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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Blurbs or Blubs?

I recently asked this question on a writer’s loop and heard many interesting answers but not the specific answers I was hoping for. My question was “When shopping for books, what do you look for in a blurb?” Most of us grab a book based on a familiar name or an eye-catching cover, but ten seconds later we are flipping the book over in our hands, or scrolling downward if we are shopping on-line, to read the Blurb.
This is the crucial make-it or break-it point in the possible sale of the book. Does the blurb tell us what we are hoping to hear? Is this our idea of a good time and worth the money and mental energy to consume this book?
An author is often limited to 180 words or less in a blurb so I would like to ask, “What are you looking for in a blurb?” Content, sub-genre, Assurance of a happy ending, key words or themes such as “Master, kidnapped, bondage or bride?” What words are most compelling in a blurb to assure a reader they are getting the book they want?
I would love to hear your thoughts on this.
XXOO Katalina Leon
Ps Warning brag alert: Night Owl Reviews gave “Owned By Rome” 5 Stars.


Tina Donahue said...

Wow - good question, Kat. I guess I'm looking for some idea of the tone of the story. Whether it will be somewhat witty (which I love) or too serious (which isn't my cup of tea). However, some of the best novels I've read had so-so blurbs on them. You just can't tell a book by it's cover or blurb. :)

Tina Donahue said...

Um, that should have been by its cover (not it's). Been a loooonnngg day. :)

Katalina Leon said...

I know I've read some terrific blurbs that were obviously written by someone in marketing who had not actually read the book. Its quite disappointing when all you like about a book is the blurb. How many times can you re-read the blurb? lol

jean hart stewart said...

Blurbs are important, but I think excerpts give me more of a feel to the story...Maybe this is wishful thinking on my part since I think my excerpts are better than my blurbs. Jean

Katalina Leon said...

Jean, I think you do well with both. The trouble is in a book store or on-line often the first thing a customer is offered is the cover and the blurb. If the cover and the blurb doesn't grab their attention-they'll never move on to the reading the excerpt...

s7anna said...

I like to get a general sense of the story...I don't need to know the ending (that's a buzz kill for me) but since it's a romance I'm happy knowing that it'll have a HEA in the end. I also like to get a bit of an intro to the main characters and the underlying plot.

April Ash said...

Blurbs should give just enough info to entice, but not give away the whole story. Short blurbs are better for me. I also consider the cover. "Hearing" an author talk about a book helps (like at a loop/chat/blog).

Katalina Leon said...

Thank you Ladies for sharing your thoughts on blurbs.

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