Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Logline Critique Round One #24

TITLE: Fabrication
GENRE: YA Fantasy

Candace Crystelle's perfect life vanishes into nothing when her wing is broken, her mother breaks her engagement and her sister, the future queen, banishes her from the kingdom.

In a society where deformities force you to live as an outcast, Candance doesn't know how to survive away from her spoiled life. With no friends and no where to go, Candance decides to slip through the portal and live with the humans, where she expects everyone to treat her like a pamperd princess.

It doesn't take Candance long before she fits in with the In crowd. She's invited to all the right parties and meets the boy if her dreams. When she learns of her Mothers death and her sister's desire to bring her back home, it's time for Csndance to decide which life she wants. Her old one or the new life she's fabricated with the humans.


  1. My logline is the very first sentence. When I submitted and saw the 150 word limit, I thought I had gotten confused, so I added more of my pitch.

    My logline, the one I would submit for a contest, is only the first line.
    Sorry about my confusion.

  2. The first line alone lays out no stakes at all and gives no idea of plot or conflict or anything beyond relatively meaningless incidences of what could just be minor bad luck without context.

    I figure I'll comment on the rest of the pitch as well:

    When you say "where she expects everyone to treat her like a pamperd princess" the natural assumption is that they won't, and that here she'll face hardship to overcome. Except she doesn't. Everything turns out just great and it's easy!


    The "stakes" laid out in the last sentence only mean anything if you're taking it as assumed that blood ties are always more important than the ones we make for ourselves. Which you cannot assume AT ALL.

    (There are also several typos.)

  3. The conflict in the first sentence is more than mere bad luck. A child whose own mother and sister are against her has a lot stacked on her shoulders.

    Bad family relations are very strong conflicts. Only those who have faced something similar would know how truly difficult it is too live with such conflict.

  4. I think you could craft something out of the first and last sentences. Maybe something like: 17 y/old angel Candace takes refuge in the human world when her Queen mother and sister banish her from the Kingdom. When the queen dies and she's invited back home she must decide whether to assume her title or stay with the humans she's come to love.

    Something like that?

  5. Thank you for the suggestion. I like it!

    So, the point of Fabrication is how Candance fabricates her new life, creating a Princess world in a place where she is not known as a princess. She does struggle among her peers, but they eventually accept her.

    Her invitation to come home is risky. Deformities are not allowed in the kingdom. On earth, she fabricated a new wing and can only hope the repair was good enough to fool everyone.

  6. Aside from what the others said about shortening the setup, you need a tangible goal and a decision is not one because a) it takes 10 seconds to make and b) there are no clear obstacles to deciding something. What is actually stopping her from going home? What will happen if she doesn't go (or does?)

    Good luck!

  7. I like the first line. I'd add another about her searching out a new life among the humans and having to make a choice.

  8. What's stopping her from going home? She was exiled and banished by her own sister. Deformities are not allowed in the kingdom.

  9. Okay, so I will try and add that into the first line. Thanks!!

  10. I think you're missing the point. It's not about answering the questions we have in the comments. The fact that we have them at all points to weaknesses in the pitch. You want the reader to walk away from it saying "what happens next?" not "wait, what just happened?"

    In fact, you pointed out one of the challenges yourself:

    "Bad family relations are very strong conflicts. Only those who have faced something similar would know how truly difficult it is too live with such conflict."

    So ONLY those who have faced something similar will come away from this with the same understanding you had? See?

    Family rejection CAN be just bad luck if they're not really a part of your life until they screw you over. Just saying she had a perfect life doesn't assume that these people were any part of it before this. Someone who has dealt with abuse and rejection from family members might walk away from that first sentence with a "good riddance" reaction, especially when you find out the alternative is a really great life.

    YA books in particular often make the point that the circumstances and people around you shouldn't control or define you, you can overcome them. You simply can't take it for granted that the reader will assume her mother and sister matter to her or at all a positive force in her life, especially when the first we hear of them is them throwing her out over something that good family would be supporting her through.

    Simple tweaks could do it, like "her beloved sister" or "her mother is forced to break her engagement" (BTW, the way you have it, "her engagement" made me think at first that it was the mother's engagement.)

  11. THIS is the reason I tried for a spot in this workshop. Thank you for the suggestions and advice. I will most definitely apply your thoughts to my revisions.
    Thank you, Leah:)

  12. Her is my revision:

    Candance Crystelle is banished by her beloved sister when her wing is broken. Living in the human world helps her fabricate a new wing. But will that be enough for Candance to return to her old life?

  13. This stuff's HARD! I fully admit I didn't even write my own logline. Another author did that for me and from the back cover copy of the published book. ;)

    I blogged about it tonight, in fact, because all this brought back the painful and embarrassing process that was my own logline journey.


    In case you're interested.

  14. I like your revision, but I don't feel that her sneaking in with a fabricated wing is enough to make this stand out. Tell us where she's been banished from (so we know it's another realm, not the neighborhood). Is it difficult for her to fit into the human world? If she can return with a fabricated wing, does she still want to when she gets the chance? You don't have to answer all of these questions in a logline, but hinting at them reveals more of the conflict.

  15. Right. Not enough tension. No stakes. No conflict. I'll try again!
    Sheesh. I'm sorry, but I don't find this easy:(

  16. It seems from the first version that there is no story here. A girl wanders through her life and then makes a decision.

    The second version tells us almost nothing.

    What does she want? Does she want to return home, so she works hard at fixing her broken wing? Does she just want a home where people accept her as she is? WHat is her goal? And then, what stands in her way? What does she do to overcome it?

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  18. Candance Crystelle is banished by her jealous sister when her wing is broken. If Candance can't fabricate a new wing and return home, her world will perish, for she holds the title of Life Giver.