How To Write A Synopsis That Can Sell Your Screenplay

How To Write A Synopsis That can Sell Your Screenplay
Photo Credit: African Arguments

Read 20 Screenwriting Terms You Must Know

So we have discussed the general terms of screenplay. By now, it is assumed that you have at least a basic knowledge of how to write a screenplay. But it doesn’t end there, right? You have to sell your screenplay otherwise what’s the point of writing in the first place? Writing a synopsis of your screenplay is the answer.

Synopsis is one of the effective ways of selling your screenplay to a producer. A synopsis is the summary of your story. It is brief and covers all three acts of your screenplay – beginning. middle and end.

In Nollywood, it is not always easy to find a producer let alone selling your screenplay. Therefore any opportunity of coming across a producer counts greatly. You must always be ready.  And writing a perfect synopsis makes you ready to face a producer. Here are some tips to write the perfect synopsis:

1. Limit your synopsis to a page

Producers are generally impatient to read a screenplay. One way of attracting their attention is a brief synopsis. In Hollywood, the ideal synopsis is between one to three pages. In Nollywood, it is half to one page. E get why. We shall discuss it later.

2. Start your synopsis with a logline

If a synopsis is brief, a logline is briefer. A logline is a one-sentence summary of a movie, TV program or a book. It is what is written about a movie in a movie list when you go to a cinema. Or what is written about a movie on the cover of a DVD. Apart from attracting the attention of a producer, a logline can guide you as you write.

3. Include important events, actions or conflict

Very important. We all love actions and conflicts in a story. In other words, make sure your synopsis contains critical actions and conflicts in your story.

4. Write a coherent synopsis

Meaning it must make sense. Each paragraph must flow into another coherently. This is the basic secret of a great synopsis.

5. End your synopsis with a suspense

In Hollywood, it always advised to write a synopsis that covers your entire screenplay. It is not always the case in Nollywood. Remember you want a producer to buy your screenplay. Do not write everything. Instead create a suspense at the end that will force your producer to want to read the entire screenplay. This is why you should limit your synopsis to half or full page.

6. Proofread to remove typographical or grammatical errors

No producer will take you seriously if your synopsis is full of typos or grammatical blunders. It is normal for your first draft to have errors. Proofreading the draft is very important. You can do it yourself or find someone who is good in writing to do it for you.

These are tips you can apply as you write the synopsis of your story. We hope you find them helpful. If you know more useful tips that have worked for you, let us know in the comment section.


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