Today's is a self-published book from Beryl Kingston, who has previously had many books successfully published. She also has another publishing deal. But today we are looking at the pitch Beryl sent me.
The Internet Revolutionary by Beryl Kingston - described by the author as "modern morality tale", which does not make me want to read it! Sorry... But that may not matter because all readers are different and many people would not be put off by this. I'm just saying what I thought. When we pitch a book, we need to think of our intended readers, not readers who wouldn't read our sort of book; however, it's worth considering that we might unnecessarily put some people off simply by the way we describe a book, and those people might otherwise have wanted to read it. A good book can lose readers if the pitch is wrong.
OK, I'm going to hold my hands up and say that, although there are some intriguing elements, I'm confused. The first sentence leaves me in a ball of ignorance as to what this is about and what sort of story it is. The second sentence contains a couple of phrases that feel a little clichéd ("life and loves" and "tough inner city comprehensive" - you might decide to keep them, but I think they could be improved) but my main crit is that the point about constant exams, while certainly interesting in real life, doesn't sound compelling as a driving force in this context: it lacks emotional power. The third sentence contains a punctuation error which renders the meaning ambiguous. I've no idea whether Octavia Smith is fictional or not. And by the end, I still don't know what kind of revolution this is going to be.
The final sentence reads oddly after the previous one, which is incongruously light compared to the word "revolution". And if the stage is set at the end, I find that confusing, too, in terms of telling me how this story arc works. I'd rather have the revolution in the book, not at the end. (Which is maybe what happens in fact - perhaps it's only the pitch which makes it sound as though that's the end.)
The Internet Revolutionary sounds like a complex book, rich with possibilities, and those are obviously harder books to pitch. Somehow, as writers of such books, we have to find a way to get at the core and make it clear.
Beryl is a multi-published writer, so I'm sure the story itself is powerful and well-written, but this pitch doesn't do it justice in that case, I feel. Maybe everyone will disagree with me, but I think that a better pitch would create even more sales.
Any helpful comments, anyone? Here is the link to the book on Amazon. And thank you, Beryl, for sending me your pitch for the blog.