What would you say about your book if given a chance?

I got an e-mail from the Director of Advertising and Promotion at one of my publishing houses last week. She said she had room for about 70-80 words after their blurb in the catalog…did I want to write something about my book? Obviously the correct answer to a question like that is, “Yes, I would love to do that” even though I had no clue what to say.

It’s one thing for the sales and marketing people to write stuff about your book, but when you’re writing it yourself, it seems like you really have to come up with something profound. I spent about as much time on that as I spent writing the whole book. Okay, that’s maybe a slight exaggeration. But it did take me a while.

I wasn’t sure if I should make it personal and talk about myself and why I wrote this book or if I should just talk about cyberbullying in general. So I sort of combined it:

“School can be a miserable place for a kid who’s being bullied. Most students who are bullied try and avoid their tormentors. But if you’re the victim of a cyberbully, you don’t know who your tormentors are, and you often can’t get away from them. They invade your home computer and your cell phone as well as your school. I wrote this book to bring awareness to this issue. Let’s stop ALL forms of bullying.”

That last sentence feels a little tacked on to me…probably because it was. But the truth is, I’m not sure I believe cyberbullying is any worse than any other kind of bullying. Bullying is bullying.

But maybe I say that because I value online communication so much in my own life? Writing can be a lonely profession, but hardly a day goes by that I’m not in communication with several online writing friends. My husband and I instant message each other all day long every day. In fact, if not for an early form of online communication, he and I never would’ve met.

It’s not computers that are the problem…it’s the bullying that’s a problem. I HATE that there’s this whole new way of bullying people…bullying via computer.

My teenagers live in a different world from the one I grew up in. We didn’t worry about cyber ANYTHING. My parents thought nothing of letting me hop on a bus in Minneapolis (three hours away from where I lived) when I was sixteen to go to a mall and meet some guy I met over the computer for the first time. Nowadays, that would be asking for trouble.

So many different directions I could have gone with that blurb…

As I prepare for three days of school visits next week (I have too much material, so every time I go somewhere I have to figure out what to leave out for THIS group), I realize I could talk for an hour JUST ON THIS ONE book!


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