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message 1: by Robert (new)

Robert Michael | 26 comments I'm having a hard time finding beta's for my novel, so I'm interested to see if it's the blurb that I've been putting out. I'm open to thoughts. Thanks!




The Dalia and the Dilemma


Sir is a negotiator of the War Trade by day and runs an escort service by night.
When one of his deals goes wrong with South American general Gomez,
he must turn to an ancient evil, The Dalia, for assistance.
Tasked to protect him on his mission is Lovely, a mercenary who warms, then ignites his heart.
But the General has unleashed an experimental virus that threatens civilization.
With the end of the world looming, the two must venture into the depths of a hidden society with dark secrets and vast knowledge. His failure means the end of his life and that of his true love.

Can he Master his destiny or is his fate already written?

http://iamsiriammasterinfo.tumblr.com...


message 2: by Mocha (last edited Oct 24, 2014 04:29PM) (new)

Mocha Pennington | 55 comments I get more beta readers by commenting in their post than having them comment on mine. Actually, no beta readers have commented in my post lol.
Blurbs are very tricky; they have to be short, give detailed information, be intriguing, AND display your writing style all at the same time.

"When one of his deals goes wrong..." that's vague. I would suggest you explain that a little more, using as few words as possible, of course.
"He must turn to an ancient evil, The Dalia, for assistance". We don't know what that is. I would give a BRIEF description of it.
"But the General has unleashed..." What? That came out of nowhere. Why did he unleash this virus? Was it because of the deal? Explain.
"With the end of the world looming..." I think your blurb should be written around this sentence. It's the attention grabber. I would also give the hidden society a name.

I do hope I helped a bit. :)

Mocha


message 3: by Jim (new)

Jim Carnicelli (jimcarnicelli) | 71 comments I like the feeling, but my biggest criticism is that it leads in with an unfamiliar term. What is "the War Trade"? Sounds like an illegal weapons smuggling operation. Perhaps a few extra words could illuminate this, as with, "Sir negotiates weapons deals for the War Trade by day ..."

You achieved this by modifying "The Dalia" with "an ancient evil" as a good example.

I like your sentence establishing Sir's love interest briefly but piquantly.

Some of the capitalization of many names is throwing me. Typically, if someone's name is prefixed with "the", you capitalize it, like "The General". If that's not his name, just go with "the general". I'm guessing you're talking about general Gomez, referenced earlier, which means it should be "the general" later.

Same goes for "The War Trade". Either lose or capitalize "the".

The last sentence of the second paragraph is okay but perhaps could stand to fit a more familiar if-then pattern instead of X-means-Y. For example, "Certain death awaits Sir and his true love if he fails."

Consider putting a line break before "With the end of the world looming" and merging your standalone trailing sentence in with that paragraph.

Good start. My points are small ones.


message 4: by Robert (new)

Robert Michael | 26 comments Thanks guys,

So I took your suggestions into consideration and here's what I've come up with.



By day, Sir is an agent in The War Trade, a Black Market organization.
By night, he runs an escort service.
When a power shift occurs with South American general Gomez he must turn to the Dalia, an ancient evil and the inspiration behind the works of the Marquis De Sade, for assistance.
Tasked to protect him on his mission is Lovely, a mercenary who warms, then ignites his heart.
But before he can get to South America, Gomez declares war on the world, unleashing an experimental virus with the intent to spark the apocalypse.

With the end of the world looming, the two must explore the depths of the Black Market, revealing truths long hidden from civilization.

Failure means the end of his world, and true love.

Can he Master his destiny or is his fate already written?



I do feel however, this may be a bit long of a blurb to read, but being inexperienced in writing these, I'm unsure. My concern is that I'm revealing too much, but then again, that may be the point.

I've come up with a shorter version that I think works, but I'm still on the fence. Thoughts?


Sir works for a private firm that functions deep within the black market.
In his spare time, he runs an escort service.
After years of uneasy peace, war is coming and he must stop it.
Tasked to protect him is Lovely, a mercenary that ignites his heart with the kiss of death.

Looming war and the release of a deadly virus hangs over his head, as his choices determine whether or not he can protect Lovely from the apocalypse. To Master his destiny he must write his fate, and find the cure, so they may have tomorrow.


message 5: by Mocha (last edited Oct 25, 2014 12:16PM) (new)

Mocha Pennington | 55 comments It seems Sir only cares about saving Lovely and could care less about the rest of the world. LOL. I like the first version of the revision better than the shorter one. I don't think it reveals too much, it leaves the reader intrigued and want to read it, in my opinion.
Blurbs are very hard to write; it's said that they are more difficult than the novel. I worked on mine for a year, actually. Not continuously, of course. It's a good idea to let the blurb sit for a week or two then return to it, you'll find minor things to tweak, then let it sit for another week before revising it.
The link below helped me a lot. I suggest reading all of the content. It's not boring at all, the blog creator is a successful literary agent who has a wonderful sense of humor when critiquing quires/blurbs. I think your blurb still needs a little tweaking. Don't get discouraged.

http://queryshark.blogspot.com/

I hope this helps you as much as it helped me. Good luck and do post the revision, I'd like to see it. :D

Mocha


message 6: by Jim (new)

Jim Carnicelli (jimcarnicelli) | 71 comments I think I like the shorter version better. People usually don't need to see proper names for organizations, countries, etc. in a blurb.

Regarding format, I would lose the new-lines after each sentence. Here's a minor revision for format and grammar with no word changes:

----

Sir works for a private firm that functions deep within a black market. He runs an escort service in his spare time. After years of uneasy peace, war is coming and he must stop it. Lovely, a mercenary tasked with protecting him, ignites his heart with the kiss of death.

Looming war and the release of a deadly virus hangs over his head. His choices will determine whether he can protect Lovely from the apocalypse. To master his destiny, he must write his fate and find the cure so they may have tomorrow.


message 7: by Robert (new)

Robert Michael | 26 comments @Mocha - In the book, the world becomes less important once he realizes there's nothing that can be done to stop it. Plus, he's in love haha. Thanks! I'll take a look. Yea the blurb has become the bane of my existence for some time now, but I'll take your advice and leave it for a little while, then come back and let you guys know what I came up with.

@Jim - Wow! You're really good at that haha! I wrote the novel with a minimalistic approach, so the shorter version matches the style very well.

I think I do have to sit on it and see if I can catch a beta with one of them lol.


message 8: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 129 comments Jim's revision is good. I'd run with it. now I wanna read the book -_-


message 9: by Robert (new)

Robert Michael | 26 comments @ K.P. - I'm always looking for Beta readers ;-)


message 10: by K.P. (new)

K.P. Merriweather (kp_merriweather) | 129 comments hit me up @ kpmerriweather@ Gmail.com


message 11: by Lena (new)

Lena | 172 comments Mod
Success! Lol...

I agree, a shorter blurb and less synopsis. According to the agent blogs (blurb=query letter, basically) all you really need to put in is the inciting incident that gets the story rolling (think first 30 pgs). So if some of your blurb gives away too much, it's probably bc you're trying to sum up the entire plot. But you just want to draw the readers in. Give them the horse, not the cart!


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