Published By: Alfaraz Laique

Crafting the Perfect Logline for Your Script: Tips and Tricks

You know what they say, writing a script is easy but writing a logline is not. It is quite true since combining your whole script in a single line is not easy at all. However, with a few tips, you can ace it.

For those who don’t know, a logline is a brief, one or two-sentence summary of your script that captures the essence of your story. It’s the hook that piques interest and makes people want to know more.  Read more to know the tips.

What Makes a Good Logline - A good logline is clear, concise, and compelling. It should provide a snapshot of your story's main plot, introduce the protagonist, hint at the conflict, and offer a sense of the stakes. Think of it as your script’s elevator pitch, which means as something you can say in a short ride that leaves the listener curious and excited.

For Writing a Great Logline – It is important to start with the basics and your logline should cover the who, what, and why of your story. For example, in the logline for Jaws, you might say: A small-town sheriff must protect his community from shark terrorizing the local beaches.

Keep It Simple - Here we are talking that you don’t overcomplicate things. Your logline should be easy to understand and free of unnecessary details. Focus on the core elements of your story and avoid mentioning subplots, secondary characters, or backstory. You want to give a clear and straightforward idea of the main plot.

Highlight the Conflict - Conflict is what drives your story and it’s crucial to hint at it in your logline. You should know what challenge or obstacle does your protagonist face and this will give your logline an edge and make it more intriguing. For instance, in The Hunger Games, the logline might be: In a dystopian future, a young girl volunteers to take her sister’s place in a televised competition where only one person can survive.

Show the Stakes – Every story has stakes and it is important to know what’s at risk in your story. The stakes give weight to your conflict and make the audience care about the outcome. Make sure your logline conveys why the protagonist’s goal is crucial.  Using Titanic as an example: A young couple from different social backgrounds fall in love aboard the ill-fated ship, but must fight to survive when it sinks.

Capture the Tone - Your logline should give a sense of the tone or genre of your script. Is it a comedy, thriller, romance, or drama? Choose words that convey the right mood. Specific details make your logline stand out. Avoid vague descriptions and generalities.

Rewrite and Refine - Writing a great logline takes time and multiple drafts. Write down several versions and refine them. Read them out loud to see how they sound. Ask friends or fellow writers for feedback. Keep tweaking until you have a logline that feels just right.

Writing a logline can feel like a daunting task but it’s an essential skill for any screenwriter. A well-crafted logline can open doors and generate interest in your script. With these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to creating a logline that captures the heart of your story and hooks your audience.