Feedback on synopsis for upcoming work?

#1
Hi all. I'm going to be launching my fantasy LitRPG story here in January and was hoping I could get some fresh eyes on the synopsis. The synopsis of my current project is ... not its strongest suit, but a significant improvement from the original, so for this new project, I was hoping I could start off stronger by seeking feedback ahead of time. So without further ado, here's the draft of I have for the synopsis of The Second Magus:


"Aside from being a fire mage, Miro Kaldoun was a perfectly ordinary farm boy. In fact, he wasn’t even the only low-level mage in his village, with a couple more in the next village over. And where they dreamed of one day making a name for themselves on grand adventures, Miro was mostly content to stay where he was, and use his spells to impress the local girls.

When unexpected visitors arrive at their doorstep, Miro’s guardian gives him no choice but to be whisked away from his home onto a path to discover that much like the father he had never know, he is far more than ordinary mage. With a young ice mage by the name of Hima, and several of his father’s former comrades, Miro must learn whether he has what it takes to follow in his father’s footsteps.

But how closely should their paths follow? At the end of his father’s journey lay the deaths of both Miro’s parents and nearly Miro himself."



Let me know what you think or if you have any revision suggestions.

Re: Feedback on synopsis for upcoming work?

#2

DrakanWine Okay, I’ll give it a go! I think a couple of small changes could be good for it.

MichaelSilverV Wrote: "Aside from being a fire mage, Miro Kaldoun was a perfectly ordinary farm boy, aside from being a fire mage. In fact  He wasn’t even the only low-level mage in his village, with a couple more in the next village over. And But where they dreamed of one day making a name for themselves on grand adventures, Miro was mostly content to stay where he was, and use using his spells to impress the local girls.

When unexpected visitors arrive at their doorstep, Miro’s guardian gives him no choice but to be whisked away from his home onto a path to discover that, much like the father he had never known, he is far more than an ordinary mage. With a young ice mage named Hima and several of his father’s former comrades, Miro must learn whether he has what it takes to follow in his father’s footsteps.

But how closely should their paths follow, when at the end of his father’s journey lay the deaths of both Miro’s parents and nearly Miro himself?”



Let me know what you think or if you have any revision suggestions.



I feel pretty strongly about my changes to your first paragraph, mainly because I feel like it’s more ‘hooky.’ 

Second paragraph was just a little copy edit with typos and simplifying some of the language. 

Third paragraph, I’m not sure, I may have misinterpreted what you were saying. I do wonder if you should give away the deaths of Miro’s parents in the synopsis, it might be nicer for readers to just know that there’s danger and not that the parents die until it happens in story.

I hope this was helpful! 

Re: Feedback on synopsis for upcoming work?

#3
I would stay away from the "Was a perfectly ordinary/normal/plain/typical boy" line. Even in a blurb you can do better than cliché.  

You might want stronger verbs than passive voice for your blurb. "He was a boy" isn't very catchy. A verb is the word that is going to flavor your sentence, so pick something spicy for a blurb to get people to pay attention. 

This can be mostly one paragraph unless you want to add more details, especially if you cut down on the word fill.  


Quote:Miro Kaldoun was content to be a teenage fire mage in his little village.  He laughed at the antics of the other few low-level mages in his own village and those in the next village over. They dreamed of one day making a name for themselves on grand adventures but Miro was mostly happy to stay where he was, and use his spells to impress the local girls. That only lasts until unexpected visitors arrive at his doorstep, when Miro’s guardian gives him no choice but to be whisked away from his comfortable home onto a path to discover that, like his absent father, he is far more than ordinary mage. With the young ice mage Hima, and several of his father’s former comrades, Miro must learn whether he has what it takes to follow in his father’s footsteps.


Its a solid start to a blurb, but you might want to find a way to either cut the reference to his guardian, or mention he is a teen with a babysitter in the first sentence. You also might want to mention how his fathers comrades show up with him not ever knowing his father, unless they were the ones who came knocking. So you might want to add another sentence to the blurb, give a hint at the adventures to be had, or a goal they will be chasing, or just leave space to be "Authors Note" section after a short blurb. 

Either way, its a good blurb draft. Just my suggestions for a re-write. Goodluck, and happy writing! 

