Author Topic: Willa's Dawn synopsis  (Read 3370 times)

Offline newtothis22

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 75
  • Karma: 4
Willa's Dawn synopsis
« on: October 18, 2017, 12:14:23 AM »
I am taking a small break from my frustrating query writing to work on my synopsis. It is 782 words so a little long. Any advice would be appreciated.

WILLA TAYLOR awakens early, haunted by the recurring dream of her parent’s death. She feels the rock and sway of her uncle’s ship as it takes her on a meandering journey to her dreaded future in England.
 
Willa is a half Seminole orphan who was raised by her extended family and a warrior guardian from her mother’s people. She is an independent, stubborn eighteen-year-old who enjoys using her own vast means to help orphans that were not so fortunate.
 
She is forced to leave her home in America and journey to England in order to fulfil a betrothal contract her father made with his best friend Ian Sinclair. Willa is expected to choose between Ian’s two sons to marry. Willa’s dowry includes the Sinclair hereditary lands that was lost long ago in a foolish game of chance. Against her families wishes, she hopes to end the long-standing agreement. She heads off on her journey with plans to offer the Sinclair’s the land in trade for ending the betrothal so she may return home without a husband.
   
LIAM SINCLAIR is a hard-working, arrogant, but jaded man. He along with his brother run his father’s shipping business. Liam catches up to Willa in the French city of St. Nazaire where she defies him by sneaking off to the slums of the city. Her intentions were good but her desire to assert her own will over his dictatorial commands made her behave more recklessly than usual.

Liam, coming upon her surrounded by a large group of street ruffians valiantly but foolishly protecting two children with only a knife, did little for his dwindling patience. He retaliates by asserting his dominance with a passionate kiss neither would soon forget.
 
He realizes he is attracted to her but after being betrayed before the age of twenty and losing a fiancée to the sea, he never plans to marry. He pushes Willa towards his brother even though it makes him angry to see them together. His brother elopes with another, leaving Willa and Liam the only ones left to fulfil the contract.
 
Knowing it was the only way to regain their hereditary lands and remembering the promise he made to his friend to protect Willa, Ian refuses to release Willa or his son Liam from the contract.
 
When the whirl of a London season brings them together again and again they begin to fall in love. London also brings danger.

Willa was a witness to her parent’s murder and the man who murdered them was living in England as a fraudulent Baron. He always wanted her mother. When he sees Willa, he decides she will fulfil an old fantasy and begins to make his heinous plans. First, he snatches Willa from a ball but she was rescued by Liam and her Seminole guardian before they could get far. There is also a woman who is obsessed with having Liam for herself and tries everything to sabotage their relationship. After they are married she spreads rumors that she is carrying Liam’s child and places her own maid in their home to reaffirm those rumors to Willa.
 
Willa is in ignorant bliss for the first few weeks of their marriage. While they are secluded in their manor house in Scotland, she falls deeply in love with her husband. It isn’t until Liam was called away for business that the rumors reach her, at about the same time Willa realizes she is carrying Liam's child. Willa was heartbroken about the rumored betrayal. Liam stays away for far longer than planned and it only makes the stories Willa is hearing more believable. She alienates herself from the people around her while she contemplates her future. She finally realizes her husband could never do the things being said about him.
 
Just as Liam returns, Willa is kidnapped once again by the fraudulent Baron. This time no one knew where she had gone. She was taken to a secluded cabin and the first chance she gets she defends herself with her lethal knife. She leaves the man who murdered her parents bleeding out on the floor while she makes good her escape. Liam, with the help of other’s, tracks her to the cabin to find the dead man but no Willa. Frantically they continue to track her, they find her just as the snowstorm that was threatening converges. Liam rushes an unconscious Willa home and has her examined by a doctor.

Liam finds out she is carrying his child and while she is recovering from her bruises and a cold he hovers protectively over the woman he loves. When their daughter is born he holds her tenderly wondering if she will run him as ragged as her mother. 
« Last Edit: October 24, 2017, 09:30:39 PM by newtothis22 »

Offline newtothis22

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 75
  • Karma: 4
Re: Willa's Dawn synopsis
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2017, 09:33:42 PM »
Ok, so no one is commenting. Is it that bad? lol 

Offline J. Paul Barnett

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 34
  • Karma: 2
    • J. Paul Barnett
Re: Willa's Dawn synopsis
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2017, 06:24:12 AM »
I don't have specific edits in mind, but I think that your sentence structure tends to be too uniform and simple, which makes the entire synopsis hard to sit through. I would suggest you vary your sentence structure more throughout.

