12.23.2006

HH Com 385

When Solomon Stephens finds a timeworn family Bible hidden in his daughter’s closet, he realizes she has been carrying on his family's dangerous but long forgotten practice of folk healing. Now, as treatments fail to combat the lethal disease Natalie inherited from a neighbor, Solomon’s last hope is to travel to a nursing home in Chillicothe, Ohio. There he finds 120-year-old Rose Wesley. Near death herself, she reveals the secrets contained within the centuries old book. But it’s still not enough. The young widower, wounded by tragedy, loved ones, and the church, can’t heal his dying daughter until he first heals himself.

This is a description of the plot.
Since, cruelly, I don't care about any of these people, I mutter "so what" and send it back to you.

Bring us into the character's lives: Solomon Stephens discovers his daugher BadGirl has been been practing folk healing. Her failute to cure a lethal disease means...what? Are the villagers going to stone her? burn down the house? put her/him/you on JackKevorkian's mailing list?

and what does "wounded by tragedy, loved ones, and the church" have to do with any of this??

10 comments:

dana p said...

The first sentence got me interested.

With the second sentence the confusion began. Who is Natalie? Is she the daughter? If so, has she been tring to heal herself? That strikes me as odd. But not nearly as odd as inheriting a lethal disease "from a neighbor." I thought one inherited things from one's ancestors! Then suddenly there's Rose, and Solomon is now a widower, Natalie *is* his daughter (one mystery cleared up -- no, wait, maybe it was a different daughter with the Bible)...

But it was still an interesting first sentence, and I'm betting this could be good. Good luck with it!

Anonymous said...

How can someone 'inherit a disease from a neighbor?' If a disease is inheritable, must it not come from a biological parent?

RT

Anonymous said...

Here's where I screwed up in writing this...when I started working on this, it was "hook me in 100 words or less" (before it expanded to 250), so I cut a lot of backstory out and probably 'over-tightened'. Hence, the confusion. Yes, Natalie is Sol's daughter and one tiny detail I excluded was Natalie has been 'taking on' the maladies of those she heals. Once this becomes known, my rather tight paragraph makes a little more sense. But, hey, the comments by Little Miss Snarkalicious (on mine and others) have shed some light on why my queries are getting rejected. Thanks, Dana, for the encouragement.
Rob

Anonymous said...

Author, here. In retrospect, I probably over-tightened this guy. Yes, Natalie's the daughter and she's been healing people not knowing she would contract the diseases of those she healed. Yep, Sol's got a dilemma only a distant relative can resolve (Rose),and yeah, he's been a widower for some time. Thanks for the encouragement, Dana. As for Little Miss Snarkalicious, I'm grateful for her honest feedback....I think her confusion may explain the negative responses my queries are generating!

A Paperback Writer said...

I like the folk healing idea, though. Maybe you could work with it some more.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great story . I would read it. It is one of the better ones I have read in the HH. I would try and expand on the hook and what you have down a little more.

Keep writing!

Anonymous said...

Anon (who is the writer), this is a horribly, horribly boring idea. I wouldn't buy this from the $2 table. Please, think of something else.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like one of those things people will either love or hate...perfect! No luke warm ink from this pen shall flow! Hey, last anon, it's too late for me to scrap the idea....I'm 'all in' at this point. It's done and I'm shopping it around. Maybe time will prove it's a p-o-s, but everyone needs a trunk novel and I've learned more in the last 18 months about writing than I did in the prior 40 years.

jamiehall said...

Is Natalie the daughter? Is some hanky-panky implied, or else how did the daughter inherit a disease from a non-ancestor?

Anonymous said...

Remember, author, that "trunk novel" thing is for real. If, after you get a bunch of full reads and no offers for representation, you feel like it was a waste, it wasn't.

It prepared you to write the next. (Some even say write your second while shopping your first, and so on, but I find it screws up my concentration that way.)

Interesting concept, and it could be spooky, if that's what you're going for. I hope it's not lit or contemporary, because the premise doesn't work for that. But Dean Koontz and Stephen King have gotten wealthy answering people's desire for eerie and creepy!