Book Blurbs for Your Great American Novel

Jul 7th, 2011 | By | Category: Columns

Book blurbs are as old as I am (14th century), and have become part of a marketing strategy for an author to establish him/herself by utilizing the praise of demigod writers like Neil Gaiman or ThatGuyWhoLikesRunOnSentences (Hint: It’s William Faulkner and he’s dead). A phrase of praise from a well-respected author like Connie Willis or Nicole Ritchie can add to the esteem and sale of the author’s hard work. However some, like Salon writer Laura Miller, believe that the blurb is nothing but a calculated pat on the back.  She writes, “blurbs are a product of all the stuff people claim to hate about publishing: its cliquishness and insularity.”

Well, to heck with her well-thought-out and logical opinions! I want praise, and I want it printed on a shiny cover with my name on it. I’ve been working hard to collect my own blurbs for my future novel. Here is a brief sampling:


“Sexy but not rapey.”–Eileen’s Mom


“A Good Source of Fiber.”–U.S. Food and Drug Association


“Eileen looks so skinny in her author photo! How many layers of SPANX is she wearing?”–Alison Burke, Defenestration Contributor


“Ms. Lavelle’s book is in accordance with her probation.”–Carmen Ortiz, Massachusetts District Attorney


“It’s a book!”–Eileen’s Dad


“I don’t hate this.”– Genevieve Valentine


“I promise not to use this as a fly swatter. Maybe.”–Tanith Lee


“I like the refreshing sincerity of the male protagonist. However, I’d like him even more if he were made out of jelly beans.”–Andrew Kaye, Editor in Chief of Defenestration


“Ms. Lavelle is a valued customer at Price Club!”–Susie Kendrick, Store Manager


“This novel has been marked as size ‘irregular.'”–T.J.Maxx


“The emotion emitting from these pages is so glorious I will feel somewhat guilty when I use them as napkins.”–Christopher Eatman, Defenestration Columnist


“I enjoyed the zombie drag queen story I wrote in the margins of this book.”–Jonathan Harper, Defenestration Columnist



Eileen is hard at work on her novel “Hunt for the Raspberry Barbarian.” Look for it in imaginary bookstores nowhere!

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