The dreaded synopsis. It’s the rare author who truly embraces the synopsis, even those who consider themselves plotters. Mostly I guess, because the synopsis you write for submission is probably quite different from the one you write to plot the book for yourself. For one, you’ll be forced to write complete sentences.
Most of my clients write, or at least send, the synopsis last. Usually they work hard on those submission chapters and send me the synopsis only after we’ve got the chapters nailed down. The problem with this is that a synopsis can, and should, greatly change the chapters you first started with. It’s something I hadn’t really thought of until recently and something I bet a lot of authors ignore.
When I review a synopsis, I’m looking at it as if I’m reading a condensed version of the book. I want to know how the characters are going to grow and change, if the plot is smooth and makes sense, and if it takes the story to the level I think that particular story needs to be taken to. So when I edit a synopsis I’m editing to make sure all of those things are in there. Sometimes that means adding or improving upon the story in a way that changes the first chapters you’ve written. Which means, you might need to go through and rewrite or at least heavily revise the chapters we once thought were complete.
Just as I’ve often recommending writing your pitch before you write your book, I recommend reviewing and potentially revising chapters once the synopsis has been finalized. Writing a synopsis, like a pitch, should give you insight into what makes your story stronger.