One-Minute Book Reviews

February 27, 2023

What Should You Say On The Cover Of Your Novel?

Filed under: Books — 1minutebookreviewswordpresscom @ 10:56 am
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You have the title and, if you’re lucky, a few lines of advance praise from readers. But what else should go on the cover of your book (or the flaps or dust jacket if it’s a hardcover)?

The longtime Penguin Books copywriter Louise Willder scatters tips for writing fiction and nonfiction book-cover copy throughout her new Blurb Your Enthusiasm!: An A–Z of Literary Persuasion (Oneworld Publications, 2022).

Good cover copy, she says, has a tight narrative structure with a clear beginning, middle, and end. It tells a mini-story that makes an emotional impact.

That storytelling begins with an opening hook that makes people want to read more. You’ll find an example of a strong first line for the cover copy of a novel on the Virago edition of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale: “The Republic of Gilead allows Offred only one function: to breed.”

Want more tips on what to say on the cover of your book? And a few about the things you should never say? You’ll find them in my article:

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