10 Second feedback. Ready. Steady….

Think you could give me 10 second feedback?

I have had some great bloggers give me their help with my synopsis so I thought I would bite the bullet and put it out there. Warts and all.
Please read the below, take 10 seconds to reflect, then scribble down what you think quickly and send a comment. It’s only my 37th draft, so please let fly and help me make it the best it can be.
And I’d be happy to return the favour anytime. Anyways, going to quit stalling. Here you go.


Stay low. Keep moving.

After Drake Theron ditches his wings and military brothers, he turns mercenary to forget a horrific battle where so much more than lives were lost.

When women start disappearing from the Angelbrawl Arena, Drake is hired to stop the loss of life and profit. He thinks it is just another job. Business. But it turns into something far more sinister and personal when he is abducted together with the beautiful woman he is trying to protect.
He is drawn into a conspiracy that stretches from the acrid stench of the neon Lowlands slums to Nimbus City and the very top of society. On the run, betrayed by friends, used by his enemies and hunted by black-winged assassins, Drake has to confront his past and do the worst thing imaginable to survive: ask for help.

Blood on Borrowed Wings is science fiction noir. A fast-paced original thriller full of twists, fists and feathers. It is set on Nimbus, a future Earth, a world divided, where the powerful and evil dominate the skies…and not only birds have wings.


Now pause to reflect. 10 secs. Then vomit down what you think, ’cause I do need your help. Really!
Thank you.


Thanks for your help so far to:

28 thoughts on “10 Second feedback. Ready. Steady….

  1. The Girl Made of Words 17/01/2015 / 12:26 am

    I really liked it. I felt like you were setting the pace of the novel through this synopsis, and while I am not so into face paced, high adrenaline type reads, the premise really spoke to me. You gave just enough detail to make me want to know more without giving away too much of the plot. Well done.

    • Curlydaz 17/01/2015 / 12:31 am

      Thank you. Let me know if you think I could improve any of it. Or if i can ever help you. Thanks again. I appreciate it. Daz

  2. lindacrow 17/01/2015 / 12:30 am

    What grabbed my attention: “do the worst thing imaginable to survive: ask for help,” and “not only birds have wings.” Distracting to me personally? The name “Theron,” which I immediately connect with Charlize, but I also see “heron” in it, as in “bird.” Nice synopsis!

    • Curlydaz 17/01/2015 / 12:32 am

      Thank you. Theres a bird in your name too. Really appreciate your comment. Helps me immensely. Let me know if i can ever do the same. Cheers. Daz

      • lindacrow 17/01/2015 / 12:32 am

        Get this: i went from Batt to Crow.

  3. thestraggletag 17/01/2015 / 12:34 am

    It sounds really interesting. One suggestion could be to read aloud for tenses. I wasn’t sure whether it should be ditches or ditched. I always find reading aloud helps me pick up the tiny mistakes ( especially a printed page). I like the elements of the different world that you have included in your synopsis. 🙂

  4. Curlydaz 17/01/2015 / 1:20 am

    Both creatures of the dark night. I once had a friend at sixth form College called Charles Dickens, so nothing surprises me anymore. Ha Ha.

  5. The Guardian 17/01/2015 / 5:26 pm

    I would like to recommend a few minor changes to the 2nd paragraph:

    When women start disappearing from the Angelbrawl Arena, Drake is hired to put an end to the menace. At first, he thinks it’s just another job, business as usual. But it turns into something far more sinister and personal when he is abducted along with the beautiful woman he is trying to protect.

    Hope my input is valuable to you. 🙂 🙂

    • Curlydaz 19/01/2015 / 6:52 pm

      Thanks for that. I am going to wait a few more days then pool all of the advice and get something down. I think yours reads a lot better. Thanks again. Really helpful and i appreciate your time.

  6. renardscifi 17/01/2015 / 6:51 pm

    This is a really solid framework! Just needs a little bit of tweaking and pruning, which is inevitable when you’re trying to accomplish the frustrating task of trying to stuff a whole novel into about 300 words. 😛 I *hate* writing synopsis bits. Kudos!

