Critiquing and Reviewing your Blurbs - NOW CLOSED

I think that your blurb is one the most important thing to hook readers. Whilst we can write blurbs that we think are great and engaging, I think that getting a perspective from others is really important.

So; I’m here to give an in-depth analysis of your blurb. Highlight things that I love, like and dislike. I will make suggestions on how to improve it and may also write a couple of blurbs myself, that you are more than welcome to use and tweak.

The only thing that I ask for is a follow; if you want to read any of my stories, go ahead, although, it isn’t mandatory! I hope that you love them!

(I know some people have a thing about following people so if that’s you; a genuine comment on one of my stories would be grand!)

Link to my profile; CoralScholes_

Current blurb:

I look forwards to helping you guys out and hopefully finding a story to fall in love with - as I have a bit of time on my hands.

Title: run away with me
Genre: adventure
Blurb: Nikita Greenwood just wants to spend her week at camp normally, happily. As does everyone else. But how can you be normal when you’re not sure you’ll ever be allowed to leave and go home again?

After the mysterious death of the English prime minister, an egotistical, arrogant dictator named Marcelo steps up. New laws exist within hours of his rule and immediately Nikita’s home is under threat. Banned from leaving the camp until Marcelo allows movement throughout the country again, Nikita ends up spending a lot longer at camp than anyone anticipated. But what’s so wrong with that when you find your new best friend?

However, all good things must come to an end. And that includes Brookheart camp. With the military taking over and all the kids trapped inside the camp, it’s all Nikita can do to keep her new found friendship with Jack, a young instructor from the camp. Will she be able to escape the horrors England’s new prime minister inflicts on them and find her way home? And keep the friendship she never knew she was missing?

Thanks in advance!

First of all - great title: it gives the reader an idea of what the story may be about.

Your blurb provides plenty of information about your story and what to expect. Your blurb definitely adds action throughout.

The first sentence is okay, although the whole ‘normally, happily.’ doesn’t seem to flow as well as it could. Perhaps a rewording would help pack a punch? The second sentence, impeccable. Highlights mystery and creates further questions for the reader. Why cant she leave? Why cant she go home again? Great - that itself can draw readers in.

Like the scene setting, you give the reader a hint at what to expect. Questions are generated from this paragraph i.e. why is her home under threat? What rules has been put in place? What camp is she at? I do think that you have added some information in the blurb that readers don’t need to know, I think that somethings should be left for readers to find out in the story.

I love that you introduce the name of the camp, I suggest capitalising Camp also, as I assume that is its name Brookheart Camp. You add some more information here that piques my interest, such as the children being trapped at camp and the whole friendship between her and Jack. The questions you add at the end of each sections help readers think about things they never have before, I really like the way that it reads.

Overall; your current blurb is good. You have lots of hooks and information that generates questions however, personally, I think that this blurb may be too long with too much information in there. Below I have curated a couple of blurbs, feel free to rip them to shreds, alter them, take sentences from or use the whole thing.

Nikita Greenwood wants her week at camp to be filled with memories and laughter, as do the other teenagers attending Brookheart Camp. But how can you live an ordinary life when you’re not sure you’ll ever be allowed to leave?

Marcello, an egotistical and arrogant director takes over the country after the mysterious death of England’s prime minister. Nikita is band from leaving camp until Marcello permits movement throughout the country again. With the military taking over, trapping the children inside the camp, all Nikita has is her newly found friendship with Jack.

Will Nikita be able to escape the horrors England’s new prime minister inflicts on the country? Will she find her way home? Will she be able to keep the friendship that she never knew was missing from her life?

Nikita Greenwood was enjoying Brookheart Camp, until the news surrounding the mysterious death of their prime minister slips into camp. Within hours of England’s prime ministers death, Marcelo, an arrogant and egotistical director takes over, creating strict new laws. With the military taking over and all the children trapped inside the camp, Jack - a young instructor from the camp - becomes her distraction. Will she be able to escape the horrors from England’s prime minister inflicts on the country? Will she be able to find her way home? Will her friendship with Jack survive?

I hope that this has helped? If you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. If you amend your blurb and want me to read through it again, I’d be more than happy too! Also, remember that these are just one persons opinions and suggestions - please don’t feel like you have to change anything if you do not want to. It is your work, your baby. I also love the concept of the story - sounds really thought out!

Hi @CoralScholes :slight_smile: I want to improve my blurb so any suggestions you have will be greatly appreciated.

Title: The Ex
Genre: Romance
Current blurb:
The perfect man just proposed and what was my answer? NO.


Why, you ask? I’m too scared to get my heartbroken AGAIN.

When it came to making decisions in my life, I always jumped first and thought later but spontaneity led me to the worst heartbreak of my life. A heartbreak that no matter how much I try to forget, I realise still remains with me.

