Do Books Need Taglines?

As consumers, we’re used to seeing “taglines” for commercials and movies, but do books need pitch lines too? In today’s competitive environment, anything that grabs a reader and gets them to look deeper into your book is worth having. Look at some of these great movie taglines.

Alien – “In space, no one can hear you scream.”1320661
Erin Brockovich – “She brought a small town to it’s feet and a big corporation to it’s knees.”

Finding Nemo – “There are 3.7 trillion fish in the ocean. They’re looking for one.”

Apollo 13 – “Houston . . . we have a problem.”

Armageddon – “Earth. It was fun while it lasted.”

The Social Network – “You don’t get to 500 million friends without making a few enemies.”

Platoon – “The first casualty of war is innocence.”

Shawshank Redemption – “Fear can hold you prisoner. Hope can set you free.”

Get Shorty – “The mob is tough, but it’s nothing like show business.”

These taglines add intrigue to the story and makes you want to read more. As writers we can deliver on the tagline when, most of the time, the publisher delivers on the title. It not only grabs an editor, it grabs the reader. We need to embrace the idea of tagline/pitch lines for children’s books. It’s a competitive world of scrolling through options and the pitch could set us apart.

Mo Willems offers Picture Book Inspiration at the High Museum

Last night, I had the pleasure of hearing Mo Willems speak at the High Museum in Atlanta. He definitely has the right formula for writing children’s book. He’s honest, has great sense of comedic timing and is authentically empathetic to children.20150528_204126

Some of the best advice he gave was that books are more intimate than other forms of media. That’s because “books speak to you in a whisper,” and unlike television, a book doesn’t tell you how much time to spend with a scene—you can take as long as you wish.

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