Rules of Limbo

Aralyn Kraft

Book Cover

GENRE

CRIME OTHER ACTION DETECTIVE DRAMA FANTASY

    Core Theme

    LIFE VS. DEATH, JUSTICE, PHILOSOPHICAL EXISTENCE

    TIME PERIOD

    20th Century (multiple decades)

    COMPARABLE TITLES

    CRIMINALS OF LIMBO, HERE OR THERE, SECRETS IN LIMBO.

    CHARACTER LIST

    RANDY: 25+. LEAD. BUDGET CLERK, DEAD, AND A PLAIN JOE WITH NOT SO PLAIN CURIOSITIES.

    VANESSA: 30+, EMPLOYEE AT THE BUREAU'S AWAKENING ROOM & RANDY'S SUPERVISOR

    HENRY: 30+, BOY NEXT DOOR TYPE RESIDENT IN LIMBO & RANDY'S SIDEKICK/FRIEND.

    WILLIAM THORPE: 35+, IN CHARGE OF PAPERWORK AT BUREAU'S AWAKENING ROOM, THE MANAGER, & RANDY'S POINT PERSON FOR INFORMATION.

    EVELYN: 40+, ASIAN FOOD DELIVERY LADY & RANDY'S MENTOR.

    FLO: 50+, LONGTIME RESIDENT IN LIMBO & CO-OWNER OF THE PROPS DEPARTMENT.

    Logline

    Find your killer or accept eternal peace? When the realm of the living clash with the land of the dead, an unraveling of a chain of dangerous events may bring everyone's undead lives to a final curtain - once and for all. Your choice, all you have to do is sign a waiver and it's all over.

    Target Audiences

    Age: 13-17,18-34,35-54,55+

    Target Gender: Universal

    Setting

    Limbo, the cityscape land between the living and the dead

    Based on a True Story

    No

    Publishing Details

    Status: Yes: self-published

    Publisher: SmashWords.com and Amazon.com

    Year Published: 2018

    Starting Description

    Randy, in a journey to find out either why he was murdered or decide whether he should sign off like others and pass into the unknown or make a new afterlife for himself, uncovers a sinister plot to use Limbo as the living's crime syndicate hide out. How far would they go to keep their secret?

    Ending Description

    The Manager of Limbo is shot but survives due to warehouse team, his secretary knows their secret (how he died and why), Randy hasn't quite made up his mind to stay but wants to make some changes to the Rules while he's there, still - no one knows Evelyn's background and she's not willing to tell.

    Group Specific

    Information not completed

    Hard Copy Available

    No

    ISBN

    Information not completed

    Mature Audience Themes

    Language/Profanity

    Plot - Other Elements

    Happy Ending,Philosophical Questions,Twist,Other

    Plot - Premise

    Internal Journey/Rebirth,Rebellion Against 'The One',Other

    Main Character Details

    Name: Randy

    Age: 20's

    Gender: Male

    Role: Skeptic

    Key Traits: Clumsy,Insecure,Naive,Modest,Sarcastic

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Evelyn

    Age: no one knows

    Gender: Female

    Role: Mentor

    Key Traits: Adventurous,Badass,Charming,Confident,Decisive,Engaging,Honorable,Selfless,Skillful,Secretive

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Vanessa

    Age: 33

    Gender: Female

    Role: emotional

    Key Traits: Charming,Complex,Confident,Criminal,Faithful,Leader,Modest,Obedient,Sexy,Secretive

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Henry

    Age: 29

    Gender: Male

    Role: sidekick

    Key Traits: Clumsy,Charming,Empathetic,Naive,Insecure,Underdog,Obedient,Patriotic,Skillful,Funny

    Development Pitch

    There's no telling who will end up in Limbo and what choices they may make: an astronaut, famous singer, mob boss, actor, single mom. With an unlimited variety of exciting possibilities lies not just within who comes through but their personal perspectives and lives they've lost. Dealing with 2nd chances as both a bane and a boon. Imagine a mafia boss in the middle of the biggest score ever ending up in Limbo. Does he want to leave? Get revenge? Turn Limbo into his/her personal hideout? Finding out they know someone who is already there but they have no memories of them. Caveat - The longer you're in Limbo, the less you remember of your old life. What if your belief system doesn't include Limbo? How does the character come to grips with their death? Where they are? Their signature on the paperwork won't allow them to move on but in effect, they're stuck? How many people escape Limbo back into the living world? Does the Manager now need to create a task force to retrieve these souls? How far will the power of Limbo take an individual and their hopes, dreams, and death? (A little like Fantasy Island use to be.)