    A few things that jump out at me:

    -I would take every single place where you’ve got “he is”, “it is” etc. and make them contractions. “He’s” and “it’s” will make the reading flow more quickly. Contractions are a great thing to leave out of super-formal writing, but they tend to interrupt the flow in a blurb.

    -I *love* the “On the run, betrayed…” sentence. Really well-crafted, and exactly what you want.

    -The Lowlands Slums. For some reason, this reads awkwardly to me – I don’t think you can have a plural next to a plural for it to work. Either Lowland Slums or Lowlands slum reads better to me.

    The middle paragraphs are great, but I would prune the opening and ending a bit, just dropping some words and rearranging the order of things. For example:

    Instead of: After Drake Theron ditches his wings and military brothers, he turns mercenary to forget a horrific battle where so much more than lives were lost.

    Possibly something like: After the horrific carnage Drake Theron has seen, he’s more than ready to swear off war for good. But there’s not much an ex-soldier can do on Nimbus once they’ve hung up their wings, so Drake ends up doing the only thing he’s ever been good at – fighting.

    And instead of: Blood on Borrowed Wings is science fiction noir. A fast-paced original thriller full of twists, fists and feathers. It is set on Nimbus, a future Earth, a world divided, where the powerful and evil dominate the skies…and not only birds have wings.

    Possibly this: Blood on Borrowed Wings is a fast-paced thrill ride with twists, fists, and feathers. In this gripping sci-fi noir novel, the powerful and evil dominate the skies… and it’s not just the birds that have wings.

    I hope some of this helps! You’ve got a really strong sense of what your novel is about and some great impact words in there, so trust me, you’re already miles ahead. 🙂

    • Curlydaz 18/01/2015 / 2:10 pm

      That is really kind of you to help me so much. I think all of your recommendations improve it immensely. Time is such a special commodity and I humbly thank you for yours. Let me know if i can ever help you. Thanks again. D

      • renardscifi 18/01/2015 / 3:30 pm

        No problem, I’m glad it was helpful. 🙂 As I said, you’ve already got a very good synopsis there! I’ll keep an eye out for the book so I can promote it on my blog and give it a read! 😀

      • Curlydaz 18/01/2015 / 6:08 pm

        That’s really good of you. I will send you a copy in advance of release. Thanks for the offer. D

      • Blood On Borrowed Wings 21/02/2016 / 11:38 am

        It’s been while!
        my book is out there and as you have been so positive and supportive in the past I was wondering if you would like a free copy?
        No strings re reviews or blog posts – just if you want one.
        I can email it to you in form of ebook (for Kindle app) – tablets / Kindle etc or I can send you a word.doc if you prefer.
        Hope you are still enjoying blogging and thank you for all of your help in the past.

        Enjoy your weekend.


  7. Reed Jensen 18/01/2015 / 3:00 am

    Is there a scene where the protagonist is temporarily struck down my Sambuca? He awakens in the morning to find his Limoncello swilling mates have “flown off”?

    • Reed Jensen 18/01/2015 / 3:01 am

      By Sambuca….. damn autocorrect.

    • Curlydaz 18/01/2015 / 2:07 pm

      Ha ha. That would make any hero crumble! He staggered out in the midday sun to discover his supper, friends and dignity had gone. But not in that order!

  8. beekeeper71 18/01/2015 / 6:10 am

    I’m interested to learn about the skies themselves. What, in this future Earth’s atmosphere, grants the ability for people to fly with their wings, or is it the wings themselves? As a fan of SF, I’m always looking for the science.

    • Curlydaz 19/01/2015 / 8:25 am

      You have hit a massive nail on the head. I did not want to give too nuch away about the science elements of the story, and actually in my story there is very little science to explain the whys and wherefores. So do you think it needs overtly explaining or do you think writing about it in a context of ‘it just is’ is ok? (As I dont wanna be too prescriptive or formulaic.)

