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Monday, 31 May 2010

Synopsis blues

Medieval illustration of a Christian scribe wr...Image via Wikipedia
Reducing a story with 52 named characters, 68 chapters and over 250,000 words into a single page synopsis is the equivalent of distilling the essence of a forest into a single phial. But the result has to be good enough to catch the attention of a busy literary agent long enough to get the piece read and to induce the agent into reading the first 3 sample chapters that form the staple diet of such power brokers. Publication without an agent is so unlikely as to be hardly worth considering these days. Publishers are sure to publish only those books written by the already well-known, having forgotten that such people were once themselves beginners and had to be helped into the spotlight. Everything is numbers these days, with the accountants running creative businesses that once had the vision to take risks, putting the likes of Graham Greene, John Fowles, J.K. Rowling onto shelves where the reading public could access their storytelling genius. Now, the first hurdle is to reach the literary agent in the hope that the writing will be sufficiently impressive to encourage them to take the next step. So, on with the job of condensing 250,000 quarried words into 700 gemstones that will sparkle whilst imparting all the agent needs to know about the story. Wish me luck!
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