Friday, November 04, 2005

The Perfect Wall-Banger Synopsis

I warn you.
This is bad. Very bad. BadbadbadbarfbagBAD.
Trying to understand, assimilate and adopt all the available advice on queries, cover letters and synopses is enough to make me feel like going quietly to the corner and throwing up masticated bits of queries, cover letters and synopses. Like a dog that's eaten too much grass.
I hate throwing up.
Throwing up is the top of my list of the Three Things I Hate Most - just above ramming stuffing up a cold turkey's rectum.
But stress, danger and pressure don't make me throw up - except symbolically. They make me giddy.
Giddy as in feckless, flighty, heedless and reckless. Just ask a certain doctor when my husband was in intensive care.
My real synopsis is down to three pages - single spaced.
So in frustration I composed disgusting doggerel, vapid, vague and vacuous verse - just so I could imagine an agent's horror if I was ever fool enough to send something like this.
Have sufficient disavowals of mental competence and responsibility been given?
Good.
For here is the Lay of the Last Mistral...

After the bloody Conquest
In the Northland, dark and fell,
A Conyers, hammer-fisted,
Took lands where dragon's dwell.

Ancient, old and hoary,
The legend passes down,
A serpent, sword and warrior,
Forever snared and bound.

As the tale is told in manuscript
A sibyl shows her face
And guides the ancient hero
With wisdom, craft and grace.

In the cathedral cellar Treasury
This broad and lethal blade
Waits patient on its bed of baize
For a dragon's fiery raid.

A name, a simple story,
A yearning in the heart
To interweave the past and now
And explain the mythic part.

We have a Family dragon
We have a Family sword.
We have an eager writer
With the story in accord.

Blow off the dust of centuries
And write it clear and bright,
A tale! O harper, hurry!
Before it fades from sight.

Like a hunting horn it called me
Winding down the years,
Of danger, strife and courage,
Of mystery and tears.

Time twists the heart and memory,
Time, like the past, repeats,
Time travels with our modern mind
With its sun-clock's kind deceits.

Take now a modern woman
And dump her in the past,
Without a gimmick talisman
Or any ritual cast.

Not just a tale of time zones,
Or a romantic easy lay,
But a story of those secret dreams,
Fantastic, strange and fey.

She meets a rugged hero,
An assassin and his lout,
And learns through past and present,
What they all are all about.

And so we have this writer,
Galumping through the mist,
Who wades among the sedges,
Regardless of the risk.

A wordsmith, pale and loitering,
A belle dame/beldam sans doubt
Who corrupts an ancient story,
And is looking for a tout.

So you see, my fellow sufferers,
This is what you write,
When your wits have gone a-begging,
And it's very late at night.

13 comments:

Ric said...

Bernita,
nice to see you're up and about early this morning.

Life is good - looks like you've got your winter planned out for you.
Best of luck - we're all rooting for you.

Bernita said...

Yep. A winter sending out queries and pounding the walls. I appreciate the support and it's returned in spades to you all.
Sorry the post is so long, Ric, but you're the serial killer.

Robyn said...

Time Travel! WOO-HOO!

Bernita said...

Not so very original in outline, Robyn, I know, but there are twists. She doesn't snog her remote ancestor, just for starters. And the paranormal bit is only part of the problem...er...plot.

James Goodman said...

Wow, this synopis makes me want to hide everyone I have ever written as they are shamefully boring in comparison.

:)

All kidding aside, it is very nicely done.

ali said...

According to Miss Snark (who I think should be raised to god-hood), all synopsis are bad. I let that comfort me :).

Bernita said...

You're a kind guy, Goody.
I got carried away, too much emphasis on the history, which is only a third of the book, and bare mention of the parallel present - Islamic assassin and all that - but I had fun with it.
It's refreshing to be deliberately bad, rather than innocently awful.

I let that comfort me too, Ali. I hope many agents thank like she does.

jason evans said...

Writing a synopsis is like trying to put mittens on a twelve-handed monkey.

Savannah Jordan said...

Simply put, synopses suck. I have a post in my other blog about synopses and all the mechanical stuff we writers are forced to contend with outside of our lovely comfortable realm of writing.

BTW, your poem rocks. Fun to read, great meter and rhyme.

Mark Pettus said...

I wish I could pay someone to sell my story to an agent. What would you call someone like that? An agent's agent? An agenting agent?

Good Luck, Bernita.

Bernita said...

Jason is my adopted son and I am very proud.
Thank you, Savanna, I shall go and read that.
Mark ~ gazing into my crystal ball ~it will be soon for you.

Bonnie Calhoun said...

Hi Bernita, I'm back from retreat...Thank God!!!I need a vacation to recover from the retreat. I like the way you made a poem out of it. Good luck with the synopsis. Did you see that sometime in Dec. Miss Snark is doeing the Crapometer for 500 word synopsis? Wooho!!!I'll be ready!

Bernita said...

Bonnie, that photo was sweet, but you looked awfully tired. We missed you.