Rip apart my blurb!


#1

I am writing a blurb for a story. I am trying to work out the kinks and I am struggling a bit. This is the version I am slightly happy with. Help?

“What do you see?” He asked.

“I see pain.” She said.

In Rawthor; the Moon has turned red. The heathens, the scholars, the believers all agree on one thing - this has never happened before and that it means something.


Usman Bakhtyar Khan is a freelancing sellsword. Someone, who is in good demand because the people of Rawthor need him.

Born and brought up by the street, this is the life that he has always known. But things change when his good friend comes with a new client; a man who has a dangerous reputation.

This man is willing to put everyone that Usman loves - not many! - at stake if Usman refuses to work for him. He has no option but to agree.

But this mission is difficult, possibly a death sentence for Usman. It becomes more difficult when he falls in love with the wrong woman.

Will Usman succeed?

Will he managed to keep his loved one safe?

_


#2

LOVE opening dialogue–I maybe would edit to get rid of the ‘he said’ ‘she said.’

I think possibly you could get rid of “The heathens, the scholars, the believers all agree on one thing - this has never happened before and that it means something.”

OR edit and replace something with a more specific token like:
“The heathens, thescholars, the believers all agree on one thing - a red Moon means [death/pain/X].”

Someone , who is in good demand because the people of Rawthor need him.
I would delete the comma.

Born and Brought up by on the street, this is the life that he has always known.

But things his life changes when his good friend comes with a new client; a man who has a dangerous reputation.

This man is willing to put everyone threatens the lives of precious few that who Usman loves - not many! -at stake if Usman refuses to work for him.

He Usman has no option but to agree to an almost impossible mission.

But this mission is difficult, possibly a death sentence for Usman. It becomes more difficult A mission that becomes more difficult when he falls in love with the wrong woman.

So in sum (using Jedi in place of whatever works for your story):

“What do you see?”

“I see pain.”

In Rawthor, the Moon has turned red. The heathens, the scholars, the believers all agree on one thing - a red Moon means the Jedi has returned.

Usman Bakhtyar Khan is a freelancing sellsword. Someone who is in good demand because the people of Rawthor need him and he’s known as one of the best they’ve ever seen.

Life on the streets is the only life Usman has ever known.

But that life changes for him when he’s introduced to a new client; a man with a dangerous reputation. This man threatens the lives of precious few who Usman loves if he refuses to work for him. Usman has no option but to agree to an almost impossible mission.

A mission that becomes more difficult when he falls in love with the wrong woman.


#3

Sounds good! Is it live? Link


#4

I’m actually not a fan of the dialogue at all. I will admit my bias right now: I hate excerpts and rhetorical questions in blurbs. So take that opinion with a grain of salt because there will never be a time where I advise people to keep excerpt and questions. :joy:

I’m not connecting the first part with the second part, and that’s another reason I don’t like it. What does the moon turning red have to do with Usman’s journey? For me, this is the true core of your blurb:

Now I’ll go part by part with the questions and comments I have about it.

This lacks clarity to me. What is a sell sword and why is he in high demand? Maybe show us a little more by changing the wording around. That his skill with the sword is the best in the land, or that sellswords are ruthless and can get any job done without burden. What makes Usman in such high demand?

Not keen on the whole “not many” added in here. And why does he have no option but to agree? Who is the person that Usman has such a strong connection to that he see’s no other choice but to help a random stranger with a random quest?

How is it difficult? Show us a little more. The stakes and actual task of this book are too vague. What is Usman doing in this book? Is he trying to figure out why the moon turned red? Trying to save this woman? What’s happening?


#5

It’s a bit long; looking at all that text puts me off a bit. In Wattpad’s writer resources, it recommends keeping your blurb within 100 words.

Cool story though.


#6

The issue with this for me as a reader is that in this two line excerpt, both pieces of dialog has tags, which I prefer to be limited. I rather the writer show me who is speaking through thought and action rather than telling me. I think relying on tags limits the description the scene needs to come alive for the readers.


#7

It’s a small enough piece of an excerpt where it probably wouldn’t bother me as much as excerpts usually bother me.

But I also notice several mistakes in here that would make me feel like I wouldn’t be able to become lost in the writing.


#8

No. It’s not live, yet. I need to have some buffer chapters ready before I start posting. Thank you for your critique. It helped too much!


#9

These are some genuinely good feedback! I will add more clarity. The lack of details were because I did not want to spoil a lot of things. I mean, some of your questions get answered in the very first chapters. I did not want my blurb to simply be repetition of that.

I will probably change the blurb again, taking all your advices. The dialogue is actually an important part of the story. I usually do not do dialogues for the same reasons that you told me. But the question has a deep symbolic meaning. I will remove the dialogue tag but at the same time I did not want to giveaway the characters in the very first sentences.

Thank you!


#10

I will try to cut short on the words. I thought so too. Thank you!


#11

Ah, okay. When you say mistakes - are those grammar mistakes? Or the one that people above pointed out. If it is grammar then I can assure you that I will check it before I publish. This was a rough draft that I wrote on the app.


#12

“What do you see?”

She stood in the balcony staring at the red moon. Few strands of her dark hair moving gently because of the breeze. He stood there, watching. He wanted this memory etched in his mind.

“I see pain.” She answered his question and he froze. He knew what she meant. He had never felt this helpless.

__

The Red Moon is a rare phenomenon that has occurred in the skies of Rawthor. It is all the people of Rawthor can talk about. The occurrence and what could it exactly mean.

Heathens, scholars, believers all agree on one thing - this not a good omen for Rawthor.

Usman Bakhtyar Khan does not care for the red moon or the various interpretations people have of its occurrence. No, he only cares to meet ends and take care of the girl that means the world to him.

