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70737 No. 70737
Please note: this isn’t a standard review thread. It’s not for entire fics, and anyone may feel free to chime in.

While we have many lovely review threads here, I’ve noticed that the fic synopsis is often overlooked (unless it’s been left out entirely, which does draw attention). The synopsis is one of the most important parts of a story, as it can determine whether or not the reader reads anything more. So, here’s a mini-review thread. Post tags and synopsis for your fic, and someone will tell you what you’ve done right and wrong.

My admittedly inexpert advice for synopses:
-Proofread. Proofread the buck out of your synopsis. If I see spelling or grammar errors, that doesn’t bode well for the fic proper.
-Keep it short. A few sentences should be enough. Don’t try to fit a whole chapter it there.
-Avoid rhetorical questions. This one’s more debatable, but I feel that rhetorical questions weaken synopses in the same way they weaken stories.
-Avoid parentheses, for the same reasons as above.

To start off, here are synopses for a couple of my stories. (Both of these are based on obscure indie RPGs. I’ve got other stuff in the pipeline, but these two are my focus right now. So hipster.) Please tell me what you think.

My Blissful Pony: Friendship is Giant Robots
[Dark] [Sci-Fi] [Crossover] [Sad] [Shipping]
Nightmare Moon has returned. Everypony over the age of eighteen has fallen into a sleep that will not end, and monsters from the stars ravage what's left of Equestria. The Elements of Harmony, led by a still-waking Princess Celestia, must protect those left awake. They must forge friendship into a weapon and defeat the terrors of the night once and for all. Based on Ben Lehman's Bliss Stage RPG, but written with an eye towards those without familiarity.
Additional tags: Relationships, Trauma, Loss, Hope, Bliss Stage

Ponies in the Vineyard
[Adventure]
Princess Celestia left this land long ago, unable to bear the sins of the mortal world. Her followers, the Faithful of the Princess of Light, try to live their lives in accordance with her teachings, but even the Faithful sometimes stray. When that happens, the Princess’s Watchdogs step in to heal the wounds—or cauterize them, if necessary. Sunshine Flutter is a new Dog, devoted to his faith but untested. Accompanying him are Dazzle Daring, a city unicorn turned devotee, and Marshal, a veteran Dog with a dark past. Inspired by D. Vincent Baker’s Dogs in the Vineyard RPG.
Additional tags: Old West Utah, with ponies.
Unspoiler all text  • Expand all images  • Reveal spoilers
>> No. 70778
Here's where Derpy-anon and I tossed some ideas back and forth at one another. >>67432 for example.
>> No. 70779
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70779
I approve this thread wholeheartedly.

>Nightmare Moon has returned. Everypony over the age of eighteen has fallen into a sleep that will not end, and monsters from the stars ravage what's left of Equestria. The Elements of Harmony, led by a still-waking Princess Celestia, must protect those left awake. They must forge friendship into a weapon and defeat the terrors of the night once and for all.
I cut out that last sentence because I have no idea what Bliss Stage is. I think your synopsis here doesn't actually get to the meat of your story, giant robots. The first three lines are just exposition (which I'm guessing you spent the first one to three chapters of your fic explaining or expanding on), and that last one makes me think of a +10 Sword Mace of Exposive Muffinry.

>Princess Celestia left this land long ago, unable to bear the sins of the mortal world.
Exposition in the description is something I disagree with. I'd say this could be made into a clause in front of another sentence.

>Her followers, the Faithful of the Princess of Light, try to live their lives in accordance with her teachings, but even the Faithful sometimes stray.
Big, long proper nouns. That's something that'd turn me away.

>When that happens, the Princess’s Watchdogs step in to heal the wounds—or cauterize them, if necessary.
I am now lost as to what your fic is about. I'm not actually going to read the next sentence.

>Sunshine Flutter is a new Dog, devoted to his faith but untested. Accompanying him are Dazzle Daring, a city unicorn turned devotee, and Marshal, a veteran Dog with a dark past.
At this point, I have moved onto the next thread/Equestria Daily post/FiMFiction... thingy. (Well, putting character bios in the description is something that should be reserved for character fics, I think.)
>> No. 71059
What the hay, I'll give this a whirl.

Into the Night

[Normal] shifting to [Dark] later, [Adventure] [Long].

Princess Celestia has long tried to provide the best possible quality of life to all peoples. There are however, those who would rather stay in their isolated past— those who, for inexplicable reasons, would rather live at a disadvantage than accept help. Then there are those who seek power over others, and nothing more: through manipulation, demagoguery, and honeyed promises, a force rises that poses a threat to all Nations, but whose eyes rest firmly on the Thrones of the Royal Sisters.

As the truth of the situation becomes apparent, the Nations realise that more is at stake than they could ever have imagined, but do they have time to save themselves and defeat the foe, or will the world be plunged into a darkness it has never known?


It's pretty chunky, but that is well cut down from what it was originally.
>> No. 71060
Alright, since I'll probably start posting my story on FIMFiction this Saturday, I might as well work on my summary.

Anthropology
[Comedy] [Adventure]

Lyra's always been different from other ponies. Perhaps it has something to do with her obsession with humans - sometimes she feels like she's the only pony who believes in or has even heard of the creatures. What's her connection to them?
>> No. 71061
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71061
>>71060
>What's her connection to them?

You want to do something more solid here. I don't know what your story is, but I jumped to three potential answers, which you will not be able to fulfill those expectations. You can't have her secretly be a human, be psychically connected to the human world, and live in the human world when she's asleep at the same time.

>>70779
>I cut out that last sentence because I have no idea what Bliss Stage is.
I happen to like to know what it is a story is crossing over with. There's enough abuse with the crossover tag as there is.
Cutting the second half of the sentence is fine though. Crossovers should be written with the clueless in mind. especially with RPGs.
>> No. 71070
[Dark Comedy][Shipping]

Me?
I'm Rainbow Dash.
Things are looking pretty up for yours truly: I've finally mastered the Sonic Rainboom and can pull it off at the drop of a feather, I just graduated with honours from the Cloudsdale University as a fully-licensed Weather Operator (who knew that I'd be a fast learner too?) and am on the short list for joining the legendary Wonderbolts!

Or at least, I was.
'Cept then I died.
But here's the kicker; I'm not supposed to be dead! Well, at least that's what Death told me. Queer pony, but he's got a cool fatalist outlook on life, or rather, the lack of it. Anyways, he won't give me the specifics, but I'm not scheduled to "buy the farm" (which sounds like it would be right up Applejack's alley) for a good, long time. In fact, this has never happened to him before! But, as much as I love doing what was before considered to be impossible, I never really wanted to be the best at [i]dying]/i].

Lucky for me, Death likes a good wager from time to time, so we've struck a deal: If I find my body first, he'll get the ol' ticker pumping again, but if he finds it before I do I'll be hitting heaven's hay a few seasons early.
Assuming I don't take him up on his offer to be a temp for him, of course (which, come on, you have to admit it'd be pretty cool to be the ponysonification of death).

I'm in a literal race against Death and, if I still had a heart, it'd be pounding with excitement.
>> No. 71079
>>70779
Thanks for your response, Derpy Anon!

>Last sentence
I think it's important to mention what I'm crossing over with and who did it, for credit where credit is due, especially since Bliss Stage is so obscure. Minty's probably right about leaving off the last part, though. Potentially reads as defensive, à la "He's not a Gary Stu," if not quite as bad.

>Exposition
In the story, I've managed to compress the necessary exposition into a 3,000-4,000 prologue. It makes for a pretty dense prologue, although I think I've managed to avoid "leaden."

>Lack of giant robots.
This is a good point. "Friendship is Giant Robots" and "Forge friendship into a weapon" are meant literally: the giant robots are made out of weaponized friendship. (Because MAGIC. And SCIENCE.) That connection should be made explicit.

I'd kind of like to see your take on the story proper, though this isn't the thread for that. Email's in my trip, if you want.

>Ponies in the Vineyard
I was much less sure what I wanted from this synopsis, and I think you've given me some thoughts on where to go with it. I do intend the story to be as much character- as plot-driven, so that's something for me to think about, too.

Thanks again, Derpy Anon. Glad you like the thread.
>> No. 71083
>>71059

Princess Celestia has long tried to provide the best possible quality of life to all peoples. There are however, those who would rather stay in their isolated past— those who, for inexplicable reasons, would rather live at a disadvantage than accept help. Then there are those who seek power over others, and nothing more: through manipulation, demagoguery, and honeyed promises, a force rises that poses a threat to all Nations, but whose eyes rest firmly on the Thrones of the Royal Sisters.

As the truth of the situation becomes apparent, the Nations realise that more is at stake than they could ever have imagined, but do they have time to save themselves and defeat the foe, or will the world be plunged into a darkness it has never known?

First, you end with a rhetorical question. I assume the answer is "Yes, the good guys win, eventually."

Secondly, I'm not really sure what your story is about. I see some sort of Big Bad, but I'm not sure how you're going to address it. The synopsis seems to indicate you could be focusing on the political aspects, which might be interesting. If you're doing the more standard heroic adventure, I'd like to hear a few names. No one gets named, with the exception of Celestia right in the beginning. It's all "people," "those," "a force," and "Nations." (Why is that capitalized, by the way?)

The synopsis sounds like bog-standard Hero's Adventure. What details make your story special?
>> No. 71084
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71084
>I happen to like to know what it is a story is crossing over with. There's enough abuse with the crossover tag as there is. Cutting the second half of the sentence is fine though. Crossovers should be written with the clueless in mind. especially with RPGs.
I like it when the synopsis is self-contained and the crossover source's title is in the Additonal Tags section on Equestria Daily or as a "Crossover/Based on" unless it brings up character names from the source, like "Twilight Sparkle and Optimus Prime forge an alliance to defeat Mojo Jojo." Since it doesn't sound like anything explicitly from Bliss Stage makes an appearance by name, I'd say the name "Bliss Stage" is a case of the first, which is why I cut it off my comment. I'd say that last sentence is fine as it is for FiMFiction, though. (Maybe as its own one-line paragraph? But that might make it seem too obtrusive. Hmmm...)

>Death in the Fast Lane
This was in the Story Forge, wasn't it? How's that going?

>Me?
>I'm Rainbow Dash.
>Things are looking pretty up for yours truly: I've finally mastered the Sonic Rainboom and can pull it off at the drop of a feather, I just graduated with honours from the Cloudsdale University as a fully-licensed Weather Operator (who knew that I'd be a fast learner too?) and am on the short list for joining the legendary Wonderbolts!
I'd put all these in the same paragraph without line breaks. I think they look nicer that way. Let's see...
>Me? I'm Rainbow Dash. Things are looking pretty up for yours truly: I've finally mastered the Sonic Rainboom and can pull it off at the drop of a feather, I just graduated with honours from the Cloudsdale University as a fully-licensed Weather Operator (who knew that I'd be a fast learner too?) and am on the short list for joining the legendary Wonderbolts!
Yup. Better.

And
>Weather Operator
sounds like a job more than a title in context. For example,
>I used to be a Bus Driver back in Cloudsdale.
>I used to be a bus driver back in Cloudsdale.

I think that's everything in that line. Oh, wait, parallelism.
>I've finally mastered...
>I just graduated...
>am...
You're missing an I before "am", it looks like?

>the Cloudsdale University
Maybe it's just a Canadian/Commonwealth thing, but I've never heard "the" precede a university name unless the name started with "University of", like "University of Cloudsdale."
>I went to the University of Cloudsdale.
>I went to Cloudsdale University.

>But here's the kicker; I'm not supposed to be dead!
This semicolon feels like it'd be be better off as a colon, but then you'd have a colon in every paragraph. Maybe change the first one to a period, combining the first part of that sentence with the sentence before it?
>Me? I'm Rainbow Dash, and things are looking pretty up for yours truly. I've...
>But here's the kicker: I'm not supposed to be dead! Well...

>a cool fatalist outlook on life, or rather, the lack of it.
For parallelism, "a cool fatalist outlook on life" maps to "the lack of it", but "the" and "it" are specific, while "a" is pretty open. How does
>a cool fatalist outlook on life, or rather, a lack of one.
sound to you? ...Well, now it sounds weird to me, because I don't see how a lack of a specific type of outlook on life can be considered cool... Oh, I see! The antecedent of "it" is "life", isn't it? A cool fatalist outlook on life, or rather, death. ...Hm, that doesn't so great, either. Fatalist outlook on death is kind of... given. I think. I mean, it's death. Ah, now I'm confused. I'm not a clever pony.

>If I find my body first, he'll get the ol' ticker pumping again, but if he finds it before I do I'll be hitting heaven's hay a few seasons early.
You have a comma between the if part and the then part before the conjunction, but not between the if and then parts after the conjunction. Might want to adding a comma here or removing the one there for standardizing. But looking at
>...if I still had a heart, it'd be pounding with excitement.
it looks like you'd be one to add a comma. Also, "a few seasons early" doesn't go well with "a good, long time" earlier.

>Assuming I don't take him up on his offer to be a temp for him, of course (which, come on, you have to admit it'd be pretty cool to be the ponysonification of death).
This entire sentence seems like an aside to me.

So, altogether (with modifications I'm too lazy to list)...
>Me? I'm Rainbow Dash.

>Things are looking pretty up for yours truly. I've finally mastered the Sonic Rainboom and can pull it off at the drop of a feather, I just graduated with honours from Cloudsdale University as a fully-licensed weather operator (who knew that I'd be a fast learner, too?) and I'm on the short list for joining the legendary Wonderbolts!

>'Cept then I died. But here's the kicker: I'm not supposed to be dead! Well, at least that's what Death told me. Queer pony, but he's got a cool fatalist outlook on death. Anyways, he won't give me the specifics, but I'm not scheduled to "buy the farm" (which sounds like it would be right up Applejack's alley) for a good, long time. In fact, this has never happened to him before! But, as much as I love doing what was before considered to be impossible, I never really wanted to be the best at dying.

>Luckily for me, Death likes a good wager from time to time, so we struck a deal: If I find my body first, he'll get the ol' ticker pumping again, but if he finds it before I do, I'll be hitting heaven's hay early (assuming I don't take him up on his offer to be a temp for him, which, come on, you have to admit would be pretty cool to be the equinification of death).

>I'm in a literal race against Death, and if I still had a heart, it'd be pounding with excitement.
S'what I think would be better. Of course, that's just me.

Hm. That looks more movie trailer than back-of-the-book synopsis, but I like it, and I think you used it to good effect. ...But I don't know how this would look on an Equestria Daily blog post or FiMFiction blurb section. It seems more suited for the first page after the inside cover of a book, anyways.

So how'd you say this was coming along again?

>>71079
Sorry, but sci-fi's not my jar of honey.
>> No. 71229
>>71083

>>First, you end with a rhetorical question. I assume the answer is "Yes, the good guys win, eventually."

Well… yes, but it’s very close and comes at a terrible cost.

>>Secondly, I'm not really sure what your story is about. I see some sort of Big Bad, but I'm not sure how you're going to address it.

How do you mean? How am I going to play the Big Bad?

The enemy in the fic is a coalition of factions from various species, each of whom feel they have been wronged by their home nation. They are led by a megalomaniacal and demagogic ex-Royal Guard officer, who thinks he can force the Princesses into submitting to him (it’d take a long time to explain how he plans to do this, but suffice to say he has magical back-up).

>>The synopsis seems to indicate you could be focusing on the political aspects, which might be interesting.

Yup, there’s a healthy dose of political intrigue in amongst the rest.

>>If you're doing the more standard heroic adventure, I'd like to hear a few names. No one gets named, with the exception of Celestia right in the beginning. It's all "people," "those," "a force," and "Nations." (Why is that capitalized, by the way?)

The story uses a LOT of OC’s, so I thought using names might be a little pointless, as no-one will know who they are anyway. Should I change this?

It’s a heroic story (adventure may be slightly inaccurate), yes, but it has several mildly heroic characters, rather than one super-hero. I capitalised nations because I felt it may be more fitting given that it is applied not just to countries, but species- I could be wrong there though.

>>What details make your story special?

OC Alicorn.

On a slightly more serious point… the plan for the story contains a lot of curve-balls, a fair few twists, general mystery (such as the identity of the bad guy), and, when the brown-stuff REALLY hits the fan, Celestia and Luna putting hoof to plot.

Oh, and an OC alicorn…
>> No. 71287
>>71084
'Kay, I can respect that. Thanks for the input on the synopses.

>>71229
Oh, yes, the OC alicorn story. Still haven't read it, but heard good things... still might want to skirt around that in the synopsis.

For names, you don't have to drop thirty OC's, but knowing the names of the major individuals, organizations, and countries would be nice.

For uniqueness, mystery and plot twists are nice, but you're still sounding like a basic Hero's Quest type thing. Political intrigue is something I don't see much, so you might want to emphasize that aspect. Find the core bits of your story that stand out, that make it more than just "War in Equestria" and "OC heroes and villains," and then tell us.
>> No. 71430
>>71287

I'll give a re-write a go, and get back to you...
>> No. 72324
I rewrote my synopsis recently and I've been looking for just this very thread. Opinions are very welcome. I'd like any tips you have to make this as eye-catching and engaging as possible. Since you've reviewed the story before, maybe you have some suggestions?

Staff Sergeant James Reichert, US Army, is serving a tour of duty in Iraq as a translator. At home he has a devoted wife, Sarah, and a beautiful daughter, Haley, who is an avid fan of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Haley makes him watch the show with her when he is on leave.

Until now, he considered My Little Pony to be just a show for little girls, filled with group hugs and mushy things like fashion and friendship. But when he's killed in action trying to save a local kid from the crossfire, he finds that he's been "rewarded" with a second chance in his daughter's fantasy world.

Now, James must face the crushing realization that Equestria isn't as Utopian as he thought it was, and find a way to live in this harshly real world. He'll find himself in the middle of a plot to fundamentally change Equestria for the worse, and that he's the only one to see it coming.
>> No. 72471
(Sad) (Adventure)

When Spike is curious about Twilight's pile of scrolls on her writing desk, he decides to take a peek. When he does, however, he is surprised to the point of lighting it afire, and while he tries to blow it out, sends it to Celestia. His life will change completely, turning him into more than a baby dragon--- The most powerful dragon in the world of Equestria....
>> No. 72512
Synopsis review, you say? I'll have a go.

Warpony 4k

[Sci-Fi] [Crossover] [Grimdark] [Alternate Universe]

Synopsis: The Holy Imperium of Equuleus encounters the Citadel Council and discovers that not only are they one of many "civilized" species in the Galaxy, but that there are evils more ancient and potent than even Chaos itself.
>> No. 73235
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73235
Alright, been having some trouble with this. After seeing mention of haiku in the Omnibus today, I came up with this:
>Old love or new friend?
>A choice unknown, a heart torn.
>One mimics the other.

However, the more "serious" one (actually just the one I've used more) is this:
>Lyra leads a solitary existence in Ponyville, but is faced with a surprise choice when confronted by one of her few friends in a way she had never noticed.

Just for reference, this is a shipping story that teases the reader with a little LyraxBon Bon and ends with LyraxOctavia. Links to both chapters below for those interested.
Chapter 1: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XgEo7TkaobGFIvGHBPqGHNmMqTFFvMKcHfFZxDjMsVM/edit?hl=en_US
Chapter 2: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1lGNRE3k3J2O0qQgKY-yL_n4s2kOLG5OWS2cpGMQeKrA/edit?hl=en_US
>> No. 73514
Okay, I've wanted to improve my synopsis for a while now, so I'd love some advice.

Composure
[Normal] [Shipping]
Description: We all wear a mask called composure, beneath which hides a heart that twists with guilt and hidden feelings. Regal as she is, Princess Celestia is no exception. What might be revealed should circumstances cause this mask to slip - or break?
Additional Tags: Nightmare, Guilt, Secrets, Comfort, Trust.

See, I feel a little bit stuck, because A) it's a character study mostly, and plays around with the idea of personas the characters wear around each other, and B) there's a twist in the first chapter I feel I cannot allude to, for fear it will lessen the shock value. After that point, the reader is invested in the fic, and a synopsis seems moot. I'd like to actually explain it's a Twilestia fic though, so far I'm relying on the title image.

Chapter 1 here if you want to see what I mean: >>66024
>> No. 73577
I find my description somewhat... lacking.

The Book of Friendship

[Grimdark][Comedy][Crossover]

Description: Twilight Sparkle sent many letters to Princess Celestia detailing what she learned about the magic of friendship. These letters, along with many other writings, were collected into a book. The "Book of Friendship," as it was called, contained many teachings of love and tolerance, sharing and caring.

And an organization based around this book sprang up, called the Fraternity of the Joyous Friends of Princess Celestia. And whenever a Brother (or Sister) comes of age, it is their task to spread the word of the magic of friendship across Equestria and beyond.

This is the story of Brother White and Brother Scroll, two young stallions who have been tasked with spreading the word to Earthquake Island. Unfortunately, Earthquake Island is not particularly interested in party games.

Additional Tags: Two Ambiguously Gay Mormon Ponies
>> No. 73579
>>73577
I should also include links:

Chapter 1: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1EJ8wXKdXBCRuwIy7UQBIw3IjP7dA-pznknPXGo-3hzs/edit?hl=en_US

And chapter 11, which has similar introductory qualities, but sucks less: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1s5Roq7T99VBos4cPw8GFDPAoxUv4AAQEDFlEBf2_5Tg/edit?hl=en_US
>> No. 73588
Here's a couple.
#1
"Welcome to New Whinnipeg, home of the 'neo-classical' music group VOLT. We pride ourselves in producing the finest quality tobacco products, and providing the widest range of self defense armaments available on ANY Confederate station! We hope you enjoy your stay!"

That was one of the first things I heard upon entering Station 13. Funny how they'd boast my own band . . . Not that they really cared, hay, I couldn't possibly care. Everything went to hell just a week later, so I guess it doesn't really matter.

My name is Vinyl Scratch, and I bucked up. Big time.

#2
Blissful Diane Sundae is a pony that likes to throw parties. One thousand and twenty two years ago, she killed a colt named Pokey Pierce for 'ruining' one of these parties. Twenty one and a half years later, she falls madly in love with him. One year later, she gives her life to protect him from a grave threat.

Today, she starts remembering.

The machinations of gods, and life not of this world, will be witnessed in retrospect. Sinister plots once abandoned and forgotten will reappear, and only with the wisdom obtained in death will they be stopped.
A love transparent will rekindle.
A promise will be kept.

(Note, they are not for the same fic.
>> No. 75888
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75888
I can totally give this a try.

Title: Legend of the Five Ponies

Tags: [Crossover][Adventure][Grimdark][Shipping]

Synopsis: In the Empire of Ponyville under the rule of Empress Celestia, the 6 Greater Clans have to fight not only the threat that is Everfree Forest and its ruler, Dark Lord Discord, but they also have to handle their inner conflicts and clan rivalries.

I considered the synopsys appropriate at first, being a basic idea of what the whole saga will be about, but I wonder if it's applealing or could be improved.
>> No. 75898
I'd like to get in on this, for sure. The synopsis is one of two major weak points in my attention-grabbers, so any help would be appreciated.

Tags: Adventure

Synopsis:

If what you knew could save the lives of countless others, wouldn't you try to act?

Sand Shaper knows of one future that could yet come to pass. Soliciting help from the throne, she strives to avert disaster while protecting those she cares about, in the process learning the constraints of fate and the limits of friendship.
>> No. 75910
Holy Threadurrection!

I've got a new version of my synopsis for you Echoes, if you're still running this thread.

Into the Night

[Normal] shifting to [Dark] later, [Adventure] [Long].

A threat to Equestria is revealed when Princess Luna is attacked while returning from a day trip. Though the immediate fenemy is defeated, it is soon apparent that there is more to the attack than meets the eye.

Through manipulation, demagoguery, and honeyed promises, a force has risen which poses a threat to all nations, but whose eyes rest firmly on the Thrones of the Royal Sisters.

As the situation advances, it’s down to Commander Brighthorn and the Royal Guards to find the foe, before the foe can bring their plan to fruition.

****

Thanks in advance.
>> No. 75926
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75926
I wonder where Echoes went? This thread was such a great idea. I'd hate to see it go to waste.

Note: The Duet Never Played is the only fic out of the ones in this post that I've actually read from start to finish. Skipped over [Grimdark] fics for the same reason I don't look at Sci-fi.


>>72471 (Untitled, LTD)
>When Spike is curious about Twilight's pile of scrolls on her writing desk, he decides to take a peek.
Okay...

>When he does, however, he is surprised to the point of lighting it afire, and while he tries to blow it out, sends it to Celestia.
O... kay...

>His life will change completely, turning him into more than a baby dragon--- The most powerful dragon in the world of Equestria....
Ehhh, no thanks. Your first sentence is kind of lackluster. Your second sentence is also pretty bland in both wording and story-content. Your third sentence tells me that your fic follows an old cliche Chosen One plotline. I don't think I can help you here.


>>73235 (The Duet Never Played)
>Old love or new friend?
>A choice unknown, a heart torn.
>One mimics the other.
I'm assuming this goes with a [Shipping] tag, that Lyra and Octavia picture, and Lyra, Octavia, and Bon-Bon in the character tags at the bottom of the Equestria Daily post or FiMFiction character tag list. In which case, the picture contradicts the idea that there's a choice, and the description contradicts the fic because your fic is mostly "Lyra goes to see Octavia and Bon-Bon is a minor character"... Well, I suppose that's an issue for your reviewers to look at. If the fic actually revolved around Lyra's choice, then I'd say the first two sentences would fit nicely (maybe put a comma after "love"), but
>One mimics the other.
This makes no sense to me.

>Lyra leads a solitary existence in Ponyville, but is faced with a surprise choice when confronted by one of her few friends in a way she had never noticed.
Seeing as how your story is Lyra x Octavia, this makes little sense. I say the haiku is better as a synopsis.

While we're at it, your title seems to have little to do with the fic unless you're driving the Lyra x Octavia as hard as you can. In which case, the synopsis needs to show that.


>>73514 (Composure)
>We all wear a mask called composure, beneath which hides a heart that twists with guilt and hidden feelings. Regal as she is, Princess Celestia is no exception. What might be revealed should circumstances cause this mask to slip - or break?
If your plot twist is that the fic is Twilestia, then I think you're losing readers by not mentioning it. Also, if it is, the [Shipping] and character tags on Equestria Daily or FiMFiction will likely give it away anyways. Though, given the popularity of this fic, I think everyone who wants that ship has already read it and is awaiting your next chapter. Though it looks to me like your synopsis is more like an opening to a high/secondary school English class essay than a synopsis. Also, you ask a question without answering it. You might answer it in the fic, but if those reading the synopsis can come up with answers of their own that satisfy themselves, they won't need your answers and won't read your fic. Probably.

That's what I'm saying without having actually read the first chapter from start to finish. I remember something about dreams and nightmares, but stopped before any shipping happened. Looking at your synopsis, I'm fairly certain your popularity came from the actual writing, the fairly unique ship, and word-of-mouth recommendations like that one thread on FiMChan.


>>73577 (The Book of Friendship)
>Twilight Sparkle sent many letters to Princess Celestia detailing what she learned about the magic of friendship. These letters, along with many other writings, were collected into a book. The "Book of Friendship," as it was called, contained many teachings of love and tolerance, sharing and caring.
The second sentence seems like it could be merged into the first or third sentence. That's what the verb being "were" tells me, anyways. Also, length + exposition in a synopsis = Derpy wants to move onto something else.

>And an organization based around this book sprang up, called the Fraternity of the Joyous Friends of Princess Celestia.
"Sprang up" seems like a pretty weak verb phrase, and the comma after "up" seems like it shouldn't be there. And the modifier of
>called the Fraternity of the Joyous Friends of Princess Celestia
seems pretty misplaced. I think you need to put it closer to the thing it's modifying.
>And an organization
And you're starting a sentence with a conjunction. Okay in prose when done properly, not very okay in synopses when you're trying to get readers. It makes it sound like "And then this happened."

>And whenever a Brother (or Sister) comes of age, it is their task to spread the word of the magic of friendship across Equestria and beyond.
The parentheticals seems largely unnecessary, and "across Equestria and beyond" sounds odd. If they were crossing Equestria to get to the other side, then sure, but if they're starting in Equestria, then... Across Equestria's borders, maybe? But that's the same as "beyond", isn't it?

>This is the story of Brother White and Brother Scroll, two young stallions who have been tasked with spreading the word to Earthquake Island. Unfortunately, Earthquake Island is not particularly interested in party games.
Not sure about the "This is the story" part. Even the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air opening had the word "now" in front of it. And this third paragraph seems kind of disjointed from the previous two. There's a flow of thought between the first and second, but not really between the second and third. I think you need a better transition than "This is the story".

I'm guessing this is more [Comedy] than [Grimdark].


>>73588 (Untitled, Roan)
I can't say anything of much use because lack of tags, except the bold and line breaks on the second make me want to move onto the next fic. Oh, and you put commas before conjunctions when they don't separate independent clauses or items in a list. Those should be removed.

The first one... I don't know what's going on. Is this a Fallout: Equestria side story? Comma splice in
>Not that they really cared, hay, I couldn't possibly care.
and
>self defense
is usually hyphenated.

>Funny how they'd boast my own band . . . Not that they really cared, hay, I couldn't possibly care.
This style of ellipsis really bothers me for some reason. If you go to any published book, you... see that kind of ellipsis. You'll also see a font that isn't Times New Roman, where the dots in the ellipses aren't spaced out as much. (Or maybe they have their own very fat ellipsis character with the spaces.)

The second one's first paragraph reminds me of that time I ate those moldy muffins.
>twenty two
>Twenty one
These should be hyphenated.

So yeah, in neither of the synopsis can I tell what the fic is about. Unless the second one should be taken at face value, in which case, I guess I'm not your audience.


>>75898 (Untitled, Dramkire)
>If what you knew could save the lives of countless others, wouldn't you try to act?
If what you... Wait, what? Assuming you meant "what if", that still doesn't seem to follow...
Ohhh. The "what" shouldn't be there. I get it. That makes a lot more sense. Why would you use "wouldn't" instead of "would"? "Wouldn't" makes it sound rhetorical. "Would" makes it sound less rhetorical. ...Wait, that's still bad. Open questions like this sound like ways to head a high school essay, not a way to get readers' attentions.

>Sand Shaper knows of one future that could yet come to pass.
Could... yet? I am confused.

>Soliciting help from the throne, she strives to avert disaster while protecting those she cares about, in the process learning the constraints of fate and the limits of friendship.
I stopped reading this sentence somewhere around "strives to avert" because all your big words made my eyes defocus.

>>75910 (Into the Night)
I saw
>[Normal] shifting to [Dark] later, [Adventure] [Long]
and went "Too many tags, no thanks."
>> No. 75958
Minecrafters tale of equestria.
[crossover]

As myths collide with legends, as brine's stir, as thunder roars, and lighting blinds, six ponies shall join forces with 4 men, to vanquish an ancient evil from another world.
Pigs will fly, zombies will groan, and the first goodbye for the 10 heroies, until they kick it up a notch.
Will they live, or will they die? The fate is up to a hero’s brine.
>> No. 75961
>>75958
>As myths collide with legends
What does that actually mean? I understand it in a comedic sense . . .
>as brine's stir
Eh, I don't think you should mention brine twice. Maybe, as seas stir?
>as thunder roars,
Meh. This is alright . . .
>and lighting blinds,
First, "and lightning blinds,"
Thematically, whatever.
>six ponies shall join forces with 4 men, to vanquish an ancient evil from another world.
This is cliched. Also, four, not 4.
>Pigs will fly,
Implies comedy. Alright.
>zombies will groan,
Comedy again . . .
>and the first goodbye for the 10 heroies,
Heroes, and, what? What?
>until they kick it up a notch.
This pun isn't very good . . .
>Will they live, or will they die?
Meh.
>The fate is up to a hero’s brine.
(this sounds like a sex joke)
>> No. 75985
File 132565292276.png - (58.32KB , 500x455 , tumblr_lr0f3hDwks1qaha6c[1].png )
75985
Hit me with yer best shot.

Festival
[Shipping], [Slice of Life], touches of [Sad]

Synopsis: Trixie, recently having lost all her posessions during a certain Ponyville incident, manages to find a lucky job as a performer for Equestria's most anticipated holiday. While there, she discovers something precious to her survived her caravan's destruction... and is currently in the possession of a familiar face.

Now, Trixie's determined to retrieve what's rightfully hers. But little does she know that her attempts will set off a chain of events, leading to what could either be the greatest or the worst thing that's ever happened to her...
>> No. 75989
Title: A Darker Equestria
Tags: [Adventure][Light-Grimdark(?)]
It should be noted that I haven't quite decided if this fits with grimdark, put probably not.
Synopsis: Years ago, the stars disappeared from the skies of Equestria, and nopony has ever figured out why. Now, many doubt that anything but the moon ever hung in the void above the world at all. With Celestia fallen into a deep coma from the absence of the sun and Luna struggling to keep life on the planet sustained with only the moon, it's up to a scholar from Canterlot and his small group of friends to return the stars to their rightful place in the sky.

I really hope this isn't horrible. I've unwillingly adopted a new writing style that everyone seems to enjoy, but it doesn't feel quite right, so I'm always a little doubtful.
>> No. 75991
>>75926
>Guessing it's more [comedy] than [grimdark]

Yeah... honestly, I'm not sure. What do you say about a story that in one chapter has both gay jokes and a kid getting his wings hacked off?
>> No. 76002
Hi everyone! I'm not so good at thesis statements or synopses, any help would be appreciated. I couldn't decide between the two...

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained
[Normal]
Torrent and Dew have been robbing banks for the past month with few consequences, but when old friends work against them and the jaws of a trap close in around the pair, will their luck run out?

Torrent and Dew have been robbing banks for the past month with few consequences, but when old friends work against them and the jaws of a trap close in around the pair, will they be on the right side when they snap shut?
>> No. 76003
>>75926

>>75910 (Into the Night)
I saw
>[Normal] shifting to [Dark] later, [Adventure] [Long]
and went "Too many tags, no thanks."

Three and a half tags is too many? Really?
>> No. 76004
Mm. I will take what you've mentioned into consideration. Thank you for your time.
>> No. 76069
File 132569637764.png - (34.88KB , 195x171 , 132313130892.png )
76069
>>75991
Is it played for laughs? If not, then mood whiplash? I don't really know.

>>76003
It wasn't the tags as much as it was the words in between tags, which I interpreted as tags. If this
>[Normal] shifting to [Dark] later, [Adventure] [Long]
was exactly how it appeared on an Equestria Daily post, I wouldn't look at it. (Though, seeing as how it's a [Dark][Adventure] fic, I still wouldn't have looked at it, so my viewpoint is more or less void, really.)

[Long] isn't really a tag as much as it is an additional tag, and your synopsis should indicate how long it's going to be, anyways. If it were
>[Adventure]
or
>[Dark][Adventure]
or
>[Normal][Adventure]
I'd think that'd be more attractive to viewers than
>[Normal][Dark][Adventure][Long]
or
>[Normal][Dark][Adventure]
or
>[Normal][Later Dark][Adventure].
Not to mention [Normal] and [Dark] kind of conflict.

Of course, that's all just my opinion, and I'm not a clever pony.
>> No. 76086
>>76069

It's a hard one to categorize, from my view.

It starts out as a fairly standard hero story/adventure/something-or-other, and then turns considerably darker in the... second half to final third.

And yes, it is a War in Equestria fic... with an oc alicorn (good guy, non-sue).
>> No. 76263
Bumping this thing, because this is awsome.
>> No. 76477
>>76263
Yes it is.
>> No. 76496
>Sorry if this is a double post, ponychan glitched.
Since no one seems to be reviewing any (which is the point of this thread), let me do one.

>>76002

>Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained

Titles should be an indicator of what the story is about. Your title suggest an experiment or dangerous expedition to find something out

>[Normal]

Gonna need a few more tags. There is no "normal", as that implies that it goes with the standard set by other stories. MLP fics are WAY too varied to be able to lump together. It could be a normal grimdark, where there is a huge battle and the Mane 6 do some operative stuff and win the war single-hoofedly. A normal human-in-Equestria where some depressed human dies/magically teleports into Equestria and lands near Ponyville, where he parties with Pinkie and such and the story doesn't go anywhere...

