Friday, May 11, 2012

Gag-reflex Expressions for your Blurb/Query/Synopsis

We Indies have a lot of obstacles to overcome. Without professionals guiding us, we can be our severest enemy. (See how I avoided the cliché?)
You avoid telling, worn out expressions, and clichés for ninety-thousand words…don't put them in the key element that highlights your work! 
I've started taking note of some of the expressions I find in blurbs that immediately make me go to the next book. With this list, which I intend to expand upon, I hope I share some toe-stubbers that you can avoid.
1. Turned upside down
2. A storm is brewing
3. Future of mankind at stake
4. Revenge is sweet
5. A book you can't put down
6. Best work yet
7. Great read
8. Watches in torment
9. In a world governed
10. Life back together
11. Set in
12. Story of
13. A harrowing account
14. Change his life forever
15. Pick up the pieces
16. Memories of her past
17. Past catches up
To Be Continued. 
-R. Mac Wheeler
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  1. I'm put off if the blurb mentions humour - "a bitter-sweet tale of tremendous heartbreak and much death, told with humour..."* Next!

    * completely fictional blurb!

  2. That's a great list - they really are turn offs!

  3. Aaarrgh! I'm going through every query letter I've ever written. I don't know whether to thank you or shake a fist!
    : )