Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Guess the Plot
Through a Glass Darkly
1. The school's science nerd hacks Kari's digital scale and livestreams the results on the Internet, launching Kari into a deadly struggle with anorexia, bulimia, cutting, and a mean stepmom.
2. Nerdy Aaron could not believe his luck! His cool new house-mates not only turned him on to the joys of substance abuse, but they actually trusted him to store the pillowcase full of weed in his room. Hilarity ensues when their house gets raided.
3. The light is out. The glass is broken. Preacher man Joss Simpson will either lose his soul or save it when he enters the mysterious mirrored portal to Dimension X. He has to build a city, an army, and save the world.
4. A gay Japanese man in his last year of law school in the US goes out for the football team and falls for the wide receiver. But will his conservative family in Japan approve? Also, other characters who see life . . . through a glass darkly.
5. At a wild party celebrating his divorce, Steve Betts falls through a second story picture window in the dark. He wakes up in the hospital to find that his wiseacre friends have left him a gift: copies of all 273 books listed on Amazon under the title "Through A Glass Darkly".
6. Kids holding a giant bar mirror across one lane of a dark mountain highway are causing causing a rash of fatal roll-over accidents by drivers trying to avoid head-on collisions (with themselves) -- until a suicidal divorcee sees her chance at escape and floors it dead ahead.
Dear Evil Editor,
Stephen James has finally accepted himself as a gay man when he meets Grace and, one coffee later, is left torn between his undeniable attraction to men and the red-headed exception that proves the rule. [Does that mean I can't be sure I'm straight unless I find a guy who's the exception that proves the rule?] [How many coffees did it take for him to accept himself as gay?] He and Grace marry, but his confusion continues, and the marriage fails. [Too bad. But how could anyone have foreseen that?] Another year, another coffee shop, and this time it is Gabriel who has Stephen brushing up on his flirting skills. Will it be different with Gabriel, [Count on it.] or will Stephen push him away as he did Grace? [Don't take this the wrong way, but who cares?]
Higen Nishida attends law school in the United States, planning to return to Japan, the family law firm, and an arranged marriage upon graduation. [Apparently you've overreacted to my last comment by switching the query to a different book.] [Is the legal system in Japan so similar to America's that going to law school in the US prepares you to practice law in Japan? A lot of law school involves studying cases that can be cited as precedents, but not in any country.] When Gabriel encourages him to try out for the football team, [In his last year of law school? Can you make that the badminton team?] Higen finds himself more interested in scoring points with the wide receiver than in scoring points on the field. [Some gay guys do like a wide receiver. Others prefer a tight end! Ba dum ching.] Their relationship [Higen and the wide receiver?] develops over wine, poetry, and summers spent together on the Johnson family ranch, but as Higen’s time in law school nears its end, he must choose whether to meet the expectations of his family and culture or pursue his relationship with Gabriel. [Something tells me Higen isn't going to meet his family's expectations no matter what he does.] [Is Gabriel and Stephen over?]
Raven Madison and Jack Johnson slip away from a party and make love on the beach. [Third time's the charm?] [Is this Jack Johnson of the Johnson family farm?] As Jack rejoins the crowd, Raven is raped, [You'd think he'd stick around until she was ready to go back. What did he say? "This was nice, but it sounds like they're doing the limbo."?] and her injuries leave her blind. [Those are some pretty serious injuries not to have been mentioned at the same time you said she was raped, i.e. Raven is attacked, beaten and raped.] Jack stays by her side as she heals and adjusts to life as a blind woman, ["I'll hang around until you stop bumping into things. Should be good for a few laughs."] but the terrifying flashbacks brought on by his touch leave Raven wondering if her sight is the only thing she lost that night.
Complete at 117,000 words, Through a Glass Darkly is a work of literary fiction that follows the overlapping lives of Stephen, Higen, and Raven [The only names that appear in more than one of the mini-plots are Johnson and Gabriel. Yet Stephen, Higen and Raven are the ones whose lives overlap?] as they struggle to define themselves while relating to others. [Vagueness is always boring. Note how much more interesting the book sounds with a more specific wrap-up: . . . follows the overlapping lives of Stephen, Higen, and Raven as they lead an army of zombies in an invasion of the Johnson family farm.] Thank you for your time and for your consideration.
There's no evidence that any one of the three main characters even knows the other two.
Is it possible to focus on one character and how that character's life overlaps with the other two, instead of doing these separate paragraphs for each character? It's hard to form an attachment for a character who merits mention in only a third of the plot summary.