Synopses are the worst, I realize, but I would also suggest you try to work in more of the voice of the book (I'm assuming that your book has more of a unique voice). Personally, this isn't the type of book I would read, so it's hard for me to give you suggestions beyond that.

Good luck!

Offline newtothis22

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 75
  • Karma: 4
Re: Willa's Dawn synopsis
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2017, 02:21:20 PM »
I understand that this isn't your preferred genre, thanks for taking the time to help me out. I wrote this synopsis from one of the many guidelines. I will go back and give it more voice.  :wink:

Offline Catharina S

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 21
  • Karma: 2
Re: Willa's Dawn synopsis
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2018, 06:50:07 AM »
Hi @newtothis! Your genre is very similar to mine. I do agree with the one comment you've received. It seems, for lack of a better term, "choppy". I think you could restructure your sentences to flow more smoothly, especially since it would suit what I perceive to be your time period (since you mention "London" and "the season" in your synopsis, can I assume it's either Regency or Victorian era?).

For example, this sentence:

She is an independent, stubborn eighteen-year-old who enjoys using her own vast means to help orphans that were not so fortunate.

might be rewritten as:

An independent, stubborn eighteen-year-old, she uses her own vast means to help less-fortunate orphans.


Think about switching up some of your sentence structure so that you don't start with pronouns quite so frequently. That was really jumping out at me repeatedly.

It might be a good idea to have the style of your synopsis reflect the style of the novel, though you will want to maintain a definite level of clarity. As it reads now, it's pretty dry, though it does clearly state your plot. Keep an eye for typos as well, though that is a minor point for a rough draft.

I'm very interested to know more!

Offline newtothis22

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 75
  • Karma: 4
Re: Willa's Dawn synopsis
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2018, 09:02:59 PM »
Thank you Catharina S. I have shelved Willa's Dawn for now but I truly appreciate the comments because dry and choppy seems to be a theme with my new synopsis also. My queries aren't amazing either but I struggle most with the synopsis. I will apply your helpful critiques to my new synopsis.  :)

Offline kaperton

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 175
  • Karma: 32
Re: Willa's Dawn synopsis
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2018, 08:20:08 AM »
I've made a few notes. Watch your tense switching. My book is written in present tense so past tense really sticks out to me. Personally, I didn't find it too choppy, but I still struggle to write good synopses myself--how do you cram that much info in a few words without it being a little choppy?

I am taking a small break from my frustrating query writing to work on my synopsis. It is 782 words so a little long. Any advice would be appreciated.

WILLA TAYLOR awakens early, haunted by the recurring dream of her parent’s parents' [assuming it was both parents] death. She feels the rock and sway of her uncle’s ship as it takes her on a meandering journey to her dreaded future in England.
 
Willa is a half Seminole orphan [not to sound too SJW, but people tend to point out the minority half and we assume the other half is white, but that makes the assumption that white is the default race. I think it's better to identify both halves.] who was raised by her extended family and a warrior guardian from her mother’s people. She is an independent, stubborn eighteen-year-old who enjoys using her own vast means to help orphans that were are not so fortunate.
 
She is forced to leave her home in America and journey to England in order to fulfil a betrothal contract her father made with his best friend Ian Sinclair. Willa is expected to choose between Ian’s two sons to marry. Willa’s dowry includes the Sinclair hereditary lands that was were lost long ago in a foolish game of chance. Against her families [family's, or families' if she considers herself to have more than one family] wishes, she hopes to end the long-standing agreement. She heads off on her journey with plans to offer the Sinclair’s Sinclairs the land in trade for [I haven't heard this phrase before but maybe it's regional--I would have said "in exchange for" or "as a trade for"] ending the betrothal so she may return home without a husband.
   
LIAM SINCLAIR is a hard-working, arrogant, but jaded man. He along with his brother who runs his father’s shipping business along with his brother. Liam catches up to Willa in the French city of St. Nazaire where she defies him by sneaking off to the slums of the city. Her intentions were [are?] good but her desire to assert her own will over his dictatorial commands made [makes? I'm not sure if you're referring to the sneaking off part or the part that comes next] her behave more recklessly than usual.

