Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Logline Critique Round Two #34

GENRE: YA Fiction

When seventeen-year-old, Kenny Panteria’s, girlfriend is kidnapped in front of him, he’s determined to find her even after he learns it is his abuse the kidnapper wants revealed.

When Kenny learns his girlfriend masterminded her own disappearance to expose her father’s pedophilia, which caused her brother’s suicide, Kenny’s anger spirals and he doles out the only justice he feels fair, to the thief that robbed him of his innocence.


  1. I think you don't need that first paragraph. Pretty much what you say there is down below, and better (the first paragraph reads wonky to me).

    I also think your second paragraph should be tightened, as it's really one long sentence. I'd leave out the part about her brother's suicide (it's got impact, but feels extra and clutters the pitch as it is. Also, you should make it clear about who the thief is and how he robbed Kenny of his innocence, because with the brother reference, I can't be sure if it was the suicide of his gf's brother of if he was molested - and if it was the latter, why would he be doling out revenge just now?

    "Kenny's anger spirals when he learns his girlfriend masterminded her own disappearance to expose her father’s pedophilia, which also caused her brother’s suicide. He decides to dole out the only justice he feels fair, to the thief that robbed him of his innocence."

    Good luck with the rest of the crits!

  2. The first thing I noticed is that there shouldn't be commas around the character's name. But the serious issue here is that you have too much going on that isn't clearly connected.

    How is the kidnapper in the opening paragraph connected to the girlfriend's father? And as pinguicha said, we can't tell from this who the 'thief' is, and how that ties in with the history of the father and brother.

    I think it would help if you determine which is truly the inciting incident in the story -- Kenny seeing his girlfriend kidnapped, or finding out that she masterminded it herself. Then you can go from there, making sure to stay focused on the MC's central goal.

  3. Agreed. Kill the first paragraph. Also, there should be a comma after seventeen-year-old.

    Stick with the 2nd paragraph and try breaking it into two sentences.

  4. I feel like this is too much information because I got a bit lost going through. It's better with just the second paragraph, however, whether you want to keep it depends on what the driving conflict and stakes are. Who's the main character here? It sounds like Kenny, but the second paragraph is all about his girlfriend.

    I'm also not clear on the last bit. Who is the thief who robbed whom of innocence? I'm assuming the father, but you've got the girlfriend and the brother ... Just too many characters. Can you cut it down? What's the MAIN plot and what is the SUB-plot? Maybe in this instance, being too specific is a bad thing--taking out the brother's suicide would leave just the father's pedophilia.

  5. Bob says: I just sort of lost track of the idea in the wording and had to re-read it. I think a re-write and brevity would help here. Bob

  6. I agree with the others, particularly Samantha S. A logline must be tight. Hell, mine was only 45 words, and I still got taken to task for having two different plot arcs instead of just focusing on one. But it does help clarify and focus if you do give yourself a hard word count limit to work within, like 45 words.

  7. This sounds like a complex and intriguing story. The log line strikes me as TWO log line drafts. I like the second one better. Starting there, here's what I need to know: what are the stakes? And what consequences might Kenny face?

    The brother's suicide may be the girlfriend's motivation, but I think you can leave it out of the log line. Keep the focus on Kenny.

    One other thing: fiction is not a genre. You may mean YA literary or YA mainstream.

    Good luck with your ms.

  8. I read this several times and am still confused. Is the first sentence saying that the kidnapper wants to expose Kenny's abuse? Of who? And how does she disappear and get kidnapped at the same time? I think you may mean these to be the same event but it does not sound like that. Finally, I don't understand who the thief is or how this person robbed him of his innocence. Was he abused too? Vague terms like this (robbed him of his innocence) don't tell us anything. You need to be specific.

    Overall, I think you need to start this one again. Focus on what happens to start the story (girlfriend disappears or is kidnapped) then tell us what that makes him want to do (I assume, find her?) The show us the obstacles that make finding her hard (ie, she planned the whole thing, she doesn't want to be found...).

    Good luck!

  9. I was very confused by all the characters. And how will the girl's disappearance expose the father's crimes? Was the girl abused, too. Is he the same one who abused Kenny?

    BTW you don't need to set off the character's name with commas.

  10. I'm confused, too. I don't know if it's Kenny's abuse or the kidnapper's that needs to be revealed.

    And yes, "robbed him of his innocence" is code - we need to know what happened and how that plays into the girlfriend's kidnapping.

  11. I'm going to agree with those that said the first paragraph is unnecessary. The information in it is mostly implied in the second. I also think that you don't necessarily need the reference to the brother's suicide. While important to the story as a whole, it just muddles up the logline which is all about Kenny.