Okay, your manuscript is ready, you’ve mustered up the courage and you’re ready to submit to an agent or a publisher. You do your research and you find one or two that you think will be a fit for your manuscript. You go to their website and read the submission guidelines and THERE IT IS…THE DREADED SYNOPSIS.
You say to yourself, “It just took me a year to right this manuscript and now you want me to summarize a 300 page manuscript into HOW MANY PAGES???” Okay, before you start to hyperventilate let’s break this down into manageable chunks. You need to think of your synopsis as the commercial for your book. This is your written pitch. Your shot at a first impression. So…You want to make a good one. Here are a few short tips on writing an effective synopsis.
1. A synopsis is a short summary of your book so you need to hit the high points. Don’t get caught in a quagmire of words. Short and to the point is best.
2. Keep your character description nice and tight. Include it within the summary of the book and don’t spend an entire page describing your characters.
3. Start at the beginning and go ALL THE WAY TO THE END. Yes, my dear writers, submission editors or agents do not like it when the author tries to include a clever little cliff hanger and not give away the end. Folks considering your book need too know how a story ends in order to make a decision on the marketability of your manuscript. They can’t do that if they don’t have the ending.
4, Keep your adjectives and adverbs to a minimum. If ever there were a time for tight writing this is it.
5. Include the more powerful points of your plot.
To get started try to make a few sentence summary of each chapter. Then string all that together in a narrative that makes sense.
It is easier than you think once you get started. Good Luck…
Until next time…Keep On Writing.