Wednesday, May 25, 2005

A string vest synopsis

I have dragged my old syjnopsis for TSD out, and immediately wish I hadn't. it was supposed to serve as an aide-memoire but I immediately thought what was I thinking? I should have put more in.
As far as sketches go, this is pencil light, the merest hint of a story. The sum total of the middle bit is -- he saves some people in a storm. Huh? Why did not I not write more? Why did I not write a full tow page outline to give me something to go on (generally too much ast this stage) but something concrete.
I can tell by reading the first three chapters,I had a lot more ideas. Luckily I will be able to pick up on those, but it does annoy me when I thought I had been clever and mapped out the book to find it moth eaten and currently string vest like.
So now I shall have to take the time and rewrite this. Then write the rest. I normally write my first version of the synopsis at about the end of chapter 3. It gives me something to go on. I know the characters then. I know where their motivations are heading. I know the basic outline. It is time well spent in general because the actual writing goes much quicker. Once it is done, a copy sits on my desk, becoming increasingly stained with coffee rings, tea splodges and cryptic notations. Even down to circling phrases and writing ch 7/8. It may not work for most people but it does work for me.
However, I thought maybe I had done the work last summer but no way. I shall have to put my thinking cap on again and come up with a few better twists.
Luckily the Donald Maas Breakout Workbook has a few exercises for developing plot twists, turns and layers.
This can be a good book. I can feel that in my bones. I would like to make it be the best it can be.


Julie Cohen said...

Then again, look on the bright side: your writing style and strengths are bound to have changed in the time since, and a string-vest synopsis allows you to use the stuff you've learned.

Says Julie, who's finding it a little difficult to break out of the plate-mail synopsis she's got for her current (revised) book.

Michelle Styles said...

There are String vests and string vests.

But you're right my writing has improved and perhaps it is why I can see the plot holes more clearly.

In any case, the current version appears to be more workable...