The Official Writing Challenge
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Member Comments
Well done on the dialogue and the description.

The sentence about the kids older brother seems a little awkward: like it needs a comma or the word "and" or to be rearranged to "so he can afford an apartment to move out.."

I especially like the ending where the MC tells his dog that prayer is their way of changing the world. Great entry.

This was a creative approach to describing this generations problems. I suggest loosening up the grammar of the dialogue. People don't speak in complete sentences -- especially teens. Contractions and some interrupting would sound more realistic. Have fun experimenting with loosening up the dialogue. This piece is worth refining.
I really liked how you tackled this topic. I enjoyed the old man watching the youth speculate on world events. A few minor thoughts: Your opening sentence made me grin a bit because it almost seemed like the old man was wet with morning dew. You could tighten up some of those sentences making it clearer too. For example: After his early morning walk, Bill eased his body onto a damp park bench. Inhaling, he smelled the dank earth and cocked his head to hear the raucous birds'calls.
Another thing you might want to consider is the dialog. Teens are intelligent today, but still have a language of their own. Listen to kids talking and mimic them. Also, it felt like there were twenty kids there. Instead maybe limit it to the skinny girl, the tall guy who talks while waving his hands about, and another girl with a baseball cap or the boy in khakis. Maybe have Bill give them nicknames (Skinny, Khaki Boy) and interject in between their conversations. For example: "Fido, boy, have young-uns changed." He fidgeted on the bench to better hear the conversation. "Ya hear that? Climate change! Me and my pals jabbered about TV shows or rock concerts."
Make his dialog distinct to him, likewise, have each one of the kids have a unique voice too. Another thing you want to avoid is fancy dialog taglines. Keep to she said or he asked and stay away from quipped or lamented. Instead show those things in body language. Have the boys give a playful shove or the girl's voice go up an octave or her face turn red as she talks faster. Overall, though, I think you've an outstanding idea. I really liked that you showed concerned kids not typical trouble-makers that many might describe. This says a lot about the characters. In the end, you have Bill finish crying, but when did he start? By adding little asides with the dog, you could show his eyes tearing up or maybe have him reach for a hankerchief. I know I've given a lot of feedback, but that's because I see so much potential in this piece. It would be great for a magazine article or even a Sunday school take-home sheet. I really enjoyed your characters and am excited to read more of your work.
I enjoyed your piece very much.
Thank you.
It was fun and sad to overhear the kids' conversation- good job and on topic.