HH 425

Therese Wolley arrives into the world disguised as a cancerous growth. Her mother, grateful not to be dying, devotes her life to Therese, who grows up believing her birth was miraculous and that a special destiny awaits her.

Confident that she has come to the world for an important reason, Therese discovers the ability to “spark” people and gain a glimpse into their souls. She only uses this gift to expose the intimate secrets of strangers, basking in the power those revelations provide. She becomes so addicted to uncovering these truths that soon she can focus on little else. She moves in with her boyfriend and his 350 pound game show obsessed mother simply because she is convinced that their little red house is saturated with secrets, the disclosure of which she cannot resist.

Therese's addiction carries grave consequences and the discoveries she makes in that house are so unimaginable, they cause her to go into hiding with one of her children while abandoning the other at the doorstep of a woman who looks like Glinda the Good Witch. As she tries to make sense of her predicament, she is forced to question her commitment to the pursuit of destiny. Her dreams and hopes have been shattered, but before she can find the courage to move forward, she must unravel her beliefs and decide whether fate is something you cheat, or something you control.



Dave said...

I have no clue what this means other than something awful: "Therese Wolley arrives into the world disguised as a cancerous growth."
A tumor? You want people to read about a character you call a tumor?
Surely you jest.
And she's been married with kids? When did that happen?

I like the idea of revealing secrets and becoming addicted to it, but the rest is distasteful.

rudynostalgia said...


Anonymous said...

I agree with the "WTF" sentiment, but it sounds like a very interesting WTF. I say, clarify a little few of the details and eliminate anything unnecessary--there are plenty of agents who enjoy weird.

Inkwolf said...

Yeah, I think the hook needs work, but you have an interesting premise A psychic mind-reader who becomes addicted to snooping in peoples' heads for their secrets discovers something horrific...about her boyfrind? His mom?

Are they, like, the original Texas Chainsaw couple, and lots of wild chase scenes will ensue when they realize she's got their secret chili recipe?

Anonymous said...

If this girl was born a cancerous tumor (WTF?!), I'd say you need a few more fate options in the last sentence.

I have a feeling there is actually a story buried under this, but I can't see it from here. Set this aside for six weeks and read it like you've never seen it before. I think you'll understand why you were snarked.

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing her mom thought the pregnancy was a tumor because she believed she was infertile, or had already gone through menopause, and didn't bother checking it out with a doctor for some bizarre reason. I've only heard of this happening the other way round (tumor mistaken for pregnancy).

I actually like the premise too. The part about Glinda the Good Witch threw me for a loop, but in a good way. The hook needs more specifics, and the tumor thing better explained or omitted.

Anonymous said...

No, wait, I think I got it. The "disguised as cancer thing". Her mother didn't know she was pregnant, she thought she had a tumor. Then it was diagnosed as pregnancy instead, and she was relieved. Which is an interesting way to set up the MC's feeling of specialness and destiny. Obviously, though, the current phrasing confuses people. The first assumption is that this is a supernatural book about someone who actually is a tumor, or that the MC is so obnoxious that she's metaphorically a tumor, so there needs to be a better way to say it. We need really concrete, unambiguous setup to put us in the right place from the first word.

As for the rest of it, I think it's a terrific idea. I love the idea of her addiction to secrets, and choosing a less than ideal romantic partnership because of the high of their secrets. That is really intriguing to me.

Hookwise, you do need for specifics of the one central conflict (antagonist, stakes, etc.).

Clarify, author, so the rest of the world can see what I saw!

Angus Weeks said...

I have a friend who had a lymphoma and named it Bob. Fortunately, radiation killed Bob and my friend went into remission.

Dear author, your wording in that first sentence is entirely wrong. I presume you mean a pregnancy misdiagnosed as cancer and not that the born child is actually a cancerous growth.

December Quinn said...

Had me until paragraph 3. Suddenly there's kids? And abandoning them? What happened to the fun snooping mystery and the fat boyfriend with the secrets?

skybluepinkrose said...

I agree with December: You had me till paragraph 3. FWIW, I understood sentence 1 immediately. But para 3 disintegrates into generalities plus it seems like a disconnect, what with the kids we didn't know she had and the disappearance of the bf and his mom. Give specifics instead of reaching for the grandiose.

Anonymous said...

Author here.

Thanks for the incredibly thoughtful and helpful comments.

To clear up the confusion - MC's mother has been unsuccessfully trying to conceive a baby for all of her married life. Finally, when she gives up all hope, she becomes pregnant and because this possibility is the furthest thing from her mind, convinces herself that the thing growing inside of her is in fact a large and fatal tumor. Which the reader later learns, is actually Therese Wolley - the MC.

My opening line was an attempt at making the hook stand out and from the reaction was clearly ineffective. Lesson learned.

Again, thank you thank you thank you for taking the time to comment and support - appreciated more than you all can know.