Sorry, but the point is, normal doesn't mean anything. You also need the tone (comedy, grim, dark, grimdark, etc), genre (steampunk, sci-fi, slice of life, etc) and other relevant information where a fan of one of those can recognize your story as something they would enjoy.

>Torrent and Dew have been robbing banks for the past month with few consequences, but when old friends work against them and the jaws of a trap close in around the pair, will their luck run out?

Torrent and Dew are... interesting names. Might want to include first/last.

Robbing banks is rather... violent. Since you put [normal], I have to assume we're talking only the shown Equestria straight from the show, where it is almost perfectly peaceful.

"old friends work against them" is rather uninteresting. Try "betray" or something to make your synopsis more likely to draw the potential reader in, the point of a synopsis.

"jaws of a trap" That comes out of nowhere and is, again, uninteresting. Why would T and D be trapped? Is their old friend under cover? Do they have rivals? You need to provide context so that it means something. No on knows who T and D are, and no one cares about them getting trapped.

"luck run out"? Rather cliched, if you ask me. It could be better by mentioning that T and D are a rather successful pair, so they have luck to lose in the first place.

>... will they be on the right side when they snap shut?

Better, as in it plays with the "jaws" thing mentioned earlier, but not by much.

Overall, 2/5. You do have an interesting concept for a genre I have no interest in, but you present it poorly. Yes, it's a synopsis, but you need to make the reader care about your story before they read, or they will never click on it in the first place.

What I would do:
>Rough Torrent and Morning Dew, thinking life on the harsh streets of Manehatten just wasn't cutting it, decided to go for a career change in the business of theft. Surprising even themselves, they had gone on for several months without getting caught. Some call it skill, others call it beginners' luck. But when old friends show their true colors and the police start catching on, the jaws of a trap close in around the pair. Will their luck run out?

Notes about mine: I am a complete amateur (I put mine in here, which the last reviewer skipped >>72512, because I don't feel comfortable with mine), so don't take me too seriously. Second, I suck at pony names, I know mine are bad.
>> No. 76518
>>76496
Thanks for the detailed review!

Also...
>Second, I suck at pony names, I know mine are bad.

I swear, names are the hardest part. In the end I just said screw it and used a filetype and a bad pun (dew process).
>> No. 76959
OH HI GUYS. So yeah, I haven't done much with this thread. Lookin' to fix that now.

Here's the list of currently unreviewed synopses.

>>72324 "The Weight of the Sun," Logician
>>72512 "Warpony 4k," booredhooman
>>75888 "Legend of the Five Ponies," Simon_o_sullivan
>>75910 "Into the Night," TheDamnedScribe
>>75985 "Festival," Silverquill
>>75989 "A Darker Equestria," LT Halle

If you're missing from the list, post and say so. If you'd like to add another synopsis, you can do that too.

(If you're a reviewer and you want to join in? Go right on ahead.)
>> No. 76964
>>75910
I got this one
>>75910
DISCLAIMER: DON'T TAKE MY WORD AS FACT

>Into the Night
The story doesn't seem Luna centered, not sure why the title is night specific.

>[Normal] shifting to [Dark] later, [Adventure] [Long].
You need to decide what tags to put. You can't have conditions on them for FimFiction or EquestriaDaily.

>A threat to Equestria is revealed when Princess Luna is attacked while returning from a day trip.
Day trip? I guess that means a trip during the day, which really doesn't need to be explained.

>Though the immediate fenemy ENEMY is defeated, it is soon apparent that there is more to the attack than meets the eye.
ALWAYS PROOFREAD YOUR SYNOPSIS.
Also, how is it apparent? Are they immediately shown? You're giving the plot away.

>Through manipulation, demagoguery, and honeyed promises, a force has risen which poses a threat to all nations, but whose eyes rest firmly on the Thrones of the Royal Sisters.
What does demagoguery even mean? Use language your audience understands.
Holy commas, Batman! You could chop that into 2-3 sentences.
I don't think throne should be capitalized.
Throne isn't quite the right word it seems; that implies that the position is sought after.

>As the situation advances, it’s down to Commander Brighthorn and the Royal Guards to find the foe, before the foe can bring their plan to fruition.
The second comma is unneeded, but good sentence otherwise.

Overall, 3/5. I had to look for problems. There were problems, which takes off one point, though.
The other point taken off is the lack of interest your synopsis garnered from me.

What I would do:
A threat to all of Equestria is revealed when Princess Luna is ambushed while returning to the castle. Though the immediate threat is diminished, it is quickly realized that it was more than a simple attempt on Luna's life. Rising from the very roots of the Equestrian civilization itself through subtle manipulation and false promises, this new foe is a threat to all, but especially to the Royal Sisters. As the situation tenses and suspicion is thrown around, Commander Brighthorn and the Royal Guards must stop this unseen threat before it's too late.

Not the best, but it's the best I could come up with.
>> No. 77031
>>72324 "The Weight of the Sun," Logician
>Utopian
utopian. Yeah, some spellcheckers dislike the uncapitalized version; screw ‘em. Utopia stopped being a proper noun years ago.
>and that he’s
and he’ll be

You also shift tenses in a way that makes me a little uncomfortable. Past to present tense is fine, but the last bit in future tense... Eh, it works fine, just bugs me for some reason. Might be that little inconsistency at the tail end coloring my perception of the rest, I dunno. Anyway.

I think the biggest problem here is that your synopsis is too long, and gives excessive weight to James’s past. HiE writers like to emphasize how their human’s different from the standard fare, yeah [/probable overgenereralization], and that’s fine to an extent, but the price of that exposition here is that you beef up your synopsis with character info rather than plot. As I recall, your story’s primarily plot-driven, so I’d like to see the Big Bad’s intentions/plans in a little more detail, rather than the ominous vagueness so far. Even if that means you have to trim down the character bits.
>> No. 77032
>>72512 "Warpony 4k," booredhooman

I have only secondhand familiarity with Warhammer 40000 (mostly what I pick up from TVTropes), but I’ll give this a go. A good crossover should be able to draw readers unfamiliar with the other universe anyway. So!

Firstly, why’s it 4k instead of 40k—is that order of magnitude difference intentional (and if so, why?) or is it just a typo?

The [Crossover] and [AU] tags seem redundant to me. Crossovers can be written starting from show canon, but the introduction of such drastic changes turns it into an AU pretty quickly. On the other hand, your starting point is an AU, so the tag is useful to indicate that... Eh. I’m rambling here. It bugs me a bit, but it’s probably nothing.

I think the problem here is that your synopsis is too short. It’s very businesslike. If you had a long list of fics lined up, in an author compilation doc or a WH40K crossover compilation or whatevs, then it’d be acceptable, because the point there would be that the people reading it already know either you as an author and are looking for more stuff by you, or they’re looking for WH40K crossovers in general and just want a quick idea of what your story’d be about. As a synopsis for attracting new readers, it doesn’t work for me.
(Also, while the synopsis as a whole is too short—one sentence—it’s a somewhat long and unwieldy sentence.)
There’s a skeleton here, but there ain’t enough flesh on them bones. While potentially attractive to people already looking for 40K crossovers, as a reader unfamiliar with the universe it doesn’t draw me in. The ancient, potent evil is a worn-out trope when left undescribed, as you’ve got here, and... I’d like to see some characters. Some closer description. Zoom in.
>> No. 77033
It's similar in many ways to my second... so. Huh. Anyway.

>>75888 "Legend of the Five Ponies," Simon_o_sullivan

>Empire of Ponyville
From what we’ve seen in canon, Ponyville’s a small and fairly unimportant town. Why would a great empire choose to name itself after someplace like that?
>6
six (Six, if you want, although all the proper nouns being thrown around make me feel a lil’ bit ergh.)

As with the last synopsis, and as a reader unfamiliar with Legend of the Five Rings, I’m not particularly hooked. Lots of proper nouns, quick mentions of “the threat that is [X],” “inner conflicts,” and “clan rivalries,” one long sentence, not a whole lot of detail. I like to see character names. I like to know details about conflicts and threats. Not, like, superfine details or anything, it’s still a synopsis and should be kept fairly short and sweet and all that, but zoom in on your plot. Right now I feel like I’m in a spaceship—well, no, that’s exaggerating, but I feel like I’m in an airplane or something at least, looking down at a bunch of colored dots moving around in a vaguely warlike fashion. Lots of people having blurry conflicts, and I’m far enough away that I don’t care a whole lot.
>> No. 77044
>>77031

Thank you so much, and welcome back. I haven't seen you around in a while.

The reason for the info dump is because from a few different reviewers, I detected a common undertone of "The less we see of Iraq, the better." Accordingly, I trimmed and distilled the prologue and worked most of the prerequisite information into the synopsis.

The new synopsis is part of a complete rewrite spawned by a hurtfully cynical (yet very informative after a month of thought) review and subsequent EqD rejection.

If you're reviewing again, would you mind taking a third look?
>> No. 77062
File 132614541969.png - (43.58KB , 249x315 , My bearded ponysona.png )
77062
>>77033

Okay, I guess I have to work a bit with it.

My problem was that it's intended to be quite a long story, and I'm apparently horrible at selling stories. So I guess I'm changing Ponyville for Equestria and... Well, I'll try to work something better. I'll put my beard to work.
>> No. 77113
File 132616327848.png - (218.23KB , 702x395 , tumblr_lv709jtPRV1r692m1o1_1280.png )
77113
>>77032
First of all, thank you for the review. You did a nice job of finding problems, but I need help improving them. Here's what I have:

>In the grim darkness of the fifth millennia, The Holy Imperium of Equuleus has been at constant war for survival for over three thousand years. But when it encounters the Citadel Council, they discover not only a true chance for peace, but also a chance for destruction. In order to secure allies, veteran Space Marine Malleus Titus joins the veteran human Commander John Shepard on a hunt for the the biggest traitor in Council history. However, soon into the journey, it is discovered that there are evils more ancient and potent than Chaos and more dangerous than the Eldar.

I don't want you to write my synopsis for me, but I would like suggestions or pointing in the right direction rather than just "do better".

Pic because /fic/ needs more pics.
>> No. 77138
I'm willing to give them, but I'm not sure how helpful they'll be. My own perception of my reviewing is that when I look at very similar iterations of the same thing, I tend to skim, leading to less helpful feedback. If no one pops in to help you, though, I'll go ahead and take on re-reviews.
>> No. 77151
My opinions on >>75985 "Festival," Silverquill

>Ellipses
You've got two of them, and they should both go. They're intended as mysterious, dramatic pauses, and I don't think it works. Ellipses are easy to make melodramatic.
>Trixie [...] manages
The more common structure would be "Having recently lost [...], Trixie manages etc." Even so, it's a rather denser sentence than I'd like. Lots of modifiers floating around.
> posessions
possessions (spellcheck is your friend, at least most of the time)
>something precious [...] is currently in the possession of a familiar face. 
This sentence is structured oddly. Right now, it could suggest that Trixie lost her beloved face-stealing demon.
>the greatest or the worst thing
While this sets the stakes high for Trixie, it's too vague for my tastes.
>> No. 77153
>>75989 "A Darker Equestria," LT Halle
>>77113 "Warpony 4k," boredhooman
>> No. 77327
A Hop, Skip, and a... Slide?

[Adventure][Dark][Crossover]

Magic and technology have coexisted for nearly a hundred years thanks to a bill enacted by Equestria's ruling body seventy-five years ago. Now, as the bill wears out, an eager Twilight delves into literature on the subject. However, Twilight's search will send her and her friends on an adventure across worlds, where everything they know about their society may be changed. Inspired by the sci-fi TV series Sliders, but written for anyone to understand.

Additional Tags: Alternate Realities, Sliding, Finding Home
>> No. 77428
I redrafted the synopsis, refocusing it more towards plot information with your advice in mind.

Would you mind skimming it briefly?

Staff Sergeant James Reichert never gave much thought to his daughter’s Saturday-morning cartoons. Equestria was only ever a fantasy land to him, its polychromatic inhabitants simply the product of an overactive imagination[", and maybe an acid trip or two"? Is that too much?]. That is, until one fateful day, when he’s killed by an insurgent sniper during an ambush in a small Iraqi town.

He awakes in a dark sacrifice ritual conducted by fanatical cultist ponies for an unknown purpose. On top of that, political revolution is sparking in large cities throughout Equestria. Utopian fantasy becomes harsh reality as James finds himself the sole witness of a plot to change Equestria for the worse, and he commits himself to preserving the fantasy land of his daughter’s favorite TV show, at any cost.


I'm a little concerned that "one fateful day" might be too cliche, but I'm not sure. I meant to do a little TLUS with "cartoons"/"TV show" to establish parallel structure and juxtaposition simultaneously.

I really want to get this right, and really sell this fic from the get-go.
>> No. 78179
I've now cleared out the queue. I rather liked these four synopses; these reviews are composed only of the mistakes I found. Consider anything I didn't mention to be something I liked.
>> No. 78181
>>75989 LT Halle "A Darker Equestria”

I’ve seen a few different variants on the [Grimdark] tag: Standard [Grimdark], of course, but also the more specific [Grimdark-War], [Grimdark-Death], [Grimdark-Plague], and then tags like [Grim], [Dark], [Grimlight]. And others I’m not remembering right now. Adding a postscript to your synopsis, along the lines of “rated Grimlight for comedic dismemberment” or whatever’s appropriate, might be useful if you’re worried about the tag.

>world at all.
world. (“At all” modifies “anything,” but is both too far away from the noun it modifies and not all that necessary in the first place.)

So, a few things bug me about this synopsis.
“Years ago” is more’n a little bit vague. Are we talking two years, twenty years, or a whole thousand years ago?
You say “the stars disappeared,” and the sun’s gone too. Sure, the sun’s technically a star as well, but you might want to call it out specifically.
The moon has no light of its own; it’s only reflecting sunlight. Although you might change that because magic, irl the moon’d go dark not long after the sun. Unless the sun’s merely blocked, and not actually extinguished, I suppose. This also ties into the X years ago thing—how long’s Equestria been living on just moonlight?
Celestia in a coma bugs me for some reason, because it seems... I dunno, not enough, maybe? Fictional comas are so reversible, and the sun and stars are gone entirely. Although I suppose this is heavily dependent on headcanon, how closely Celestia and Luna are tied to their respective heavenly bodies. This point is way subjective. Think about it some, don’t let it bother you that much if you disagree.
Lastly, there seem to be more than a few parallels between your synopsis and S1E1&2, most notably “a scholar from Canterlot and his small group of friends.” Excepting that “his,” of course. At this point, I’m not sure whether you’re doing a switcheroo on the season one opener (Celly gone instead of Lulu, Rule 63 on the mane six) or whether you’re doing something entirely different from the S1 opener that only sounds really close. Giving us clues to which path you’re taking would be much appreciated.
Also, names. I like to see character names in a synopsis, even if they’re OCs.
>> No. 78183
>>77113 boredhooman, "Warpony 4k"

>millennia
millennium
>The Holy
the Holy
>But when it
While not technically wrong, it’s often considered sloppy to start non-dialogue sentences with conjunctions. Probably want to avoid that, especially in the synopsis.
>But when it [...] they discover
You’ve got an agreement issue here in your pronoun choice. “Imperium” is singular, and thus maps easily to “it,” so that on its own is fine. Using a singular noun referring to a group, then switching to a plural pronoun is technically incorrect but no one cares, so whatevs, go ahead, that’s fine. Mixing the singular and plural pronouns, however, is wrong.
>it is discovered that
Passive voice isn’t wrong, but it’s generally frowned upon. Simple fix here is just “they discover that etc.”

This is much more intriguing than your first synopsis. It’s a crossover with both 40K and Mass Effect, if I’m not mistaken; those both have pretty large fanbases, so I’m sure you’ll be able to find an audience.
However.
I’m not really seeing pony in this synopsis. “Equuleus” is a slight nod towards pony, sure, but that’s it. See also:
>Malleus Titus
He’s a pony, right? His name doesn’t sound particularly ponylike. Malleus translates to “hammer,” sure, and has a connection to the good ol’ Malleus Maleficarum, but I don’t think Titus translates to anything in particular. I mean, yes, you could say that in five thousand-odd years equine naming conventions have changed...

...but if you start doing stuff like that, the whole “things have changed over time” answer can quickly become systemic, and then your story stops feeling like ponyfic. I think the biggest problem you’re going to have with this story is with the integration of FiM into Grimdark, far-future Sci-fi in sucha a way that it still feels like a pony story, instead of like a WH40K/ME crossover story with pony thrown in to grab a few extra fans.
>> No. 78185
>>77327 Flashgen, “A Hop, Skip, and a... Slide?”

>nearly a hundred years [...] seventy-five years ago
Unless you’re rounding seventy-five up to a hundred, your timeline is screwy or you’re implying that Equestria had twenty-five years of extensive black-market tech (which would be cool, but shouldn’t be brought in unintentionally). If you are rounding up, don’t; pick one number and stick with it.
>as the bill wears out
So Equestria’s bills require renewal only every seventy-five years? That’s crazy long, even if you apply human lifespans to the ponies. (And bills are sort of a democracy/republic thing, rather than a kingdom thing. Unless Equestria is a constitutional diarchy or something.)
>However,
“However”s should only be used to set up contrasts/contradictions between two sentences, and I’m not seeing any particular contradictions between “Twilight studies something” and “Twilight goes adventuring.” A somewhat unexpected followup, perhaps, but no direct contradictions.
>everything they know about their society may be changed.
More vague sweeping changes to everyone’s lives. Vague ain’t a good thing here.
>Inspired by the sci-fi TV series Sliders, but written for anyone to understand.
Mayhaps you want to include a [Sci-Fi] tag? Even if it’s soft sci-fi, probably for the best. Also, that last half of the sentence—see the discussion in the first few posts about my version of doing that. Semi-consensus reached between MintyRest, Derpy Anon, and me was that it’s probably unnecessary. Maybe. Eh.
>> No. 78186
>>77428 Logician, “The Weight of the Sun”

I think the acid trip bit is too much, yeah. Not sure what you mean by TLUS. Fateful day’s a tad cliché; the sentence’d work fine as just, “That is, until the day he’s etc.” Also, I think “awakes in a dark etc.” might be better/clearer as “awakes in the middle of a dark etc.” but that’s personal taste.

I like this synopsis; it’s a lot punchier than the previous one. I would seek another opinion, though. Like I said before, I think I’m susceptible to palate fatigue when I look at something several times.
>> No. 78195
>>78186

Hehe... I rewrote it again. I won't bother you with it, though. I'm happy with it, and the people I've shown it to think it works, so I'm not going to get repair estimates on something that isn't exactly broken.
>> No. 78217
Title: TLaToCM
Tags: [Grimdark][Sci-fi][Adventure]

Synopsis:
There are no books on Discordian history, because only four ponies have survived from then until now to tell the tale, and two of them are in hiding from the other two... Origins, pre-diarchy. P.S.: Everything you know is a lie.

Add. note: I used to have a "main character is not OC" phrase in there. Then I removed it. The MC is in fact Intelligent!Derpy. Question: should I put the phrase back in?
>> No. 78348
Here’s another synopsis from me. I’ve toyed with this idea in private and done some musing on the IRC; here’s a rough synopsis.

My ideal title image for this would be a dark grey stallion (badass hat optional) with a cutie mark of a cracked magnifying glass, looking as hard-boiled and grim as he possibly can. A colorful background, and Pinkie Pie grinning next to him, combine to make him look misplaced and vaguely ridiculous.

Noir: A Darker Shade of Pink
[Normal] [Light Comedy] [Light Shipping]

Shift, hard-boiled detective extraordinaire, sees darkness behind every one of Equestria’s rainbows. With his friends Serene and Wordsmith, he’s made it his quest to expose the seamy underbelly of this apparently idyllic world. While on the tail of a conspiracy of royal proportions, Shift encounters a suspiciously upbeat pony named Pinkie Pie. Shift is convinced that, behind her delusions, Pinkie is hiding dark secrets, but his efforts to uncover her secrets lead Shift to some uncomfortable revelations about his own beliefs.

Additional tags: Unreliable Narrator up the wazoo.

Plot points: how well does the synopsis communicate the important bits?
Light shipping/friendshipping between Pinkie and an OC, because I have some sort of bizarre compulsion to write weird stuff like that. Perspective Shift, the OC in question, is mostly delusional. He goes to Ponyville after the Discord eps, full of vague suspicions regarding Twilight and her friends. While there, he meets Pinkie and is bewildered by her insistence that Equestria a bright, happy place; the fic is mostly their respective delusions playing off of each other.
>> No. 78494
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78494
Sounds really interesting. I like. ...Except for this line:
>Shift is convinced that, behind her delusions...
I'd cut the comma.

...And this area:
>...this apparently idyllic world. While on the tail of a conspiracy...
This seems to need a smoother transition.

And I'd cut the [Normal] and go straight [Comedy] tag, but that's just me and how I imagine this would play out. Sounds great. I'm interested.

Also, what IRC is this?

Oh wait, there's stuff in spoilers.

>He goes to Ponyville after the Discord eps, full of vague suspicions regarding Twilight and her friends.
This does not come across in the synopsis at all, but if that isn't the focus of your fic, it shouldn't matter. I guess "a conspiracy of royal proportions" could use some detail, though. Not too much.

>Perspective Shift
Might want to introduce his name in full in the synopsis. But that's just what I think.
>> No. 78557
>>78217 Casca, "The Life and Times of Caughlin Mare"

>...
. Avoid ellipses, especially in synopses. They're a smidge melodramatic.
After reviewing a few synopses, I've got a few guidelines I wish I could add to the OP. Most relevantly,
>Use characters' names in your synopsis, irrespective of whether they're canon, background, or original characters.
If your main character is Intelligent!Derpy, why not include her name in the synopsis?

Your synopsis isn't particularly definite, so that's not good, but what makes me really uncomfortable is how it looks to be an origin story. I shy away from those, because I'm reluctant to spend much time on such easily-jossed fanon. And that last line, "P.S.: Everything you know is a lie" makes me especially uncomfortable. Saying that the canon backstory we've seen is incomplete/intentionally misleading could be pulled off well, or it could crash and burn. 

I guess my main point here, in addition to "use names," is this: what does your story offer us besides your fanon backstory? A dark conspiracy, a quest to find the truth, oodles of glistening future-tech and Derpy killing zombies with a crescent wrench? Tell us in the synopsis, because it's the plot that'll draw readers, not the exposition.
>> No. 78568
hope it's not too long
The Cloudy Stars
[humor] [OC] [Friendshipping]
Star Gazer can't get a break. He's always stressed out by his constant studies. He wants to be an ambassador to the Princesses and see the world but he worries he won't pass the tests to become one. But even greater than that fear is his fear of mares: he turns into a quivering mess around them. They all seem nice but he worries that he'll just make a fool of himself or worse upset one of them.

Yet he still spends a large amount of the time in the Ponyville Library studying various books. It just so happens he's there one day when Twilight is testing out a new spell. However, things don't go as planned and now Star has to deal with the consequences: a longer mane and eyelashes are going to be the least of his worries.
>> No. 78624
>>78557
You've given me something to seriously consider. Just to address some points:

>If your main character is Intelligent!Derpy, why not include her name in the synopsis?
Because in this fic, her name's Caughlin Mare. Derpy/Ditzy is just an alias. I did put Intelligent Derpy in the extra tags on EqD though, does that help?

>Saying that the canon backstory we've seen is incomplete/intentionally misleading could be pulled off well, or it could crash and burn.
More precisely, the canon backstory is the result of a global memory hex. Just how well I can pull it off... well, you've have to read through 20+ chapters to find out, but I'm fairly confident. xD

>A dark conspiracy, a quest to find the truth, oodles of glistening future-tech and Derpy killing zombies with a crescent wrench? Tell us in the synopsis, because it's the plot that'll draw readers, not the exposition.
Sure thing. I'll get right on it.

Thanks for the opinions!
>> No. 78646
>>78494
Thanks for your feedback, Derpy Anon!

I'm using [Normal] and [Light Comedy] because my comedic skills tend toward snark and straight lines, rather than full-on wackiness. I think it's also a nice early cue that the grimdarky bits of the synopsis aren't carried through, or at least not sincerely.

The IRC in question was the Training Grounds chatroom at irc://irc.canternet.org/#ttg, though it seems most of the random chat has since migrated to irc://irc.canternet.org/#fic.

The vague suspicions and royal conspiracy thing isn't explored in much depth; Shift himself isn't sure what's going on, just that it's suspicious. It's mostly an in-character reason for him to go to Ponyville.

I'm using only Shift in the synopsis because that's what he goes by most of the time. His first name is a fairly unimportant early reveal.

Thanks again, Derpy.
>> No. 78892
File 132700060231.png - (136.06KB , 900x884 , Sheepie Pie.png )
78892
Okay, was suggested I come here a while ago, and hadn't because I am an idiot.

Rise of the Ultramare
[Adventure]
Following the events The Mysterious Mare Do Well, Rainbow Dash finds herself unable to write her letter to Princess Celestia. After finding out the full ramifications of her actions, she leaves the small town for Canterlot, seeking out the princesses directly for help.

Two weeks later, she returns to find that a new menace has come to plague Ponyville. Armed with the Horned Circlet of Star-Swirl the Bearded, a white-haired pegasus pony calling herself Ultramare has made it her goal to personally see the town in flames.
>> No. 78910
Wow, cool thread. I'll give it a try.

Lines in the Sand
[Adventure] [Sad] [Dark] [Shipping]
As the fresh nation of Equestria begins to grow in size and power, it is met with hostility from its neighboring nations Lasria and Vulpecula. The young royals Celestia and Luna will do anything to protect their homeland and the three ponies who raised them. They will have to tread through a swamp of deception, manipulation, seduction, and bloodshed as they work to stop an Equestrian invasion in its tracks.

Additional Tags: History, War, Sacrifice

Characters: Celestia, Luna, Princess Platinum, Commander Hurricane, Chancellor Puddinghead, OC Ponies
>> No. 79156
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79156
Not without my Gummy
[Romance][Mystery]

Gummy is everypony's favorite alligator. One day, however, it turns out that he's come on a top-secret mission to Ponyville, duping a clueless Pinkie into adopting him as her pet. The mystery quickly unravels, with romantic results.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: This story contains explicit alligator-on-pony, alligator-on-bunny, alligator-on-turtle, alligator-on-Pinkie plus solo alligator scenes. If you are offended by any of that, absolutely do not read, you prude!
>> No. 79167
>>79156
I just produced enough wats to power a galaxy.
>> No. 80356
If any reviewers want to hop in, feel free! I'll try to get a few reviews up, too; these have been sitting for far too long. My apologies to the authors.

Current Queue:
>>78568 FMP, "The Cloudy Stars"
>>78892 Dragomena Diane Pie, "Rise of the Ultramare"
>>78910 Firmly_Grasp_It, "Lines in the Sand"
>>79156 Huzzah, "Not without my Gummy"
>> No. 80591
Sure, I'll jump right in. It's a little weird to not have the text itself to x-ref, but I guess that really forces the synop to stand on its own.

>>78568 The Cloudy Stars

Your very last line makes me all "dohoho; must read. Problem is, it *is* too long. You throw a bunch of conflict threads at me at once and it's overwhelming.

Three points and done:
- study dweeb
- scared of mares -- or Twi specifically
- rule 63

If he's crushing on Twi, mention that in passing. I wouldn't worry too much about scaring away readers -- you're nto fooling anyone who's dead-set against OCnM6 'ship. Be bold; I like that in an author.

I might try something along the lines of
>No matter how much time he spends in the library, it seems Star Gazer will never [...]
to start.

-----
>>78892 Rise of the Ultramare

Ooh, shiny. I feel like going phrase-by-phrase with this one.

>Following the events The Mysterious Mare Do Well,
I like how this puts me right in context. Can be more punchy, though, by simply mentioning her name.

>Rainbow Dash finds herself unable to write her letter to Princess Celestia.
Yes, developing character! I'd want to connect this immediately to one of Dash's core drives. Basically, she's dissatisfied when she knows she can do better, so feeling she hasn't quite learned something important would be very frustrating to her.

I'd pull the third-person-for-first trick; see below.

>After finding out the full ramifications of her actions,
Confusing. I'm sure this is a great story element, but in the limited space of a synop, it just distracts.

>she leaves the small town for Canterlot, seeking out the princesses directly for help.
Now you're putting events in motion. I'd say synops shouldn't, as a rule, have multiple moments in time. Don't show her going, just tell me she returns to save space.

>Two weeks later, she returns to find that a new menace has come to plague Ponyville.
menace? plague? You're overselling it. The whole point of a teaser is to tease. Do put in conflict, but emphasize it by cutting everything else.

>Armed with the Horned Circlet of Star-Swirl the Bearded
I will start caring what this is when I start reading your story.

>a white-haired pegasus pony calling herself Ultramare
physical descriptions are probably bad. The only function I can see this serving is a GIANT HINT that Trixie is Ultramare. Problem is, I don't think dramatic irony belongs in a synop. There's not enough room to plant evidence both for and against a theory like that, and so it come across as heavy-handed.

Then again, mystery writing is not my strength...

> has made it her goal to personally see the town in flames.
I do like this though. The villain has to be extra villainous in a synop.

Here's my take:
Imagine this dialogue
> (Twi) Didn't you learn anything today?
> (RD), somewhat defensive) I learned something important from Mare-Do-Well. I'm just not sure what it is.

Then cast it in third:

> Rainbow Dash learned an important lesson from Mare-Do-Well. She's just not sure what it is. After a trip to Canterlot seeking Celestia's advice, she returns to find a new super-pony in Ponyville. The only problem, this "Ultramare" wants to see the town burn.

-----

>>78910 Lines in the Sand

My gut reaction is "eh, pass." It sounds like you have a Big Picture story when I know I like intimate, character-driven stories. So to hook readers like me, you'd have to tell the big story through your characters' little story(es) and I assume you don't plan to do that.

Yes, that's a snap judgment, but I guess synop writing is all about snap judgments. Putting that aside, here's how I'd try to tighten it up:

> As a growing Equestria faces its first international conflicts, Celestia and Luna will do anything to protect their home and the ponies who raised them.

Everything else is dry.

I'd want to tease the readers more with either character motivation or developing the themes, but I can't guess what they are. Please argue with me.


-----

>>79156 Not without my Gummy (Not a proper review.)

I just have to say that if you're gonna promise "explicit alligator-on-pony" you had better deliver. You might think "oh come on, nopony would seriously expect that to be a clopfic."

You would be wrong. Rule Thirty-Four. At the very least, you must have super-cheeky technically-not-clop humor along the lines of "Airshipping is Magic."
>> No. 80595
>>80591
Ok, thanks and no, there will be no actual shipping in the fic. I've decided on making that a big No in any stories that involve OC's (and probably any stories for the matter, shipping just isn't my style)
>> No. 80670
Across the Bridge
[Sci-Fi][Adventure]
Three ponies, through an accident are cast from Equestria into Iraq during the height of the second insurgency. Can they get home with help of some new friends or will their presence threatens to tip the balance of power and throw our world into chaos.
>> No. 80741
>>78624, oops, I forgot to mention this last time. Putting “Intelligent Derpy” in the additional tags and character list helps, but I’d still feel more comfortable if it came through somehow in the synopsis. Maybe “Caughlin Mare has spent the last exty years in deep cover as ‘Derpy Hooves,’” or something?

>>80591 Hey, thanks for hopping in, Eustatian! I said I’d do some reviews too, so here’s two of mine.
>> No. 80742
>>79156 Huzzah, "Not without my Gummy"

While there are several different rulesets for title caps, I generally go by the Chicago Manual of Style’s, plus capitalization of long prepositions (http://www.writersblock.ca/tips/monthtip/tipmar98.htm for examples). Thus:
>Not Without My Gummy
or “Not without My Gummy” if you want to keep all prepositions lowercase.

Normally I advise against disclaimers, but in this case I think it’s probably for the best. The last sentence is perhaps a tad vehement, but eh, I don’t mind it. However,
>alligator-on-turtle, alligator-on-Pinkie plus solo
needs an “and” somewhere. If you use serial commas, correct it to
>alligator-on-turtle, alligator-on-Pinkie, and solo etc.
or similar. If you don’t use serial commas, you’re a bad person. Take out the comma before “and,” and then feel ashamed because serial commas are awesome.

>One day, however,
Besides the slight cliché, the word “however” should only be used when you’re setting up a direct contrast. There’s no real contrast between “Gummy is popular” and “Gummy is a secret agent.”

>duping Pinkie
Your sentence structure here is ambiguous as to whether Gummy duping Pinkie is the mission entire, or a mere side effect. I assume the second, but you should rephrase for clarity.

One final, mostly-tangential musing: what I really enjoy about Angel (and Gummy, to a lesser extent) is how well the writers establish character nonverbally. Will Angel and Gummy speak in this fic? My recommendation would be to keep them silent, or at least keep their dialogue to a minimum.

I remember an Angel/Gummy buddy cop fic being tossed around in the StoryForge a while back. Did anything come of that?

Yes, anyway! Back on topic. Your synopsis is pretty good, with a few minor fixes suggested, and I am perversely tempted to read this story once it is completed. Hit me up, yo.
>> No. 80743
>>80670 TheWalkingRock, “Across the Bridge”

Oof, real-world politics. That’s risky, but I’m sure you know that already. My suggestion would be to be unclear on which war the ponies end up in—less politically sensitive, same broad themes—unless you’re particularly dedicated to Iraq for some reason. Write for yourself, what you want to write, because you need to write it, but do be aware that you’re opening yourself up to easy criticism. Also, are you a non-native English speaker? I’d very much recommend you get someone to look at this story before you publish it, because your mechanics as shown here are kinda lacking. Mechanical issues:

>ponies, through an accident are etc.
ponies, through an accident, are etc. “Through an accident” is a parenthetical phrase here. It’s grammatically comparable to “ponies (through an accident are etc.” Your parenthetical phrases need closure.

>Can they get [...] chaos.
This starts as a question, but ends with a period. That’s a problem. I’d recommend rephrasing it as not-a-question rather than changing your punctuation; it’s my opinion that rhetorical questions are often bad in stories and almost always bad in synopses.

>will their presence threatens
You’ve conjugated your verb incorrectly. Either “will their presence threaten,” and then make the sentence a question, or “their presence threatens.”


Non-mechanical issues:
>Three ponies
I like names. Give me names.
>some new friends
Ditto.

And all in all, your synopsis is frustratingly indefinite. You’ve got a potentially interesting start (ponies on Earth, in a war zone), but your second sentence gives no new information. Balances tipping, chaos rising, vague predictions of doom and gloom. Give me definite characters with stakes anyday.
>> No. 82279
This thread would be good for, except that I just really don't know about synposes period.

Anyways, my biggest story is: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/7739/Nightmare-Date

I don't really have a synopsis at the moment. I just have a bunch of information thrown up there. What would you guys reccommend?

I also have five other fanfics I need to work on w.r.t this.
>> No. 83395
File 132896920926.gif - (311.97KB , 578x599 , Thank you, thank you!.gif )
83395
>>80591

My apologies for taking so long to get back to you on this. Danke!

I did revise it, keeping a lot of what you said in mind. Didn't take up on the third-to-first thing, and I think I may need to give it a third go-over myself, since most of this advice wasn't fresh in my head when writing the new one.

Cut the description of Ultramare, though I have to say: You're the second person who's told me that they think/though she was going to turn out to be Trixie. I'm... not sure how I feel about that, since Trixie never actually appears in the fic.

Anyhow, this is/was the revised synopsis:

Following the events of The Mysterious Mare Do Well, Rainbow Dash finds her own masked feelings stopping her from writing her letter to Celestia. After losing her position in Ponyville's Weather Patrol, she leaves town in tears.

Not long afterwards, she returns from Canterlot, having sorted out her troubles under the guidance of the city's two rules, Celestia and Luna. She soon finds that a masked supervillain has come to Ponyville. Armed with a powerful magical artifact, a mysterious pegasus calling herself Ultramare has made it her goal to personally see the town in flames.


It'll be undergoing editing regardless of whether or not you want to give it a second look, but still. Thank you again for helping me.
>> No. 83401
Got a story in the works here, thought I'd drop my synopsis by, see how it holds up.

