It’s a relatively new source of amusement to me and one that is rapidly becoming a bit of a bug-bear. Now I know it’s pretty pointless getting worked-up about something over which you have no control, which makes it all the more frustrating when I come across promotions for books and play scripts that seem to have been thrown together with little or no thought to their content, their spelling or their overall appearance.
Now I freely hold my hand up and admit that I’m no angel when it comes to stuff like this…but if I do see I’ve made an error (or it gets pointed out to me – thank you Mrs B! – which is really the more likely) I’ll do my best to rectify it.
Because there are, you may have noticed, an absolute shed-load of books, writers, publishers and promotion-jockeys out there, all of them clamouring for our attention and hard-earned money; and I’m right up there with them. Which is why I am getting increasingly frustrated with what appears to be a very high number of would-be ‘bestsellers’ who can’t bloody well spell…or use the Queen’s English (and that includes the American version!)…or string a promo together without using a cliche. (I realise that certain things became cliches for a reason, but that’s no reason to perpetuate the myth!)
Resorting to funny little lines of exclamation marks, asterisks and swirly-things, all cunningly arranged in a totally meaningless pattern will NOT drag me in to read your blurb. Sorry. Nor will scantily-clad, bodice-ripped maidens; six-packed, open-shirted and bronzed torsos; weepingly beautiful sunsets or kittens wearing bonnets…or puppies in wellington boots.
And constantly bombarding every Facebook page, Twitter feed, Linkedin page, Pinterest Board, Blog, Vlog and MySpace (remember them?) page with your badly constructed tosh is pretty much guaranteed to get this potential customer reaching for the block button…oh that there were such a thing!
I know, I know…it is that much more difficult to come up with something enticing and original, but dear lord do we not, as writers, use our imaginations pretty much every day of the week? You do not need a bottomless budget, you can use the tools you already have at your fingertips. And not only are you doing your book a dis-service by allowing all this dross to appear under your name, you’re setting back the cause of every other writer struggling to get attention by tarring them with the same incredibly large brush you use on yourself. STOP IT! I found it amusing to begin with, but not any more; now, it’s just bloody irritating. Moderation in all things and, as the man said, it really is quality that will sell.
Rant over; soap-box away; cup of tea poured, deep breath aaaaand…relax. Now then, about those puppy pictures…