Great things come in small packages, right? That’s what our culture is certainly telling us. Attention spans are getting smaller. And our writing reflects that. Nobody has time to read an entire paragraph! Give it to me in one line.

It’s true in writing and it’s true in life. There is so much noise going on around us. So many distractions to take away from what’s important.

It just so happens that this is also the mysterious and horrifying world of the logline. Any unnecessary words will distract from what’s important about the story. A badly written logline could sink a movie before it even gets made. And a life with too much clutter can take away from what’s truly important to you.

Thus begins my logline/life comparison…

(Note: For definition of a logline.)

Power of Deleting

The first time I wrote the logline for my film, it was about half a page. It felt like trying to run straight down a hallway by taking a million turns away from my final destination. There were so many extra words that weren’t needed. I had to find ways to express my meaning in fewer words. Easier said than done.

However, once it’s done, it feels so good. It’s nice and neat. A huge idea tied up into one powerful package.

Of course, our lives aren’t much different. I have a bad habit of wanting too many things out of life. I have too much on my plate always. I set a million goals for myself, most of which I don’t even remember the next day. But just like the logline, all the extra stuff takes away from living a full and meaningful life.

If you lost the main focus of your life, it’s time to start hacking away at all the extra stuff.

Choosing the Perfect Word

If I’m limited to only one line to engage a person in my movie, I have to really think about each word carefully. One word gives a person an impression that maybe isn’t exactly what I was intending. It takes a lot of time and thought. It’s a very tedious process that demands careful consideration.

If I put that much effort into my one sentence, how much more careful should I be in dealing with my one life? There’s never enough time. There’s never going to be. Every choice in each day is like choosing the perfect word for a logline. Each choice adds up to the life you are leading.

After writing my logline, I stop and ask myself “Is this really the movie that I want to tell?” Same with our daily choices. Is this really the life you want to live?

Are your choices in life the perfect words to express the life you want to live? What would you like to delete?



Rachel M Taylor

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Rachel is a writer/director. She loves character driven movies and really good cheese.

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