One strategy that works well for both fiction and non-fiction descriptions is to start with the problem. For fiction, draw the reader into the problems the characters are facing. Your character’s problems will get the reader involved and invested into what happens next.
Here is an example of a compelling fiction description that starts with a problem:
“Pittsburgh Police Officer Kate O’Hern is on the trail of a killer targeting cops. Only problem, he’s already killed her once…”
This is from Borrowed Time from CJ Lyons.
The same tactic can work with non-fiction. Your reader may be looking to solve a problem or find a solution. Or they”ve already tried and failed as per this example, from Reprogram Your Subconscious – Use The Power Of Your Mind to Get Anything You Want.
“If you’ve tried and failed at: Losing weight, finding your ideal career, attracting your true love, being financially independent, or anything else, I want you to know that you aren’t lazy or stupid or a loser or born with bad luck. ”
A description should not be a cut-and-dried outline of the book, it should entice the reader to want to dig deeper and read more.
More Title Tips
- Focus on the first sentence. The job of the first sentence is to capture attention and get people to read the rest of the description. People who read the first sentence should feel hooked and sucked in to reading the rest of the description.
- Begin by looking at how other authors in your industry wrote their descriptions. Start to collect a swipe file – A collection of descriptions that you can reference to for inspiration. Reference your swipe file often. Never steal words, but don’t be afraid to steal ideas. If someone phrased a topic in a certain way or painted a picture in a certain way, don’t be afraid to take that writing style and make it your own.
- Come up with a few different ways to approach the description. Write several different descriptions, then ask friends which one is the most compelling. For example, you might have one description that factually describes the ebook and another description that paints a vivid picture with words.
Spend some time crafting your description as in many ways it is a sales page for your book.