Thursday 25th June 2020
I got the synopsis done.
Yeah, I know. Two days ago and I was hating on it and felt I had a mountain to climb. But as I said, sometimes it only takes a small thing to unlock the whole jigsaw puzzle.
The key for me was wanting to utilize a certain character. This gave me an excuse to stop recurring things from recurring quite so much and made the plot seem a little more managable.
Part of the reason it felt right was because my gut told me that this novel had a large cast and this change enabled some of that.
I wrote up my outline and turned it into a synopsis. Because of the way I outline it makes this fairly trivial. There are a few nods here and there in the outline, but I made a point of leaving out anything that wasn’t directly connected to the plot to keep it short.
I don’t know if it was the heat or the relief of having it done but I wrote it up pretty fast and sent it off. If the reasons behind it had been slightly different, I might have edited it a bit more, but I can agonise over edits and waste a lot of time.
Get it done and out the door.
Do I think it’s perfect? No, if I were about to write this I’d probably spend a week or two refining it. But for what I need, I think it’s better than what’s standard across the industry.
I did this pretty fast. Normally it takes me a solid month to come up with a synopsis. However, I don’t think it necessarily represents an improvement in my outlining speed. Firstly, I had already noted some very rough ideas so I wasn’t coming into this cold. Secondly, because it had a lot of dependencies, that actually made it easier to outline. I had a clearer view of elements of this novel which meant I could focus purely on plot. Finally, because of those dependencies, I realised that some things weren’t set in stone and could only really be decided when it came to write.
My big breakthrough was realising what this book had to represent. Once I had that, I had a solid end I could work backwards from. As always I got stuck around the middle where the story moving forwards meets the story I’m planning backwards. However, I think I’ve become better at smoothing over the cracks.
I’d built this one with theme in mind, identifying the theme before I started properly outlining. If I were about to start writing, I think I would have given the outline another pass, making sure the antagonists all fulfilled a different role in answering the question posed by the theme. But as I’d put the work in to identify the theme, I felt that if there were ever to be any changes, they’d probably be minor.
Overall, I’m pleased with how it turned out. I’m hoping to get some feedback on it soon.
But for now… It’s back to seeing if I can write a script inside a weekend
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