The Official Writing Challenge
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Wow, very emotional.
A very powerful story. Well-written, too. With the deep south dialect (great job, very realistic sense of the language, Mark Twain-ish) and the series of events, it is a clear reference to New Orleans and the effects of Katrina, but it could have been in almost any era. Thank you for the reminder that they are still struggling with "starting" over.

Sorry, but I got lost in trying to understand how Opal was going under the water and then was talking to the rescuers. I think the POV shifted mid paragraph. When using same gender pronouns it is easy to lose the reader. Perhaps using the name again, or making the other character male would have kept the moment's momentum in tact. Just a thought. A very good story, none the less.
Gripping. Didn't expect the self-sacfificial end. Dialect clear and believable. Yeggy
Very suspenseful. This would be even more readable if each person's dialog were in a separate paragraph. Thanks for this timely story.
Wow, what a great piece of writing. Was this based on an actual experience? Either way, you've painted a vivid picture and I found I was eager to read
all the way through.