Important Documents
Style Guide

Tense and Voice


As much as possible, synopses should be written in the simple present tense. Use the past and future tenses only when necessary. For example, the past tense may be used to describe backstory events, while the future tense may be used for questions about the future.
Synopses should always be written in the third person. Under no exception may you use the first or second person. As such, do not write commands to the reader.
The passive voice is when a recipient of an action is the grammatical subject of a sentence. Do not use the passive voice unless there is a strong, compelling reason to do so. In the vast majority of sentences, the active voice is both more direct and compelling. However, there are occasions when the passive voice may be better. This is often the case when the doer of the action is either unknown or insignificant, as in the sentences below.

Examples of good passive voice

Similar sentences where the active voice should be used