Start Fast, End Big

Long believes the lessons embedded in effective movie trailers can be helpful to anyone interested in telling a good story. "The most important thing is that you have to hook people immediately whether it's a great piece of dialogue between characters, an unexpected jolt of some kind or a wonderful piece of music," he says. "Then, you need to escalate. If it's a comedy you make it funnier as it goes along. If it's horror you have to make things get creepier and creepier. Finally you have to have a great way to end the piece. The way peoples brains are wired, first we remember how something ends, and then we remember how it begins."