Making Things Write
[Normal]
Behind every great book is a great writer. Almost everypony knows of the intrepid adventures of Daring Do, but few know the truth about her creator.

This is the story of a young mare who attempts to save her literary heroine from a threat far greater than any trap or adversary, with the unexpected help of a certain group of friends.

That's about it. I will say I can't mention my OC's name just yet because that's a pretty important plot point for the first chapter. Thanks in advance.
>> No. 83499
File 132901003095.png - (122.92KB , 900x900 , 130471377716.png )
83499
>>83395
Suggested changes in bold or strikethrough.

>Following the events of The Mysterious Mare Do Well, Rainbow Dash finds her own masked feelings stopping her from writing her letter to Princess Celestia. After losing her position in Ponyville's Weather Patrol, she leaves town in tears.
There isn't much of a connection between these two ideas unless Rainbow Dash is legally obligated to write the letter herself.

>Not long afterwards, she returns from Canterlot, having sorted out her troubles under the guidance of the city's two rulers, Princesses Celestia and Luna.

>Not long afterwards, she returns from Canterlot, having sorted out her troubles under the guidance of the city's two rules, Celestia and Luna. She soon finds that a masked supervillain has come to Ponyville.
All of your sentences except for the fourth are in the form of
>After event happens, Rainbow Dash verbs.
Pretty repetitive. I suggest restructuring.

>Armed with a powerful magical artifact, a mysterious pegasus calling herself Ultramare has made it her goal to personally see the town in flames.


Sorry, but the repetitive structure makes it pretty dull in my opinion.
>> No. 83918
Alright, let's try this...

"Many stories of Equestria focus on the happy aspects of life in the nation. They cover the everyday lives of the ponies under the care of the Royal Sisters, the trials and tribulations ponies occasionally go through, and the happy times that make up much of life. Far fewer focus on the unhappier side of life within Equestria, but these are also commonplace. The rarest of stories are those that cover the darkest areas. Stories of war, and death.

But these are two things that the Royal Guard must face. It is their everyday life to train and ready themselves to combat the threats Equestria faces. For these things do exist, despite the efforts of the Princesses, and sometimes, just sometimes, the Royal Guard must march to war.

So this is their story, for they were soldiers once…

…but heroes now."
>> No. 85771
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85771
Is this thread still going? I made a request over a week ago, still nothing.
>> No. 85872
I am most sorry for my absence, dudebros. Life's been a bit hectic lately, but that's an excuse. I have excuses to give and synopses to review, and I'm all out of—well, actually, I have both. So now you can have both. Whee!


>>82279

The way I read it, you have a synopsis
>Nightmare Moon's new administration isn't going so well. Everypony longs for a return of Celestia to her rightful place. She cycles through a variety of requests from her new subjects. Yet she comes across a very nervous and plain looking young stallion with an odd request: a date. She decides to toy with him... for a little while. She's already having mixed feelings about her eternal night, and these random acts of kindness start to grow something inside of her.
and then a bunch of other stuff piled up after it. The synopsis ain’t bad.

My issues with it:
>She cycles through a variety of requests from her new subjects.
I’m not entirely sure what this means. Like, holding an open court? Petitioners and all that? There’s probably a better way to word this.
>a very nervous and plain looking young stallion
Nameses, my precious.
>him...
Ellipses and em dashes should be used sparingly, especially as short a piece as a synopsis.
>already having mixed feelings
This is probably my biggest problem. Nightmare Moon as shown in canon (however briefly) is unrepentant in her evilness. Starting off with her already conflicted removes a lot of juiciness from that conflict. (Note: you may well show her growing inner conflicts within the story. That’s great! But declaring that they’re already present in your synopsis makes me a tad squirmy.)
>these random acts of kindness start to grow something inside of her.
The phrase bugs me. I’m honestly not sure if there’s a real problem here—my grammardar may be acting up—but this bit makes me weirdly uncomfortable, and I’d like it reworded.

Yes, that’s an odd, extremely vague nitpick. Something about it just weirds me out. Like if you’re a detective, and you’re looking at a crime scene, and you think, Something’s weird here, and most of the time you never figure out what was weird and you realize you just had too much coffee and you get over it later. And other times forensics comes back and tells you that, even though you’ve got a headless corpse and a severed head, they’re not from the same person, and you think, I knew something was off! This phrase is probably a case of the former, but I thought I’d mention it just in case, because you guys care about my weird grammar hunches, don’t you? No, you don’t actually, but whatevs. The internet has plenty of space available for my weird ranty bits when I get weird and ranty.


For all your other stuff piled in there, I’d take out most-if-not-all of it. The song credits should go in their respective chapters. The content warnings can go in their chapters, and probably should. (Although maybe you want them there, so people don’t get scared away by the sex tags? Although if they have View Mature off they won’t see the story anyway. I’d put the warnings in their chapters, you might disagree and that is absolutely totally cool with me, bro.) The shoutouts to inspirations, I’m not sure where you’d put them. They can go in the synopsis, I guess. Eh. The mention of a sequel can probably go at the end of the final chapter, seeing as I’m not likely to read it without first finishing this story.
>> No. 85874
>>83401

Leaving out protagonist names, even if they’re plot points, makes me uncomfortable. Especially if they’re early plot points, since they come up early anyways, and if I'm talking to a friend I'm probably going to call the character by her name anyway, and...

Yeah, anyway. I mean, I definitely understand where you’re coming from, but plenty of books or movies or games go ahead and put spoilers in synopses or trailers or teasers. It’s a choice between two evils, I guess, and it is of course your decision to make either way.

Without the names, though, your synopsis is really vague. Your characters are
>A great writer
>Daring Do
>A young mare
>A certain group of friends
and they’re in danger from
>a threat
Are those friends the Mane Six? You could mention that, that’d help clear up some vagueness. Or detail the threat, or something. I am firmly of the opinion that synopses should establish named characters and concrete stakes for the coming story. Every story runs on conflict, and every conflict requires characters involved and stakes at risk.
>> No. 85876
I'm assuming that's still the title.

>>83918

The “Many stories” bit is totally metafictional. That’s cool if your story is going to be metafictional, ‘cuz I love me some tasty metafiction, but if you’re not going that route then you’ve put in a rather odd red herring. You generally don’t want to remind readers that they’re reading a story; it completely breaks immersion.

We don’t get any named ponies, but we do get a named organization, so that’s something. We get a hint of stakes (war, death, heroism), but again, nothing concrete.

The ellipses rankle. There’s a matched pair of ‘em, and I don’t like it.

Right now, it’s vague—temptingly vague, I’ll admit, but I’d much prefer more concreteness. I’m sounding like a broken record, I know. Mea culpa, brodude.
>> No. 85883
>>85872
Thanks for the review. If it doesn't take too much space, I wanted to discuss things more.

>I’m not entirely sure what this means. Like, holding an open court? Petitioners and all that? There’s probably a better way to word this.

Yep, it's exactly that. I don't know how I should word it though. You have any advice on that?


>Nameses, my precious.

Wait, what?


>Ellipses and em dashes should be used sparingly, especially as short a piece as a synopsis.

I only use it once, though. Isn't that 'sparingly'?


>This is probably my biggest problem. Nightmare Moon as shown in canon (however briefly) is unrepentant in her evilness. Starting off with her already conflicted removes a lot of juiciness from that conflict. (Note: you may well show her growing inner conflicts within the story. That’s great! But declaring that they’re already present in your synopsis makes me a tad squirmy.)

I don't know if I agree with that. I didn't really think of Moon as pure evil in the first place, given how she holds back in combat with the mane six. As well, a big part of this story is that she was already hit with the elements of harmony. I don't want to reveal that in the synopsis, but this fact means that she's already mostly pure/good inside already.

And then, it's true love, pure of heart, that ends up finishing up the last bit of evil. She's met a stallion that loves her unconditionally, forgiving her since he sees the beauty inside the monster. It's sappy, I know, but it's designed as a heartwarming Disney-ish romance (unless the reader chooses the troll ending, grimdark ending, or sex sending).


>The phrase bugs me. I’m honestly not sure if there’s a real problem here—my grammardar may be acting up—but this bit makes me weirdly uncomfortable, and I’d like it reworded.

How should I re-word it?


>For all your other stuff piled in there, I’d take out most-if-not-all of it. The song credits should go in their respective chapters. The content warnings can go in their chapters, and probably should. (Although maybe you want them there, so people don’t get scared away by the sex tags? Although if they have View Mature off they won’t see the story anyway. I’d put the warnings in their chapters, you might disagree and that is absolutely totally cool with me, bro.) The shoutouts to inspirations, I’m not sure where you’d put them. They can go in the synopsis, I guess. Eh. The mention of a sequel can probably go at the end of the final chapter, seeing as I’m not likely to read it without first finishing this story.

I don't know if I agree with any of that. I have the sequel mentioned just in case people are confused about which story is which chronologically. I can't really put the song stuff anywhere else without interrupting the flow of the story.

As for the content thing, it really, really bugs me that whole stories get the scarlet letter rather than just chapters. This is a PG-rated EqD style story-- unless (and only unless) the reader chooses to make it something else. I can't put that anywhere except in the lead... I think.
>> No. 85927
File 132980864965.png - (239.69KB , 621x304 , wonderbolts.png )
85927
Oh, why not. While the story itself grinds its way through the Training Grounds queue, here's a revised version of the synopsis I used there:

Rainbow Dash's Tallest Tales
[Adventure]
Rainbow Dash here. Fastest pony alive, hero of Equestria, most loyal of friends? You've heard of me. Anyway, Cheerilee and Twilight are kinda ticked off at me today, but I talked them into listening to a story that'll make them think twice. It's all about my Best Day Ever. Not the Best Young Fliers competition, after that. This is the story of how me and the Wonderbolts got tangled up with some pirate jerks who were trying to steal Princess Celestia and then how I almost destroyed the Everfree Forest.

No, really. When your life's as awesome as mine is, you don't need to make things up.



Decent picture pending my finding the time to draw one.
>> No. 85987
>>85874

Alright, thanks for your help.

I think I was being overload short-termist and paranoid when I was worried about spoilers. Most of the stuff is going to be established in the first chapter anyway, so it's not going to be that big of a deal.

I'm going to assume the first part was alright, given you didn't say anything (and your ability to find faults scares me a little).

Let's try this again:

Making Things Write
[Normal][Adventure]

Behind every great book is a great writer. Almost everypony knows of the intrepid adventures of Daring Do, but few know the truth about her creator.

This is the story of Opal Parchment, a young mare on a quest to finish the last Daring Do adventure before it's too late. Her mission lands her in Ponyville, where she gets the unexpected help of two of her biggest fans.

---

There we go. I tried to balance being cryptic with explaining stuff a bit better this time.
>> No. 85991
>> 85883
Don't worry, I love feedback. Fire away.

Firstly, a grammar bit I shamefully overlooked last time:
> plain looking
plain-looking

Maybe revise those couple sentences, along the lines of
>[...] so well. Her subjects begs for Celestia’s return, and the royal court’s petitions grow tiresome. Yet she comes [...]
or something. (Although now you’ve got potential confusion from people only familiar with the modern meaning of “petition.” Eh.)

I like to see synopses set up named characters and concrete stakes. Stories require conflict, and conflict requires characters involved and stakes at risk. You’ve got your stakes—Nightmare Moon’s redemption—but your protagonist is left unnamed.

It’s only one ellipsis, yes, but the synopsis is only eighty words long, and an ellipsis every eighty words in a longer piece would almost certainly be considered excessive. Since synopses are generally (and generally should be) quite short, I advise authors to avoid the rarer punctuation marks: ellipses, em dashes, colons, and semicolons. (A note: astute readers may notice that I use all four marks quite liberally in my reviews. My excuse here is that I’m not writing narrative; I’m generally much more judicious with punctuation in my actual stories, although I do perhaps tend towards overuse even then.)

For the "already having mixed feelings" bit, maybe some indication of what happened pre-story? For instance, maybe change that first sentence to something like
> After a pitched battle with the Elements of Harmony, Nightmare Moon has become the new ruler of Equestria. However, her new administration [...]
This hints that maybe the Elements had some sort of delayed or weakened effect, and also helps establish how your AU came about, since as your synopsis stands now it’s unclear whether the EoH were used and didn’t work, were never used, or even if the story takes place a thousand years ago.

>these random acts of kindness start to grow something inside of her.
After staring at this for a while, I *think* my problem with it is the abstract and ambiguous subject and object combined with the metaphorical use of the verb “grow.” It’s structured as [acts grow something], and then the prepositionals and appositives and what-not muddy the issue even more.
I think.
Still not sure.
Maybe reorder the elements to “these random acts of kindness cause something to start growing inside her”? Although I’m not sure why that bugs me less. Or be somewhat more concrete with your subject, object, and verb, e.g. “and his kindness makes her start to question her”... something. Or dismiss this criticism as the effluvia of a diseased brain, that’s always an option. Quite possibly it’s the wisest action at this point.

For the song credits, what I'd do is pick one or more of the following:
> At the end of the relevant chapters, put a short thank you. In brackets or an alternate font if you want, to further separate it from the story proper.
> Put thanks into a comment on the relevant chapter.
> Have an extra "chapter" at the end reserved for full thanks and credits.

I don’t really think mentioning the sequel is necessary here, though it might be a good idea to mention on that story that it is in fact a sequel, and provide a link to this story. Your call. I’m probably being overzealous with the “remove this!” edicts, it’s just that right now your credits, warnings, etc. are 175 words to your synopsis’s 80.

The content warnings... I suppose one thing you could do is create a new story on FiMfic and put the sexual chapters in that story, then have a link at the appropriate break saying, "This alternate ending contains explicit sexual content." (Does FiMfic lets you put links in-line? Not entirely sure. GDocs would handle this type of formatting nicely, but I'm not sure how FiMfiction would react to such a thing. Might be worth a shot, though.)
>> No. 86680
Across the Bridge

[Sci-Fi][Adventure]

Additional Tags: Dark, Humor. Geo-Politics, Tom Clancy

Through a bizarre accident, Trixe, Pinkie Pie and Bon Bon are cast from Equestria, and end up on Earth in Iraq, at the height of the second insurgency. They are now stranded in a world that is radically different than their own. Their presence now threatens to usurp the global balance of power and ignite tensions between the world powers.

Characters: Pinkie Pie, Trixe and Bon Bon (For Now)
>> No. 86691
Name: Success and Envy

[Dark] [Comedy] [Alternate Universe]

When Twilight gets a mysterious letter from another dimension asking for help from the Elements of Harmony, the Mane Six are thrust into a horribly bland, repetitive war between a land of alicorns and a being called "Titan". But there's something wrong with this world, and why are the Mane Six forbidden from meeting the ruler in person?
>> No. 86694
>>85991
I changed it to:

Nightmare Moon's new administration isn't going so well. After narrowly defeating the Elements of Harmony, she rules with a troubled heart, still reeling from the effects of the pitched battle. Her subjects beg for Celestia’s return, and the royal court’s petitions grow tiresome. Yet she comes across a very nervous and plain-looking young stallion with an odd request: a date. She decides to toy with him for a little while. She's already having mixed feelings about her eternal night, and these random acts of kindness cause something to start growing inside her.

Think of this as a tangent from the canon story, although I want to keep it as close in spirit as possible. This is also an attempt at a spiritual sequel to both "Under the Moonlight" by Liquid_Rainbows and "Moon Phased" by SilentAuthor. Please note that the vast majority of the story isn't 'mature', only one of the alternate endings has graphic content. Avoid chapters 12 and 13, and you will see no graphic content. Please note as well that the fourth ending, chapters 16 and 17, has some dark, depressive material. As well, there is a sequel called "A Nightly Romance".


I moved the song credits to the end of the story at the last page. Thanks for your input.
>> No. 86695
Title: The Journals of an Equestrian Nobody

Author: StrongBrush1

Tags: Romance

Summary: The Outside Story: One day, while searching through his attic, a young human author comes across the old journal of a young Equestrian, along with some old photos of said Equestrian. He starts reading the book and, both intrigued and impressed by the social commentary of the young colt, decides to repost the story online.

The Inside Story: After being kicked out of his home in Canterlot, a young guitar-playing colt named StrongBrush leaves for Ponyville to find his way. But after setting eyes upon a local girl named Applejack, he finds more than he asked for.
>> No. 86697
File 133006619266.jpg - (60.98KB , 640x480 , SpringFresh_first_version.jpg )
86697
If you could look at this one, that would be great:

http://www.fimfiction.net/story/7216/Migraines

Title: "Migraines"

An innovative experiment operating on the material in between universes, hyperspace, fails miserably. An explosion levels the research complex and propels a technician into another world. An accompanying explosion in Equestria ends up with the protagonist abandoned in a hospital. Soaked with the caustic substance, he must deal with a brain that has been popped open like Swiss cheese as well as a clunky new pony body with new abilities.

His frequent migraines bring unimaginable pain. They also open up new doorways between universes. Not knowing friend from foe, he must find some way back home soon. Otherwise, he'll continue giving 'birth' to a variety of mysterious creatures-- assuming he can even survive that many of these attacks. Through his journey, he finds himself trailed by a cowpony in black that spins wild tales about an evil Princess Celestia and her six evil assistants. Although he appreciates the help, he doesn't quite agree, since they seem rather... nice.

Although the above sounds grim and dark, I'm intending for this to be a Steven Spielberg / Robert Zemeckis-style adventure story with a positive tone as well as a lot of silly and light moments. This is my first time seriously trying to write something like this as a complete story. I'd love any feedback. I had a devilish time converting my Word docs into a presentable form here-- so the formatting might be screwy at times. I apologize in advance. The story is rated 'Teen' for some salty language and sexual related humor. There's nothing you wouldn't see on, say, a NBC nightly TV-movie. Thanks very much for reading.

->A special thanks to Spring Fresh for drawing the illustration over there.


Yeah, it's a HiE (so sue me :P ). It was my first real fanfic, so I'm still pretty attached to it. I know that the synopsis needs a lot of work. Yet I'm stuck. If you could do everything short of (or maybe including) re-writing it for me, that would be awesome. Or please just point me the way to go.

P.S. This image here is the illustration.
>> No. 86703
File 133006788811.jpg - (107.94KB , 900x720 , the_fluttershy_chapter_by_laaseensld-d4bhyr2.jpg )
86703
Well, I guess I'll give this a shot. Please forgive me if I miss a tag or two.

Warhoof 3,000

[Dark] [Crossover] [Sci-Fi] [Shipping]

In the grim, dark, future of Equestria, there is only war. Beset by internal conflict and pressure from the expanding Empire of the Buffalo, Empresses Celestia and Luna decide to use what little power is left in the
Elements of Harmony to revive the Mane 6. Revived by the Elements of Harmony as genetically-enhanced super-ponies, they lead their armies of Pony Marines to calm the flames of war...
>> No. 86705
>>86703
Tags, any reviewer can forgive. But to forget a link? Impossible!
>> No. 86706
Title: Strongheart, Weak-Hearted
[Comedy]
It's Hearts and Hooves Day out in the west, and Little Strongheart must deal with being the only girl buffalo in her tribe for another year.
>> No. 86707
File 133006823563.jpg - (19.63KB , 474x271 , Facehoof.jpg )
86707
>>86705
Ah! you are right! Alas though. I actually do not have it completely written out. I am still in the writing process. I just wanted to see how the general idea of
it would float with people. All Apologies.
>> No. 86708
>>86705

This is the synopsis review thread, so you aren't even supposed to put links here in the first place.
>> No. 86709
>>86707
Ah, no worries. I just thought you might have been intending to include a link as well.
>> No. 86710
File 133006876647.png - (16.13KB , 150x149 , happy_applejack_by_aeroflyte-d4f74px.png )
86710
>>86709
Phew that's a relief. I had thought I had might of missed something, and totally messed up.
>> No. 86759
>>86705 As >>86708 said, I'm just running off of the synopsis here; even if there is a link, I'm probably not going to read the story.

Currently there are seven synopses queued. I'll try to do a couple today, then finish out the queue this weekend.
>> No. 86825
File 133011903508.png - (59.28KB , 900x563 , Epic Dashy Image.png )
86825
Meh, it would be interesting to see how you guys tear through my synopsis. Throw this one on for the whirl! Throwing the pic I plan to accompany my story on as well (yes, I will be getting the original artist's permission on this, but I'll use this for now).

Tags: [Sci-Fi] [Dark] [Adventure]
Title: Wingless
Synopsis: Rainbow Dash awakens one day to find herself in the ATaMoTS, an infinite testing chamber controlled by a peculiar AI named Adam. When events go awry, Dash is forced into a battle against her own perception of morality and her very sanity. Will the pegasus manage to successfully escape this world, or will she be forced to wander its depths forever?
>> No. 86845
>>86825
It's hypocritical as hell for me to say this, but I think that you should rewrite the last sentence so that it's not a rhetorical question. I can't tell you exactly why it feels wrong, but it does feel wrong.

Maybe I'd write:
''The pegasus fears that she might never escape, forced to wander the depths of her nightmares forever."

Or maybe not (just throwing that out there)...
>> No. 86849
Title: The Conversion Bureau: Reality Break

Tags: [serious] [sad] [alternate universe]

Synopsis: It's not real, it can't be real. Ponies are just cartoons and some fanfics on the internet. The wings, the hooves... I'm just having a bad dream! I wish that was so true. My friends, the end is nigh and we're in for the metaphysical rides of our lives.
>> No. 86850
>>86849
oh and [Adventure]
>> No. 87116
>>85927
I quite like this synopsis, and I’m having trouble finding problems with it. Which is itself a problem; you don’t come to me looking for a pat on the back. Or at least, you shouldn’t. If someone asks me to check a thing for problems, I’m not fully satisfied until I’ve found something wrong with it.

So. Ahem.

You’re nicely in Dash’s voice, you establish characters involved and stakes at risk. There’s a rhetorical question but I think it works here. I suppose one potential problem is the second person—Dash is addressing the reader directly. That’s an unusual decision, and thus one that draws attention. Is this second person carried into the story itself, or is it just here for the synopsis? If it’s carried into the story, then that raises the question of who Dash is actually addressing, when, and why. If it’s not carried into the story, then its use in the synopsis is potentially misleading.

Problem two, almost destroying the Everfree Forest seems an odd thing to boast about.

...That’s it, I think. Go in peace, friend synopsis-writer.
>> No. 87117
>>85987
I like this one better. My main issue here is in the last sentence.
>Her mission lands her in Ponyville, where she gets the unexpected help of two of her biggest fans.
Those pronouns are too ambiguous. I’m not sure which “she” you’re referring to—Opal? Daring? Daring’s creator?—and that’s a problem. Other than that, looks good to me.
>> No. 87118
>>86680
Your first sentence is rather long and unwieldy. I’d shift it around, restructure it, probably break it into at least two smaller sentences.

>Trixe
Trixie
>different than
different from

And your last sentence is... it’s reading as kind of flat to me, right now. “Usurp the global balance of power” and “ignite tensions” doesn’t feel like concrete stakes, it feels like business jargon or somethin’. Usurp whose power, ignite what tensions, resulting in what bad things? Tell me what’s at risk here. Make your conflict be worth something real.
>> No. 87119
>>86691
Oof. You’re doing this, aren’t you. You’re actually doing this.

Welp, here’s my two bits. I don’t like rhetorical questions in synopses. As MintyRest said waaaay back in >>67481, the problem with rhetorical questions is that your readers can answer them, and readers often like their own answers better than they’ll like yours. Avoid questions, make statements. Tell us what your story’s going to be; don’t let us get lost in our own stories.

Also, don’t use the term “Mane Six” unless you’re doing it from an outside perspective. It’s not an in-universe term.
>> No. 87120
>>86694
You still haven’t named your stallion, which is okay, but do be aware that keeping him unnamed has the effect of reducing him to a sort of prop, and placing your emphasis on Nightmare Moon’s inner turmoil. If that’s your intended effect, then all is well and good.

A few minor nitpicks on your attached, non-synopsis info. If you’re going by American standards, then periods and commas always go to the left of the quotation mark. Also,
>'mature',
“mature”; (Even if you’re using American style, semicolons go outside quotes)

Other than that, looks good to me.
>> No. 87121
>>86695, StrongBrush1, “The Journals of an Equestrian Nobody”
>>86697, Swiper, “Migraines”
>>86703, Fishnchipz, “Warhoof 3,000”
>>86706, Anonymous, “Strongheart, Weak-Hearted”
>>86825, Ryonne, “Wingless”
>>86849, FMP, “The Conversion Bureau: Reality Break”
>> No. 87185
File 133028868517.png - (907.90KB , 1024x975 , nightmare_date_by_tlatophat-d4qjsi9.png )
87185
>>87120
The thing about the OC stallion is that he's Twist with a sex change (the illustration here really hints at that already), and I kind of want the fact that he's Twist with a sex change to be something that the audience notices later after a few chapters in-- when he reverts to his lisp under stress and 'starths thalking likes thisfh"'

I really was going for them to have a "Holy Celestia, it really is TWIST!" moment.

You're right, though, in that he's way different than a prop: he's a full half of the story. He takes up much of the action. But I don't really know how to introduce him in within the synopsis.

P.S. I originally meant for it to be Twist herself, but I chickened out and made up a male relative-- I also added Twist herself later in the story as a lampshade (she asks 'where's my cousin' and gets freaked out).
>> No. 87188
>>87185
What a tweest?
>> No. 87201
>>87116
>Which is itself a problem; you don’t come to me looking for a pat on the back. Or at least, you shouldn’t. If someone asks me to check a thing for problems, I’m not fully satisfied until I’ve found something wrong with it.

Well, duly noted. Much like the story itself, I wasn't entirely confident in how it would come across to other people.

>Is this second person carried into the story itself, or is it just here for the synopsis?

It's in the story proper, but the first-person narration is interleaved with third-person segments that establish who the current in-universe audience is (the aforementioned Cheerilee and Twilight, among others).

>Problem two, almost destroying the Everfree Forest seems an odd thing to boast about.

That could probably stand to be reworded to something like "almost singlehoofedly blew up the Everfree Forest," to emphasize the awesome.

>...That’s it, I think. Go in peace, friend synopsis-writer.

Thank you, and carry on the good work.
>> No. 87215
A quick thing I just noticed. There is no shipping in my fic. I have absolutely no idea why I put that there.
>>86703
>> No. 87217
Everypony knows how the Bearers of the Elements of Harmony were able to use their respective elements to defeat Nightmare Moon, but how did Princess Celestia know who they were and ensure that they would meet? This is the story of a small group of astronomers who must reverse-engineer ancient astrology to discover the identities of the Bearers of the Elements of Harmony, before Nightmare Moon returns and plunges Equestria into eternal night.
>> No. 87261
>>86695
Your “The Outside Story/The Inside Story” format isn’t working for me. I’ve seen variations upon that same basic frame story many times, with varying degrees of success, but “I found a pony’s diary” doesn’t sound like a particularly... believable opening.

>guitar-playing
I’m hoping he’s a unicorn, or this raises some difficult questions. Even if he is a unicorn, or he uses some sort mechanical aid to play, be warned that “he’s a musician!” is often a sign of the Mary Sue. Especially if he’s really good at it. Especially if the instrument is a guitar.

>StrongBrush
CamelCase is a bad idea. Either “Strongbrush” or “Strong Brush.”

>But after
While starting sentences with conjunctions is allowable, it’s often seen as sloppy and is thus not recommended, especially in synopses.

You’re shipping your OC, whose name is very similar to your chosen handle (WOOP-WOOP-WOOP go the self-insert alarms), with a main character. That is... I’ll be polite and say “extremely risky.” What are you doing here that’s special, that’s something I wouldn’t find in somebody else’s probably-a-Mary-Sue-self-insert-OC/Main shipping story? In short, why should I read this story? That’s the question a synopsis should answer.

Sorry I didn't get to the others—had a glut of errands today. Will do 'em tomorrow.
>> No. 87313
>>87185
Don't be coy, just give his name. Don't worry that we don't know who he is yet; we didn't know who Harry Potter was, but the book flap still names him. Without names, characters seem mechanical, distant, not-quite-real. Don't leave characters nameless unless you want that effect.
>> No. 87315
>>86697
You haven’t named your main character, and you probably definitely should.

>An innovative experiment operating on the material in between universes, hyperspace, fails miserably.
Okay, this sentence is rather unwieldy. Hyperspace is a material? Even if it is, it reads as technobabbly and weird. Maybe fuse this sentence with the next and simplify, creating something along the lines of
>An innovative experiment on hyperspace fails catastrophically, leveling the research complex and propelling one of the technicians into another world
or something like that.

>Soaked with the caustic substance
I don’t know what this substance is. Is it hyperspace? So hyperspace is some sort of acidic fluid? I’m not entirely sure what’s going on here.

>continue giving ‘birth’
If you’re using American standards, then use double quotes. Also, why “continue”? You haven’t mentioned the creature-birthing thing before. I assume they’re coming from the inter-universal gates, but that isn’t made clear.

>these attacks
The adjective “these” requires that the attacks in question be previously mentioned. They haven’t.

>creatures-- assuming
Be judicious in the use of your ellipses and your em dashes. Also be aware that you’re formatting the em dashes incorrectly. On a Mac, hit Option+Shift+hyphen to insert a dash; on a PC, it’s Alt+0151. Either use one space on each side, or no spaces on either side; don’t do the spacing-one-side-but-not-the-other thing you’ve got here. And all that only applies if you use them anyway; as I said earlier, you do want to be careful with your rarer punctuation marks.

>Although he appreciates the help
What help? If the cowpony’s actually helping, say so; if all it’s doing is spinning rumors, “appreciates the warning” instead.

>Although the above [...] for reading.
If the story’s actually actually got a more positive tone, you can and should communicate this through the synopsis, or at least the tags. And I am emphatically not a fan of “first story,” “sorry for any formatting issues,” etc. You don’t need to apologize, just find ‘em and fix ‘em and we’ll never even know they existed. This chunk can be scrapped.
>> No. 87321
>>86703
>In the grim, dark, future of Equestria, there is only war.
Well.

Okay, the first time someone came up with the tagline, “In the grim darkness of the far future, there is only war,” it was kind of cool and dark and edgy in an overdramatic, slightly-ridiculous way. Now? It’s old. It’s been parodied to hell and back, as well as left, right, up, down, and probably ana and kata as well. Don’t use it unless you intend for it to be humorous.

>Mane 6
Okay, when you’re writing you should spell out numbers, but it doesn’t matter because you shouldn’t be using this term in the first place. It’s a fandom term, not an in-universe one.

>they lead their
These pronouns have no clear antecedents.

>war...
Ellipses should generally not be used in synopses. Especially in this manner, because they come off as hammy. (Or cheesy. Mmm, delicious.) Right now this synopsis would work just as well for a parody, which I don’t think you’re trying to do.
>> No. 87324
>>86706
This synopsis is... serviceable. It does its job, but it’s not particularly involving. I’d put it in the FiMFiction short Archive description, but for the full description I think you’d really be better off with something more detailed.

Sorry I can’t be more helpful, but there’s not much here for me to work with.
>> No. 87327
>>86825
>awakens one day
Not such a fan of this opening. I mean, it can work, but often it reads as more of a copout—you wake up in a room, now let’s get to the real story. Hmm, odd thought: maybe just cut this entirely? “Rainbow Dash is trapped in the ATaMoTS, etc.” Gets attention off a cliché opening and into the actual story. I dunno.

>the ATaMoTS
I’m a little iffy on this. I mean, I’ve got an oddly-capitalized acronym in my own synopsis (“the ANIMa, a bizarre machine that turns relationships into psychic weapons”), so perhaps I’m being a little hypocritical, but my excuses are that I’m writing a crossover, and that “anima” is a word in its own right (Jung’s feminine principle, or just the Latin word for “soul”). Erm. Not entirely sure what I’m saying here. Moving on.

>When events go awry
Uh, bein’ a tad too vague here.

>Will the pegasus manage to successfully escape this world, or will she be forced to wander its depths forever?
Rhetorical question, kill it.
>> No. 87329
>>86849
>I wish that was so true.
I wish that were true.

>My friends / we’re / our
It’s unclear who your narrator’s addressing—his in-story friends, the readers, someone else? Not sure.

Your synopsis is kind of intriguing, but it isn’t actually telling me anything about your story. Crazy narrator, or maybe not crazy. Conversion Bureau, but the narrator didn’t think ponies were real in the first place. MLP:FiM exists in-universe, apparently. All of these combine to give me... I’m not quite sure. I don’t know who your story’s about, or what it’s about, or anything, really.
>> No. 87331
>>87217
Your first sentence isn’t quite a rhetorical question, but I’m sure you could rephrase it as a sentence. Seeing as sentences are generally stronger than questions, especially in synopses, I’d recommend making that change.

One potential risk I’m seeing—not for the synopsis, that’s mostly fine, but for the story itself—is that we already know the outcome. The astronomers succeed, the Elements are reunited, and Nightmare Moon is purified. Knowing the outcome rather minimizes the suspense, so I’d be wary of that.

Other than those two remarks, you’re looking pretty good to me. Cheers.
>> No. 87348
I see that you've opened this again, so I'll give it a try if that's alright with you. Anyway, here we go!

Title: Paranormal Regrets
Tags: Sad

Lyra and Bon Bon have always been close friends, and at times, more than that. When they decide to take the next step, Lyra's worried that it might not work out. When an unfortunate accident threatens to end their relationship, Lyra swears to be there for Bon Bon no matter what, but how far can one unicorn go in the name of love?
>> No. 87377
>>87329
Hmm I'm tempted to give a link but that kinda ruins the point of a synopsis. Well here's a new version.

Synopsis: It's not real, it can't be real. Ponies are just cartoons and some fanfics on the internet. The wings, the hooves... I'm just having a bad dream!
I wish that were true. But pain, friends, and a strange drink are telling me this is all too real. I'm a pony now and I think the world is falling apart.
People, the end is nigh, the world has decided to go out with a bang, and it's taking us along for the ride.
>> No. 87413
>>87321
All righty thank you very much for the feedback.
I will work on retooling the synopsis.
>> No. 87436
>>87324
Dang. I don't know how to make a synopsis for a story that doesn't go over five thousand words without making it sound pretentious.

Thanks for the feedback. It is much appreciated.
>> No. 87489
>>87313
That makes sense. I've changed it to:
Nightmare Moon's new administration isn't going so well. After narrowly defeating the Elements of Harmony, she rules with a troubled heart, still reeling from the effects of the pitched battle. Her subjects beg for Celestia’s return, and the royal court’s petitions grow tiresome. Yet she comes across a very nervous and plain-looking young stallion named Strawberry Dawn with an odd request: a date. She decides to toy with him for a little while. She's already having mixed feelings about her eternal night, and these random acts of kindness cause something to start growing inside her.

>>87315
How about:
An innovative experiment on hyperspace fails catastrophically, leveling the research complex and propelling one of the technicians into another world. The accidental also triggers a horrible explosion in Equestria that ends up with the protagonist abandoned in a hospital. Soaked with the caustic hyperspace, he must deal with a brain that has been popped open like Swiss cheese as well as a clunkynew pony body with new abilities. A weird cowpony dressed all in black frees the technician, names his new pony self 'Raspberry', and then spins a wild tale about an evil Princess Celestia and her six evil assistants.

Raspberry appreciates the help, and he sets out to find a way back home, although he feels wary of the cowpony's warning. Raspberry discovers that his accident causes frequent migraines that bring unimaginable pain. These migraines open up little doorways between universes, causing his body to give birth to a horrifying variety of monsters. Raspberry hunts for pieces of hyperspace within Equestria that could send him back, paralyzed with fear with what the next migraine will unleash.

The story is rated 'Teen' for some salty language and sexual related humor. A special thanks to Spring Fresh for drawing the illustration over there as well.


Do those look good?
>> No. 87490
Here's another one that I'd like you to look at:

Title: Rarity's Vacation From Herself

{ Twilight promises Rarity that a new, experimental spell will make her stronger, smarter, and faster. It works! Yet Rarity wakes up the next morning only to discover a strange side effect. She looks in the mirror and sees a... he. Twilight sheepishly suggests that Rarity enjoy this "vacation from herself" and wait until the spell undoes itself, a full week later.

