Tag Archives: synopsis


The Dreaded Synopsis

Recently, I had the pleasurable experience of writing a short synopsis for one of my WIPs. Right, disengage sarcasm mode.

Writing synopses isn’t exactly fun. Trying to condense all the character development and interwoven plots of your carefully crafted, 60,000-odd word novel into (in my case) one page at 1.5 spacing. But it is doable.

photo credit: Joybot 
via photopin cc / Text added

I’m someone who learns from example, so it’s no good telling me how to write a synopsis. I need to be shown. So, here’s a great post describing how to write a 1 page synopsis using Star Wars as an example.

I’m also incredibly lucky that I have a great circle of writer friends to help me. It’s useful to have both people who have read the story and some who haven’t check out the synopsis.

People who have read the story are great because they can help you pick what to include, what to gloss over, and what to leave out.

People who haven’t can tell you whether the synopsis makes sense, because they can’t fill in the blanks with any prior knowledge.

And people who read your revisions over and over again, telling you which bits you’ve done well and which bits need work, and encouring you to continue polishing that baby until it shines…well, they’re fricken amazing.

Eventually you get to the point where you have to submit that bad boy somewhere. A deadline looms. So you decide, that’s it: it’s as good as it’s gonna get. And if you look at it one more time you’re going to end up editing around in circles and make it worse again. You either have to click send (or print) or take up a less stressful hobby like knitting.

And time will tell if you did a good job.