the how of writing

knowledge is power

So, I’ve been looking up info on summaries/synopses.  It’s amazing.  It’s like looking up how to submit to a fiction market:  everyone has their own take on the subject with a few core principles.  Same thing here.  One thing that gets stressed over and over is verb tense.  The synopsis must be in present tense.  No exceptions.  None.

Oh, and short is good.  In line with this, I should only mention the important plot points (the things that move the story forward) and try to make it sound like copy because it’s going to be used as the base for any advertising.  This info has actually calmed me down a bit.  It gives me direction and direction is always good. 

The rest seems to be either author or publisher preference.

As for the copy/blurb aspect, I’ve always kind of liked reading book jackets or the back of a mass market paperback.  The reason I tend to check books out from the library before I buy them is because I’ve read too many fantastic book jackets/back cover blurbs and ended up with a terrible book that I ended up throwing against the wall.  And really, this resonates more with me than pretending like I’m writing to a best friend about my book.  I tend to get really detailed with my friends when I start gushing about a story.  Thinking of it in terms of copy not only gives me a format for writing but also a way of keeping things short.

Anyway, now that I’ve got a better idea of what I’m doing, I’m going to try again this next week and see if I can’t get it written and polished before Thanksgiving.  Wish me luck!

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