[Pitch Slapped] Amping up the details. Like a boss.

The email:

Dear Canaries,

I come with bowed head and outstretched arms to lay my blurb upon the sacrificial alter that is Pitch Slaps.
I know it’s too long but I can’t figure out what would be best to remove. It is my first time, you know. I would really appreciate your help, even if you tear into it like a 4 year old’s Christmas present from Santa.
Thanks for your consideration.
Brooke Hodge
Of course! It will be our feathery pleasure. But first, the blurb:


My very first reaction: What is all this backstory and world-building doing in the story blurb? Unless your story is specifically about political maneuvering or world-structure shenanigans, the rule of thumb is as follows: “Use no more than one sentence to set up your world. If you have to.”

Second: Rhetorical questions.


And so, the first cut will look something like this:



Narrowed down to the meat of things, it’s clear that the story suffers from a lack of details – or rather, the wrong details. There’s some sort of enemy, she trust someone, there’s a unknown conflict and she’s out of depth, whatever that means, and she has to “fight.”

See: Playing chess with vampires, and other unfortunate encounters

Some level of mystery is fine (like if you wanna keep it under wraps that Anais’ evil clone twin is at the bottom of it all), but too much and the story summary becomes wishy-washy. Don’t let the blurb play coy. 

So let’s see what happens when we inject a few specific details into the story summary.


More details can be added as appropriate. The blurb revision also assumes that the story is going to be a science fiction romance, with emphasis on the Romeo and Juliet storyline between Anais and her Quaan.

If the real meat of the story is the adventure and survival aspect, with suspense on whether Quaan will betray her, and her need to get back home asap to unravel an astromining conspiracy, well, then a different order and different details need to be brought out to the fore.

And so forth.

Go blurb, go. Go forth and sell all the books.

Hungry for more pitches? Read more slaps here.

Do you have a pitch or synopsis that you’d like to send to the sacrificial altar? Email it our way  to canarypost@gmail.com

2 thoughts on “[Pitch Slapped] Amping up the details. Like a boss.

  1. Pingback: Today’s Book Blurb: Dogs of War | The Book Canaries

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