As publishers, we love getting good blurbs for our authors. At their most basic, they’re a simple marketing tool: for readers not familiar with an author, seeing a quote from another author they’re familiar with offers a way into a world they might not have exposed themselves to otherwise.
But there’s a trick to getting blurbs. It involves fostering the right relationships, leveraging contacts, calling in favors, and sometimes just plain extortion. Often enough, savvy readers understand this and no doubt many of them resist blurbs for just this reason.
Here is Mark Jude Poirier on blurbs:
A blurb from an author I actually know and dislike on a personal level—usually based on their abhorrent behavior in graduate school—means I will turn the book backward on the shelf in the bookstore or hide it under a stack of Sarah Palin’s Going Rogue.