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Glass Domes (Psychological Thriller)


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#1 kathleenq

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Posted 03 September 2017 - 06:55 PM

UPDATED IN #10

 

The unnamed NARRATOR grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and a need for control, and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission.

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he is finally able to escape his childhood prison and think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this.

 

Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats. What did they ever do to deserve this fate of becoming test vessels? It’s this combination, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he finally graduates.

 

Soon after, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him first. Some guy had drunken himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and proceeded to shit himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have: if brains were bigger, would people be smarter? And if so, how could he make brains bigger?

 

The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an abomination. And he knows it. He knows it’s dangerous and he should never have done it. He knows he should really destroy it.

 

But before he can, the little vial of disease vanishes.

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone, that it’s out of his hands. And he hopes and prays that it really is gone, that nothing will come of this carelessness.

 

Two years later, he sees a newspaper headline, proclaiming “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” Whatever it is has caused brains to expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals.

 

For a moment, he feels proud of his scientific achievement before everything comes crashing back down. People have died and it’s his fault. Or is it his fault? He never did manage to test it, so he can’t know for sure.

 

He doesn’t know how to deal with any of this and his conclusion is that he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and off to die in quarantine. She’s calling to ask him to join the team for the cure.

 

He hesitates. Even though he knows that all of this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. Eventually, he agrees, thinking he could end all this misery. After all, he made the disease, he should be able to destroy it.

 

But soon he finds out that the disease has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible. All he can do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine.

 

Days and weeks blur together. The long hours and the constant failures finally start to catch up to him and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms.

 

He tries to leave, claiming he needs to go back to work. But they refuse, determined to send him and his infected body to quarantine instead. The day is saved when one of his coworkers comes to secure his release, arguing that there’s so few of them left now that it doesn’t even matter who’s infected. They need people to research.

 

Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before finally reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began.

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome, he sits and watches the students, admiring their lack of concern for the national health crisis. They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights in the library, just like he used to. And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for them, for these students, for their future.

 

And suddenly, he know what he’s been doing wrong.

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, the lab sends it off to be tested. And then they wait. And wait.

 

Finally, they get the call. Everything will be okay.

 

And now, he can cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.


Synopsis: Glass Domes


#2 smithgirl

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Posted 04 September 2017 - 11:25 AM

The unnamed NARRATOR grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and a need for control, and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission. This really sets up the mood.

 

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he is finally able to escape his childhood prison and think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this. Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats. What did they ever do to deserve this fate of becoming test vessels? It’s this combination, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he finally graduates. You need to tell us his major. Biology? Biochemistry?

 

Soon after, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him first. Some guy had drunken himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and proceeded to shit himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have Why are these thoughts he shouldn't have? He wants to make people better, right?  if brains were bigger, would people be smarter? And if so, how could he make brains bigger? Agents hate questions like this in query, so I would also avoid in the synopsis.

 

His The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an abomination. Why an abomination? I thought he wants to make things better? And he knows it. He knows it’s dangerous and he should never have done it. He knows he should really destroy it. To do this kind of research he would need an advanced degree in the biomedical sciences and a lab. Did he get PhD in school? An MD? Does he have a research position at a university? But before he can, the little vial of disease vanishes. He has only one single vial of the disease? That doesn't sound realistic. Who stole the vial? Did that person intend to help people or use the disease for evil? 

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone, that it’s out of his hands. And he hopes and prays that it really is gone, that nothing will come of this carelessness. But two years later, he sees a newspaper headline, proclaiming “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” Whatever it is has caused brains to expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals. For a moment no comma he feels proud of his scientific achievement comma before everything comes crashing back down. People have died and it’s his fault. Or is it his fault? He never did manage to test it, so he can’t know for sure.

 

He doesn’t know how to deal with any of this and his conclusion is that he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. Where did he go that he didn't hear about millions dying? How does his friend reach him if he's isolated he does't know people are dying? She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and is off to die in quarantine. She’s calls to ask him to join the team for the cure.

 

He hesitates. Even though he knows that all of this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. Eventually, he agrees, thinking he could end all this misery. After all, he made the disease, he should be able to destroy it. But soon he finds out that the disease has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible. All he can do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine.

