Thursday, July 19, 2012

How to Write a Synopsis for Your Novel, and Other Stuff...

Not too long ago I 'liked' a page on Facebook from a Writer's Magazine.  Not long after I did that, they shared an article that was written last year on "How to Write A Synopsis of Your Book or Novel."  For those of you who may not know what a synopsis is here's the definition.

A synopsis is a condensed statement or outline of a book.

It's usually is found on the back cover of a novel your reading, and may share room with the information about the author/author's picture.  I jumped at the chance to read this article because writing a summary of my books has never been one of my strengths, and I'm worried my next attempt at it won't give my readers enough information to want to pick up the book.  I'm also afraid I'll go overboard and give too much of the story away.

Fiction Synopsis Checklist

• What is the story about?
• Who is/are the main character(s) and brief summary of the issue(s) they are facing
• What are they feeling?
• What’s driving them?
• Why are they acting in a certain way?
• What’s standing in their way?
• What is the setting, if appropriate, and include a taste of it

The article also states, "Your synopsis should be written in the third person."

Reading this line in the article made me feel a little better because I know I'm not alone, "If you find it difficult to compile your synopsis, remember that even seasoned authors find it hard."

I felt compelled to add the non-fiction list as well for my poet friends out there who might want to see what a publishing company asks for in a proposal:

Non-Fiction Book Proposal Checklist

For those who are submitting non-fiction manuscripts, the synopsis is replaced with a book proposal, as it includes many different sections of information.

Your non-fiction book proposal should include:
• title page (just title, subtitle and contact details)
• summary of content
• chapter outlines
• author details
• sales, marketing and promotional information
• length, specifications and delivery date (ie how long the finished manuscript will be, if there are any illustrations and when it will be delivered)

What A Weekend!

I was all set to have a relaxing weekend at home when I got informed of some friends getting together for a bonfire on Friday night.  I jumped at the chance to go because some of the friends I haven't seen since last Summer.  A bunch of us carpooled together, and got to the bonfire site a little after 6:30 PM, and we hung out, laughed, ate hot dogs, and made smores.  Before I knew it, I was being dropped off at home around 1 AM.  I came online for a bit after I got home because I was still a little amped up to go to bed right away.  I finally crash landed on my pillow around 2:30 AM.


9 AM Saturday morning, I got woke up by someone pounding on my door.  It was my sister-in-law, and she was all set to go to the County Fair with me.  She waited for me to get around and we made it to the Fairgrounds around 11 AM and we didn't get home until 10 PM Saturday night.

We spent the day looking at the exhibits, visiting the animal barns, watching ATV races (Someone even raced a snow mobile!), and listening to different musicians throughout the day.  We listened to a Mariachi band, a group called Cascade Rye, a group called The Hanson Family Singers (They yodeled a lot), and the main attraction for the night was country singer Mark Chesnutt:

Some of his hits include: Bubba Shot the Jukebox, Going Through the Big D, It's a Little too Late, and Too Cold at Home.  

For the first time ever that I've seen in the 30 years I've been attending this fair, they had a wild safari animal exhibit.  They were all babies, but they was a tiger, lion, leopard, porcupine, wallaby, bobcat, skunk, and a couple other animals I can't remember the name of right now.

My sister-in-law also took a couple pictures for me.  One was of me standing next to a monster truck:

And the other was a picture of a wedding cake that I told her looked like a design I would want for my cake if I ever got married someday:

I also like the double heart topper on it.

I've spent the last few days recuperating from these two days.  I woke up Sunday morning feeling like death warmed over, so I've been sleeping a lot the past few days and barely eating anything.  Yesterday, I ate more food than I have all week, so I think I'm starting to feel better.  I'm at least starting to get my appetite back anyway.

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