Most publishers will ask for a two page synopsis of your story. Sometimes it may only be one page.
This is a very quick explanation of your story from beginning to end. Don’t leave out the ending – the publishers want to know what happens. Keeping them in suspense will work against you.
So how do you write your story in two pages – here is a guide to help.
You don’t need to go into detail about what your character looks like or where he or she is from. Imagine you are telling a friends about your story when they ask you – what is your story about?
You want to able to recall the sequence of events and highlight certain aspects of your story that are important to the plot.
Here is a brief synopsis of my current 2014 NaNo story called The Sphere –
(note : at publication of this post my story has yet to be completed and certain aspect of this story may change once the editing process takes place.)
The Sphere by Michelle Rae
June is nineteen and living and working in the city. She works in a run down bar until one day her boss, Mick, discovers June is not only transgender but also a Special.
Being a Special is something June has keep hidden her entire life, fearing the retribution if discovered, to herself and her parents. Special’s are people born with an ability of earth, wind, fire or water. June’s gift is water, but having repressed her powers all her life, June cannot use them when her life is in danger.
Mick attacks June, and it is Inferno, the most powerful super-villain who saves her. Inferno takes June back to her apartment where June reluctantly takes up the job of personal assistant to Inferno. As a result of the new job, Inferno bonds June to her, considered illegal but June feels she is not given a choice after Inferno saved her.
Over the next few weeks, June comes to realise her job is more about taking messages she knows Inferno has no intensions of returning. The frustration of having to deal with so many desperate people begins to take it’s toll on June, but when the past catches up with Inferno, June finds herself in a situation she never imaged.
An incident in Inferno’s past has left her unable to control her powers, and the bond Inferno has created between June and herself, Inferno uses to control her powers. June discovers she has become an ‘anchor’ for Inferno’s powers and the first time Inferno draws June’s powers from her leaves thin red web like scars around June’s wrist and up her arm. The experience traumatises June and she demands to know the truth.
She meets Dr. Lloyd, a mysterious man, who helps June understand the situation both she and Inferno are in. Two super heroes, supposedly dead during an incident that left Inferno without control of her powers, return and seek out Inferno’s assistance. It is then June learns the truth about Inferno and the existence of a device that has the potential to destroy all Special’s once and for all.
As a result, Inferno and the two super heroes leave to destroy the device, and June unexpectedly finds the operation she has been saving for has been offered to her by Dr. Lloyd. Only the operation is the only way they can allow Inferno to use June’s power over a lengthy period of time, without June being killed. The operation is timed to coincide with when Inferno needs full use of her power. June can not find contentment, rather the operation leaves June severely depressed.
After her recovery, June discovers Inferno was not able to destroy the device, as hoped. It is only then that June realises she needs to strengthen her own powers if she is going to get out alive. The relationship between June and Inferno has always been reserved, and Dr. Lloyd informs June he believes June is the closest to family Inferno has. June’s perception of Inferno begins to change and rather than thinking of her as a super villain, June comes to realise Inferno has an important part to play in the way the world operates. This newfound revelation helps June to accept Inferno and the bond they have.
When Inferno contacts June to inform her of her need to use June’s powers again, this only reaffirms June’s feelings for Inferno. Prepared for the outcome, June is able to mentally prepare herself for when Inferno draws June’s power from her. But only a few hours before the event, June finds herself relaxed and focused on her power. Calm for the first time, June finds her power empowering, and during this moment the connection she has with Inferno is opened. June discovers she can see and hear all that is going on around Inferno, as well as feel Inferno’s emotions but not hear her thoughts.
The situation June finds herself in is neither foreign or uncomfortable as she watches the events unfold. When the two super heroes with Inferno are attacked and the device to destroy them exposed, it is then Inferno knows she must draw on June’s power earlier than expected. With no choice, Inferno connects with June, only then does she discover June is already waiting. The force of power from Inferno destroys the device and the men involved.
When Inferno returns home it is to discover June had been unconscious for three days and Dr. Lloyd monitoring her condition. When June wakes, she is relieved to discover Inferno is fine, the device is destroyed and the two super heroes are also alive.
The story ends with a new report about a second sphere shaped explosion in another city, similar to another experienced almost twelve-month prior. Both, it is explained, are a mystery and no one is yet to claim responsibility.
I will save my synopsis as a word document titled : The Sphere – Synopsis. This is the first document the publisher will read. If your synopsis grabs them, then they will be more inclined to read your story. It might also pay to have your beta reader or editor look over you synopsis.
I hope this information has been helpful.