Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Most Difficult Thing To Write…

Hello again, everybody!

Well, in my last post, I talked about a new project I wanted to start and how I was going to chronicle all of the different steps I take to create a novel.  However, I’m going to have to put that endeavor on hold for a bit while I get my second book, Betrayal in the Highlands, ready for publication hopefully later next month (but probably in September, we’ll see.)

Anyway, Betrayal in the Highlands is currently being edited by the wonderful Kimberly Grenfell.  Seriously, if you ever need an incredibly talented editor to not only go line-by-line over your entire manuscript, but also provide insightful feedback regarding your manuscript’s plots, characters, and so forth—you can’t go wrong with Kimberly. You can find her website.  You’ll be glad that you hired her!

So while Kimberly is smoothing out my many typos and writing gaffs, I have to face the worst part of writing a novel.  I have to write the promotional blurb.

If you don’t know what a promotional blurb is, think of the trail for a movie. You know, the brief commercials about a film where a guy with a deep voice says something like:


“In a world where all hell has broken lose, one man stands between salvation and utter ruin…a fat stuttering librarian named Edmund….”

Promotional blurbs are a book’s commercial.  They usually appear on the back cover and advertisements.

Along with the book’s cover, the promotional blurb SELLS the book. 

Whenever somebody puts Riddle in Stone on their “to read” list on Goodreads.com, I try to send them a quick e-mail thanking them and asking how the learned of my book.  Ninety percent of the time, people will say something like: “Oh, I was looking for a good fantasy to read, read the description of your book, and thought it sounded interesting.”

So the blurb is really, REALLY important.  Good blurbs can sell bad books.  Good books have difficulty overcoming bad blurbs. 

I NEED TO WRITE A TERRIFIC BLURB FOR BETRAYAL!!!!

The problem is—I suck at it. 

If you haven’t written a promotional blurb before, picture summarizing you entire novel and all its many plots and twists and characters into a single paragraph.  Honestly, it is the hardest piece of writing I’ve ever had to do.  Harder than the book itself. Harder than even my dissertation.

So, dear reader, I could use your help and I could use it really quickly (I need the blurb within a week or so). 

Below are some rough drafts of blurbs.  Please help me polish them (or help me write something completely different).  Again, the idea is to create something that sounds so good you’ll want to go out and read it!  Any and all help will be gratefully appreciated!! 

There are a few key things that I think need to be in the blurb: 

1.      Edmund knows a secret that is potentially dangerous for all of humanity.

2.      Goblins will go to any lengths to capture him. 

3.      Just when he thinks he’s safe, he realizes that the woman he’s loved since childhood is telling stories about him, stories that will make things much worse for Edmund and his friends if anybody starts to believe them.

4.      Edmund has to risk getting captured by goblins in order to get to Molly.

5.      Molly has already promised not to tell people about Edmund, but she’s doing so anyway.


So here are a couple rough versions that I have so far…

Version 1:

Pursued relentlessly by evil goblins for the ancient secret he knows, Edmund believes that he has finally found safety in the inviting confines of a sleepy coastal town far from the frozen mountains of the Undead King.  Then he learns that the woman he has loved since childhood is telling stories about him—stories that, if people start to believe them, will have every bandit, cut-throat, and aspiring king out to kill him and his friends. Edmund has to evade his goblin pursuers, get back to his hometown of Rood, and stop the stories from spreading.  But how can he convince his former love to stop talking when she’s already promised not to reveal his secret?


Version 2:

Edmund knows a secret—an ancient secret that, if in the wrong hands, could destroy all of humanity. Pursued relentlessly by sadistic goblins, Edmund hides in the inviting confines of a sleepy coastal town far from the frozen mountains of the Undead King.  For a moment, he believes he’s safe.  Then he learns that his former childhood love, Molly, is telling stories about him—stories that will get Edmund and his friends killed. Edmund has to abandon his sanctuary, avoid being captured by goblin hunters, and race back to his hometown to convince Molly to stop talking about him. But how can he get her to stop talking when she’s already promised not to reveal his secret?


NEW Version 3:


Hunted relentlessly by sadistic goblins, Edmund believes that he has finally found safety in the inviting confines of a sleepy coastal town far from the frozen mountains of the Undead King.  Then he learns that Molly, the woman he has loved since childhood, is telling stories about him—stories that will surely get him and his friends killed. Edmund has to evade his goblin pursuers, get back to his hometown of Rood, and stop the stories from spreading.  But how can he convince his former love to stop talking when she’s already promised not to reveal his secret?


**One of the problems with this these is that I use the word “secret” twice and I can’t figure out a good way of altering it while keeping the context.



Thoughts?



Here are some more drafts:


Edmund believes that he has finally found safety as far from the frozen mountains of the Undead King as possible.  Then he learns that Molly, the woman he has loved since childhood, is telling stories about him—stories that will get him and his friends killed. Edmund has to get back to his hometown of Rood and stop the stories from spreading.  However, if the goblins catch him, all of humanity is doomed.


Edmund knows a secret—an ancient secret that, if in the wrong hands, could destroy all of humanity. Pursued relentlessly by sadistic goblins, he hides in a sleepy coastal town as far from the frozen mountains of the Undead King as possible.  For a moment, Edmund believes he’s finally safe.  Then he learns that Molly, a woman he’s loved since childhood, is telling stories about him—stories that will get him and his friends killed. Edmund has to abandon his sanctuary, avoid being captured by goblin hunters, race back to his hometown, and convince Molly to stop talking about him. If he fails, all will be lost.




Edmund’s old, boring life is gone forever. Pursued relentless by sadistic goblins, he hides in a sleepy coastal town as far from the frozen mountains of the Undead King as possible. However, this quiet respite will not last, as he learns that his childhood love, Molly, is revealing information about him—information that will get him and his friends killed. Edmund is forced to embark on a perilous journey home to confront the woman who broke his heart. If he fails, all of humanity will be doomed.

6 comments:

  1. He knows what this secret is. She knows what it too. Even the fucking goblins apparently know! Why shouldn't your readers?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They have to pay $2.99 to find out! :)

      Delete
  2. I can't give any advice, but I'll wish you good luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks K.E.!! I need all the luck I can get!

      Delete
  3. Bitch. He needs to make a glass eye, change his name and if he heads north again its to kill that troll and steal his super ancient book of secret magics so he can start trying to translate it on his own. 'If' he ever heads back to see Molly. I'd make it a point to take back my books and if the dogs of war are too hot on my heels put the books in a cart and burn it right outside of town.

    That woman took the inheritance of a man she knew loved her. Didn't offer to return his goods. And is married to a man who got him out of the way so he could marry his sweet heart after she got all his wealth. Then lied to our guy by not telling him that everything he was risking by going back up against the Undead King was already ashes. Another lie. Oh its not a lie if they are either rival enemies or hostile neutrals but for a friend? Twist the knife harder if you can I dare you!

    I'd rather take off over sea than return to speak with people who betrayed me on many deep and personal levels. And if I had to return because they broke faith with me, I'll take it all back.



    the Deposed King

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL!! Thanks Joshua! Don't worry. Although Edmund certainly got screwed over in the first book, the second book begins his turn around. In it, he stops running and begins to fight back.

      Delete