The dreaded question - what is your story about

What’s your story about?

I think there is one question that really throws most authors.

The dreaded question, ‘What is your story about?”

I don’t know about you but I used to stumble through that with something like: “uh, it’s a suspense/thriller. This woman got kidnapped when she was a baby and now as an adult she’s trying to figure out the truth…”

the dreaded question, what is your story about

How do you keep it short and interesting?

I always felt unprepared.

It’s sort of interesting but not really. I always used to do was start with, I write suspense/thrillers or I write romance. I’ve learned not to do that, unless they ask that specifically. The reason I suggest that is because there are amazing books written in every genre but sometimes when you tell someone the genre, you may lose them. They may say, “Oh, I don’t read suspense/thrillers. I don’t read that kind of story.”

I know for me, if you asked if I read dystopian novels, I’d say no. But the truth is that I’ve probably read at least twenty in the last two years alone. They wouldn’t have been my choice to read but the authors did a very good job on selling me on what their story was about. I thoroughly enjoyed each one but I would not have sought out a dystopian type novel to read.

 

So what do you say, when someone asks, ‘What’s your story about?”

 

There are three elements that really make a fiction book blurb compelling – setup, capture, intrigue.

Setup is the underlying theme or problem throughout your story.

Capture is the heart of your story – where the protagonist is, where s/he wants to be, the hurdles s/he has to overcome, what brought them to this point, etc.

Intrigue is where you use the climax and ending to pique curiosity – you hint at who wins, who loses or what might happen…

So when someone asks what is my story about, I use the setup, which I tend to write as a bold statement, and then the intrigue. Anytime you are talking about your book, you want the other person to leave being curious. You want them to wonder what happens? What is going on for your protagonist? What will happen to your protagonist? Where does the story go? You want the other person to care.

So how do you use, Setup and Intrigue?

So the setup would look something like this:

     She was kidnapped not once but twice and now someone wants her dead…

and the intrigue would be something like this:

     Can she unravel 30 years of secrets, lies, and deceit, to find the truth?

When you put them together:

     She was kidnapped not once but twice and now someone wants her dead…

     Can she unravel 30 years of secrets, lies, and deceit, to find the truth?

“Setup and Intrigue work well
to grab attention and pique curiosity.”

Keep it short and punchy.

It’s short, simple, clearly states what is going on for the protagonist, and really it is telling the person that it is a suspense/thriller without actually saying that. It will grab people’s attention, even those who don’t read my genre.

So the next time someone asks you what your story is about, you will have a short, punchy comeback that will intrigue them.

I recently did an interview with three lovely ladies who are authors and have created a podcast, called – Self Publishing Authors Podcast or SPA Podcast for short. Each week they provide invaluable tips on writing and publishing. And they have a lot of fun doing it. Click on the button to listen to my conversation with them and how to answer the dreaded question,

“What is your Story About?”

To listen in, click the link below.

Did you get your 10 Question Cheat Sheet,
to help you write a compelling fiction book blurb?

Why not write a synopsis?

An easier way to write
a compelling
fiction book blurb.

What is so important about opposites?

Yin and Yang will make all the difference.

What will grab the reader?

A simple layout that is key.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

10 Question Cheat Sheet

Simplify the process

for Writing a Compelling

Fiction Book Blurb

Check your emails for a confirmation email.