As if the synopsis wasn’t hard enough, enter the log line

I think the synopsis is finished.

This is based on a visual evaluation more than a content evaluation. It meets the qualification of being one page. I got wordy at the end, I think, so there’s probably room for revision. But, hey, I’ve still got nine days until conference.

Nine days.

Single digit midget!

Okay, before I go any further, is anyone else familiar with the term single digit midget? My dad used to say it all the time and referenced it as an old army phrase. I referred to it constantly–and in fact had it written on my calendar, which I still have–when The Hubs was deployed. I said it, like, twelve times today and no one had any clue what I was talking about. Then we started singing Gloria and all was forgotten.

Which…sounds like two completely unrelated stories, but it’s midweek. I take no responsibility for ongoing shenanigans.

Anyway.

As I explained to my friend Jossie, “As if it’s not hard enough to condense 311 pages of plot into one page, now I’m condensing it into one sentence.”

She looked at me.

I felt much the same way. I mean, I get the premise of the log line. Pitch. Whatever. It’s to get people to want to read your book. Or at least your hastily written synopsis. At any rate, I feel this is easier said than done.

I wrote eight of them at lunch.

Six suck. Two are marginal.

I read several articles online about crafting successful log lines. Formulas and all that. Which reminds me of Algebra and let me tell you, yet another day in my life has passed that I haven’t had to use Algebra. Anyway, formula makes sense: Nathan Bransford suggests character, conflict, obstacle, quest.

I like it.

Unfortunately I’m not a fan of the character-conflict-obstacle-quest that I wrote out. Eight times.

Maybe it’s just the ending I’m not crazy about.

I feel like what it really needs to be is:

Sassy southern gal changes her clothes a lot, flirts with any man in uniform who stands still long enough, and generally gets caught up in the war and Jeb Stuart.

Note: This is not my actual log line. That’s kind of unfortunate because I like it a heck of a lot better than my attempts earlier today. And I wrote that in like, fifteen seconds.

Maybe that’s my problem. Maybe I’m over thinking it too much. Maybe if I just sit down and slap the first thing down on paper that comes to mind, I’ll be golden. It worked in college. I have an impressive GPA that really did nothing for me in The Real World, based on turning in amazingly written first drafts.

And as a back up plan, I will totally use the above version of my log line. Because, really, if you boil out all the seriousness and romance and replace it with sarcasm and snark, that’s what you get.

And it’s my author bio in a nut shell. So there you go.

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4 thoughts on “As if the synopsis wasn’t hard enough, enter the log line

  1. Yay for finishing the synopsis!

    Log lines are hard! I always find it impossible to leave out bits that I consider essential parts of the story to shorten it. Good luck with it!

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