Happy New Year!!! Thanks for all who turned out for our last competition of 2014! The judge had a little extra time to work around holiday plans, but he got his comments to me this morning. Then I was out all day. Ah well, you have his decisions now. If you missed any of the stories, go here to read all the entries. Now read what the judge had to say:
Welcome to the last Finish that Thought for 2014 / the first judging of 2015. Apologies for the delay in judging, I was weighing if I should proclaim my love for the stories or face the consequences. Thankfully, for yours truly, the stories were amazing.
Something in the threat line that takes people to deities and dragons.
What a fantastic take on the brackets in the prompts. An alien contact story from that prompt — great imagination.
Wow what visuals, “the 100 year old, half blind, obese kelpie dog onto me”. This does a wonderful job of getting us into the head of the Queen. A wee bit of punctuation errors, but the story is lovely.
“The seed planted in pain strives to bloom.” Chills. Fantastic voice captures the epic feel. Amazing how “big” this feels in four-hundred words.
You just rewrote science class. I loved this from the start, and it kept building throughout. It invoked images of American Gods in my mind — and that’s a wonderful thing.
Master storytelling. I can’t help but picture the grandfather from Princess Bride reading the story. You know a story works when you have concern for characters, here’s hoping Tommy shrugs it off.
The devotees commit suicide instead of denouncing their faith. What a great take on the prompt. You did a great job invoking the battles of the Reformation.
A work so compelling I caught myself reading it aloud. This is a masterclass in how to quickly establish a conflicted character. The preciseness of language is startling.
I’m still snickering at the gourdan. I read that and thought it was a typo, then the next line delivers how wonderful it is. A stabbing eight-year-old, I love it. Very fun and quirky story.
This story switches from a romance, to a stalker-story, to a touching reunion so fast that the transformation is breathtaking.
Either there was a draft when I read the ending of this or you were able to draw out goosebumps. Well played. I love how Ben is the one who did the forgiving and was the agent of change.
Dragons! Love the dragon throwing down the threat. There are some amazing lines here, “ruling this world with iron and petals”. “Or Not” is a great second line. This piece sounds like it could power a whole book.
“And before you knew it, I was sitting there in reflective dialogue.” Hahahaha. I’m still snickering at this. Experimental fiction is such a joy to read. On reread, this brings to mind Fight Club.
“Yes, what would be the point of letting you live if you are not going to serve me?” Indeed. Fantastic fiction. Great job incorporating the evil and good tales. I knew where this was going and still loved going on the ride. Wonderful story.
The dragons are out in force this week. How fun to be the sacrificial maiden given to the dragon (at least, I read it as a dragon). The final line leaves me wanting to know if she felt love or if that is the flames coming.
Special Challenge Champion: Lady Rosewood by @JentopiaWrites. Risk meet reward. The father and daughter have a chance to rekindle their relationship in a heartwarming story.
Grand Champion: Suzie Jay.
I can’t help but love the charm of this piece. I read it aloud and my daughter said how much she loved it. This takes me back to the magic of finding “secret chambers”. What a fun way to start the year