Book Blurb for Time Shifters – WIPpet Wednesday

DSC00667Choosing an extract that corresponded with today’s date and didn’t give too much of the plot away was proving to be difficult so I thought I’d share my first stab at the blurb for Time Shifters instead. Part of it I’d written a few months ago, some of it I wrote this morning so I’d be very interested to know what you think. I’ve had to be ingenious with WIPpet maths to make this work for the 28th August. The blurb is exactly 101 words… 2 + 8 = 10 (101 = 10 + 1 for luck). And I was never any good at maths when I was at school…

 

When Maisie Brown is time shifted to 1471 during a school trip to Warwick Castle, it’s the beginning of an adventure bigger than she could ever have dreamed of. The only problem is she has to share it with Lizzie Andrews, the class bully, instead of her best friend Danny Romano, who is caught up amongst the Earl of Warwick’s army marching to battle…

Will Maisie and Lizzie find Danny before it’s too late? Will they manage to get home without being time shifted again? And just who are the mysterious hooded riders who seem so intent on hunting them down?

Comments about what works, what doesn’t, whether the premise hooks you or if it would make you want to buy the book for yourself, your kids, niece, nephew or Godchildren will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

WIPpet Wednesday, hosted by K L Schwengel, is all about sharing your latest work in progress. Simply post an extract of your WIP that corresponds in some way to the date and add your link to the linky here. Why not have a read of all the other great WIPpets whilst you’re there too.

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26 Comments

  1. This is a really good blurb Kate. You’ve covered all the bases: a brief outline of the novel, the characters in it and a good question at the end to hook the reader. Are you going to send it to an agent or self-publish it?

  2. I love the first paragraph. It might just be a pet peeve of mine, but I really don’t like book blurbs that just ask questions. I’d rather have a second paragraph that’s just as enticing as the first. The questions that are usually asked for these type of things are all questions the readers can come up with easily, so I tend to feel like it’s not taking the brains of the reader into the equation. However, that’s probably just my personal opinion.

    So yup–that’s all I got today!!

    Missing the puppy =(

    • You’re not the only one who doesn’t like questions in the blurb, so that’s a fair point. Admittedly it feels easier to pose questions instead of writing a second paragraph that entices so I think I will give that a go and see what I come up with. Many thanks for your comments they’re really helpful.

      Sorry, no cute puppy pics today – although I’m sure I’ll find a way to get a photo of Frodo into a post again before long. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. I didn’t like the questions either. This is off the top of my head, so far from perfect, but something with the rhythm of: Now Maisie and Lizzie must find Danny before they get time shifted again or risk being stuck in the past forever. Some kind of: the stakes and why they matter set up.

    Sounds like an interesting story though. :)

    • Thanks Jae. Adrian felt the same way about the questions so I’m definitely going to rewrite the second paragraph again and see how it goes. Thanks for your thoughts. :-)

  4. Great blurb. I am hooked! The only questions I have are these: Against who is the army marching into battle? You mentioned time shifting. If I’m coming to this book for the first time, I would wonder who are what controls the time shifting. How does the time shifting work? Do they have a stone or something that causes them to shift in time? Is there a nefarious group controlling time shifting? How long do they stay in the area to which they have shifted? You mentioned hooded riders. Thatโ€™s good. But I think we need to know a little bit more about the external forces working against Maisie and Lizzie and the stakes of their uneasy pairing. Danny shifted back in time right? So why do they have to find him if he has the ability to time shift also? Iโ€™m not trying to be a pain. Iโ€™m asking questions a reader who reads this blurb cold would ask.

    • Excellent. Glad it hooked you! I can answer the question against who the army is marching into battle with and add it into the blurb easily enough. Explaining the time shifting and how it works however will be pretty impossible in the blurb as Maisie, Lizzie and Danny don’t actually fully understand themselves until later in the novel and to divulge that in the blurb would give too much of the plot away. I will have to have a think if there’s a way to add any more details in… hmmmm you’ve got me thinking!

      Danny did shift back in time to 1471 as well but separate to Maisie and Lizzie and they see him caught up with the army and go after him (which is why they need to find/save him). These are all really good questions – this is why it’s so good to get opinions from people who don’t know the ins and outs of the story like I do. A fresh perspective helps so much – thank you!

      • I want to jump in here. I wouldn’t worry about explaining the Time shifting phenomenon. If that is something we are curious about and we want to open the book, then the blurb has done its job. This is the reason I hate movie trailers nowadays. In two minutes they take you through practically the whole plot of the movie, and they show all the funny moments. I want to be intrigued!

        There were previous comments above about the second paragraph changing into less of a questions and including a little bit more intrigue. I agree with that, but overall this caught my attention and made me curious to thumb through the pages. Damn computer screen!! WHERE ARE THE PAGES???? *huffs*

        • Glad it caught your attention and it helps that you agree with the others about the questions in the second paragraph. With so many people in agreement I know it’s definitely the right thing to rework it.

          Oh, and sorry for having no pages for you to thumb through! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  5. I love it, but then, I already knew I wanted to read this one, so I’m probably not the best judge.

    BTW, I opened an e-mail from Amazon.ca this morning, and it recommended the Butterfly Storm to me (because I had looked at it, but still. Good to know they’ve got your back!)

    • Loving it is good – I’ll take a compliment anytime! ๐Ÿ˜‰

      It’s definitely good to know that amazon have been spreading the word. Last Thursday I had an incredible 245 sales of The Butterfly Storm in one day and I’m putting that down to amazon sending out an email with my book in it – it was at #5 in the literary and women’s literary fiction categories at the time so I think it went out in a bestsellers list. It hasn’t happened since but it was very exciting to even happen the once!

  6. Nice blurb overall, just a couple things. I’d get rid of the ellipses after the first paragraph. A simple period will do. I’m with those who don’t like the questions in the second paragraph. One might be fine, but not a whole series. As the reader, I should be asking the questions when I’m done reading the blurb. That means you’ve given me just enough to pull me in and left me wanting more.

  7. Kate, I can totally understand the difficult with explaining the time shifting. So feel free to ignore that. I just mentioned questions that came to mind when I read the blurb. The fact that questions immediately came to mind proved that I was interested–deeply interested.

    • Ah thank you L. Marie, so pleased the blurb got you interested. It’s really good to know the questions that you thought of – will definitely help me to rewrite it.

  8. I hadn’t picked up on Lizzie being the bully. Sounds like another fun level of plot. If you are gearing this just to kids, it’s great. If you think it’s the kind of YA you’d like to market to adults and kids, you might leave out the part about a school trip, or find a way to reword it so school doesn’t show up in the first sentence. Just a thought. If I had a godchild, I’d buy it for her!

    • Hopefully ‘Lizzie the bully’ comes across particularly towards the beginning of the novel. I didn’t want them to be best buddies going off on an adventure together and thought there should be some conflict between them. I was intending to market it towards kids, although I think it could be something that adults would hopefully enjoy too. Happy you’d buy it if you had a godchild! :-)

  9. I think Alana has it about Lizzie… While I know we’ve been told about her being a bully, I’ve not caught much sign of it (hard to do with the limited snips a WIPpet offers, I know). As for questions… I always feel obligated to ask them too, yet I almost never read books that ask me questions… I feel like I’m getting the third degree without being able to just relax with the characters.

    I’d be interested to see how you rewrite it, Kate.

  10. Well, you already know you have me sold. Hmm… I think saying something about best friend Danny and class bully Lizzie being shifted with her should come right after the introduction. (I haven’t read anyone else’s comments this time, so I apologize if I’m being redundant.)

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