The Official Writing Challenge
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I really got into the mood of your story. And I must say, the answer to the mystery made me smile. The story progressed at a good pace and was very enjoyable to read. I especially liked how it left off on that powerful note. Excellent work!
05/07/10
Oooo, I got shivers reading this but it could be that I'm newly showered, laying in bed with the fan on. lol. Love it. Such an air of mystery. Very good story and I love the ending, too!
05/07/10
oohh... love the mystery you create with the juxtapostion of the manuscript and the markers. Your ending was haunting! Great work!
You combines mystery and message for a very interesting story. Well done.
oops...combined
05/11/10
I would love to read an expanded version of this... was it real? what did they do with it? I enjoyed it very much.
05/11/10
Interesting! I wish you could develop this more.
05/12/10
The great thing about this is the mystery that kept me reading to find the answer. The frustrating thing is that there were too many questions you didn't answer. What epidemic? Why an elementary school room? Wouldn't it have been more logical to find the manuscript in a high school classroom? Who were Melody and Jake and what were they doing there?

But I loved your use of the manuscript to show how someone was seeking and finding the answers. The gospel in a nutshell. And Foxe's Book of Martyrs - what a great book for that purpose.
05/12/10
I love the idea behind the story.
I feel like the relationship of Jake/Melody needed to told. Paragraph 4, She shrugged...is hard to follow. The next paragraph uses the word 'harkened' when another might do better.
When using a colon, the unit on the left must be a complete clause.
I, too, wondered why this priceless original writing was in a children's classroom and needed more info on the epidemic and how that plays into the story.

Mona
A very intriguing read. I loved the way you were able to get into the very depth of the original writer's soul by these words: Melody broke the silence. "Sounds like she was searching, doesn't it?"
My one red ink would be to expand the setting so the reader gets a better idea of who//what/when/where and why. Other than that, top-notch writing.
05/12/10
The concept of someone writing on an apparently priceless manuscript horrified me! I agree with the comments about needing much more information. Your use of the word "glided" was a curious one.
05/12/10
YAY! Joanne is here.

I enjoyed this. Love the idea.

I actually kind of like that it was set in an elementary school. I felt the markers and ladybug beanbag chair were a great contrast to the old manuscript.

Where I felt it got a little muddled up was in the why and who and where... who are they/where are they/ why are they there? The single mention of the epidemic only raised more questions.

Loved the ending. Very personal touch.

Repeat

YAY! Joanne is here. :)
05/12/10
Yay, Joanne!
Very intriguing, I want to know more...who are the two reading the manuscript and who left it and why for starters :-) Are you thinking novel?
05/12/10
I like the approach of this story. Your style gripped me and had me trying to solve the mystery myself. I do agree that some of the action words tripped me a little bit. Only a little.
Good entry.
05/12/10
I liked this. I love mysteries, and this is a great one to think about.
05/12/10
I would love to read more! This has all the elements for a great novel!
Great job Joanne :)

Very interesting read ... I really liked it a lot.
05/12/10
I think all the who, what, where, why questions in this short story just made me want to read more. Isn't that what a writer was supposed to do?..so, yes, expand it please.
05/12/10
Wow, Joanne, I think this may be the first one of your stories that I've read. This is really intriguing! My many unanswered questions only make it more fascinating... I love mysteries! Well done, and very moving!
06/04/10
So much here. The setting was intriguing, the relationship between the two speaking characters hinted at and sparking my interest and the manuscript - well, how mysterious was all of that!!! I want more! Um, please. I love your writing Jo, soft and flowing but with just enough edge to make me need more. Did I mention more??? :)
06/08/10
I agree that you need more information about the people and the epidemic, I did understand that the margin notes were made by a writer searching to learn, like me.
really liked the story idea tho. Book?