I was at the Sterling North Book Festival this weekend selling my wares and after people stared at my covers for a few seconds, they picked up a book and read the back, even if I was talking to them.
Claude and Mathew Kadish give us some ideas for the piece on the back of your book, or the description for you ebook online (same thing). I agree with all the suggestions made (though I think 5 paragraphs is too long – 3, maybe 4 is about right) and I like the person’s suggestion in the comment section – go to a bookstore or library, look online at the book descriptions/blurbs on the back of the book for best-selling titles in your genre and take notes. Imitation is the best form of flattery!
I also think the open lines need to hook the reader, as well. Think – a jazzed version of your ‘elevator speech’ about your book.
Here is their list: