Saturday, April 28, 2012

Unraveling, unwinding

I spent ALL DAY (other than a two hour break to take my daughter to a dance) writing synopses (synopsises?) for my first two novels. I actually had a two page synopsis for the first novel, but I'd recently learned that agents might want a shorter, one page synopsis. Ack! Don't they know how hard it is to relate everything in a 350 page book in just two single spaced pages? Now they want it chopped to a single page? Whasa?

So I started with that. I copied the long synopsis that I made during my first round of edits into a new document, and started chopping and rearranging, rewriting and condensing. It took hours, but eventually, I got that sucker to fit on a single page. And then it was on to the difficult task.

I took notes during the first round of edits on the second novel, but I never transcribed them into a proper synopsis. When I reread after the first draft, I make notes of every plot point, character intro, and anything else I think is important to the story. I started by transcribing all fourteen pages of notes. Fourteen pages! Granted, that's fourteen pages of my handwriting in a 6x9 legal pad, so it's not as bad a fourteen pages of typed notes, or fourteen pages of notebook paper. Still, though, I write kind of small...

When I finished that, I had four pages of typed, single-spaced synopsis. It was nearly 2300 words. Too long even for a long synopsis. I got out my chainsaw and started cutting, pasting, and rewriting. I finally got it down to two pages, single spaced. I renamed the file "Long Synopsis", saved it and copied it into a new document. This time, instead of a chain saw, I used a scalpel. I pared everything that wasn't absolutely necessary to coherency and after hours of this, at 12:19 this morning, I finally had a single page that defines Devil May Care. Then I went to bed.

Seriously, it took about twelve hours to do that. I promised myself a reward today if I could get it done. So I'm paying up. I've spent most of the day today reading Unraveling by Liz Norris. It's great! I'm about a quarter through it, so I'm eager to get back to reading now. It's the kind of book you can't put down once you pick it up, and I'm too eager to find out what happens next, and what's up with the mysterious Ben, what Janelle's dad knows about the victims in his case, and what it has to do with Janelle. So....gotta go now.

Oh, one last thing. I was enamored with Lulu's fashion choice this morning:



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  2. Love the style!!I wrote a post once about my daughter being the modern day "Punky Brewster"! (

    I also love how you reward yourself for completing a task...I used to do that with my diet coke addiction. "If I drink a bottle of water, I will reward myself with a diet coke". It worked~ must revisit that concept with my writing!


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