Author Topic: military thriller blurb feedback  (Read 502 times)  

Offline Gregg Bell

  • Status: Arthur C Clarke
  • *****
  • Posts: 2837
  • Gender: Male
  • Itasca, Illinois
    • View Profile
    • greggbell.net
military thriller blurb feedback
« on: July 14, 2020, 04:59:18 pm »
For a novel titled Navy SEAL Everglades Rescue. I've posted about this blurb before but the book, cover and blurb are so different from then, I figured I'd make a new post. Any feedback is welcome. Thank you.

Please see Reply #14 for the latest version of the blurb. Thanks.

Former Navy SEALs Shelby Ryder and Earl Bernstein have been given one last chance to regain their SEAL status. The US president's seven-year-old nephew has been kidnapped, and if they can get him back, the president assures them he'll restore their coveted SEAL trident pins. But something's not right. The president could send anyone to rescue the boy, but he insists on Shelby and Earl because they have no connection to the government (and him). In fact, he's adamant that the entire mission be totally covert. Shelby and Earl are suspicious but also desperate to be SEALs again, so they accept his offer.

The president's nephew is being held somewhere deep in the Florida Everglades, and Shelby and Earl brave devastating heat, alligators and swarms of mosquitoes in an effort to find him. They're making steady progress, but as their search closes in on the boy, they start receiving misleading intel from Washington. Then an airboat they were meant to be on explodes in a fireball. Are they being played?

The president and government are supposed to be the good guys, right?

« Last Edit: July 22, 2020, 04:15:42 pm by Gregg Bell »

"When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

KBoards.com

  • Advertisement
  • ***

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #1 on: July 15, 2020, 06:28:03 pm »
    Got a new version.

    Outcast former Navy SEALs Shelby Ryder and Earl Bernstein have been given one last chance to regain their SEAL status. The US president's seven-year-old nephew has been kidnapped, and if they can rescue the boy, the president assures them he'll restore their coveted SEAL trident pins. But something's not right. The president's insisting that the entire mission be totally covert. Support people won't reveal their real names. Many seem more mercenary than military. Shelby and Earl are suspicious, but desperate to be SEALs again, they accept his offer.

    The president's nephew is being held somewhere deep in the Florida Everglades, and the pair brave devastating heat, alligators and swarms of mosquitoes in an effort to find him. They're making steady progress, but as their search closes in, they start receiving sketchy, then deliberately misleading intel from Washington. Still, they're committed to rescuing the boy. But when an airboat they were meant to be on explodes in a fireball, they suddenly find themselves in the middle of a life and death fight that they never started but are determined to finish.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Offline Kathy Dee

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 757
    • Gender: Female
      • View Profile
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #2 on: July 16, 2020, 01:29:07 am »
    This ...

    The US president's seven-year-old nephew has been kidnapped

    is a much stronger opening than this ...

    Outcast former Navy SEALs Shelby Ryder and Earl Bernstein have been given one last chance to regain their SEAL status.

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #3 on: July 16, 2020, 03:47:18 pm »
    This ...

    The US president's seven-year-old nephew has been kidnapped

    is a much stronger opening than this ...

    Outcast former Navy SEALs Shelby Ryder and Earl Bernstein have been given one last chance to regain their SEAL status.

    Thanks Kathy. I think you're right. I'll give it a try.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #4 on: July 16, 2020, 03:50:31 pm »
    The US president's seven-year-old nephew has been kidnapped. The nation is horrified, but the crime turns out to be just the break pariah former Navy SEALs Shelby Ryder and Earl Bernstein needed. If they're able to rescue the boy, the president assures them he'll restore their coveted SEAL trident pins. The former SEALs jump at the chance. But something's not right. The president's insisting that the entire mission be totally covert. Support people won't reveal their real names. Many seem more mercenary than military. Shelby and Earl are suspicious, but they're desperate to be SEALs again.

    The president's nephew is being held somewhere deep in the Florida Everglades, and the pair brave devastating heat, alligators and swarms of mosquitoes in an effort to find him. They're making steady progress, but as their search closes in, they start receiving sketchy, then deliberately misleading intel from Washington. Still, they're committed to rescuing the boy. But when an airboat they were meant to be on explodes in a fireball, they suddenly find themselves in the middle of a life and death fight that they never started but are determined to finish.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Online Gareth K Pengelly

    • Status: Jane Austen
    • ***
    • Posts: 459
    • Gender: Male
    • Leicestershire, UK
      • View Profile
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #5 on: July 16, 2020, 04:10:46 pm »
    I personally think you could probably ditch the entire second paragraph.

