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View Full Version : How long is a brief synopsis?


Scriptman
05-26-2004, 01:27 AM
I see a lot of management and production companies that allow e-mail queries asking for a brief synopsis.

But what is considered brief? From what I thought, a synopsis is a scene by scene description and can be about 5 to 7 pages long. Is this what they're expecting? Or should it be more brief?

Basically, is a 5 page e-mailed synopsis considered brief or way too much?

Am I making any sense? I mean, if they say brief, I could be as brief as possible. It's just understanding exactly what brief is. :\

jimjimgrande
05-26-2004, 02:13 AM
try one page or less in those situations. Coverage synopses tend to be longer, yes, but that's for them to do. Send them one great page.

marky48
05-26-2004, 08:23 AM
You described a treatment. Send one page or less.

MakingMagic
05-27-2004, 08:54 PM
It's usually brief.

:D

MM

JustinoIV
05-27-2004, 08:58 PM
A synopsis is one page or less.

Scriptman
05-28-2004, 12:49 AM
My other question is:

I have several characters that help my protag achieve his goal. Do I make mention of these characters in my synopsis, or do I keep it geared more towards my protag?

It was one of the reasons why I asked how brief my synopsis should be, because these characters are important to the story and I would like to mention them, but I don't want my synopsis to go on for more than a page. Sometimes a brief synopsis can sound like your protag is the only one in the movie and it sounds impossible for him to get this all done without any additional help from other key characters.

jimjimgrande
05-28-2004, 01:04 AM
your synopsis should have the same tense (present) and voice (yours) as your script.

I'm sensing that you're thinking of your synopsis as a description of your script and of your characters, but it isn't that.

It's just a condensed version of your story. Try writing it in five paragraphs one for the opening, one for the first act, two for the second act and one for the third act/resolution.

CAPITALIZE characters the first time they appear and give two or three word descriptions. You can slip in "quotes" of dialogue or prose from the script if you want, but don't set them off as dialogue and use them sparingly.

Just make it read smooth and quick, be articulate and concise.

If you know all this already, sorry, but it seems to bear repeating.

Scriptman
05-28-2004, 01:18 AM
Thanks, jimjim.

That's the best explanation.

When a production or management company asks for a brief synopsis, sometimes I feel like it's the perfect set up for them to write "PASS" all over my script, because either I didn't give them enough info or they didn't get the gist of my story as a result from how brief it was.