He calls this new male self "Purity", and he pretends to be Rarity's cousin, helping out after Rarity left for a sudden business trip. Purity tries to keep things quiet, and he goes about life as normally as possible. However, a new body means new... urges. Purity struggles to keep himself off of his old friends. He also must deal with a new customer named Blackberry, just coming in from Hoofington, that falls head-over-hooves in love with him. Blackberry feels rather weirded out, since he's only been into mares before, but Purity seems just so elegant as well as so incredibly beautiful. Purity can't seem to help himself from falling into the same trap.

Can Purity keep his relationship with his friends from turning into something pervy? Can Purity tell Blackberry the truth? What will happen when the seven days run up? }

Thanks!
>> No. 95284
A couple other sleeping review threads have awoken. Now I, too, rise from the depths! Yes. And all it took was a whole month. Well. Remember, if anyone else wants to jump in to review, that’s A-OK with me.

>>87348

I’m uncomfortable with “friends, and at times, more than that.” It’s two clauses connected by a conjunction, so you’d probably use a comma, but the second clause also has an appositive at the beginning, so normally you’d put that in commas as well. But “friends, and, at times, more than that” is way too many commas. It’s not wrong, per se, but it makes me uncomfortable. You don’t have to change this, though. It’s just my grammar sense acting up.

Otherwise, standard criticisms here: more detail in “an unfortunate accident” would be nice, and you end with a question. Right now, I’m thinking that Lyra ends up killed by a falling object, and her ghost lingers on out of love for Bon Bon. (I’d read that.) In general, avoid questions in synopses, because they allow readers to spin off into their own fantasies rather than fall into yours.

[Partial exception: asking a question and immediately answering it, usually sarcastically. The classic example is “Can these unlikely heroes overcome their differences and save the world? No. No, they cannot.”]

I’d rephrase that last sentence as declarative rather than interrogative, and maybe split it up into a couple sentences. Something like, “Before Lyra can move in, though, a tragic accident at the noodle factory ends her life. Now her ghost lingers on, determined to show Bon Bon the depths of her love.” Or, you know, whatever’s actually going to happen.
>> No. 95287
>>87377
This is more definite, which is nice. “A strange drink” might need some more clarification? But you’ve moved into specifics. You’re a pony, the world is about to end, let’s step back and watch the chaos unfold.

I am a little confused by the synopsis combined with [serious] and [sad] tags, though. Perhaps a little more solemnity and consequences in the synopsis? Right now I’d expect black comedy. Your use of casual speech (contractions, “cartoons and some fanfics,” “a strange drink,” “out with a bang,” and “taking us along for the ride”) don’t make it sound like a serious, sad story. Dark, yes, but your narrator doesn’t seem to be particularly serious or sad right here. Something to think about, at least.
>> No. 95290
>>87490

You already know I’m going to tell you to quit it with the questions in that last paragraph. “Now Purity must keep his relationships with his friends chaste.” “He has to decide whether to tell Blackberry the truth.” “The seven-day time limit is quickly approaching.” Somethin’ like that.

Also: Twilight’s spell makes Rarity stronger, faster, smarter, and male. Might want to rephrase that, to avoid the potential unfortunate implications.
>> No. 95293
The 6th Age
[Dark][Adventure][Sci-fi]
Ivory spires that put to shame the mountain they're grafted to. Thousands of lives perched on a slab of iron bolted to the side of a big rock. An artificial sun doin' its best to warm the deep shadows underneath a city on a plate, and way down where your hooves can touch the pavement, you're denied even that. This, all of this, is New Canterlot. This place is everythin' you ever dreamed of, and everythin' you ever feared. For what it's worth, good luck out there, chummer. I think you're gonna need it.

I've worked hard on this. I still don't like it. I might scrap it and start all over. Hrmmmmm.
>> No. 95429
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95429
Shacked Stallions in the Solar Seraglio
[Shipping][Comedy]

Old synopsis:
Big Macintosh is invited by Princess Celestia to Canterlot to discuss agricultural problems. And animal husbandry.

New synopsis:
He was a humble apple farmer with a simple wooden collar, while she was an luminescent ruler clad in gold. When Big Macintosh is invited to Canterlot to discuss agricultural problems, he finds a life he never imagined, and a lover he never dared dream about.


Yes, crappyunicorn gave permission for the use of her Canterlot picture there in the background.
>> No. 95452
>>95429
luminous, not luminescent
unless I'm saying she glows without heat, which could be true but makes me think of a firefly instead of a solar princess.
>> No. 95534
File 133373992951.jpg - (127.35KB , 1280x1024 , Lyra132640934273.jpg )
95534
No, you're a unicorn. Now act like one!
[Shipping][Human-in-Equestria]

Lyra is a normal human girl with no direction in her life. But when she gets transported to Equestria, she's turned into a unicorn and has an... interesting meeting with Bon Bon.
>> No. 95640
Apparently there's about 5 errors in this and
I'm having difficulty identifying the errors.
Please help.

A young Colt named Valiant who goes through
PonyVille Primary and into college confronts so many problems
in life that he eventually faces depression.
Ever since he first had depression he has remained
silent at school and the outside world.
Everyday, he gradually builds a wall around himself
from reality and blocks himself into his world of
depression and silence.

He doesn't have decent friends.
He gets bullied almost constantly.
He faces family problems.
He confronts plans to suicide.

Will he manage to break through his wall of depression?
>> No. 95672
I've changed my synopsis quite a few times since I started my story. The basic premise of my story is that Dash has a crush on Twilight, and their relationship gets off to a rocky start, and then falls off a rocky cliff.

How much detail should one put in a synopses? In my latest iteration I go with a bit of tantalizing vagueness as follows:
Sometimes, you can't help who you fall for. With the best young flier competition not too far away, Dash begins getting distracted with frequent visits to the Ponyville Library.

I guess it depends on the premise, an obvious mane 6 shipping premise can get away with being vague because people always like to read about those, but a less attractive general premise such as "the elements of harmony are passed down to 6 new ponies" would require a bit more detail in its synopses because otherwise people will gloss over it.

Anyway, I would just like some opinions on when to be vague or when not to be vague in your premise.
>> No. 95679
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95679
Ferrarity
[Normal]
The newest craze in locomotion is sweeping Equestria. 'Auto-carriages' are fast, efficient and ugly. So, so ugly. One unicorn will not stand for this crime against fabulosity!
>> No. 96057
>>95293
Spell out numbers, whether cardinal or ordinal: “The Sixth Age.”
That first dropped g (“doin’”) is a tad surprising: it’s generally associated with lower class and lower education, but “Ivory spires,” “grafted,” and suchlike would seem to indicate otherwise. Maybe introduce that dropped g before the elevated vocab, or at least in the same sentence.

Your synopsis doesn’t tell me much about the story. While you’re very flavorful with your choice of vocab and accent, your current synopsis focuses on setting rather than plot. I’d guess it’s something post-apocalyptic? But I’m not sure, see; I know neither the plot nor the characters involved, and that's a problem. Your setting’s nice, but you’re not writing a travel guide. I assume.
>> No. 96058
>>95429

I don’t think I’ve seen this pairing before. (Not counting generalized Molestia, that is. Haven’t seen this pairing spotlighted.) Interesting idea you’ve got here.

The old synopsis works if you’re limited in length, though note I’d change it to active voice instead of passive (“Princess Celestia invites Big Macintosh etc.”). Same note on the new synopsis. You don’t really need the comma between “imagined” and “and.” Otherwise you’re looking clean. I am intrigued by this synopsis.
>> No. 96059
>>95534
I assume you're doing nonstandard title caps on purpose, so that's fine.

Starting sentences with conjunctions like “but” is, while not wrong, often considered sloppy. I’d recommend changing it. “Interesting meeting” could do with clarification as to the type of interesting you mean. [Shipping] tag narrows it down somewhat, but “interesting meeting” could be initial terror/seeking understanding/love at first sight/insta-orgy, and narrowing that down’d be nice.
>> No. 96060
>>95640
Hmm. I assume you submitted to EqD and got auto-rejected?

Here are some tips from me. Read the OP of any thread you submit to. For instance, I’ve here asked for title and tags, which you’ve missed. From looking at this small bit, I rather suspect you’re going to need a run through one of the review threads or the Training Grounds before you’ve got any chance of being accepted to EqD.

Formatting: you’ve added a whole bunch of unnecessary paragraph breaks. Makes it look like you’re trying to write poetry. Don’t do that.

You’ve screwed up a few of your caps—“Colt” and “PonyVille.” Fix those.

“Everyday” should be “Every day.” They’re not the same thing.

The phrase “confronts plans to suicide” doesn’t quite make sense. Are you a non-native speaker? I think you mean, “He’s made plans to commit suicide,” but I’m not sure.

Likewise, “builds a wall around himself from reality” is wrong. I assume you mean “builds a wall separating himself from reality.”

You end with a rhetorical question. I advise against using rhetorical questions in synopses.

You use the word “depression” three times. That’s too many for such a short bit.

“Ever since he first had depression” is the wrong verb. “Developed” instead of “had” would be more correct.

Even ignoring the errors, though, I’m not particularly interested in reading this story. It’s about someone overcoming his depression, and yes, that’s a very noble thing. But your story doesn’t sound, well, interesting. It’s all focused on him, and your synopsis doesn’t make him seem like anything more than a sad sack. Either make him more dynamic, or introduce other named characters for him to interact with.
>> No. 96061
>>95672
I’m all for specificity in synopses. Your current synopsis gets your point across, sure, but you could write “TwiDash Shipfic #176” instead and few would notice the difference. This synopsis doesn’t tell me why your TwiDash shipfic is better than someone else’s. What makes you special? Right now, you’ll get readers, but they won’t be coming for your story—they’ll be coming because they’ve already read TwiDash Shipfics #1-175. Which, let me hasten to add, is a perfectly acceptable way to get readers, and if you write well then you’ll eventually have people saying, “Hey, TwiDash Shipfic #176 was really good! You should read it!” and you’ll get readers that way, too. That’s absolutely fine, that’s a thing you can do and that’s fine, but it’s something you should think about anyway.

Also, “Best Young Flyer competition.” Caps and spelling.
>> No. 96062
>>95679
Hmm. You set up a clever premise. While you don’t name your character, you make it obvious enough who it is (and her name’s in the title anyway). You establish concrete stakes—the carriages are ugly, and Rarity cannot let that stand. And you do all of this in the space of four sentences of reasonable length. Grammar-wise, I like my double quotes and my serial commas, but that’s personal preference. I can’t find anything real in here to criticize. Nice job.
>> No. 96066
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96066
Hi there! I've got two short synopses for my fics- they're not quite standard "summaries/descriptions", but I'm hoping they get the idea going well enough.

1.) Another Day For the Whooves
[Comedy/Slice of Life about the daily shenanigans of the Whooves family]
Synopsis:

Wake up, clean the TARDIS, have some tea, get chased by Daleks, have more tea, lose the Vortex, make muffins, find the Vortex, eat muffins and tea, blow up the planet. Just another day for the Whooves family.

...Oh, and Carrot Top has NO idea what's going on. Just saying.

2.) Equestria: The Time Loop Files
[Comedy/Random about the insanities of Twilight and the Mane 6 as they loop endlessly through time. Mainly crack]

Synopsis:

Traveling back in time once is more than enough. But more than once, and involuntarily? Sheesh. Twilight and the rest of the Mane Six are about to find out just how "crazy" (or bored) ponies can become when exposed to decades of time looping shenanigans.

Reader come in, there's pony within. Prepare yourself for the horror, the wonder, and the insanity of the Equestrian Time Loop Files, preserved here for transdimensional hilarity. And please remember not to feed the Temporasprites.

Thank you!
>> No. 96069
File 133394535337.png - (189.35KB , 726x601 , Bon Bon131859514608.png )
96069
>>96059
Lyra appears in Bon Bon's bathtub (while Bon Bon's taking a bath.) How can I change it so it's clearer, but doesn't sound dirty.
>> No. 97675
File 133472711390.jpg - (28.34KB , 500x502 , rainbow dash thinking.jpg )
97675
As Ion-Sturm has pointed out, the current synopsis for my EqD fic is kind of lame, and I want a better one. How's this?

Spirits of Harmony
[Adventure]
The Elements of Harmony have forged more legends throughout history than any pony remembers. The Elements remember, though, and sometimes, the Elements will tell their stories.
>> No. 97676
>>96058

Thanks for the review and suggestion.
>> No. 97677
>>96058

Thanks for the review.
>> No. 97679
[Shipping][Human-in-Equestria]
Bored with high school, Lyra's life changes when she's brought to Equestria and turned into a mint-green pony with a magical horn bulging out of her head. After an... interesting meeting, Bon Bon decides to help Lyra adjust to life in Ponyville.

Is this any better?
>> No. 98954
A Grating Tale
[Dark]
Itchweed Nathaniel Grate (or Grate, as he would be called if he had any friends) tends to spend his time with nature, either outdoors in the untamed areas of Equestria, or in his florist shop, surrounded by his beloved flowers. But Grate has begun to see dark patterns surrounding Ponyville, from sinister thoughts within his own mind... to the very landscape itself.
>> No. 99013
I've been terrorizing #fic on IRC with this synopsis for days now. I guess it's time for it to see the light of day:

The Equestrian Spring
[Dark]
Nine months was all it took for one earth pony to put Princess Celestia on the defensive. A fledgling protest movement and its wily leader have risen to challenge both her and her sister’s age-old rule. And though Celestia harbors many doubts about her adversary's true motivations, she can’t help but wonder if her own strategy for restoring order isn't proving the protesters' point. As she, Luna, and a devoted Royal Guardspony race to tamp down the flames from Just Cause's torch, the princess will discover first-hoof what happens when emotions are repressed, when loyalties are abused, and when difficult questions are ignored for too long.
>> No. 99029
File 133536963969.jpg - (6.16KB , 251x142 , 1334998801950s.jpg )
99029
Not Echoes, but giving it a shot anyway.

>>97679
>Bored with high school, Lyra's life changes when she's brought to Equestria and turned into a mint-green pony with a magical horn bulging out of her head. After an... interesting meeting, Bon Bon decides to help Lyra adjust to life in Ponyville.
The use of ellipses implies ambiguity. Quoting Echoes: "I’m all for specificity in synopses" - don't be vague on your first impression, be upfront! "Interesting meeting" could do with a bit of expansion, I suppose - "a chance encounter", "an embarrassing incident", "a series of ..." - would give you more of a hook earlier on, grabbing that vital first interest.

>>98943
>Ever wondered how Derpy got her cutie mark? or why she loves muffins so much? That grey mailmare has a more complicated past than you think. this is the story of how she became the googly-eyed mother of young Dinky.
Capitalize "or" and "this". Also, replace the rhetoric questions with statements: it's better, imho, for the readers to be the first ones to ask questions rather than your fic. Also because Echoes says so and he's a lot better at this. I feel that it needs more info, too. "How Derpy became a mother" doesn't scratch the surface enough. It's not that it's not engaging, it's that there isn't anything to engage us with.

>>98954
>Itchweed Nathaniel Grate (or Grate, as he would be called if he had any friends) tends to spend his time with nature, either outdoors in the untamed areas of Equestria, or in his florist shop, surrounded by his beloved flowers. But Grate has begun to see dark patterns surrounding Ponyville, from sinister thoughts within his own mind... to the very landscape itself.
Ah, "Nathaniel". Almost-name of a good friend of mine, the anti-hero in the excellent Bartimaeus Chronicles, and possibly second most-frequent name of self-inserts in bad brony-in-Equestria fics. Nathaniel is not a pony name. I would suggest you remove that part. Remove the parentheses (brackets) and just use commas instead. "tends to spend" - it's implied that he spends most if not all of his time with nature. Why not just state this outright?

>....spends most, if not all of his time with nature, either outdoors...

Starting sentences with "And" and "But" are deemed sloppy.

Remove the ellipse after "mind" for reasons stated above.

What does "from thoughts to the landscape itself" mean? I see it as: he sees patterns within his thoughts, as well as in/on the landscape, and these surround Ponyville. Which does not make much sense, as "thoughts" and "landscape" don't quite match "borders (that surround) Ponyville". Perhaps replace the "sinister thoughts" bit with something more concrete, present in the physical world that can be measured on the same level of "landscape".
>> No. 99048
Been feeling like this synopsis is a bit off. Thought I might give this a go.

Caveat Emptor: Let The Buyer Beware
[Dark][Adventure][Sad]

Things are awry in Ponyville. Last Twilight Sparkle checked, the only voice in a pony's head should be her own. Curiosity piqued, Twilight and her friends do some investigating, and uncover a horrifying secret. As loyalties are tested, the six friends find themselves questioning the very world around them. But through it all, one stark, terrifying truth remains clear:

Everything comes at a price.
And It has come to collect.
>> No. 99059
>>99029
okay thanks. it's diffucult because i don't want to give away too much detail, but here goes take two:
A Special Mare
She may look silly and act funny, but that grey mailmare has a more complicated past than you think. Delve into her painful past and discover what makes that googly eyed pegasus so special.

how's that?
>> No. 99066
>>99029

Thanks for the advice. While the name is kinda a non-issue, as I never use anything other than Grate after the introduction, I'll definitely get to fixing the rest of the summary.

It will probably help significantly when I have slightly more of the story written, so I can be more specific, at least.

As for "the landscape itself" bit... I will freely admit that was BS on my part, resulting from ending up with half a sentence and nothing more to add. It will probably change anyways when I figure out exactly what will be happening in this story. Beyond the general concept, I mean.

But thanks, I may submit an updated version when I've improved it a bit to see how that goes over.
>> No. 99093
>>99029
thanks
>> No. 99211
>>99059
>She may look silly and act funny, but that grey mailmare has a more complicated past than you think. Delve into her painful past and discover what makes that googly eyed pegasus so special.
I'd say replace "She" with Derpy Hooves, or Derpy. Being frank with your main character is the best way to go.

I think there's a hyphen - "googly-eyed".

But otherwise, I think it's better. It gives me the suggestion of warm-hearted D'aww. Again, what I perceive may be different from what the majority sees, but this is what I have to offer.

>>99066
Sure thing. You don't need to come up with a synopsis until you publish it for general viewing; when you do that, by then you should probably have already a clear idea of where you're going with it, which in turn is all the info you need to write a summary.
>> No. 99713
[Tags] Dark, Adventure, Alternate Timeline
Here's the synop for my new fic:

Welcome to the world of Redemption: a world where Pegasi rule, Unicorns have disappeared, and Earth ponies are either slaves or banished to the wastes. After the alicorn queen Ao leaves the Three Cities for 1000 years, political turmoil and unrest have left the world in its current state. Kicked out of her home for discovering the dark secret hidden underneath the City of Haven, a pegasus author goes on a quest through the wastes to find those forlorn and unwanted that will stand with her to stop the corruption and deception that has taken hold of the once peaceful land.
>> No. 99730
Greetings.

I am TheGreekDollmaker and I would like to present to you my story synopses.

You see, I am planning on a revision on one of my stories, "Beneath the Fields of Heaven" a deconstruction of traditional HiE stories. I have two openings that I would like to show you, one old, one new. I should also point out that I am not a native english speaker and this was one of the first stories I actually wrote.

---
OLD SYNOPSES
Sypnosis: As the leaves blow around Equestria, as the snow falls within the snowy Dragon Mountains, a human enters this world.
Directionless he will be stripped of whatever illusions of happiness he ever knew, he will expiriance what it means to be alone, injured and not ready to die yet. In this new world he will learn what it means to be robbed of his memories, left with no objective.

He will have to find his purpose, the purpose of his existance in this land, the purpose of why he needs to go on, the purpose he is unaware about.

NEW SYNOPSES:There once was a clever animal.

One which, between the uncountable star systems and light years separating them, found himself in Equestria. The trees grew old as spring came and their leaves continued to fall around Equestria, the hummings of joy and festivities echoed between unconquerable mountains coming from the Gryphonian capital, while the grave silence of at the lands of the dragons continued on like madness. Nothing changed, and nobody was there to greet the wandering beast.

The clever animal found himself directionless, stripped of his experiences, left with only shells and fragments of agonies to torment himself and others.

That clever animal was man.

---

The Story in Question Chapters 1-3 (Links to later chapter in the doc): https://docs.google.com/document/d/1HnjLC3R6tYWMBaoxMtMAlUXFX10FfGT5aNasnmW68Kg/edit

With Regards
TheGreekDollmaker
>> No. 99741
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99741
This thread is great; I think I'll help out in a bit. Meanwhile, please tell me whether or not this grabs the eye:

"The Savage Way"
[Sci-Fi][Dark][Human]
After a disaster at sea, Caramel finds himself stranded on an island with the only other survivor: a human immigrant. They agree to work together and escape. But soon Caramel begins to wonder if his new friend is not as benevolent as he seems.

Thanks in advance!
>> No. 99856
>>99730

The most important job for a synopsis is to grab the readers' attention. It can do this by being brief, by raising questions, and by being vaguely omenous while still giving an idea of the contents. The first step to telling which of these does this most effectively, is to listen to what your gut tells you. The best synopsis grabs the reader on an emotional level as well as a conscious one.

Of these two, the second grabs me more effectively. The first is too vague, and feels like an attempt to summarize without spoiling the story.

The second is poetic without being too overwritten (in my opinion), the language is specific enough, and the mention of the hero's own psychological problems tells us a bit about the sort of conflict to expect.

Now for the small stuff.

The second sentence's structure rings false, because the phrase "one which" should not come at the beginning of a sentence (though you've probably seen people do it erroniously). I suggest something like, "Between the uncountable star systems and light years separating them, he found himself in Equestria."

The third sentence has some comma splices—that is, independent clauses separated by commas. It needs to be re-phrased. You could break it into smaller sentences. You could add conjunctions, such as "...fall around Equestria, and the hummings of joy..."

The "at" after "grave silence of" seems to be a simple error. If not, be advised: there is no instance in English where the phrase "of at" is correct.

Use of the word "grave" seems strange here. I would only say "grave silence" if I was talking about a person's manner, or if I wanted to hint at something deathly being involved.

The phrase "like madness" is confusing in this context, at least in English. I say cut it.

I suggest merging the second and third paragraphs.

The rest is good. Keep writing; you've piqued my curiosity.
>> No. 99861
File 133573472740.png - (236.72KB , 900x900 , Cheerilee Flowers.png )
99861
Howdy! I could use some help.

I'm currently putting the finishing edits on the first chapter of my first fanfic, Smiling Flowers. However, before I post it, I need a Synopsis. Here's the one I have:

Title: Smiling Flowers
Tags: [Slice-Of-Life] [Semi-Sad]
Synopsis: For most ponies, their Cutie Mark represents the confirmation of their destiny and their special talent coming into light. But for Cheerilee, it represents something else...frustration, anxiety, insecurity....and a secret she's found harder and harder to keep to herself. A story of discovering yourself and following your heart.

I don't know...I'm really not happy with how it sounds. The idea of the story is that Cheerilee has been lying about her cutie mark...she got it when she was gardening as a filly. But she wanted to be a teacher so bad that she lied about it and still pursued teaching. The story will be about her overcoming insecurities based on lying about her mark (through conversations with several characters), and learning that what your Cutie Mark is isn't as important as what your passion is...that just because her "special talent" is gardening doesn't make her any less of a teacher.

I want the synopsis to hook someone into the story based on wanting to find out what Cheerilee's secret is, and wanting her to overcome the issues she has with it. My current Synopsis just feels very...flat.

If you want to read more of the story, the current Rough Draft is located here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1VjNVp9mkC2i0ZIuW3WrnmO0Gb0W55ASAgAN6DiYHRQY/edit

WARNING: ROUGH DRAFT. Lots of edits have been made in my on-computer text file that haven't changed in the google docs file yet. The edits, though, are not story related...they have to do with grammar usage, Showing instead of Telling, and other things like that.

Any advice/rewrites that you could give me on the Synopsis would be hugely appreciated. Thanks!
>> No. 99925
Title: Watching Paint Dry
FiMFiction tags: [Slice of Life]
EqD tags: [Tranche de Vie (Normal)] life, love, and, fancy, mathematics

Short Synopsis: After the Crusaders paint their club-house, Sweetie watches it dry.
Long Synopsis: Apple Bloom and her friends give their clubhouse a fresh coat of paint, and on a whim Sweetie Belle decides to watch it dry. Scootaloo doesn't quite see the point, but some things, such as summer afternoons, are beyond explanation.

Spoiler: Apple Bloom and her friends finish painting their club-house. Scootaloo has made a mess of herself, so she and Apple Bloom go to wash the paint out of her wings. Sweetie stays behind, after deciding to take a play-argument seriously: she will prove that watched paint does dry. AB and Scoots play in the water until AJ tells them to knock it off. Sweetie listens to cicadas and the paint is wet; AB talks about AJ's vendetta against woodpeckers. Sweetie admires the treehouse's foundations and muses over the brain-work that went into building it (very soft fancy-mathematics joke here); AB and Scoots jump in a pond, and Scoots expresses concern for Sweetie's feelings. The paint still isn't dry, and Sweetie acquires a beanbag for herself and philosophizes with Rainbow Dash (with stealth AppleDash shipping). Finally, Apple Bloom decides to check on the paint, and she and Scootaloo discover that Sweetie has fallen asleep. The paint's dry, but ultimately unwatched. There's a throwaway joke about Apple Bloom and power tools, and everypony starts thinking about their evening together: the Apples, Rainbow, and the Crusaders.

This is not a plot-driven story.

The main theme is that the things most worth having, whether they're relationships or physical capital (like the treehouse), require attention and work and sometimes just time. A secondary theme is a dialectic between stillness, solitude, and appreciation on one side; and action, companionship, and creativity on the other.

This is a sacred-gerbil story. And compacting it down to fit in a synopsis has not been easy. Thoughts?
>> No. 99926
Title: Out of Context
Tags: Adventure, Sci-Fi, Not Crappy HiE

The laws of reality are flexible. If someone has a strong enough will she can alter reality to an extent. Life in the galaxy is dependent on this flexibility, except for life on Earth. For some reason reality around humanity is rigid. This effect increases exponentially with the human population. Humanity has been expanding in the galaxy for the last couple of centuries. In this time, they have discovered the remnants of other species, but all the worlds they found have been barren. That is until, at the very edge of explored space, a single strange world is found with equally strange inhabitants. Luna receives a dire warning from a spacefaring parasite, whom she has battled with in the past. It warns of a spreading plague of unknown nature that chokes out all life. A great swath of space is uninhabitable and untraversable; and it is growing in the direction of her world. Unbeknownst to her, a human expedition is already in orbit.
>> No. 99928
She may look silly and act funny, but that grey mailmare has a more complicated past than you think. Delve into her painful past and discover what makes that googly eyed pegasus so special.

Mmm. This says "generic Derpy sadfic" to me. I disagree about needing to use her name, but it's not a terrible idea.

Her googly eyes and playful demeanor hide a painful past.

Really, do you say more than that?

--

"The Savage Way"
[Sci-Fi][Dark][Human]
After a disaster at sea, Caramel finds himself stranded on an island with the only other survivor: a human immigrant. They agree to work together and escape. But soon Caramel begins to wonder if his new friend is not as benevolent as he seems.

You have my attention, and I don't even like hyoo-menz.

First sentence is very indirect. Action verb.
A disaster at sea strands Caramel with a strange creature: a human.

"work together" and "escape" are so wishy-washy. And who cares about beginning to wonder?
Caramel can't survive on his own, but his only friend might not be as benevolent as he seems.

--

Welcome to the world of Redemption: a world where Pegasi rule, Unicorns have disappeared, and Earth ponies are either slaves or banished to the wastes. After the alicorn queen Ao leaves the Three Cities for 1000 years, political turmoil and unrest have left the world in its current state. Kicked out of her home for discovering the dark secret hidden underneath the City of Haven, a pegasus author goes on a quest through the wastes to find those forlorn and unwanted that will stand with her to stop the corruption and deception that has taken hold of the once peaceful land.

Great wall of text, Batman!

I'll find out what the place is called soon enough. As a general rule, names for OCs or other original things are meaningless to someone who hasn't read the fic yet. Exception for Ao because she's not the alicorn we're expecting.

The throne of the alicorn Ao sits a thousand years empty, unicorns have disappeared, and pegasi enslave the remaining earth ponies. An author strikes too close to the dark secret of her home city. Banished, she seeks those who will stand with her against the corruption that stole the land.

--

Greek, what makes your story different? I only hear typical HiE stuff in your synopsis.

--

For most ponies, their Cutie Mark represents the confirmation of their destiny and their special talent coming into light. But for Cheerilee, it represents something else...frustration, anxiety, insecurity....and a secret she's found harder and harder to keep to herself. A story of discovering yourself and following your heart.

Synopsis with fluff deleted

... Cutie Mark represents... special talent... But for Cheerilee, it represents ... insecurity....and a secret ...

Canon has this, which would be nice to reference.
Cheerilee: Yes I know, but honestly, that's how everypony was wearing their mane back then. I had decided to become a teacher, and the flowers symbolized my hope that I could help my future students bloom if I nurture them with knowledge. The smiles represented the cheer I hope to bring to my little ponies while they were learning. Now, can anyone tell me when a pony gets his or her cutie mark?
Twist: Oh! Oh! Oh! When she discovers that certain something that makes her special!
Cheerilee: That's right, Twist. A cutie mark appears on a pony's flank when he or she finds that certain something that makes them different from every other pony. Discovering what makes you unique isn't something [Diamond Tiara: pssst!] that happens overnight, and no amount of hoping, wishing, [Tiara: pssst!] or begging, would make a cutie mark appear before its time.


*snip*
the flowers symbolized my hope that I could help my future students bloom if I nurture them with knowledge. The smiles represented the cheer I hope to bring to my little ponies while they were learning.

*switch to 3rd person and snip again*
Cheerilee's flowers symbolize her students blooming, and the smiles are the cheer she brings.

*and contradict*
Cheerilee's flowers symbolize her students blooming, and the smiles are the cheer she brings. At least, that's what she tells everypony who asks.


Done.

--
Flying High, Falling Hard

Well, Dash ends up muzzle-to-muzzle with Spitfire, and she sleeping with Twi in a mostly-but-not-really-platonic way by the second chapter, and the coming-out disaster... why should you settle for a generic synopsis?
>> No. 99935
>>99928

Alrighty, I see where you're going with this. I still want to get in the fact that the story is about Cheerilee learning something...I really don't want people to read the synopsis and go "Oh look, another sad story with no happy ending. Yawn snore."

Basically, I want a second half of the synopsis that reads like this:

"But after a horrible day, when she simply can't hold the truth in anymore, she learns that sometimes, following your heart is more important than following your "predetermined destiny" "

But that sounds awkward and I feel it gives away a bit too much...any suggestions?
>> No. 99963
>>99928

Thanks. I'll work on tightening the language.
>> No. 100018
>>99856

Greetings.

Thank you for the critique. Here is the fixed version, the one which will be used in the fan fiction.

---
There once was a clever animal.

Between the uncountable star systems and light years separating them, it found itself in Equestria. The trees grew old as spring came, their leaves continued to fall around Equestria, the hummings of joy and festivities echoed between unconquerable mountains coming from the Gryphonian capital, while a grave maddening silence overtook the lands of the dragons like it did for eons at end. Nothing changed, and nobody was there to greet the wandering beast. The clever animal found himself directionless, stripped of his experiences, left with only shells and fragments of agonies to torment himself and others.

That clever animal was man.
---

With Regards
TheGreekDollmaker
>> No. 100268
Well I've got two synopsis for the same story, not sure about either, but here we go I guess...

Tags: [Grimlight][Adventure][Normal]
Additional tags: Story within a story, Past catching up, Misunderstandings, Wolves, Fighting, Dragon.

Synopsis one:
"You're certain we could not tell them that she is there?"

"Yes, if they knew for sure they would have avoided her, Philomena told them enough."

"What about warning her or the other bearers? You could have said more in the letter."

"We've already talked about this, sister, telling them would just make everything worse."

"I hope you're right, Tia, either way, it's in their hooves now."

"Hooves and paws."

Synopsis two:
Finesse Lupus stared at the empty scabbard in his hoof, before looking down at the town in front of them. The princesses were definitely hiding something from them. Maybe they are guiding them? Or maybe they're hiding HER…?

"Ray, what would Silver do?"

The wolf's only answer was walking towards the town, and he was joined a moment later by his alpha, until a thought stopped them in their tracks.

Fluttershy still thinks we tried to kill her.
>> No. 100725
>>96066

Both of these sound like Comedy/Random fics. For the second, that’s fine; for the first, you might want to tone it down a little, if you’re aiming for Slice of Life. The string of fragments and commas definitely gets your “comedy” point across, but it sounds more like wacky-type comedy than straight Slice of Life.

One of the nice/terrible (depending on your perspective) things about comedy fics, especially random/comedy fics, is that they’re intended to break the rules. That makes giving advice difficult, since off-the-wall non-standardness can work quite well.

That said, I can offer a few small pieces of specific advice. Firstly, I’d recommend you remove the quotes around “crazy.” You’re making a direct quote from Twilight, I assume (“Everypony in this town is crazy!”), but those quotes can also be confused for sarcasm. Secondly, “time-looping” with a hyphen. Thirdly, I’d recommend changing “preserved here for transdimensional hilarity.” Saying “this is going to be so hilarious, you guys” is a risky business. If you pull it off, great, but we can judge that for ourselves. If you don’t pull it off, we’re going to be really annoyed. Maybe just “preserved here for future generations”? Or “future/past generations,” if you prefer.
>> No. 100726
>>97675
I think I’ve heard about this one. It’s a story about previous Element-bearers, right?

But it’s really hard to tell that from the synopsis. You mention the Elements, but the story’s about the ponies bearing them. So, at the very least, change those first few words to “The bearers of the Elements of Harmony have forged etc.”

Wait a sec, I think I see some of the problem here. You’re using the phrase “Elements of Harmony” with three meanings: the virtues, the bearers, and the physical objects. One symbol, three referents. That’s fine in the story—creates some interesting ambiguities—but if there’s one thing you don’t want the synopsis to be, it’s ambiguous. So, at least for the synopsis, make it clear which you’re referring to, each time you use “the Elements.”

Please note: I haven’t read this story. All of my criticism here is grounded in hearsay and my own interpretation of your synopsis. If I’ve gone in an entirely unexpected direction... well. Oops? I suppose that’d be the clearest indication that your synopsis isn’t telling me enough.
>> No. 100727
>>99013

Hmm. That’s quite nice. I’d cut the “And” from “And though Celestia etc.”; while it’s not wrong to start a sentence with a conjunction, it’s often considered sloppy, and the sentence works fine without. Maybe take out the hyphen in “first-hoof,” seeing as “firsthand” doesn’t have one? Although “firsthoof” looks a little odd, so eh.

The last half of the last sentence (”when emotions are repressed, when loyalties are abused, and when difficult questions are ignored for too long”) is a little vague for my tastes. I’d like to see a little more specificity there, especially since the earlier stuff is nicely concrete. But it works fine as-is, so do as you see fit.
>> No. 100728
>>99048

In the title, "the" should be lowercase.

Your main problem here is in the use of ambiguous subjects and even-more-ambiguous pronouns.

>“The only voice in a pony’s head should be her own.”
It’s not clear whether Twilight has a voice in her head, or one of her friends does, or even if they’ve all got little voices. Make that clear.

>Everything comes at a price. And It has come to collect.
The caps leads me to believe you’re using “It” as a proper noun, and talking about a self-aware, malevolent entity. However, “It” is naturally a pronoun, and its current antecedent is “a price.” Unless you’re writing a horror story about sentient economics, that’s probably worth rephrasing. (Also, avoid starting sentences with conjunctions.)

One last bit on those last two lines. The line break is unnecessary—I get that it’s dramatic, but it’s dramatic in a hammy way. Just keep it as one line.


More generalized criticism: Darkness often thrives on mystery, so I understand that you don’t want to give too much away regarding your It. However, synopses can’t be mysterious. Be concrete, be up-front about what the conflict is and what its stakes are. (Everything I know about storytelling, I learned from narrativist RPGs! Not really, but those sorts of considerations are very helpful. Anyway.) While your antagonist might be mysterious, you can certainly tell us about how Twilight and her friends are in danger, and how much they stand to lose.
>> No. 100729
>>99925

Not sure what you mean by “sacred gerbil”; a quick Google reveals only some mis-quoted LeGuin and, um, a fake church based in Canada. I’d assume a pun on “sacred cow”?