    The first paragraph is very hooky without giving too much away, which is exactly what you want. Whereas the second paragraph ends up revealing too much. Less is more when it comes to blurbs, so I've been told.

    I'd take the snippet about the Everglades and just change it up and add it to the end of the first paragraph.

    "And so, into the humid depths of the Florida Everglades they go, to start a mission they were maybe never intended to survive..." Or something along those lines.



    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #6 on: July 16, 2020, 04:51:16 pm »
    I personally think you could probably ditch the entire second paragraph.

    The first paragraph is very hooky without giving too much away, which is exactly what you want. Whereas the second paragraph ends up revealing too much. Less is more when it comes to blurbs, so I've been told.

    I'd take the snippet about the Everglades and just change it up and add it to the end of the first paragraph.

    "And so, into the humid depths of the Florida Everglades they go, to start a mission they were maybe never intended to survive..." Or something along those lines.


    Thanks very much, Gareth! That will make the blurb quite short but I think you're advice is brilliant. I'll post a new version.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #7 on: July 16, 2020, 04:53:05 pm »
    The US president's seven-year-old nephew has been kidnapped. The nation is horrified, but the crime turns out to be just the break pariah former Navy SEALs Shelby Ryder and Earl Bernstein need. If they're able to rescue the boy, who's being held somewhere in the Florida Everglades, the president assures them he'll restore their coveted SEAL trident pins. The former SEALs jump at the chance. But something's not right. The president's insisting that the entire mission be totally covert. Support people won't reveal their real names. Many seem more mercenary than military. Shelby and Earl are suspicious, but they're desperate to be SEALs again. And so, into the depths of the humid Florida Everglades they go, to start a mission they were maybe never intended to survive.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Offline TromboneAl

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3942
    • Name IRL: Al Macy
      • View Profile
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #8 on: July 17, 2020, 07:34:26 am »
    Hi, Gregg,

    Here's my version to give you some ideas:

    Libbie Hawker's formula:

    A character , who
    Wants something, but
    Something stands in his way, so he
    Struggles against that force, and
    Something important is at stake

    Disgraced Navy SEAL Shelby Ryder isn't doing well since her forced retirement. Ever since blah blah she's been blah blah. She needs a way to prove blah blah.

    Her chance comes when the president's young nephew, Marty, is kidnapped. The race is on to rescue him before [something], and no one has Shelby's ability to blah blah.

    But the kidnappers are smart. They've hidden Marty somewhere in the Everglades, and [another big problem]. The president calls on Shelby, and promises to restore her status if she can return Marty to the White House. But Shelby will be on her own. Because of blah blah, the president insists that the entire mission happen below the radar.

    Worse, they learn that blah blah. And the clock is ticking.

    If Shelby can't rescue the boy, then [terrible things affecting the entire country].


    You could add Earl in, but I'm not sure that's necessary. I know what you mean by "restore their pins" but it's ambiguous.

    HTH!
     
    Al Macy | Web Site

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #9 on: July 17, 2020, 02:10:42 pm »
    Hi, Gregg,

    Here's my version to give you some ideas:

    Libbie Hawker's formula:

    A character , who
    Wants something, but
    Something stands in his way, so he
    Struggles against that force, and
    Something important is at stake

    Disgraced Navy SEAL Shelby Ryder isn't doing well since her forced retirement. Ever since blah blah she's been blah blah. She needs a way to prove blah blah.

    Her chance comes when the president's young nephew, Marty, is kidnapped. The race is on to rescue him before [something], and no one has Shelby's ability to blah blah.

    But the kidnappers are smart. They've hidden Marty somewhere in the Everglades, and [another big problem]. The president calls on Shelby, and promises to restore her status if she can return Marty to the White House. But Shelby will be on her own. Because of blah blah, the president insists that the entire mission happen below the radar.

    Worse, they learn that blah blah. And the clock is ticking.

    If Shelby can't rescue the boy, then [terrible things affecting the entire country].


    You could add Earl in, but I'm not sure that's necessary. I know what you mean by "restore their pins" but it's ambiguous.

    HTH!

    Thanks a lot, Al. I'm going to give Libbie's formula a shot. But in the current blurb it's "restore their coveted SEAL trident pins." I would think that would be enough but it won't hurt to make sure and add some clarity. I'll be back.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #10 on: July 21, 2020, 12:55:01 pm »
    Latest version.

