The Official Writing Challenge
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07/16/09
Perfect title, phenomenal voice, and superb characterization. Just the right amount of dialect added to this piece and its beautiful, simple message...loved it.
07/17/09
You created excellent, realistic characters in this piece. Good work.
07/18/09
Excellent dialect that so effectively added to this story.

Well done.
07/20/09
I love how you incorporated light and the season into this piece. Your voice is superb!Wonderful!
07/20/09
This is a sweet and lovely story, with such a realistic narrator's voice. Beautiful message, too. It's amazing how God finds us unexpectedly when we're not looking for Him...
07/20/09
Superb! You caught my imagination with the first sentence and held it to the last!
07/20/09
Wonderful story! You've done a superb job! The title fits the content. In the fifth paragraph when you speak of his "schooling," I'm wondering if you wouldn't want to change that to "schoolin'" since that is how the narrator is speaking.
Very nicely done!
07/20/09
Incredible, Jan. I am in awe of this piece. Priceless!
I love your charactarizion of these folks. I could see little MJ reaching for that sunbeam and the bee. A wonderful story from beginning to end!
07/20/09
I agree with all the glowing comments. I only hit two small passages where I paused over a rough phrasing or with a question. It was amazing that one moment it seemed as if there would be no way you could wrap this story up in a satisfying way--it seemed as if too much still needed tying up--and the next moment you had done it! It was like watching a magician's trick that you just can't figure out.
Ooo, you did such a good job of setting the characters, time, and location without really explicitly saying any of it. I loved the "told God I didn't believe in Him" line, since it's such an oxymoron.
07/21/09
A delicious bittersweet romance. I particularly liked the child's inventive name.
It wasn't until I was almost done reading this that I realized the topic was summer, not Twilight years (I didn't read any last week, so got off kilter)! I was wondering how in the world you were going to get that in there... lol All that to say, I loved this! The voice was perfect and I could really 'feel' the era it is set in.
A bittersweet tale.
07/22/09
Jan, this is so lovely. It reminded me of myself when my hubby passed away and my son and I were left...so many feelings of happy and sad mixed together, it was, indeed, a bittersweet time. I really like the title, too.
Perfect voice. perfect plot. perfect ending. perfect writing. Just perfectly wonderful!
07/22/09
I loved these 3 characters. You made them all come to life. Excellent job.
07/22/09
I enjoyed this story from beginning to end. Wonderful writing, touching story.
07/22/09
Loved the voice and the character here. Just lovely!
What a great voice! And what a great entry! Big time kudos!
07/22/09
Fantastic writing. I loved the innocence of the young love, the pain of loss, the hope reborn. Fantastic choice of names. If someone lined up 'pearl', 'jasper' and 'malachite' and asked me what they had in common I don't think I'd say 'They all appear in the Bible'! But they do! Great job, as usual.
Part of not being able to read entries until late, is that most of what you could say has already been said, so I will only add that it was a pleasure to read this; and I can't think of a higher compliment.
Wow...while I hope to advance out of the "intermediate" level some day, I'm scared to compete with fantastic submsissions like this! Story telling at its best...
07/22/09
The dialect and voice are perfect; the ending left me with an mmmmmmmmm in my throat. I am in awe of your talent.
I fell in love with Jasper, too, as well as with your story--just delightful.
07/23/09
I really liked this. Some excellent lines, especially about the icey (sp?:) creek and her frozen spirit. You should teach this stuff:)
God bless.
07/29/09
What a darling story...And I love the way you told it, just like it should be told, with the feelings of a teenager maturing, but remembering her fist love...What more can I say? This story is filled with intrigue--and sometimes doubt as to where it was taking the reader--and surprise at how it led into romance and a family. Almost a tragic ending, but light thrown into it just in time, before the climax...Perfect!...Helen