He is a sellsword. A very good one!

But his life takes an abrupt turn when he gets a new client. This client is willing to put everyone that Usman loves at stake, as long as Usman does exactly what the client wants. Usman is supposed to kill someone - someone too darn powerful.

Usman cannot refuse.

This mission could be a possible death sentence for Usman. But this mission takes a turn to the worst when he falls in love with a wrong woman.


#13

Ohhhhhhh I like!


#14

I still don’t like the excerpt. You say it’s important but out of context it means absolutely nothing to me, it’s just two random people talking and it’s not even lines that are gripping to me.

As for the rest of the blurb, I like it a lot better. Here’s my suggestions:

I might suggest tightening it up a little bit. Maybe something like The Red Moon is a rare phenomenon that has everyone in Rawthor wondering why it’s happening now. This shortens it down to one sentence but includes both that it’s happening and that the people are wondering why it’s happening. Then you could move the heathens line to the first paragraph and combine the two. So it would be: The Red Moon is a rare phenomenon that has everyone in Rawthor wondering why it’s happening now. Heathens, scholars, and believers all agree on one thing - it’s not a good omen for Rawthor. (I just tweaked the heathen’s line a little)

Is this girl his wife? Girlfriend? Daughter? I’d like it to be a bit more specific so we know how she’s important to him. Just as an example: Usman Bakhtyar Khan doesn’t care about the red moon or the people’s fear over it. He wants only to make ends and take care of his daughter/wife/sister, the only person who means anything to him.

I’d still like to see a quick mention as to what a sellsword is. Doesn’t have to be long, just give me some context. Even if you’re answering it in the first chapter, let me know right off the bat what a sellsword is. So an example would be He is a sellsword, a hired thug to right a persons wrongs. And he’s very good at his job.

For the most part this is fine. But if he only cares about earning his living and taking care of the girl mentioned a little before, then I might emphasize the girl here more instead of a vague everyone. Suggestion time: His life takes an abrupt turn when a new client seeks him out. The client willingly put’s Usman’s sister/daughter/wife in harms way unless Usman does exactly what he asks. The job is to kill and the target is someone far more powerful than Usman has ever faced before

This is the part where you really lose me. It’s too vague and not really a clear stake. Particularly the use of “possible” does it or does it not put his life on the line? And what woman? Is it the same woman as previously mentioned? A different one? That’s where being more specific about the girl before will help a little. But still, make the stakes a little more clear. Plus how does this all tie into the red moon? Example time of how you might be able to tie it together, obviously without knowing for myself how it all links: Usman reluctantly accepts the job, putting his life on the line. A task which becomes harder as he falls in love with the very woman who caused the Red Moon in the first place. Usman is torn between duty and desire. If he picks the wrong choice all of Rawthor will crumble.

Overall, aside from the excerpt I do feel this is a vast improvement. It still needs more specifics, but it’s getting there. Don’t be afraid of having more clarity just because it’s answered in the first chapter. Some things are okay to be repeated because the blurb needs to give the reader a sense of the characters and the journey they’re on. Unless it’s something common like a character is a blacksmith (everyone knows what a blacksmith does) you need to give us context as to what they are. Doeesn’t have to be long, can just be a quick single sentence explaining what a sellsword is and who the people are.

Hope that helps!


#15

Third attempt! I hope you guys don’t mind.

In Rawthor, the red moon weeps . . .

__

Usman Bakhtyar is no ordinary sellsword—born and brought up by the streets, he can be ruthless and cold-blooded when he needs to. Only this year, he has made a promise to the girl that he loves like a sister. She has asked him to stop doing what he does, but this is the life that Usman has always known.

However, his life changes for the worst when a client finds him. He has a job for Usman, a job that Usman deems impossible. The client is willing to put the one person that Usman holds important to him - his sister - at stake if he refuses. But if he does do what the client asks him to do, there are chances that he will not make out of it alive.

This job could be the end of the fresh start that he had always wanted.


#16

I am in no way qualified to help with blurbs but…

What does the red moon have to do with the rest of the blurb?

I can’t quite see a connection between the two.


#17

The red plays an intergral role in the story as such. It is continuously present in the story. This is a sequel to my first story and the duology is called The Moon Chronicles.

The Moon needs to mentioned; but I am really trying to find a way mention in the blurb. So feel free to give suggestions.

Blurbs are horrible!


#18

It’s getting there! Couple more suggestions but I do agree, tie it into the red moon because right now the red moon is just randomly thrown in there. What does Usman’s quest have to do with the red moon? Feel free to spoil it because hearing the spoiler answer might help me to help you. Or if you’d rather, feel free to PM me on Wattpad and we can talk about how you can connect the red moon to Usman. Anyway here’s my suggestions on this latest attempt:

How does being raised on the streets make him different from any other sellsword? I still have no idea what a sellsword is :joy: So maybe it’s obvious to people who do know that term.

I’d probably drop the “only this year” part. He’s made a promise to a girl he loves like a sister. She pleaded with him to stop being a sellsword, but it’s the life Usman has always known. However, for her, he’d do anything.

Everything changes when a new client offers him a job Usma deems impossible.

Since you already established the girl is important, you probably don’t have to mention that again. So my suggestion would be The client willingly puts Usman’s sister in harms way if he, but it’s a job that could cost Usman his life. However, I would like to see a little more about the job so we know why it’s so important this client is willing to risk someone elses life over it.

My only real problem with this line is that it feels like it’s repeating what was established by the rest of the blurb.


#19

Ooooh it being a sequel does change things a little! Some things may have already been established in the previous book that doesn’t need to be repeated in the blurb. So that might change some of what I suggested a bit then, particularly with the sellsword.