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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Critique/Review (for writers) (05/06/10)

TITLE: The Heart Of It All
By Carol Penhorwood


It now lies before me, been asked to review,
These manuscript pages that I must go through.
A story to edit, a poem to tweak,
They want my opinion, they want a critique.

I want to encourage and also to bless,
But the craft of the writing I'll have to assess.
Punctuation and grammar, the nouns and the verbs,
Are tenses correct in this sweet little blurb?

Is the topic on track? Did the sentence run-on?
Does it keep my attention or cause me to yawn?
Are the characters boring or do they delight,
Their dialogue true to the time frame they write?

If I give a synopsis, just what should I say?
They want it critiqued so my words I must weigh.
And giving opinions, critiques and reviews
Without bashing egos...just so hard to do.

I want to encourage and also to bless,
But the craft of the writing I still must assess.
Can it be made better? Can it be improved,
If this word was changed, or this sentence removed?

And who are the readers? Will this cast a spell?
Will the plot draw them in and the topic compel?
Does it build them up or the spirit tear down,
Does the ending result in a giant letdown?

Is the Spirit of God in the writing as well,
Does the craft become art in the story they tell?
Whatever the genre, does it honor God?
Would it have His approval, would Jesus applaud?

So I ask for Your wisdom as I turn the page
Reflecting Your thoughts as these words I engage.
Your Spirit, Your wisdom, is all that I need...
For the writer whose written may I intercede.

“And whatever you do—no matter what it is—in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus and in (dependence upon) His Person, giving praise to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:17 (Amplified Bible)

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This article has been read 651 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Benjamin Graber05/13/10
Good thoughts to consider while giving a critique. I know it is hard for me to measure how much I should say while still blessing and encouraging...
This is a good poem. I think it could be even more inspiring if you added some imagery to spice it up.
Thank you for blessing those around you - I hope I may be a blessing to you in return!
Dana McReynolds05/13/10
Nice poem, easy to read with a great message.
Marilyn Schnepp 05/15/10
Absolutely delightful, true, super, fantastic, perfectly rhymed, smooth reading and tells it like it is! Loved it! Great poem! Hits the nail on the head! Kudos, Kudos and a Standing ovation from this reader and fellow critiquer! (*.*)
Brenda Shipman 05/16/10
Amazing!! Totally loved this poem. Cannot find one single thing I'd change about it. Definitely inspired!
AnneRene' Capp05/17/10
Fabulous and so articulatory of your kind heart and intentions! (Hope I got that word right) :)
Verna Cole Mitchell 05/17/10
Critiquing is not easy to do, and you have expressed so well how the heart of the editor should be.
Ann Grover05/17/10
You've captured the heart of critiquing... honesty and encouragement, building up and not tearing down. We are a thin-skinned bunch, but if we are truthful, we all need gentle help.
Noel Mitaxa 05/17/10
I love how you've covered all the bases: of the content, the style, and the attitude of the critiqued writer within the attitude of the one giving the critique. Well done, Carol
Lyn Churchyard05/18/10
Rhythm and rhyme made this such a pleasure to read. The message contained was great. It's not easy to write a review/critique. Well done, with an attitude like that, you can critique me any time.
Beth LaBuff 05/18/10
This is sooo very good! You've incorporated all aspects of critiquing so skillfully in this excellent poem. And, of course, this is my heart too, "I want to encourage and also to bless," Love this!
Marijo Phelps05/19/10
Great poem with useful suggestions and insights!
Patricia Turner05/19/10
I'd love your critique of my writing in this spirit. I love your poem and its great message - everything we do we should do in His spirit.
Carole Robishaw 05/19/10
Great thoughts, and even better set in rhyme. Great listing of things we all need to keep in mind as we write.
Brenda Shipman 05/20/10
Congratulations, Carol, for placing in the top 30, as well as #12 for Level 3, with this beautiful poem. I THINK IT DESERVED AN EDITOR'S CHOICE AWARD! Just wanted you to know that! :) BECAUSE I LOVED THIS ENTRY!
Ruth Stromquist06/02/10
Your so good at summarizing the most important points of a topic and wrapping them into poetry and rhyme so beautifully. This one was a joy to read! Congratulations on your high placing!