Now we’re on an indefinite break. Until he finally comes to his senses, I have to distract myself. All I have to do is focus on running my own restaurant and making sure my best friends have the greatest wedding on earth as their maid of honour.

Simple, right? WRONG.

Guess who re-enters my life after 5 long years? My heart-breaker ex. He’s the best man. And he’s not about to make things easy for me, especially when his grey eyes roam over my body, making every inch of my skin prickle to attention. I can’t help the way the stupid smirk on his full lips causes my breath to hitch or wanting to run my hands through his perfectly styled caramel hair. Did I mention how bad I want to rip his clothes off?

I’m in BIG trouble.

I REFUSE to let him break me again. I WON’T make the same mistake twice. I WILL resist him.

Wish me luck. I’m going to need it.

1 Like

Thanks a lot! This is really helpful. I totally agree with that first line, every time I read it, I always feel like there’s something slightly wrong with it that doesn’t flow. I agree it’s probably a bit long - I think I get carried away! I’m glad you like the title and the concept of the book. I’m going to go back over it all now and make a couple changes. Your examples were very helpful too.

Thanks again.

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Your advice and review is greatly appreciated!

Title: A Song of Tales
Genre: Fantasy
Blurb: Banished to the mortal realm, the Goddess of Fire is sentenced to suffer a tragic death by the sixteenth year in every life time. However, when she was born a mortal, she remembered her celestial birth.

She vowed to ascend back into the realm of the Gods and clear her name, no matter how many reincarnations it will take.

What ill fated journeys will she face as she strives for her goal?

Yes please!
I’m going to put the current blurb in a spoiler because it’s a mature story.

Title: Kaiba’s Prostitute
Genre: Fanfiction, but I write it so that people without any prior knowledge of the fandom can enjoy it too and I want the blurb to reflect that.
Current blurb:

CEO Seto Kaiba visits his brother Mokuba’s side venture in California and goes on a power trip, threatening to fire Mokuba’s best employees and calling the art director’s girlfriend a whore. Who will win the ultimate battle for control? Join the Kaiba brothers at the Silicon Valley Game Developers Summit to find out!

Illustrated by various artists.

My main goals in writing this are:

(1) to present both polyamory and sex work in a positive light.

(2) to tickle the fantasies of Seto Kaiba fans, of which I am obviously one, so I’m tickling my own fantasies here too.

Joan is a stand-in name. Feel free to use your own name if you prefer a Canon x Reader type of experience. Although I ask for an idealized version of myself when I commission artwork for this piece, I keep her physical description in the text minimal for this reason.

Seto Kaiba is 27, Mokuba Kaiba is 22, and Joan is 25.

“Men see beauty wherever they can get it. But that’s the allure of the Red Light Princess. Like any good whore, she’s whoever you want her to be.”
― James W. Bodden

“The more you love, the more you can love–and the more intensely you love. Nor is there any limit on how many you can love. If a person had time enough, he could love all of that majority who are decent and just.”
― Robert A. Heinlein

Submitted to #CCA2019 and other awards such as #TheMintys2019

Disclaimer: This is a work of fan fiction from the Yu-Gi-Oh! world, which is trademarked by the venerable Kazuki Takahashi. I do not claim any ownership over them. This story is for entertainment and is not part of the official story line. I am not making any money from the creation of this story. However, this work of fiction is blended with many of my original ideas. Names, characters, apps, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of my imagination or used in a fictitious manner.

@EmRatosss @MaivPaj @KariRakitan Accepted - please complete payment and I’ll get onto them asap.

@DazzieSh You’re more than welcome. If you want any further advice, don’t hesitate to ask and I’ll try my best to help!

Title: Retribution of The Roar
Genre: Fantasy
Current Blurb: Ryder Radstille, a young warrior from Khenealm is known for two things: his title as “The Roar” for his strength and the other for his ten-year long contract with his sigil partner named Raeya. But ever since their last war with the shadows, he had been distancing himself from her as he was still in the stage of healing from their loss. The enemy took advantage of Ryder’s dilemma and they keep on attempting to revive the wars. Ryder is now faced with two things: to save the world, and to protect the one whom the whole world really means to him. And of the two, Ryder fails one of them.

Your title itself highlights what the whole story is about/based around without having to read it. As its a romance, I assume she will get back with her ex at the end - but I could be very wrong.

It’s been a really long time since I have read a blurb which is written in first person and for your story and the concept, it works well. The one thing that I am not exactly a fan of is the length of the blurb. Usually, I think blurbs should consist of 4-10 sentences - get across the concept of the story without giving out too much information which could be used within the story.

First line creates intrigue, drama I love it. It makes me wonder why she said no, what was so wrong about that guy? Personally, I don’t think the second sentence adds any additional drama or creates any more questions as we know that she said no in the previous line. I like that you answer the question that has been created from the first sentence. This creates more questions and will most definitely pique the interest of the reader - Who broke her heart? How long ago was it?

