I need help in expanding my synopsis to 500 words for the Wattys, so far I have 130 words. (It’s still 500-750 words, right? :joy:)

What else do I need to add?

Julio talks to dead people. And he knows when someone is going to die.

After he meets his boxing hero, Dory Smith at a restaurant, the ghost of Ramon Ramirez tries to coerce him into conversing with his widow to tell her about buried treasure in his yard, which he will get a cut for in return.

When Julio reluctantly agrees, he witnesses the death of prized soccer star, Lombard Ortiz on a sidewalk going home. Lombard and Julio start to converse with each other and fall in love.

All is well until a change in circumstances rips them both apart, and Lombard can’t remember anything about their encounter.

With the help of his friends, can he get Lombard’s memory back before it’s too late and everything is forgotten about?

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That looks like the blurb you’d find on the back of a book. A synopsis is an outline of the entire story’s arc.

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Yes, I know but how can I bulk it out? And make it 4x as many words?

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First note, be scarce with naming your characters. Don’t drop a name after a name, unless the character will be mentioned more than twice. You can try to use adjective+noun for example to avoid it.

This confuses me. What does Dory Smith and the ghost of Ramon Ramirez have to do with each other?

It feels like disjointed stories.
It starts like it’s going to be a treasure hunt story that’s led by a ghost. That’s okay. It’s an interesting premise, interesting hook.
But then he falls in love with a ghost and that’s a totally different story. It’s a good hook too but which story am I supposed to follow?

Avoid vagueness like the plague. Either be specific, or say nothing at all.

First of all, don’t ask questions. Second of all, this isn’t a blurb. In a synopsis, you have to tell the full story. Don’t make me guess what the story is.

So start from the beginning.

  1. A synopsis is a full summary of your book. To keep it concise, stick to only the A story - no B stories, no subplots or side quests. From reading above, it looks like that’s the fall in love with a ghost story.

Once you figure what story you’re telling, say it from beginning to the end. It should be a cause and effect statement.

You will have to reveal all plot twists and all spoilers. Full story.

  1. Introduce the main characters. Who are they? Why should we care about their journey?

  2. If this is a love story, introduce the love interest. What makes them interesting?

  3. Synopsis is where you tell, don’t show. Don’t worry if it feels a bit dry. It’s okay. This isn’t the blurb. You don’t have to be super clever or funny.

However, you can sprinkle in your style and the mood of the story through word choices.
This is also how you can make the genre clearer - just a couple of keywords are enough.

But before you try to spruce it up like that, you need to have the barebones of what story you’re telling, so that all goes back to point 1.

Good luck.


What you have now doesn’t tell you where the story’s going or how it ends. Start with that—you have to cover the entire narrative arc. Synopses shouldn’t have questions. So you need to add pretty much the entire middle and end, which should make it pretty easy to bulk.


Specifically: write out all the spoilers. This summary isn’t for your readers, it’s for judges to know what’s going on in the story.

Like really, what’s the TL;DR of your novel?

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