Liam, coming upon her surrounded by a large group of street ruffians valiantly but foolishly protecting two children with only a knife, did little for his dwindling patience. [If you take out the middle phrase, this sentence reads "Liam did little for his dwindling patience." How about, "Coming upon Willa surrounded by a large group of street ruffians and witnessing her valiantly but foolishly protecting two children with only a knife does little for Liam's dwindling patience." I still don't love it, but it makes more sense.] He retaliates by asserting his dominance with a passionate kiss neither would soon forget. [This sentence bothers me. I read mostly m/m romance, so I don't know if this kind of power dynamic is common in historical m/f romances, but the phrasing makes me squirm. I know you're not asking for my opinion of your story, but I just wonder if agents will be put off by this sentence as well. It's very much, "I will go against your will and kiss you and you will like it." I guess they do the same thing in m/m romances, but because they're both the same sex, there's not the power issue. Could you at least tell her reaction to the kiss, so that it's not just something done to her? I hope I'm making sense. If this is standard m/f romance, please just ignore me.]
 
He Liam realizes he is attracted to her Willa, but after being betrayed before the age of twenty and losing a fiancée to the sea, he never plans to marry. [What does Willa want?] He pushes Willa towards his brother even though it makes him angry to see them together. His brother elopes with another, leaving Willa and Liam the only ones left to fulfil the contract.
 
Knowing it was is the only way to regain their hereditary lands and remembering the promise he made to his friend to protect Willa, Ian refuses to release Willa or his son Liam from the contract.
 
When the whirl of a London season brings them together again and again they begin to fall in love. But London also brings danger.

Willa was a witness to her parent’s parents' murder [This is the first mention of her parents being murdered and surprised me. This should be mentioned earlier. How about at the beginning, instead of saying "her parents' death", say "her parents' murder"] and the man who murdered them was is living in England as a fraudulent Baron. He always wanted her mother. When he sees Willa, he decides she will fulfil an old fantasy and begins to make his heinous plans. First, he snatches Willa from a ball but she was is rescued by Liam and her Seminole guardian before they could can get far.

[new paragraph since this is a big jump, and maybe some kind of joining phrase, like, "In other news..." Just kidding. Don't say that. I just can't think of a good phrase.] There is also a woman who is obsessed with having Liam for herself and tries everything to sabotage their relationship. After they are married [I feel like their marriage should get its own sentence! Isn't this kind of a big deal?] she spreads rumors that she is carrying Liam’s child and places her own maid in their home to reaffirm those rumors to Willa.
 
Willa is in ignorant bliss about the rumors for the first few weeks of their marriage. While they are secluded in their manor house in Scotland, she falls deeply in love with her husband. It isn’t until Liam was is called away for business that the rumors reach her, at about the same time Willa realizes she is carrying Liam's child. Willa was is heartbroken about the rumored betrayal. Liam stays away for far longer than planned and it , which only makes the stories Willa is hearing more believable. She alienates herself from the people around her while she contemplates her future. She finally realizes her husband could never do the things being said about him.
 
Just as Liam returns, Willa is kidnapped once again by the fraudulent Baron. This time no one knew knows where she had gone. She was is taken to a secluded cabin and the first chance she gets she defends herself with her lethal a knife. She leaves the man who murdered her parents bleeding out on the floor while she makes good her escape. Liam, with the help of other’s others, tracks her to the cabin to find the dead man but no Willa. Frantically they continue to track her, they and find her just as the snowstorm that was threatening converges. Liam rushes an unconscious Willa home and has her examined by a doctor, and finds out she is carrying his child.

Liam finds out she is carrying his child and while she Willa is recovering from her bruises and a cold, Liam he hovers protectively over the woman he loves. When their daughter is born he holds her tenderly, wondering if she will run him as ragged as her mother. 

« Last Edit: November 14, 2018, 08:43:57 AM by kaperton »

Offline newtothis22

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 75
  • Karma: 4
Re: Willa's Dawn synopsis
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2018, 11:19:57 PM »
Thanks for the input. It's pretty great. I will hopefully be ready to post the synopsis soon for the book I am currently querying. (I've been mostly querying to agents who don't ask for a synopsis).