Synopses are summaries of books, written in third person present tense. Most writers don’t like writing them, because how can we, for all the gold in the vault of the Central Bank, put our whole novel into one or two pages? We feel, nay- we think, this is barbarous.
But writing a synopsis is a must. Agents and editors require it. Many will not even look at a sample of inspired writing unless the synopsis passes muster.
Let’s be positive here. This is what I find to be helpful about doing this dastardly deed.
First, it will expose a flawed or nonexistent plot like no other writing or reading exercise will. Better than a much more wounding or expensive critique from another. As a writer distills her plot, she also sees it from a bird’s eye view.
Second, it will reveal themes the writer hadn't realized were there. This is part of the great joy of self-discovery, which is a part of the raison d'être for writing, pardon my French.
Third, it will require a focus of the mind, which is also part of the joy of writing.
Fourth, it will leave a writer feeling virtuous for having gotten through something necessary but unpleasant.
I can’t think of a fifth. Can you?
Can you tell what I’m struggling with today? Hint…^