Silja Swaby, half Jamaican, half Finnish, is a marine biologist and author. Funded by Arts Council England, she has won competitions, and been placed in prizes and awards. She is working on a series of futuristic thrillers, featuring a female biologist whose quiet academic life takes a drastic turn. Silja has taken creative writing courses at Cambridge University and more recently Yale University, USA.

Silja tutors writers, gives workshops, and provides a critique service. She is happily unmarried and lives in deepest Somerset, UK.

Silja Swaby is pronounced Sil-yah Sway-bee.

May 07, 2009

The dreaded synopsis

I've just run a workshop for the Society of Women Writers and Journalists (SWWJ) on synopses and submissions. I contacted 21 agents and politely asked for copies of synopses that worked. A long shot I grant you, but three did reply - not with examples but advice. Tina Foster's reply was full of tips, but Leslie Gardner said 'a synopsis is not what sells a book – the narrative does'.

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