I would rather watch two snails placed on opposite sides of a large garden try to find each other than write a synopsis.
I am sure there are a thousand things better to do in one’s life, but.. Why is there always a but? I have to write the dreaded synopsis. I have two weeks to condense the essence of a novel into something breath-taking, fabulous, mind-blowing, and awesome. It is the hardest thing to write. It would be easier to write a new novel than complete this feat. But, it has to be done. I’ve been putting it off far too long!
One of the problems with writing a synopsis is quite simply fighting the urge to tell all. There are so many scenes that you want the reader to be aware of, so many little nuances. I mean if you were to write a blow by blow synopsis of Moby Dick maybe it would read like this
Ishmael suddenly announces his intent to go abroad a whaling vessel. He is a sailor but never before has he stepped on to a whaling boat. He travels to New Bedford, Massachusetts and stays in a whaler’s inn. The inn is full so he shares a bed with a harpooner named Queequeg.
Are we asleep yet? The name Queequeg did wake me up a bit. Little tricky to spell.
The two men become friends and try to get work on a whaling vessel..Okay I can’t even continue at this point. I am so bored I will never read this book and Moby Dick is a fabulous book! How do you write a good synopsis that will sell?
You do have to get across what the novel is about. Who the main characters are, and most importantly what are their conflicts. A perfect life makes boring reading.
I wish I could remember which agent passed on this little gem, but I can’t. If you are out there reading this, pop me an email if you want to be identified!
But she said, go find a good book review and try to make your synopsis read like that.
That makes sense, you want to grab the reader and a really good book review sells books and hooks readers.
So I think I will go read some book reviews and see whether that will joggle my brain a bit. Here’s hoping I can write something decent before my pitch session! I will keep you posted!