Book description basics

From Rick:

For the next several months at least, I’m going to be busy catching up on various projects, working on some overdue promised blog posts, and updating my website. I’m also looking for a newer theme for this blog since this one (which I still like very much) doesn’t support the latest database and WordPress features.

Therefore, in order to accomplish these goals, I’m only going to do a major post every other week, starting with the one next week, April 23.

However, I am planning to fill in the alternate weeks with a short post and links to relevant topics.

For this week, I found a superb article on how to do book descriptions and synopses. Even better, this article contains links to other excellent articles on the topic, and the combination forms a tutorial better than any I could write (because book descriptions are not my strong point).

Book descriptions are perhaps the most dreaded thing a writer has to contend with. After all, how do you compress several hundred pages of novel into a couple hundred words that will pull in a potential buyer?

In the past your publisher crafted the book description, but as a self-publisher, you must do your own. With so much competition out there today, your synopsis must be spot on and brilliant to accompany your hopefully equally brilliant cover. Otherwise, you will doom your book sales out of the starting gate.

I’ve read a lot of articles on this topic over the years. Unfortunately, too many of them are limited to a specific genre (or in some cases focus one author’s struggle with a particular book). This article covers a broad base of book types.

Even though this one is aimed at fiction books, the principles are broad enough to be useful for any book. For nonfiction, instead of talking about the character(s) and conflict, you would talk about the relevance of your book to the reader or reader’s needs.

Read this and the linked articles in it, and I believe that it will take much of the pain out of a difficult task. It will help craft a winning book description to get your book get noticed and will hopefully boost your sales.



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