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  1. #1
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    Smile Looking for a little help with my Science Fiction sysnopsis/blurb

    After spending several months attempting to interest an agent, I'm close to self-publishing my science fiction story. Please let me know what you think of the following. Besides the normal suggestions, please tell me if you think this blurb provides enough (clear) information about my story. I intend on using this a the blurb on Amazon, etc. Thank you in advance.

    THE YESTERDAY TREE SYNOPSIS

    An insignificant department at the NSA is tasked with the initial investigation of what is potentially manís first encounter with extraterrestrial life. Long-standing skepticism and significant budget constraints allow for only a small team, mostly from the private sector, to lead the initial investigation. A preliminary examination of the small spacecraft yields conflicting results. The team quickly devolves into three camps, each supporting a different theory about the mysterious craft. The military representative advances the idea that the ship is nothing more than a vehicle from a hostile country, bent on reviving the cold war. Other members of the NSA team believe this craft represents an experiment in advanced technology being developed by a mysterious American company. The third group holds fast to the idea that the craft is truly otherworldly.

    As the three factions argue their positions a group, maintaining they are college students, is discovered in a nearby abandoned mine. They claim to be on a on a field trip investigating the local archeology of the area. A series of inconsistencies in their story compel the students to reveal their amazing origin and purpose. The leader of the student group maintains they are from five hundred years in the future, charged with a unique task that will save the lives of countless millions in their own time. Instead of ending the NSA groupís conflict, the information is used to support their diverse hypotheses. Their arguments ultimately turn to opposing theories regarding the possibility of time travel. The military NSA team member is infuriated by the story, believing it is nothing more than an outrageous fantasy.

    Another NSA team member, that is a specialist in computer technology, begins working with the student group in an effort to uncover their true purpose. He discovers they are engaged in exactly what they claim is their primary task. They are influencing people to create what will become a worldwide genealogy database. Scientists, in the 26th century, will use this data to track those carrying a group of mutated genes and alter their DNA to prevent the fatal illness from occurring.

    One member of the group from the future is determined to return to his own time, an objective that is thought impossible. A member of the NSA team discovers his plan and convinces him to take her with him. At the conclusion of their trip, scientists of the 26th century are told that, with the help of a 21st century man, the team has been successful Ė millions of lives are spared and the secret of the amazing mission remains intact.



  2. #2
    Senior Member John Oberon's Avatar
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    I like those blurbs a heckuva lot shorter. How about something like this:

    A small team from the NSA investigates the controversial discovery of a small spacecraft. Team opinions on its origins fall into three camps: a hostile country, a mysterious American company, or an alien civilization.

    As the three factions argue, a group of college students is brought to their attention. The students claim they are from five hundred years in the future and on a mission to save millions of lives. They plan to influence people to create what will become a worldwide genealogy database. 26th century scientists will use this data to track those carrying a group of mutated genes and alter their DNA to prevent a future devastating plague.

    One of the students from the future is determined to return to his own time even though it's thought to be impossible, and an NSA team member convinces him to take her with him.

    Can they return to the future? Will the students be successful in their mission, or is humanity doomed to die? Find out in The Yesterday Tree.

  3. #3
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    Cool thanks!

    Hi John,

    Boy, I wish I had your talent for finding the core of what I want to say!

    If you don't mind, with a few minor modifications, I'm going to use what you've managed to distill into exactly what my book blurb should be.

    Thanks for your help,

    Ken

  4. #4
    Rogue Mutt
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    LOL, yeah, a "blurb" is just a couple of sentences, not a whole freaking page. Even John's is way too long. This is probably why you never interested an agent. And really you shouldn't put spoilers in your own blurb. Kind of makes it pointless for people to buy the book then. I wouldn't even mention the time travel thing; leave that as a surprise for anyone who reads the book. Here's what I would do:

    When a mysterious object crashes (wherever), it may prove to be humanity's first encounter with alien life. But what is it? And where does it come from? Three teams of experts rush towards the scene to investigate. Whoever gets there first can alter the fate of humanity for centuries to come. Will the object become a blessing or a curse?

  5. #5
    Senior Member John Oberon's Avatar
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    Oh, I don't know. I could see that much writing on the back of a book, Mutt. I think yours is too short. Maybe somewhere in between...

