Thursday, 16 January 2014


This year I want to progress in my writer's journey. Where am I? Well, I can see where I want to go, but there are lots of forks along the path and plenty of diversions.

I'm revising The Junk Room, my current WIP, and I'm encouraged by the feedback I'm getting from the SCBWI e-critique group. All these little steps that are coming together will further my learning.

As well as this, I've been doing some reading on submission packages. This can include query letters, cover letters and synopsis. There's a wealth of information out there on the web. Below are some of the resources I tapped into.

Writers and Artists
Nicola Morag - Write a Great Synopsis
Query Shark
Also check out resources from literary consultants, agents and publishers.

I started off looking at the elevator pitch. This is a great exercise breaking your novel down to 25 words. It's not easy, but it's a great challenge. What is the core element of the story? What does the MC want? What is their main hurdle?

This can be developed further for the synopsis where you should see the MC's journey through major obstacles, plot and climaxes. It should explain the structure of the story and character development. This summary of your story is written single spaced, on 1-2 A4 sides. It's not a lot, is it? That's why they say it's hard to write.

Along with your sample chapters, this is your first impression, so make it count.

What are your experiences? Did you find it easy? Fun?


  1. Sounds like you're off and running in 2014, Debbie. I have found that, for me, the elevator pitch can be more difficult to write than a synopsis.

    Best of luck with your writing this year!

  2. I think the synopsis is every writer's nightmare - we can write 70 000 words, but 200? Definitely not! Good luck for 2014 and hope all your hard work pays off!

  3. Yes, writing an elevator pitch is a GREAT way to distill your novel into its core element/s. I try to do that even though I don't need it to query agents anymore (since I have one)--because invariably someone will ask me, "What's your book about?" and it's good to be able to say it succinctly! With synopses, I write a big rambling version to get all the points in, and then I start slashing it down to 1.5 or 2 pages. :) It's always good to have a 1-page version, too.

  4. Belated thanks, Victoria, Nicky and Carol. The heart of the story in a nutshell. It's a challenge I'll crack.

  5. Hi Debbie, thanks for popping into my blog to say hello again! I've not been around writerly blogs much lately as my writing is on hiatus. I have a Nano story that I was trying to edit but it keeps being put aside.

    1. It's nice to here from you. Keep going with your writing.