The Official Writing Challenge
This article has been read 888 times
Member Comments
Member
Date
01/14/16
Hymns have powerful messages. I enjoy reading the story behind them.
A powerful story, simply told. I noticed especially that neither the the missionary or the names of the people were known.Their rewards in heaven will be great, and what a great lesson they are able to teach us.
01/14/16
This is so well written. Thank you for explaining this powerful moment in history.
No red ink for you today.
01/17/16
Great job. I was challenged by your story.
01/18/16
Thank you for your submission! It sent chills down my arm! A very powerful example of sacrificial love!
01/19/16
Powerful and so moving as are a lot of the hymns in terms of history.

Great job~

God bless~
01/19/16
Wonderful story that makes me question my courage...especially watching a family member die over my conviction. Would I have that courage today? It is something to truly think about in today's times. Well told too.
I really liked how you brought this song alive with your story. Many would be tempted to have God stop the arrows from hurting, especially, the children, but you held true to the facts as you know them, and that is inspirational and not easy to do.

You did have quite a few POV shifts. It can be a hard concept to understand, especially when writing in the third person. I remember thinking I could peek into all character's heads if I wrote in the third person. (There is a third person omniscient POV, but it's generally considered outdated.) Another way to do it would be to use stars to separate the changes; however, I would suggest telling it from the chief's POV. For example:
The chief watched the villagers walk away, scratching their heads while murmuring, "One god? What about the others? Our ancestors have worshiped them for ages. What will happen to us if we abandon them?"
Those questions tormented the chief too. Why is Aadi and his family so happy?
Fear and anger bubbled in the chief's stomach as he watched the inevitable happen. Some tribesmen believed, and the testimony spread.
Alarmed, the chief demanded Aadi and his family to appear before him. He knew they wouldn't refuse him; when they arrived, huddled together, he felt his shoulders relax. I've got them now. Surely, he'll recant his testimony to save his wife and children.

I know I took some liberties, but tried to stay true to most of your words to show you what I mean. Something else I did was to change the passive lines into active ones. Using active lines, body language, dialog, and thoughts are the best way to do more showing and less telling, which will paint vivid pictures for your reader.
On Word, there is an option after going through the spelling and grammar check to see the ease of the read, the grade level, and the number of passive sentences. I love this tool. While it's important to have a mix of passive and active sentences, I will try to get the passive sentences as low as possible. This helped me, and soon it became automatic to write active lines.

I know this is a long comment, but I see so much potential in this story. I think you did a great job, and with practice and tweaking, you'll quickly move from great to outstanding.

I like the way you tackled the topic in a fresh way. While there are many stories about resolving to be faithful, this is different and stands out. I'll remember this story in a good way. Keep writing, reading, and leaving comments on other challenges. I have a feeling you are blossoming into an outstanding author, and I've no doubt God has great plans for your stories!
01/21/16
Congratulations on your 1st place win in the Advanced Category, Pat.

I love reading your writing and enjoy your encouragement and comments.
Pat, this was such a powerful piece based on a true story. Congratulations on your first place in the advanced category.
Congratulations on your first place. It was a powerful story.
Congratulations on ranking 1st in your level and 24 overall! Happy Dance!
Congratulations on ranking 1st in your level and 14 overall! Happy Dance! (sorry I hit the 2, not the 1. You did come in 14th overall!)
01/22/16
Congrats on your first place ranking for this gripping story! I love that hymn and delighted in the way you brought their story alive. In our African villages, the opponents of the Gospel just poison the believers so such a scene isn't possible. I applaud your courage in sharing this story. Sometimes writers are hesitant to share such important truth.
03/28/16
Congratulations on being a Quarterly Challenge winner!
03/28/16
I'm blown away by this. Thanks to all.
Pat, I was so exited for you. Being chosen for the quarterly writing challenge is quite an accomplishment. I have always appreciated your comments on my pieces.

This was so moving and thought provoking. I really enjoyed it and congratulations on your well deserved 1st place win!
04/14/16
Congratulations. An inspiring reminder of conversions from Hinduism and the background of a favourite hymn.Thank you.