Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Logline Critique Round One #10

TITLE: The Guardian of Sudner
GENRE: Middle Grade Fantasy

Fourteen year old Jaden loves academics and freezes up in battles. With his father the nations military hero, Jaden feels like a disappointment to everyone. His fears are confirmed when his father gets captured by the fierce Wargal race while Jaden cowers in the hollow of a tree. In a quest to redeem himself and rescue his father, Jaden discovers he is much more valuable than he ever imagined.


  1. You need to combine the first two sentences into one clear description of his issues. The goal is clear after that although I think we need some obvious obstacles for him to overcome (actual ones, not emotional ones!)

    Good luck!

  2. how is he valuable? Why is that of issue as he tries to redeem himself, and his cowardice?

  3. There's too much setup here. You can say he needs to redeem himself after his cowardice allows his father to be captured. And "he is more valuable than he ever imagined" seems too vague. Is he valuable to himself, his father, the Wargal race? Does the value relate to some ability or inherent strength of his or is this just about his self-esteem?

  4. The important info in this can be condensed into just a sentence or two. Just set up the contrast between Jaden and his father. "Nerdy Jaden Whatever feels like a disappointment to his father, a military hero." (Or similar.)

    Don't say he "cowers." That quite clearly implies he's a coward and that's quite a different thing than being fearful. Everyone with sense would be scared of something dangerous, some mare affected by it than others. A coward would run away and do nothing.

    You don't need commonplace details like "hollow of a tree."

    "Redeem himself" is implied and cliche besides. Also, "discovers he is..." isn't stakes or a conflict. Set up what he's going to face and the consequence if he fails.

  5. A good premise, I think it could just use cleaning up a little. I don't think it's important where Jaden cowered, so you can exclude that part. "Freezes up in battles" sounds a little off, maybe you can word it differently?

  6. Glad to see a fellow MG *logliner*!
    It sounds like your story has a lot of action. What wasn't clear to me from the logline was the real emotion underlying Jaden's quest. Has his father told Jaden he's a disappointment? Or does Jaden just feel that way? IMO it changes the dynamic of his redemption.

  7. A goood start. Wendy brings up some good points. See what you can do to make Jaden less cowering and more like a hero we want to cheer for.