Good morning from Glen Eyrie, a beautiful castle conference center hidden away outside Colorado Springs, where my roomie and her sister are vacationing before the Realm Makers conference next weekend.
I’ve been working on explaining the process behind publishing a book, whether as a small press or an individual self publisher, and we’re rapidly approaching the big reveal! And one of the big lessons I learned in my personal writing life has to do with the back cover copy. So I thought I’d better share a little about it.
Writing the back cover copy
It’s as hard as writing synopses (which my friends and I jokingly refer to as bilgesnipes … but that’s a post for another day). I’m so fortunate to have a friend who is able to summarize better than I can.
As with everything else, I can’t tell you that what we’re doing is going to work. But we think it will. And if you agree with us and want to do it this way, go for it. If you don’t, we’re not saying this is the only way it can be done.
Without further ado, here is the final back cover copy for Nameless.
Sweet, short, to the point. It’s moving. It’s emotional. It’s dramatic. It’s exciting. It makes you wonder who Xander is and what secrets Kale is hiding.
The trick about the back cover copy isn’t to get you to read the whole book. The trick is the get you to read the first few pages. The goal of the first few pages is to get you to read the rest of the book.
We took a two-fold approach on the back cover copy. Both I and my brilliant best friend and roomie took a stab at it, and then we combined what we’d written. I can summarize. That’s not a problem. But summarizing and making it interesting? That’s where she comes in.
So this is my recommendation if you’re self-publishing: get someone else to write your back cover copy.
You’re too close to it. And you can go to every bookstore in your city and read the back of every book on the shelf, and you won’t be any closer to being able to apply the lessons learned there to your own manuscript. Because there will always be that nagging little voice in the back of your head pointing out how different your story is in comparison to those.
So once all of these pieces and parts were assembled and all the information was sent, the designer sent me two options for covers. Want to know which ones I picked? Check back next Saturday for the final cover reveal for Nameless!