…Might This Be the Blurb I’m Looking For?

I… am feeling a bit odd at the moment. I think… I think I might actually have my blurb.

  1. It doesn’t give away any of the major plot points.
  2. It’s the length I was looking for.
  3. It implies some romance, without making it sound like a romance.
  4. It doesn’t sound like a teen’s book.
  5. It sounds like it has some good action in it.

If ya’ll hate it, I think I will cry and publish my book without anything written on the back cover at all. (Honestly, though, point out problems.)

The Yaechahre are a group of humans who give their blood and their obedience to vampires in exchange for safety and security. And for more than two thousand years, it’s been a peaceful occupation.

When Kalyn Reid comes of age and joins the ranks of the Yaechahre, she has no reason to think things will be any different for her. She is paired with Anselm for her Acceptance, and she couldn’t ask for a kinder, more patient mentor. She also couldn’t ask for anyone better-looking.

But before she has a chance to adjust to her new responsibilities—or get a date—her idyllic life goes up in flames in front of her eyes. Without warning, the humans and vampires in her group are murdered by a strange new type of vampire, and the few survivors are forced to scatter.

Anselm and his brother, Micah, vow to hunt down the murderer, and they take Kalyn with them, thinking they have the weapons and skills to keep her safe. But when the killer finds them first, it’s they who must rely on her if any of them are to survive.

Advertisements

6 comments on “…Might This Be the Blurb I’m Looking For?

  1. Love it! Tells you lots about the book without actually giving anything away (or so I assume!)

  2. Wallace says:

    First off, I’m very tempted to wave my hand and say, “This is not the blurb you are looking for”, like I was playing Jedi mind tricks on you. But I’ll refrain from that. Before I do say anything about your blurb, I will mention that the only person who can write a good blurb of your novel is somebody who has read the novel, understands it, knows what is pertinent to the story line, and is a good enough writer to distill that essence into a few dozen words that will catch the attention of a prospective reader.

    Obviously, the only person who can do that is you. No one knows the story better than you and no one can write a better blurb than you. However, from the perspective of a potential reader, I can give you some help as to what I, as a reader, might find good or bad about your blurb.

    The first thing I notice is I hate, well that’s a very strong word but I feel it’s warranted, the use of the word Yaechahre. It’s the second word in the blurb and it immediately throws the reader off. It’s unpronounceable to anyone who hasn’t read your pronunciation guide and the reader is immediately brought to a halt trying to translate gibberish into English. This stops any flow the reader might have in trying to read your blurb and sets up a bad feeling that the book might be filled with other non words. I would strike it from the blurb completely. It does nothing to entice the reader and a lot to put them off the book in the very first sentence. And its use in the second paragraph just confirms its not something you want to use at all in your blurb.

    Your use of Acceptance in capital letters in the second paragraph implies that it is not just normal acceptance as we might use it, but instead is some sort of more formal process that Kalyn must go through to become a full participant in this vampire society. There’s noting intrinsically wrong with that, but you make no other reference to what that formal process might be. It might be better to not capitalize it and just use it in the normal sense we might use it, that of being accepted into a new and different society.

    The use of the phrase “or get a date” sounds very juvenile. If she is being formally accepted into a vampire society, I wouldn’t think she would be the least bit concerned about getting a date, but rather more concerned in fitting in and perhaps later developing a stronger emotional and physical relationship with Anselm. Get a date sounds like what somebody joining a fraternity women’s auxiliary group might say.

    None of this sounds like I’m being very nice to you, but you did ask for opinions about your blurb, and I feel if I’m not completely honest with you I’m doing you no service at all. Of course, these are just my opinions and you can feel free to ignore each and every one of them.

    Now, having said bad things about your blurb, I feel it only fair to write a version of the blurb so you can point out my errors. As I said, the best blurb writer would be you, but I’ll give it a try to show you what I mean.

    “For thousands of years Kalyn Reid’s family had served a race of ancient vampires. The vampires were immortal but their human servants were not, and now it was Kalyn’s turn to serve them.

