Every book needs to be appealing and eye-catching at first sight. Authors are getting advice from everywhere and everyone that the cover needs to be a bombastic eye-catcher, but have you ever gotten advice to have a killer back cover blurb?
It is ridiculous to speak about the importance of a great and professionally done book cover when everyone knows that this is the first thing a reader sees, but the importance of the back cover blurb is still a new topic in the world of indie authors and self-publishers.
The front book cover says, look at me, pick me up, buy me, but the back cover blurb says, READ ME! This is the second thing everyone will look at after picking up the book – so take the time to do it right! It is your book, your work and your sales! If you have no time to do this right and don’t take the time to show the best you can via your book cover blurb, then leave everything else to fate too, because this is the right way to start doing everything wrong!
The part that follows is for those who plan to take some time out of their lives to make a killer book cover blurb that is going to appeal a great deal to their target audience. Your back cover blurb needs to be engaging and alluring, it has to attract but leave some things unsaid, so that the reader wants more.
You have to convince the reader that this book is worth spending his money on!
But don’t be misleading or false, you need to be concise while telling it, but also very wise in your choice of words. The part where you should sum up the plot of your book is something you will do best, given that you wrote it, you live it and you love it! There is one thing you need to keep in mind though. Don’t write another book on the back cover. A lot of authors love their book so much that they want to place the whole plot on the back together with too many endorsements and a too large biography. You need to polish up your blurb and make it as robust as the actual book.
What an Ideal Back Cover Blurb Should Contain
# A Short Description of the Book
When I say short, I mean short (not more than two short paragraphs). Mention the very essence of the book, maybe the main characters, the very reason to read this book, but don’t write too much. Not only will the reader be bored reading it, your designer will have to become a magician to fit everything into the small space he has to place it. Books that mention the name of the characters unlike mentioning them as “a woman” or “a child” have a higher sales rate than others. If your book has the same plot or is similar to another already published, more popular book, don’t hesitate to mention that. People are keener to buy something similar to something popular! If you have written a technical or similar book that has no characters or plots, write the very essence of the book and mention something very notable for someone from your target group.
# Your Biography
Everyone likes to read a few lines about the author. Choose a nice, smiling photo of yourself that will be placed next to the biography and make sure the photo isn’t blurry. Say everything you think the reader would like to know in a few sentences. Remember, there is a limited space on your back cover.
If you have some endorsements, include them into your back cover blurb. It is nice to see that you have positive feedbacks to your book. Books with endorsements have a higher sales rate than others. But if you have none, don’t worry, the mentioned points are important enough.
If your book has won awards, or if you are an award winning author with prior works, mention that. If you haven’t noted that on your front cover, mention it on the back, right on top.
I have to mention once again, because this is a very important thing and might be a problem in the end – You don’t have too much space on your back cover! You also don’t want to have too much text that will be written in a very small, unreadable font, so use the most important content and if you don’t know how much is too much, consult a book designer about it and make sure that everything is readable.
There are a lot of back cover blurbs that can even lower your sales possibilities! A blurb that tells it all, or is as long as the book itself can be such a blurb. You don’t want the reader to have to carry a magnifying glass so that he can read the blurb either. Make sure the back doesn’t look messy and musty.
The book cover design and the back cover blurb are just a key and a keyhole to a door of unimaginable hard work, tons of lost hours and a beautiful result
If you don’t bother to provide the key and the keyhole to the reader, he might break in, but very few do.