Once upon a time, when someone was done writing a book (or even before), they tried to find a publisher, or an agent and then a publisher, willing to take on their book. Of course, that was eons ago – say, oh, five years or so. Now we’re in the self-determining Age of Self-Publishing, and although you can read a thousand blog entries and promo pieces on exactly what you MUST DO to self-publish, the must-dos of the agented sale era have passed into dust as surely as the portrait of Dorian Gray. Such as? Such as writing the perfect book proposal (the what?)
You know – the synopsis that MUST NOT exceed 300 words that would somehow nonetheless summarize how epicly consequential and not to be missed your debut novel was. Only after you had sweated your way through multiple drafts of your perfect pitch could you begin the ancient authorly initiation process of collecting rejection letters.
Today, we’re well past that. Now we have a multitude of progressive ways to go about wasting endless amounts of time without result, such as social media and worse (wait a minute – is there anything worse?) But still, there’s something to be said for making the effort to capture the essence of your genius in an economical, easily digested prose package of, well, about 300 words.
That’s what I concluded after spending some deja vu-tinged time this last weekend drafting a synopsis of my latest book at the suggestion of a publicist friend of my daughter. Bless her heart, she’d volunteered to see if she could score a review or two for me in – dare I hope to think it could happen – the real press. You know, the kind of review written by someone who is actually paid to write reviews. Reviews that might even be printed on paper as well as appear on-line. Quaint, yes, but ye Gods! A real review! Lord, take me now….
Anyway, here’s what I came up with. If you’re asking someone to review your book, you might decide that writing something a bit more serious than the traditional blurb to pave the way might be a worthwhile investment of time as well. If you do, here’s a good article on how to go about doing so.
Spoiler alert: If you’re planning to read The Lafayette Campaign, you probably don’t want to read this synopsis.
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THE LAFAYETTE CAMPAIGN
A Tale of Deception and Elections
The Lafayette Campaign provides a satirical take on American politics and our infatuation with technology that will make readers pause and wonder: could this really happen? The story begins at precisely where we are now in the current presidential election cycle, but without reference to a specific year.
Yes, life can imitate art. Or so it seems, with Donald Trump leaping to the top of the presidential polls, just as each implausible candidate does in The Lafayette Campaign. Those unlikely events lead a secret government agency to ask Frank Adversego, a brilliant but asocial, middle-aged cybersecurity expert, to find out who is hacking the polls. Adversego has just left his lonely bachelor life behind to write a book and find a better future. Finding no success in either venture, he signs on. He also encounters a young French hitchhiker named Josette who both beguiles and torments him.
As the election season progresses, Adversego discovers how the polls are being hacked, and also that a group of idealistic young French women, led by Josette, is behind the hack; their goal is to startle sensible American voters into voting for sane candidates before the U.S. elects another Leader of the Free World that does more harm than good. But their efforts fail, and persons unknown continue their poll tampering.
But there is worse to come. Josette becomes convinced that the primaries are being hacked as well, and manipulates Adversego to find out who – or indeed, how many different groups – are trying to steal the election. With the contest in a dead heat between a conservative candidate backed by a Cheney-esque political Dark Lord, a democratic president with lagging popularity, and a surprise Native American candidate attracting centrist Americans sick of partisan politics, time is short to discover and thwart the hackers before Election Day.
Adversego’s path to Election Day takes him across the country, through kidnapping and rescue, and betrayal by Josette as he unravels the complex skein of deceit and technical trickery that confront him. Ultimately, the election is saved, his book (co-written and co-opted by an aspiring author) is a success, and his personal life takes a more positive turn as he is taken under the wing of the French professor that unwittingly inspired the Josette and the Fils de Lafayette to embark upon their exploit. And the country celebrates the election of its first Native American president.
Find out how to stop Donald Trump while there’s still time! Read The Lafayette Campaign
Read sample chapters here