 

Days and weeks blur together. The long hours and the constant failures finally start to catch up to him and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms. He tries to leave, claiming he needs to go back to work. But they refuse, determined to send him and his infected body to quarantine instead. The day is saved when one of his coworkers comes to secure his release, arguing that there’s so few of them left now that it doesn’t even matter who’s infected. They need people to research. Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before finally reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began.

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome, he sits and watches the students, admiring their lack of concern for the national health crisis. What? Why are the students unconcerned? They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights in the library, just like he used to. Why? And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for them, for these students, for their future. And suddenly, he know what he’s been doing wrong.

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, the lab sends it off to be tested. And then they wait. And wait.

 

Finally, they get the call. Everything will be okay. And now, he can cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.

 

​The overall story is clear to me, although there are some details that confused me (listed in the body of the text). You need to clarify your protagonist's degree and occupation that facilitate the research he does. It's also strange that he has only one vial of the disease. I spent years doing biomedical research, and you never have just one vial. And who stole the vial? Why did they steal it? What was their motivation?

 

The protagonist also seems to have conflicting opinions of his work. His motivation (to improve people) is good, so why does he consider the plan an abomination? If he's a scientist, then he's probably comfortable with the idea of disease manipulation. Finally, the size of your brain is constrained by the size of your skull, so the idea of just making brains larger in the absence of making skulls larger seems somewhat illogical. Stylistically, I would recommend you try to combine some of your short paragraphs, although that's up to you. The writing has a lovely creepy feeling, and that's really good. It's hard to get emotion into a synopsis. You shouldn't be discouraged that I'm confused about some things. This is really hard. Just go back and work one it some more. Try to get feedback from more people. Can you please look at my synopsis when you can? Thanks! http://agentquerycon...sion-in-post-8/



#3 treedom

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 02:35 PM

Posted 03 September 2017 - 07:55 PM

The unnamed NARRATOR grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and a need for control, and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission.

I'm interested in this. I like the idea of his actions being influenced by his mother, though I'd be a little worried this might be handled in a misogynistic way.

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he is finally able to escape his childhood prison and think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this.

It sounds like it's the critical voice of his mother coming out, right? Maybe you could briefly say that. As in, after the first sentence of this paragraph, "He finds himself adopting his mother's critical voice towards those around him." And then, could you identify what he objects to?

 

Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats. What did they ever do to deserve this fate of becoming test vessels? It’s this combination, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he finally graduates.

 

Soon after, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him first. Some guy had drunken drunk himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and proceeded to shit himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have: if brains were bigger, would people be smarter? And if so, how could he make brains bigger?

Could you clarify that the guy isn't homeless? When I read it the first time, I thought that's what it said, and that seemed kind of harsh towards homeless people. Maybe it's just a frat guy or something?

 

The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an abomination. And he knows it. He knows it’s dangerous and he should never have done it. He knows he should really destroy it.

 

But before he can, the little vial of disease vanishes.

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone, that it’s out of his hands. And he hopes and prays that it really is gone, that nothing will come of this carelessness.

Could you add something about why he had a change of heart? He sounds like an evil genius in the beginning, following in his mother's footsteps. But then he has a total change of heart, which is good. But what caused it?

 

Two years later, he sees a newspaper headline, proclaiming “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” Whatever it is has caused brains to expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals.

 

For a moment, he feels proud of his scientific achievement before everything comes crashing back down. People have died and it’s his fault. Or is it his fault? He never did manage to test it, so he can’t know for sure.

 

He doesn’t know how to deal with any of this and his conclusion is that he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and off to die in quarantine. She’s calling to ask him to join the team for the cure.

 

He hesitates. Even though he knows that all of this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. Eventually, he agrees, thinking he could end all this misery. After all, he made the disease, he should be able to destroy it.

 

But soon he finds out that the disease has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible. All he can do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine.

 

Days and weeks blur together. The long hours and the constant failures finally start to catch up to him and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found in his home? surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms.

 

He tries to leave, claiming he needs to go back to work. But they refuse, determined to send him and his infected body to quarantine instead. The day is saved when one of his coworkers comes to secure his release, arguing that there’s so few of them left now that it doesn’t even matter who’s infected. They need people to research.

