Refreshing my Amazon book pages. Part one, the description.


I have two ideas to refresh my books, in an effort to boost sales. I’m talking about the first one of them today.

Some of my older titles are languishing and it’s time to bring them up to date. I don’t mean by rewriting them, rather by changing the way they’re presented on the Amazon sales page, the first point of contact for a prospective reader.

Take my space opera Myra, I like the cover, the description is really just taken from the back of the paperback, preceded by a quote from a review,


“A rattling good adventure story, with… unexpected twists, good characters and plenty of action”
“I could not put it down”

“I turned, and even though I didn’t immediately realise it, it was then that I fell in love.”

Meet Dave Travise, at least that’s who his identity chip says he is. An ex-Navy man on the run; somehow he’s ended up in a dead man’s shoes; on a new ship and on the wrong side of the law. With no way to prove his innocence, he’s just got to play along and keep his head down if he’s going to survive. As if he doesn’t have enough problems, now he’s fallen for Myra, the engineer on his new home.

Pursued by criminal gangs and keeping one jump ahead of everyone, Dave and his new shipmates are going to need all the luck in the Galaxy just to stay alive.

“Richard Dee has a superb gift for creating believable reality, and this first-person narrative is space opera at its best.”

Read Book 2 of the series, Freefall, for more adventures with Dave Travise.


Now, you might not know but there is a suggested format for book descriptions. Certain people have made a study of the best way to attract attention, after all, you only have five lines to do it before you get to the little button that says read more. Which means that there’s not a lot of space to make someone want to either buy the book outright or click to read more of the description.

According to what I’ve read, the layout should be in 6 parts,

1 Hook – a single idea designed to intrigue the customer.

2 Introduce the Main Character – give the customer an example of why they should care about your character.

3 Plot – tell the customer the thrust of the story.

4 Twist – then, hit them with a complicating factor that is exciting, or unexpected.

5 Premise Question – Set up the theme of the story in the form of a question.

6 Call to Action – Answer the question by telling the customer to buy the book, right now.


The question is, does my blurb follow the rules?

Can I make the first five lines a bit more exciting?

Initially, I’m getting rid of the quote on the first line, moving it to the bottom out of the way. That leaves me with five lines to play with.

I like the bit about Dave, that’ll do for number 2, I need a hook, a headline that asks a question.

How about this, Can changing your name change your life. Or this, Do we carry who we are with us, no matter what we’re called?

Part 3 is fine, as is 4, the twist.

For 5, we can use the other of the two hooks.

6 can incorporate the reminder that this is only the first part of a continuing story.

My new version is below,


Can changing your name change your life?

Meet Dave Travise, at least that’s who his identity chip says he is. An ex-Navy man on the run; somehow he’s ended up in a dead man’s shoes; on a new ship and on the wrong side of the law.

With no way to prove his innocence, he’s just got to play along and keep his head down if he’s going to survive. As if he doesn’t have enough problems, now he’s fallen for Myra, the engineer on his new home.

Pursued by criminal gangs and keeping one jump ahead of everyone, Dave and his new shipmates are going to need all the luck in the Galaxy just to stay alive.

Do we carry who we are with us, no matter what we’re called?

 Find out how Dave’s life changes in Myra and the sequel, Freefall.

“A rattling good adventure story, with… unexpected twists, good characters and plenty of action”


“I could not put it down”

“Richard Dee has a superb gift for creating believable reality, this first-person narrative is space opera at its best.”


Of course, the only way to see if the new description is any better is to try it and see, the great advantage is that you can change it as many times and as often as you want.

There are a couple of really useful websites for formatting and checking your description, to save you from uploading it and waiting twelve hours, only to discover that your bold text is in the wrong place, or that you’ve missed out one half of an html <?> remark.

The first one is from Dave Chesson at kindlepreneur.

It allows you to format your description text, with effects like bold, underline etc and gives you the result in html form, ready to paste into the appropriate box.

The second is Ablurb, a handy preview tool,

 this tool shows you how your blurb will actually look on the Amazon page. Just count the first five lines to see where the READ MORE button will occur.

That’s just one part of the changes I want to make to all my titles, next time I’m talking about the importance of the seven spaces for keywords in the KDP set up page. And how your title affects your search results

What do you think, is my revised version better than the original? Which one would make you more likely to buy, or have I missed something that could make all the difference?


I’d love to get your comments, please leave them below. While you’re here, why not take a look around? There are some freebies and lots more content, about me, my writing and everything else that I do. You can join my newsletter for a free short story and more news by clicking this link.

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