  6. #6
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    updated blurb

    I've updated my blurb - please let me know if you think this version is any better. Thanks in advance

    Two groups face off at a distance of only a few yards but also five hundred years. One, led by a senior NSA operative, is intent on investigating what may be Earth’s first genuine alien encounter. The second, a group of young people on a mission to save humankind. In the 26th century, descendants of Earth have settled twenty-three worlds. A genetic disease, potentially claiming millions of lives, confounds medical science. Facing the impossible task of tracking the illness, they must discover the source and eradicate it before more die. Anomalous strands of defective DNA are found to be the culprit and a unique plan is hatched to track them. A group of genetically engineered people is sent to the 21st century in order to enhance the development of a worldwide genealogical database. Once in the hands of 26th century doctors, it will be used to track down people carrying the defective DNA and replace it, thus preventing the epidemic from taking countless lives. Knowing they are on a one-way trip, the young team sets out to generate a wave in the very fabric of space-time that will carry the necessary information into the future. But some on the NSA team are determined to stop them. Persuaded by the military member of the team, they are convinced the bizarre story is nothing more than a preposterous fabrication meant to obscure their true purpose on Earth: to infiltrate secure government installations for some sinister purpose. But other members of the NSA team believe the time travelers’ story and feel obliged to help save the future. While exploring the possibility of time travel, The Yesterday Tree follows the divergent personalities of both teams as they strive to reach what to each of them is a goal of supreme importance.
    Last edited by Kenneth Teicher; 12-16-2014 at 09:18 AM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member John Oberon's Avatar
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    Well, I like it better than your first attempt. Looks like you cut it by about a third, but it still reads pretty darn heavy. You can still chop a lot. Read this:

    Two groups face off at a distance of a few yards and five hundred years. One is an NSA team investigating what may be Earth’s first genuine alien encounter. The other is a group of young people from the future on a mission to save mankind.

    In the 26th century, a genetic disease confounds medical science. They must discover the source of defective DNA causing the disease and eradicate it before millions die. They implement a unique plan to send a group of genetically engineered people to the 21st century. Their mission: to enhance the development of a worldwide genealogical database, which doctors in the future can use to identify people carrying the defective DNA.

    The young team tries to generate a space-time wave to carry the necessary information into the future, but some members of the NSA team want to stop them while others want to help them. Find out which side prevails in a tale of two centuries in The Yesterday Tree.

  8. #8
    Rogue Mutt
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    I stick with my version. You need a 30-second spot not an infomercial.

  9. #9
    Member K.S. Crooks's Avatar
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    A good way to do this is to make four versions.
    1) This would be the first version you posted. In it you have everything you think is important, though not all of it is vital.
    2) Edit the first version down to 200 words or less. This will give you a more concise description that can be placed on the back of the book.
    3) Edit the second version down to 130 words. This gives you something that can be advertised on a book mark or postcard.
    4) Edit the third version down to 25 words. This will be your 1-2 sentence elevator pitch to potential publishers/buyers/readers.
    Hope this helps.
    K.S. Crooks - Dreamer and Author
    http://www.kscrooks.com

  10. #10
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    updated my summary

    This is not the blurb on the back of the book cover. This is the description of the book I am currently using on Amazon. I believe the whole point of this kind of description is to attract a reader enough to at least take a look at the book and hopefully purchase a copy. Obviously, I consider this description a work in progress, so any suggestions for improvements will be most welcome.

    Do you believe time travel is possible? What about extraterrestrials? Or both?

    Computer specialist Joe Rebman joins a team to investigate what might be manís first contact with extraterrestrials. The alien nature of the craft, discovered at a remote location in the Arizona desert, raises concern for national security. This prompts the Pentagon to add Colonel Warren Anderson to the team. A group of college students on a field trip is discovered near the landing site. But they are not really students. They are time travelers from five-hundred years in the future with a mission to instigate the development of a worldwide genealogical database. 26th century doctors will use the data to track down and cure people with genetic mutations, saving millions from certain death.

    Is this an advance party of an alien invasion or time travelers on a lifesaving mission? Joe and the Colonel battle about which scenario is true. Joe believes he must help the 'students' save future humankind from genealogical doom. Colonel Anderson doesn't buy the story and wants to focus on the present. Who is right?

    THE YESTERDAY TREE asks fundamental questions about how we might respond to extra-terrestrial contact and confronts the possibility of time travel.

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