Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Week 10 has been conquered! If you haven't yet read the entries, you can find them here. Seriously, go follow that link and leave some love of your own! Comments are always appreciated. Certainty or uncertainty...that is the question. Well, one thing we ARE certain about is PenName's decision. The judge has spoken! ...And if I just stop typing you can read what he said... But I'm feeling ornery today... Are you still reading this? Are you certain? Just checking. Oh, alright! Go read what he had to say:

What a drop this week, only four. (sadness) But, I'm excited that I was allowed to judge the entries this week. Below are some of my thoughts about each of your entries. I tried to be constructive, but keep in mind that I am a very critical person, (people hate handing me their papers to read because I will usually tear them apart) so realize that I am just being my usual fault-finding self. (That was literally one of the descriptors on a personality test I took once, fault-finding! Gee thanks.)

Sorry, I've rambled. I loved reading all your stories and seeing how you took the first sentence and just ran with it. I really do consider it a pleasure to give you guys my thoughts and award a winner, so without further ceremony, here are the results.

I really like how the characters in this story went from being vastly uncertain about what was going to happen, to being wrong and then being certain of everything. I was a little bit confused by some of the language used to describe some things - “ 20,000 years in the making” and “billions of years into the distance;” and “moments passed in an instant.” But, perhaps that was the point, giving a sense that time and space wasn't exactly what it seemed. I was not sure what was meant by “explored the very limits of our peculiar nature.” But, all in all, I loved the idea of being at the end of the world, the end of time, the end of the universe, that brink. But, now I want to know what happened in that instant, and what will happen next, you've left me thirsty for more.

I don't feel that the first sentence had a lot to do with the subject matter of the story, though the story itself was certainly one we can all relate to – man, have I had those days! I was a little confused by the switching of tenses and there were a couple of times where I had to go back and reread because I didn't follow it the first time. At the end I was expecting some sort of crisis moment, where the ordeals of the day finally coalesced into some sort of drastic action or climax. They were resolved to a certain extent, but my expectation was for something a bit more. All that said, I felt the pain of Evangeline, and each moment through the day, I was rooting for her and hoping for something to get better for her character. Keep writing!

Grand Champion Runner-Up:
I loved this take on the first sentence. There were some wonderful descriptors of the kitchen and I like how almost the whole time the husband just wasn't exactly sure what had gone wrong, though it had seemed that he had tried to do everything right. I also like the hint of relationship issues that were larger than the cooking incident itself. The husband's reaction said a lot about his character and the way things currently were between them.

Grand Champion and Special Challenge Winner:

Rebekah Postupak
This was a feast of words! The descriptors were fast and furious and the sentences long and meandering. Dense reading, but I love dense reading, so that's fine with me. I particularly liked the use of the challenge words; so natural and unforced, it fit right into the text and enhanced the flow of the story. Of course I also loved the characters and the potential story here. I was ready to read about his quest to avenge his love, and was interested in the particulars of her death. I thought this was a brilliant use of the lead sentence and a beautiful and interesting story.


  1. Congratulations, Postupak!! A well deserved win. I may be a bit partial, though, because you always get my vote. ;)

    PenName, thanks for the constructive criticism. I have lots of friends to encourage me, and plenty of confidence. What I need, and am finding more of lately, are people like you who keep me grounded. I greatly appreciate the tips I've been getting lately. Your advice will help me in my quest to improve as a writer. Being a fault-finder isn't necessarily a bad thing. I'd be happy to have you take a red pen to my WiPs any time. I tend to choke my inner critic when he tries to speak up, but I promise I wouldn't do that to you. ;)

    Thanks for hosting Alissa! Looking forward to next week!

  2. Thanks Aaron, and thanks to everyone for your nice comments!!! (SMOOCHES to Jessica!! you are always so sweet to me.) My story was definitely a different writing style than I normally do--this week's prompt offered a wonderfully challenging and border-stretching opportunity. Thanks as ever to Alissa for the fun game.