Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Logline Critique Round Three #4

TITLE: Missing Allele
GENRE: Young Adult Dystopian

Light-blind Zuzan is ripped from the comfort of her underground home and sent to the Human Genome Project (HGP) headquarters to solve issues created by the genetic plague. This disease divided humans into two distinct phenotypes: ultra-intelligent yet physically weak people who live underground to avoid contagion and environmental dangers, and intellectually challenged yet physically robust people forced into hard labor. But when infants begin to perish of unknown causes, the laborers lose patience and wage their revenge on the HGP scientists they hold responsible.


  1. I like your premise but I get a little lost in all the description. Can you show my what's at stake for Zuzan and what SHE has to do to save the world? Make it tight and grab me by the collar.

  2. I agree with the above comment. I'm not sure where Zuzan fits in the story. Is she taken to headquarters because she is going to solve the issue or because she is going to be used as part of the experiments? Be more specific about how she fits in the story.
    You did a good job of telling us what the conflict is.

  3. Wow. That's a lot of information! But I'm left with many questions: Is Zuzan one of the ultra-intelligent phenotypes, then? Or is she something singular? Is this why she was "ripped" from her home? Basically, why is she so special? And, is she really blind, blind to light? Or is she just sensitive? If truly light blind, wouldn't that just make her blind, period?
    Due to length, and the wall 'o information, I'd pare it down and keep the yummy bits.
    For example (guessing on the class thing- I'm sure you have a slang term for the two phenotypes of your own):
    Ripped from home, light-sensitive scientist, Zuzan, must work under the Human Genome Project headquarters's directive to find a cure for the genetic plague killing the laborer phenotypes' children. If she cannot solve the mysterious deaths, the laborer class will revolt and kill the scientist phenotypes who they've come to blame.
    Also, you might want to look up Human Genome Project on wikipedia. It was a massive, trans-global scientific project- there might be confusion or copyright issues.
    Great sounding plot, though! I'd read it!

  4. I'm a bit confused. What are these issues she needs to solve? Is this the infants perishing? If so, it takes too long to get to this information and you haven't told us what SHE has to do this and what SHE has to lose if she fails.

    Aside from that, you have set up the end of this like it has nothing to do with Zuzan (the conflict seems to be between the laborers and the HGP scientists). We need to know what will stop her from meeting her goal.

    Good luck!

  5. This is a lot to take in. I think it might be a bit too long for a log line (which should be short and grabby).

    When Zuzan takes a job with a major company she is directed to find a cure to the genetic plague killing children. While at work she learns she and her fellow scientists are blamed for the outbreak. Now, to prevent class warfare and countless deaths she must cure the impossible.....

    Or something like that. It's just an idea.

    Essentially, we don't need all the nitty gritty details in the log line. Just enough to understand the essence of the story and conflict.

  6. I like the premise but I'm confused. How is Zuzan important to the plot? What does she need to do? What are the stakes for her, specifically?

  7. This seems to be the rare pitch that has a few too many specifics. The background info is stated succinctly, but I agree it is overwhelming the pitch.

    I think you can sum up that entire middle part with a descriptor around "light-blind." Something like:
    [Age] Zuzan, light-blind from a genetic disease, is ripped from..."
    (or whatever works to describe what light blind is).

    Then I would go into detail about that last line, When infants... and make sure to show how Zuzan is involved with the fight/cause and what will happen if she doesn't fight back. I agree with the others to keep the focus on her and what she is doing to drive the plot.

    This sounds like a cool story. I'm picky on the YA dystopians, but if they are more science or sci-fi based, I'm usually on board.