvel has to remember her duty to escape. There can be no future for two people on opposing sides of this war – so Gavrel will just have to win the war.
Orphaned and taunted as an Unlicensed child, Devra grew up determined to expiate her parents’ crime by being the perfect citizen – which means never, ever questioning or defying the rules of Harmony’s totalitarian government. But when one of her students is threatened with “medical rehabilitation,” she finds that her personal values are incompatible with good citizenship. One instinctive act of defiance sends her on a downward spiral towards homelessness and unemployment. But at the very bottom, sometimes you meet someone who shows you a new way up….
What do you think? They're terrible blurbs, aren't they? I know they're terrible. But you should have seen the first drafts!