Log-Lines from the Edge of Ridiculousness

Last week I braved my fears and threw my attempt at a log-line for my book out to the masses for feedback.  And what feedback I got!  Such encouraging, kind, constructive words from so many of you…I’m still chewing through it all, but I’m feeling better about the concept.

We really Are Not Alone…and it rocks.  *big grins*

One suggestion that I found really helpful was to compare the book to popular movies or books that already exist.  While the hubster and I were discussing this idea, the conversation drifted, as it generally does, into the ridiculous.  Soon we weren’t talking about my book at all, but saying things like:

Beverly Hillbillies meets The Breakfast Club

Five nouveau riche hillbilly highschoolers move to Beverly Hills and find themselves in detention after refusing to conform to privileged private school rules.

or

Uncle Buck meets Ghost Busters

Unemployed bachelor and all-around slob, Buck babysits his brother’s rebellious – and ghostly – teenage daughter and her cute – and slimy – younger brother and sister.

We spent a decent amount of time cracking up at our new game and very, very clever book premises.  (To be fair, the hubster was home sick that day, jacked up on cold medicine…and I’m all a muss with preggo hormones…so things probably sounded far funnier to us than they will to any of you.)

As we were cackling and patting ourselves on the back for our wit and humor, it dawned on me how this could easily turn into hours and hours of fun – or, at the very least, a blog post.  🙂

So here are some log-lines for unwritten books based on the idea of marrying popular movies/books/tv shows together.

300 meets 18 Again

King Leonidas – trapped in the body of his swinging grandfather – must lead a force of 300 men to fight the Persians while maintaing his bad-ass reputation, while his grandfather, trapped in King Leonidas’ much younger body, decides to re-live his youth.

How to Train Your Dragon meets Pride and Prejudice

Sparks fly when spirited but clumsy Elisabeth Bennet meets single, rich, and powerful dragon-slaying Viking Mr. Darcy.

Training Day meets Top Dog

On his first day on the job as a narcotics officer, a rookie cop works with a rogue detective who wasn’t what he expected: a dog.

Footloose meets Diehard

A city boy moves to small-town USA where he gives a local terrorist operative a dose of their own medicine through the medium of rock and roll and dancing.

Seabiscuit meets Boondock Saints

An undersized depression-era racehorse sets out to rid Boston of evil.

Elf meets Dirty Harry

After inadvertently wreaking havoc on the elf community due to his ungainly size and love of his gun, a man raised as an elf in the North Pole is sent to San Francisco to track down a serial killer.

UHF meets Jersey Shore

A local public TV station gets a new owner – a 20-something New Jersey-ite with orange skin, sky-high bouffant, and a vapid lifestyle.  Against all odds, the station becomes a big hit, with all sorts of gags and wacky humor from her friends.

Alright, that’s plenty from me – I want to hear what you’ve got!  What are some story combinations so ridiculous that they have you laughing out loud?

Hives

I’m breaking out in hives.

For the past nearly two months, I’ve been sweating in solitary confinement over writing a log-line for my book.  The solitary confinement has been self imposed because, per my usual ridiculousness, I hate the idea of trying something, sucking at it, and then looking stupid in front of all you lovely people.

But sometimes (okay, really, probably all the time), a girl needs feedback.

Some basics first, for those of you reading my blog who aren’t writers – a log-line is a single sentence that tells what a book or story is about.  Kristen Lamb has a frigging fabulous post on writing log-lines – one I’m a little embarrassed to admit I can pretty much recite verbatim.  (That’s embarrassing because I still have this sneaky suspicion that I’m failing miserably in my log-line writing attempt.  Hence this post.)

When I first began writing three years ago, I was clueless.  Everything about my start in writing was @$$ backwards.  My pants were in charge and I was flying by the seat of ’em.  All I knew about the story I was writing was that I was trying to get my character to a specific destination.  The why’s for getting there weren’t important to me when I began.  *cringe*

Several months after I started writing, I somehow realized (among a plethora of other smack-myself-in-the-forehead-I’m-going-to-be-lucky-if-this-thing-is-salvageable epiphanies) that I needed to figure out where the story was going.  So I stopped and began my first feeble attempt at plotting.  At that point, the book became three books.  After the drafts of those three books were finished, I realized that the story hadn’t tied up as neatly as I would have liked, and so a fourth was born.  Now, three years later, I’ve got four books drafted, all tightly knotted together, the first book nearly polished enough for beta-readers, and I’m trying to figure out how to go about this log-line crap.  Do I write one log-line for each book?  Or do I write one for all four?

(And let it be known to the writing-deities of the universe that I am well aware of how @$$ backwards it is to work on the log-line after the story is written.  I see my folly now.  It will not be repeated when I start a new book, I swears…)

I’ve been working on one for all four, partly because I’m being lazy (shut up, I know – writer’s aren’t supposed to be lazy.  I’m playing my third trimester card here), and partly because while each book definitely has its own story to tell, in the end, all four books come together as a very solid whole.

But the problem with writing one log-line for a four-part series is that I’ve ended up with what I’m sure is the world’s longest run-on sentence.  And also, I’m not sure if a log-line for the whole series is the best way to represent a single book.  I don’t know; maybe I need to do both – one log-line for each individual book, and one for the series as a whole.

Oh, lordy.

Anyway, here’s what I’ve got so far – one log-line for the entire series.  Have a looky:

Abandoned in the woods as an infant, and brought up in a family that despised her, a teenage girl places her trust in an other-worldly stranger hoping to discover what she really is without being caught by either of the two men who claim to be her father: one, who wants to kill her for what she’s not; the other, who’s intent on using her as a weapon because of what she is.

Thoughts?  Does it catch you?  Does it make you want to read?  Or does it drone on and on to the tune of more YA white noise?  Perhaps I ought to throw a vampire in there for good measure (*giggle, snort*)…

I would heart, heart, HEART your feedback, lovelies – from all of you, writers or no.