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

TITLE: The Demise of Tallulah Mae Crawford
By Dana McReynolds


Tallulah Mae Crawford departed the literary world on April 4, 2010. The concoction of an aspiring writer, she was conceived on July 19, 2007 after his whirlwind vacation to Savannah, Georgia. She is survived by her author, Raymond Allen of Brooklyn, New York.

Miss Crawford resided in an unpublished work entitled “Sweet Tea and Magnolia Trees”. A true southern belle, Tallulah Mae graced the manuscript with beauty and poise. Her parents owned a large plantation complete with an antebellum mansion. Tallulah Mae was often seen sitting on the veranda entertaining potential suitors from all over southeast Georgia. Rumor has it that she rejected all of them in hopes of charming a timid young man that lived on a Vidalia onion farm a few counties over.

The cotillion ball held in her honor was a magnificent affair. Though there were a handful of other fine debutantes who made their entrance into society that evening, Tallulah Mae stole the show. Folks estimated that it must have taken at least 3 people to tie her corset, giving her a 17 inch waist. Tallulah Mae quietly confessed to the other girls that she gave up grits and cornbread for three months to achieve this feat.

Mr. Allen considered this composition his greatest achievement. He was eager to share it with others, knowing it would receive rave reviews. The writing group Raymond belonged to was fortunate to possess an actual employee of a publishing company. All drafts were presented to Leonard Dinardo for a complimentary analysis.

The critique Raymond received was far from stellar. Leonard was concerned that the main character was too stereotypical. He recommended adding some unexpected twists and providing Tallulah Mae with more depth. The readers already knew her and would lose interest in the story. A suggestion was made to present them with a fresh take on the typical southern belle that would surprise and enthrall them.

This news was devastating to Raymond. He was certain that Tallulah Mae was perfect just as he had created her. Making any changes to this beautiful character was out of the question. Raymond promptly erased all traces of her and decided to keep Tallulah Mae in his imagination, safe from all criticism.

Leonard and the rest of the writing group noticed an increasingly strange behavior in Raymond. Some speculated that he was brokenhearted over the loss of Tallulah Mae. Others were afraid he would give up writing all together. However, all of them were taken aback when Raymond began dropping the contraction “y’all” in his everyday conversations. Little did they know that he ordered his very own seersucker suit just last week.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Gregory Kane05/16/10
I thought that this was a clever take on the topic and I couldn't identify with the pain felt by the author. I'm sorry to say that you lost me in your final paragraph. I completely missed the relevance of the seersucker suit.
Brenda Shipman 05/16/10
Fun, fun, fun entry! Love the title, and loved the ending. It would appear that the author was either chanelling Tallulah, and/or was chanelling one of her suitors. (I assume that seersucker suits were common back in the day in the south?) Too funny!