Re: Feedback on synopsis for upcoming work?

#4

"In a simple village, Miro Kaldoun was a low-level fire mage. Unlike his few fellow mages in the surrounding countryside, Miro was comfortable with his lot in life, working the farm and showing off his spells in front of the village maidens(or girls, whichever you prefer.). One might suspect Miro was strange in this manner, not wishing for adventures nor to make a name for himself like his magical peers, but content with his ordinary life.

But when unexpected visitors arrive, Miro's life is changed forever. His guardian gives him no choice but to be whisked away from his home. On this path will lead to discovery, leaving young Miro to realize that, much like the father he never knew, he is much more than he suspects. With old friends of his father and a young ice mage, Hima, Miro begins walking the path of his father. But will he have what it takes to follow in his father's footsteps

How close should he walk to the path of his father? At the end of his father's journey lay the deaths of both of Miro's parents... and nearly Miro himself."

Alrighty, I tried to keep your original intent mostly intact, and perhaps I completely botched it with flowery language, but here is my attempt :-) Take what I put above with a grain of salt, as I am not especially talented in the synopsis department—but I hope some of it may be of help.

Overall, I must say it sounds quite interesting and like a fun read.

Wishing you great sucess with your coming release!

~Rhea

Re: Feedback on synopsis for upcoming work?

#6
Apologies if this sounds harsh, I am just trying to help your story do well.

I found it weird that you called Miro both normal boy and a mage in the same sentence as usually those two things are mutually exclusive. Unless magic is common and everyone can use it, being able to do magic makes you unique. When later you imply that he is the only mage in his village it makes the idea of him being normal even more inconceivable. 

"When unexpected visitors arrive at their doorstep, Miro’s guardian gives him no choice but to be whisked away from his home"
I feel like there is a lot missing here. Is Miro's guardian one of his parents? If not what happened to them? You explain what happens to his parents later on but before that context this sentence is a little confusing. Also if he's an orphan that is another reason why he isn't normal. Why is it his guardian giving him no choice and not the unexpected visitors?

At the end you give a little tease and say how Miro's fathers journey killed both of his parents and almost him. Why did you not mention anywhere before this that he went on a journey with his parent's that killed both of them? This feels like an important detail to his backstory and would fit perfectly much earlier. Also if he went on this journey shouldn't he know that his father was different and then potentially be able to guess that he might be special as well?

I'd also like to say, don't be afraid to change some of the details in the actual story if it helps make the summary interesting as it will also help make the story better. For example, if you specifically said that he is a normal boy somewhere in the story, but want to change the summary to remove that part, it would be worth at minimum considering to make changes to the story.

I hope my advice helps, and good luck with your new story!

Re: Feedback on synopsis for upcoming work?

#7
I second Orenum, give more about the conflict, we don't have much at the moment.
I feel like I know more about the opening than the actual meat of the tale.

I'd reduce the initial paragraph to: Miro was mostly content to stay where he was, and use his spells to impress the local girls.

Then go into more about the inciting incident and actual conflict. You don't have to introduce other character names here, this is only to make people interested in the MC's adventure. End with the promise of tension and drama in a way that makes the audience ask a question.

This might help btw: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPOIHRSYFqc

Re: Feedback on synopsis for upcoming work?

#9
I want to thank you all for your contributions, they're really appreciated! I have taken all your feedback (in some cases more easily identifiable than in others) and have reworked it into the following.

"For fire mage Miro Kaldoun, the multitude of low-level magic users scattered around the countryside was a relief. He could leave the dreams of questing for glory to others, while he was content to live as a farm boy, and use his spells to impress the local village girls.

When unexpected visitors arrive at his doorstep, Miro has no choice but to be dragged into adventure, and comes to learn that much like the father he had never known, he is far more than an ordinary mage. With old enemies stirring, and the stability of the entire Kingdom hanging in the balance, Miro must quickly learn whether he has what it takes to follow in his father’s footsteps.

But how closely should he trace that path, considering that his own father’s story ended with the deaths of both Miro’s parents and nearly Miro himself?"



Admittedly probably has too much of the original in it, but based on your comments, miles ahead of what I had.

Thanks Again!