SYNOPSESComplications Ensue
Complications Ensue:
The Crafty Game, TV, and Screenwriting Blog

Baby Name Voyager graphs baby name frequency by decade.

Social Security Administration: Most popular names by year.

Name Trends: Uniquely popular names by year.

Reverse Dictionary Search: "What's that word that means....?"

Facebook Name Trees Match first names with last names.


April 2004

May 2004

June 2004

July 2004

August 2004

September 2004

October 2004

November 2004

December 2004

January 2005

February 2005

March 2005

April 2005

May 2005

June 2005

July 2005

August 2005

September 2005

October 2005

November 2005

December 2005

January 2006

February 2006

March 2006

April 2006

May 2006

June 2006

July 2006

August 2006

September 2006

October 2006

November 2006

December 2006

January 2007

February 2007

March 2007

April 2007

May 2007

June 2007

July 2007

August 2007

September 2007

October 2007

November 2007

December 2007

January 2008

February 2008

March 2008

April 2008

May 2008

June 2008

July 2008

August 2008

September 2008

October 2008

November 2008

December 2008

January 2009

February 2009

March 2009

April 2009

May 2009

June 2009

July 2009

August 2009

September 2009

October 2009

November 2009

December 2009

January 2010

February 2010

March 2010

April 2010

May 2010

June 2010

July 2010

August 2010

September 2010

October 2010

November 2010

December 2010

January 2011

February 2011

March 2011

April 2011

May 2011

June 2011

July 2011

August 2011

September 2011

October 2011

November 2011

December 2011

January 2012

February 2012

March 2012

April 2012

May 2012

June 2012

July 2012

August 2012

September 2012

October 2012

November 2012

December 2012

January 2013

February 2013

March 2013

April 2013

May 2013

June 2013

July 2013

August 2013

September 2013

October 2013

November 2013

December 2013

January 2014

February 2014

March 2014

April 2014

May 2014

June 2014

July 2014

August 2014

September 2014

October 2014

November 2014

December 2014

January 2015

February 2015

March 2015

April 2015


Sunday, November 20, 2005

There are bad lengths for screen stories and good ones. I find I can't get a five page story without first writing a ten page beat sheet and boiling it down. A page and a half is easy. Three pages (750) words is even harder than 5 pages. I have to throw out actual story and replace it with something simpler.

When I write a synopsis, my goal is to tell a story. Not necessarily the same story as in the movie. It's more the story that the movie would be if it were that length of story. I take out stuff that's too complicated for the length. Sometimes I replace it with simpler stuff that's not in the movie. If they can't be bothered to read the screenplay...

I find the best way to write a synopsis is to reread the screenplay once and then retell the story off the top of my head. I try not to refer to the screenplay unless I'm stuck and can't remember. (That's a warning sign that the story may not be flowing properly, by the way.)

A synopsis that's a precise reconstruction of the screenplay story is almost always dull to read. Don't write a real synopsis. Tell the story.


The synopsis is definitely harder to write than the script, no matter what the length. I think of the synopsis as "the story of the story," which helps me let go of my dependence on the details.

By Blogger Melanie, at 11:38 AM  

What's really hard to get over to a lot of people, some of whom ought to know better, is just how thoroughly imagined a story has to be before you can synopsise it.

They want the idea in all its essentials in a couple of pages because that's easiest for them to engage with and work from... for me a synopsis or an outline or a treatment is something I arrive at after a helluva lot of trying-out of different ideas. Yet they act as if two pages of story equals two pages of effort, all first-thoughts and no big thing.

By Blogger Stephen Gallagher, at 12:07 PM  

Post a Comment

Back to Complications Ensue main blog page.

This page is powered by Blogger.