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Phy

Mike Duran On Writing Synopses And Your Life's Direction

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He then relates that to the unfolding stories of our lives. (This link is to his Facebook page where the permissions are locked down to people who he's Friends with.)
 

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A good synopsis (the kind found on the back cover of a novel) is written back-to-front. Knowing the ultimate outcome of the story we sprinkle breadcrumbs which point the reader in that direction without giving away the resolution. Unlike writing a story, we experience life front-to-back. None of us can be sure what lies ahead of us, whether tragic or comic, difficult or easy.

In this sense, none of us can perfectly "synopsize" (?) our lives.

Why? Because we're still in process. We're all in different proximity to our "conclusion."

The closest we can get to a "life synopsis" is to articulate the arc of our story/lives, the general direction they're heading and the values and experiences that will likely shape our responses to future events. I can't necessarily control what will happen to me, but I can control how I will respond. So while none of us can control the twists and turns of our life's "plot," we CAN control our potential responses to what may bless or befall us. A good story is not one void of tragedy, suffering, or difficulty, but one in which the protagonist courageously and fairly faces those challenges.

You may think you can "synopsize" your life, but as long as you're living, your story is still unfolding.

So the question is not the direction your life will take, but developing the character to face whatever lies ahead of you.

 

 

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23 minutes ago, Phy said:

So the question is not the direction your life will take, but developing the character to face whatever lies ahead of you.

 

The first time I read this, I read "the character" as the person in your book, the protagonist. So "whatever lies ahead of you" should have been "whatever lies ahead of him/her." Then I realized that you were talking about character as moral strength. As writers, we do both.

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