So I had a fun adventure in writing recently. While researching a certain literary agency, I noticed they requested a synopsis in their sub...

Me, My Story, and the 500-Word Synopsis

So I had a fun adventure in writing recently. While researching a certain literary agency, I noticed they requested a synopsis in their submission guidelines. No problem! I thought. Already wrote one of those!

Until I realized their word count limit was 500 words  and the synopsis I’d written was over a thousand.

Cue the panicking music, hyperventilation, and brown paper bags.

Ugh! I thought. Why were these agencies so determined to limit my creativity? I already had to condense my 53,000-word book into a three-page synopsis; now they wanted me to get it down to a mere 500 words? That was more terrifying than a summary! At least for that I wasn’t supposed to go over everything. I only had to give the reader enough of a taste to entice them.

But a synopsis! They wanted me to describe the whole story and go over all the main plot points in 500 freaking words.

Were they insane?

But then I stopped freaking out, buckled down, and just wrote. And, while it was difficult to say the least, I’ve found that I actually enjoyed the challenge. I found myself grinning as I labored to find the perfect words, the shortest phrases to say precisely what I wanted to say. And when I finally looked over the whole thing, checked the word count, and found that I was actually under 500 words, I actually cheered for myself.

So, initial panic attack aside, working on my synopsis has been quite the enjoyable journey (betcha never thought you’d hear a writer say that). Now, I’m half-tempted to put word count limits on all my projects!

Any of you had a similar experience?


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2 comments:

  1. LOL I love the panicking imagery! I've had that feeling with writing too little. Like 1,000 words about why I think hard work is important. I'm like "it just is!" what else am I suppose to write about! Then I sit and write about the American tradition, not working meaning you don't eat, and the beauty of innovation and suddenly I'm well over 1000!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks! Wow that sounds almost harder than writing a synopsis. The "It just is!" definitely would've been my first response.

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