Yaldā Advent Calendar 2012 – Day 10 – “The Written” Gift-away

roman-letters_6The weekend over, it’s time to go back to the advent calendar. Today is another gift of giving 🙂

I have already mentioned the few people who helped me early on in my career. Ben Galley is another one of those; a relentless pursuer of rights of self-published authors, a fantasy writer himself, Ben was kind enough to give me cover blurbs for two of the books, and host one of my first guest blog posts ever.

I’m sponsoring a gift-away of one of his books today: his debut fantasy novel, The Written.

You need to have an Amazon account and be able to receive gifts. The gift-away will run for a week, and then I will choose the winner at random. All you need to do is fill out this form:

thewritten2_2His name is Farden.

They whisper that he’s dangerous.

Dangerous is only the half of it.

Something has gone missing from the libraries of Arfell. Something very old, and something very powerful. Five scholars are now dead, a country is once again on the brink of war, and the magick council is running out of time and options.

Entangled in a web of lies and politics and dragged halfway across icy Emaneska and back, Farden must unearth a secret even he doesn’t want to know, a secret that will shake the foundations of his world. Dragons, drugs, magick, death, and the deepest of betrayals await.

Breathtakingly vast, chillingly dark, brooding and dangerous, The Written will leave you impatiently waiting for the next adventure…

Building a Blurb

Today I have a guest post by Ben Galley

A good cover can make a reader swipe it off the shelf, but a bad blurb can have it thrown  straight back again.

There are two sides to every book cover, and I don’t just mean the front and the back. I mean the art and the words, the blurb. The combination of the two is a bit like those infamous “Golf Sale” signs you see being held aloft in the centre of every busy shopping hub across the lands. The signs are usually painted a luminous, ungodly yellow to grab your attention. You look up, squinting at the brightness, mystified and curious, until you see the words splayed across its cardboard face – “Golf Sale!” I do not golf. I have no need for a golf sale. I walk on, sign ignored.

Book covers are like these signs. The cover attracts the browser’s eyes, whether by art or by colour or both, and leaves the blurb to handle the task of the information. It’s a symbiotic relationship, one that needs to be perfectly balanced. It’s an important one too. Getting it right can mean the difference between your books being taken home or downloaded, or being snubbed.

There are three rules to writing a blurb:

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