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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: The Manuscript (04/29/10)

TITLE: Making Time
By Mitzi Moody


Making Time

It's easy to become obsessed about manuscript preparation. Try not to spend a lot of time worrying about what font to use or how much space your margins need. As long as you stick to a few basic guidelines, your manuscript will more than likely be acceptable. Two of the biggest things to remember when writing a manuscript is to include your contact information and secondly, be sure your facts are pertinent to the time and place you are writing about
I find when writing a manuscript, researching of the time period is the most enjoyable part. Recently I had the opportunity to interview a 92-year old
gentleman for some manuscript research I am doing. He was a scholar on the small train, the town and the era I was researching. He could remember vivid details of the late 1800’s but he could not recall what he had eaten for breakfast.
He told of how the train cars were decorated with dark green walls and red leather seats. The mail car carried all of the mail to each small town along the route. He remembered gentlemen in dark suits and black derby hats stepping off the train, “Some carrying flip top packs of Cavalier cigarettes in their white shirt pockets.”
Oh, how times have changed! Just think how much easier we have it with all or modern technologies that speed things up. How would you like to hand write your manuscripts just like monks did, back in the day. Yea for modern times!

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Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 05/06/10
You give some good advice but it read like an essay. You used the word manuscript at least 6 times. However your part about interviewing the 92 year old man was interesting and full of vivid descriptions. I wish you had included more of this sort of character into your work. You left me longing to know more about who and what you've written. Keep writing it is evident that you enjoy your craft.
Mildred Sheldon05/06/10
I enjoyed reading your article, but one thing I find useful when writing is separating paragraphs by one space. It makes anything easier to follow. Otherwise a very well written piece. Thank you and God bless.
Caitlyn Meissner05/07/10
I still write my stories out on paper sometimes. It's a good thing to practice. However, I'm glad I have a modern pen, and don't have to make my own ink like the monks did. Interesting article.
AnneRene' Capp05/07/10
You are so right about researching the time and place. I've had fun doing it myself and have learned so very much which is exciting in itself. I would have loved to have chatted with that 92 year old man and relived his memories with him. I could almost feel his delight in reminiscing!
Jan Ackerson 05/07/10
Interesting essay!

A few suggestions: go to the forums (link at the top of the page) and read through a few of the threads, especially those in the "Writing" and "Writing Challenge" message boards. You'll get a great idea there of what 'works' in the Writing Challenge. And you might like to read through 2 or 3 of the top placers each week, too.

This is really good writing--I'd love to know more about the 92-year-old man, and also about the tedium of copying out MSs by hand. Keep writing--I expect we'll be seeing really good things from you.