PDA

View Full Version : Logline grammar



bluejester12
09-16-2006, 04:03 AM
A depressed DEA agent must unravel the connection among a mysterious childhood acquaintance, a young crime lord and himself before the other two destroy the life he's struggled to build.

I think among (amongst) is grammatically correct since there's three people, but it doesn't seem right. Could I get away with "between?"

alleycat
09-16-2006, 04:25 AM
My non-expert take . . .

I think I would use "between". Among just doesn't sound right.

I might also make it a "hidden (mysterious?) connection" and add a comma after both "crime lord" and "himself". Just a thought.

Jamesaritchie
09-16-2006, 06:04 AM
With current usage, there really is no difference between the two words, but if you want to stick to technicalities, you should probably use "amongst."

The only real diffrence is that "among" is usually followed by a singular collective noun, so you're right, "amongst" is correct.

Although "between" is sometimes used this way, it isn't correct. "Between" introduces two items, not three. Between the devil and the deep blue sea, between hay and grass, between you and me, etc. You can't be between three things, and you can't divide something between more than two things.

Silver King
09-16-2006, 07:01 AM
Just a suggestion based on the line you've presented:

"A depressed DEA agent finds himself between a mysterious childhood acquaintance and a young crime lord, and must unravel the connection before the other two destroy the life he's struggled to build."

wordmonkey
09-17-2006, 10:31 PM
Just a suggestion based on the line you've presented:

"A depressed DEA agent finds himself between a mysterious childhood acquaintance and a young crime lord, and must unravel the connection before the other two destroy the life he's struggled to build."

OK, while this version is better than the original, to me it's still all very passive. A log line is there to hook a reader (editor, agent, producer or publisher) and this doesn't really grab me.

"Depressed"? Clinically or is he just got the Monday Morning Blues? As it is, it makes me think it's more the later, because the rest is kinda passive.

DEA Agent (insert name here) finds himself caught in a maelstrom that could destroy everything in his life he's struggling to maintain. On one side, a mysterious friend reemerges from a childhood (insert name here) would rather forget. On the otherside, a young crime-lord intent on make a reputation for himself whatever the cost. Now (insert name here) faces the fight of his life, for his life.

OK, now mine is longer, and it is maybe a little too dramatic, but that at least makes me more interested. I moved everything to the present tense to add some dynamism. The last sentence adds chunk of imperative momentum.

I also changed "acquaintance" to "friend." Let's be honest, if you think back to your childhood, you had friends, the mean kids and other kids you don't really remember - you have work-place acquaintances. Plus this makes it more personal. The childhood he'd rather forget might be completely wrong for the piece (obviously I haven't read it) but it again makes for a more personal hook and investment (what's the backstory here?). I basically upped the ante on everything.

Feel free to ignore any and all of the above.