The Official Writing Challenge
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Humorous with a good message. One thing I noticed (wasn't really reading to critique, just for fun) "tooth pick-built" should be "toothpick-built". Thanks for sharing!
This was really great! I really liked how you started out and then the abrupt halt and the reality check. Made me laugh several times and brought back memories of why I now have an artificial tree!! :) Nice lesson at the end. It works all the way around. Great job!
12/12/05
What a nice story! I could relate with the not so perfect Christmases! Your voice could be heard and felt throughout and you tied it in so nicely at the end. :)
12/12/05
I enjoyed your story very much! Being fairly new, I wondered about the last paragraph - talking to the reader - perhaps it should be what the author plans to do rather than telling the reader what they should do? Just asking. I really liked
"We try so hard to make the outward appearance look good, but underneath we’re hanging on by a string." And tying this in to the tree being secured with a string. Good job!
I too liked this one. Reminds me of my dad hiking all over our land looking for the perfect tree. We never had one, but had good laughs over the ones we got. Thanks for shariing and for the reminder of what's important.
12/14/05
I like this; I chuckled when you switched us from the "ideal" to "what really happened."

Consider paring back your conclusion--eliminate pars. 23, 24, and 26. Might tighten up the piece a bit.

Note: "cocoa", not "coco."

The first half, with the family memories, is utterly charming.
12/15/05
Delightful, witty and a fun read. I envy your memories of the yearly family search for a Christmas tree...something we never had. Good Job, well done!
12/19/05
Congratulations! I suggest you DO NOT eliminate one paragraph or one word!! You won with your piece exactly as written! Great Job!! Bravo!