Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Logline Critique Round One #27

TITLE: The Lonely Dark
GENRE: Fantasy

A stubborn woman who can speak to the elements must flee for her life when other Speakers attempt to take her powers. Speakers of the Shadow element are going insane, and stealing her power might cure them. On the run, she must find another solution before she--or anyone else--gets killed in the name of the public good.


  1. I think leaving the stubborn woman nameless makes it harder for me to identify with her. The first and second sentences go over some of the same ground. Perhaps you could begin with a version of the second sentence, and then tell us about your heroine and her powers. I'm not sure we have to know that she is stubborn - nobody wants to die for the public good.

  2. I'm confused by this. First that elements speak. I understand someone being able to interpret, understand, control, or channel the elements, but you're personifying them. Granted, it's fantasy and the rule bend in that genre. It's your story, I'm curious how someone speaks to water.

    So the as of yet unnamed woman speaks to all elements, but speakers of just one are going insane, they can somehow steal her power, and her life is at risk (I assume to get her power). And other people are dying for some reason. That's better, now I have the antagonist, conflict, what's at risk, and consequences. I like that.

    I'd look at that first line. It's nice that she's stubborn, but it doesn't add much to the overall description for me. That she speaks to multiple elements, to me means she's talented. Maybe reclusive, powerful, determined. On the whole, does it matter? Now, she's desperate.

    Can you just leave off the first line and put her name in place of "she"? Short, sweet, less confusing. Shadow Element sounds ominous.

  3. It sounds like this woman finds out the Speakers want to steal her power to cure themselves and decides she has to get away from them so she can find them another cure so they will leave her alone (this is her goal, I think). If so, you need to make this clear and then you need to clarify why it will be difficult for her to find another cure for their insanity.

    Good luck!

  4. I'd add the woman's name. Also maybe just say "...Speakers [of the Shadow] attempt to take her powers to cure their insanity" since the middle sentence felt clunky to me.

  5. You should name the main character and also explain why it's in the public good to cure insane Speakers of the Shadow at her expense. I can't tell from the logline if the Speakers of the Shadow are bad guys secretly hunting her down or the legit leadership of this community who see nothing wrong with human sacrifice to cure themselves.

  6. The idea of this is solid. I can see the stakes--her life versus other people's sanity--and her goal to find another solution. My main concern is that it's a little wordy and a little bland. You could trim the first two sentences and combine them into one. Then look for some punchier word choices to add voice. You have the basics; you just need to make it sparkle.

  7. I don't mind the idea that she "speaks" to the elements. (I use that same term in one of my fantasy novels.) I like the fact that your antagonists are really just desperate to save themselves from insanity, but I felt like you missed a good opportunity to play up the moral dilemma this has to cause for your MC.