      • beekeeper71 19/01/2015 / 8:36 am

        Sometimes stories can get bogged down with hard science details so, from the author’s standpoint, it is a judgment call. I think in this case, a reference or two to the reasons behind it should be enough.

        I think that the most important thing for the story is that you, as the author, knows how and why something works. Having that knowledge allows you to form rules for your world. The same applies for magic in fantasy settings. Sure, you can do a lot with magic, but if there are no rules or limitations to this magic, it either won’t seem logical to the reader or will quickly become boring.

        So, I guess what I’m trying to say is only reveal what is necessary to the story, but at the same time, you should know how it works. Knowing what the characters can’t do creates challenges for them.

        I hope this helps.

  9. Joseph Nebus 18/01/2015 / 8:47 pm

    The talk about the wings sounds the most interesting and is what I’d like to know more about. I feel a little burned out on sinister conspiracies, but that’s merely where I happen to be in my reading history right now and doesn’t reflect much about your story one way or another. I’m curious why it’s necessarily specified that it was a ‘beautiful woman’ he was protecting that was abducted; it gives a hint of there being supposed to be attraction between them. That I suppose fits with noir conventions, although it makes me wonder about women who’re just ordinary-looking and have other good traits about them. And it makes me wonder if the story is coming too near the ‘women in refrigerators’ threat as a way of driving the protagonist into action.

    • Curlydaz 18/01/2015 / 9:12 pm

      I really agree with the ‘beautiful’ label. Think I need to find a better word there as it does not do my female character credit (in fact she may jump out of my book and kick my arse!)

      Thanks for your comments.
      Most helpful.


  10. thesarahdoughty 18/01/2015 / 11:59 pm

    I like this. It makes sense, and the title was enough to catch my attention. I find it very interesting, the tag line, it’s almost a warrior’s mantra.

    That said, after reading the synopsis, I’m not entirely sure I understand the blood part of the title. I’m sure upon reading it, it is clear. But that alone is not enough to make me want to skip it.

    I like the name, and what he has to face to survive. And *gasp* even ask for help!

    • Curlydaz 19/01/2015 / 12:28 am

      Thanks for commenting. The blood would make sense later too. I reckon a coupla lil tweaks and I’ll be there. Cheers again for reading. Let me know if you want to read it. Will need all the exposure i can get. D

  11. tiostib 19/01/2015 / 9:11 pm

    You are a story teller. Your story is about a hero and a hero’s journey. Simple enough. Now what is going to make this story so compelling I want to listen to it? Your synopsis is full of cliche’s. Hero has problems. Hero is disillusioned. Hero gets called to save the world. Hero has problems doing this but finally succeeds.

    You can do better than this. Write the back story of your hero. What makes him and his life unique? Why do I want to listen to his story more than all the typical hero fantasies?

    Consider Robert McKee’s excellent book on storytelling “Structure, Styule and Story,” a book about screenwriting but a great guide for novelists.

    Consider John Gresham’s writing process. After developing a general concept for his story and his characters he writes the ending in detail. This gives his mind and creative genius a fixed destination and all he writes must support the ending.

    You’ve got a great creative mind. I believe you will write a wonderful and captivating book!

    • Curlydaz 19/01/2015 / 11:57 pm

      Thanks for taking the time to comment. I take your comments on board about cliches. Whilst I may be guilty of them in my draft of a synopsis, l have made efforts to keep them out of my story, plot and structure.
      My novel is written, had multiple edits and is as ready as I can make it.
      My synopsis however is another matter.
      There are many different schools of thought ( I mean, just read many people’s comments on my blog.)
      Some think it’s fine. Some think it just needs rewording. Others suggest omission of words or inclusion of more information.

      I know it’s down to me to discern exactly what I want to convey about my novel in my synopsis. And the way I do it. Everyone’s advice and insight is helping me hone in on that, and hopefully I will have a better blurb for it.

      Do you have any suggestions on specifically how you think I could improve it?
      Thanks again for your time. Appreciated. D

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