Did they find out he was infected while he was being treated for his cuts? Maybe you could quickly say that.

 

Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before finally reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began.

So the hospital still refuses to release him?

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome, he sits and watches the students, admiring their lack of concern for the national health crisis. They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights in the library, just like he used to. And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for them, for these students, for their future.

 

And suddenly, he know what he’s been doing wrong.

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, the lab sends it off to be tested. And then they wait. And wait.

 

Finally, they get the call. Everything will be okay.

 

And now, he can cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.

 

Interesting main character! He seems like a complicated guy, and it's intriguing to think of rooting for someone so damaged. I think the synopsis might be a little front-loaded, though, in terms of details in the beginning of the story. Maybe you can add some more details to the end of the synopsis. I'm especially curious about why the MC had a change of heart. He basically goes from being pretty evil to sort of caring about people, though he still seems pretty arrogant (in that it's the students who make him want to find a cure rather than the ordinary people). It seems a little unrealistic to me that the students wouldn't care about the disease that's killing billions of people. But maybe you can just leave that detail out?



#4 kathleenq

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Posted 12 September 2017 - 08:59 PM

Thanks for the input! I'll post a revision soon!


Synopsis: Glass Domes


#5 kathleenq

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Posted 12 September 2017 - 11:08 PM

The unnamed NARRATOR grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and a need for control, and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission.

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he is finally able to escape his childhood prison and think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this.

 

Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats. What did they ever do to deserve this fate of becoming test vessels? It’s this combination, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he finally graduates, with a Ph.D. in biology, concentrating in pathology.

 

Soon after, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him first. Some rich yuppie had drunk himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and shat himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have: if brains were bigger, maybe people would be smarter. He should make brains bigger.

 

The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an abomination. And he knows it. He knows it’s dangerous and he should never have done it. He knows that brains are sensitive little things and any miniscule change could cause massive damages, personality changes, physical handicaps. He knows he should really destroy it, and he does, all but one vial. Just enough to test it.

 

Before he can, he misplaces it.

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone, that it’s out of his hands. And he hopes and prays that it really is gone, that nothing will come of this carelessness.

 

But two years later, he sees a newspaper headline, proclaiming “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” Whatever it is has caused brains to expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals.

 

For a moment, he feels proud of his scientific achievement before everything comes crashing back down. People have died and it’s his fault. Or is it his fault? He never did manage to test it, so he can’t know for sure.

 

He doesn’t know how to deal with any of this and his conclusion is that he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and is off to die in quarantine. She’s calling to ask him to join the team for the cure.

 

He hesitates. Even though he knows that all of this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. But she was one of the few people who actually understood him, and it’s crushing him to know that he caused her imminent demise. Finally, he agrees, thinking that she deserves better. After all, he made the disease, he should be able to destroy it.

 

But soon he finds out that the disease has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible. All he can do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine.

 

Days and weeks blur together. The long hours and the constant failures finally start to catch up to him and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms.

 

He tries to leave, claiming he needs to go back to work. But they refuse, having found the disease in his body during their examinations and determined to send him to quarantine. The day is saved when one of his coworkers comes to secure his release, arguing that there’s so few of them left now that it doesn’t even matter who’s infected. They need people to research. The hospital continues to refuse.

 

Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before finally reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began.

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome, he sits and watches the students, admiring their resilience in the face of the health crisis. They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights in the library, just like he used to. And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for them, for these students, for their future.

 

And suddenly, he know what he’s been doing wrong.

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, the lab sends it off to be tested. And then they wait. And wait.

 

At last, they get the call. Everything will be okay.

 

Now, he can finally cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.


Synopsis: Glass Domes


#6 smithgirl

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Posted 15 September 2017 - 12:20 PM

The unnamed NARRATOR grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and a need for control, and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission.

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he is finally able to escape his childhood prison and think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this.

 

Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats who did nothing to deserve their fate. What did they ever do to deserve this fate of becoming test vessels?  It’s this combination, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he finally graduates, with a Ph.D. in biology, concentrating in pathology.

 

One day Soon after, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him first. Some rich yuppie had drunk himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and shat himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have: if brains were bigger, maybe people would be smarter. He should make brains bigger.

