A retired galactic cop is looking to upgrade his space ship but finds an outpost where everybody but a clumsy noncom and an evil botanist have been wiped out by a poisonous plant.
Actually he comes to the station initially to pick up a package, an engine part that will upgrade his ship. I suppose that could be made clearer.
My bad, I missed out on a dash. It’s supposed to be non-com, short for non-commissioned officer. Maybe it would be clearer with “NCO”?
Sounds like you’re describing the first scene as opposed to creating a logline. Picking up a ship part is immaterial to the rest of the main story, I’d imagine. Concentrate on the elements:
1) The protag- retired galatic cop. Good!
2) The Antag- Not clear; evil botanist? poisonous plant (don’t be the plant, plase!)
3) Protag Goal- has to more than upgrading ship. What was his goal BEFORE running into evil botanist, and what is his goal afterwards?
4) Stakes- wiping out all life throughout our galaxy?
5) Inner conflict- none
6) Outer conflict- avoid being poisoned by plant?
7) Hook- poison plants destroying universe?
8) Genre- Sci-fi/horror? Comedy?
If you answer these essential elements, the logline will practically write itself. Try to keep it under 30 words; 25 is better!
Interesting concept, in any event.
Okay… let’s see…
1) … well, no problem there.
2) The evil botanist is a religious fanatic who created the the plant with the intent of “discrediting science”. It’s sort of a mutual thing where he protects the plant which in turn protects him.
3) There’s more to upgrading his ship than I’ve been able to explain in less than 25 words. His ship can travel faster than the speed of light, which is the “old” way of interstellar travel. It has the negative side effect of time dilation – theory of relativity – where time passes more slowly for somebody traveling that fast. Because of this he’s outlived his family, friends, law enforcement agency and entire civilization. The engine part he’s come to pick up will enable his ship to fold space so he can travel instantly between star systems without time dilation problems.
The time dilation is also why he is retired. Since the law enforcement agency no longer exists and neither the civilization he figures he’s out of his jurisdiction. So he figures the plant and evil botanist isn’t his problem at first.
Afterwards when he decides he has to deal with it himself it’s a matter of getting off the planetoid alive with the engine part and the non-com. And make sure the plant doesn’t spread to other worlds.
4) Stakes is the members of this fanatical religion trying to discredit science, spread their religion and wage holy war against anyone who travels through space the “Wrong Way Up” – There is no up or down in zero gravity, but these fanatics believe otherwise.
5) His inability to have lasting relationships due to the time dilation problems has made him a loner, and quite a bit bitter and cynical. Any time he makes a friend on a world that person will either be very old or long dead when he returns to that world, unless he can get the space folding thing to work on his ship.
6) Avoid being poisoned by plant and destroying the plant before escaping.
7) I think so… but more like galaxy, rather than universe.
Genre … all three of those… maybe more space opera than sci-fi. … Or in Save the Cat terms: Dude With a Problem or possibly Monster in the House.
I’ll try to rework the logline, though.