I Wrote a Synopsis!

by on 11.16.2009

in writing

Yes.  You read that correctly.  After much nail-biting and teeth-gnashing online, I wrote a synopsis.  I’m tempted to use lame web animated fireworks.  That’s how proud/excited I am.

Want to know how I did it?  Fine.  I’ll tell you.  But, I suspect, it’s one of those things that you can read a dozen articles about, but eventually you just have to hunker down and write the damn thing.  Much like writing a book.

  1. I went through my book and summarized the turning points and points  of conflict.  This was 12 pages long.  A crazy length for a synopsis.  Some editors or agents will take ten.  Some will take five.  Most want 1-2 pages.  But don’t despair!
  2. I included my GMC in the first paragraph or two, when introducing my characters.  It’s the easiest way to explain who they are, what they want, and what’s in their way.
  3. I highlighted my turning point scenes.  If you’re not writing to turning points, here’s a clue.  Those I trimmed a bit, but mostly left intact.
  4. What was left, the ‘in-between’ I pared down, summarized, but with a goal of maintaining my voice throughout.
  5. Look for what must be included, look for what must be included that you can say with less words, and look for what is not absolutely essential.  Don’t include subplots, don’t include dialogue (more than a line, but I advise against it).

Things to remember: Write in present tense.  Include the ending–don’t ever leave a hook and suggest the editor/agent read your book to find out.  Practice–just like writing, it’s okay if it’s bad at first.  You can fix it.

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