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Erin Julius,
Editor, Branch Out

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Write Your Own Logline

 

Write Your Own Logline


By Hallie Jackson, Former School-Age and Teen Services Outreach Coordinator


Every good story starts with an idea. A hook that draws you in. We read them on book covers and movie posters, but have you ever thought about creating your own? Maybe it would be helpful to have a succinct way to introduce yourself when meeting new people. Or maybe you want to tell friends about that amazing book you just read or movie you just saw!

Once you know what elements you need, creating your own logline is easy, for whatever you’d like to share! Here’s what to include:

  • A protagonist or main character: It’s a good idea to avoid using their name if you can but use a few words to describe them. The more visually descriptive you are, the better! Remember: nobody knows this character, but you and your audience need a reason to identify with them.
  • An inciting incident: all stories start somewhere — what happened to make this story begin? This is usually some kind of conflict or change in the main character’s life.
  • A goal for the protagonist: What does your main character want in this story? All characters want more than one thing, of course, but you should let your protagonist be single minded here.
  • A central conflict: What is keeping your main character from getting what they want? This could be another character or a specific circumstance. Try not to get caught up in nuance. Just focus on describing the main issue in your character’s life when your story takes place.

That’s it! A few basic elements, and you’ve got a beginning. Here are some tips to keep in mind while you create your logline:

  • Keep it short! 30 words or less is perfect.
  • Be brief! Tell us enough to pique our interest but not enough to kill our curiosity.
  • If you don’t have a story of your own, try creating a logline for a book or a movie that you like!
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