Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Get a free critique on your mini synopsis...

Submissions now closed. 
A big thank you to everyone who participated.

Because this offer had a positive response, I'll post a similar offer in the future.

I thought it would be fun to do something to help fellow writers. I know how important it is to have a query letter that is well written and intriguing, something that will make your letter or email standout in a crowded inbox. I’m offering you the opportunity to get a free critique on your mini-synopsis.

What is a mini-synopsis? It’s the blurb in a query that summarizes your story in less than 200-words.

What’s the catch?
  1. Your submission is limited to 200-words. This mini-synopsis is for the query letter and should be a concise summary of your story.
  2. I would really appreciate it if you’d help me spread the word about this offer and about my blog.
  3. This is a limited time offer. Submissions will be open for three days or to the first ten people to respond, whichever comes first.

How can you participate?
  1. Send an email to [removed]    Check back for future offers.
  2. Put the words “Query blurb” in the subject line of your email.
  3. Include in the body of your email the title of your book, targeted audience, genre, and the mini-synopsis.

Your submission should look something like this:

     Title: The Chocolate Made Them Do It
     Audience: Young adults
     Genre: Romance

          Jessica swears it’s not her fault the entire football team now hangs on her every word or that Mike, 
     the hottest guy in school, won’t stop calling her. She used to be just another fourteen-year-old trying to 
     survive freshman year. That all ended when she shared a box of chocolate peanut clusters that she swiped 
     from the top shelf of her grandmother’s pantry…

     (My example is a little rough. I had chocolate on my mind when I wrote it.)

Before you reply, here is a little more information about me:

Q.  Who am I?
A.  I’m a fellow writer who would like to help others make their publishing dreams come true. I started writing about seven years ago. I’ve attended writing conferences and I’ve taken different courses to help improve my craft. My debut novel, Embrace, will be out this winter.

Q.  What can I offer you?
A.  A fresh set of eyes, for one. I can also let you know if something in your mini-synopsis is unclear.

Q.  Am I guaranteeing my comments will get your query letter out of the slush pile?
A.  I wish I could make a promise like that, but my response would be my opinion and you are free to take it or leave it as you see fit.

Q.  Then why bother?
A.  You only get one chance to impress an agent or an editor. Having a writer who is unfamiliar with your story review your mini-synopsis will help you to know if it’s ready for its targeted audience. Besides, what do you have to lose?

Q.  Should I be the only person who reads your mini-synopsis before you send your query?
A.  Definitely not. I believe in having several people critique my synopsis before I consider it done and I think you should do the same.

Your mini-synopsis will remain private as long as you submit to the email address above. At no time will I repost it on my blog or website. Responses will be sent directly to the submitter.

Now what are you waiting for?


  1. I probably should have asked participants to include how you heard about my blog in your email, but you know what they say about hindsight.

    There is still time to submit your mini synopsis. I've replied to those you participated so far. :)

  2. Tweeted it and I don't need a synopsis, but think it's great you're offering it to others. :D

  3. Tweeted this for you. I may send you one. Although, I'm not submitting, a lot of review sites want a synopsis. So, it's something on my to do list yet.

  4. only ten? are there any slots left?
    more questions!
    a synopsis reveals the end
    a query tells some of the story to get an agent to want more...
    you want full mini story or query meat? ah! no time! must submit to you!
    thanks, will ad tomorrow!

  5. Thanks for tweeting for me!

    Tara, sorry for the delay in replying. In a query I tell some of the story, but then leave off with something that will hopefully leave the reader wanting more, like a cliff hanger. It's similar to what you see on the back of a published book.

    I also have a 1-page synopsis ready to send if the agent/editor requests one. This is where I get into more detail and include the ending.

  6. Sent off the next round of critiques this morning. There are still a few slots available for those thinking about submitting.

  7. I believe I've gotten back to everyone who sent a mini synopsis to me for a critique. If you haven't heard back from me, please send me an email.

    Today's the last day to submit if anyone was still thinking about it.