    “In exchange for their blood and obedience, the vampires protected their humans from the dangers of the world, until now…

    “Before Kalyn’s new mentor Anselm can even begin her training, their group is attacked, Kalyn’s parents are murdered, and the rest of the humans and vampires are killed or dispersed. With no one else, Kalyn turns to Anselm to save her and avenge the death of her parents.

    “When Anselm and his brother Micah set off to find the killer, they take Kalyn along to protect her, but when the killer finds them first, it’s up to Kalyn to save them if any of them are to survive.”

    Well, that’s my attempt at a blurb for you. I don’t know if it’s any better than yours, but it does, in my opinion, read faster and easier than yours. Feel free to use any or all of it or just ignore it altogether.

    • Ms. Nine says:

      I agree. I would omit the second paragraph and change the first sentence in the following paragraph (3rd) by placing the object pronoun after the verb. ..begin training her. 🙂

      • Wallace says:

        It’s a subtle difference, but begin training her implies he will be doing all her training, while begin her training implies he will start her training, but not necessarily do all of it. I prefer the latter since I don’t know how much or from whom all her training will come.

        I admit the second paragraph seemed a little dangly, but I needed a transition from the first to third paragraph to give an idea of why the humans served the vampires, and to give a little dramatise to the blurb.

    • Keri Peardon says:

      Okay, absolute last changes I’m going to make (unless someone sees something wrong with my grammar). This makes blurb #4… and there were 4 query letters before this one. I am all summaried out.

      Since several people were turned off by the word “Yaechahre” on the back, I took that off. I also took out “Acceptance,” since I wasn’t really sure if that was the place to use it (that is the word they use for the ceremony/act of joining the community, but I don’t think that was terribly clear in the original sentence). I did, however, leave in the reference to getting a date, since more people than not wanted a hint of romance, and yes, Kalyn does actually try to wrangle a date out of Anselm. The best she gets, though, is an evening with him and Micah at “Spamalot,” which he declares is definitely not a date.

      It’s not a problem in the story, because we find out very quickly that 1) Kalyn’s lived in this group her entire life. She’s not meeting new people or trying to fit in; she’s just learning how to be a proper blood donor. And 2) she’s had a crush on Anselm for as long as she can remember. I can handle it sounding a little juvenile because Kalyn is a bit juvenile when the story starts. While she’s smarter than most of her peers, and more mature, she’s still a teenage girl with hormones, and she and Anselm actually have to deal with that issue.

      On the actual back cover of my book, the first paragraph is set apart, then the next three paragraphs constitute their own section. Then the quote is a separate section at the bottom. Maximum coverage achieved for the back of the book, so it doesn’t look bare and lonely without publisher’s marks.

      For more than two thousand years, a small community of humans has lived in harmony with vampires, giving their blood and obedience in exchange for protection. And for all that time, it’s been a peaceful occupation.

      When Kalyn Reid comes of age and begins her service, she has no reason to fear. She’s paired with Anselm for her training, and she couldn’t ask for a kinder, more patient mentor. She also couldn’t ask for anyone better-looking.

      But before she has a chance to learn her new responsibilities—or get a date—her idyllic life goes up in flames. Without warning, the humans and vampires in her group are murdered by a strange new type of vampire, and the few survivors are forced to flee.

      Anselm and his brother, Micah, vow to hunt down the murderer, and they take Kalyn with them, thinking they can keep her safe. But when the killer finds them first, it’s they who must rely on her if any of them are to survive.

      “I can see you are afraid,” von Gault said, his accented voice once again soft.“And yet,” he continued, “you aren’t; you still have hope. That makes you more dangerous, because you will try to beat me. But at the same time, it is so much more satisfying to break you.”
      Kalyn’s eyes narrowed. “You can’t break me. You can hurt me. You can probably even make me cry. But you won’t break me.”
      He chuckled. “No, you won’t break easily.
      But everyone has a soft spot. I’ll find yours.”

      • Wallace says:

        I think this is your best blurb yet. It reads fast, has nothing to make the reader stumble and pause, and gives enough information to get the reader interested. I like the addition of the excerpt at the end. It gives enough of a sample of your writing style to make the reader want to turn to the front of the book and read a few pages to get the feel of the book. Once they are reading the book, the writing should speak for itself and get you a sale. Good job!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s