Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Problems with the Back Cover

I know I am not alone when I say writing the summary of a book for the back cover is just about the hardest thing you can do.  I've heard experienced editors complain about it.  Now as many of you know, I am preparing Bait: An Order of the Spirit Realm Novel for publication on June 1rst.  It is going through a final edit as we speak, so I am working on the back cover.  The problem is this story is so full and complicated, I have no idea what to say about it.  I want to draw the reader in without spoiling any of the plot twists.

Here is one example:  This is one thing I could start with.

When a reaper steps out of Bay-Lee's closet to issue a warning--It kills on your birthday--she realizes her life is about to change and not for the better. 

Another example:  Or I could start with this.

At Sixteen, Bay-Lee doesn't raise her hand in class, and she purposely puts down the wrong answers on tests, just enough to keep to a steady C average.  Most kids don't notice her.  They would be surprised to learn she's living under an alias, relocating at her uncle's whim, and hiding from monsters because she's Van Helsing's daughter.  For years she's dreamed of joining him at his school for hunters.  The only thing on her mind is revenge.  Then she meets Nick Gallos, an angry boy with a dark past and a bleak future.  Falling in love is not an option, but try telling that to her heart.

Another example:  Or we can start out this way.

If you don't believe monsters in the closet are real, ask Bay-Lee about her late night visitor.

What do YOU think?

How should I start?

What grabs your attention, and what leaves you cold?

3 comments:

Rita Webb said...

For the back cover, I like the one that starts, "At Sixteen, Bay-Lee doesn't raise her hand in class..."

For the front cover, I like this one, "If you don't believe monsters in the closet are real, ask Bay-Lee about her late night visitor."

EXCEPT it is TOO LONG for a front cover blurb, so you could possibly just use the first phrase,

"If you don't believe the monsters in your closet are real..."

If you don't want a hanging sentence like that, you could do, "The monsters in your closet are real."

Carrie Fort said...

I agree with Rita about, well ALL OF WHAT SHE SAID. I like the second one better!!

Stephanie B said...

I like the following best.

"When a reaper steps out of Bay-Lee's closet to issue a warning--It kills on your birthday--she realizes her life is about to change and not for the better."

But I think you can for go "It kills on your birthday." Either that or I would reword it. I don't think you really need that detail though.

I feel like the second one is too long. I know the synopsis on the back of a cover to get straight to the point without telling me a lot or too little.