The Unconscious ESCAPE

Brenda Ruppert Bunkers

Book Cover

GENRE

ACTION ADVENTURE DRAMA FAMILY ROMANCE SUSPENSE/THRILLER YOUNG ADULT

    Core Theme

    INTERNAL JOURNEY. TRUE FRIENDSHIP. CONFIDENCE.

    TIME PERIOD

    1980s & '90s

    COMPARABLE TITLES

    THE NEVERENDING STORY, RAMONA AND BEEZUS

    CHARACTER LIST

    BENNY. 7-17. A SHY AND ANXIOUS LITTLE GIRL THAT TURNED INTO A CONFIDENT AND BRAVE YOUNG WOMAN..

    MIA. BENNY'S OLDER SISTER.

    WILL. BENNY'S FIRST CRUSH.

    DARCY. BENNY'S BEST FRIEND IN COLLEGE.

    MS. DRAKE. BENNY'S PIANO TEACHER WHO ABUSES HER.

    MS. KELLY. THERAPIST WHO TREATS BENNY’S TRAUMAS.

    Logline

    As the story unfolds, the fainting spells get more frequent, making it difficult for Benny to survive in the school without being embarrassed to her core. Her anxiety starts getting the best of her and the frequent fainting spells during lectures drift her friends away from her.

    Target Audiences

    Age: 13-17,18-34,35-54,55+

    Target Gender: Universal,Other

    Setting

    Iowa & Chicago

    Based on a True Story

    No

    Publishing Details

    Status: Yes: with a Publisher

    Publisher: Content Development Pros

    Year Published: 2019

    Starting Description

    Every day, the students pass comments on her and make fun of her, making it difficult for Benny to continue her studies. Meanwhile, her crush on Will and her love for music prove to be something she can fall back on after a disturbing day and keep her distracted.

    Ending Description

    When men and women in the shopping mall can’t think of anything other than their children’s and their own safety and when the security guards are busy locking the doors to prevent the terrorists from entering or leaking the gas in the mall, Benny comes up with a life-saving idea!

    Group Specific

    Information not completed

    Hard Copy Available

    No

    ISBN

    9781676245049

    Mature Audience Themes

    Extreme Violence

    Plot - Other Elements

    Meaningful Message,Happy Ending,Twist

    Plot - Premise

    Tragedy,Internal Journey/Rebirth,Overcoming Monster/Villain

    Main Character Details

    Name: Benny

    Age: 7

    Gender: Female

    Role: Emotional

    Key Traits: Adventurous,Complex,Insecure,Heroic,Faithful,Honorable,Romantic,Selfless,Religious,Strong Moral Code

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Will

    Age: 10

    Gender: Male

    Role: Mentor

    Key Traits: Adventurous,Charming,Masculine,Obedient,Confident,Sexy,Gracious,Heartthrob,Heroic,Educated,Skillful,Strong Moral Code,Leader

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Darcy

    Age: 18 - Benny meets Darcy in her collage years.

    Gender: Female

    Role: mentor

    Key Traits: Adventurous,Aspiring,Aggressive,Charming,Confident,Outspoken,Gracious,Educated,Leader

    Additional Character Details

    Name: Frank - Benny's Dad

    Age: 40

    Gender: Male

    Role: mentor

    Key Traits: Masculine,Charming,Obedient,Confident,Religious,Skillful,Funny,Educated,Honorable

    Genre

    ACTION, SUSPENSE, ROMANCE, DRAMA

    Brief

    Benny is a 7-year-old girl who faints every time she feels nervous or anxious for no apparent reason. Due to these episodes, she starts losing friends and being rejected by her classmates. The determination to keep going grows when she meets Will, a boy who will make her feel confident; Ms. Kelly, a therapist who’s gonna treat her traumas; and Darcy, her best friend in college. With their help and her family's support, she will come up with a plan that will save hundreds of lives in a terrorist attack.

    Overall Rating

    FAIR

    Point of View

    FIRST PERSON

    Narrative Elements

    Authors Writing Style: FAIR

    Characterization: FAIR

    Commerciality: FAIR

    Franchise Potential: FAIR

    Pace: FAIR

    Premise: FAIR

    Structure: FAIR

    Theme: FAIR

    Accuracy of Book Profile

    Not exactly. The Logline could be more descriptive, and the Short Summary doesn't provide a clear picture of the story.

    Draw of Story

    The story has clear positive messages about choosing kindness, gratitude to appreciate your family, and true friendship, teaching children about confidence, using imagination, and overcoming failures. Empathy and perseverance are also strong themes.

    Possible Drawbacks

    The premise of a girl who faints in certain situations and the promise of the main character coming up with a life-saving idea during a terrorist attack intrigues audiences and sparks their curiosity. Although, as the story unfolds, it is unfortunate that the narrative lacks more dramatic developments to fulfill the audience's expectations. Also, the revelation that everything was just a dream is disappointing and a bit dull for the finale. It would be interesting to watch her grow determined to overcome obstacles in her path, deliver a strong message of resilience and gratitude to appreciate family, and follow dreams.

    Use of Special Effects

    THE STORY DOES NOT RELY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

    Primary Hook of Story

    The idea about a girl who faints under certain circumstances coming up with a life-saving idea during a terrorist attack is fascinating. There's an opportunity to address positive lessons about perseverance, empathy, true friendship, and the importance of the family and offer an empowering message to those who have been bullied or abused.

    Fanbase Potential

    It's not a story for fanbases; however, the narrative about a little girl who endures bullying and abuse is captivating and sure to draw the audience.

    Awards Potential

    It is possible to tell this story to catch the attention of the Awards, since there’s an opportunity to address positive messages about choosing kindness, gratitude to appreciate family and true friendship, teaching children and teenagers about confidence, using imagination, and overcoming failures. These factors can make people identify with his story.