You can drop the extra commas on the tags, and “Tranche de Vie” might come off as pretentious.

Right now, I’m imagining a slow, sweet, introspective, and mostly-peaceful story. If you want to contrast that with AB and Scoot’s shenanigans, you’d need to be a bit more... shenaniganny, but otherwise I think you’ve gotten your point across. It’s not usually my kind of story, but it sounds... nice, you know? Lying out on the grass reading, something like that. It’s enough, is what I mean. Not a whole lot of advice for improvement that I can offer you: you get your point across, and people who want to read that sort of story will see this synopsis and know that it’s the kind of story they want to read.
>> No. 100730
>>99926

Semicolon (“untraversable; and”) should be a comma. Some other comma errors: will, she can alter; reason, reality around; parasite whom she has. “That is until, at the very edge” makes me uncomfortable, too.


Your first couple sentences, about the shifting nature of reality, don’t feel integrated into the rest. Is the stagnant nature of humanity infectious, and thus dangerous?

Also vagueness and lack of names: “for some reason” and “a spacefaring parasite.”

My main complain, though, is this: this synopsis feels choppy to me. Some paragraph breaks might improve your flow. You’re feeling kind of... mechanical, I guess? Lots of exposition, delivered quickly but drily. Lots of elevated diction makes you feel stiff, words like “exponentially,” “uninhabitable,” “untraversable,” “unbeknownst.” Even “whom” is pretty formal. Describing a period of time as “the last couple of centuries” is informal, though, and thus sticks out. You don’t have to be all, “Reality’s really flexible and you can totally change the world if you feel like it”-type informal, but, well, I think the synopsis would be improved if you’d soften up a bit.
>> No. 100731
>>100018

Okay, if you’re going to write a deconstruction, you need to push that in your synopsis. Push it hard. Right now you’ve got introspection, you’ve got philosophizing (or faux-philosophizing, depending on your perspective), and you’ve got humans.

That reads as bog-standard Human in Equestria. You’ll get readers expecting bog-standard Human in Equestria. If you’re turning HiE on its head, you’ve got a good chance of pissing off those readers, and people who might be interested in such a deconstruction won’t have ever opened it.

You can pimp out your philosophizing later, once we’re already in the story; right now you are a drunk at the bar with your arm around my shoulder, trying to tell me why the world is the way it is. It doesn’t matter if you’re insightful and original, because my main thought is, Dammit, all I wanted to do was get a drink.

What makes your story different? What makes your story worth reading? If you’re doing a deconstruction, make sure we know that from the beginning.
>> No. 100732
>>100268

Your tags are too much. I assume they’re the EqD-bound tags? EqD wants five words; occasionally people get away with five tags, one or two of which are two words long. You have six tags totalling eleven words. That ain’t good.

Your second synopsis has a tense error—”they are guiding them.” Make sure you fix any tense errors in the actual story.

I don’t like either of these options. They’re not really synopses or summaries; they’re excerpts from the actual story. We don’t get to know anything outside of those two little excerpts. We don’t get to know the story.


In a theoretical Synopsis Review Thread, Mk. II (in two hundred more posts), I’d be more thorough in the OP with my list of rules/guidelines. My rule number one for writing synopses is this:

>Don't be coy.

Okay, and Rule Zero is "Fix your typos, dumbass." Really, that “Don’t try to fit a whole chapter it there” laughs at me every time I open this thread. Damn you!

Anyway.

Don't be coy. Don't stand there all pretty and mysterious, fluttering your eyelashes and whispering, hoping for someone to come close enough to hear you.

Show us what you got. The synopsis isn't there to flirt, it's there to do business. It's not saying, "Well, maybe you want to read this?" and it's not just saying, "You want to read this." The synopsis says, "You want to read this, and here's why."

Around here, you'll often hear people say, "Write for yourself." That is good and true and beautiful advice.

BUT NOT HERE. The synopsis is written for your reader. The synopsis is selling your fic to a reader that you have to believe doesn't give a crap. "You should read this, and here's why."

(The tags and image are also part of this, as is the title to some extent. I think the misunderstanding is why people freaked out when FiMFic limited its stories to five character tags. All of that stuff isn't for you; it's for your readers, and your readers-to-be.)



So don’t be mysterious. Don’t give us an excerpt, or a hint. Don’t flirt, do business. Your story can be slow and sweet and sensuous, but in your synopsis? You’ve got two minutes in the broom closet, and you’d better impress me.
>> No. 100735
And with that, I think the past month's queue has been cleared. If I missed you, please call me out.
>> No. 100743
>>100727

Thanks for that :)

>I’d cut the “And” from “And though Celestia etc.”; while it’s not wrong to start a sentence with a conjunction, it’s often considered sloppy, and the sentence works fine without.
Point taken.

>Maybe take out the hyphen in “first-hoof,” seeing as “firsthand” doesn’t have one? Although “firsthoof” looks a little odd, so eh.
It does, doesn't it? I actually had it initially as firsthoof, but figured that it was weird to read. Not the biggest of deals, though.

>The last half of the last sentence (”when emotions are repressed, when loyalties are abused, and when difficult questions are ignored for too long”) is a little vague for my tastes.
By this do you mean that you'd like me to be more specific about the themes of the story in this part?

Thanks again for your help.
>> No. 100746
>>100018

Son of a... I forgot to mention that this was a deconstruction of HiE stories in the synospis.

No, seriously, this may be "bog-standard", whatever that is, but my original thought process was that you would read the (faux) philosophy, get a faint idea of what is going on, and then realise that this is intented as a decostruction.

Either way, I am writing another synopsis for this.

Correct Version:
"There once was a clever animal.

Between the uncountable star systems and light years separating them, it found itself in Equestria. The trees grew old as spring came, their leaves continued to fall around Equestria, the hummings of joy and festivities echoed between unconquerable mountains coming from the Gryphonian capital, while a grave maddening silence overtook the lands of the dragons like it did for eons at end. Nothing changed, and nobody was there to greet the wandering beast. The clever animal found himself directionless, stripped of his experiences, left with only shells and fragments of agonies to torment himself and others.

That clever animal was man.

---
A serious deconstruction of Human In Equestria stories. "

Does this change your expectations?

(Thank you for the harsh critisism.)
>> No. 100817
>>100730
Thank you for the review.
>> No. 101025
>>100732
Thank you for taking the time to do this, points taken.
>> No. 101027
File 133620232382.png - (117.82KB , 285x320 , 1.png )
101027
So I've been wondering about a fic of mine. It's called "Pipsqueak the Valiant's Adventure Journal!", tagged [Slice-of-life], and the title says it all: it's Pipsqueak's journal.

The current summary is, horrendously: "A series of entries depicting Pipsqueak's life before and after arriving in Ponyville."

The additional tags: Origins, Redemption, Innocence, No Imagination Sequences, Adventures!

Spoilers: Pretty much a look at the world beyond Ponyville through the eyes of an innocent foal. While the summary is dead accurate, I feel that it's really clinical. There is a strong element of adventure, or so I'd like to think; should I add the [Adventure] tag as well, or does [Slice-of-life] cover it?
>> No. 101028
File 133620283222.png - (120.45KB , 400x200 , shep.png )
101028
>>101027

You're gonna put in the work that it takes to write a fanfic, and that's all you have to say about it?

Come back when you're willing to do more than just say what's in your fic like you're reading off a list.
>> No. 101029
No need to be so condescending. The whole point is to get feedback - if you don't explain what he's doing wrong, how is he supposed to learn?
>> No. 101030
>>101028
Ah, I forgot to mention: I'm looking for discussion on how to go about it, because if I did know what to do, I'd already have done it.
>> No. 101037
>>101029

Just being in character.

What I'm saying is, that's not just clinical, that's downright boring. Go ahead and get cute with the description, people expect it of you anyway.
>> No. 101038
>>101030

That's enough of the name. It's hard to be in-character for a character who was designed to only kinda, sorta have a character.

I dunno, say something about youthful innocence or being an outsider. You know how Ion-Sturm gets pissy about rhetorical questions in synopses? Those people are trying to be cute and melodramatic. Be like that. But don't use a rhetorical question lest you piss Iron-Sturm off.
>> No. 101043
Daring Do and the Journey to the Center of Equestria
[Dark][Adventure]
When disaster strikes Equestria, Twilight Sparkle and her friends are called upon to journey through the monters' prison of Tartarus and into the lost caverns below. Beneath the land they know lie miles of tunnels filled with countless dangers and vicious creatures lost to time and light. Our intrepid heroines follow in the hoofsteps of a doomed expedition led by the most accomplished explorer in history as they face the trials that pushed even a living legend to her limits. They will find that the most fearsome foe is the dark emptiness of the furthest depths, a mirror of horrors that drives even the strongest of ponies toward insanity. The bearers of the Elements of Harmony may learn that they can only venture so far out of their depth and still hope to return when they join Daring Do in...

The Journey to the Center of Equestria.

Not sure about the additional tags. Probably "Ever Deeper and Ever Darker"
>> No. 101045
File 133622924816.png - (428.81KB , 640x400 , 40445 - Artist Moe Landscape background old_royal_castle old_ruins panoramic.png )
101045
>>70737 Shooting for ambiguous here. If it's just in general a bad approach, I'll scrap it and do a traditional synopsis.

Eight-Hundred Millennia
[Sci-fi][Adventure][Dark]
"Just once, so I can see what it's like."

That was the last thing I said to my friends before I leaped into the unimaginable expanse of eternity...
>> No. 101061
File 133624155284.png - (262.39KB , 1039x1024 , celestia_by_johntb-d4dr5me.png )
101061
This could be interesting! Although I'm pretty sure there is some grammar error in my synopsis.... Oh well, critique is always nice. The last line might be the weak one.

Rigor Mortis
[Dark] [Alternative Universe] [Crossover (World War II)}

My name is Rigor Mortis. For years I have prepared for this day, the day when I can finally let the world know my story. The story about how an ordinary doctor was granted the power to research anything he could think about, and how he abused it in ways unfathomable by ponykind. The story about how the same doctor years later used what he had learned during those years of power for his own well being.
>> No. 101167
File 133628496724.jpg - (3.19KB , 125x124 , 132407640236s.jpg )
101167
>>101038
Heh. No harm done.

I guess it's the journal format: what would you expect if you were to pick up someone's diary? The front half is Pipsqueak living a simple foal's life and discovering a pirate ship-wreck. The second half has him being kidnapped and traversing the continent. I'm not sure what my hook is, aside from narrative voice. I'm at a loss as to how to summarize it all. =s being cutesy... any examples come to mind?
>> No. 101286
>>70737
im looking for help with this just call me ultimaomega for refrence Outline for “Return of Chaos”

So i had this crazy idea for season three opener (just a idea) so crazy stuff starts to happen in Ponyville and whatnot mane 6 immediately blame discord he actually turned a new leaf and is not doing it so as it turns out discords father pandemonium is causing it they try to defeat him with the elements turns out you can’t they go to celestia and she talks about elements of chaos (which are crazy anti elements) and their pilots who somehow(but that's 6 different stories)they meet their polar opposites (the mane six) so all 16 of them(mane six anti six male leader from wonder bolts luna celestia and discord) go to jade opened by anti six (entrance to hell (awwww yeahhh ff2 reference)) but are stopped by gatekeeper (cue pendulum the other side) he explains that the elements are controlled by evil spirits in tartarus in which must be defeated by the group and that he is the first one (anti magic) ridiculous fight scene they lose because he is so BA so male wonder bolts guy sacrifices himself and admits his love fo RD(*poker face*)(cue pendulum voyager) they fight him in his weakened stance defeat him and head on..... this is the weird part cause i can’t think of an order but... Fight song and element list.....

fasten your seatbelts anti fun (hooded spirit never shows his face) (but pinkie pie defeats it with fun lol)

mutiny anti loyalty get it? (i dont know)(thinking a chaotix) ( discord is hypnotized into evil but rainbow takes them both down)

showdown anti truth(CRYSTALLUX THE CHANGELING KING) ( guy lies them into hate apple jack doesn’t believe it and beats him DOUUWWN)

the island anti kind (ghost knight) ( much like first element fight all 15 fight and lose fluttershy asks him nicely he says no and on the HAWWW she goes all hurricane fluttershy and beats him ,once again, DOUUWWN)

crush anti generosity(SOME MANTICORE) (but battle would consist of guy taking everything from wings to element and become some beast but is destroyed by his own power) Rarity: and by his extreme lack of fashion DUH!

…. and so in some order that happens and when they get to pandemonium's lair (que pendulum IMMERSION) they all try separately but bond together and using the power of friendship,harmony, love, hate and chaos rip pandemonium piece by piece and shoot him into the void to never be seen again......So they think.... this crazy story was inspired by listening to pendulum and walking through the woods for hours so yeah

Loose ends: (prototype) names of anti team
All boys except taks
Monoscale (RD) leader
Pears (AJ)
Commons (RA)
Corona (TW) (possible pet: taks)
Gliderage (FS)
Quiet cakes (PP)
>> No. 101288
File 133635261291.gif - (3.48MB , 220x184 , b6a.gif )
101288
>>101286
Gonna go out on a limb and say this is a 'sprite.
>> No. 101316
File 133637099261.jpg - (8.21KB , 100x100 , mouse.jpg )
101316
"To Make a Souffle, You Must Break a Few Eggs."
[Comedy][Slice of Life]

Rainbow Dash was just looking for a nice easy day off enjoying her favorite pastime, cloud napping, when she got wrangled into cooking a dessert for Twilight’s dinner party. Unfortunately not only can Dash not cook, but she has no idea what a souffle even is.

When the only pony Dash can turned to for help is Pinkie Pie, will either her sanity or body survive Pinkie’s aid?
>> No. 101375
This is the third (fourth?) attempt at a synopsis for my story which, while miles ahead of the previous attempts, could still use some TLC, perhaps.

Rainbow Typhoon
Rainbow Dash... Sometimes reckless, often daring, always loyal. Her one goal in life is to become a Wonderbolt, and with a little help from a hurricane, her fondest wish may come true. But storms are unpredictable, and a monster of a storm is the most unpredictable of all - and the most dangerous. The plans of a brave little pegasus mean nothing to a hurricane, and Rainbow Dash may end up facing far more than she can handle.

How far can you push a Rainbow?
>> No. 101738
>>100743
As I’ve said before, it’s my opinion that synopses should be as concrete as possible. When I say it’s vague, all I mean is: which emotions, whose loyalties, what questions?
>> No. 101739
>>100746
If you’re aiming for intentionally pretentious fauxlosophy, I would warn you not to. You’re running full-speed into the sharp end of Poe’s Law: for every loopy, intentionally ridiculous mantra you come up with, someone’s already come up with the same thing said sincerely. Your readers don’t know that you’re poking fun at it; they’ll just think you’re another weirdo trying to sell a new-age state of mind.

So, I said that you need to get across that you’re writing a deconstruction. Saying “This is a deconstruction” certainly does that... but, well, it’s hardly the most elegant way to do so, now is it.

What is a deconstruction? It’s when you take the rules of a story and run them to their natural conclusion, a conclusion which the original work ignores. So how is your story “deconstructing” Human-in-Equestria?

There are several paths to take with such a deconstruction. What consequences do you talk about that other Human-in-Equestria stories avoid? What makes your story a deconstruction, rather than a straight HiE?

That’s the information your synopsis should confer. That’s why we want to read your story. So tell us that.

Let’s look at your current version. In fact, let’s look at your synopsis already knowing what information you want to confer; namely, that you’re writing a deconstruction of HiE. This is extremely generous, because a synopsis is intended to attract the interest of a previously ignorant reader. I’m using this tack because I think it might show you a bit better where you need to clarify.

>A clever animal.
Deconstruction, human in Equestria. So perhaps what you’re deconstructing is the notion that humanity has some quintessential difference from ponykind? Or perhaps you’re deconstructing the notion that sapient beings have some quintessential difference from non-sapient beings. Or perhaps you’re trying to be cleverly philosophical and failing. We don’t know yet.

>uncountable star systems and light years separating them
So is this a musing on the coldness of the universe—that the vast majority of it is blank, uninhabited void? Is it a musing on the fecundity of the universe—”uncountable star systems,” teeming with incomprehensible life? Is it a combination of those two—the universe is full of life, but we don’t know any of it, and we’re all alone, but together in our solitude? Is it a jab at previous attempts to meld the real world and Equestria with either space travel or dimension-hopping? Is it another empty phrase? I’m not sure.

>The trees grew old as spring came, their leaves continued to fall
(Grammatically speaking, this is a fragment. Make it a complete sentence.)
So is this a story about aging and death? Or perhaps it’s about time in general, and the passing thereof. Or the natural cycle of the seasons, which then ties in to other natural cycles—spring, thus fertility, thus birth. Is this supposed to imply a romance?

>the Gryphonian capital [...] the lands of dragons
(The show’s spelling is “griffon.” I know, it bugs me too.)
This is pretty clear, then. You’re talking about some of the other known sapients, so I assume you’re bringing them into the story. Why, though—to show the reactions of other cultures to humanity? To emphasize the cultural and biological differences between different sapient species, and show their fundamental incompatibility? Maybe it’s the opposite, maybe you’re showing that sapience is a deep connection in and of itself. Or perhaps you’re just trying to worldbuild.

>shells and fragments of agonies to torment himself and others
So it’s a story about the inherent cruelty of mankind, causing suffering for no reason other than that we can. Or perhaps he’s tormenting others in a misguided attempt to alleviate his own suffering? Or perhaps it’s metaphorical—you previously say “nobody was there to greet the wandering beast,” so maybe these “others” are constructs of his own imagination? Or maybe, again, it’s more fauxlosophy.

>A serious deconstruction of Human In Equestria stories
This is straightforward. You’re deconstructing HiE. Only... what parts of it are you deconstructing? How? To what ends?


See that close reading? At the end of it, I still have no idea what your story’s about. And normal readers aren’t going to do that sort of analysis.

Don’t play around. Tell us what your story’s about, and why we want to read it, and make sure to get to the point.
>> No. 101740
>>101043
>Twilight Sparkle and her friends are called upon
Passive voice
>monters’ prison
Typo
>Our intrepid heroines follow in the hoofsteps of a doomed expedition led by the most accomplished explorer in history as they face the trials that pushed even a living legend to her limits.
This sentence is rather unwieldy.
>a mirror of horrors
It sounds impressive, but what does it mean?
>may learn
Be definite. Avoid “might”s and “maybe”s.
>The bearers of the Elements of Harmony may learn that they can only venture so far out of their depth and still hope to return when they join Daring Do in... The Journey to the Center of Equestria.
Another awkwardly long sentence.

You’ve got borderline LUS: in addition to your “they”s, you refer to the group as
>Twilight Sparkle and her friends
>Our intrepid heroines
>The bearers of the Elements of Harmony

You seem to be saying that Daring Do’s based on a real character. I don’t know how clear canon is on her fictionality, but this might raise hackles. (Even if canon leaves you the loophole. People like to have opinions on things they don’t know about.)

Finally,
>in...

>The
is an obvious, ham-handed, and ultimately failed attempt at trying to translate the Dramatic Pause into textual form. Take it out.
>> No. 101741
>>101045
>Eight-Hundred
No hyphen is necessary. Also, I know Writers Can't Do Math, but be careful on your time periods nonetheless. A quick google says that humans first made fire about 800000 years ago; if that's not the tech period you're looking for, revise.

I don’t like it when writers are vague in their synopses. Long explanations can be found above, but the gist of it is this: the point of a synopsis is to tell a reader what to expect and why to read. Vagueness does neither.
>> No. 101742
>>10161
You’ve a curly brace after “War II)” instead of the proper bracket.

>The story about how an ordinary doctor was granted the power to research anything he could think about, and how he abused it in ways unfathomable by ponykind.
and
>The story about how the same doctor years later used what he had learned during those years of power for his own well being.
are both fragments.

>an ordinary doctor was granted the power to research
Physicians aren’t really medical researchers.

>power to research anything he could think about
Maybe I’m missing something, but that doesn’t seem like a “power” to me. If you can think about it, and you can design an experiment, then you can research it. Even if the most obvious experiment would be unethical, there are often ways to redesign the experiment, or use a model, or something.

So. If I’m reading this correctly, you’re writing about Pony Mengele. That’s... that’s a thing you can do. If you want to write it, then you should write it. But the synopsis is about why we, as readers, should want to read it. What are you doing with the story of Pony Mengele that would make us want to read it for any reason besides Bile Fascination?
>> No. 101743
>>101286
I’ma follow >>101288’s lead on this one. If you’re being sincere, then clean up and try again.
>> No. 101745
>>101316
I like my soufflés to have the accented E, but that's because I'm a weirdo.

>a nice easy day off enjoying her favorite
I believe proper structure would be “day off to enjoy,” but I’m not entirely sure. Right now, it sounds off to me.

>Unfortunately not only can Dash not cook, but she has no idea what a souffle even is.
“Not only” pairs with “but also.” Revise this sentence for proper parallel structure.

Cut the rhetorical question.

A slightly less clinical synopsis might help you, seeing as you’re writing [Comedy]. What kind of comedy are you writing—goofy, wacky, black, wry, what? In particular,
>her favorite pastime, cloud napping
and
>When the only pony Dash can turned to for help is Pinkie Pie, will either her sanity or body survive Pinkie’s aid?
have a hint of wryness which might do with expansion.
>> No. 101746
>>101375

It’s often considered sloppy to start a sentence with a conjunction. Avoid doing so, especially in a synopsis.

Avoid using rarer punctuation marks, such as ellipses, colons, semicolons, and em dashes, in synopses.

Avoid using fragments in synopses.

Avoid using rhetorical questions in synopses.

Be concrete with your conflict and its stakes. Be definite. Avoid words like “may.” Avoid vague portents of danger like “more than she can handle.”

>a monster, a storm, the most unpredictable
Seek parallelism in your articles
>> No. 101747
That's everything for now, I think.
>> No. 101749
>>101746

So "The" was okay, right? :D
>> No. 101778
What Went Wrong
[Adventure] [Slice-of-Life]
One year has passed since the events of "A Canterlot Wedding" and the once-unshakable bond between the Elements of Harmony is beginning to crumble, weakened by a hundred little problems that nopony is quite sure how to deal with anymore. What they need is something to remind them of the magic of friendship. What they're going to get instead is a wall-eyed pony named Derpy Hooves and all the trouble that comes with her. I invite you to join Ponyville's unluckiest mailmare and all of your favorite characters on a wonderous journey through tales of the past and present, through a briar patch of mystery and intrigue, and deep into the dark heart of a century-spanning riddle that was never meant to be solved . . .
>> No. 101891
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101891
>>101739

This is more helpful. I get what you mean now.

The burden, though, lies on me. I have written a shit ton of synopses since the last post. This is not something I can do easily.

But I digress. Here's by best take on the synopses, in the order which I think is best.

Very Straightforward Summary
“A human with amnesia wakes up in Equestria. Hated and feared by the inhabitants of this world, haunted and watched by a being outside reality, he embarks on a Adventure to learn the truth of his existence.

Straightforward Summary
“Three Hundred Years after the Fall of Discord, a amnesiac human regains consciousness on Equestria. He is hated and feared everywhere he goes, both gryphon and pony alike, stirring conflict and panic due to the myths behind his species. He embarks on a long odyssey, walking through continents to find the truth of his existence and to get home. All the while a being beyond the reaches of reality haunts, watching him for reason he does not know. He will either learn the truth or die trying.

Synopses 1:
Three Hundred Years after the fall of Discord; the echoes of panic were heard as he was sighted at the Gryphonian mountains. Nobody knew who he was, not even himself, leading him to embark on a Journey to find answers to his questions. Everywhere he went he was greeted by fear or hate, unwelcome by the world and its inhabitants, leaving only memories of his existence. He scrambled and fought for every bit of gain, only in the end to ask himself the eternal question.

“Why”
---
A serious deconstruction of Traditional HiE stories.


Summary 2:

Three hundred years after Discord’s fall
Nobody knew who he was, not even himself
Born out of ignorance, a fate to befall.
So he left the lands, on a journey’s end.

One whose fame is already tainted
The mountains of madness he shall ascend
Everywhere he goes, weep and hatred.
The nature of his existence to comprehend.

Haunted by the reaches of that not known
To learn the truth, how cruel it may be
Whose torments will only make it grow.
Allas, such truth may not exist.

Behold, man.
---
A serious deconstruction of Traditional HiE stories.

Synopses 3:
The gods always want a sacrifice on their altars. Thats the only way I can explain why I am here. An unfortunate soul, whose heart beat the fastest and strongest. From the moment I set upon this world I was robbed of everything, from the day I set out to learn of this world I was feared and hated, from the weeks which I spent in lands unknown I was tormented by a being that transcends the heavens, from the months of reaching the fields of heaven I was cast down to nothing more than a monster. If such is my fate, than so be it.

I shall go on as long as my legs will take me, through continents and underworlds, through hells and heavens between.

I will find out why.
---
A serious deconstruction of Traditional HiE stories.

Synopses 4:
“Once upon a time at the mountains of madness.”

He appeared in a split of a moment, a flash that set him upon this world, directionless, wounded, robbed of his own memories. The world saw him as an abomination, a monster whose actions bought ill to gryphon and ponies alike. But I saw the splendor of his actions. I watched him grow bit by bit in this world called Equestria, saw him more than a clever animal. I blessed and haunted him with my own will and he journeyed in lands unknown, an Odyssey at the search of home. I watched him as he looked at the heavens above and prayed if there was an answer to his existence. He gave himself through that wall of flesh that he will go as far as his legs will take him, and by all means I believe him. Maybe, unlike the frightened screams of those before him, he will grow long enough to suit my purpose.
---
A serious deconstruction of Traditional HiE stories.

Out of the 14 I wrote, these are the best I could come up with. If this doens't work, I will have to work some serious overtime to think and research about this. Oh, and not a Native English speaker.

With Regards
TheGreekDollmaker
>> No. 101953
File 133671057935.gif - (423.50KB , 509x406 , Cheerilee Derp.gif )
101953
So I could use a touch more advice on my synopsis.

At current, per your previous advice, I have:

"Cheerilee's flowers symbolize her students blooming, and the smiles are the cheer she brings. At least, that's what she tells everypony who asks."

I feel like it's missing something. I want to add in a key plot point of the story - the fact that Cheerilee's "special talent" was gardening, but that she chose to pursue teaching because it was her dream to be a teacher. (The point of the story is her being insecure about lying about the cutie mark, and finally realizing that a pony's passion is what is always more important).

The idea of going against a cutie mark is one I've seen discussed a lot, so I want to put something in the synopsis about it...i'm just a touch worried since it sort of gives away the "Swerve" at the end of chapter 1. Then again, there's really no other way to go about it...

I don't know, I feel like I want to give the reader of the synopsis the idea that the story has something to do with pursuing passion over your cutie mark, but without giving away too much. Any advice you could give me on the matter would be hugely appreciated.
>> No. 102006
Title: Bloodline
Author: Jake The Army Guy
Tags: Dark, HiE
Synopsis: Albert Pomeroy is a psychopath who has been terrorizing Houston for the past two years. Now, he finds his was into Equestria, a world that has not known violence like his in centuries. Hot on his heels is Detective Robert Barlow, who is determined to stop this mad man no matter what the cost. As the authorities refuse to believe that anything is amiss, it's up to The Mane Six and Barlow to stop Pomeroy. But not everything is as it seems...

I've been thinking his gives away too much. Like it spells out the whole plot without making you curious. I'm resubmitting to EqD in a few days, so I'd love it if some kind person could help me with this. Thanks!
>> No. 102326
Title: Chronokeeper (subject to change)
I would go into the synopsis and tags of this story but, similar to the few prereaders I've had so far, I could not come up with an accurate answer for either of these
Some tags can be given, but nothing definite.
[sad] [friend-shipping] [slice of life?]
This is a very short answer, as to not make a huge post on the thread. I have a much better answer taking up about 3/4 of a page at the beginning of the fic. Please, at least read that before you ignore this
Link:https://docs.google.com/document/d/12rd_R3sSa_r_EEQc0NplqIWTx5ID9wN2B18JDxk54Oo/edit
Google doc with commenting enabled
>> No. 102338
>>102326
Google doc without sharing enabled, though.
>> No. 102376
Sorry, fixed.
>> No. 102384
>>102326
You do realize this thread is only for reviewing a synopses, right? Your story won't be reivewed in here.
>> No. 102388
>>102384
Sorry, This is the first time I've actually posted. It's all a learning experience I suppose.
>> No. 102390
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102390
>>102388
No, it's not. If you had read the sticky, you would know the rules. If you had read the thread's OP you would know have noticed that it specifically states that this isn't a review thread for stories.
Right now, the only thing that's "learning" is me learning patience.
Le sigh.
>> No. 102473
>>101749
Referring to the article parallelism thing? In retrospect, I’m not entirely sure why I called that out. It’s not wrong, but it sets my grammar sense a-tingling. A monster, a storm, then the most unpredictable, the most dangerous—something about it bugs me. Feel free to disregard that bit of advice; it’s entirely possible my grammar sense hit a false positive.
>> No. 102474
>>101778
Referencing out-of-universe things like episode titles is generally a bad idea.

As far as I’m aware, Twilight and her friends aren’t ever referred to as “the Elements of Harmony” in-universe.

>the once-unshakable bond between the Elements of Harmony is beginning to crumble, weakened by a hundred little problems that nopony is quite sure how to deal with anymore.
I have something of a problem with this. The majority of the episodes focus on Twilight and her friends dealing with the little problems which arise in friendships. To claim that they’ve let all that ill-will build up strikes me as contrary to the nature of the show.

>I invite you
Addressing the reader directly is always a risky proposition. Strongly consider removing this aspect of your synopsis.

>wonderous
wondrous

>through tales of the past and present, through a briar patch of mystery and intrigue, and deep into the dark heart of a century-spanning riddle that was never meant to be solved
Vagueness. I’ve given my arguments against vagueness before, and they still apply.

>...
An ellipsis. I’ve given my arguments against uncommon punctuation before, and they still apply.
>> No. 102475
>>101953
I feel it’s better to give away a little too much than to be too mysterious. The two-sentence synopsis you have is pretty scant right now—I think you could do with more detail. What events prompt Cheerilee’s introspection? Why now? That sort of thing. Anchor her introspection in the outside world.
>> No. 102476
>>102006
Don’t worry about giving away too much. In my opinion, it’s much better to give away too much than to be too mysterious. Mysterious can work, on a few rare occasions, but I think it’s better to let your reader know what they’re in for.

(This is, of course, my opinion. There are many people who would disagree with me.)

(Those people are wrong.)

(At least in my opinion.)

Anyway. My thoughts and criticisms:
>a psychopath
I think I recall from the Ask a Pre-Reader thread that this used to be “a serial killer,” and you changed it to avoid auto-rejection? Hrmm. I definitely prefer “a serial killer,” because it’s more accurate; psychopathy is just a loosely-defined personality disorder. Since fics aren’t going through Seth anymore, you might be able to get away with it. Although “a serial killer” also implies a certain level of gore, which you may not want to do. Hrmm.

>finds his was
finds his way
>mad man
madman

>The Mane Six
This is purely a fandom term. As such, I discourage its use in non-meta stories.

>But not everything is as it seems...
Googling “But not everything is as it seems” gives me 2.38 million hits. That’s enough for every man, woman, and child in Houston. It’s very, very, very clichéd. Also, you end with an ellipsis, and you can do better than that.

Overall, I think this synopsis works quite well. It establishes a clever premise which avoids the clichés of HiE, it names your main characters, and it establishes a conflict and its stakes.
>> No. 102477
>>101891
I’m a little uncomfortable doing several reviews of the same thing—I feel it dulls my responses as I become over-familiar with the work. Too used to its strengths, too inured to its flaws. For the moment, I’m going to leave this for someone else to take.
>> No. 102492
>>102476
>finds his was
>was

Gosh-dammit! See this is what happens when you read something TOO much! I sent it like that to EqD yesterday. Speaks loads for my chances...

Anywho, thanks for the feedback! The finished product is this:

Albert Pomeroy is a psychopath who has been terrorizing Houston for the past two years. Now, he finds his was into Equestria, a world that has not known violence like his in centuries. Hot on his heels is Detective Robert Barlow, who is determined to stop this deranged killer no matter what the cost. As the blood begins to spill, it's up to The Mane Six and Barlow to stop Pomeroy. But not everything is as it seems...

I kept "psychopath, as to avoid the dreaded auto-reject. Put "killer" in as a compromise.
>> No. 102558
Think I'll throw mine in here and see what's up

Friendship's Touch
[Adventure][Dark]
The day after the Lunar Festival, two ponies from Celestia and Luna's past appear in Ponville with a warning shortly before fire begins to rain down from the sky. While the citizens of Equestria repair the damage to their cities; the girls along with the newly discovered Elements of Life must set out with the strangers to face an enemy the royal sisters and their two friends thought long defeated. While the sisters themselves act as decoys to protect their subjects from further attacks.
>> No. 102587
I've got this fic on the backburner at the moment (it'll be my summer project), but I'd really appreciate any thoughts on how effective this synopsis is/etc. Thank you in advance to any reviewer.

Title: Glitched
Tags: [SciFi][Dark]
Synopsis: When Twilight becomes trapped in a time loop on the week of her brother's wedding, she makes up her mind to escape, stop the Changelings, and save the Royal Couple in the process. But this is no ordinary Groundhog Day, and as the Loops go on, her mind and those of her friends will be driven to the brink. After all, when you’re whirling through eternity, one more step might be all that’s needed to fall into the darkness—forever.
>> No. 102642
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102642
I'm getting a bit complacent (waiting for my own synopsis to be reviewed), so I figure I'll lend a hand on a few queue'd synopses to move things along.

I'm being totally altruistic. I swear.

>>101953

Here's your original:
>"Cheerilee's flowers symbolize her students blooming, and the smiles are the cheer she brings. At least, that's what she tells everypony who asks."

I would suggest adding something to put more emphasis on the general theme in the story. For example:

>"A Cutie Mark is meant to represent the personality and special talent of each pony that has one. Cheerilee's flowers symbolize her students blooming, and their smiles are the cheer she brings. At least, that's what she tells everypony who asks."

I think it should be fine like that. You don't need to put more emphasis on the actual conflict Cheerilee's mark being a "lie", but the first sentence gives us an introduction that wasn't previously there. I also made a small change ("the" -> "their") to what I deemed to be a bit of awkward wording. Otherwise, this looks fine!
>> No. 102647
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102647
>>101778
This is a bit lengthy, so let's do some line-by-line, shall we?

>What Went Wrong
Nice title. Referential without being ridiculous. Also nicely implies (what I assume to be) the main character.

>One year has passed since the events of "A Canterlot Wedding"
Don't ever use episode titles in your synopses. If you must reference an event, then use its proper, in-universe title. "The Royal Wedding" would work just as well.

>>and the once-unshakable bond between the Elements of Harmony is beginning to crumble,
How so? This is a non-sequitur; it doesn't directly lead from your previous statement, and in fact doesn't make much sense at all in context. I do like the fact that you said EoH instead of "Mane Six" though—it better sets the mood by far.

>>weakened by a hundred little problems that nopony is quite sure how to deal with anymore.
This is an awkward phrase, and kind of pointless besides. What problems are these? Why are they suddenly significant now, and why didn't they matter before? What changed? And what the heck do they have to do with the S2 Finale?

>>What they need is something to remind them of the magic of friendship.
I don't see the problem thus far. So far, all I see is a non-sequitur and some awkward wording. You need a sense of urgency, or at least of tragedy, here, and it's definitely lacking.

>>What they're going to get instead is a wall-eyed pony named Derpy Hooves and all the trouble that comes with her.
This is interesting and nice, but it really needs more to set it up with the [Adventure] tag that you have going on. Thus far, this is reading as a Slice-of-Life/Comedy/Tragedy fic, rather than an [Adventure] one.