    Genre

    ACTION, SUSPENSE, THRILLER, MATURE AUDIENCE, DRAMA, FANTASY

    Brief

    Randy is dead, but he doesn't know how he died. With the help of an undead agent, he comes to find the culprit of his death. However, by doing so, he risks the rules of Limbo where many come to escape their past life. Whether to accept his own fate, or risk the acceptance of Limbo for others, is the real choice for Randy.

    Overall Rating

    GOOD

    Point of View

    FIRST PERSON

    Narrative Elements

    Authors Writing Style: GOOD

    Characterization: GOOD

    Commerciality: GOOD

    Franchise Potential: FAIR

    Pace: GOOD

    Premise: GOOD

    Structure: GOOD

    Theme: GOOD

    Accuracy of Book Profile

    The book profile reflects the book accurately enough to be intrigued about the premise. As the book goes deeper into the storyline and characterizations, the plot thickens.

    Draw of Story

    The realm of middle ground between living and dead is a very interesting topic. It felt like I was immersed in the world of after-life crime drama. The story was well structured with characters thought out.

    Possible Drawbacks

    The beginning of the book started slow, but that was to establish Randy and others in the realm of Limbo. But the pace picked up shortly after, so it was only a minor detail.

    Use of Special Effects

    THE STORY RELIES A LITTLE BIT ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

    Primary Hook of Story

    Since the story has very similar characteristics to Altered Carbon and Soul, the movie would need to have a stellar cast and unavoidable trailer as a hook.

    Fanbase Potential

    This has a potential to have a mediocre fanbase, considering a lot of audience would be college aged to adults. The story has potential to have a large fanbase if a known actor is casted for Randy.

    Awards Potential

    Yes, there is potential for awards when it comes to directing and screenplay for Rules of Limbo. The screenplay, if adapted, has potential to be witty and in depth.

    Envisioned Budget

    MEDIUM BUDGET

    Similar Films/TV Series

    ALTERED CARBON, SOUL, THE GOOD PLACE, THE LOVELY BONES.

    What’s New About the Story

    The grittiness of Limbo with murderers lurking and innocent resting is original about this story. Limbo seemed relatable to the living world, which made it interesting to read because it was almost as if the world we are living now could be Limbo and we don't know it.

    Lead Characters

    Randy did not seem to have any unique qualities as such to stand out of the crowd. However, maybe because of that it makes them stand out. Perhaps the point of it was that even a mundane character like Randy can be murdered and thrown into a world of crime syndicate even after death.

    Uniqueness of Story

    Rules of Limbo is definitely a culmination of a few storylines I have seen before. Although it is not a rare gem, it is unique enough to be acknowledged for a storyline. Pacing of the story can be improved about it. Also, the characterization can be revised to have it be more specific and tightened to move the story along.

    Possible Formats

    Film - Streaming, TV Series - Limited Run / Mini-Series

    Analyst Recommendation

    CONSIDER

    Justification

    The story is unique enough to be outside the realm of imagination and makes the audience wonder whether Limbo is real or not. The story seems like a crime version of The Good Place and that was a successful phenomenon on TV. Rules of Limbo would be a good combination between Altered Carbon and The Good Place for streaming services, if they decide to adapt.

    Brief

    Randy is dead, and reached a place called Limbo. Here, Randy has a choice, he can either take the opportunity to bring justice to a criminal or finding complete peace by letting go and finally move on without knowing if justice was served. As mundane as Randy was in the living room, he is determined to find the culprit for his death. However, he has to choose between finding his murderer or risking the balance of Limbo and the fate of everyone who have found peace in it.

