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WRITING A SYNOPSIS THAT GETS RESULTS

The ability to write a compelling summary of your project can make the difference between a prospective agent, director or producer inviting you to submit your entire manuscript or screenplay or them placing it in the trash. So it’s important to hook the reader on the premise from the very beginning. So how do you write a compelling synopsis?

The best way to do this is by first typing your title, genre and logline. A logline is typically a one-sentence description of the premise of your film, TV show or web series. It helps when writing a logline if you can include irony.

Here are some examples of loglines from produced films that include irony:

Logline: The story of a schizophrenic genius. His mind was both his greatest asset and his greatest enemy. A Beautiful Mind

Logline: A top narcotics cop turns out to be the biggest crook of all. Training Day

Logline: The fate of the world rests in the hands of the smallest and meekest of creatures. The Lord of the Rings

Your synopsis follows, and should be written entirely in present tense action. No dialogue unless one of your characters has a catch phrase. For example: “Show me the money!”

Remember, a synopsis is a beat-by-beat description of what happens in your story. Include character names and descriptions. Be as detailed as possible. For example, instead of writing “gun” write “Glock.” This will give you what everyone in Hollywood is looking for when considering a screenplay writer: a unique voice.

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