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Writing your blurb

Simple rules to follow when writing your book description.

Ash Davies avatar
Written by Ash Davies
Updated over a week ago

A blurb is your book's sales pitch. It helps you market your book to its intended audience. While your title and front cover draw your target reader in, it’s your blurb that convinces them to buy. Here are three rules to follow and practice:

1. Give the details

Blurbs say what your book is, and what it’s about. When writing yours, remember only key information matters – avoid writing a summary, or giving too much away.

  • Introduce your main characters.

  • Mention the genre and themes found in your book.

  • For nonfiction, clarify the topic and be clear and factual about what your book contains.

2. Appeal to your audience

A blurb should attract readers. Remember — this is your pitch. Be assertive.

  • Open with a strong statement. Describe the key tensions in your book, and what is at stake. Give the reading experience your reader can expect.

  • Avoid hyperbole and self-praise. It can turn readers off.

  • For nonfiction, be clear why your topic is useful or important. Finish with what the reader can expect to gain by reading your book.

3. Keep it short

Aim for 150-200 words.

  • Use more verbs than adjectives. Verbs make sentences shorter.

  • Try punctuating your sentences differently. Semicolons, colons or dashes can replace words, improve the pace of writing and add drama.

  • For nonfiction, consider using bullets and numbered lists. These reduce word counts, and aid skimming.

Blurb questions

Blurb vs. bookstore description

A blurb is a short description that is found on the back of your book. A bookstore description is found on your online book page, such as your Amazon page.

Blurb vs. synopsis

A blurb is written for marketing purposes. A synopsis is for agents and publishers.

A blurb should sum up the story without giving too much away. A synopsis is a full outline, including any spoilers.

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