The storyline is a single sentence that summarizes your story. If you write a great storyline, your editor will instantly get what you story’s about. She’ll be able to explain that storyline to the publishing committee and they’ll get it too. Ditto with the sales team, the buyers for the bookstore chains, the staff in bookstores, and ultimately the readers.
I devote a lot of space in my book to teaching exactly how to write a strong storyline that instantly communcates the gist of the story. You want it less than 25 words and you want to focus on one or two characters. And you want to elimiate absolutely every ounce of excess weight.
The storyline for my first novel TRANSGRESSION is only 11 words.
“A physicist travels back in time to kill the apostle Paul.”
You either like that concept or you don’t. It doesn’t matter. All that matters is that I can communicate my storyline to you in 5 seconds whether you like it or not. A great storyline separates the sheep from the goats–the potential buyers from the nay-sayers.
The book Randy is referring to is Writing Fiction For Dummies which will be releasing December 2, 2009.