Synopsis Biopsis

I hate writing synopsises…synopsi…those things.

The synopsis is smashing down the entire novel into a single paragraph or two into a summary. Part of its purpose is to tease the reader and publisher into wanting more. Think of the synopsis as what’s on the back cover of a book with just a wee bit more added in.

Another part is to help the writer to figure out just what the hell she is aiming for. Which is probably why I hate them.

Someone asked what this latest book of mine was about. And I couldn’t quite answer that question. “Earth is about to end, aliens come and rescue a bunch of people in time…you know.” I think that’s what I said.

I don’t think I can write a synopsis until the book is finished. Too many variables. Too many plot holes. Too many untied strings. But there comes a point when I feel the urge to start narrowing it down. Almost always it happens about 30K words. Exodus is at ~29K so I am feelin’ it. I am doing it in my head for now. It has helped to fix some of the problems I’m having.

One problem was the sheer numbers of people. The world’s population right now is just under 7 billion. I at first was thinking that maybe 22% of them would be genetically homosexual. And of that amount, 45% were lesbians. That came out to be 672,885,369 lesbians.

Think about it. 672.8 MILLION lesbians/humans. That’s a shit load of people. So I did some research on just what is the percentage of homosexuals? That number depends on the country/region. Some countries have a high percentage (up to 45%) and others have a really low one (as low as 2%). Then I was thinking that perhaps not everyone who identifies as being homosexual may not be genetic homosexuals. So I dropped the numbers down to half to 11%. Still left me with 336.4 million lesbians. Oy.

Okay, plot change. No way could they have gotten everyone. Yeah, sure they could have if all were put into cryogenic suspension. But still, what to do with all of them? So I changed the plot. They didn’t have time to take everyone off. I looked at 25% of all lesbians had been rescued (84 million) and of those, only 1% would be woken up (brought out of cryogenic suspension). They would help the aliens to decide what to do with them all. That meant 841,107 would be awake and moving around. Still a huge number but somewhat more manageable. Slightly more than the population of San Francisco.

Now my synopsis is starting to form. Plot knots are being combed out to nicer looking threads. Plot holes are being patched with more information. I still couldn’t write it out but it is there like a ghost. Just don’t ask me to come up with it.

Linkages:
What Percentage of Population is Gay? (Gallup poll)
Demographics of Sexual Orientation (Wikipedia)
Modern Survey Results (part of above article; interesting section)