Book 3 of the Free Court of Seattle series doesn’t have a working title yet. But as of tonight, it does have a one-sentence summary! And I’m working on a longer one as well, which will be used to plan out an outline, and get me going on the actual writing.
This is how I do it, thanks to a technique I picked up from back in the day when I was going to Writer’s Weekend. Start with one sentence, along the lines of a “thirty second elevator pitch”, or as I also like to think of it, “what would be listed on the Tivo if this were a movie or a TV show”.
Then take that one sentence and expand it into five. Then take each of those five sentences and expand it into a paragraph. Then take those paragraphs and expand each of their sentences into a paragraph. By which point I should in theory have a full plot synopsis!
And I’m getting that ball rolling with both Book 3 and with Shake the Light, the Free Court prequel that will be the origin story of Millicent Merriweather.
Here’s the single sentence for Book 3:
“When impossible wild magic hurls them to St. John’s, Newfoundland, Kendis Thompson and Christopher MacSimidh must seek the aid of Christopher’s Warder family to get him home again before he’s struck down by his own magic—or by the mysterious assailants out to take his life.”
And here’s the five-sentence summary for Shake the Light:
“The first daughter in two generations of her family to carry the full strength of the Warder magic, Millicent Wray is determined to find a city of her own to protect and defend. Seattle, Washington seems like just the place, for its Wards are down, its Warder gravely ill. But as she takes on the burden of restoring Seattle’s magical protections, Millie soon discovers that malevolent forces are rising from the depths of Lake Washington, bent on claiming the ailing Warder Catherine Heino’s power for their own—and Catherine, her strength shattered by polio, is desperate enough to bargain with them. Now Millie, with her Texas-born tenacity and her trusty shotgun Butch, is all that stands between the vulnerable city and the hungry spirits from the lake. Can she lay the kodama to rest before they claim all of Seattle—and Catherine’s life—with their vengeance?”
The five-sentence versions of both of these summaries are about to go onto my In Progress page!
And boy howdy am I looking forward to both of these plots. Insert authorial muahahaha here. 😀