Book Review: Finding the Core of Your Story

FindingCoreStoryFinalFinding the Core of Your Story by Jordan Smith

Rating: 10/10

Are you a writer? If you are, stop reading this and go buy a copy of this book, I will wait for you to get back.

Welcome back. You just made one of the best choices a writer can make. This book should be on the shelf of every one who is, or who wants to be, an author of any kind.

Ok, I can hear you now telling me to stop raving and get reviewing. You want to know what this amazing book is all about? Just look at the tagline: “How to strengthen and sell your story in one essential sentence”.

The word for the day is “Logline”. Once you know what a logline is, you will fall in love with it. Here is the synopsis from the author:

What’s your story about?
It’s the most frightening question in the world if all you have is a blank stare. But what if you had an attention-grabbing answer that left your audience wanting more? It’s not only possible, it’s simple if you have the right tools.
Story consultant and author Jordan Smith has helped countless storytellers strengthen and pitch their stories. His tool of choice is the logline, a technique for selling screenplays that is little known outside of Hollywood. Jordan has adapted this powerful tool and made it accessible to all storytellers.

Not only is a logline useful for answering that frightening question, it’s also handy for keeping your story on track. If you don’t know the core of your story, you run the risk of meandering it into places where it doesn’t belong. With these techniques, you can solve story problems early before they cause you trouble.

This book is written in such a fun and entertaining way, I hardly noticed I was learning something. Be assured though, I learned a very valuable lesson. After reading this book I will now make writing a logline for all my plots a must.

Jordan Smith gives clear, step by step instructions on how to write a logline, and along they way tells you why they are important. He also gives plenty of examples of loglines so you can see how they are used.

Now, I have only read this book once and I finished it last night, so bare with me for a moment. A couple of posts ago I was talking about a new story I was writing and I wrote a logline for it.

After a chance encounter with lady luck and a courageous blond, an unlucky gambler gets involved in a police investigation to take down a greedy philanthropist.

Does it sound like an interesting story? Does the logline wet your appetite for this story? Now if my story can just live up to the logline I may have something here. And that brings me to the second, and what I feel is the most important use of a logline. By having a logline based on a plot outline you can use it to make sure your story stays on track. So if I feel I NEED to tell about the childhood of the detective, I look to the logline and see if that storyline progresses the logline story or distracts.

If the idea of loglines sounds at all interesting, trust me when I say, read the book because Jordan can tell you about them even better than I can.

Until next time…

UPDATE: http://fixmystory.com/ Website of Author Jordan Smith, go check it out.

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6 thoughts on “Book Review: Finding the Core of Your Story

  1. I already have a logline for my book but the book you reviewed does sound interesting. Thanks so much!

    Your logline sounds interesting and makes me curious to read more.

    Writing a logline is one of the most important tasks a writer does. It is excruciatingly hard! I mean, how do you boil down your plot to one or two sentences? 😀

  2. It’s a pity amazon.ca doesn’t have this available in paperback – I’m one of those people who needs to be able to dog-ear and highlight when she’s reading for reference purposes. Still, it may well go on the list for the next time I have a bulk order to make from the American site. Thanks for sharing!

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