Sunday, December 11, 2011

ROW80 Sunday Update - And the Blurb!

One of the things I worked on tonight was the blurb.

The premise of this book is in the quirky, unexpected characters. It's really hard to blurb that, since quirks work much better in the small details and context. So I've been fighting and wrestling and shoving and pushing at this for a while, but I think I finally have it.

I beg of anyone to give me feedback on anything unclear or ineffective. (You don't have to proof it. I will definitely be cleaning up the prose -- although I welcome any comments you might want to give.)

The Man Who Did Too Much, comic mystery suspense.

Logline Version:

In a small Michigan beach town, an eccentric movie buff and a compulsive secret agent join forces to solve a case of kidnapping and murder.

Long Blurb:

George Starling quit his job as a secret agent to take care of a traumatized woman he rescued. He has brought her home to her small Michigan town, where he spends his days taking care of her, bored but patient, waiting for her to be well enough to know whether she loves him or not.

When an old friend asks him to investigate a local lead in an international kidnapping, George reluctantly agrees to interview a witness.

That witness is Karla Marquette, a flaky local movie buff who seems to have little touch with reality. But George knows the instant he meets her that Karla has a genius for happiness. If he can only help Karla clear her friends of suspicion in this kidnapping and murder, perhaps she can help he and his girlfriend find the happiness that eludes them.

But the case is deeper than it seems, and soon George finds himself, and even his girlfriend, entangled in a deceptive plot. Can he shake loose, or will it be up to Karla to rescue them all?

The Man Who Did Too Much is a 95,000 word novel which combines classic mystery elements with comic suspense. Available in paperback, or in ebook format at Amazon and other major ebook retailers. In multiple formats at Smashwords.


Camille LaGuire is a Michigan writer of mystery and adventure stories. She has published fiction in magazines ranging from Cricket Magazine to Handheld Crime, to Marion Zimmer Bradley's Fantasy Magazine. Her work has been reprinted in educational materials and overseas, and her short fiction has been nominated for Derringer awards.

This book is not really about her, although she can be pretty flaky and out of touch when she wants to be.

Now on to the ROW80 update for the second half of this week:

Thursday Day 66 - 164 minutes. Wrote the Artisan Writer post, and also a couple of quick outline drafts for quite a few other posts.

Friday Day 67 - 0 minutes. Long exhausting day at work. Watched some videos, relaxed.

Saturday Day 68 - 200 minutes. A couple of good long craft posts -- but not for this week. One is partly about an indie friend who had a relevant experience with an agent, and I want to run it by her. The other just needs a little polish.

I spent most of my energy writing the blurb tonight, and my mind is in no shape to decide what I'm going to post later in the week. I just know there will be two posts other than updates this week (probably on Tuesday and Thursday.)

Classic Movies Watched

The Bridge On The River Kwai, Columbia 1957. This really is a classic, a great film of irony and characterization. Often quite tense, but not the grueling POW flick you might expect. I want to write up a post on the opening sequence. It's a wonderful set up for everything that comes after. It's not a "feel good" movie, but there is still a lot of joy in it.

Smart Money, WB 1931. A light gangster flick with Edward G. Robinson and Jimmy Cagney -- made before they broke into stardom with Little Caesar and The Public Enemy. The script is simply not up to their talent, but it's fun watching the star quality shine forth even with such dull material.

See you in the funny papers.


Juliana said...

Your new novel sounds very interesting!
Well done on the writing front!
Keep it up! Have a nice week ;)

Nadja Notariani said...

I absolutely was hooked by your blurb. Comedy - mystery - intrigue...I'm sold. I'll have to grab it up!
Best of luck!

Stacy Green said...

Great job on the blurb and logline. They're torture to write. Your blurb definitely hooked me:)

alberta ross said...

blurb works to intrigue - hard work well done

Bridge on River Kwai one of my favourite films and Cagney - well there are no words him and Bogart can watch them for ever:)

all the best for coming week

Tracy McCusker said...

I think the shorter blurb is slightly more effective (read: punchier) than the longer one. But both of them leave me interested and wanting to know more, so in that respect--they're equally successful. I think you put across the eccentricities well given the word constraints.

I'm really loving that cover, too!

Now that I've finished with my ROW80 goals, the rest of the year is going to be spent reading novels/books/comics. Hooray! I'm starting "Have Gun, Will Play" later this week (after finishing a run on craft/motivational books). Squee!

Anonymous said...

The cover is awesome! Love it. The logline gives a good punch, and the long blurb intrigues and reels them in enough to buy. I think they both work well.

The Daring Novelist said...

Alberta: Thanks! (And unfortunately, Cagney didn't really have that much of a part in Smart Money. Robinson got to chew some scenery, but Cagney basically got to stand around looking like he should be getting more scenery to chew.)

Tracy: yeah, I always like a shorter blurb better. My problem is that I can't seem to come up with anything in between this time. (Might be easier when it's an established series, though.)

Glad you liked the cover, and hope you enjoy HGWP!

Sharon: glad it all works for you. I'm really happy with the covers for this series.

Anonymous said...

Interesting! I would name the potential girlfriend.

"George Starling quit his job as a secret agent to take care of (name of woman), a (heiress he rescued from pirates, or whatever). He dotes on her in her small Michigan townhouse, waiting for the day she’ll realize she loves him."

Good luck!

The Daring Novelist said...

Good thoughts, CM.

I'm always a little reluctant to name too many characters in a synopsis, but I think in this case it'll be fine.

Kim Switzer said...

I really like the blurbs and would definitely at least read the first pages to check out the book.

My favorite part is the line from the logline: "compulsive secret agent." This makes me chuckle just thinking about what it could mean because he could either be a secret agent who is compulsive about things in his life or someone who can't stop himself from doing secret agent stuff. Or both. I love phrases like this. :)

The Daring Novelist said...

Ha ha!

Kim, I was wondering if anyone would comment on that. And yes, the answer is, indeed, that he is compulsive about being an action hero. Even when the task is not an action hero kind of thing.

He is, after all "The Man Who Did Too Much."