My Special Subscribers’ Package, available to those who subscribe to the Inner Circle Writers’ Magazine, consists of a range of services at a greatly reduced price, and last time in this blog I looked at both beta reading and proofreading. But even more is included.
Story Synopsis and Blurb
Helping writers construct both a story synopsis (for editors and publishers to read, outlining the whole story) and putting together dynamic blurbs which hook potential readers’ attention (without giving away the storyline) are also things I do for writers which can be of tremendous benefit, as I know that blurbs in particular are things that many struggle with.
Why do so many writers have trouble with these things? It’s mainly because they have approached the story from an entirely different angle: they have sat down and asked their imagination to yield to them a piece of fiction - or in some cases, their imagination has grabbed them by their collars, sat them down and demanded that a particular work be permitted to emerge.
In these common scenarios, writers are the recipients of works from somewhere in their ‘heads’. All that they have done, it seems, is write down what was ‘given’ to them. They may have felt as though they had some say in the matter, and usually there are points at which the writer wrestles with the raw material and feels as though he or she is ‘knocking it into shape’, but in terms of a product, the work usually retains a sense that it has arrived ‘from elsewhere’.
To be then asked to summarise this thing in cold terms, to describe its twists and turns, its colours and its nuances, its life and its energies in the form of a comprehensible rational description is therefore often hard. To many writers, it ‘feels’ wrong: like trying to some up someone’s life in a few words. There is a struggle to find shape, to adequately describe internal relationships, to pin down relevance. No wonder many writers balk at this and even resent it. To a few, it can seem as though they are writing an obituary for a piece of work before it has even lived and breathed.
Blurbs can be even worse. So many writers think of blurbs as super-condensed forms of their stories. They think that they have to take a novel or short story and reduce it down to a piece of flash fiction. But most assuredly that is NOT what a blurb should be.
That’s right: a blurb is not a smaller version of a story.
A blurb is a tiny movie trailer for a story.
Think of your book as a movie. How could you show the most dynamic, haunting, appealing, action-packed parts of your book in a few words, without giving away anything about its plot or outcome?
Writing effective story synopses, whose job is to convey the outline of a story to agents or publishers, and putting together powerful blurbs, whose task is to magnetically attract reader attention, are two very different things. And they are best done by someone who has studied fiction in great depth for a long time.
I can usually see right through to the heart of a story fairly quickly in a way that, when described, would excite readers; I can also normally outline the shape of a piece of fiction in strong enough terms so that a publisher or agent would see a market for it.
Professional feedback on your story synopsis, with suggestions for possible improvement would normally cost £50.00.
A blurb workshop, devising the most ideal, hard-hitting blurb for your work, designed to grab reader attention, would normally cost £50.00.
This is years of expertise reduced to a commercial fee. But the Special Subscribers’ Package includes these things for even less.