Y … is for You

Y[1]  is for you. Yes, you if you are a writer!

What can we do?

All the rest of us can offer advice, give constructive criticism, and as much support as we possibly can.

What else can we do?

We can buy into your brand. We can buy the end product; your book, and then we can read. How hard can that be? Well, the response to that particular question rests again with you. Have you done your job properly?

What can you do to affect our response to your writing?

1.  You can come up with a good, preferably original idea for a story, and write it.

 2.  You can take your time and tell it well, remembering to edit, print it, read it aloud and edit again.

3.  You can put it away to let it simmer in your files for a few weeks … yes, I’m serious.

4.  You can get on with other projects for a while, and perhaps start another idea, or simply read up more on the main theme of your masterpiece.

5.  You can go back to your story, and go through it to see where you can improve it. More editing? Yes, and never believe it stops. As an artist, even when I finish a piece of artwork, it may be completed, but I’m never totally satisfied with the result.

Is there any more that you can do?

Yes, if you want us to read it and give it a glowing review, you can keep the effort going right on through the final stages, when you get to the presentation stage.

 1.  Don’t settle for the first title you think of.

2.  Don’t settle for the first cover idea you think of.

3.  Don’t waste all your literary efforts by throwing the manuscript and supporting information together.

4.  Don’t allow somebody else to do the formatting, unless you know they are capable.

 5. Don’t forget to keep a ‘safe’ copy of your completed work before formatting and final stages.

What do you get out of that brief list of do’s and dont’s?

In simple terms, you will end up with a better product to sell to us. You will also be rewarded.

 1.  You will gain financially by seeing the book sell.

2.  You will be looking forward to the reviews and confident they will be mainly positive.

3.  You will have the satisfaction of knowing you did what was expected of you, by the people who paid good money.

4. You will have the confidence to move on with your next project, and you will have learned many lessons.

5.  You will feel so good about the whole experience, you will want to help others as much as you can.

I would like to thank you for dropping by and taking these tips on board, like the good writer that you are.

If you should decide to come back to read my final post on the A to Z Challenge 2014, you might be in for a surprise.

I’ll be seeing you tomorrow, for ‘Z’ … .

S … is for Synopsis

S[1] is for synopsis. In terms of writing, it is also for sex, suspense, style, senses, strength, support, spelling and of course story. In this post I’ll concentrate on synopsis, because I think it would be easy to write a post on each of the others too.

What is a synopsis?

It’s a brief summary, usually of a novel.

Are there any guidelines for writing a synopsis?

Yes, there are several, and I’ll list them here as best I can, but as I suggested in my post on resources, double-check out the topic elsewhere. What I aim to do here is give the novice, or unsuspecting novel writer an insight into a word that strikes terror into the heart of many writers.

1. It should be written in a similar style to your book: humorous, serious, or whatever.

2. It should be written in the third person point of view. i.e.: he, she, they. Not; I.

3. It should be written in the present tense.

i.e. ‘Karen is embarking on a voyage of sexual discovery.’

   Not, ‘Karen was embarking on a voyage of sexual discovery’,

   Not, ‘Karen will embark on a voyage of sexual discovery’.

4. It should introduce your main characters and their conflicts, but should not be a cast list.

5. It should give a clear idea of the plot: serial killer, kidnapper, sexual predator, etc.

6. It should flow logically so is easily understood by the recipient, (publisher, agent, editor).

7. It must show the conclusion to the story. No secrets, and no cliff-hangers. You cannot be ‘precious’ about the ending – it must be clear.

Is there a format for a synopsis?

Yes, wouldn’t you just know it. Unless advised to do it differently, a basic layout is formed in the top left corner of the first page. Single or double-spacing depends on the requirements of your recipient, and the length of the synopsis.

Synopsis of: Beyond The Law

Genre: Thriller

Word Count: 150,000

By: Tom Benson

Once again, I’ve tried to give a taste of what is a deep and detailed topic. The list I’ve given is not all-encompassing, but I hope for some of you guys at least, it has dispelled one of the myths surrounding the synopsis – like it is easy to write. lol

Thank you for reading, and I’ll be back tomorrow with ‘T’.