You give information about her character in the blurb which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but perhaps something that would be more beneficial in your chapters? You highlight that her first heartbreak stays with her, it provides more mystery around the whole break up and their relationship - so really well done on that!

Who is on an indefinite break? Her and the guy who just proposed to her? Her and the guy who broke her heart? I like that you add to the scene, a small restaurant owner in the middle of a serious heartbreak, a great friend and maid of honour to her best friends. Makes me think of all the possibilities, is she going to meet someone at the wedding? Perhaps her ex is the grooms best man - so she has to spend a lot of time around her. So those questions and speculations are exactly what you want when someone reads the blurb - hook their attention and reel them into the story.

Speculation - confirmed. Perhaps, you could withhold some of these details and introduce them within the story - especially the details of his eyes roaming her body, character descriptions etc; I feel like these would suit the chapters more…

I like that you add more intrigue. What mistake did she make? How did he break her heart? Did he cheat on her? Meet someone else? Just fell out of love with her? Great ending to the blurb.

Overall; your current blurb is good; it provides the readers with information about the story and what will happen. I do think that some of the information you have provided would better suit the chapters as at some points, I felt I was reading part of your first chapter. That being said, I like that you get her personality across using the blurb, so that gives me a taste of what to expect living inside her head and how seeing he life will work out as. Below, I have curated a couple of blurbs; feel free to rip them apart, use them, alter them or take a sentence here or there.

The most perfect man just proposed to me and I said no.

Why? I’m just too scared to get my heart broken again. That heartbreak, no matter how hard I try to forget it, gets the better of me and remains with me. Always.

All have to do is focus on running my restaurant, help plan my best friends wedding and be the best maid of honour I can possibly be. Just focus on me, not on (perhaps add his name here?). Which is pretty difficult considering he’s the best man. As much as I remind myself he’s no good for me, I cant help but want to rip his clothes off…

I’m in big trouble. I refuse to let him break me again and I know that I wont make the same mistake twice… I will resist him…

Wish me luck, I’m going to need it.

These are just some suggestions and observations made by a fellow writer and reader. They aren’t perfect and I hope that they give you an idea of what people think when reading your blurb. If you have any questions about it or want me to review one that you edit etc, do not hesitate to ask!

1 Like

Done! :smiley:

Thank-you so much for taking the time to really consider and analyse my blurb :slight_smile: your critique is so helpful! I will definitely cut out some of that additional information better suited for the chapters. Your examples are also beneficial. I’ll be using them as a point of reference as I make the necessary changes.

Thanks again!

I completely get it, I know the struggles of writing a fan fiction (back in the day used to write One Direction ones, long gone are those days though!). So, you blurb does a good job of not highlighting what fandom it is - to me, I wouldn’t have guessed it was a fan fiction - so you do a good job of not excluding readers.

I’m guessing the first paragraph is your blurb and the rest is something else? Perhaps further information for readers before reading? So firstly, I would suggest removing all of the information after Illustrated by various artists. You could put the following information into a chapter before begging your story? Although this is just a suggestion as I found it all a little bit overwhelming for a blurb. But like I said, I am purely one person with one opinion.

CEO Seto Kaiba vists his brother Mokuba’s side venture and goes on a power trip, threatening to fire Mokuba’s best employees and calling the art directors girlfriend a whore.

I like that you introduce your readers/potential readers to the main character, Seto Kaiba, and his job, CEO. It gives us some information about him which helps create a vision of him. You give us information about where the story is heading and what to expect.

Whilst you mention about his brothers side venture - I am unsure on what it is? I am assuming that the side venture is to do with gaming - but I could be soooo wrong. Maybe stating what it is would help reduce confusion for potential readers.

Instead of stating that he calls the art directors girlfriend a whore (which I think would be more impactful inside the chapter) perhaps you could alter it to creating a rift? Or falling out with them?

Who will win the ultimate battle for control?

I like this line a lot.

Join the Kaiba brothers at the Silicon Valley Game Developers Summit to find out!

I think this is where the whole fandom comes into light? Potentially?

Overall, the length of your description is great. You give readers enough information to decide if the story is for them and create questions of their open that they want answered. I do think that there could be some information removed and revealed within the chapters - you don’t want to give away some vital drama.

I have done a bit of rewording of your blurb. Feel free to completely ignore my advice/suggestions/opinions, or use them - its completely up to you!

CEO Seto Kaiba visits his brother, Mokuba’s side venture or (gaming company/game developing company?) in California and goes on a power trip, threatening to fire employees and causing a rift between his brother, himself and the art director after a heated argument. Who will win the ultimate battle for control? Join the Kaiba brothers at the Silicon Valley Game Developers Summit to find out!

