What is Your Book About?

October 14, 2010

Photo by eclecticlibrarian

After reading the article ‘Never talk about your book’ you are now faced with the problem of how to answer the question ‘What’s your book about?’ without endangering your novel in the process. Your instinctive reaction will depend on your natural conversational style and whether you are an extrovert or introvert.

Admittedly no one fits in a nice little box; some outrageous extroverts clam up at the mention of their creative work and suffer from I’m not a real writer syndrome. Likewise those who consider themselves a reserved character may relish the chance to discuss their next masterpiece. Either way, please heed our previous warning so that you keep the creative energy both on the page and in your head.

Here are three answers that you can adapt

  • The Stopper

“I don’t really like to talk about it” will suffice and may add a layer of intrigue to your character. However it will stop the conversation dead and you might drop off the invitation list for the next party.

  • The Seller

Turn your thinking around and see the interrogator as a potential buyer for your novel that you want to leave with a taste for more. A snappier answer such as; “It’s a brilliant story, I can’t wait for it to be finished” with an added “you’ll have to wait to find out” will create a positive vibe about your work. It will also lift your mood as you imagine the publication date and a long line of pre-orders.

  • The Clever

Ideally you should come up with something that sells, creates interest and leaves them with a taste for more but without giving away the specifics; in essence A Tag Line. If you would help creating one that suits your novel, then click here.

All three answers are easily adaptable so test a few out to find the right words that suit you. It might be that you revert to a stopper after using tag line but remember never be pressurised to reveal more than you want to. It is hard to do justice to your characters or aptly explain a subplot without becoming lost in a web of words; hence why it is a book and not a Powerpoint presentation in the first place.

After testing out your answers and having perfected your tag line you will become wonderfully equipped to deal with the question “What is your book about?” It will no longer be an irritating and you may even find yourself looking forward to being asked – even if it’s just to use some of your witty responses!

If you’d like some practice answering the question ‘What is your book about’, try leaving your brilliantly crafted response in the comment box below… we’d love to hear from you!

© Kate Marillat 2010

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4 Responses to What is Your Book About?

  1. Irene Marillat
    October 26, 2010 at 10:40 am

    Thoughtful and positive approach for book discussions and so much more.

  2. Rosemary Dun
    October 27, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Hi there, I’m sure it’s just a blip but I tried to click on the click here for a tag line, and nothing …
    great site, by the way xx

  3. Ros Barber
    October 27, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    Hi Rosemary,
    Thank you for pointing out the glitch! All fixed now. Really glad you like the site! x


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