Thursday, November 19, 2015

OTB Logline Critique #3

TITLE: Tarot Traders
GENRE: YA - Urban Fantasy

Toria will die on her next birthday if her tarot cards are stolen. Her mentor is missing, and Toria doesn’t have enough money to hide forever. Conspiring with herself in a parallel time line, she must evade a tarot thief while pulling off the biggest heist of all her lives.


  1. The wording of this is a little out of order. You need to incite the threat from the antagonist before you tell us the consequences and obstacles. You should also be a little more specific about what she has to do to win (heist is a little vague).

    Good luck!

  2. While I am intrigued by the concept of someone whose life is linked to their tarot deck, this felt a little cluttered to me. There are a lot of ideas here--the life link to cards, missing mentor, the protagonist being a thief, parallel time lines--and all of them are interesting, but as is, they get in each others way for my attention.

    I also noticed the sentences all had a similar structure which made them sound the same. Perhaps vary this to create a more dynamic rhythm.

  3. I agree that the concept here is intriguing, but this feels rather disconnected to me. The fact that her mentor is missing doesn't seem to tie into the rest of it, for example, and as Holly said, the sequence of things feels off. Try putting the elements -- character, goal, conflict, stakes -- into the basic formula to get them in a logical order. And for a contest in which you have a higher word allowance for your logline, you could probably add a couple of personal details about Toria to make her even more sympathetic.

  4. My question is why does she have to die? How are the tarot cards linked to the MC? Do they contain the MC's life force? Who is after her? Who wants to steal the cards? What is the role of the mentor here? To give her money? There are so many hole sin this query, I am not sure what really happens.
    However, I like the last sentence, "Conspiring with herself in a parallel time line, she must evade a tarot thief while pulling off the biggest heist of all her lives." I think you should start with this. The fact that she has to face herself in a parallel time line is really neat. This is your hook and I'm intrigued.

  5. I agree with others that the concept of parallel time lines and multiple selves is attention getting but overall, the pitch feels a bit disjointed. Your first line makes me pause, since I can't figure out how a stolen deck of tarot card would lead to her death. Although that's part of your plot, I think you could withhold it from the pitch and focus on what's in the last sentence, since that's really what grabs the reader's attention.

  6. Okay, first of all I am magorly intriuged by this, like even though the pitch is kind of confusing I would pick this up right away.

    Having said that, the pitch does need work. It left me intrugied by really confused and I had to stop in multiple places to reread it and think about it to figure out what's going on. The first sentence grabed me but then I got really confused when we get to the time lines and multiple selves and how does the heist play into it? I thought the rest would explain how the tarot deck controls her life like that and it didn't... There's a lot going on so I think you need to figure out the most important information (parall time lines/heist OR the tarot deck) and focus mostly on that.

  7. You've got interesting elements here - the tarot cards, the parallel universe- but I think you need to restructure the pitch to highlight the important aspects which are the character's goal, the obstacles, and the stakes. Start off with your MC's goal and then list the things that will get in her way. Is her goal the heist and the stakes staying alive? This will be great once you clarify. Good luck.