I don’t know about you, but I find writing the Facebook hook and the blurb one of the most difficult tasks of all. It’s far more difficult than writing the story. I believe this is probably because it is so important. It’s either going to make people want to buy your book or pass it over.
My first word of advice is start early—as soon as your manuscript is accepted—and don’t be afraid to tweak it often, or change it totally, but do have it ready by the time your publisher asks for it.
Over time, I’ve done a lot of research. I even bought and read several books on copywriting. The following is what I’ve come up with:
Facebook Hook: (Why won’t readers be able to put your book down?)
WHO is the protagonist of your story. WHAT goal are the striving for? WHAT obstacle is in their path? That’s it. Simple, right?
I just signed a contract with SMP for my next novel, Scorpio’s Sting. It’s either romantic suspense or suspense with romantic elements. I’m never quite sure.
Here’s my first attempt at a FB hook:
Neelie Nelson and Drew McBain share a common goal to take down the most terrifying drug kingpin in Mexico. But how can they match his power?
Now here’s how to create your blurb:
Before you start, ask yourself who is my audience? What matters to my audience? What is the purpose of my writing? How do I want my audience to feel? What do I want them to take away? Next, answer these questions:
- Setting and Situation: Where does the story start? In a city? In the country? Who is there? What are the circumstances? Asking a question is one way of starting it. It makes your readers think about your topic.
- What is the problem that changes everything? You may want to start it with “But . . .” or “Until …”
- Hope.What happens that gives your characters a chance at overcoming the problem?
- Add mood and drama. Use strong verbs and descriptive words to create the mood you want—is it romantic, scary, happy, sad? Don’t be afraid to use a Thesaurus.
- Make it short, about 100 – 150 words.
- Never give away what happens. Leave it a mystery.
Now here’s what I learned from the copywriting books. Whenever you read a great blurb or even a good review, copy and paste it onto a Word document and keep it in a cheat sheet. You don’t have to plagiarize it or use it in its entirety. All you may need is a word or a phrase. Copywriters use buzzwords and catch phrases over and over all the time. Why? Because they work.
Below are two blurbs I came up with for Scorpio’s Sting—the first before I read up about copywriting and the second using some buzzwords. I would love your comments. I’ll probably tweak whichever one I choose a few times before it’s completed.
Scorpio’s Sting — BLURB #1
Drew McBain and Neelie Nelson have a habit of meeting in strange circumstances, and whenever they do, sparks fly.
When tragedy strikes, Drew becomes hell bent on revenge, and they find they have a common goal. The problem is, how to take down the most powerful drug kingpin in Mexico.
Romance touches their lives, and their fiery relationship comes to a head when Drew asks Neelie for something she has in her possession that is essential for him to have any hope of carrying out his plan for revenge successfully.
The situation becomes urgent, and desperation sends them to the drug lord’s lair with little to no hope of coming out alive.
Scorpio’s Sting – BLURB #2
Scorpio is the symbol of sex, and Scorpios are passionate lovers. Drawn together by strange circumstances, Drew McBain and Neelie Nelson’s hypnotic personalities and magnetic intensity make for an exciting and profound relationship.
They find themselves with a common goal when the la Vibora de Coral Cartel causes unforgivable harm to their loved ones. Ferocious anger and a brooding and passionate desire for revenge draws them together, but how can one man and one woman take down the most powerful and malicious cartel in Mexico?
Will the discovery of a secret vigilante group tip the odds in their favor?
Threats, and fears that others will suffer hinder them, but a lost boy and a loved one in mortal danger make their quest urgent and imperative.
Let me know if this post is a help to you. I hope it is.