>I’m Tired and This Is All You Get

>Rather than espouse an actual opinion today, I thought maybe I could just focus on craft for a minute. I think we did this topic a while back, but sometimes things bear repeating. Besides, it’s my day, I’m tired, and this seemed like the perfect bear to tackle. Better than the huge snakes in my dreams. (I’ve got some HUGE kundalini issues apparently)

I’m in the middle of writing a synopsis for a proposal I’m doing. It’s the first time I’ve ever written a synopsis BEFORE the book was done. Let me say, I’m not a very happy camper at the moment. Synopses were hard enough to write AFTER I wrote the book, they’re almost impossible for me to write now because I’m a pantser. I don’t have a clue as to how this book is going to end.

Actually that’s not quite true. I had this marvelous dream this morning just as I was waking up. (Maybe that kundalini energy IS worjavascript:void(0)
Publish Postking some good!) I know EXACTLY how the hero finds out the heroine loves him.

Anyway, I’ve been struggling with this #$*^*# synopsis for a few days, and I’m sick of it. I know I have to have the turning points, and black moment outlined here, but I don’t think it’s quite that simple. It seems formulaic to me to put down, hero does X then heroine discovers Y. Granted, that’s oversimplifying things, but I think you get the picture.

I’ve been using Alicia Rasley’s Three Acts article as a guide. Alicia explains it well and it seems so simple, but it’s not. I do like her suggestion to do a list of things that the hero/heroine has to do making each action in succession harder to do. I’m punch happy today from lack of sleep, so I’m not even going to try and come up with examples. If you want those, read Alicia’s article. Still, I’m not sure it’s working for me. Maybe I’ve got this mental resistance to doing a synopsis. But then it’s how one sells a book in many cases, so I’m stuck between a rock and hard place.

So how easy is it for you to write a synopsis? When you write one and submit it to your editor, is the book done, started or only in your head? Inquiring minds want to know.


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About Monica Burns

A bestselling author of erotic romance, Monica Burns penned her first short romance story at the age of nine when she selected the pseudonym she uses today. From the days when she hid her stories from her sisters to her first completed full-length manuscript, she always believed in her dream despite rejections and setbacks. A workaholic wife and mother, Monica believes it’s possible for the good guy to win if they work hard enough.

4 thoughts on “>I’m Tired and This Is All You Get

  1. >Thanks for commenting Delle. Sounds to me like you’ve found the perfect solution for what works best for you. I’ve tried something similar, but since I’m rather verbose and take so long to get to a specific point, I’d wind up with a lot more than 30 pages as a mini-draft. LOL

    I also wonder if maybe each book I write won’t be different in terms of how it comes to me.

    I am delighted that I finished my synopsis, and at least I think I know how to work one. I just have to work from the front and back to get to the middle. Crazy I know. But it worked on the one I finished last week.


  2. >Hi Monica! Delle, here.

    I was reading your comments on another list, and thought I’d check your blog. I just finished a synopsis, which is what made me want to comment.

    I have to do a synopsis first.
    Recently, I tried a flying-into-the-mist project, and it’s still out there somewhere, flailing helplessly against the mist. I promised myself I’ll never do that again. So I’m counting all those months of wandering as a lesson well learned, and I’m back to doing my synopsis first, for a whole different book.

    It’s not a synopsis, really– more of a mini-story, an abbreviated first draft, just under 30 pages long, and it may or may not be the way the story ends up. I just sit down and tell myself I’m just brain-storming with myself. I write my idea as if it were really the story, but very short, and it’s more of a telling than showing version. I’ll stick in pieces of dialog or a scene description, maybe the way the heroine’s dress looks or the scruffly feel of the hero’s unshaven beard– whatever I see in my mind or hear, smell, touch with my mind’s senses.

    From this outline, or whatever you want to call it, I can expand to the bigger first draft. Or I can trim down and make into a real synopsis by analyzing it and cutting out extraneous stuff and concentrating on what’s basic to the story and characters. I’m always surprised when I do it this way because it has so many advantages. It doesn’t intimidate me the way writing a real synopsis would. My mind flows much more freely. I usually capture the tone and spirit of the book, which will carry over into the real synopsis when I get to it. Generally it’s not until I actually sit down and write this mini-draft that other newer, better, fresher ideas pop into my mind– in this case, a whole new and far better ending. And best of all, I know where I want to go with my story, and I backtrack far less than I would if I didn’t have my journey mapped out for me.

  3. >Well it’s painful, but it can be done!! I finished mine today, and I’m very pleased with it. I used Alicia Rasley’s article, and I back tracked…LOL That is I started at the end and worked backwards. It worked easier for me that way. I already knew what I wanted to start with (actually have five chapters written), just didn’t know where it was going until today. Now I do, and I’m moving on!

    Thanks for posting your thoughts though.

  4. >I have never written a synopsis before something is written but I would guess it is vague and not set in stone.

    When I was in college and having to research a particular subject, often there would only be a synopsis which never gave enough information in my opinion. It’s more like an idea.

    Sorry I couldn’t help you more.