>>I invite you to join Ponyville's unluckiest mailmare and all of your favorite characters
Don't address the reader. Unless you're being ridiculously meta (which you're not), then don't adress the reader, or be referential to the fandom in any way.

>on a wonderous journey through tales of the past and present, through a briar patch of mystery and intrigue,
Too flowery. This is a sudden change in tone and diction, and it's not doing you any favors.

>>and deep into the dark heart of a century-spanning riddle that was never meant to be solved . . .
Suddenly, plot! What do you mean, this is the first bit of actual "plot" we've seen? And what do you mean, it doesn't relate to anything else in any way, shape, or form?

So...yeah. Oi.

Good luck revising, and I hope this helped!
>> No. 102657
File 133712904387.png - (185.96KB , 640x360 , Cheerelle.png )
102657
>>102642

>"A Cutie Mark is meant to represent the personality and special talent of each pony that has one. Cheerilee's flowers symbolize her students blooming, and their smiles are the cheer she brings. At least, that's what she tells everypony who asks."

See, I really like that...but I feel like it's completely ignoring the main point of the story, which I want to use as the hook. I don't want "Here's what the lie is" to be the hook, I want the hook to be "here's WHY she was lying. Read on to find out what she learns."

The whole point of the story is Cheerilee realizing that passion, and doing what she loves, is more important than anything and finally beginning to overcome her insecurities about her lie and her cutie mark, concluding with a happy ending....but I'm having trouble conveying even a little bit of that in the synopsis without giving away too much...

Sorry for being so fussy about this, but it's honestly been a lot more difficult than I anticipated to come up with the perfect synopsis...
>> No. 103186
Metamorphosis
[Adventure][Shipping]
A Metamorphosis... a complete and pernament change. A change, that is not always for the better.

Something is coming that will unleash a series of events unlike anything Equestira has every seen. All those touched by these events shall be changed for better or for worse. All that can be done is to brace yourself.

The Oncomining Storm approaches.
>> No. 103188
Here's the synopsis for a sadfic that's currently in editing. The main plot is about Applejack being told the story of the day Winona got put down. She's blind and in hospital, 77 years after the day Winona got put down. Here's the synopsis:

Tags:[Sad][Slice of Life]

Synopsis: Ah can't remember much about that day. All I can remember is that I wanted Winona to fetch a stick. With the help of a kind nurse I'll be able to find out what happens next.
>> No. 103369
The Unread Letter
[Nomal][Sad]
Uneasy is the heart on which lies a crown of guilt. Luna, formerly known as Nightmare Moon, knows this better than most.
Apologies are in order, for the truth behind the thousand years' exile is at once more mundane and even less likely than the legends suggest. Nearing the threshold of a brighter future, Luna writes a simple letter - and in doing so, attempts to leave the shadows of herpast behind.
>> No. 103373
>>103369
Space between "her" and "past", and switch that hyphen for an em-dash.
>> No. 103374
>>103373
I was going to do both of those things, but there's no Edit button.
>> No. 103377
File 133755383674.jpg - (32.00KB , 500x405 , 131578197719.jpg )
103377
>>103374
The edit button is know as "Delete and repost with edits" around here :P.
>> No. 103385
File 133756314930.jpg - (134.02KB , 640x360 , Cheerilee Face.jpg )
103385
It's me again! I made one last edit to the synopsis...I rather like how it looks now. AHEM:

A Cutie Mark is meant to represent the personality and special talent of each pony that has one. Cheerilee's flowers symbolize her students blooming, and their smiles are the cheer she brings. At least...that's what she tells everypony who asks. But after a horrible day at school shakes Cheerilee's confidence, she's forced to confront a question that has plagued her whole life...does a Cutie Mark determine a pony's true destiny?

Any last thoughts would be great.
>> No. 103386
File 133756416903.jpg - (59.87KB , 485x700 , 4Bffw.jpg )
103386
>>103385
Spaces after the ellipses would be a good start. You also seem to abuse them a bit. The second one, at thevery least, could be replaced by a colon (I think).
The first ellipsis should be replaced by a comma and moved to after "asks". Alternatively, it could replace the period between "cheer" and "at".

I find the bit about a Cutie Mark determining your personality to be a bit daft.

Starting a sentence with "but" in exposition is considered poor form. Same applies to "and", "or", "nor" or any other word of their ilk. This rule is relaxed in dialogue, though. "However", "though", and "yet" would be examples of what to replace it with.
>> No. 103422
File 133759221468.jpg - (124.07KB , 894x894 , leather_skies_by_johnjoseco-d3k4a7v.jpg )
103422
Okay, I have an issue. My story has far outgrown my original synopsis, and I need to alter it. It held well with my original conception, but now comprises only a portion of the themes that have evolved. And god forgive me, I used a rhetorical question in it. What the fuck do?
Oh, go and ask for some advice in a thread dedicated to that exact purpose!

Story-
Divergence
http://www.equestriadaily.com/2011/07/story-divergence.html

Old Synopsis-
A different approach to Rainbow Dash's story in Episode 2. The most loyal of ponies faces the most difficult test of her virtue; does she hold the greater loyalty to her friend's wishes and esteem for her, or their safety and wellbeing?

New Synopsis-
HALP

I suppose it kind of goes without saying that those few savants who have actually read the thing would be informed enough to actually field some ideas, but I'd be happy to hear any and all suggestions.

Many thanks!
>> No. 104025
I've went over your previous feedback, and did a new version, hopefully this one is better.
Tags: [Grimlight][Adventure]
Additional tags: Misunderstandings, Giving explanations, Wolves, Fighting, Dragon.

Finesse Lupus and his wolf Ray just intended to pass through Ponyville to get some advice from Celestia’s apprentice before continuing with their journey. One short reunion later, they need to convince Fluttershy, and her friends, that they did not betray her years ago.

Or worse, that they have tried to kill her.


I’m not quite sure that the last line is grammatically correct, and part of me feels like it should have a dash instead of a comma, but the other part thinks it shouldn’t. What do you say?
>> No. 104898
>>102558
>warning shortly
Put a comma in.
>girls along [...] Life must
Along–Life is an appositive, and should be set off with commas.
>cities; the girls
Semicolon should be a comma.
>While the sisters themselves
This is a fragment.

Furthermore, you lack names in your synopsis. You name Celestia and Luna once each, and thereafter refer to them as “the sisters.” You reference “the girls,” who I assume are meant to be the mane six, but I’m not entirely sure. Your OCs are just “two ponies” or “two friends,” and your enemy is “an enemy.” Don’t be afraid of names. Names make characters matter. Presumably you want your characters to matter, and so you should give them names.
>> No. 104899
>>102587
A few capitalized nouns that probably shouldn’t be:
>Changelings
>Royal Couple
>Loops

>her mind and those
Singular/plural disagreement. I’d prefer “her mind and the minds of her friends.”

>Groundhog Day
This is a reference to something out-of-universe, and should thus be removed.

>you’re
This is used as the indefinite/impersonal/generic pronoun, pick your name, but “you” is also English’s second person pronoun. I recommend avoiding second person, even this pseudo-second person.

Otherwise, looks pretty good to me.
>> No. 104902
>>103186
Typos. You’ve got ‘em.
>pernament
>Equestira
>Oncomining

So after reading this synopsis, I can tell you haven’t done much proofreading, and so I rather suspect you’ve not proofread your story either. Other than that? I have no idea who your story’s about, or what it’s about. Except... I dunno, some sort of bad thing happening. With [Adventure] and [Shipping], but no [Dark], so it apparently isn’t all that bad, or at least it’s not focused on badness. So, um, yeah. Try again.Try to actually give me a clue what you’re on about, next time.
>> No. 104903
>>103188
You start with “Ah” and then drop it. Be consistent. I recommend consistency in the direction of “I.” Writing dialect is a helluva lot harder than it looks.

Also, I’m not seeing anything about Applejack being old. Right now I’m thinking she’s in the hospital in the same timeframe as the show, recovering from the same tragic accident which killed Winona. Something with a woodchipper, probably, is what I’m thinking. So clarify the timeframe, and make it clear that “that day” was a long time ago.

Okay, unrelated to the synopsis, I have a conceptual issue here: why would “a kind nurse” be telling her this story? Applejack’s old, she’s blind—she might have memory issues, too. Probably does, if she can’t remember Winona. So why tell her that her dog died eighty years ago? What’s the point, other than to cause her pain? Especially if she’s suffering from the mental deterioration which so often accompanies age, the only purpose of telling her would be to hurt her for a little while, before she forgets again. That’s not kindness. That’s honestly a little disturbing in its cruelty.

And finally, I have to ask: what’s the purpose of this story? That’s not meant to be hostile, it’s an honest question. When writing this, what’s your goal? Is it just to make the audience have a sad? Because that’s a thing you can do, yeah, but, well, that sort of self-indulgent emotional manipulation doesn’t sit well with me. In my opinion, it’s better to have a Story which is sad than to have a Sad which has a story somewhere in it.
>> No. 104904
>>103369
Ion got the typos already, so I won’t mention those.

>Uneasy is the heart on which lies a crown of guilt
That’s a mixed metaphor you’ve got there. A rather odd one, too, if I might say.

>most. ¶ Apologies
No paragraph break is necessary.

The problem with this synopsis is that I’m not sure what the story’s point is. [Sad] is a thing, yes. You can write [Sad] for [Sad]’s sake and people will read it and like it; My Little Dashie is proof enough of that. (Full disclosure, I haven’t read MLD myself, and I fully admit that I may be wrong in regards to its quality.)

But I feel that a (sad) STORY is more virtuous than a SAD (story), and so I believe that you should work to emphasize the fact that you’re writing a story, with all that that implies. Why does Luna write this letter? What motivates her to do so? Apologies are in order—to whom, and why does she choose this particular moment to make those apologies? The title is “The Unread Letter,” so by whom is the letter not read, and why? Those are questions which emphasize the narrative.
>> No. 104905
>>103422
Haven’t read the story, but I can provide at least a little feedback. “Episode 2” is an out-of-universe reference, and should thus be removed (and numbers less than ten should be spelled out). And after some thought, I’ve slightly refined my opinions on questions in synopses, as follows:

Rhetorical questions are inadvisable, but the exception proves the rule in cases not excepted. Questions can be used if they’re answered. E.g., John Dies at the End: “Can these two stop the oncoming horror in time to save humanity? No. No, they can't.” As Minty says, the danger in rhetorical questions is that your readers forget about your ideas in favor of their own. So don’t give them that chance: if you ask a question, provide an immediate answer.

Or, of course, rephrase the question as a statement and avoid the issue entirely.

[The following comments are based on your current synopsis, my speculation and half-remembered discussions of your fic. The following comments may have little to no relation to your actual story.]

I think you’re writing an AU in which Dash takes the Shadowbolts’ offer. If so, you do need to inform readers that you’re starting your changes from a very early point in canon. Don’t use the words “Episode Two,” but do mention where you make changes. This might be a good time to use a carefully-placed question, remembering to answer it immediately afterwards. Something like
>Nightmare Moon tempted Rainbow Dash with promises of fame. Dash, of course, resisted her offers and went on to defeat her with the power of the Elements of Harmony. But what if Dash, in a moment of weakness, had accepted the offer? Well, so-and-so would have happened.
That’s a very rough sketch, and has its own problems: a conjunction starting a sentence, a near-miss on directly addressing the audience, and others. But it might give you a starting point, or spark a few more ideas.
>> No. 104906
>>103539
First sentence is rather long. It’s not wrong, but it is unwieldy.
>Finesse Lupus
This doesn’t sound like a pony name, at all.
>Celestia’s apprentice
Don’t shy away from naming important characters. “Twilight.”
>they have tried
they tried

I advise you to avoid dashes. They’re less common than commas, and thus they draw attention to themselves.

I think this synopsis would benefit from a few more sentences of explanation. Who are your OCs, what are they doing, where are they going, that sort of thing. Your OC protagonist sounds like he’s edging into Mary Sue territory, what with the non-pony name and the wolf companion; fleshing him out would help allay readers’ concerns on this front.
>> No. 104907
>>101891 and >>103422 haven't really received full reviews. Otherwise, as the title says.
>> No. 104926
>>104902

The fact that its rather vague is kinda the point.

Proof reading is something I didn't really do this time and I try to do but most likely fail with my story... hence why I ask for others to help do it.

Anyhow, revised version

Metamorphosis: Storm
[Adventure][Sad]
A completely change of being that can never be reversed.
There is not many forces that can perform such a feat, so it is even more
startling when it occurs.

A change is coming to Equestria. One that cannot be predicted by any pony.
It cannot be stopped no matter what is done. All that came be done is to
brace for the oncoming storm.
>> No. 104953
File 133859526808.png - (125.95KB , 300x209 , wordsfailedher-wip-thumb.png )
104953
Okay... What can we pick apart in the following synopsis?

Words Failed Her
In a world full of magic, books can carry viruses. When reading any correspondence or signpost could infect the unwary, and cases are already starting to turn up around Ponyville, Twilight Sparkle casts the one spell that can give her time: the Curse of Illiteracy. Now she has to figure out how to stop the epidemic... without being able to read.

(Image is just a layout sketch I jazzed up in Photoshop. Not final art by any stretch of the imagination. And only a thumbnail.)
>> No. 104962
File 133859931514.jpg - (91.48KB , 587x501 , Escher,_Metamorphosis_II.jpg )
104962
>>104926
I'm open to discussion on any of my points below.

>A completely change...
Read this out loud, and you will find it makes no sense. I'm guessing you wanted "A complete change" instead.

>A completely change of being that can never be reversed.
This is a sentence fragment. As such, it has little meaning. Again guessing, I think you meant this to refer to the title, like so:
"Metamorphosis: A completely change of being that can never be reversed."

>...can never be reversed
This is an unsupported claim. That doesn't make it wrong, just weak.

>There is not many forces...
Again, read this out loud and you'll see it makes little sense. There are a couple of ways this can be changed, I'm assuming the following is what you meant:
"There areis not many forces..."

>There areis not many forces that can perform such a feat, so it is even more startling when it occurs.
A rather cumbersome sentence, but it makes some sense. The "...when it occurs" part is rather vague however. What is this "it" to which it refers? The metamorphosis or the reversal? I'll assume you mean the metamorphosis.

>>There areis not many forces that can perform such a feat, so it is even more startling when a metamorphosisit occurs.
This is telling the reader they are startled. It might as well tell them they are a banana for all the good this does. The reader will be startled if they wish to be, and not otherwise. It's the writer's job to make them startled, if that's the goal. This isn't likely to happen in a synopsis, so keep it simple. "Just the facts, ma'am."

>A change is coming to Equestria.
Good. A fact. Plain and clear. A little mysterious. Not bad, if a little cliche.

>One that cannot be predicted by any pony.
Another fragment. In a synopsis, fragments aren't the end of the world, but they are weaker than complete sentences. This would need to be attached to the previous sentence, perhaps with an em dash for emphasis. And since "any pony" is probably replacing "any one" and that should be "anyone" then use "anypony"

>A change is coming to Equestria—one that cannot be predicted by anypony.
You could also say:
"An unpredictable change is coming to Equestria."
But that's not much more informative than before.

>It cannot be stopped no matter what is done.
Second half is redundantly superfluous.
"It cannot be stopped."
Or if you really feel like being wordy:
"It cannot be stopped, no matter what."

>All that came be done is to brace for the oncoming storm.
I think you meant "can" not "came"
>All that canme be done is to brace for the oncoming storm.
Not bad. Tossing in a metaphor here at the end, the "storm," might be a touch confusing as it sort of conflicts with the "metamorphosis" from before. Which is it? Metamorphosis or Storm? The title has both, but we can't see the connection.

So... The big question is: What does the reader take away after reading this synopsis?

>An irreversible, unpredictable, unstoppable change is coming.
And then it says to get ready for it, but it's unpredictable so you can't know what to get ready for, and it's unstoppable so getting ready probably won't help anyway. And being irreversible, anything about it you don't like, you are free to hate because it will never get any better.

The synopsis has no information, no conflict, and no hope—even after the grammar is fixed.

If you really want to be vague, you might actually be better off with either no synopsis at all or your only good line so far:

>A change is coming to Equestria.
>> No. 104996
>>104905
Thanks echoes, sorry for the delay, I just noted that you dropped some thoughts on my post. Appreciate it mate.
>> No. 105177
>>104962

So you think that the synopsis even if fixed (I really should read over what I write before posting here...) won't interest people at all?
>> No. 105197
>>105177
It's not so much that it is uninteresting, as it is a lack of hook. If I read five synopses and four of them tell me what their story is about and one doesn't, then the one I read probably won't be the "mystery box."

Think of it like this: you want the reader to read your synopsis and think, "Ooh, that's a good idea for a story."

"Things are going to change," would fail to do that. Also, even if there's a good hook, if the grammar in the synopsis is bad, you've just lost about half of your readers. (At least half won't care, because they wouldn't know bad grammar if it started tap dancing on their head.)

So: #1 hook, #2 grammar, oh and #3 not five pages long. :)
>> No. 105312
>>104906
First, thanks again, and sorry for the delay.

The name I was unsure about myself, and I've wanted to see if someone else would say anything, so I am going to remove "Lupus". I'm probably going to just name him "Finesse", but it's up to change.

About referring to Twilight by name, I avoided doing that because I’ve wanted to note that they don’t go to Twilight because she is Twilight but because she is Celestia’s apprentice. Also, she is just a supporting character in the story. With that in mind, should I still name her?
>> No. 105328
>>104953
I'd advise against the ellipsis, as I so often do.Aside from that, the "magic" →"virus" bothers me just a bit. "Virus," "epidemic"—these are scientific terms with precise meanings, whereas "magic" is both non-scientific and undifferentiated. Of course, Twilight's very scientific in her approach, which may or may not justify the use of more technical terms.

Other than those minor quibbles, looks good to me.
>> No. 105329
>>105177
While you as a writer may want to be vague, the synopsis is for the reader's benefit, not yours. Imagine the following: you want to recommend a book to a friend.

>"I read this really great book! You should read it!"
>"Cool, what's it about?"
>"I'm not telling you."
>"But—"
>"It's about changes.
>"And—"
>"Nope, nope, no more. I've given away too much already."

There are a few works where you have a legitimate reason to avoid giving too much away, in especially short works or where an early-installment plot twist changes the game, but even then you can find something to say. And you have to.
>> No. 105332
>>105312
Hmm. If she's just a supporting character, then she might not need to be named here, but on the other hand, she's important enough to include in the synopsis. I'd err on the side of names. Or (and) flesh out Finesse's reasons for thinking of her as "Celestia's student" rather than "Tiwlight."
>> No. 105333
>>104996
No problem. I'm glad to be of service.
>> No. 105334
>>105332
>Tiwlight
Dang. Well, you know what I meant.
>> No. 105659
>>105197
>>105329

Taking into account what you have both said, I've revised the synopses

Metamorphosis, an irreversible change that occurs both within and without. There are few greater forces in nature that can cause such a change then a storm and one threatens to sweep over Equestria, leaving a trail of destruction and death in its wake… and from the ashes of the old, a dark order shall rise once more, an order thought destroyed for over five hundred years.

Brace thyself, for the oncoming storm.
>> No. 105665
>Metamorphosis, an irreversible change that occurs both within and without.
So, you're using a dictionary-type definition in your synopsis? Not exactly gripping.

>There are few greater forces in nature that can cause such a change then a storm and one threatens to sweep over Equestria, leaving a trail of destruction and death in its wake… and from the ashes of the old, a dark order shall rise once more, an order thought destroyed for over five hundred years.
That, my friend, is a run-on sentence. You have two completely separate ideas here: that storms are great forces of nature and that a dark order thought destroyed will rise again. Also, you use the word "ashes" after referring to a storm; fires are nice and all, but they don't mix with stormy weather all that well unless the ground was ready to burst into flames anyways. Split the ideas up and think about rewording them both. Is the metamorphosis causing the storm, vice versa? The events seem to be linked in some way looking at the title, but nothing definite comes through here.

>Brace thyself, for the oncoming storm.
>thyself
THYSELF!
I'm not a big fan of referencing the reader in synopses unless the story is in second person. I also suggest not using any form of "thy."
>> No. 105841
File 133912892359.png - (114.33KB , 371x428 , star-swirl-1.png )
105841
Got one that could use some opinions:

Star Swirl the Bearded wasn't always a powerful magician—but he was always very, very good at magic. So when the wrong words in the right ear change his greatest asset into a dangerous liability, Star Swirl has to look beyond mere magic for solutions.
>> No. 105847
File 133913441703.png - (264.26KB , 467x479 , 132619971255.png )
105847
>>105841
Doth mine eyes deceive me? Do I spy a sequel?
>> No. 105849
>>105847
>sage
Maaaaybe. Does that one sound interesting enough? I don't think ir has enough of a hook. :/

You're welcome to read the scene I just wrote. Link into the old story first.
>> No. 105854
File 133913838653.jpg - (7.21KB , 239x211 , 23948652-309.jpg )
105854
>>105849
Well anypony who read the first is going to draw the same conclusion I did, so I think it's fine.
>> No. 106146
>>105665

Nothing definite? That's EXACTLY what I'm going for. It tells that there is two things threatening Equestira, enough to interest people but apart from that, no details. Which is exactly what I want.

Also, I like thy.
>> No. 106265
I'm going to be harsh here; I don't mean any personal insults. But this is something many people misunderstand, and it needs to be said.
>>106146
Here's the thing we've been trying to tell you:

The synopsis is not about you.

Various explanations litter this thread, and you can read through and find them if you want, but the essence is this:

The synopsis is not about you.

It's about helping your reader. It's about what will make your reader open your story. When you try to be mysterious and intriguing and vague, that's not doing anything for your reader. When you use "thy" because you like it, that's not doing anything for your reader.

The current synopsis is not helping your reader. It is a means to masturbate your ego.

As a reader, I want to know what I am about to read. As I said before, imagine that two friends want to recommend a story to you.
One friend says,
>"It's a sci-fi adventure."
The other says,
>"It's dark post-apocalyptic sci-fi about a woman suffering from empathic powers, who creates a new religion and begins to search for followers. Lots of interesting philosophy, some interesting stuff on gender and racial issues without it feeling too abrupt or unnatural. The most notable part is that it's a really depressing story about humanity's failings, but the ending manages to be uplifting without being cheap."

Which story are you more intrigued by? In point of fact, they're the same story—Octavia E. Butler's Parable of the Sower, which is a very good book and I recommend it—but one recommendation is far stronger. Of course, the recommendation is framed differently than the synopsis would be, but the purpose is the same: to tell you what the story's about and why you should read more.

Vagueness does not intrigue. Vagueness leaves me wondering what the story's about, and then it leaves me wondering why the hell I should care.

The synopsis is not about what you want. It's about what your reader needs, and what your reader needs is information. Give it to them.
>> No. 106367
>>106265

... No it is not about me, not completely. However, the synopses isn't just for giving information to the readers. Hell, the fact that I'm telling them a dark order will rise is a HUGE spoiler for the story, something I really hate when it comes to synopses though sometimes its necessary.

A synopses isn't to tell people completely about what the book is about, it is also to get the readers interested in the story as well as give hints as to what the story will be like.

The vagueness isn't just because I want it, it fits well with the story itself. There will almost always be questions that the characters have, information that they search out... and these questions, this search for information and what the answers reveal are critical to the plot.

If I simply tell the readers everything, there won't be any curiosity, no curiousty, no need to read it.

My current synopses tells the reader two things. 1. A storm is threatening to do a lot of damage to Equestria. 2. A dark order is going to rise.

That is no way simply saying 'This book is a sci-fi adventure' or the like. It does inform the reader about two of the three main plot points in the story, but I manage to do so without giving much information away.

So what do my readers need? They have information as to what will happen, they have the setup to the story, they have curiosity about it and questions to be asked.

What else is needed?
>> No. 106371
>>106367
Anon who first reviewed your synopsis here.
When you answered my post, you failed to answer the other questions I had about the middle part of your synopsis. Yes, you say you want it vague, but even your vagueness must be clear. If you want your readers to have questions, you need to make absolutely sure they know the right question and they know that you meant them to be asking it.
Generally though, readers have three basic questions about your (read: any) story before you even get to questions of suspense:
1. Why should I care? >So what? I don't care about this, the author's wasting my time. I'm done with this story.

2. Do you really expect me to believe that? >Oh, yeah? I don't buy it. I'm done with this story.

3. What's going on? >I don't know if I'm stupid, or if the writer is bad, but I don't know what's going on and I'm done with this story.

You should be able to answer those with characters the reader will love or love to hate, believable motivations and actions for those characters, and clear writing.

Please re-read my review of your synopsis: you have a dictionary definition of a word, you have a run-on sentence that makes no objective sense, and then you reference the reader. "Thy" or "you" is irrelevant stylistic choice, I'll give you that, but you failed to answer the other concerns I raised.

>many ideas blatantly stolen from Orson Scott Card's book on creating characters.
>> No. 107307
Hullo! For your scrutiny and most sincere critique:

Question of Sacrifice

Treachery and lies are interwoven into the complex tapestry of politics that stretches from the noble spires of Canterlot to the deceitful halls of griffoney, and the whole political spectrum is a constant flashpoint. It only takes one, willing to make the ultimate sacrifice, to set the whole farce ablaze
>> No. 107379
>>106367

Okay sure, the run on sentence could be edited so it wasn't run on, but it tells you two of the three main elements of the story in a rather clear-cut but also curiosity inducing method

The dictionary definition was odd and perhaps not that gripping. However, it also highlighted one of the key elements in the story, change.

Plus, the synopses has answered all three of the questions you just presented.

1. Why should I care?
Because there is two bad things about to happen to Equestira, which you know about because you a fan of FiM.

2. Do you really expect me to believe that?
A Storm that threatens Equestira is a bit of a stretch, but considering that we do have hurricanes in real life its not that bad. The dark order thing is odd as well but who knows what happened in the past?

3. What's going on?
A storm is threatening to destroy or deal terrible damage to Equestira while a dark order also rises.

So, any other criticism?
>> No. 107380
Slender
[Dark]
Speak no evil, only breathe. Hear no evil, only listen. See no evil, only darkness... or so the tale goes.
Twilight Sparkle retires an old tome to the shelves one final time, having more than enough spooks for one night. Now with Spike away at Applebloom's, she can relax, because after all, a story is just a story... right?

Basically, it's about the Slendermane, just in case you're wondering. I've been told that there's a lot wrong with it, but I haven't been told what it is.
Thanks in advance.
>> No. 108245
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108245
Story title: One Pony's Terrorist
Setting: Conversion Bureau universe
WTF is going on: POV of a HLF (pro-human "terrorists") insurgent
[Adventure] [Human] [Dark]

It is a new era on Earth, an era humans such as Jack Beckett are wary of. Civilization is in a tough spot, and a new continent appears in the middle of the Pacific Ocean; its pony citizens bringing promises of utopic peace, freedom, and harmony. The catch? You must give up your own humanity and become a pony yourself. Many do, and see this as an opportunity to bring about a better Earth. Jack Beckett and the Human Liberation Front, however, see something entirely different.

Note from TTG:
Let's start with the synopsis. It really isn't a synopsis at all, just a sum-up of the usual TCB premise with a passing mention of your character's name. You can include some sort of a sum-up, but it shouldn't be too much by default like ”It's a new era on Earth, the era of ponies. It isn't just their continent appearing in the middle of the Pacific, but they also bring an offer of a better life, and all you got to give up is your thumbs.” Though it isn't necessary at all; that basic stuff can be included in the story itself. Your synopsis needs something about the main plot -- just a tidbit is enough. Like the story, I think the synopsis should be from Jack's POV. Ultimately, the synopsis doesn't have to be that witty.
>> No. 108279
Here I am again. Third time's the charm?

Tags: [Grimlight][Adventure]
Additional tags: Misunderstandings, Giving explanations, Wolves, Fighting, Dragon.

Armed and trained, and with experience as forest rangers, Finesse and his wolf Ray are prepared for the next part in their journey, the Everfree Forest. Before they go, they intended to just pass through Ponyville, where, according to Princess Celestia, her apprentice should give them some advice.

One short reunion later, their plan changes. Now, they need to convince Fluttershy, and her friends, that they did not betray her years ago.

Or worse, that they tried to kill her.
>> No. 108537
Hey all. First synopsis here XD

Title:Pinkie Pie's Phenomenal Ponytech Party

[Comedy] [Adventure] [Humans] [Crossover] [Sci-fi]

Synopsis: In a stunning reversal of several plot devices, ponies find themselves at humanity's interstellar back doorstep. Having learned of the ongoing problems humans face when it comes to friendship and harmony; one pony in particular takes it upon herself to throw an introductory party, with the help of some multiton machines the wayward Equestrians have found.
RIGHT NOW.
>> No. 108791
>>107307
If Griffoney is a place, it needs to be capitalized.
Mostly, you want to zoom in on your story. Even if you’re writing a sprawling fantasy/adventure/political intrigue, you need to name characters and set concrete stakes.
Here’s an example: Game of Thrones’ synopsis. I’ve got certain problems with it, but it does some things right.
>Long ago, in a time forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons out of balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom's protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens.
>Here an enigmatic band of warriors bear swords of no human metal; a tribe of fierce wildlings carry men off into madness; a cruel young dragon prince barters his sister to win back his throne; and a determined woman undertakes the most treacherous of journeys. Amid plots and counterplots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.
See, even amidst the tangled web of politics and danger, you zoom in on bits of the conflict: the warriors, the wildlings, the prince, etc. The Starks named as a family if nothing else, and they’re given a quick characterization. There’s also a fair bit about setting, but it’s not just throwaway info: the setting helps to drive the conflict, and thus the places mentioned are important.
And ASoIaF is a clusterfuck of politics and danger and intrigue and battle and love and death and terror and all that stuff; it’s very difficult to sum up in only two paragraphs. You’re not approaching Martin’s intricacy (I assume), so you can manage a better, more thorough explanation of your work than he can of his. Do so.
>> No. 108792
>>107379
Things to consider adding to your synopsis:
‣This storm—is it literal or metaphorical? I’d been thinking it was a metaphorical storm; if there’s an actual literal weather-related disaster, clarify that.
‣Who are your protagonists? Name them.
‣Who are your antagonists? Name them.
‣What is at stake? Define it. It’s better to be specific here. While vague premonitions of world-shaking doom are common in fantasy, they’re peculiarly unthreatening in practice. Take the following two threats: “The world shall tremble in fear!” and “I’m going to shoot your daughter in the face.” Which one is scarier, in practice? Even when the villain truly does threaten the world, that danger is often shown in miniature first, because the human mind more easily understands the microcosm. Does the villain make vague threats on the world? Sure. But first, he burns down the hero’s hometown, or she kills the hero’s parents, something to show us that it’s not just an idle threat.
>> No. 108793
>>107380
Two ellipses, which I don't like. A rhetorical question, which I like even less. "Having more" should be "having had more." You've also screwed up your parallelism in the opening.
>Speak/breathe
>Hear/listen
>See/darkness
That "verb, only noun," when the other two are "verb, only verb," is jarring in a way that feels like an error rather than an intentional break from the pattern.

So, on to content: why is Twilight worrying? She doesn't seem to scare easily—in Look Before You Sleep, she seems fine with ghost stories. "Retires an old tome to the shelves one final time" implies that she's read it before, and more than once. Also, she works in a library—"the shelves" aren't where you want to hide a book. What is it about this moment which makes Slendermane a threat, when he wasn't before? If she's in danger, wouldn't she want her friends nearby?

My idle thought is that Twilight's going to spend a couple pages freaking out, and then it turns out that it was a branch scraping against a window or something. The Slenderman Mythos runs off of subtlety, but you do have to show the readers that yes, this is a real threat.
>> No. 108794
>>108245
Second-person—any usage of "you" or similar—is inadvisable in a synopsis for a story which isn't itself written in second-person.

>Ocean; its
>Ocean, its

I don't mind the summary of TCB-verse, seeing as you're pretty quick about it. But this last line? "Jack Beckett and the Human Liberation Front, however, see something entirely different." Tell us what that "something different is, because that's where your story is. That's what we actually care about.

Look, you have enough here for me to read between the lines and make a pretty good guess as to your subject matter. Jack and his pals think Equestria is evil, and they resist the pony invasion—with violence, if necessary. From there it's an exploration of what it means to be a rebel, and what it means to be human.

So who the fuck cares. I've read that story. I've read versions of it which managed to pass through legitimate publishing houses, which means those versions are supposed to have baseline quality control. You're writing pony fanfic. It's fanfic, so I as a reader have no such assurance that it won't be illiterate drivel.

Your synopsis is that assurance. Why should I read your story? What makes your tale of morality in the face of revolution special? Why is your story something I want to read? Find it, flaunt it.
>> No. 108795
>>108279
Definitely closer. Just a couple things to point out:
•Your additional tags. Does your story have wolves, and fighting, and a dragon; or does it have wolves fighting a dragon? Reorder or reword those tags, for the sake of clarity.

•What is the purpose of Finesse's journey?

•The last bit is worded awkwardly. 

>Now, they need to convince Fluttershy, and her friends, that they did not betray her years ago. Or worse, that they tried to kill her.

What you mean is
>convince Fluttershy that they did not [blank]
where [blank] is
>[betray her] [try to kill her]

However, it can be read as
>convince Fluttershy that [blank]
where [blank] is
>[they did not betray her] or [they tried to kill her]

See, your current structure only applies "did not" to the betrayal. That's not good. And it's an awkward in general, what with the conjunction starting a sentence and a superfluous paragraph break. 

Definitely closer, but would still benefit from tweaking.
>> No. 108796
>>108537
Comedies can be harder to critique, seeing as they often break established rules, but here are my thoughts.

In the title, the "Ph" in the middle of all the hard "P"s sounds odd to me when read aloud.

That's a lot of tags. Sometimes stories have lots of tags, yes, but do think about trimming. In particular, "Adventure" seems out of place. Right now this sounds like a one-shot.

Also, clarify what you're crossing over with.

>harmony; one
>harmony, one

>RIGHT NOW.
All caps is frowned upon for emphasis. It's not as bad as boldface type, but in general, you should use italics. That's if you really feel you need to provide such emphasis, which is debatable in a synopsis. Also, you've misplaced this fragment. Currently, you seem to be saying that she found machines RIGHT NOW, when I assume what you meant is that she's going to throw a party RIGHT NOW. Rephrase for clarity.

Lastly, the fourth wall. At the very least, you're leaning on it in your opening line. Seeing as your story stars Pinkie, I suspect you'll be doing a lot of fourth wall breaking and lampshade hanging and whatnot.

I beg you, be careful. I've read too many stories which claim to be comedies, but use "Pinkie knows they're in a cartoon!" as the only joke. That's not funny. Show Pinkie rarely breaks the fourth wall outright, although she does lean heavily against it. And when she does so, it's in support of another joke, rather than being the joke itself. Please, please be careful. If you're writing a comedy, you must make it funny.
>> No. 108797
Queue cleared
>> No. 108826
I'm wondering if this draws your attention enough to want to read it, and if not, how can I improve that effect?

Moonlight

[Dark] [Semi-Sad]

Two questions had haunted Luna since she returned to Equestria: Who was Nightmare Moon, underneath the masked she showed the world? And what did she truly want?
>> No. 108833
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108833
>>108826
Questions. While questions are important to be brought up from reading a synopsis, the synopsis itself shouldn't be mostly questions, in my opinion. Luna asks herself these questions, but this doesn't tell us what the story is about. Does she go on a investigation to figure out the answers, or is this all about self contemplation while Celestia tries to cheer her up with cake? Your main issue here is that you don't state what the story is about enough to make me want to read it. It's a question. That's it.

First time chiming in here. Looks pretty neat and stuffz
>> No. 108931
>>108826
I concur with >>108833. Questions don't serve your synopsis.

Avoid questions, make statements. If you ask questions, readers can get sidetracked into their own little worlds of their own little answers. Keep them focused on your story, and what your answers are.
>> No. 108932
Also, seeing as the queue is now cleared, I’d like to put my own synopsis up for review.

