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Screenwriting Tips: How to Write a Logline
by Eguaogie Eghosa Dec 19, 2021 Views (373)
A good logline can entice Hollywood to read your script by selling your movie idea, whereas a terrible logline can turn off potential script readers by making even the most exciting premise appear monotonous. Here's all you need to know about writing the best logline possible.

What's a Logline?
A one-sentence summary or description of a film is known as a logline. The key parts of your screenplay—the main character, premise, primary conflict, antagonist—are condensed into a clear, short teaser in loglines. The idea is to create a logline that entices the listener to continue reading the script.

A Logline's 4 Main Components
While there is an opportunity for creativity when creating a logline, a good logline will always have the following four characteristics: protagonist, inciting incident, protagonist's goal, and central conflict.

Your logline does not have to be read in this specific sequence. You may, for example, discuss the core conflict before describing your protagonist's aim, or place your inciting incident near the end of your logline. These four components should be clearly defined, regardless of how your logline is structured.

A Standard Logline Has How Many Words?
Loglines should only be one sentence long, according to industry standards. Loglines are sometimes limited to 30 words by screenwriting experts. However, especially if it's a sophisticated picture, a good logline can be as short as a handful of sentences.

Three Points to Consider When Crafting a Logline
Writing an excellent logline is a skill unto itself. Spend some time practising several versions of your logline, bearing in mind the following suggestions:

1. Lay forth the plot (but not the finish!) clearly and concisely
A strong logline gives forth the dramatic plot of a screenplay clearly and briefly, hooking the reader and compelling them to read the full script. As a result, the finale is never revealed in a logline.

2. Make your language dynamic and visual
Loglines that are effective use active language to express the film's visual possibilities. In a logline, words like "struggles," "journeys," and "fights" are far more engaging than "learns," "wonders," or "comes to learn."

3. Identify the premise's irony
The irony is a key component of the best loglines. The reader is drawn in by irony, which signals that we are about to go on an unusual and unexpected journey. The logline for Erin Brockovich, for example, has a feeling of irony between who the protagonist is and her goal: "An unemployed single mother finds a job as a legal assistant so that she may take down a Californian power corporation that is poisoning a city's water supply." The tale (and logline) would be less compelling if Erin Brockovich was a successful attorney instead of an unemployed single mother.

In 4 Easy Steps, Learn How to Write a Fantastic Logline
Even if no one sees your logline, it's a good exercise for distilling your story's essential concepts into the clearest and most basic form possible. Try developing a tale logline and using it as a compass for the rest of the writing and editing process.

1. Find the main character
List all of your primary character's biographical and physical characteristics, then choose the strongest adjective and proper noun combination that best describes them. "Happy school teacher," "elitist funeral director," and "depressed cop" are just a few examples of good pairings for your protagonist description.

2. Describe the event that prompted you to write this article
The jolt from the blue that starts your story is the inciting occurrence. The adventure or catalyst that sets the story off. What is the event that completely devastates your protagonist's life now that you know who he or she is? 

3. Your protagonist's objective should be highlighted
The main driving force behind the rest of the action is the hero's aim. With a few fast lines in the logline, describe what the hero wants or needs. When obstacles stand in the way of the character's aims, this aligns the reader with the character's goals and provides a sense of investment and empathy. Goals can range from assassinating a nemesis to locating a character's birth father or halting the zombie apocalypse.

4. Make the fundamental struggle engrossing
Make a list of potential roadblocks to your character's success. People, ideologies, and legitimate physical obstacles can all be opposing forces. Is it going to be tough for your character's quest because there's a storm outside? Choose the conflict with the largest stakes, but make sure it fits your plot.

Three Different Ways You Can Use Your Logline
A fantastic logline can help move your career forward, not simply as a phrase in the business or as a phase in the screenwriting process. Here are three things you can do with your logline now that you've finished it:

1. Become more noticeable
Loglines are frequently required for participation in competitions or film festivals, which provide aspiring screenwriters with the opportunity to pitch their work to a room full of development executives or producers. In a sea of entries, a superb logline can help you stand out.

2. Your pitch should be flawless
A logline can help you construct an interesting "soft pitch," which is how you'll convey your screenplay idea in an informal environment like a cocktail party, in addition to assisting you during the writing process. Delivering a short, creative logline indicates ingenuity and confidence, and may give you the opportunity for a more formal pitch.

3. Your script concept should be sold
A compelling logline is one of the most effective techniques for drafting a query letter that entices busy producers, agents, or managers to read your screenplay while pitching it around Los Angeles or New York. A logline can be used by producers to get a studio, investor, or other buyers to consider a script.

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