It finally happened! After months of sending out queries, searching literary agents and publishers, finding the perfect matches to your work, and enduring endless rejections, you finally find a silver lining…you got a manuscript request! It may be a partial, or may be a full, but either way, this small step forward leaves you feeling elated!
But wait…they don’t just want the manuscript. They also want a synopsis. Oh oh.
This is a typical addition that every publisher or lit agent will require along with your manuscript when they request more material after your query. This synopsis will give them a snap shot view of the work, before they take the time to read the slower, and more in depth progression.
What is a synopsis? How do you write one that will do your story justice? And why, oh why, did I not even know they would want this?
Well, in terms of not knowing agents or publishers would want a synopsis…don’t worry. I didn’t either until my first full manuscript request. This left me in a mini panic, pouring over my manuscript trying to pick out the details that were most gripping and substantial, and then editing and reediting to make it sound perfect.
But for the other questions, here is a little help.
What is a synopsis?
Basically, a synopsis is a short, usually one page, clear and concise summary of your complete book. This will require your overall story line, the arches and characters, and give the reader the basic, complete view of your book.
How do you write a synopsis?
Here are the main points of suggested elements to ensure you include:
Things to avoid in a synopsis:
Formatting is important!
When faced with a request for more material from a publisher or agent, after you finish with your excitement and squealing, you will be back to business ensuring you provide them with the best view of your book as you can. A clear, concise and impactful synopsis will be the first thing they read after your query, and could set the tone for how they view your manuscript as a whole. Following these tips can give you a starting point to creating a synopsis that grips the reader, and makes them desperate to know more…
And that is when they will jump in to your manuscript with baited breath!
Writers Digest. (2012). How to write a synopsis like a pro. Retrieved from http://www.writersdigest.com/editors-picks/learn-how-to-write-a-synopsis-like-a-pro
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