Logline Critique 11

Title: SHONDOREEN – A path unveiled

YA Fantasy

Young Duke Thierry never knew about the powerful magic in music. With it he could save another world from losing all – if he regains memories and a Heartsong he never realized he had. But Ta’Athannais, Highking of Shondoreen & betrayed best friend from a former life, might kill him first.



13 thoughts on “Logline Critique 11

  1. Fantasies are so hard to write loglines for. You need to work in enough world-building for it to make sense, without overwhelming the reader with too much information. I think you could both tighten and clarify a few things here to make this one stronger.

    Part of the problem here is that I don’t know what a Heartsong is, or have any idea that Thierry is missing memories (until you say he needs to regain them),I don’t know anything about the other world (another planet? fairy realm?) or what exactly “losing it all” means. Plus, by the end I’m not sure if Thierry’s “former life” is just the past, or a life erased by amnesia. The good news is, it’s all fixable.

    I’d try something like this “Music holds powerful magic. x-year-old (YA loglines usually tell you the age of the MC) amnesiac (I’m guessing) Duke Thierry’s Heartsong – the (fill in what a Heartsong is) – holds the key to saving (whatever the other world is) from (whatever is going to destroy it). All Thierry has to do is regain his memories in order to find it. Just one problem – the Highking of Shondereen, Thierry’s former best friend, is out to kill him in revenge for a betrayal Thierry doesn’t even remember committing.” Ok, so that’s maybe not the best (and might not actually even be your story, I’m just guessing at some of these things), but I hope it gives you an idea of what specifics you could add for clarity.

  2. The concept of magic in music is really neat. It’s compelling that you start with this detail, but I’m not sure what a Heartsong is (maybe you don’t need to define it here in the logline but find a way to describe it). The construction “betrayed best friend from a former life” is difficult to read. I’m wondering why his friend wants to kill him? What is he going to do about it?

  3. I love the idea of music containing magic – musicians know this and it’s a great premise for a story! Reordering the third sentence might improve the flow: ‘ If Thierry regains his memory and discovers his Heartsong, then . . . ‘ Perhaps you can be more specific about how Thierry’s gifts / powers / realizations will save another world. Also, beyond revenge does your antagonist have a motive for killing Thierry? hope these comments help!

  4. I love fantasy, so magic in music and other worlds – its all my kind of story! My only comment is it wasn’t obvious what world this story was inhabiting i.e. is Duke a typical teen living in our world but there’s these other worlds he can access only he can’t remember how? Or is it purely set in a fantasy world/s? Some sort of indicator either way just helps the reader understand what story style it is.

  5. I just found this again and realized I never said THANK YOU to all who commented! I appreciate your feedback and help; I hope I will find a way to make it work. But thank you again and please forgive my lack – it was by no means lack of interest or gratefulness!

      1. Oh I continue to work on it. In that case the logline is the easier part to fiddle with – only 130 characters. The rest of the MS is harder. When you’re bilingual there are always those “oddities” others find either refreshing or – in the case of the writerly police – “disturbing” and in some case outrageous. Alas I tried in either language – with the same result so I think I should stick with the language I at least think and dream in – and don’t need to look up every other word. But it’s a never ending, frustrating task – only the voices in my head keep me going some days…

      2. That must be rough. I can’t imagine trying to write in another language (I have a smattering of a few languages, but not enough of any to write in). Hope you have some good crit partners to help steer you in the right direction.

      3. Are you a member of SCBWI? They organize crit groups. There are some online crit groups out there that you might find helpful. Even if you could just find one or two people to trade MSs with online, it could help.

  6. No, I’m not. It’s children’s authors as far as I know, don’t know how many will be into YA. Plus local crit groups wouldn’t help, I already have nobody who reads English locally and a “local” crit group would be in German – which wouldn’t work. I tried a crit group here which was formed during one NaNoWriMo – that didn’t work for the same reason. Watercooler is just frightening – I spent a couple weeks lurking and fled after watching new people being beat up. Currently I am trying to find someone through Goodreads. I did before but only got the “very nice, I liked it” type which isn’t helpful as after rounds and rounds of going over it even I spot infodumps and distancers anew. Guess it needs some sensitized to deal with my kind of problems lol

    1. SCBWI groups include YA, I’m not sure if they have any online groups. You could check out kidcrit here:http://www.calla.com/wordpress/kidcrit/ it’s run by an awesome Canadian author named Marsha Skrypuch (that links send you to her site, you can link to kidcrit from there), you need to request to join, and you can tell her I sent you. It’s a private forum where we post a chapter at a time of novels (from MG to Adult – there’s another section for PBs) for crit. We all write in English, although I think a large number of us have second languages. You’ll be asked to do 3 crits before posting your own work, and at least one crit a week while posting things (preferably more). All the critiques are constructive and generally pretty helpful. I’ve been away for the last few weeks, but I should be back online next week once I’ve kicked this flu. Check out the link and think about it. It’s a great resource.

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