Saturday, May 9, 2009

Is This Better?

I cut and pasted all your suggestions into Word, then tried to mash them all up. I tried to focus on the important things: 1) wakes up early, 2) murder!, 3) consequence. I felt that the sentence would be tighter/shorter by taking out the parents, but then that seemed to lose some of the threat to me, so I decided to keep it. I'm still not comfortable with the length of it, but I know that this is miles better than before-- SO THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR HELP!!!!!!!

Edited with an (even further) updated version:

After waking up decades before her cryostasis was supposed to end, seventeen-year-old Amy must stop a murderer from killing the other frozens trapped on the space ship before her parents are unplugged.

I am absolutely not opposed to rewriting again, so feel free to rip this sentence up, too! :)

Ironically enough, your comments have also inspired me to entirely rewrite my query letter too! I am going to create, essentially, two pitch sentences (one for each POV character, as this story switches between them), and use that as a launching point for the query summary. Even if I don't end up placing in the pitch contest with this sentence, I'm thrilled that I now have a stronger query just because of the help you all have given me this weekend!

Thank you ALL so much for your help!

10 comments:

Unknown said...

I like it! I do think you should change the last part to "before her parents are unplugged" instead of "he unplugs her parents". The gender-less murderer is much more entertaining- the "he" gives us too much identity up front (if that makes sense?)

And I know a lot of people pushed for the "x-year old Name..." thing, but I think it works better as "a teen girl". In a single sentence pitch age and name are a bit too specific. Check out
http://www.castingthebones.com/?p=217
for some other great tips on log lines.

Anonymous said...

It's hard to include everything without it sounding like a run on. :) Here is another suggestion...lol. As if you need anymore!

By the way, if your story is in present tense, keep the sentence in present tense...if it's in past...change it to "woke" instead of "wakes"...and so on.

Seventeen-year-old Amy wakes up from cryo-stasis to find that there is a murderer on board the space ship and she must stop whomever is killing the other sleepers before they get to her parents.

Danyelle L. said...

This is a very helpful place: http://edittorrent.blogspot.com/2009/04/log-line-pitches-or-how-to-tweet-your.html

I like, but it doesn't have the same expediency the earlier draft did. I also like Kat's idea about keeping the murderer genderless.

Maybe, and I warn you my brain is broken: After waking up fifty years earlier than planned, Amy discovers that someone has been killing her ship mates and must find the murderer before her parents are unplugged.

Hmmm.

Waking up fifty years early saved Amy's life, but now it's up to her to find out who's been unplugging her ship mates or her parents might be next.

*pokes brain with a dull pencil*

PJ Hoover said...

Ditto on what Cat said! But I' also reword to eliminate two different lengths on time. Maybe decades. Also maybe go with "a" instead of "the". Little, I know.

Seventeen-year-old Amy wakes up decades early from cryostasis and must stop a murderer from killing the other frozens trapped on the space ship before her parents are unplugged.

Unknown said...

OK, seriously--I may have to start paying you, PJ! You always have the best suggestions!

Thanks everyone for the help!

Corey Schwartz said...

Yes, I think I would go with PJ's too. Not even sure you need "decades." Does it matter how early?

Unknown said...

PS, Kat: Normally, I'd agree with you, but for this contest, the winning example they gave specifically used the "blank-year-old name" format.

Tana said...

I love it. You nailed it!

Angela said...

I like it...wonder if you need the word "trapped" because they are "on a spaceship" and "sleepers" so we already have a sense of their helplessness and isolation.

Sounds like an exciting read!

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