The purpose of a synopsis is to demonstrate a narrative has a coherent beginning, middle, and ending with a payoff denouement so that a screening reader doesn't have to read an entire manuscript to find out in the first place.
In the word "denouement's" definition is what a synopsis needs: the final outcome of the main dramatic complication. Beginnings are for introducing the main complication. Middles are for efforts to address the main complication. Endings are for outcomes of the main complication. Chapters are plots themselves, ideally depicting discoveries of and reversals from minor, building complications that have minor outcomes that lead toward a final outcome.
For a synopsis composition exercise, written or mental, pick a minor real-life complication. A flat tire, laid off from work, in-laws coming for a visit, rejected by a love interest, drought, meeting a stranger, leaving town for a strange destination, whatever. Discover the complication in the beginning. That's the inciting crisis to introduce.
Middle. Attempt to address the complication, fail, setback, reversal, learn something, discover something, encounter another reversal or a setback; discovery, reversal or reversal, discovery. Repeat as needed in order as circumstances dictate. Each chapter summary should depict at least one minor discovery and one minor reversal related to the main complication and build complication toward climax and decrease complication after climax toward denouement.
Climaxes occur when all salient information about a complication is known or discovered, efforts to address the complication are greatest, antagonism's forces of purpose and complication opposition are greatest, and the final outcome of the main complication is most in doubt.
The tragic crisis is what seems to put an end to efforts to address the complication, usually a seemingly insurmountable setback or reversal.
Ending. Then summarize the final crisis discovery that leads to the final outcome reversal. Summarize the outcome. The outcome should depict a credible, irrevocable, unequivocal transformation of a setting, idea, character, and/or event based on the main complication and from the final crisis.
Complication, Inciting crisis
Tragic crisis, Climax
Final crisis, Final outcome
Should single space or double space synopsis? Whatever the screening reader, agency, or publisher requests in their submission guidelines.
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