Help:Summaries

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This is a guide to the suggested structure for Coppermind summary articles. Some summary articles may omit one or more of these sections if inadequate information is available. Looking at existing articles to get a sense of a useful structure is always a good idea.

General tips

The chapter summaries are by far the most important part, but the eventual goal is for every book to have every relevant section for each chapter.

Don't use references at all on summary pages.

Spoilers should be for the current book and previous books in the same series only. This means that details revealed later in the book should be used whenever they are relevant.

Intro

All summary pages should start with a statement like the following:

This page contains a chapter by chapter summary of '''''[[name of book]]'''''. We hope this summary will make it easier to find specific areas of the book, as well as providing a quick plot refresher for anyone who doesn't want to take the time to reread the entire book.

This is followed by the following line of code, used to move the table of contents to the right:

<div style="float:right; padding-left:1em">__TOC__</div>

Chapter summaries

The bulk of a summary article will consist of chapter-by-chapter summaries.

Each chapter is laid out as follows:

{{anchor|Chapter 1}}

== Chapter 1 ==
[[File: Chapter-icon.svg|125px|center]]

{{epigraph|
Something wicked this way comes.}}

;Characters

{{columns|
* [[Character A]] (point of view)
* [[Character B]] (point of view)
* [[Character C]]
* [[Character D]] (mentioned only)
}}

;Plot Summary
:''Ten years ago''

'''Character A'''

Bacon ipsum dolor amet occaecat andouille frankfurter.

'''Character B'''

Bacon ipsum dolor amet pariatur sint laborum ham.

*[[bws: link-to-chapter]]
*[[bws: link-to-annotation]]

If any elements are inapplicable to the chapter at hand, they can be omitted.

Anchor

In some cases, the section header used for a chapter will not exactly match the section name that {{book ref}} (or some other template) expects. In this case, an anchor is needed to be able to link sections correctly. Notice that this anchor is above the chapter heading. The anchor is done using an anchor template: {{anchor}} and the parameter should be whatever the template expects the section name to be, usually just "Chapter X" where X is whatever is used in the template to denote that specific chapter (generally the chapter number). Examples of when this is necessary include:

  • When the chapter has both a name and a number (e.g., The Stormlight Archive novels)
    • The Dark One graphic novels are an exception to this, as they are specially handled by {{Dark One lookup}}
    • When chapters are given some other name instead of being numbered, an anchor is also not needed (e.g., The Dark Talent)
  • When chapter numbers repeat in a book (e.g., Mistborn: Secret History)
  • Additionally, when chapter numbers are particularly strange, anchors may be used to make them easier to reference (e.g., The Shattered Lens)

Heading

If a book has parts, each part should be a level two heading with each chapter being a level three heading, as follows:

== Prologue ==
== Part 1 ==
=== Chapter 1 ===
=== Chapter 2 ===
etc.

Otherwise, each chapter is simply a level two heading:

== Chapter 1 ==
== Chapter 2 ==
etc.

Chapter and part names and numbering should be consistent with those given in the book (for an extreme example, see Summary:The Shattered Lens). A more moderate example is Stormlight books, which have a chapter number followed by a name, as follows: Chapter 1: Stormblessed.

Chapter icon

If a book includes chapter icons, each chapter's summary should include the correct icon. This is done as follows:

[[File: Chapter-icon.svg|125px|center]]

This centers the icon and makes it the appropriate size.

Epigraph

For books that have epigraphs, they should be included in an {{epigraph}}. The single parameter is the full text of the epigraph.

Character list

This begins with ;Characters. It should include a list of all the characters, in a bulleted list (using asterisks) within a {{columns}} template. Point of view characters (denoted by (point of view)) appear first, followed by characters featured in the chapter, and lastly characters mentioned (denoted by (mentioned only)). Even a single mention is enough to warrant inclusion in the list. This includes being mentioned in the epigraph. Unnamed characters should only be included if they have a wiki page. Within each category, organize roughly by order of appearance.

This listing should usually use the name of each character's wiki page, the exception being when that page name is a spoiler for the current book. For example, Rlain's name isn't mentioned until Words of Radiance, so the The Way of Kings summary's lists should call him Shen. Even when a character's identity isn't apparent in the current chapter, if it is revealed by the end of the book, it should be listed as the character's actual name, not their pseudonym or role.

These names should be linked each and every time they appear in a characters list. However, character names should still be linked the first time they appear within the actual text of the summary.

Plot summary

If you have previously included a character list, begin with ;Plot Summary. Otherwise, begin the summary with no heading.

If the chapter begins with or includes a time marker, include it as follows:

:''X years ago''

This indents and italicizes the time marker.

If a chapter has multiple point of view characters, each section of the chapter with a new point of view should be indicated like so:

'''Character's given name'''

This results in a bolded character name. Be sure to put empty lines between this name and the paragraphs above and below it, in order for it to show up on its own line. This shouldn't be linked. Chapters with only one point of view character can omit this, and books with only one point of view character for the entire book should omit this.

The summary of the plot should cover the events of the entire chapter. Check other summary pages for examples of how detailed these summaries should be.

Characters whose "real" name (the one used to head their wiki page) isn't used in the chapter should typically be called by their real name but it should be noted what the book calls them. Good examples are Ahu as Jezrien and Nale as Darkness. Again, this is only if the real name isn't a spoiler.

Annotations and Publicly Available Chapters

If the text of the chapter is avaliable on Brandon's website, link to it like so:

*[[bws: link-to-page|Chapter 1]]

Where "link-to-page" is the part after https://brandonsanderson.com/, and "Chapter 1" is replaced by the correct chapter numbering.

If an annotation exists for the chapter, it should be linked beneath the plot summary as such:

*[[bws: link-to-page|Chapter 1 Annotation]]

Annotations done on reddit should be linked to the arcanum entry instead of to reddit, while annotations done on Brandon's website should link to his website. The markup for linking to arcanum is as follows:

*[[wob:1111|Chapter 1 Annotation]]

Here, the number after wob: is the number after #e in the url.

Outro

A summary page should end with the following elements, under == Notes ==:

  • {{summaries}}, with the parameter correctly indicating article status
  • A series template such as {{Stormlight}}
  • The correct series category and numbering, such as [[Category: Stormlight Archive|+1]] or [[Category: Stormlight Archive|+sa2.5]]