I hope that this has helped and I haven’t been too harsh. Remember that is just one persons opinion! If you have any questions about it or make amendments, don’t hesitate to ask for further advice etc! Good luck with the story!

1 Like

Ahh, a fantasy, one of my favourite genres! I love the title and the blurb definitely hooks me!

Love the use of banished here - it creates intrigue and hooks me instantly. Questions are generated i.e. Why was she banished to the moral realm? Where was she before? Will she remember the realm she was in before? You introduce us to the main character; The Goddess of Fire and information about her past. So she only lives until sixteen, then she is born again… blooming hell…

You continue to add hooks throughout your blurb and that is so important. These hooks will help people remember your story and will make them want to read to find out what happens to the Goddess of Fire. I also wonder if she will remember every single reincarnation. Is it painful? Does she meet someone to help her through this journey? Will she be alone, never forgiven by the Gods? Will one of the other Gods help her reclaim her place in her rightful realm?

I honestly don’t know, I will have to read to find out…

What else can I say other than WOW? Seriously, this book seems straight up my alley; it helps that your blurb is written really well. There is very little that I can suggest to improve it. It is short, provides relevant information and has great grammar, punctuation, spelling and an extensive vocabulary which will hopefully continue into your chapters.

The one thing that I think would be beneficial would be perhaps her name in the mortal realm and altering the order of sentences. So;

Banished to the mortal realm, the Goddess of Fire is sentenced to suffer a tragic death by the sixteenth year in every life. She vowed to ascend back into the realm of the Gods to clear her name, no matter how many reincarnations it will take.

Yet, when she was born a mortal, name here is she has one, she remember her celestial birth.

What ill fated journeys will she face as she strives for her goal? Will she ever ascend?

I hope that this helps you and if you have any further questions about your blurbs please don’t hesitate to ask! I wish you all the best in your story and look forwards to reading it!

1 Like

@Zeeroe9 - I’ll get onto this tomorrow morning; I have been so busy today - I hope that’s okay?

Haha, the funny thing is that it doesn’t cause a rift at all. The big twist is that the woman is actually quite thrilled to have the opportunity, and her boyfriend is supportive. I was kinda going for the red herring approach in the blurb. The real antagonist in the story is society.

So I’m not sure if I should reveal that or how to go about doing so.

Title: Addicted to Adrenaline
Genre: Action
Blurb: Living illegally was supposed to be fun, right?
When an American daredevil moves to a neighboring country in order to leave behind his troublesome family, a new start awaits. But after meeting another individual who has sought to be just like him, a deep truth is revealed behind a digital mask: resulting in betrayal and a deadly rivalry with both of their identities and illegal lives at stake.

Thank you so much!

Thank you for the help and taking your time to look at my blurb! Will definitely take your advice to consideration!

Title: Empire of Jadase: New Day
Genre: Fantasy
Current blurb: […there will be a child who will be born into this Galaxy. …his wings will be like that of a Paragon, a perfect 100-goldened feathers …this child will be blessed with luck… …he will bring peace, hope and will be light in the darkness. But… he is born to destroy Jadase!]

Laquadia, the First Prince of Jadase, loved his nation as much as he loved his woman, Serah. Sadly, Jadase declared war to her nation. And he had no choice but to follow.

In the face of his woman’s doom, Laquadia done everything he could to help her. Then, he met this young man, named Mozti. He doesn’t had any information about him. However, the prophecy was pointing at him.

[The choice is to kill him, but the hope is to set him free.]

Hope, was what Laquadia needed at that moment. Will his choice to set him free, was right? Was he considering to be his nation’s enemy?

At this point, one thing’s for sure, Jadase will be ruined.

Thank you!

Title: Vega of the Sky
Genre: Fantasy/mythology-science fiction
Current blurb:
Seventeen-year-old Vega loves avocado toast and pumpkin spice lattes- not magic. And to make her life worse, even her horoscope hadn’t predicted that her almost hook-up, Cash, would turn out to be her soul mate. Great. Unfortunately for her, she can’t just get rid of the weirdo (even though she tried) as he may know a thing or two about her missing brother and could help bring about his safe return.
Seventeen-year-old Cash’s hands are always sweaty and his heart beats in his head. Then he meets Vega and knows everything will be fine. She is his soul mate, the love of his life and most importantly the only person who can help retrieve his missing memories.
Vega and Cash must comprise. To find her brother they need his memories. In search of answer, they go to Kronos, a country run by the mysterious underground organization the Zodiac 12 with a political agenda that has changed from legalizing recreational lotus flower to becoming gods themselves.
To become a god one must kill a god. The Zodiac 12 believes Vega’s brother is that god and their next victim. As August 7th draws near Cash and Vega must use a little magic, pepper spray and eyeliner to save her brother and the world from the Zodiac 12.