I’m in the red pen stage, and will soon be in the beta stage, after which I’ll need a damn good query letter, to make sure agents want to see my manuscript. I will love and adore you all if you give me some feedback on the blurb I’m putting together for My Lady Untamed.
Any reactions you have are great: did you want to read the story? Was any of it confusing? Was there too little of my heroine in it? (Actually I can probably answer that now with a yes. This is a very hero-centric blurb!)
As it stands:
The Duke of Darlington is playing a dangerous political game in league with Liverpool. When he trades his own reputation to further the game, it’s critical that he doesn’t lose focus. Only he’s been having trouble breathing of late, and he fears he’s become a danger to himself.
For distraction he spies on his lover’s sister – the rough-mannered girl from the country who thinks she can warn a duke away. What he doesn’t expect is a girl who sees him clearly, and says awful, true things to his face. He follows her back to the country, determined to be cured by the sharp edge of her tongue.
Too late he realises his mistake: in the country he’s no longer in his world – he’s in hers. He hasn’t reckoned on having to face the darkness in himself before he can banish it. Or of meeting the one girl who’s strong enough to take him on.
The place-holder blurb I have here (copied below) showcases very different elements of the story. It’s not in the structure of a blurb, but are there any elements from it that you would like to see brought into the blurb?
Roscoe is a brilliant, troubled duke who follows Bea to the countryside dressed as a woman. He’s very particular about his wardrobe and his pet pig. Bea has agreed to help him sort himself out if he’ll stay away from her sister.
He’s extreme. She’s strong enough to take anything he can throw at her. Love ensues.
I know that I will sound stupid but my first thought was “Rugby” though I knew what the actual context of the word league was. It sounds like an interesting book. And I especially like that the setting creates his weakness (romance so often is only about the characters interactions and not the characters interacting with each other and their space). i did notice that there is no appearance of a pig or cross-dressing in the top blurb
Vassiliki said pretty much what I was going to! By ‘Liverpool’ do you mean the place or ‘Lord Liverpool’ or something? because adding a title in (if its a person) could help mitigate the flash-misinterperatation of ‘league…’ 😉
bahaha – playing rugby for Liverpool – that’s awesome. And totally not what I meant 🙂 Great feedback.
@Vassiliki – do you think the top blurb would be better with the pig and cross-dressing in it?
I think I would read it! And yes, something about the cross dressing and pig would add a bit more of a fun playful element.
Some quick thoughts (email me if you want to discuss — it’s a bit difficult via comments)…
Generally, I like it. The cross-dressing and the pig would definitely catch my attention. BUT I might make assumptions about the tone of the book.
Paragraph 1 is good, but as other comments have mentioned, it includes information that relies on context and can trip a reader up. I’d merge the last 2 sentences.
Paragraph 2 has the details that intrigue me, particularly the heroine being his lover’s sister. I’d reword the sentences, though. They imply stuff about the story but don’t work enough for your blurb. I think you have what you need to say there — you just need to adjust it so every word counts.
Paragraph 3 is great. It has a certain momentum that urges me to read the book. I’d slightly modify the second sentence to be shorter, punchier, easier to read and understand.
I notice you don’t put the h/h’s names in the blurb. Was that deliberate? Because sometimes I like to refer to it, especially in the beginning when I’m reading a book and need to figure out who I’m barracking for. Hehe.
All that said…you must never let a reader dictate how you should write. 😀
this is such useful feedback – thank you! And it’s super important to know who to barrack for, because the book opens in an alpha’s POV, who perceives my hero as a piece of fluff 🙂
Wow, very impressive Kat! What Kat said!
I know! talk about useful feedback, right? She has an excellent review blog – I think if you click on her name it’ll take you there.
Heh, after Kat’s comment you probably don’t need any others, but I put in my tuppence worth anyway.
Paragraph Two is the transition from Paragraph One to Paragraph Three, right? That means a transition from a primarily external conflict to a primarily internal conflict. I think you might be cutting the transition too short, at the moment. Because right now Paragraph Two is also centered more on the internal conflict than on the external one.
Which, I guess, is representative of the focus in the book. So in itself it isn’t a problem, but because of Paragraph One I was expecting a different pacing of the sentences and the theme, and that threw me a little. If you could make the transition somehow smoother that might help.
It also feels a little as if Paragraph One and Three are more explanation than actual story line, wherease Two starts ‘telling the story’ of some sort.
For that reason I like One and Three better, because while they give me information they leave open what results from it. Ahhhhhhh, I don’t know how to put it! Two is a bit too ‘spoilery’ for my liking?
The last thing I can tell you about P2 is that only “says awful, true things” really stands out in my mind. Which probably links back to Kat’s advice to “make every word count”.
Well, since English isn’t my first language this might all be nonsense. I very much suspect that I read this blurb slightly different from native speakers.
Otherwise I like your blurb.
excellent feedback – thank you! Kat mentioned to me on twitter that it read a bit like a synopsis, which I think is what you’re picking up in paragraph 2. I have so much to work with – and the difficulty of the blurb is to get it all into as small a space as possible! Here goes round 2…
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