Sunday, January 22, 2012


I recently updated my article on logline construction called "I Wrote a 120 Page Script but Can't Write a Logline."

Along with additional information and analysis of eight loglines, I've also added 300 loglines (from produced screenplays) to use for study or as examples and templates.

The article is in PDF form and free to read or download HERE.

For the first time, I've enabled the "comments" section of this blog. Feel free to leave your thoughts or questions on loglines.


At 3:06 PM, Anonymous Chakala said...

I've used this for years. Thanks!

At 8:11 AM, Blogger Momo said...

Timely article. I'm currently struggling with my logline so I'm looking forward to reading this.

At 2:32 PM, Blogger David W. Clary said...

PDF means I can put in on my Kindle. Win!

At 7:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

From Baby Bones

Thanks a lot. I've been following your blog for years, and the logline help is great.

At 10:40 PM, Blogger Elizabeth Rockett said...

I've used this article for several years and every time I write a new one I pulled it out. But guess what? I just wrote a new logline and a 2-page synopsis last week and now this article is so ingrained in my head, I didn't use it. Oh, But I will use it to perfect it when the script is done. This is the best article I've ever read on loglines and re-read it. It's printed in my "important info" folder.

At 3:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just wanted to say thank you - I have just found your article about the story in a box - this resonated with me - a story hidden away in a box - revealed by opening the smallest box. A huge help. Thanks. Gail. UK

At 1:58 AM, Blogger Unintentional Skeptic said...

This is an absolutely great article but in the produced logline examples you give at the end, I can't help but notice that many of them violate the rules you lay out. I'd be interested in your take on that.

At 7:07 AM, Blogger Christopher Lockhart said...

Thanks, Unintentional Skeptic.

In regards to your question, it would be great if you could provide some examples.

But, for instance, in the case of biopics - that span the lifetime of a character (instead of concentrating on a single event in the character's life) - a different tact might be taken - given the broad spectrum of the story.

In the article, I suggest using the word "struggle" to connote the overarching dramatic conflict, but many of the examples use a synonym. The alternative choice still suggests the struggle.

The examples provided were to show the various ways loglines could be put together. You'll note in the article, I use phrases like "you might write the logline like this" when demonstrating examples. "Might" is used because there are many ways to write a logline.

I would point out that this article is not about "rules." I don't believe in rules. I only believe in doing what works. This article was written based on my experience reading and writing tens of thousands of loglines. It's a method that I observed was (and still is) most commonly used throughout the industry.

If you find an alternative route to the logline that is equally or more effective, then I'd encourage its use.

At 9:37 PM, Blogger Kangas said...

That is a pretty freakin' great article on doing loglines, something I've traditionally sucked at.

But PS, if you wrote a 120 page script, you should probably knock it down to 105 and then look for a log line. :)

At 8:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Been writing scripts for a living for 23 years, but there's always room to learn more. Your thoughts and the way you express them are great, solid info. Thanks.


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