Publishing a book is an act that goes beyond writing the manuscript. You have to work on many other areas, such as writing the synopsis. This small fragment will be one of the appeals to potential readers who will end up buying your work. A showcase that will serve to decide whether this title finally falls into their hands or not.
After all, love at first sight does exist and the glance that readers take at your synopsis can be the moment when their heart and your book’s heart will be united. How to build this fragment? What must not be missing in it? Pay attention to the advice we give you on this occasion.
What to tell and what not to tell?
You could think of the synopsis as a summary of the plot. And yes, this is often the case, but you can always get more out of the situation. For example, don’t just talk about the main story, highlight also qualities of your characters, what makes them interesting. Every book has an added value, something to contribute that no one else brought, your job should be to find it and make it clear in this section.
In the case of genres such as poetry, unless there is a common thread between all the verses, you can talk about the type of poems they will find (are they odes, elegies, satires). You can also explain what is the common thread between all of them so that readers can decide if it is to their liking.
Don’t fall into clichés
Yes, we know… every detective story has unexpected twists and turns that will leave us open-mouthed, and every romance is frantic and heartwarming and full of passion. Go a step further and, again, we invite you to avoid clichés, to surprise with distinctive elements that highlight the individuality of your work.
The synopsis of your work should also dispense with clichés such as, again, “full of unexpected twists and turns”, “a romance full of passion”.
There are synopses that, in their quest for perfection, end up extending for long paragraphs. The result? The reader ends up getting bored because he doesn’t really understand what is being said. Get to the point, make an impact with few words. Imagine, in this sense, that it is a TV commercial in which you have a short space of time to tell what you are selling (in this case, your book) and what you will contribute in it.
In general, we do not recommend you to exceed 200 words, although if you need more, you can reach 300 words. How to get to the point? Easy! You have written the book and therefore, you know which elements stand out and which do not. But be careful, don’t tell everything, just leave the reader with a picture in his head of what he will find.
Beware of spoilers
Nobody likes to have a plot spoiled. If there really are unexpected twists and turns (sorry to fall into the topic), you must allow the reader to discover them. If you must talk about the plot, you have to do it to hook, not to reveal anything. An example that you can take as a reference is that of Agatha Christie’s collection.
Undoubtedly, it would be a great disappointment to know how the case so convoluted presented by the queen of mystery ends. However, it is enough to read two pages of her synopsis to be hooked.
Don’t follow the plot line
The synopsis, besides capturing the reader’s attention, should be a tool to put people in situation. A guide to contextualize the territory, the protagonists or the subject matter of the verses that will mark the course of the pages. Find them without dwelling on too many details!
Review, revise and teach
The best way to know if the synopsis of your book that you have worked on has gone in the right direction is to show it to your acquaintances (especially if they are of the group that has not had the opportunity to read it so far). They will judge whether they found it interesting, engaging and a good hook. The saying goes that the third time’s the charm.
So don’t hesitate to rewrite the synopsis of your book and adapt it to the recommendations of your acquaintances. Rome was not made in a day, but you can certainly achieve the best results in just a few.