Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Anything but writing...

OK, I admit it. I'm lurking on here to avoid the task I've set myself this week: writing my synopsis. The first attempt lies before me as I type this and I'm trying to avoid looking at it. What a coward, I hear you cry. And you're right.

The trouble is, there's so much riding on it. As a marketing tool, the synopsis is your possibly one chance to get an editor's attention. Never mind those 85k words of carefully crafted plot, poetic description and fascinating insight. If you can't grab 'em with this potted version you can forget it.

So here I am trying to shoe-horn in every detail I can, trying to remember all the important bits and not leave out anything that might help sell it. So far I've managed to avoid the temptation to write "And then ... " at the start of every sentence, which is encouraging. But some of the sentences end up very convoluted: Kevin discovers his life-long friend, Barnaby, whose dog had swallowed the ransom note, is having a clandestine affair with Ruby, his housekeeper and the blackmailer of Jonathan, his flat-mate.

Keeping it in present tense isn't as easy as it sounds. Old habits die hard. And there is a lot of conflicting advice around. Double-spaced or not? One page long or six? Don't ask.

But I must press on and get these submissions out this week, if only so I can forget it and get on with some writing.

I can feel one of my heads coming on...

2 comments:

Col B said...

Tell me about it, Sandra. I (& every other writer) face the same problem. I'm entering the Dagger 2009 so very soon I will be fretting just like you. But since you're one step ahead of me, I may have to pick your brains for tips! Good luck.

Sandra Patterson said...

Thanks, Col and good luck with the Dagger.