    What We Liked

    The story in itself was unique to read. The combination of after-life and crime drama was a refreshing take on the concept of "Limbo". Also, the fact that a very normal and somewhat boring man was chosen as a protagonist for the story, makes it out of the box. The grittiness of Limbo with murderers lurking and innocent resting is original about this story. Limbo seemed relatable to the living world, which made it interesting to read because it was almost as if the world we are living now could be Limbo and we don't know it. The only difference is a door.

    Film: Rules of Limbo would make a great streaming movie. With its definite end to the story, the film would make a phenomenal message about the middle ground between 'hell' and 'heaven'. The movie also has potential for exceptional direction and screenplay, making it viable for awards. There is also a possibility for a sequel that follows William and Vanessa's storyline. With the help of a good cast and crew, the story has potential to be known as a rare gem, similar to Defending Your Life.

    TV: Rules of Limbo would make a good limited series tv show as it targets the adult audience who seek intellectual entertainment. The show would be a combination of Altered Carbon and The Good Place. The relatability of the world would make it interesting to watch. Also, with a normal man as a protagonist, the story becomes even more appealing to the public since the story revolves around his murder, a no-one who was killed because he was good at his job.

    Key points: Good vs. Evil; Medium Budget; Unique story about After-Life; Relatable characters; Thought evoking plot points

    Synopsis

    Randy is dead, but he doesn’t realize that he is dead until his body is dragged around in Limbo.

    Limbo had four distinct rules; Let the dead remain dead, nobody is disabled in the Limbo, refill the coffee maker, and always close the door behind. After dying, Randy ends up in what is known as ‘Bureau’s Awakening room’ in Limbo. While his file is under investigation as to how, why , and when he died, Randy has to lead the same old life in Limbo as he did while he was alive.

    The ‘work’ in Limbo is the same as if Randy was awake and in his alive office. Except, his jerk manager isn’t around to be micromanaging him or sending him on unnecessary errands. But still, Randy can feel someone constantly watching him even though he can’t see anyone around. He feels stuck in the same hamster wheel and starts to wonder why he is still dreaming about work. If he was really in Limbo or dreaming, Randy wonders shouldn’t he be dreaming about skydiving, or water rafting, or chilling on a luxurious sandy beach. Instead, he is stuck on a boring desk even in his subconscious.

    Still thinking that he is imagining things, Randy sees that his apartment is almost identical to his real one back in the living world. Stepping into his cleaner version of the apartment, he decided to order food. A lavish dinner with steak, potatoes, and milkshake. Withe concept of money out of the realm, he was skeptical as to how he was going to pay for his meal. As soon as Randy ordered his food through the menu card, a timer popped up notifying that it will be delivered in thirty minutes.

    While working, Randy comes across the finances in the Bureau and notices quite a bit of sum missing from their budget. While he is informing William of the thousands missing from the budget, Randy collapses with a deja-vu. This gives William the indication that Randy has just had an episode about how he died. As Randy reaches home, he finally runs into the two suited agents who are working on his death case. Sonja and Dejesh, the two case workers, ask many questions to learn what had happened to Randy. Upon learning that Randy’s death was no normal circumstance, all three of them understand that the law firm that Randy was working for was no stranger to criminal activity. Angered by this, Randy wants nothing more than justice in the living world.

    As Randy walks up to his apartment building, he gets an eerie feeling of someone lurking inside his house. Peering through the front doors, he finds Sonja and Dejesh arguing about William and himself. By eavesdropping, he soon learns that they were ordered to make him and William sign the paperwork to let go and find peace of their deaths, and if they don’t comply, they are to be terminated, much like Henry. Determined, everyone in Limbo head out to find William and save him from the crime syndicate of Limbo.

    After saving Limbo from danger of being exposed to the living, Randy decides to stay in Limbo to investigate the cases further so he can provide closure to both William and Vanessa; and he decides to enjoy Limbo with his extended undead family and promise to help whoever comes through the Bureau’s Wakening Room doors next.

    About The Author

    According to the Book Profile Aralyn Kraft is the author's pen name, one the cats in their home do not care for. They are an indie-author who has written and self-published four books in different genres whilst being admonished by said cats as they try to type around their loving furry bodies holding down the keyboard, as well as holding down a full time job outside of writing. Their accomplishments are available on Amazon.com and Smashwords.com minus the fur balls.