For FiMfiction:

[Dark] [Tragedy] [Romance] [Crossover]
Nightmare Moon has risen a third time, intent on the destruction of the world that mocked her. Every adult pony has fallen into an endless sleep, and monsters from the stars ravage what's left of Equestria. There's one thing that might save them: the ANIMa, a bizarre machine which turns relationships into psychic weapons. Led by a still-waking Princess Celestia, Twilight and her friends must forge friendship into a weapon and defeat the terrors of the night once and for all. Based on Ben Lehman's Bliss Stage RPG.

Slight variation for EqD:

[Grimdark] [Shipping] [Sci-fi] [Crossover]
Additional Tags: Loss, Tragedy, Hope: Bliss Stage
Nightmare Moon has risen a third time, intent on the destruction of the world that mocked her. Every adult pony has fallen into an endless sleep, and monsters from the stars ravage what's left of Equestria. There's one thing that might save them: the ANIMa, a bizarre machine which turns relationships into psychic weapons. Led by a still-waking Princess Celestia, Twilight and her friends must forge friendship into a weapon and defeat the terrors of the night once and for all.
>> No. 108933
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108933
>>108932
I'm not very good at synopsis reviewing, but I can give it a shot.

>Nightmare Moon has risen a third time,
Third time? Do you mean she had risen before being sent to the moon and then coming back a thousand years later? You may want to clarify, because people may be confused about this point.

>mocked her
More like feared her. I don't think there was much mocking going on.

>adult pony
Could be worded better. Not sure how

>the ANIMa, a bizarre machine which turns relationships into psychic weapons.
I'd suggest removing the name of the machine. it adds more mystery to it. When the ANIMa is introduced in your story it will bring up a question as to what it is. Readers will pay more attention to that instead of just putting the definition you gave in the synopsis in their head.

>still-waking
Odd wording. 'impervious' may work better. Maybe not. Play with this, perhaps.

>Twilight and her friends
Is Twilight a main protagonist? If all of the characters are equal in this story, you can say 'the Elements of Harmony'

Overall, this sounds... Odd. So, they're making tangible friendship and beating up monsters with it. Seems legit.
>> No. 108950
This fic is planning on being something different. At first, it will be somewhat similar to "The White Box" in style, and then evolve into something else. It's also in third person present tense.

Celestia awakens for the very first time. White sandstone stretches in every direction as far as the eye can see, and a murky gray sky hangs over it.

From this, she creates everything.


>ponychan won't let me post the pic, so here's a link to it: http://static.fimfiction.net/images/story_images/33610.jpg?1340236018
>> No. 108982
>>108933
Thanks for the review, Professor. My thoughts:
>third time
First time was a thousand years ago, second time was the series premiere, third time was a few months before the start of the story. One misinterpretation that earlier versions could have led to was that this story replaces the season one opener, and I wanted to clarify that it’s after all that. The wording still isn't quite right, though. I'll poke at it some more.

>mocked her
This is partly a function of my characterization of Nightmare Moon, although I hope it doesn't stray too far from canon. In canon, her original motive was to make ponies appreciate her night, and she's got an odd sort of royal self-righteousness that stays even when she's back to Luna. She expects recognition and admiration. So it's not quite "a world that mocked her" so much as "a world that failed to fully appreciate her," but it's not such a great leap from one to the other, and the second's not as rhetorically effective. Will reexamine this, though.

>adult pony
Yeah, this definitely feels awkward. I've been trying to find a better replacement, but haven't yet succeeded.

>the ANIMa
I'm not sure I agree with this. It doesn't seem to me that there's much point in leaving out the name—it gets used in literally the first sentence of chapter one. And the function of the machine—that friendship is, literally, a giant robot—makes for a large part of the story's potential appeal.

>still-waking
I'll definitely play with it, though I do kinda like this line.

>Twilight and her friends
This actually gets to one of my personal peeves. Referring to the gang as “the Elements of Harmony” is almost entirely a construction of fanon. In the season one opener, Twilight says that “the spirits of The Elements of Harmony are right here” and Applejack says “I reckon we really do represent the Elements of Friendship" (emphases mine), but they never directly equate themselves to the Elements; in season two, they talk only of “wielding” or “using” the Elements, and treat the necklaces/tiara as essential to the Friendship Beam. In general, the group doesn't pay much attention to the Elements unless they're directly relevant to the situation at hand. While fanon might have Rarity say, "As the Element of Generosity, I pledge to so-and-so," canon doesn't have such dependency.

>this sounds... Odd.
Yes. Yes it does. And yes it is. If you know Neon Genesis Evangelion—well, it’s not Eva, but it addresses many of the same themes and ideas. War, with soldiers who are unprepared for what they're doing, but there's no one else who can do it. Love, and how it survives, or doesn't, amidst crisis. Hope for a better future, and the sacrifices made in order to keep that hope alive. It's why the FiMfiction version is tagged [Tragedy], but the EqD version isn't tagged [Sad]: because the story, while sad, is sad in a way that (hopefully) resembles classical tragedy, wherein noble characters are destroyed by their own flaws. Of course, the thing is that pony is inherently redemptive, and it's in the nature of pony to actively resist [Grimdark]. I think there's a lot of potential in that confluence.

Also, the mane six fight aliens by making giant robots out of weaponized friendship. So that's fun. Weird, but fun.
>> No. 108984
>>108950
Haven't read The White Box yet, but here are my thoughts.

Your synopsis is rather short, and I can't tell much about your story from what you have so far. What I infer about your story, however, disinclines me from reading it

It looks to be a creation myth. That's nice, and some people like to read that sort of thing, but I'm not one of them. See, a creation myth is easily Jossed, and if the only appeal is "What does this author's headcanon look like?" then there's not much draw for me. If your story has a further appeal, then plug that in your synopsis. Detail your story beyond "At the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with Celestia, and the Word was Celestia." That's what gives your story its staying power.
>> No. 108985
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108985
>>108982
(It's like... late for me, so not going to go over everything. In the morning I may... Idunno)
>Referring to the gang as “the Elements of Harmony” is almost entirely a construction of fanon.

Maybe so, but it was just a suggestion. It's a way to avoid implications that Twilight is more focused on than other characters.

>Also, the mane six fight aliens by making giant robots out of weaponized friendship.
>Pic
I think we need to talk about your concept. It's crazy. This doesn't mean it won't work, but you'll need some damn good explanation for everything.
>> No. 108997
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108997
>>108984
I don't do headcanon.

The fic is just a giant story, one that starts off as a creationism story. There's a giant hole in celestia's past, and where she comes from. I'm just trying to create an epic that covers everything important up until, well, the spot I plan to end my fic.

I was trying to paint the setting with the first few lines, and then the last line was to add the feeling that the story would span massive amounts of time. Generally speaking it actually works in my favor to have a short and open ended synopsis since I have a decent level of fame on fimfiction. If my synopsis is fairly broad, people will have a vague idea of what the story is about getting into it, but they'll click on it because of the author/rating/view count. That sounds kind of pompous, but it's true, and it works.

That being said, I tried to expand the setting part of the synopsis.

On a desolate plane, on a barren world, Celestia awakes for the first time. Her eyes open to a white sea of cracked sandstone that spans the horizon in every direction, and a murky gray sky that blankets it. There is only her, and every last bit of her is as white as the sandstone around her.

From this, she creates everything.


That's the limit of fimfiction's synopsis before getting a 'click for more' button.

The thing is, the sentences in the first part are currently taken word for word from my opening paragraph. I'm wondering if this is a mistake, or if I shouldn't worry about it.
>> No. 108998
>>108997
Err, a couple things I forgot to add. The picture in the above post is the cover art that wouldn't upload before, and:
>I'm just trying to create an epic that covers everything important up until, well, the spot I plan to end my fic.

I wanted to clarify on this that I'm not covering it for the sake of covering it. I'm covering it to tell a story. The core of all my writing is character driven, not world driven.
>> No. 109026
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109026
I need a little help on my synopsis. My problem is the way I'm doing the story. The story, while having multiple chapters, is of an episodic format, so while the first two chapters are connected, the rest are just random adventures of the mane six and my OC, (Pictured here. OC is mine. Art is not.) So how do i make a synopsis of that.

Title: Scribes are Weird

Synopsis:Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, though he has doubts about his own skills and is ridiculed for his odd quirks. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville for an important assignment, Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. But will he find the there are ponies that can like him for him?

Also here's a synopsis for a specific chapter.

Title: Scribes are Weird: A Pinkie Pie Reunion

Synopsis: Pinkie Pie with straight hair? Well, that can't be good. Pinkie gets depressed when she has to visit her family at the rock farm. While everypony else is busy, Ghost offers to go along. Turns out Pinkie's sisters aren't as fond of her as she made them out to be. Can Ghost help her out while dealing with someone he'd thought he'd never meet again?

Little help is all I ask.
>> No. 109030
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109030
>>109026
Hm, I'm not tuned much with 'episodic' fics (Or known as 'Slice of Life' fics) but I can give this a shot.

Perhaps you can state that Ghostwriter is there to learn something or do something that is very broad. Like how Twilight is in Ponyville to learn about 'Friendship'. Friendship is a broad topic, and many things can happen that pertain to friendship.


>Synopsis:Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, though he has doubts about his own skills and is ridiculed for his odd quirks. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville for an important assignment, Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. But will he find the there are ponies that can like him for him?

>Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe
Except we always see Celestia writing her own letters. Spike is a scribe, and is always seen writing letters to Celestia, but Celestia just writes her own letters. I know there's more to being a princess than just writing letters, but you need to justify the use of a scribe to begin with.

>When Celestia sends him to Ponyville for an important assignment,
This might be the thing you could elaborate on to have that broad plot point. Again, Twilight's assignment is to learn about friendship.

>Ghost
Full name for synopsis', especially since the name is one word. You call him Ghostwriter, not Ghost Writer.

>Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. But
Flows better with a comma instead of a period

>But will he find the there are ponies that can like him for him?
Anyone CAN. A proper substitute is 'will'. Also, liking him for him? How about just liking him in general? Seems like this kid is picked on, not used or anything like people are pretending to like him. You also got a typo in there. 'find the there'. I think you mean 'find that there'.
>> No. 109113
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109113
>>109030
Thanks for the input.

>Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe
>Except we always see Celestia writing her own letters. Spike is a scribe, and is always seen writing letters to Celestia, but Celestia just writes her own letters. I know there's more to being a princess than just writing letters, but you need to justify the use of a scribe to begin with.

Just to make sure, I went and looked up what a scribe is. The actual job of a scribe is "a person who writes books or documents by hand as a profession and helps the city keep track of its records". Ghost (I wanted that to be his nickname) would be used by Celestia to take down events of importance, work on important treaties, take minutes at certain meetings, and most importantly act as a historian and transcribe any event Celestia deems worthy to have passed into history.

Also, yes, Ghost is picked on, but mostly behind his back due to his status as Celestia's scribe. See, I always saw Canterlot as one of those places where status rules. Even in the show, it was clear that ponies where acting certain ways. (Everyone was ready to laugh Rarity away, until Fancy Pants(PFF) said something.) Ghost explains it later calling it "A city of fakers" Ghost grew up in Canterlot and is now afraid to be himself, so that's why I said him for him

Now taking all the other things you said into account the synopsis should look like this:

Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, though he has doubts about his own skills and is ridiculed for his odd quirks. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville to transcribe the events involving the Elements of Harmony, Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. While he's there, can he find that ponies can like him for him?

How's that?
>> No. 109148
Hey, why not...

Sunshine and Fire.
[Grimdark][Adventure]
Twilight Sparkle, Celestia and Luna are transported into a strange alternate Equestria, the Land of Always Summer, where the day lasts forever and a terrible queen rules with an iron hoof.

I formulated it according to the character limit of fanfiction.net's summaries. "The Land of Always Summer" may seem like a reference to a certain series of books, but I used it mostly because I really like the way the phrase sounds.
>> No. 109229
OK, this is going to be an important fic for me, so I'd like a synopsis review:

Title: Bronygeddon

[Adventure][Human]

Synopsis: All around the world, bronies are gaining some of the powers of the ponies they love. But those who aren't bronies are becoming awfully jealous. The only option is escape into Equestria itself.
>> No. 109230
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109230
>>109113
>Picked on behind his back
Then how does this affect Ghost. I think it would be better if there was some sort of confrontation, which could be the point where Celestia decides to send him off.

Your synopsis sounds better, but I feel it could use a little bit more. Like how maybe the Mane 6 will react to him or something. I just feel it doesn't quite give a hint of the actual content.

(Sorry for late reply, for some reason I seemed to have missed this)

>>109148
Twilight Sparkle, Celestia and Luna are transported into a strange alternate Equestria, the Land of Always Summer, where the day lasts forever and a terrible queen rules with an iron hoof.

>Twilight Sparkle, Celestia and Luna are transported
>Human is transported to Equestria
The same thing has been used. Noun is verb to noun where description of noun.

Wait a second.
>Transported to a strange land
>terrible queen rules
So, this is Alice in Wonderland.

Not much I can say for this, pretty much because most of this is generic. Transportation to different land where must fight stuff and go home. If I had to suggest anything, other than a different story, it would be to maybe put a few words as to how they got transported (Something original, please) and what they plan to do about it. The synopsis implies they're just stuck there and they don't give any shits.

>>109229
I can't review this synopsis because this story has been done a million times. ... I guess I can help. First off, capitalize Bronies, as it is a proper noun.

>awfully jealous.
Jealous? Why jealous? Most of the time brony haters just don't like us because we post pony porn everywhere. I like our fandom, but honestly there's nothing to be 'jealous' about. These powers they're getting probably wouldn't make them jealous, it'd probably just make them see the situation as damn ridiculous. Imagine if Homestuck fans got those powers
>Implying they're anything special dohohoho I'd probably be more like 'wtf?' than anything. Bronies can now use purple magic levitation given to them from TWILIGHT SPARKLE.

And another thing: They're getting powers? How? It's just like 'They're magic now! Everybody dance!' no explanation or anything. It's a synopsis, but justification is still important. If they're getting all of these powers, why do they want to leave? Just smash the Brony haters with giant rocks that you pick up WITH YOUR MAGIC.Only option is to go to Equestria? Please. They want to go try to seduce Twilight Sparkle
I know I would, honestly. As long as I have a way back and I don't turn into a pony.

Furthermore:
Armageddon: The last battle between good and evil before the Day of Judgment.
Sounds like these Bronies are just moving their stuff over to Equestria.

And that's how Sue, C's it.
>> No. 109234
>>109230
As far as being done, I haven't done it, and I want to try my own spin. I want to get it written just to have a log fic under my belt.

Now, the reason they're getting powers is because the ponies themselves are giving them, taking pity on a magic-less world. But that's not revealed to the humans until the first turning point. So should it go in the synopsis?

As for why others are jealous, I think that they would be just because they would say, "Why can they do something I can't just because they like a cartoon show?!"
>> No. 109236
File 134114996498.jpg - (111.44KB , 400x400 , 21150044.jpg )
109236
>>109234
It shouldn't be in the synopsis if you don't intend for the reader to know about it until the humans do. If you're switching between perspectives of worlds then yes, but if we're only following the humans.

Jealousy is not a real reason to leave Earth. This is my biggest problem
>> No. 109240
Ah, ok. Then that's something that should go in, because the envy leads to violent attacks on bronies and restrictive laws passed against them.
>> No. 109242
>>109230
>Not much I can say for this, pretty much because most of this is generic. Transportation to different land where must fight stuff and go home. If I had to suggest anything, other than a different story, it would be to maybe put a few words as to how they got transported (Something original, please) and what they plan to do about it. The synopsis implies they're just stuck there and they don't give any shits.

I'm quite fine with the story I have, actually.

Anyway: 1) I avoided going into the specifics of what happens why because that would spoil the first chapter, 2) like I said, I formulated this by ff.net's story summaries; that means it's about at the maximum character limit, 3) this is a summary of the premise, not the entire story.

But thanks.
>> No. 109243
File 134115534114.gif - (270.00KB , 300x160 , 134101979248.gif )
109243
>>109230
>Picked on behind his back
>Then how does this affect Ghost. I think it would be better if there was some sort of confrontation, which could be the point where Celestia decides to send him off.

Hmm... I think i should use different wording. what I'm actually going for is that in Canterlot, ponies put up a front when talking to him because of his position but they don't really respect him. Also I really want Celestia to send him there with an actual job. just based on her personality, people will know there's more to it.

>Your synopsis sounds better, but I feel it could use a little bit more. Like how maybe the Mane 6 will react to him or something. I just feel it doesn't quite give a hint of the actual content.

Again rather difficult to hint at content. The first two chapters are just introducing him to Ponyville. Thats simple enough. But afterwards, well, I have a chapter where Ghost and a depressed Pinkie go to her family's rock farm, another where Ghost blows up the library and Twilight cast a sleep spell on him but then can't wake him up, another where Ghost and Rarity accidentally travel back in time and are revered as gods, and another where Ghost, Twilight, R.d. and A.J. search for the lost treasure of White Mane, the pony pirate. How do i hint at all this?

Still I'll give it another shot.

Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, though he has doubts about his own skills. Ponies may respect his position, but because of Ghostwriters odd quirks, no pony respects the pony behind it and he's sick of it. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville to transcribe the events involving the Elements of Harmony, Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. While he's there, can he find that ponies can like him for him all while dealing with rock farms, explosions, sleep spells, pony pirates, and time travel?

Once again thank you for the input.
>> No. 109244
>>108796

Thank you very much for this!

I actually don't break the fourth wall at all in my fic, and try and make other actual jokes, yes. But it sounds like good advice if I ever DO lean/break on that fourth wall.
>> No. 109245
>>108796

I forgot to ask, is this leaning on the fourth wall bad, in the synopsis?
>> No. 109251
>>108795
>Additional tags...
I set the tags like that on purpose, as the story have both.
>the last bit.
I get what you say, but I’m not sure about a correct fix. Would writing like that: “[...]that they did not betray her years ago, or worse, tried to kill her.” be correct? Also, does the ascending severity of the charges matter?
>> No. 109257
>>109240
Well, I think we have your synopsis down, but I don't just do synopsis', hence why I havea review thread (even though I haven't done anything in it due to personal problems) again, why don't the Bronies just beat the tar out of these attackers? They have pony powers for God's sake. Bronies are the superior race and realistically can control the world. Haven't you seen Mega Mind? Mega Mind is ONE guy but because he has powers (subjective) he rules the city. If you haven't see Mega Mind I suggest you pick it up because it is awesome.

>>109242
>Asks for help
>Gives help
>takes nothing into account

As far as I'm concerned I wouldn't read this because of how generic it is. I'm not familiar with FanFiction's formatting, but I'm pretty sure somewhere you can put an actual synopsis. If readers are only getting a glimpse of your story by this summary no one is going to pick it up (or atleast anyone who plans on not just being a yes man) Your story sounds boring. There is no way around this. I'm not trying to come off as a jackass, I'm trying to give it to you straight here. Your story may be beautifully written, but no one is ever going to know. My latest story named 'Techno Twilight' is a pretty big piece of crap. I'm pretty sure Nick wanted to start drinking after it, but people would read mine over yours because it has aninteresting synopsis and the concept is new and original.

>>109243
I'll get to this when I'm on a computer. iPod typing is tedious.
>> No. 109259
>>109257
I have been taking everything you said into account.
>> No. 109262
>>109259
I know, I was talking to Mr. Land of the Summer when I said he wasn't taking my advice into account. Again, I'll get back to you on yours when I'm at my computer.
>> No. 109263
>>109257
Thanks! I might take you up on your offer. I've just got one more round of editing to do, and fortunately I have a 2 hour plane ride tomorrow to do it during.
>> No. 109267
>>109262
Kay just wanted to make sure I hadn't offended you or seem ungrateful for the advice
>> No. 109275
File 134117359594.png - (152.30KB , 510x314 , Marriageisbeautiful.png )
109275
>>109243
>The first two chapters are just introducing him to Ponyville.
Is this it? I mean, with Twilight Celestia was like 'GO MAKE SOME FRIENDS, BUUUDDDYYY' but there was another plot point, which was Nightmare Moon, making it that much more interesting. Just make sure to add a pretty fronted conflict going on.

>How do I hint at all this?
Not sure. I'd go to FimFiction and read some of the 'Slice of Life''s story synopses. That may give you a good idea. Again, sorry about not knowing much about Episodic stuff.

Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, though he has doubts about his own skills. Ponies may respect his position, but because of Ghostwriters odd quirks, no pony respects the pony behind it and he's sick of it. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville to transcribe the events involving the Elements of Harmony, Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. While he's there, can he find that ponies can like him for him all while dealing with rock farms, explosions, sleep spells, pony pirates, and time travel?

>Ponies may respect his position, but because of Ghostwriters odd quirks, no pony respects the pony behind it and he's sick of it
Wordy. 'Ponies respect his position but not him personally.'

>While he's there, can he find that ponies can like him for him all while dealing with rock farms, explosions, sleep spells, pony pirates, and time travel?
No. Questions should not be in synopsis'. Technically there's nothing wrong with it, but rhetorical questions are just overdone. 'CAN OUR HERO DEFEAT DA GANON?'

'But when Ghost arrives, he has no idea what shenanigans the Elements of Harmony are always up to' or something like that would be better.

>>109263
It sounds interesting. If my queue was open I'd totally have you come to my review thread when you were done with the story. But alas.
>> No. 109281
File 134117499841.jpg - (78.14KB , 640x450 , 134094360303.jpg )
109281
>>109275
>Is this it? I mean, with Twilight Celestia was like 'GO MAKE SOME FRIENDS, BUUUDDDYYY' but there was another plot point, which was Nightmare Moon, making it that much more interesting. Just make sure to add a pretty fronted conflict going on.

Hmmm... I hadn't put much thought into that, Mostly I was focusing on Ghost own emotional conflict. He wants to make friends with the mane six, but he's unsure if they'll really like him.


>'Ponies respect his position but not him personally.'


>'But when Ghost arrives, he has no idea what shenanigans the Elements of Harmony are always up to' or something like that would be better.

Can I use these? They sound much better. Though, I think I'd change shenanigans to exploits.
>> No. 109283
>>109281
Thing is, Twilight was like 'LOLNOPE, NO FRIENDS' but when Nightmare Moon came, she was forced by the plot point to actually make friends. Sometimes a good plot point is what is needed to kick the character in the reer and say 'HEY, BE A BETTER PERSON', because every protagonist has a major flaw.

Yes, use those, that was the intention!
>> No. 109286
>>109283
Hmm... I'll defiantly have to come up with something.

Also here's the complete synopsis with all edits

Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, though he has doubts about his own skills. Ponies may respect his position but not him personally and he's sick of it. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville to transcribe the events involving the Elements of Harmony, Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. But when Ghost arrives, he has no idea what exploits the Elements of Harmony are always up to.
>> No. 109330
>>109286
Something just seems off, but I can't quite place it. Overall, this is good and ready to go. I think the reason why I feel it's off is because I try my hardest to find things wrong with things I review. That may sound crude, but sometimes it's necessary.
>> No. 109331
>>109330
I can understand that. So I guess my final question is would be is it good enough to snag readers now?
>> No. 109365
>>109245
Leaning on the fourth wall is fine as long as you lean on the fourth wall in the story. Otherwise, it sets up an expectation which won't be met.

One of the hard things about leaning on the fourth wall in fiction is that it's immersion-breaking; it reminds readers that all they're really doing is looking at squiggles on a screen. The fourth wall gags in the show are all visual gags, which don't translate well to fiction for the obvious reason that you can't see them. I usually shy away from meta-comedy in writing, so I'm not the best person to ask, but I would advise subtlety above all.
>> No. 109367
>>109331

>Ponies may respect his position but not him personally and he's sick of it.
This sentence is a little wonky. At the very least, you need a couple commas.

This version reads as a little shallow to me, but that depends on what you're trying to summarize. Is this for the first story, or for the series as a whole? If it's a description for the series as a whole, then its shallowness is acceptable. If this is the synopsis for the first story, you can afford to be a bit more thorough.

Also, be aware that you're tapdancing in a minefield. OC meets the Mane Six and has adventures? That is prime self-insert/Mary Sue territory right there, and readers will be understandably wary.

People occasionally throw (unjustified) accusations of "Mary Sue!" at the Six, especially Twilight. She's powerful, charismatic, friends with royalty, wielder of ancient power, et cetera. She's not a Sue for many reasons, among them her depth of characterization, her flaws both obvious and not-so-obvious, and the fact that she's not the only main character. Other characters get the spotlight.

And, most worryingly, you've given your character the same name you've chosen for your screen name, which is one of the biggest warning signs for a self-insert. I would really, really, really recommend that you change one or the other.
>> No. 109368
>>108997
Using your opening lines can work—many books have a short excerpt on the inside flap or before the title page, though the excerpt is usually slightly edited from its appearance in the story. However, there's usually a better way to describe your story. You say that you're going to focus on plot over headcanon, but your current synopsis doesn't support that. As you say, you've worked to emphasize setting. That in turn takes time away from other aspects of your story you could focus on here.

Yes, as a popular author you'll get views irrespective of what you write. I still think you should work to make your description as strong as possible. At the very least, it's something that can attract new eyeballs, rather than appealing solely to your current fans.
>> No. 109369
>>108985
Oh, I know. I've had reviews and comments from Vimbert, Vanner, Kim, Minty, Kurbz, Varanus, and a couple others I'm forgetting right now. It's a weird concept and there's a lot of work to be done, but I've got the stubbornness if nothing else. Thanks again for your feedback, Professor.
>> No. 109370
Well, that's been a surprising amount of activity for this thread in not-all-that-much time. If anyone feels that they've been overlooked, please speak up.
>> No. 109373
>>109367
Yes this is for a series of stories.

Also I am fully aware of the mine field (Though i tend to describe it as walking across a volcano's mouth with a tightrope made of dental floss)

As for the name, well, I came up with the name before I used it as my screen name, i just figured a scribe should have a name that relates to writing. But now I'm rather attached to both of them, Gah!

So with fixes, the synopsis should look like this:

Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, though he has doubts about his own skills. Ponies may respect his position, but not him personally and he's sick of it. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville to transcribe the events involving the Elements of Harmony, Ghost sees it as a chance for a fresh start. But when Ghost arrives, he has no idea what exploits the Elements of Harmony are always up to.

That sentence was supposed to have a comma. I just forgot it.

Thanks for the input.
>> No. 109374
>>109370
Guess it's my cue to bump:O
>>109251
>> No. 109377
>>109374
Personally, I would just go with the tried to kill her thing. If you establish earlier that they were friends, then the betrayal can be implied. Because I'm not sure of any instance where a friend tried to kill another and it was not called a betrayal.
>> No. 109560
>>109374
I think >>109377's suggestion works fairly well—the synopsis should create tension because of its content rather than because of its formatting. The current version uses that paragraph break and fragment to create tension, which falls flat for me.
>> No. 109813
>>109377
>>109560
I've played with it a little and that's what I ended up with:

Armed and trained, and with experience as forest rangers, Finesse and his wolf Ray are prepared for the next part in their journey, the Everfree Forest. Before they go, they intended to just pass through Ponyville, where, according to Princess Celestia, her apprentice should give them some advice, but after meeting an old friend that is not so happy to see them, their plan changes. Now, they need to convince Fluttershy, and her friends, that they did not attempt to kill her years ago.
>> No. 109817
>>109813
hmmm... it seems good except this part: >Before they go, they intended to just pass through Ponyville, where, according to Princess Celestia, her apprentice should give them some advice, but after meeting an old friend that is not so happy to see them, their plan changes.

The wording just seems... weird. Try something like: With a suggestion from Princess Celestia, that her apprentice can give them advice on the Everfree Forest, they visit Ponyville. However, while there, they...

Or just change it to: While they had intended...

I'm not to good at this either so take what you will.
>> No. 110745
I'm probably going to tinker with it a little, but it's a lot better already, thanks for all the help!
>> No. 110753
I hope this is still in service for a bit. I've been struggling with a synopsis for my recent write-off fic. I'm trying to go with something simple and withholding, that compliments a cover art pic I have in mind.

... I don't have the cover art, so I'll have to explain that too.

Title: No Foals
Tags: [Shipping]/[Romance] (possible, but debating on adding: [Sad])
Cover Art: A framed picture of Rainbow Dash and Applejack in front of a tree, smiling at the camera. The picture frame and glass are cracked down the middle, and it is taped back together.
Synopsis: Some things you'll do for money, and some you'll do for fun, but the things you do for love are gonna come back to you one by one.

Pretty bad, right? Any advice would be helpful, since it's kind of my first time aiming for something character-driven.
>> No. 110755
>>110753
This isn't very helpful, but I actually like that synopsis quite a bit. Maybe it's because it rhymes, and I like rhymes...
>> No. 110759
>>110753

I'm not feeling the verse. Check it out:

Some things you do for money.
Some things you do for fun.
The things you do for love
Are gonna come back one by one.

See? That's all steady and rhythmic. I tried to read your synopsis that way and couldn't figure it out. Work on that or just dump the idea of being rhythmic.
>> No. 110813
>>110759
>>110755

The rhyme is actually there because it's a case of "someone else found the best words first." The title of the fic is based off a song called "No Children" by The Mountain Goats. Said group wrote another song that includes a line used for the synopsis. It's not that I'm trying to directly reference it, but the words just felt... "right" to me. I'll keep thinking on other possibilities though.
>> No. 111004
File 134221121386.png - (189.08KB , 500x282 , 134211071528.png )
111004
So I've been here before and it really helped. But after a review for the story itself, Golden Vision said that the synopsis didn't really fit. So I have modified it and am posting it here for critiquing.

Ghostwriter is Celestia's personal scribe, a humble position he loves, but has gripes about. Ponies may respect his position, but not him personally and he's sick of it. When Celestia sends him to Ponyville to interview the Elements of Harmony’s wielders, Ghost just hopes it’s better than that ‘City of Fakers’. But between explosions, pirates, and rock farms, Ghost will find himself on more oddball adventures than he can count.
>> No. 112034
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112034
So I dropped off a synopsis here before, but I've found that it didn't really capture the focus of the story (it focused too much on what made the story seem like simple headcanon plugging) and have replaced it with something to try and better capture the dramatic and epic scope of what I'm writing.

Celestia awakens to see an empty world, white sandstone stretching the horizon. She wanders the world as she builds it from her imagination, filling it with life. Time passes, and the world that she created begins to seem like little more than a lucid dream, conjured from dust.
>> No. 112036
>>112034
Minor rewording to make it a bit less awkward sounding:

Celestia awakens to see an empty world, white sandstone stretching the horizon. She wanders the world as she builds it from her imagination, filling it with life, but as time passes, the world that she created begins to seem like little more than a lucid dream, conjured from the dust.
>> No. 112635
File 134294386185.jpg - (92.11KB , 1024x576 , words_hard.jpg )
112635
I'm trying to improve on the original synopsis for the story I've got up on TTG (>>108342). I've taken a second pass at it below and I was hoping the ponies in the room could offer some feedback. One challenge in my mind is that I'm trying to describe the setup for the longer story arch, but I don't want to have to be so specific as to totally spoil the first few chapters (which would similarly setup for the main content of the full story).

Without further ado:

For centuries Equestria has been united under Celestia's rule, and she has led the nation into a golden age of peace and prosperity. However, Luna's return marks the beginning of a new era as the princess is restored to the throne, and the unity of the nation is threatened when Luna challenges Celestia's unilateral reign. The conflict between the two regal sisters escalates into a struggle that divides all of Equestria and forces every pony to choose sides. Twilight and her friends are no exception, and this time, the magic of friendship may not be enough to keep them together.
>> No. 112649
File 134296857596.jpg - (24.40KB , 464x261 , 134149900624.jpg )
112649
You know what? I'll give this a shot. Fair warning I'm not too good at this but I'll try and help.

>>112036
Oh, hey SLP. I'm probably one of the last ponies. you'd want help from, but what the hay.

Lets see... Well it all sounds good except for one part

>She wanders the world as she builds it from her imagination, filling it with life, but as time passes, the world that she created begins to seem like little more than a lucid dream, conjured from the dust.

It might just be me but it seems awkwardly phrased.
Why not try 'She wanders a world built from her imagination, filling it with life, yet as time passes the world she created begins to seem more like a lucid dream, conjured from the dust.

Hope this helps. (And if not i hope to not get hit with internet rocks.)

>>112635
Now for you.

Hmm... my only issue is that last line.

>and this time, the magic of friendship may not be enough to keep them together.
>may not be enough to keep them together.

It's that 'may' part. Pretty much, in my head I'm thinking, there's no may about it. They're going to get separated by the conflict (and if not well...Kudos to you for playing with my head... don't consider that an achievement though, it's not that hard, I'm kinnda dumb like that.) Anyway, all I'm saying is that, if you want it to be an actual up in the air thing, may would not be the best thing to go with.

There you go you two, I gave it a shot. take what you will. Bye.
>> No. 112657
Okay, I'm about ready to resubmit to EqD. Could someone please tell me how this sounds?

"Equestria is a land of peace. Violent crime is almost nonexistent. Ponyville in particular hasn't had a single case of equicide in all its years of existence. But nothing lasts forever.

A body is discovered in the Everfree Forest. Shortly thereafter, an enigmatic stallion arrives at the local library, dispatched by Celestia herself. Faced with an obstinate police force, Twilight and this strange new pony must put the pieces together and catch a killer. But not everything is as it seems..."

I'm worried the first bit may be a little too "Celestia's Sun/Luna's Moon." Too cliche, but I'm not sure. What say you, Oh great reviewers of /fic/?
>> No. 112659
>>112657

I know it takes a lot to make me want to read a fic, even when they're on EqD. But that synopsis would have definitely made me want to check out the comments and at least the first chapter. It does a great job of grabbing my attention AND makes me want to know more- one doesn't always involve the other!

But that's just me. You may want to get a few more opinions before sending anything off.
>> No. 112682
>>112657
"But not everything is as it seems..."
Is terribly cliche, but otherwise it looks good.
>> No. 112737
>>112649
>there's no may about it

I think you're spot on with that comment. The final line originally replaced a rhetorical question (which no one likes, myself included, for every reason), so that's what came out; the less definitive word maintains that open-endedness.

Do you think just replacing it with "won't" works? "Twilight and her friends are no exception, and this time, the magic of friendship won't not be enough to keep them together."

It seems a bit less 'cliffhanger' written that way, so less likely to leave the reader wanting to read more (or, well, any of it), but perhaps that's hoping for a bit too much from the synopsis anyway (as you say, the rest makes it pretty clear that there's no maybe about it).
>> No. 112746
File 134302080657.png - (150.39KB , 1023x1070 , 134300081997.png )
112746
>>112737
Maybe something like 'Twilight and her friends are no exception, and while the magic of friendship is powerful, this is not something it can overcome.' If that helps.
>> No. 114686
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114686
Okay so, I've been struggling with the synopsis for my story for a while now. here is the three versions I've come up with:

1. Trying to forget her past, Trixie stumbles across Ponyville, where she will run into some old adversaries.

2. Trying to escape her past, Trixie has been on the move for two years. When she stumbles across Ponyville, she will have to explain herself to old adversaries.

3. Homeless and struggling to survive, Trixie returns to Ponyville two years after losing everything to the Ursa.

Any thoughts on which one I should use, or how to improve them?
>> No. 114757
File 134411897004.png - (1.82MB , 1500x888 , 134239196045.png )
114757
>>114686
personally I'd go with the third or something like "She lost everything in Ponyville. Now after two years of struggling to survive she finds herself back there, just looking for a new start."
>> No. 114759
>>114686
What's the outline of the plot? None of those really pique my interest and feel too short, not to mention half of it is just rehashing stuff the reader will already know.
>> No. 114765
File 134412200871.jpg - (51.58KB , 720x720 , nostalgic pinkamena.jpg )
114765
>>114759
Well Trixie was abandoned as a newfoal and forced to grow up on the street, where she became a thief, somewhat similar to Aladdin, from the Disney movie, but the fine details of that past are merely glimpsed at. She is taken in by a kind old unicorn, who happens to be a performer. He teaches her the tricks of the trade and acts like a (grand)father to her. When the Ursa attacked and destroyed her wagon, she left everything she owned in Ponyville, and was forced onto the streets once again. she is once again forced to steal to survive, but she hates it, and is desperately trying to escape that life. When she reaches Ponyville, she runs into the girls, and explains that she was never really mean, it was all just an act. after befriending the girls, she manages to get her cape and hat back, and continues on to a big performance in Baltimare, where she visits the grave of the Unicorn who raised her.

