Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Literary Revamp

I rewrote the catalogue description. My editor was pleased. Tell me what you think. Here's the new "Moon" copy:

"When Jory Lalaban, a Filipino postman, finds himself the target of a racially motivated shooting he is forced to confront long buried memories of his life in the Philippines - how he came to abandon the priesthood to become a worshipper of the Moon; his youth in an orphanage after World War II; the devastating 'curse' that forced him and his new bride, Belen, to flee the Philippines for the United States.

The shooting makes international headlines disturbing the quiet life of the Lalabans, a family forced to face its darkest fears. The reader is introduced to a cast of memorable characters like Emerson Lalaban, the son who talks to his dead brother on the phone, but fails to properly communicate his feelings to the man he loves; Michael, Emerson's Taiwanese boyfriend, who vows to never fall in love with an American again; the wife Belen Lalaban, a woman who hears the quirky voice of the Virgin Mary; and William, the racist gunman who demands to be heard. Inspired by an actual event, this funny, rich novel unflinchingly tackles the most explosive topics facing America today: race, religion, and sexuality."


Paul said...

Very nice!

Anonymous said...

Hi Noel,

This is probably the hardest part of your task – writing the blurb. I think over all you did admirably.

I do have some comments. Having just read The Disinherited by Han Ong the gay Filipino sensitivity in literature is still with me. Unfortunately, I think the blurb for Moon sounds kind of all over the place and as a reader I’m usually suspect of blurbs that begin with the word “When” or lines like “Inspired by an actual event” and especially “The reader is introduced to a cast of memorable characters like…” I think for me those phrases get either overused or presumptuous. I worry that there may be too many names mentioned for the potential reader to get an idea of whose story this is. It sounds like it takes place in flashback as well as real time. It doesn’t sound gay enough to perk my appetite and there’s no mention as to the literary cohesion employed to pull off such a multi-faceted story – in other words, no mention of the literary quality of the writing, which is what usually attracts me to buy a book. I don’t envy you this task of blurbing something you put your heart and soul into. My own time is coming soon (I hope) and I haven’t the foggiest notion of what I’ll do.

I heard you speak once on a panel at UCLA and look forward to reading the Montgomery Clift novel very soon. Best of luck. - Ron

Sundry said...

Sounds really interesting! Can't wait to read it!

I agree with Ron about the phrases he quoted being, perhaps, unneccessary. I was interested in the cast of characters, though. Some of them piqued my interest even more. I'd suggest taking a run at that paragraph without using the names of the characters. Your short descriptions of them are interesting enough to draw me in, but their names make me feel I have a lot to remember. Perhaps even find a way to give each his/her own sentence or sentence fragment. Maybe something to the effect of "Meet the people in Jory's life: "

It's really exciting to follow along your progress toward publication. And brave of you to ask for feedback online!

Cheryl said...

You did it! You found a picture of an even gayer moon.

thelastnoel said...

Whoa, thanks for the comments and suggestions.