    Disgraced former Navy SEAL Shelby Ryder, a Kansas farm girl, has a big chip on her shoulder. Battling grueling training and sexual harassment, she'd fought her way to being a Navy SEAL only to be hoodwinked and hung out to dry by the very government she'd sworn to defend. She'll do anything to get her trident pin back to prove her mettle, but bureaucratic bungling and the president himself have blocked her path until a failed assassination attempt on the president's life triggers a bizarre chain of events. The president's seven-year-old nephew has been kidnapped and is being held somewhere in the Florida Everglades. The president makes Shelby and her former partner Earl Bernstein a proposition--get the boy back safely and they'll get their pins. 

    But something's not right. The president could send massive forces for the boy, but instead he's sending them. He's also insisting that the entire mission be totally covert. Support people won't reveal their real names. Many seem more mercenary than military. Shelby and Earl are suspicious but they're desperate to be SEALs again.

    And so into the depths of the humid, alligator-infested Everglades they go, to start a mission they were never intended to survive.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Online Gareth K Pengelly

    • Status: Jane Austen
    • ***
    • Posts: 459
    • Gender: Male
    • Leicestershire, UK
      • View Profile
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #11 on: July 21, 2020, 01:00:06 pm »
    Perfect

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #12 on: July 21, 2020, 01:02:10 pm »

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    Offline TromboneAl

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3942
    • Name IRL: Al Macy
      • View Profile
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #13 on: July 22, 2020, 08:05:21 am »
    Yes, that's good. Two changes I'd make would be to break up the big paragraph, and up the stakes. Well, I couldn't resist making some more changes.

    Something like this:

    Disgraced Navy SEAL Shelby Ryder has a chip on her shoulder.

    Battling grueling training and sexual harassment, she fought her way to being a Navy SEAL only to be hoodwinked and hung out to dry by the very government she'd sworn to defend. She'll do anything to prove her mettle and get her trident pin back, but the president himself is blocking her path. That is, until his seven-year-old nephew is kidnapped. The president makes Shelby and her former partner Earl Bernstein a deal--get the kid back safely and they'll get their pins back.

    But something's not right. The president could send massive forces for the boy, but instead he's sending them. He's also insisting that the mission be covert. Support people won't reveal their real names. Many seem more mercenary than military. Shelby and Earl are suspicious that the president has set them up to fail, but they're desperate to be SEALs again.

    And so they embark on a mission they were never intended to survive. If they don't succeed, they, and the kid, will be alligator food.


    See if you think "chip" is stronger than "big chip." I took out some other modifiers, too. "Farm girl" important enough to keep? Re the mettle thing, note the change in order.
    « Last Edit: July 22, 2020, 08:08:05 am by TromboneAl »
     
    Al Macy | Web Site

    Offline Gregg Bell

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2837
    • Gender: Male
    • Itasca, Illinois
      • View Profile
      • greggbell.net
    Re: military thriller blurb feedback
    « Reply #14 on: July 22, 2020, 04:04:37 pm »
    Thanks a lot, Al. I had to shift some things around. Some friends pointed out why wouldn't the mission be covert? Stuff like that. And I'm not so sure (although it reads great) about "...the president himself is blocking her path. That is, until his seven-year-old nephew is kidnapped." In my book, the president is in the midst of returning their trident pins when an assassination attempt on him occurs. That's when his nephew is kidnapped (as part of a concerted campaign against the president's allies). The assassination attempt has the president reconsidering his returning the pins, and it's only then that he makes his offer about rescuing his nephew. I wonder if I'm veering too far from the actual story?

    And I love that last line. I think the implication is clear that the boy's life will be lost, especially mentioning him in the last line of the second paragraph.



    Disgraced former Navy SEAL Shelby Ryder has a chip on her shoulder.

    Battling grueling training and sexual harassment, she'd fought her way to being a Navy SEAL only to be hung out to dry by the very government she'd sworn to defend. She'll do anything to get her trident pin back to prove her mettle, but the president himself is blocking her path. That is, until his seven-year-old nephew is kidnapped. The president makes Shelby and her former partner Earl Bernstein a deal--get the kid back safely and he'll return their pins.

    But something's not right. The president could send massive forces for the boy, but instead he's sending them. Key contacts don't show. Others won't reveal their real names. Some seem more mercenary than military. Shelby and Earl are suspicious, but they're desperate to be SEALs again, and there's an innocent little boy out there in need of rescue.

    And so, into the depths of the humid, alligator-infested Everglades they go, to start a mission they were never intended to survive.

    "When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong." Oscar Wilde
    Gregg Bell | Website | Amazon author page | Blog | Twitter | Google+ | Facebook

    KBoards.com

    • Advertisement
    • ***