That's the whole story in a nutshell, although the whole thing doesn't exactly happen quite in that order. I used a lot of flashbacks. The story is called Showmare. It's gone around the board a bit already, if you feel like finding it.
>> No. 114793
File 134413089080.jpg - (1.13MB , 1600x1131 , trixie___i_won__t_lie_anymore____by_ziom05-d4x74l7.jpg )
114793
>>114765
>Newfoal
That's a term for humans-turned-pony in the CB universe. Be careful with it.

And the rest of it is...
Well, it's incredibly run-of-the-mill. Antagonist from previous episode has lived difficult life (which equals a Freudian Excuse for them being a jerk), clashes with main cast, comes back later and learns life lesson or, in the case of your character, not, since she thinks being a douche is A-OK if it was part of the act. In the end everyone has a lovey-dovey group hug and become BFFs.

To be perfectly blunt, it's a hackneyed plot that, from what you've laid out, attempts nothing new and even tries to be worse than every other example in some respects (the "it was just an act" bit completely defeating point of the episode's Aesop).

But I digress.

On the topic of your synopsis:
Behold, the return of the Great and Powerful Trixie! Tremble in awe at her great feats of magical prowess! Weep at her bitter tale of survival on the mean streets of [Insert suitable pony-themed city here]! Curse the name of the fraud and charlatan Twilight Sparkle! Cheer on Trixie as she returns, head held high, to Ponyville as she seeks her rightful retribution!

--

This establishes a disconnect between what Trixie thinks of herself compared to the reality of the situation. She's prideful to a fault, refuses to acknowledge her weaknesses and shifts the blame for her own failures.
>> No. 114823
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114823
>>114793
thanks for the comment about the newfoal thing. what would you call a newborn filly?

The rest of it though... Well I'd probably drive myself insane trying to write something you would smile at, but I think the execution would speak for itself better than I can, granted I am the pony who wrote it. I don't think you understand the point of the story though. Judging by that synopsis, you still think thatTrixie really is a mean pony, or that she was even mean at all in the episode itself. I've completely rewritten her character, and she is nothing like th Trixie you thought you knew. or at least that was my intent
Thanks for your help anyway.
>> No. 114828
>>114823
Just "foal" would suffice. It's gender-neutral and is the actual term.

There's a difference between making something I would find interesting and something good. You've described about 90% of the Trixie fics already made and offered nothing in the way of a new twist. To be frank (and feel free to prove me wrong), I doubt most people who are regulars on this board would care much for it. You're ticking boxes, pretty much. Execution is everything, of course, and if you manage to pull it off all the more power to you, but understand that it's not original in the least.

>I've completely rewritten her character, and she is nothing like th Trixie you thought you knew.
In other words, you're going to use a framing device to completely ignore established canon and re-imagine her without all of those finicky details like "Personality" and "Character". At that point, why use Trixie at all? An OC would serve that purpose. Why not write the story about the performer that brings her in instead? I don't think there's been a Trixie-centric story that wasn't actually told from Trixie's point of view yet.
>> No. 114847
File 134414567105.png - (112.32KB , 434x398 , 132631850347.png )
114847
>>114828
That unoriginal huh? Damn.

Not that I don't believe you, but could you point me in the direction of a story that mirrors mine? I'm being honest here, there's a lot in this fandom that I just haven't seen yet, like that damn Bubbles. I was going to write that, or at least something similar, until my friend showed it to me and I had to throw it out the window.

The reason an OC wouldn't work is because I'm trying to prove a point to the audience about Trixie. I truly believe what I've written, that she's not actually mean, and that everypony jumped to the wrong conclusion.

I could try to write the story from Sarf's point of view I guess, I'll just have to not kill him at the end. or maybe I could, I don't know. Actually, that sounds like a great idea. I'll throw this one at Fimfiction, and write a sequel from Sarf's point of view and throw that one at EQD.
>> No. 114850
File 134414664392.jpg - (50.15KB , 576x590 , 1323289947422-_n1333213563494_.jpg )
114850
>>114847
Don't fret; a fic that walks the beaten path can still be good if the writer is skilled and their heart is in it.
>> No. 114854
File 134414765410.jpg - (19.38KB , 511x528 , pinkamena squee.jpg )
114854
>>114850
Thanks, I'm already 200 words into the sequel, and I kinda like the story this time a lot better. I'll send it up through /fic/ as well when it's finished. This isn't the Story Forge thread--although it probably borders on it at times--so I'll have to stop there, but thank you for your help.
>> No. 114858
>>114847
Type in "Trixie" on FimFiction and throw a dart at one of them while blindfolded. Chances are you'll end up with a story about her redemption. At least she's not getting shipped with Twilight (I hope) since that would seal its fate as being completely bog-standard. Of Mares and Magic and whichever story it was that Gravekeeper had a thread for here would be the two examples I can remember off the top of my head. Liar was about Trixie being rotten and how she'll always be that way, which was a nice change of pace but was ultimately bland and relied on a gimmick to sell the story.

I'm glad you like the idea. Makes me feel like I actually contributed more than some armchair reviewing of a story that has yet to be properly written ;p. You never did comment on my suggestion for the synopsis, though.
>> No. 114859
File 134414964497.jpg - (48.33KB , 900x831 , pinkamena what.jpg )
114859
>>114858
Was I unclear about that. Oops.
>Behold, the return of the Great and Powerful Trixie! Tremble in awe at her great feats of magical prowess! Weep at her bitter tale of survival on the mean streets of [Insert suitable pony-themed city here]! Curse the name of the fraud and charlatan Twilight Sparkle! Cheer on Trixie as she returns, head held high, to Ponyville as she seeks her rightful retribution!
You're missing the point of the piece. This would be an excellent description if I wanted to portray her as mean or resentful, but the fact of the matter is, I don't believe she is. I firmly believe that Trixie is a kind pony, and was only bragging to sell her show. And if the audience members actually had some talent, well, she had to step up her game a little, and shut them down. You've heard of rap battles haven't you? The point is to insult the other pony, and tell them how inferior they are. Isn't that just what Trixie was doing in her performance. You've got a great synopsis right there, but for a story that just isn't mine.
>> No. 114863
File 134415116374.png - (828.50KB , 900x636 , mlp___under_burning_skies_by_huussii-d59grv6.png )
114863
>>114859
She invited them up and she never beat them at their own game, just magic-ed up some embarrassing moments.
She's all bluster no muster. Her magic is limited to smoke and mirrors, her act built off of impressing ignorant townsfolk, her finale insulting and sabotaging those that question her abilities. She treated her fans like dirt and when the going got tough she got going, right out of Ponyville.

There is no way you can play "It was part of the act" from that. Maybe some master author could, but not you, maybe not even a different writer in the fandom itself could realistically pull that off from what we saw in her episode. If you want her to be a kind pony, make her a kind pony when she opens up to the cast's friendship (which would be realistically spread over several chapters that take place across at least a handful of months). Starting out from that point is nothing more than an exercise in writing since the main point behind the vast majority of Trixie fics, that of her improving as an individual, is lost. There's nothing to work towards than some empty (in regards to actual story substance) show. If you watch that episode, really watch it and reflect on just how much of a, to put it bluntly, douche Trixie is, you'll see where I'm coming from.
Oh, and rumor has it Trixie is returning in Season Three, so your entire work may very well be ret-conned to fill a half-hour timeslot dedicated to selling a plastic pony to six-year old girls and, more discreetly, twenty-year old men. Might want to consider holding off on it if you can be patient enough.

I'm just trying to help you. If that involves telling you that the idea your story hinges on is garbage, then so be it.
Here, a smiley face to soften the blow.
:)
>> No. 114867
File 134415196070.png - (73.20KB , 125x125 , 132631965934.png )
114867
>>114863
Hmm, that's a strong point. I could work it in though. Over the years she lost focus on the central point of what her mentor taught her, and focused too much on slamming the crowd. Something like that. It plays into her wanting to change her past too, which is in fact in my story. And the smiley face is a kind gesture, which shows that you mean no ill will, but it in no way softens the blow. Although to be honest you're going to have to hit me a lot harder than that to leave a mark.
>> No. 114870
File 134415338724.png - (42.54KB , 100x125 , 132632001105.png )
114870
>>114867
>>114863
I just took a look at the episode again, following your advice and paying close attention to her attitude. You're right, she's a bigger jerk than I realized. Of course all this means is that I simply need to write another chapter showing how her ego got the better of her after Sarf died, I could make her bitter too, oh the twists I could throw into this. Thanks for pointing that out Ion, you've just given me more writing material. this is turning into a delightful little tale, and expanding rapidly
>> No. 114885
>>114870
>>114867
I try.
Be careful about how it's expanding. That's how my old stories died; they grew beyond what I could hope to achieve with my meagre skill.

>It plays into her wanting to change her past too, which is in fact in my story.
Which is in fact most Trixie stories.

>Sarf
This doesn't sound like a pony name, it sounds like a name-name. It should be representative of his talent. Perhaps Mirror Smoke?

>Although to be honest you're going to have to hit me a lot harder than that to leave a mark.
Your face looks like it caught fire and someone put it out with a fork.
...
Anything yet?
>> No. 114914
>>114885
Plenty of sage advice in this thread, but this line in particular:
>Be careful about how it's expanding. That's how my old stories died; they grew beyond what I could hope to achieve with my meagre skill.
Wise words for us to all keep in mind.
>> No. 114940
>>114914
>wise
My beard isn't nearly long enough for that. Try "Words born from experience". The wise man learns from the fool's mistakes, and I've learned from plenty of my own.
>> No. 115196
File 134432793633.jpg - (70.44KB , 250x370 , sadcadance.jpg )
115196
I'll tell you a story. It's a tale about a unicorn with wings. I'll tell you about the Princess that kept her alive, the filly that taught her to care, and the stallion she loved. This is her story... it's my story.

>Cadance story focusing on her past and how she grew up.
>> No. 115226
The Conversion Bureau: One Pony's Terrorist
[Dark] [Adventure] [Alternate Universe] [Human]
It is a new era on Earth, an era humans such as Jack Beckett are wary of. Civilization is in a tough spot, and a new continent appears in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, its pony citizens bringing promises of utopic peace, freedom, and harmony. The catch? You must give up your own humanity and become a pony yourself. Many do, and see this as an opportunity to bring about a better Earth. Jack Beckett and the Human Liberation Front, however, see something entirely different.

I've had someone in the Training Grounds look at it. I was told it was basically TCB as a whole with just a little thing at the end, which I agree with, but I have no idea what to do with this.
>> No. 116703
File 134535013780.jpg - (11.72KB , 200x260 , 200px-Sherlock_Holmes_Portrait_Paget.jpg )
116703
The Secret Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

Dearest Billy.

It is with a heavy hand and heavy heart that I must relate to you the news: He is dead, and passed away among his bees only a few days ago. I too am not long of this earth, and it falls to you to publish my final wish. The attached parcel is my tin box, you have ferried to and fro before, and it is where notes from all our adventures, spanning two centuries, two wars and three monarchs had been safely kept. The remaining bundles within, however, we agreed some time ago to never publish, lest our reputations be shredded. However, with his passing heavy on my mind, I cannot forget such cases, so singular and impressive that they prove, without a doubt, that Sherlock Holmes was the greatest detective London, Britannia, and worlds beyond even our farthest imaginations had ever known. Nor should the public, who have no doubt heard of the tragedy. The cases within will confuse you, and perhaps even tarnish your memories of us, but take my word: They are as true and real as the paper on which you read this letter.


Faithfully Your’s,
Dr John Watson M.D.
>> No. 116716
File 134536461607.jpg - (116.77KB , 900x913 , 132907995915-131671163659.jpg )
116716
>>11519
Evocative of Final Fantasy X's opening. This is a good thing if your fic will be melancholy and introspective.

>>115226
Since TCB is pretty well-known--I've learned things about it despite avoiding it like the plague--and it's referenced in your title, I'd say drop the recap-y bit. Maybe something more like:

Jack Beckett hasn't been taken in by the lies. He knows that these pastel ponies have something planned.

Just what it is doesn't matter, because Jack and the Human Liberation Front are going to shut them down.


>>116703
Oh, me gusta. Using an in-universe note--in true late-nineteeth-century style!--allows you to slip little questions into the reader's mind without resorting to rhetoricals. I'm not even big on Holmes, but this would still pique my curiosity. Seen on a pony site such as FiMFiction, your synopsis would have me salivating.

A couple of things, though:
As far as I know, the correct way to handle mid-sentence asides such as
>you have ferried [it] to and fro before
and
>and perhaps even tarnish your memories of us
is with em dashes. Of course, if Doyle didn't use them you shouldn't either for this project. As the greater scholar of Holmes it is your choice.

Finally, unless it's a Doyle thing you'll want to lose the apostrophe in "Yours" at the end there.
>> No. 116726
>>116716
Oh, you flatter me!

But the piece is far from completion, sadly. Doyle is *hard* to recreate, and I am always retracing my steps, ensuring that I have him done right. I must say I feel a little in over my head. Thank you, though, for the advice. It means a bunch.
>> No. 116759
File 134540023460.jpg - (88.43KB , 640x640 , 1309213167815_display.jpg )
116759
The synopsis of my Ponystar Celestia:
>Years after the wedding of Princess Cadance and Shining Armor, Equestria has expanded its borders. This expansion has led to the creation of massive airships known as "ponystars," which protect settlers and civilian caravans.

>This is the story of one such ponystar, as she and her crew face an attack from a mysterious foe that threatens the very survival of ponykind.

>Can these ponies and their friendships survive when the enemy could be anypony?

Aye, I used a rhetorical. I keep wanting to replace it and keep coming up blank. Any suggestions?

>>116726
>Oh, you flatter me!
Heh, I make it a point never to flatter; insincerity only hurts both parties in the long run. I do plead guilty to gushing when I see something I enjoy, though.

>Doyle is *hard* to recreate [...] I must say I feel a little in over my head.
If your synopsis is any indication, you're on the right track. I hope you post your fic in the Training Grounds.

>Thank you, though, for the advice. It means a bunch.
You're very welcome! Ah like helpin' the pony folk, heh.
>> No. 116760
File 134540086676.jpg - (32.83KB , 236x176 , 1316267305688.jpg )
116760
>>116759
>I do plead guilty to gushing when I see something I enjoy, though.
You?? Naaaaah ;)
>> No. 117673
If anyone can tell me what their initial thoughts are when they see this that would be very helpful. One reader got the wrong impression of what my story is about.

Black Box
[dark][adventure][sad]

Cutie Marks:Their appearance marks a very joyous occasion for the youth of Equestria, but not all cutie marks are innocent. Some unlucky foals develop much darker natured marks. These young ponies all soon disappear without a trace, never to be heard from again. They disappear to Black Box.
>> No. 117694
>>116716
um was 11519 meant for me?
>> No. 117734
File 134616245367.png - (174.15KB , 782x1106 , derpy_hooves_vector_by_chiko997-d3j9719.png )
117734
>>117694
Wha--? Oh! Yeah, yeah it was. Sorry; I must've dropped a digit somewhere.
>> No. 118549
Twilight Sparkle loves books. She also loves reading, and using magic. What harm could just reading another book do? Well, it depends entire on the contents of the book you read. What would happen if Twilight were to find a book of dark magics that could give her supreme power over all of Equestria? Corrupted once by the evil powers of Discord, could she be overwhelmed by darkness and consumed by power?

Without all six, the Elements of Harmony are useless. The only way to fight the power of Darkness is with the love of Light. Twilights friends will have to combine all of their love and courage together to stand up to her and stop the darkness within her.
>> No. 119646
>>118549
Seems more like a plot recap than a teaser. Also, half of the first paragraph is rhetorical questions >_> .
>> No. 119774
Seeing as I'm nearing the point where I'd be comfortable releasing my own fic, I figure I'd better set about refining my synopsis.

Title: Star-crossed
Tags: [Adventure] and maybe [Dark]
Synopsis: A fire in the Royal Archives. A mysterious, unreadable scroll. An enigmatic figure cloaked in darkness. Fate conspires to draw Twilight Sparkle and her friends into a quest that will lead them across the breadth of Equestria. From high peaks to deep dungeons, from modern streets to ancient ruins, our heroines will delve into their homeland’s primeval history, and the revelations they unearth will decide not only their own destinies, but the doom of their entire world.
>> No. 119775
File 134797935180.png - (269.68KB , 945x945 , 133896582521.png )
119775
>>119774
Pic related. It sounds very cinematic, which in my opinion is a very good thing.

Only suggestion I have is that I'd change "doom" to "fate" at the end there, given the connotations. That is of course unless the end is bleak and you want folks to knkw that going in.
>> No. 119809
>>119775

Good to know I'm on the right track.

I see what you mean about the use of "doom." The ending I have planned is not "bleak," exactly, so it might indeed be a bit misleading. That said, a little intentional misdirection might be a good thing--put the reader in a state of suspense from the get-go.

Hm. I'll have to think about this, maybe flip a coin. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
>> No. 119825
>>119774
>>119775

Yeah. You're setting the tone for a cinematic [adventure] fic, which will probably draw some in and ward others away. If you mean for your fic to be some great epic adventure, which I feel like you do, then this is actually good as it is.

Yes, "doom" says that something really awful is going to happen. You could even rephrase that to say something about the world being destroyed. This is cheesy--don't use this--but a line like "shattering forever the world as they know it" or some bullshit.
>> No. 119846
The Ancient Heart's First Beating

News of a momentous event taking place in a tiny, ordinary town reaches the castle. The Royal Sisters immediately make preparations for a royal visit to East Hayshire.

This is a story about love.

=====================================================

It's a very flowery, sappy fic. The event alluded to in the synopsis is the birth of a special child, but I wanted to keep it ambiguous. It's [sad] by virtue of being a sappy emotional thing, but I hate the fact that I'm labeling it "sad." The story is just full of positive energy. There's a tearful goodbye and a deathbed scene. That's it. Ugh.

Ingredients: First person Celestia. OC "goddess." Deathbed scene. OC supporting characters. Motherhood. Princess Cadence. Allergy warnings: Contains flashbacks and dream sequences. May contain traces of Crying Woona.

there, now this post is less awful
>> No. 119949
>>119846
Don't keep that ambiguous. Explain it fully, because your synopsis is too general and barely describes anything about your story, and it completely fails to make me want to read it.
>> No. 119960
File 134810447028.jpg - (96.62KB , 648x500 , velvet mom.jpg )
119960
Hm. I thought the picture would draw people in pretty well, and that the vagueness of the synopsis would be okay because it wouldn't have to assert that the story is interesting.

Let's see.
========================================================

Once in a lifetime.

To an immortal Goddess, the phrase "once in a lifetime" can mean many things.

It is news of a once in a lifetime event that prompts Celestia and Luna to immediately make preparations for a visit to tiny East Hayshire.

This is a story about love.
>> No. 119971
File 134811443507.jpg - (13.86KB , 480x360 , spellcard_4.jpg )
119971
>>119960
The simplicity of the pic certainly works well with the vague tone of the summary, I'll give you that.

The only thing I can mention is that I get the feeling that the "once in a life time" needs to be hyphenated in the full sentence, since it's being used as a descriptor for "event" rather than as an subject-ish-sort-of phrase itself, although that's more personal preference? rule of thumb? than hard-and-fast rule.
>> No. 119972
>>119971

First off, I don't normally hyphenate compound words for any reason. Just a personal thing.

To actually address what you're saying, though, i actually mean lifetime as an item i.e. "only one in your lifetime."
>> No. 119979
File 134811762020.png - (77.40KB , 197x435 , tea_2.png )
119979
>>119972
>It is news of a once in a lifetime event
>[once in a lifetime] event
Whoops, added an extra space in my previous post. What I meant by descriptor/subject attribution was me reading your sentence phrased like above.

But yeah, really, apart from that minor personal preference, I think you're good to go. ^_^
>> No. 119982
I hate to be a necromancer, but does anyone have an opinion on my synopsis (>>116759)?

I'm not quite narcissistic enough to believe that its utter perfection is what has kept it comment-less for a month.
>> No. 119983
>>116759

Anchoring it to the wedding is an odd choice, though now that I think about it I guess it's because the enemies are changelings. Maybe make that clearer.

Try to make some kind of compromise between the inevitable associations that your audience will make with science fiction, and the actual setting of your fic.
>> No. 119996
File 134812602044.gif - (29.45KB , 256x192 , phoenix-sheepish_a_.gif )
119996
>>119983
>Anchoring it to the wedding is an odd choice, though now that I think about it I guess it's because the enemies are changelings. Maybe make that clearer.
Heh, actually I was just trying to give it a temporal anchor without going meta ("years after season 2" or some such) and trying to imply that I'm likely not going to work in much from Season 3 (though we'll see how that goes). I want the changelings to be a bit of a surprise, though readers who know Battlestar Galactica should figure that out right quick.

>Try to make some kind of compromise between the inevitable associations that your audience will make with science fiction, and the actual setting of your fic.
Sorry, I can't reading comprehension tonight. Wat you say? That is: what "inevitable associations" do you mean?
>> No. 120005
>>119996

The words Star and Galactic plus the crossover material bring to mind images of space battles and warp gates. This is inevitable. Be aware of that and try to run with it or work against it.
>> No. 120008
File 134814002889.jpg - (28.66KB , 550x400 , tumblr_m67251cAiU1ql43kko1_1280.jpg )
120008
ITP: I'm thick.

>>120005
Well now... There are--or rather, there will be as of my newest chapter--dogfights (pegasi v. changelings) and capital ship combat in my fic, and I've already got analogues for nukes and Cylon skinjobs... I think I'm mostly okay for that kind of thing.

Not sure how to go about advertising it in the synopsis, though; I could try for something "action movie trailer"-esque, but I'm trying to establish more of a melancholic, brooding air (without plagarizing the TV show's opening, natch)...

Argh!
>> No. 120697
[Adventure][Alternate Universe]

In an Equestria where Discord never was, and the Pony Princesses never came to power, a young Twilight Sparkle loses her family in a crowd during the Summer Sun Celebration. Little does she know that her very existence is about to set a series of events into motion that won't just take her further beyond the borders of Equestria than anypony before her, but will also change the fates of both the nation and her life, forever.
>> No. 121410
Uh, hi! Just wondering if anyone could give me some advice on how to make this synopsis any better.

Hearts Aflutter
[Romance] [Sad]
It all begins with a night spent above the clouds…
Overnight, everything changes for Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash as they at last begin to realise; they’ve always been a little more than just friends. As they unravel their newfound feelings, discovering more about each other and themselves, a single question runs through their minds – “Does she feel the same?” But after Rainbow Dash makes
a mistake that could take a lifetime to mend, can she and Fluttershy ever be together - or will she lose her closest friend forever?
Additional Tags: Loss, Hurt, Recovery
>> No. 121769
File 134977667143.jpg - (8.72KB , 180x276 , sketchy_patchy.jpg )
121769
>>120697
>In an Equestria where Discord never was, and the Pony Princesses never came to power, a young Twilight Sparkle loses her family in a crowd during the Summer Sun Celebration. Little does she know that her very existence is about to set a series of events into motion that won't just take her further beyond the borders of Equestria than anypony before her, but will also change the fates of both the nation and her life, forever.
Well, it's not bad. You spend half of it establishing your AU world - good - and then you spend the other half of it with a vague promise of what'll happen - not bad, but not very attractive, either. Perhaps revealing more about the driving conflict of the story would be more interesting.

>>121410
>It all begins with a night spent above the clouds…
>Overnight, everything changes for Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash as they at last begin to realise; they’ve always been a little more than just friends.
replace semi-colon with "that". See, you're not using it wrong in terms of function, but the pause that it gives to the sentence makes the sentence unwieldy, because the two parts you're joining are closely related (hence better if it was a continuous sentence) rather than somewhat related (which is where semi-colons come in normally).

>As they unravel their newfound feelings, discovering more about each other and themselves, a single question runs through their minds – “Does she feel the same?” But after Rainbow Dash makes a mistake that could take a lifetime to mend, can she and Fluttershy ever be together - or will she lose her closest friend forever?
Well, ends fairly nicely, although finding a way to get rid of the rhetorical sentence would make it better. But yeah, sounds about right.
>> No. 121774
>>121769

Thanks a lot for your feedback!

It's been here for so long I had almost given up hope for a response.
>> No. 121868
So i could use a little help with this synopsis.

Canterlot is a city of prestige, of high class, and of fashion. So pretty much a ‘city of fakers’ as far as Ghostwriter is concerned. It’s not exactly the best place for a socially awkward and introverted pony with weird quirks. The only thing keeping him there is his job as the royal scribe. Now Celestia is sending him to Ponyville. So it’s the simple life for him... right?
>> No. 121883
File 134991516043.jpg - (42.81KB , 1210x660 , the_binding_of_my_little_isaac_by_larrle-d4fua7p.jpg )
121883
What is it with me and suspiciously dark crossovers? Honestly, between this and The RED Cataclysm, you'd think I only tangentially cared about this whole "My Little Pony" thing. Anyway, the following is the synopsis of a under-heavy-development crossover I've just gotten started on between My Little Pony and a video game called "The Binding of Isaac."

My Little Unicorn: Friends Till The End
[Dark][Sad][Crossover][Human]
Twilight Sparkle wasn't expecting to have an eventful day. Neither was Isaac.
She wasn't expecting to have her world turned upside down and inside out. Neither was Isaac.
She wasn't expecting to have anything try to kill her. Neither was Isaac.
She wasn't expecting to make a new friend. Neither was Isaac.
They couldn't have been more wrong.

Incidentally, are there plans to make a new thread once this one autosages?
>> No. 121910
>>121883
You might want to change the name of your fic. Firstly because "My Little X" titles are cliche and utterly bland, and secondly because "My Little Unicorn" inadvertently associates your story with this:
http://www.fimfiction.net/story/9894/My-Little-Unicorn%3A-Magic-is-Believing

That's not an association you want, believe me.
>> No. 121917
>>121910
Huh. I was unaware of this project's existence. I thought that was clever, you see, because "My Little Unicorn" is the name of a power-up from The Binding of Isaac that grants temporary invincibility. Oh well. Guess I'm gonna have to go with the backup title, then: "The Five Horses of the Apocalypse."

But enough about that. What about the synopsis?
>> No. 121927
>>121769
Wow, even just the changes you mentioned make it a hell of a lot better.
I'll definitely see what I can do about those rhetorical questions.
Thanks for taking a look!
>> No. 121928
>>121927
It all begins with a night spent above the clouds…
Overnight, everything changes for Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash as they at last begin to realise that they’ve always been a little more than just friends. As they unravel their newfound feelings, discovering more about each other and themselves, they can't help but wonder if they both feel the same way – and after Rainbow Dash makes a mistake that could take a lifetime to mend, she fears that she may lose her closest friend forever.

Howzat? Also, sorry for double-posting if it's a problem.
>> No. 121939
File 134996255106.jpg - (253.54KB , 640x480 , eiling_kakuya.jpg )
121939
>>121868
>Canterlot is a city of prestige, of high class, and of fashion. So pretty much a ‘city of fakers’ as far as Ghostwriter is concerned.
Warning bells right off the first bat, mate. Do you know what's the difference between someone whiny and someone disillusioned with modern society? The person disillusioned has a reason to which actually matters - it could be that he's lost a business due to sham contractors, or his financial advisers did a number on his stock and ran out of town. The whiny person just whines.

We don't know what's the reason for Ghostwriter's immensely negative opinion of something that, canonically, is the heart of an almost painfully idyll land of harmony. It isn't justified. In some cases, it doesn't have to be, but when the first thing we find out about Ghost is that he hates Canterlot and all who life in it - a negative trait - that doesn't leave a very good impression. So, I'd end up marking him off as whiny right from the start.

>It’s not exactly the best place for a socially awkward and introverted pony with weird quirks.
Second warning bell. The thing about anti-heroes is that there's always at least something to like about them. Allow me to rant a bit:

There's this manga called "It's not My Fault that I'm Not Popular!". The main character is this seriously delusional, borderline insane high school girl who has a love-hate relationship with the concept of popularity, which she does not have (hence the love and hate). She's got self-esteem that fluctuates like a sine wave and is, on the whole, as removed as one can get from a normal person while at the same time being completely average. But she tries, and you can't help but feel sorry for her, because you start wondering what it's like and you sympathize.

The thing is, this is presented through her actions and inner thoughts. It isn't something that you put into a summary, because doing so presents the information of the character being unrelatable without context to keep your readers interested. It's possibly the worst way to present a character whose base starts from the negative side of the spectrum (examples: Harry Potter has it bad but he's full of hope; Bertie Wooster is adorably British, Jeeves is brilliant and British, Doctor Who is enigmatic and very strongly presented as the good guy - these are characters that start from the positive end of the spectrum), because it lets us know he's negative without giving us a reason to care (nor do you have that chance, because that's not what a summary is for).

>The only thing keeping him there is his job as the royal scribe. Now Celestia is sending him to Ponyville. So it’s the simple life for him... right?
Actions need reasons unless they're fairly normal given the context. So he's the royal scribe. Celestia sends him to Ponyville. That's pretty easily misinterpreted as Because Plot because it really is something completely out of the blue to do. Scribes have to keep track of a lot of things, after all, especially in a city as established as Canterlot, so why the heck is he getting sent away? Because plot. Or, rather, because plot until we see otherwise, but there isn't anything to convince us of it.

Also, ellipses followed by rhetorical question, kill it with fire. Seriously. Ellipses are bad enough, but then you combine it with a rhetorical question, both of which give ambiguity, which is the least of what you should present seeing as it's when the reader's unsure whether he should read it or not.

Also, the actual conflict presented, awkward OC goes to Ponyville, doesn't really sound promising, because, well, it could very well be a self-insert, a Gary Stu, or both. There's nothing interesting in that there's nothing you could dream up that we can't dream up ourselves. I reviewed Multiversity's rewrite of "New Neighbours" rather extensively (it's on EqD if you're curious as to why I'm mentioning it), and his plot started off with 3 OCs arriving in Equestria. I gave him quite a bit of hell for it.

If your central conflict isn't awkward OC goes to Ponyville, then I'd suggest putting your central conflict in there. If not, well...

>Three new ponies from three different walks of life move to a town we're all so familiar with. One is cynical, one is frighteningly calm and quiet, and one is utterly mad. Let's see what we can do about that, eh? All the while, the shadows writhe behind them...
He presents the interesting parts of said OCs, and ends it with the hint of something greater lurking under the surface. Basically, the hook.

>>121883
"Five Horses" isn't a very nice title, I'd feel. = I think the main attraction of your cover is that it's a Binding of Issac crossover, which people would either know and hence love immensely or not know and feel indifferent (I've heard of it before but haven't played it, so I'm the sort in the middle). Rather than "My Little Unicorn" as the BoI-related thing, why not go with maybe "The Binding of Twilight" or something where the pony element is the secondary one?

Incidentally, I know enough about it to know that BoI is horrifically dark, but your synopsis doesn't really have anything that strikes me as such. Maybe it's me being desensitized to death, but the conflict in your summary is just not very horrific, y'know? Not that it's bad, just, if you were going for ultra-dark, it didn't really convey as much.

>>121928
Seems better to me. I'd stick around a couple more days to see if anyone else pitches in, though.
>> No. 121947
Well, that's it, folks! We're autosaged! Now what?
>> No. 121949
>>121939
Okay how about something like

If there is one thing Ghostwriter knows it's that sometimes a position doesn't give you the respect it's supposed to, such as his position as royal scribe and the high class ponies of Canterlot. While the position is treated with prestige, the pony holding it is an outcast. When Ghost nearly throws his life away trying to stop the theft of the Rune Guide, Celestia decides to send him to Ponyville to interview the mane six. Now on top of retrieving the Rune Guide, Ghostwriter has to deal with a town that's not quite as quaint as it seems.
>> No. 121957
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>>121947
Now I stuff this thread with images that probably only CoS would get a kick out of!

>>121949
Slightly better.

>If there is one thing Ghostwriter knows it's that
knows, it's

>sometimes a position doesn't give you the respect it's supposed to,
Self-entitlement. It's one of the things I can stand the least of. Listen, see... having a position isn't enough to warrant respect. Respect is earned. And I'm saying so because my government is run, half by idiots, and half by very cunning people who are sucking our finances dry, who have done nothing to earn that position except be born into a family of politicians, so I'd know that. Having a position doesn't crapangit entitle you to anything except the paycheck, and even then whether or not that's rightly given depends on whether you're doing the work. Well, that's my stand, at least, and I think I've refrained wonderfully from overreacting (in the form of italics abuse, because standards). Ugh. Excuse me.

>such as his position as royal scribe and the high class ponies of Canterlot.
Refer to the above. Actually, this part is rather irrelevant to the conflict, and doesn't give me insight into his character at all, so I'd just get rid of this altogether.

>While the position is treated with prestige, the pony holding it is an outcast.
Refer to above, and probably restructure based on the fact (read: opinion) that his position doesn't really mean squat when it comes to making an interesting story.

>When Ghost nearly throws his life away trying to stop the theft of the Rune Guide, Celestia decides to send him to Ponyville to interview the mane six.
...the connection between first half and second half is lost on me. Because seriously, there isn't a connection between doing something heroic and getting sent to an interview.

>Now on top of retrieving the Rune Guide,
See, this here would be a better connection, except that it raises a few questions:

1) so this Rune Guide is important, yeah. So why aren't Celestia's agents (the army, Shining Armour, what have you, heck, even Luna) doing it?
2) he's getting sent to Ponyville for an interview. There's an implied connection between the two, but it still feels forced, because he's going there under Celestia's orders, not by his own volition. If it was the latter, then yeah, it'd be him having tracked it down to there. But he's getting sent, and you're implying that the Rune Guide just so happens to be there as well, which is prime space for poking holes in.

>Ghostwriter has to deal with a town that's not quite as quaint as it seems.
Probably the best thing in the summary, if you ignore the lurking implications of OC trumps Mane 6, because if there was a big problem, you'd think that they'd have solved it by now - AJ the community girl, RD the hero, Twilight Sparkle the conspiracy enthusiast, you know, those ponies.
>> No. 121959
>>121939
Thanks for the suggestions, Casca. And yes, now that I think about it, the synopsis isn't as indicative of the story's contents as it could be. I've reworked the synopsis a little to make it more indicative and darker. How does this sound?

The Binding of Twilight / The Five Horses of the Apocalypse [both of these are working titles]
[Dark][Sad][Crossover][Human]
Twilight Sparkle wasn't expecting to have an eventful day. Neither was Isaac.
She wasn't expecting to make a new friend. Neither was Isaac.
She wasn't expecting to go on a spiritual journey. Neither was Isaac.
She wasn't expecting to be drenched in the blood, sweat and bile of her newfound enemies and allies alike. Neither was Isaac.
They couldn't have been more wrong.

How's that, then?
>> No. 121967
>>121957

Kay, not exactly what i was trying to say. How about...

The royal scribe is a position handpicked by the Princesses. The pony picked would be respected for the skills needed to obtain it, or at least that's what Ghostwriter thought. He was only half right. While the position is respected, the pony holding it is an outcast. After Ghost nearly throws his life away to stop the theft of the Rune Guide, Celestia decides he needs a friend or two. She sends him to Ponyville under the guise of interviewing the mane six. Now on top of secretly retrieving the Rune Guide, Ghost has to deal with a town that's not as quaint as it seems.
>> No. 121971
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121971
>>121959
Yep, that's definitely more dark. Seems good to me!
>> No. 122132
Hey, all. I’m alive and fairly well, just inactive. New thread at >>122131

>>121959
The potential problem I see is that you’re not doing much for readers unfamiliar with Binding of Isaac. If you want to attract readers unfamiliar with the source material, you’ll need more description of your story’s specifics, rather than the broader references to BoI. This depends on the readership you’re looking for. The title is another way to signal this; “The Five Horses of the Apocalypse” will likely be more attractive to non-BoI people than “The Binding of Twilight” would.
>> No. 126540
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>> No. 130853
Who's calling? <a href=" http://xvideos.xmov8.com/ ">xvideos</a> Nice to watch a film with natural sounds from the girl, not the average butchering a pig type of crap
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