I’ve been struggling with this one, which seems stupid.  I mean, isn’t this something that all writers should just know?  There was a reason you wrote the book in the first place, wasn’t there?  And yet:

  • I regularly go through phases of, “Everything I write is terrible.”
  • Therefore, why would anyone want to read the book?
  • The advice I’ve read about writing summaries/synopses of one’s book is geared toward presenting one’s plot in an entertaining way.  Plot.  Plot plot plot.
  • But nobody gives a damn about the plot, unless it’s some huge twist story, and then–irony of all ironies–you have to convince the reader to read your book without describing the big selling point.
  • I feel like shouting, I DON’T KNOW, IF IT’S THE KIND OF THING YOU LIKE, IT’S A GOOD TIME.
  • Isn’t that how you tell people about movies and books you like?  Tell them the plot?  Why isn’t that working as a copywriting technique?

Over the last few days, I posted about atmosphere.  I was mostly joking, but I think atmosphere is actually the answer.  People want to escape; part of what a fiction copywriter wants to do, I think, is show them where they’ll be escaping to.  And one of the easiest ways to do that is to describe the atmosphere.

I’ll be trying that next.  Reporting back soon.