Dear Miss Snark;
I'm a faithful reader of your blog and would like to thank you for your generosity in sharing your advice and information. My submission below is from a 100,000-word mainstream story with a science fiction premise. (that means it's science fiction most likely) I have prior publications in fiction and non-fiction through short stories, essays, and a novel.
On the Aegean coast of Turkey, an ancient bone box is unearthed which will challenge long-held religious beliefs. As the remains inside the ossuary are handed over to a renegade scientist (Joe) for cloning, Liz, the archaeologist who discovered the artifact, fights to terminate the cloning process. Frustrated with her failure, and worried about the welfare of the unborn child, Liz endangers her professional standing by assuming an alias and volunteering to become the surrogate mother, planning to abscond with the baby after birth.
As world conflict mounts, and forces escalate that would harm the clone, Liz and Joe must terminate their own battle and unite to protect the unborn life Liz now carries. They race through Turkey, Scotland, and the United States to seek the specialized medical care the clone needs to survive and to finally determine through the courts what makes a parent and who will protect the best interests of this unique child.
I appreciate your time in considering my project and look forward to your reply.
do you understand any of the science of cloning?
or the science of anything? bones decay. the reason there are mummies is cause they wrapped the bodies in shrouds and put them in air tight sarcophagi in a DESERT.
The only thing that makes me crazier than getting historical stuff wrong is getting science wrong. You can make science do you what you want on another planet but here on earth, you gotta play by the rules here.
I'd stop reading right now and send you a form letter.
"Professor, I think we've found something."
At her student's excited words, Liz Sinclair poked her head above the ground's surface to peer across the narrow trench she worked a couple of rows away from his. "What is it, another oil lamp?"
"No." Steve's muffled voice floated across their precisely laid-out grid. He remained bent low in his trench over whatever it was he'd unearthed.
"An Artemis votive?" her own voice rose with anticipation.
"Nooo," he drawled with a hint of laughter.
Liz sighed. Her body burned with the suffocating heat of working deep in the confines of the partially collapsed cave. Her arms ached from weeks of endless physical work, with only a handful of artifacts to show for it. And her brain seethed with frustration since her department had just today upped the date of her tenure evaluation. She didn't have time for teasing. "You're still within the first century strata, right?"
"Yep," came his clipped reply, but one that maintained that hint of excited discovery.
After brushing her hands off on her cut-off denim shorts, Liz levered herself out of the meter deep dugout and caught an immediate glimpse of what had captured Steve's interest. He was hunched over a rough stone slab, about sixty centimeters long and half that high, stuck into the back wall of the narrow trench. He'd already brushed away enough dirt to reveal incised, slanted ancient script. Now with his trowel he worked the edges of the stone emerging from the earth...like a box...like an ossuary. Impossible.
Her heart lurched. "Let me get there a sec."
Steve glanced at her over his shoulder, a wide grin splitting his sun-burnt face. He pulled himself up to sit on the edge, leaving her room below.
Her mind buzzing, Liz squeezed into the narrow opening in front of the large stone box buried deep in the soil. Her fingers, once again minus gloves, dug rapidly around its rough edges. Limestone, probably. She drew in a shaky breath, her pulse racing, her fingers surging with that familiar electrical awareness of an artifact's connection to people and lives of the past.
Squinting against the blinding mid-afternoon sun, she studied the partially revealed script, then blinked to clear her eyes of the dust which surely marred her vision. She brushed away more dirt until she hit a clog. Her fingers, tracing lightly over the rough surface, detected a thin spray of mortar.
"Mortar? Covering the inscription?" She glanced up at Steve, then reached over to stop his swinging leg.
"Sorry. Guess I'm keyed up. Unusual, isn't it?"
"A bit." Had someone deliberately plastered over the first half of the name of the ossuary's occupant?
"What does it say?" Anticipation made his voice squeak.
"I can only make out this last word. Give me a minute."
"Last? The mortar's covering the left part."
"Near Eastern. Written right to left."
She tried to discern each letter of the faintly carved word. This was just not possible. An ossuary, here on the western Aegean coast of Turkey. At least a thousand kilometers from where the bone box surely originated.
Have you ever seen an archeaolist at work?
You can write about things you haven't done, but for dog's sake, do some digging to get your facts right.