Book Description Basics

book descriptionThe number one problem we run into during the vetting process here at Indies Unlimited is a book’s description, also sometimes known as the book sales pitch or the book blurb. Too long, too short, too detailed, too vague, too too too, blah blah blah. What it comes down to is: many authors cannot write a book description on their own.

There’s nothing wrong with this. In most instances, it takes an outsider to point out what’s missing from (or not needed in) a book description. After all, an author has been married to the book for years. An author is most likely going to overlook points that a potential reader needs to know. It’s like explaining how to use a computer program that you know like the back of your hand. You’ll always skip over the basics or the foundation and get right to the good stuff. Meanwhile, your pupil is sitting there with a stupid look on his/her face, completely confused.

The basics for writing a good book description don’t change. Who, what, when, where, why, and how, and why do I want to read/buy this book? We’ve had plenty of articles about this already. We have an article that specifically explains how to write a book description. We’ve had a post on the most common book description issues. The Evil Mastermind even felt the need to break down book description epic failures into categories.

I’ve put together a list of the questions I most commonly ask after reading a book description that has confused me to the point of needing Dramamine. Reading these questions won’t replace the lessons in the articles linked to above. But hopefully, they will help prevent you from achieving the Epic Fail categories. Continue reading “Book Description Basics”

Book Description Basics

book descriptionThe number one problem we run into during the vetting process here at Indies Unlimited is a book’s description, also sometimes known as the book sales pitch or the book blurb. Too long, too short, too detailed, too vague, too too too, blah blah blah. What it comes down to is: many authors cannot write a book description on their own.

There’s nothing wrong with this. In most instances, it takes an outsider to point out what’s missing from (or not needed in) a book description. After all, an author has been married to the book for years. An author is most likely going to overlook points that a potential reader needs to know. It’s like explaining how to use a computer program that you know like the back of your hand. You’ll always skip over the basics or the foundation and get right to the good stuff. Meanwhile, your pupil is sitting there with a stupid look on his/her face, completely confused.

The basics for writing a good book description don’t change. Who, what, when, where, why, and how, and why do I want to read/buy this book? We’ve had plenty of articles about this already. We have an article that specifically explains how to write a book description. We’ve had a post on the most common book description issues. The Evil Mastermind even felt the need to break down book description epic failures into categories.

I’ve put together a list of the questions I most commonly ask after reading a book description that has confused me to the point of needing Dramamine. Reading these questions won’t replace the lessons in the articles linked to above. But hopefully, they will help prevent you from achieving the Epic Fail categories. Continue reading “Book Description Basics”

Amazon.com Book Descriptions

Judge and Author K.S. BrooksMy oh my. I’ve been banging my head against the wall quite a lot lately. I’ve found so many book descriptions on Amazon.com that are not doing justice to the authors’ books. Twenty words or less? More about the motivation to write it than about the story? Nothing more than a few reviews? An entire paragraph telling me how awesome the author is at flossing his/her teeth? Listen, there’s a right place for everything. And the right place for the book description…is the book description. Potential customers want to know what the book is ABOUT, otherwise, how will they be able to tell if they want to read it? (If you need help writing your book’s description, try this tutorial here.)

For authors who self-published their book, they can go into Createspace or Kindle and easily change the book’s description. But, once the print and Kindle versions are merged, this may not reflect the description they’d prefer. Also, if you aren’t the publisher of your book, and your requested changes have not been made, there is an alternative for you: your Amazon Author Central Page. Continue reading “Amazon.com Book Descriptions”

The Blurb Doctor Is In

The Doctor Is In.
Don’t worry, this won’t hurt a bit.

In my last post, I grumbled about mistakes commonly made in book descriptions/synopses. If you missed that phenomenal piece of curmudgeonly brilliance, you can read it here. This week, I pony up and come through as promised – the Blurb Doctor is in. Trust me, this is going to hurt me a lot more than it hurts you.

Writing a book description or “book blurb” can be the most difficult part of the process for some authors. I don’t know why I have a knack for it. I also don’t know how some people have figured that out (before I came out of the closet with it just now) and have approached me to help them with theirs.

If you’re just getting started, you should check out our Book Description Basics article.

I tried to devise a formula that could be used by anyone for any book of any subject. Would you like to know how that went? Well, it looked something like this:  Continue reading “The Blurb Doctor Is In”