    Envisioned Budget

    MEDIUM BUDGET

    Similar Films/TV Series

    THE NEVERENDING STORY, RAMONA AND BEEZUS

    What’s New About the Story

    It's compelling and captivating the premise about how an ordinary 7-year-old girl overcomes traumas and, a bit older, turns them into a weapon to save the lives of hundreds of people, becoming the epitome of bravery and heroism. Even so, it would be more unique if everything was real rather than just a dream, as she is just a little girl undergoing fantasy situations she does not fully experience.

    Lead Characters

    The characters seem very real as they go about their routines. Benny is a sweet girl facing tough situations, such as bullying and violent abuse, yet she learns how to turn this into strength and determination. Darcy is also a good character, bringing excitement and fun to Benny’s life. Ms. Drake could be better developed as a villain since she's a strong character.

    Uniqueness of Story

    This is a great story targeted at young audiences and has the potential to become an engaging and unique narrative. Still, there is room for improvement when it comes to dramatic developments, subverting expectations, and creating a more original ending.

    Possible Formats

    Film: Studio, Indie, Streaming TV Series: Limited Run / Mini-Series

    Analyst Recommendation

    WORK IN PROGRESS

    Justification

    This story has an intriguing plot, good characters, and great potential for development. Yet, it needs improvement in how it subverts the expectations of the audience. The revelation that all the situations were just a dream is disappointing and dull for the finale. This makes all the narrative unreal and insignificant, as the audience realizes the protagonist's stories are fictional, based on someone without firsthand knowledge of the events described, including sessions with a therapist.

    Tips for Improvement

    It would be interesting watching her grow determined to overcome obstacles in her path and develop into a strong woman after surviving so many challenges. It would also be interesting exploring subtle foreshadowing to enhance the dramatic tension throughout the narrative.

    Brief

    Benny is a 7-year-old girl who faints every time she feels nervous or anxious for no apparent reason. Due to these episodes, she starts losing friends and being rejected by her classmates. The determination to keep going grows when she meets Will, a boy who will make her feel confident; Ms. Kelly, a therapist who’s gonna treat her traumas; and Darcy, her best friend in college. With their help and her family's support, she will come up with a plan that will save hundreds of lives in a terrorist attack.

    What We Liked

    The story has clear positive messages about choosing kindness, gratitude to appreciate family, and true friendship, teaching children and teenagers about confidence, using imagination, and overcoming failures. Perseverance and empathy are also strong themes.

    Film: As a movie, Benny's story can be told as a live-action or animation film targeted at young audiences. The narrative offers an empowering message to those who have been bullied or abused. A few scenarios relevant to this age group could be explored cinematographic, such as the school/college, the 4H meetings (although the book barely explores these), and amusement parks.

    TV: Benny's story would make a great limited or mini-series. Along with her family relationship, a number of other events could be explored in different episodes: her first fainting spell, the 4H meetings, her piano teacher's abuse, her visits to Dr. Kelly, her friendship with Darcy, and ultimately, the revelation that everything was only a dream. There's an opportunity to address a powerful message, especially for teenagers, of resilience, gratitude to appreciate your family and follow your dreams.

    Key points:
    Strong female characters.
    Empowering message.
    Plot twist.
    Social issues addressed.
    Young adult audience.

    Synopsis

    Benny, a 7-year-old girl, can’t find a reason for her fainting spells. Her fainting episodes became more consistent after her Grandpa R’s funeral. There was no public place left where she hadn’t fainted at least once, especially in the classroom. Her friends were bullying her, and she was being taunted. Thanks to Will, a boy who woke her during one of her episodes, she had stopped sulking about being rejected by her classmates.

    She began taking piano lessons with Ms. Drake as a way to escape the idea of being bullied. The teacher was kind and sweet in the initial days, but a few months later, her attitude changed. She would tap Benny’s fingers with a pencil whenever she hit a wrong note. Benny started being anxious again and, on the day of her first recital, she fainted.

    After that, Benny was late for her piano lessons, running to Ms. Drake’s house. The teacher hit Benny with a golf stick that day, slapped her in the cheek, then punched her in the face. Ms. Drake left Benny lying on the floor, crying hysterically and bleeding. To treat her trauma, her family put her in touch with a therapist, Ms. Kelly.

    Time passed, and Benny went to her dream college in Iowa. Running to attend her first class, she met a girl named Darcy. Their friendship grew stronger. Darcy invited Benny to visit her family in Chicago and stay for some days.

    Once in Chicago, Benny and Darcy went to a shopping mall. Benny was amazed by the huge place when she saw a large group of people running toward the mall’s entrance in panic. Something was wrong. On TV in the mall, they saw that the city was being targeted with some toxic gas by a group of terrorists. Through the glass window, they saw terrorists in hazmat suits. Benny had an idea and ran to the microphone to make an announcement. She suggested that the crowd drop to the floor, acting as if they’re fainted to trick the terrorists. So they did, and the terrorists left, thinking they were dead. She saved everybody. When everything passed, she saw a group of men and women walking towards her cheering her. She was their hero. When she returned home, Will called her, saying he saw her on the TV news about the Chicago incident and let her know that he was back in the city to visit.

    Some days passed, and suddenly she fainted. While she was waking up, her father explained that she passed out at the church during Grandpa R’s funeral. So she realized it was all just a dream. She was still a 7-year-old little girl who unconsciously escaped embarrassing moments of fainting and had no Darcy or Will in her real life.

    About The Author

    Brenda Ruppert Bunkers grew up in Mallard, Iowa. Her memories as a small child in a Church on Sunday mornings triggered her to write a story based on an "unsolicited problem" with an added twist of fiction.