I'm Vera Brook, the author of the story, super-excited to share it with you all and hear what you think.
I'm a fan of Kurt Vonnegut, and Music Therapy is my attempt at a Vonnegut-like story. I failed, of course (only Vonnegut can write like Vonnegut). But it was a blast to meet these characters.
Music Therapy is inspired by neuroscience research on the therapeutic effects of acupuncture, meshed with lab politics & a secret romance. (I'm a neuroscientist by training, although not doing research anymore.)
If you have a chance to read it, let me know your thoughts. I'm open to any feedback. I'm always learning and working to improve my writing craft.
Best of luck with your own writing & publishing.
Vibroacoustic? Interesting since I was a musician—still sing in a barbershop chorus—and often heard vibrations on windows and fixtures sometime during rehearsal time. Usually, the tubas and base trombones generated that type of noise.
In Vietnam I played in a division band, and during one rehearsal in which I play horn in a woodwind quintet, we rehearsed outside down by the bunker line. Before we knew it, water buffalos wandered over and listened to us!!! We were really taken by surprise, but they were on the other side of the concertina wire. We just played on with them listening!!
Audio music can change our moods, help us learn, relax us, and inspire us. Stephen King plays loud rock music often when he writes. The great composers are a gift from God to us in my opinion.
This story is a good mixture of science fact and science fiction which is very enjoyable to me. Old Mr. Ostrovsky, a retired lawyer, is being treated with Vibroacoustics but his numbers improve when he listens to audible music which is illegal in the time frame of this story.
The story unfolds with Kira the one treating Mr. Ostrovshy and her wife Darcy who also works at the institute are shocked at how the audible music helped the patient but also scared them because it is illegal to listen to music.
The writing is good in this story, the sensory input there, and the dialogue good.
A nice balance between show and tell and a good use of sensory input in a dual method.
In the sentence ‘The room emptied, but Kira stood frozen,’ we see how the word ‘frozen’ is very effective in showing how Kira felt and making us feel the cold reception from her boss because another company beat them. Her boss in so many words told them to work harder!
The interactions between Kira and Darcy add to the human touch in this story, and their dialogue between them very believable and not just thrown together.
To recap: Very good story with all the correct techniques mixture together
I worked hard on making the science part coherent & believable (as much as possible). But the characters were my favorite part. They quickly took on lives of their own, and after that, I was merely eavesdropping.
A fun fact: The original story was nearly 16,000 words but with feedback from my writer friends, I cut it down to just barely under 10,000 in the current (and final) version. A painful process, but I think the story is stronger for it.
Thank you again for reading, and all the best,