12.24.2006

HH Com 413 (412 is swilling nog with George Clooney)

Until he was run over by a busload of nuns, Chris Van Dam thought his life was finally turning around. The thirty-two year old agoraphobic had his first real job and was actually leaving the house five days a week—usually without a panic attack. And for the first time he had a dream, that of his boss, the charming and oh so lovely Mae Callahan.

Archbishop Francis Augustine has two intersecting passions: the Catholic Church and corporal mortification. The bus accident, caused by a nun ruler-whipping the driver, obliges him to concentrate on the former. Chris is comatose and the Archbishop must contain the public relations nightmare before yet another scandal damages the Church.

Chris wakes from the coma with miraculous powers. Apostolic Minister Paul Robinson is certain Chris is the Antichrist and will stop at nothing in his (very limited) power to kill him. Archbishop Augustine takes Chris into the protection of the Church and his fearsome Papal SEALs. However, it soon becomes apparent to the Archbishop that Chris’s agenda conflicts with his own, and he must act to protect the Church.

The ensuing collision of the Catholic and Protestant Churches, media and morals, and love and ambition threatens to tear Chris and Mae apart. Chris is forced to confront his fears—which are terrible—and rely on his wits—which are not exactly trusty—in order to save Mae and himself.

Motown Miracle is a comic novel of 102,000 words.

this is a hook! "Papal SEALs" !!

comic novels are really really hard to do well because the essence of them is poking fun at things and it's really easy to cross all sorts of lines with different people. this one has double the chance for that in that it's poking fun at both Catholicism and Protestantism.

This is one that would get a "not right for me" even though it's a good hook, and it looks funny. I'd never take on a book that pokes fun at the church. Other people will though, which is why I'm once again grateful for my colleagues.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a great read to me. I'd buy it!

Good Luck!

A Paperback Writer said...

It does look funny. Make sure you've read Good Omens, though, to make sure you haven't crossed over into an already-done plot.

Brady Westwater said...

I love it! But the first line of the second paragrpah threw me off. Suggested - very rough to get the idead across - reordering of that paragarph:

The bus accident was caused by a nun ruler-whipping the driver. Chris is comatose and Archbishop Francis Augustine,who has two intersecting passions: the Catholic Church and corporal mortification, must contain the public relations nightmare before yet another scandal damages the Church.

GutterBall said...

I want to read this. Right now. Papal SEALs! Bwahahah! Fearsome Papal SEALs, at that!

Anonymous said...

100,000+ words is a little long for a comedy. Maybe it works for this book, but it's worth considering if there's any fat that could be trimmed. You know what they say about brevity, after all.

Inkwolf said...

I admit, the dreaded Papal SEALs were what put the cherry on my rapidly growing sundae of unholy delight. I would SO read this...

heidi said...

You hooked me with the first line, and for the most part, kept my attention all the way through.

The Papal SEALs felt a little too ridiculous to me and I'd hesitate at that point, but I'd ask for first pages just to see if you had the comic style necessary to carry something like this off.

It can be done, but I agree with Miss Snark: it can be difficult to do well.

jerico said...

The first line is laugh-out-loud, keyboard-wrecking funny. The rest of it, not so much.

Crystal Charee said...

This sounds great. I'm twenty-eight and got my first job six months ago because I was was agoraphobic before that. You probably didn't know you had a built-in audience, huh? Heheh. If you have any research questions, feel free to let me know.

Absolutely fantastic first line.

Virginia Miss said...

unusual premise. I hope we get to see pages.

Angus Weeks said...

Author, could I suggest rephrasing this bit:
"And for the first time he had a dream, that of his boss, the charming and oh so lovely Mae Callahan."

As I read it, I was thinking, "No no, everyone dreams several dreams every night, so it's not the first time he's dreamed, it's merely the first dream he remembers having." But having read the entire hook, I suspect that you actually meant "for the first time he can imagine a future with someone". Yes?

dana p said...

Bring on the Fearsome Papal SEALs!

Count me in as another wannabe reader.

Anonymous said...

Read Another Roadside Attraction. If you can match this, you're golden.

Anonymous said...

This submission is a series of speed bumps. I had to stop and read too many lines over (and some over) again to get the drift. I'd have to be ruler-whipped to read 102,000 words of this kind of humor.

Anonymous said...

Yep, I'll read anything that satirizes organized religion in an intelligent, new way.

This looks great to me.