 

The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an abomination. And he knows: He knows it’s dangerous and he should never have done it comma. He knows that brains are sensitive little things and any miniscule change could cause massive damages, personality changes, physical handicaps. So he destroys it, He knows he should really destroy it, and he does, all but one vial. Just enough to test it. But then he misplaces the vial.  Add to previous paragraph.

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone, that it’s out of his hands. And He hopes and prays that it really is gone, that nothing will come of this carelessness.

 

But two years later, he sees a newspaper headline: proclaiming “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” Whatever it is has caused Brains to expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals.

 

For a moment, he feels proud of his scientific achievement before everything comes crashing back down. People have died and it’s his fault, or maybe notOr is it his fault?  After all, he never did manage to test it. so he can’t know for sure.

 

Still, he panics and decides doesn’t know how to deal with any of this and his conclusion is that he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and is off to die in quarantine. She’s calling to ask him to join the team for the cure.

 

He hesitates. Even though he knows that all of this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. But she was one of the few people who actually understood him, and he's crushed and it’s crushing him Active not passive. to know that he's responsible for caused her imminent demise. So Finally, he agrees, thinking that she deserves better. After all, he made the disease; he should be able to destroy it.

 

But soon he learns finds out that the disease has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible. All he can do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine, too.

 

Days and weeks blur together The long hours and the constant failures finally start to catch up to him and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms.

 

He tries to leave, claiming he needs to return go back to work. But they refuse. He is infected now having found the disease in his body during their examinations and determined to send him to quarantine and must be quarantined.   One of his co-workers The day is saved when one of his coworkers comes to argue his case, secure his release, arguing explaining that there’s so few of them left now that it doesn’t even matter who’s infected. They need people to research. The hospital continues to refuse. Still, the hospital refuses. Re-word to make this last sentence active rather than passive.

 

In the paragraph above, the day is not saved and his release is not secured, so I would re-word.

 

Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before finally reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began.

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome, he sits and watches the students, admiring their resilience in the face of the health crisis. They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights in the library, just like he used to. And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for them, for these students, for their future.

 

And suddenly, he know what he’s been doing wrong.

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, the lab sends it off to be tested. And then they wait. And wait.

 

At last, they get the call. Everything will be okay.

 

Now, he can finally cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.

 

Hi Kathleen. I think you did a really job of addressing all my questions. Your synopsis is still a bit long, though. The consensus is 1 page single-spaced, 12 pt Times New Roman, 1 inch margins. I put your synopsis into Word with these settings and, eliminating the page breaks between paragraphs, and you were ~ 1/2 page over. I made a bunch of recommended edits which gets you closer to a one-page length. You have a fair amount of redundancy in your writing that can be easily cut. You might try to cut a bit more, get it down to between 600-700 words. Good luck!



#7 Preston Copeland.Biz

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Posted 16 September 2017 - 12:59 PM

​Greetings Kathleenq,

 

​I hope I can help you here. Remember, I'm not a pro at editing synopsis's, but I will try and give good advice.

 

 

 

 

The unnamed NARRATOR ​(so the unnamed narrator is the boy in this household? Maybe you will tell us his name later? grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and a need for control, and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission. 

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he is finally able to escape his childhood prison and think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – ​(the em dash kind of confused me, or maybe it was the word 'well' at first i thought it was a transition word, then I saw it meant like mental health, maybe use 'stable' or 'normal') well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this. ​(remember to show us what they are like, even just a sentence, what are they like?

 

Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats. What did they ever do to deserve this fate of becoming test vessels? It’s this combination, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he finally graduates, with a Ph.D. in biology, concentrating in pathology.

 

Soon after, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him first. Some rich yuppie had drunk himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and shat himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have: if brains were bigger, maybe people would be smarter. He should make brains bigger. ​(from reading I've done, I don't believe larger brains make smarter people, or maybe new research has said otherwise. either way, I guess he could be thinking illogically in a rage, even though he has a PHD

 

The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an ​(what is an abomination in this context?abomination. And he knows it. He knows it’s dangerous and ​where does he do this research at? is there a love interest in his life--just curious)he should never have done it. He knows that brains are sensitive little things and any miniscule change could cause massive damages, personality changes, physical handicaps. He knows he should really destroy it, and he does, all but one vial. Just enough to test it. ​I'd try to be a little more clearer in this paragraph. I'm not exactly sure what he's doing specifically and where he finds materials, etc. who's brains is he working on?

 

Before he can, he misplaces it. ​hmm... he misplaces a vial? Can a vial hold a large brain? I thought they were tiny cylinders

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone, that it’s out of his hands. And he hopes and prays that it really is gone, that nothing will come of this carelessness.

 

But two years later, he sees a newspaper headline, proclaiming “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” Whatever it is has caused brains to expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals. ​I really like this concept, but are the brains literally growing like this? Making people blind and deaf?

 

For a moment, he feels proud of his scientific achievement ​How are brains erupting a scientific achievement? Maybe clarify)before everything comes crashing back down. People have died and it’s his fault. Or is it his fault? He never did manage to test it, so he can’t know for sure. ​Does he believe others could have created it as well?

 

He doesn’t know how to deal with any of this and his conclusion is that he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and is off to die in quarantine. She’s calling to ask him to join the team for the cure. ​I would give her a name, and weave her in more, I think because she ultimately  dies and it effects him deeply....

 

He hesitates. ​(so far, you have been showing a lot of his thoughts and feelings, but we need key events too. Even though he knows that all of this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. But she was one of the few people who actually understood him, and it’s crushing him to know that he caused her imminent demise. Finally, he agrees, thinking that she deserves better. After all, he made the disease, he should be able to destroy it.

 

But soon he finds out that the disease has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible. All he can​you have to be more specific here, show how he keeps going, is he stranded at a home in the northwest when a helicopter flies overhead drops supplies that allow him to trek across the country to a quarantine zone? Weave events in here with specifics, so we can see your story better) do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine.

 

Days and weeks blur together. The long hours and the c​(we don't really know what failures you're referring to)onstant failures finally start to catch up to him and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms.

 

He tries to leave, claiming he needs to go back to work. But they refuse, having found the disease in his body during their examinations and determined to send him to quarantine. The day is saved when one of his coworkers comes to secure his release, arguing that there’s so few of them left now that it doesn’t even matter who’s infected. They need people to research. The hospital continues to refuse.

 

Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before finally reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began. ​(how do they get to Chicago? Are planes available?

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome ​(What is a glass dome? Like a gypsy ball?, he sits and watches the students, admiring their resilience in the face of the health crisis. They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights in the library, just like he used to. And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for them, for these students, for their future. ​Good quality for him to have. makes us like him and understand him more

 

And suddenly, he know what he’s been doing wrong. 

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, the lab sends it off to be tested. And then they wait. And wait.

 

At last, they get the call. Everything will be okay.

 

Now, he can finally cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.

 

​I really think you have a great story here kathleenq. I would work on more details and specifics. I hope that some of my feedback can help you with this. I believe events transitioning from A to B to C are important and I think you can do much better in this aspect. I think you should go through your manuscript from p. 1 to the end and fill up on actual details from your book. You may fill up 10 pages then you can narrow it down later

​Hope this helps

let me know when you put up a newer version

Good luck


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Email: pcopeland2345@gmail.com


#8 kathleenq

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 03:08 PM

 

​Greetings Kathleenq,

 

​I hope I can help you here. Remember, I'm not a pro at editing synopsis's, but I will try and give good advice.

 

 

 


 

​I really think you have a great story here kathleenq. I would work on more details and specifics. I hope that some of my feedback can help you with this. I believe events transitioning from A to B to C are important and I think you can do much better in this aspect. I think you should go through your manuscript from p. 1 to the end and fill up on actual details from your book. You may fill up 10 pages then you can narrow it down later

​Hope this helps

let me know when you put up a newer version

Good luck

 

Thanks for the feedback! I just wanted to clarify a few points, so I won't be including them in the actual synopsis - the main character doesn't have a name, and actually doesn't even have a gender. It's written in first person and neither gender nor name are ever mentioned. I'm using the "he/him" for query/synopsis purposes since it's much easier to read.

 

There is also never a love interest, and the vial just contains the bacteria/disease that the scientist creates, not an actual brain.

 

He's also always working in some sort of lab, and travel hasn't completely broken down, so he still takes normal forms of transportation (cars, planes, etc) to get where he needs to go.

 

The glass dome is literally the shape of the library (Mansueto Library at the University of Chicago if you want to look it up)

 

I did actually write a list of event that occurred, but cut most of them out since the synopsis was way too long (as I'm sure you've experienced as well), and this is the clearest that I've been able to make it. I'm going to post a new version in the next few days, and I'd love to know what you think about that!


Synopsis: Glass Domes


#9 kathleenq

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 03:10 PM

Hi Kathleen. I think you did a really job of addressing all my questions. Your synopsis is still a bit long, though. The consensus is 1 page single-spaced, 12 pt Times New Roman, 1 inch margins. I put your synopsis into Word with these settings and, eliminating the page breaks between paragraphs, and you were ~ 1/2 page over. I made a bunch of recommended edits which gets you closer to a one-page length. You have a fair amount of redundancy in your writing that can be easily cut. You might try to cut a bit more, get it down to between 600-700 words. Good luck!

Thanks for all the feedback! I do agree with you that it's still a bit long. I tried to cut it to 850 words before posting here, and I think most of your suggestions to cut it down more are good! I'll be posting a new version in the next couple of days!


Synopsis: Glass Domes


#10 kathleenq

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Posted 19 September 2017 - 11:40 AM

LATEST:

 

The unnamed NARRATOR grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission.

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he escapes his childhood prison and can think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this.

 

Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats that did nothing to deserve their fates. It’s this, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he graduates with a Ph.D. in biology, concentrating in pathology.

 

One day, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him. Some rich yuppie had drunk himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and shat himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have: if brains were bigger, maybe people would be smarter. He should make brains bigger.

 

The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an abomination. He knows it’s dangerous and he should never have done it. He knows brains are sensitive and any change could cause massive damages. So he destroys it, all but one vial. Just enough to test it. But then, he misplaces it.

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone. He prays that nothing will come of this carelessness.

 

But two years later, he sees a headline: “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” The effect: brains expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals.

 

For a moment, he feels proud of his scientific achievement before everything comes crashing back down. People have died and it’s his fault, or maybe not. After all, he never tested it.

 

Still, he panics and decides he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and is to die in quarantine. She’s calling to ask him to join the team for the cure.

 

He hesitates. Even though he knows this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. But she was one of the few people who understood him, and he’s crushed that he’s responsible for her imminent demise. So, he agrees. He made the disease, he should be able to destroy it.

 

But he soon learns that it has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible. All he can do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine too.

 

Days and weeks blur together and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms.

 

He tries to leave, claiming he needs to return to work. But they refuse. He’s now infected and must be quarantined. One of his coworkers comes to argue his case, explaining that there’s so few of them left, it doesn’t matter who’s infected. Still, the hospital refuses.

 

Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began.

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome, he sits and watches the students, admiring their resilience in this health crisis. They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights, just like he used to. And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for these students, for their future.

 

And suddenly, he know what he’s been doing wrong.

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, sends it off to be tested. And they wait. And wait.

 

At last, they get the call. Everything will be okay.

 

Now, he can finally cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.


Synopsis: Glass Domes


#11 Dave1

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Posted 20 September 2017 - 03:22 PM

LATEST:

 

The unnamed NARRATOR grew up in a strict household, where his mother once killed a beloved pet out of pettiness and his father never even dared smile without his wife’s permission.

 

His life changes at the University of Chicago, where he escapes his childhood prison and can think for himself. He can wonder about the people around him, wonder what’s wrong with them, why they can’t just be – well, he doesn’t actually know what they should be like. Just not like this.

 

Animals, though, are far easier to understand. Especially these poor little lab rats that did nothing to deserve their fates. It’s this, his love of innocent animals and wariness of humans that he takes with him when he graduates with a Ph.D. in biology, concentrating in pathology.   I am not sure if you really need the above three lines here in their current form, it seems like interesting back story in the novel itself but doesn't seem important to the overall pace of the synopsis.  If you are trying to convey the mental conditioning the main character has undergone which drives him to create a terrible pathogen I think you should tie that in below.  Maybe a line about something his mother did that drove him to mess horribly with the human genome.  Otherwise I think you can cut it.

 

One day, he’s on the subway when the smell hits him. Some rich yuppie had drunk himself into a stupor, fell asleep, and shat himself. Such disregard. Such simple-minded idiocy. He’s filled with a rage that he’s never felt before. It takes over his mind and takes him to thoughts he shouldn’t have: if brains were bigger, maybe people would be smarter. He should make brains bigger.  Related to my point above, I don't buy that running into a smelly drunkard would drive him to create a genocidal disease, is there more to it?  Something his mother did or some impression on his childhood that would really spark the madness?  I think we are supposed to draw that from the above lines but I think in the synopsis it should be more direct.

 

The research begins. Combining diseases, picking and choosing traits for an abomination. He knows it’s dangerous and he should never have done it. He knows brains are sensitive and any change could cause massive damages. So he destroys it, all but one vial. Just enough to test it. But then, he misplaces it and prays that nothing will come of this carelessness. What is his mental state here?  Has he gone mad?  If so that would be cool but I'm not sure.  

 

Panic becomes relief that it’s gone. He and prays that nothing will come of this carelessness.

 

But two years later, he sees a headline: “Seven Dead from Mysterious Cause.” The effect: brains expand to enormous proportions, spilling out of the skull and pushing through eye sockets and ear canals.

 

For a moment, he feels proud of his scientific achievement before he realizes everything comes crashing back down. People have died people are dying and it’s his fault, or maybe not. After all, he never tested it.  I don't think you need this last bit in the synopsis, the point that he never tested it doesn't seem to be important, it is clear it is his fault from the lines below.  

 

Still, he panics and decides he needs isolation, only to be pulled back out by a phone call from an old classmate. She informs him that the disease has killed millions and she too has been infected and is to die in quarantine. She’s calling to ask him to join the team for the cure.

 

He hesitates. Even though he knows this is his fault, he doesn’t want to admit responsibility. But she was one of the few people who understood him, and he’s crushed that he’s responsible for her imminent demise. So, he agrees. He made the disease, he should be able to destroy it.  I think you can tighten these two lines up to something like this: He panics and seeks isolation from the carnage he invoked until he learns an old friend, someone who understood him better than anyone, is diagnosed with the disease and dying in quarantine.  He emerges from hiding determined now to help stop what he started. 

 

But he soon learns that it has mutated beyond anything he’s ever thought possible and finding a cure near impossible. All he can do is keep going, keep trying, and especially now that his father has been sent to quarantine too.

 

Days and weeks blur together and he feels himself breaking. It’s after he hears of his father’s death by his disease that he can’t take it anymore.

 

He wakes up in a hospital, the nurse informing him that he was found surrounded by a broken mirror, long gashes running down his arms.

 

He tries to leave, claiming he needs to return to work. But they refuse. He’s now infected and must be quarantined. One of his coworkers comes to argue his case, explaining that there’s so few of them left, it doesn’t matter who’s infected. Still, the hospital refuses.

 

Together, they escape, careening down hallways and through parking garages before reaching safety. And then it’s off to Chicago, where he searches for an answer where it all began.

 

Back in the library, the beautiful glass dome, he sits and watches the students, admiring their resilience in this health crisis. They’re still out and about, studying, complaining about exams, working late nights, just like he used to. And he realizes that he’s not making the cure for himself, for the people who have died, he’s making it for these students, for their future.

 

And suddenly, he knows what he’s been doing wrong.  What was it?  If it is important to the story tells us in the synopsis!

 

He rushes back to the lab and a flurry of experiments later, emerges with the cure!  The world it seems, will be saved after all. sends it off to be tested. And they wait. And wait.

 

At last, they get the call. Everything will be okay.

 

Now, he can finally cry for the billion lives he’s destroyed.  

 

In general I love the story line and I find myself wondering at the main character's mental state in the beginning that would set up the conditions for him to create something horrible.  It is clear he knows what he is doing is wrong so I think you should highlight that a little more.  Get us interested in his mental state maybe from what happened to him as a child and draw the clear line to event that forces him to create the monstrosity.

 

Hope this helps and good luck!






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