Monday, December 17, 2012

Hangover Round 1 Entry #30

Title: Interwoven Deceptions
Genre: Urban Fantasy

A determined, blind educator, with the aid of her police detective lover, vows to rescue her psychic students who've been kidnapped by demons. So, she must reinstate her psychic talents, then travel to the demon world to close the portal and  stop the demons' conquest of humanity.

- 1 -
                In the past, darkness had been my friend, not tonight. A dozen flickering candles supplemented the electrical lights in the kitchen. For now, I'd overpowered the darkness,  but not my distress.  Sweat beaded my brow, and expectation left goosebumps on my skin. I  paced the foyer, taking slow, deep breaths.

                My precognitive sense told me of a visitor tonight, yet whom and when remained  elusive. I stood frozen several seconds hearing the knock at the door. I hadn't expected my  visitor to appear on the material plane.

                I braced the door against the howling winds, as Alyssa, one of my student's parents, slipped in.

                Her dark eyes met mine. "Roberta's gone." Her hands shook.

                Cold shivered down my spine as I put an arm around her. "When?" Another of  Compton's teenagers had joined the Missing. The urge to do something dared me to break the  promise. I slammed it back. 

                "Her mother said she never came home last night." Alyssa scuffed into the kitchen.

                "Join me for tea." I got another cup.

                "It's really bright in here." Her aura flared gray with skepticism. 

                I answered her unasked question. "I can still distinguish some shapes and bright  colors. When objects are close enough, I can make out some details." NO need to mention my  ability to see auras and other astral phenomenon. 

                Alyssa slumped into a chair. "Another teenager missing. You've got to help me protect Ariel."

                Lightning brightened the outside darkness, while the sky-rocketing atmospheric pressure sent tingles up my arms.



  1. Hmmm, I'm having trouble with your opening page. If your MC is blind, how does she see 12 candles flickering, or "her dark eyes met mine"? The part with the auras is good, and your concept sounds interesting, but I was very thrown by all the visual descriptions from a blind MC.

  2. First thing I noticed, you did not name your MC in your logline. I would simplify it. Name the character, if she's blind how can she "rescue her physic students'? Also, you say she must "reinstate her psychic talents"
    I feel the logline leaves me with more questions than intrigue, if that makes sense? With the logline, I want to feel the need to read more, rather than question the impossibility of something.

    In the beginning paragraph, I thought your character was in the kitchen, but you ended it by saying she was 'pacing the foyer'.That threw me a little.
    Also, I'm confused because in your logline you stated that your MC was blind, but in your opening page, it seems to me that she can see. For example:
    'Her dark eyes met mine. "Roberta's gone." Her hands shook.'
    How would she know this, if she is blind, or can only barely make out shapes she couldn't possibly know this.
    I would imagine that your MC's sense of smell and hearing would be heightened, so perhaps you could work that in more..more 'show' and less 'tell'.
    I think you premise sounds interesting, it just needs a little more polishing! I wish you the best of luck! ;-)


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  4. I think my biggest issue with this first page is that I read the logline first. The whole blind issue really threw me. Then, several of the ideas/sentences seem unconnected and the dialog awkward. If your MC is losing her vision, you might explain how shapes and colors go in and out of focus or whatever it is that she can see and how rather than just having her tell us.

    The current logline needs revision. Here is my suggestion:

    Take out BLIND. The reader doesn't know that right away, but having read it in the logline makes your setting up her ability to still 'see' some things very...troublesome. Take out WITH THE AID OF HER POLICE DETECTIVE LOVER. I understand wanting to put that in if you have adult scenes between the two, but it is unnecessary in the logline, unless he is a second main character and plays a large enough part in this story to warrant being introduced in the story's pitch. Take out the entire second sentence, which is a SO THEN sentence (boring) and a confusing one at that. I thought she was already psychic, why reinstate? Portals are cool and I imagine closing one would be tricky...especially if she has to go to the other side to close it, which would effectively trap her there, wouldn't it? Is that how she stops the demons' conquest for humanity (and what exactly does that mean? control, slavery, destruction/death) or does she have to do something more drastic?

    Here is a rough, still-needs-improvement, suggested revision:

    "A psychic educator must travel to the demon world to rescue her students who've been kidnapped by the demons determined to conquer all of humanity."

    I dislike using the word demon twice in the sentence, so if you have a name for the demon world or another name for the demons, I would use that as a substitution. In this revised logline, the stakes still aren't clear enough because 'to conquer all of humanity' is too vague, but I didn't know what your stakes really are, so that's how I left it.

    Hope this helps some and doesn't offend at all. And that Vivian Tredway removal was me. My daughter logged in on my computer and forgot to log out.

  5. Another logline...

    A psychic educator's students are kidnapped by demons; to prevent the enslavement of all humanity, she must travel to the demon world to rescue her pupils and destroy the only portal granting them--and her--access back to earth.

    Or something like that.
    Leah Peterson has a great blog about loglines and gives you a kind of logline-madlib at: