Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Logline Critique Round Two #22

TITLE: The Sword and the Skull
GENRE: Epic Fantasy

Ryn Ruscroft has one chance to rescue the witch he loves and prevent an apocalyptic war – he must wield a sentient sword that accepts no master. But this doomsday weapon’s thirst for victory threatens to leave her dead and Ryn guilty of mass murder.


  1. I think this is a good logline. The stakes are clear and we've got a clear idea what we're getting into. My only beef is about voice. Maybe it's just me, but alliterative names make me think of dry wit and Terry Pratchett/ Piers Anthony style voice. if that's accurate then don't worry about it, but if your voice is less flip or tongue-in-cheek, maybe cut Ryn's last name (which you don't need anyway). Then again, maybe it's just me. :) Nice work.

  2. I think you list your stakes twice (rescue the witch/leave her dead; prevent war/mass murder). I would choose one or the other and streamline :)

  3. I read this a few times to figure out who "her" was in the last line. It used to be that witches could be male or female, even though current usage seems to use wizard/witch to show gender. I read over the witch in the first line entirely because the apocalyptic war kind of takes over the sentence. I wondered one thing. Why is it that Ryn, in particular, has to use the sentient sword? Or why does he get the chance? Not that there's room for more in a logline.

  4. I also had to re-read a couple times to get who "her" was. I also agree that there seems to be a link missing. Why is the sword connected to Ryn at all? Or maybe, why does the sword need to be wielded to stop a war?

    Maybe the problem is that you have two plots in here. The "rescuing the princess" plot and the "preventing war" plot. Pick one and focus on it, dependent on your genre. If it's not romance, I'd hone in on the war part.

  5. I think reworking the 2nd line is all you need here. You don't need to describe the weapon more than once, but do convey Ryn's plan to "master" it and what will happen if he fails. It reminds me of the ring in Lord of the Rings. Nice work.
    Write On!

  6. The first sentence is a little confusing. I think you're trying to say that, in order to rescue the witch and prevent the war, he must use a sword that is difficult to control. If so, this needs to be clarified. Also, having two goals waters down his focus. His real goal is probably the witch and the war thing is more likely something he must avoid while rescuing her (which makes it an obstacle).

    Good luck!