Saturday, March 12, 2011

Synospis: the art of folding the accordion

I don't know what is worse: writing a cover letter or writing a synopsis.
I guess I will start with the synopsis.
I have started reading articles about how to write the perfect synopsis.
No wonder why writers get depressed. It is mission impossible.
Be concise but be plain.
Be professional but be enthusiast.
Be original but follow the guidelines.
Be marketable but be honest.

Can it get more difficult than that? One thing I learn is that just because it is an awful task to do, it doesn't mean it shouldn't require dedication and tenacity.
In fact, the synopsis seems to be as important as the book itself. And I understand it now.
It is not only about selling your idea, you sell your writing skills, your desire to convince others, your ability to think about structure, plot, characterization and the overall credibility/joy that it is to read the whole story.
So yes, it is crucial to get it right since it basically is the mini version of your book.
But why is it such a pain to do then?
Just got my answer while I was writing this:
We, writers, are basically asked to compress all our love in this non-lovable exercise.
How can you compress love?
Love expands. It doesn't contract. That is why it is such a damn difficult thing to do.
Yet we must bend, squeeze, fold it like an accordion. And if we get lucky, just if we get lucky, we get to unfold our instrument to play our part.


  1. Cécile la parisienneMarch 12, 2011 at 11:24 PM

    Ask 10 personnes who read your book, tell them to resume it in few sentences and make your own synopsis.

    Love from Paris with your big brother Fab' !!!

    See you soon


  2. I think the cover letter is worse, or maybe it's because I'm working on mine. The synopsis was more difficult than I thought, but that's done, or as good as done for now. The old cover letter, plugging you and your novel, there is just something cringy about it, or maybe that's just because I'm Irish and self praise, even the pretend stuff is not in my DNA.