Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Logline Critique Round One #14

TITLE: Traitor Knight
GENRE: Adult Fantasy

A knight mantled in secrets and reviled by the very people he’s sworn defend must salvage the shreds of his honor and defend the kingdom from both a ravening dragon and a scheming traitor, with the aid of a feisty damsel-in-distress who’s not at all certain he can be trusted.


  1. I think "to" was left out before "defend." I don't know "ravening" - does the author mean "ravaging?"

    But it does sound interesting.

  2. I think it sounds better if you begin with "With the help of a feisty damsel in distress, ..." I'd strike "who's not at all sure he can be trusted." I'd also scale back the wordiness: strike "very", "ravening (sic)". In other words, take out the superfluous adjectives.

    It sounds interesting.

    1. Totally agree with Milhaud (though leave ravening/ravaging in there). This is a great idea, flipping the shining knight story on its head.

  3. I'm assuming this is a comic melodrama spoofing all of these fantasy tropes. If that's correct, perhaps the genre should be 'humorous fantasy' or something like that? On the other hand, if the novel isn't really a spoof, I'd suggest rethinking the approach here, because the playful use of the tropes and clichés is fun, but it also gives the impression that it's a really funny book.

    In any case, aside from the missing 'to' and the 'ravening' issue that have already been pointed out (and as long as the book is as funny as this implies), I think this has the elements of an effective logline.

  4. Well, my first question is why? Why does he need to fight the dragon and traitor and why does the damsel need to help him? You've established that this is probably going to be difficult, but you haven't established why he can't just say, "sod it" and walk away.

    Good luck!

  5. This feels a little wordy. I think it'd be much stronger if you can clean it up and smooth it out a bit.

  6. Ravening works for me: it means living by preying on other animals especially by catching living prey; "a predatory bird"; "the rapacious wolf"; "raptorial birds"; "ravening wolves"... But at some point we're writing to an audience, and I'm hearing that this word doesn't work for an awful lot of people. Replacing it seems like a good idea.

  7. Is this multiple point of view? This phrase "with the aid of a feisty damsel-in-distress who’s not at all certain he can be trusted." only works if the damsel in distress is a view point character. The knight can't get inside her head to know who she trusts, and neither can the reader.