View Full Version : synopsis for submissions

08-25-2003, 07:32 AM
Since many of us are planning to submit their novels/poems/scripts/art/whatever, does anyone have any tips and tricks for writing a good solid synopsis? From what I understand, every publisher/lit. agent will be looking at that and any help on that score would be a bonus.


later days
Lia etc

08-25-2003, 08:09 AM
This is a sample of a submission form from http://www.levinegreenberg.com/
they are literary agents and I found it a good one so I thought u guys mite like it.

later days
lia etc


Please complete the following form and send it to us by clicking the submit button at the bottom of the page. You will have an opportunity below to attach your proposal or sample chapters, though due to file sizes we ask that this attachment not be longer than 50 pages. If you need to reformat your file before attaching it, we recommend that you do this before filling in the entire form. We will let you know within two weeks if we would like more information about your project.

Due to the volume of submissions we receive, we are unable to respond to all incoming mail. We prefer electronic submissions, but if you choose to mail in your query we will contact you by phone or email if there is interest in your project. Since we will not respond to anyone by mail, please do not include SASEs or send in original artwork, photos or other items that need to be returned.

Also note that we are no longer representing children's books.

How did you find our site?

Were you referred to us by someone? Did you find us through a search or a link from some one else's site?

Contact Information

Please give us a couple of ways to contact you:




Type of Project

What type of project are you submitting?




Briefly summarize your idea, indicating what makes it unique and compelling. Pretend this is the jacket flap copy that people will read once your book is on display at your local bookstore.


Briefly explain your qualifications and background for writing this book. Pretend this is the author's bio that will appear on the jacket flap of your published book.


Who will want to read your book and why?

Competing and Related Titles

What books on the same or similar topics have already been written? What makes your book different?

Special Marketing and Promotional Opportunities

Is there something about your position or background that will help a publisher in selling your book? For example, do you give speeches and/or appear in the media? Are you affiliated with an organization that plans to purchase and/or promote your book?

Status of Your Project

Is your project in the initial idea stage or do you have a full proposal ready? Do you have a full or partial manuscript ready for review? Have you already submitted your project to other agents and/or publishers?

Questions or Comments

Let us know if you have any questions about our submission process. And feel free to make suggestions about ways in which we might improve it.

Submitting a Proposal or Sample Chapters.

We welcome you to submit your proposal or sample chapters. Due to file size however , we ask that you do not submit the entire manuscript without our request. Please limit your attachment to 50 pages (less then 150KB).

Please upload the word document here:

[Select Submit to send us your query;
select Reset to cancel what you have written]

08-25-2003, 09:27 AM
Several months back I tried to do a couple of Critical Mass type projects based on "the pitch" or a synopsis but those were dark times :D As you can probably guess, we got nowhere with that project. BUT I wanted to do it because the pitch is often more important than the actual work. Most agents and publishers don't have time to actually sit down and read even a synopsis (or rather ALL of the ones that are submitted to them) much less the entire manuscript. So a Pitch is extremely important because the editor might not ever look at the script, novel, whatever if the pitch doesn't catch his/her interest.

that's about all I know though :D

08-25-2003, 09:40 AM
That's true.. but how does one go about doing it? what things shld we look out for, that sort of thing..

Need to learn how to pitch! somehow.. LOL

08-25-2003, 07:41 PM
well... I think that the main thing is to show them that you can write well and inticingly, even if it is in a constrained environment.

I'll dig up some info on it again and perhaps we can all help each other write exciting and well written pitches in the form of a project... anyone game to try?

08-25-2003, 10:06 PM
dont u mean 'enticingly' ? (cackle)

Yeah, I'm game! I really wanna learn the best approach for pitches/submissions etc cos well, I have to! hehe

let's do it, Ven!

later days
lia etc

08-25-2003, 11:19 PM
Here's a pitch by writer Micah Wright, that he pitched to Wildstorm:


There's a link at the bottom to the actual pitch. Need Acrobat to read it. As far as pitching other material, like novels, screenplays and the like, I've got no clue. :)

08-26-2003, 05:41 AM
cool muth! thanks!!!

will check it out soon. it looks like major storm and the kids are getting hungry.

later days
lia etc

Chris Piers
08-26-2003, 11:49 AM
Learning how to spell helps. That way the literary agent won't toss your stuff out the window after skimming the first sentence.

08-26-2003, 12:04 PM
Thanks for your insight. It was ver helpful.

08-26-2003, 07:59 PM
Here is one of the better articles I've found on pitches.


08-27-2003, 10:41 AM
niiiiiiiiiice article!

Thanks Ven! Looking fwd to "testing" those theories out in our 'practice run'. :D

later days
lia etc

Steve Conan Trustrum
08-27-2003, 03:45 PM
Originally posted by banshee
Since many of us are planning to submit their novels/poems/scripts/art/whatever, does anyone have any tips and tricks for writing a good solid synopsis? From what I understand, every publisher/lit. agent will be looking at that and any help on that score would be a bonus.


later days
Lia etc
It really depends on the company reps' preferences, the type of writing you're submitting, and similar criteria.

The best thing to do is REALLY scour their site for the info and contact them with any questions; just try and stick to the point and don't bombard them. And always maintain a professional voice. Perhaps the only thing worse than coming across as a fanboy wannabe is asking a question that is clearly answered in the FAQ.

If you can find their contact info, email a person who has been published by that company and ask their advice. Some people may not respond because they're dill holes, but you'd be surprised how many pros are willing to help the new guys get started.

Steve Conan Trustrum
08-27-2003, 03:50 PM
Oh, one last tip: NEVER underestimate the value of making good contacts. You'd be amazed the wonders that can be worked in your favor once you have managed to earn the respect of someone on the inside. HOW you do that, however, is another matter entirely ...

08-31-2003, 12:32 AM
That's some great advice, Steve!

soo... wat's happening with this.. are we gng to hv an practice run or something?

later days
lia etc

08-31-2003, 02:38 AM

I'm trying to come up with a couple ways to approach this. I'd be happy to bounce a few ideas off some of you if you would like. PM me.

08-31-2003, 07:48 AM
YAY! :D I'm up for that!

later days

08-31-2003, 03:17 PM
Again, all publishers are different, but you're safe with all of them by doing no more than a one page synopsis that explains how the whole story/series will work from beginning to end.

Also, don't use any "hype" in your synopsis and make sure your spelling/grammar is correct or else it will no doubt just go right in the circular filing cabinet.

09-01-2003, 11:31 AM
welcome to thewritersdesk and PJ, Brian :D

glad to hv you on board!

later days