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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: The Critique/Review (for writers) (05/06/10)

TITLE: A Critique from the Master
By Mildred Sheldon


Annie came from a poor God fearing family, and college was just a dream for her brothers and sisters, but because of sheer determination Annie worked her way through college paying for everything without borrowing a dime. She trusted in the Master and her faith in Him gave her all she needed to persevere, and become the best of the best in her chosen field.

Annie was the best manuscript critic to be found in the literary world. She had studied hard in college, and knew what to look for when she critiqued manuscripts. She started out at the bottom and through hard work climbed the ladder of success.

Two years after graduation with her masters degree from one of the most prestigious literary colleges Annie started her own business. She had not looked back from whence she had come or the obstacles she had overcome.

On her polished oak desk sat a plaque with the words from Hebrews 5:3-5. Annie read that every morning and praised the Master. His Words was Annie’s life line.

Annie was sought-after and her time was valuable. Her services were expensive, but it had taken years for her to attain that status. Her clients were world renowned authors and poets. Annie was well acquainted with the writing style of each author and poet.

Annie’s desk was always piled high with manuscripts and she worked from sun rise to sunset. Her assistant, Julie, kept Annie supplied with cold water, fruit snacks, and would rub Annie’s aching neck and shoulders when she saw Annie wince in pain.

Annie had just finished proofing the last manuscript on her desk. She put it down, sat back in her big chair rubbing her eyes as she slowly rolled her neck in a clock wise motion. Her eyes ached from staring at manuscripts. A break was long overdue, and Annie stretched out her swollen legs trying to get blood flowing into her numb limbs.

As soon as Annie pushed back from her desk Julie came running. She had a cool clothe for Annie’ weary eyes, leg wraps with built in massagers, cool water, fruit snacks and anything she could think of to help Annie. Julie loved being Annie’s assistant, and being mentored by Annie was an extra perk. Over the years Annie had many assistants mentoring each one, and after each assistant graduated Annie hired them to be a part of her firm.

Annie had a soft spot for Julie, because Julie reminded her of herself. Julie came from a poor family, and college was just a dream, but Julie was willing to pay the price. Julie was graduating in six months, and Annie knew Julie would become the best of the best of all her predecessors. Annie smiled lovingly at Julie, and told her all manuscripts were ready to be sent out. Julie placed all manuscripts in the prepared envelopes, and told Annie she would drop them in the mail slot on her way home.

Six months passed quickly and Julie was now part of Annie’ firm. Annie always presented a plaque to each employee with words of encouragement from the Bible. Julie’s plaque was taken from James 1:2-4 which bought tears to Julie’s eyes. Julie lovingly hugged Annie, and gave her kiss on her cheek.

Time passed quickly, and at age 75 Annie was bone weary. Julie had exceeded Annie’ expectations and had assumed full responsibility of running the firm. Annie couldn’t have been more pleased with the way things had turned out. Annie lifted her eyes towards heaven and gave thanks and glory to Jesus, her beloved Master.

Annie willed the firm to Julie as she closed her eyes upon this earth for the last time. When Annie’ eyes focused she was standing before the Lord. She saw a large manuscript of her life in Jesus’ hand. Her life’s manuscript was a multitude of brilliant colors as well as muted ones, and she saw one set of footsteps on many pages. She knew instantly those pages were when she wasn’t able to carry on, and Jesus carried her in His loving arms. She gazed lovingly into her Masters eyes and heard Him say. “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!”

Scripture Matthew 25:21 NIV

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This article has been read 425 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Janice Samuelson05/13/10
This was really beautiful, it brought tears to my eyes. Thanks for the blessing!
Lisha Hunnicutt05/13/10
Touching story, but I do have a suggestion. There are many places where Annie or Julie was used over and over and became a bit distracting. I think it could be smoothed out by replacing some of them with pronouns. The plot was very good though.
AnneRene' Capp05/13/10
What a refreshing take on the topic and so very well written. It was engaging and touching. Especially liked your phrase: as she closed her eyes upon this earth for the last time.

I suspect this will be your last article in level 2. :)
Caitlyn Meissner05/14/10
I enjoyed this. I thought it would be the story of Annie's life, but I liked how you made it about Julie, too. The ending was very touching. I think every Christian desires to get a favorable review from our Master.
K.D. Manes05/20/10
I loved how you used Annie's life as the manuscript. Thank you for the inspiring story! Congratulations on "Highly Recommended."