The Official Writing Challenge
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Wow. This is a magnificent story of unconditional love. Your opening and closing paragraphs are wonderful at tying the story together.
This is GOOD! It really gives the message of God, in one Word, one package.

What a wonderful gift, a matchbox containing the entire gospel in one word. Hope. Well done.
This is so sad and hopeful at the same time. It does make me wonder now about the many homeless people we see and hear about. Very good writing.
Absolutely vivid writing - this is haunting and moving and wonderfully told. Just excellent.
What they said. Beautiful!
Wow. I don't know what else to say. Amazing writing.
Excellent I particularly liked the short, snappy paragraphs, reminiscent of the flashes that you used so powerfully in your opening paragraph to set the mood.
Watch the process and processed close together in your second paragraph.
You have nailed the despair of those who cannot allow themselves love or forgiveness. What grace we know from our Lord!
Wonderful story. You tied it up so neatly and left us with just enough hope for a new beginning for us to be satisfied at the end.
This piece broke my heart for te MC. You captured me from the title to last sentence. I love the "hope" you left us with in the ending. Great writing my friend.
Masterful wordsmanship, as always! You really got inside this poor man's spirit. Wonderful!
Excellent story. What I like about the style of this is how you varied the length of the sentences to give it a flow and then a punch. Longish descriptions about Rocky and Jack, then boom, one word "hope". Gave the story a real impact.
A great effort. I know with the word count limit, the temptation to wrap things up nicely at the end is strong. If I were advising you on this piece, it would be to rework the ending a tad to leave it a bit more open and not take such a huge step toward resolution in such a short space. That would keep it more of a thought-provoking snap-shot (like it is up to the end) and feel less forced at the end. Also, at the end, I found the word-for-word repeating of the sentence from the opening paragraph about the puddles and neon lights to be distracting. It might have read better more as a off-reference rather than a rote repetition. But don't get me wrong, overall the piece is well written, and solid as it stands. I just think it could have been taken up a notch or two, and it would have been a lock for serious contention this week (it might still be, who knows? One man's "close" is another man's "perfect"!)
These words give no doubt to your position in Masters. Especailly these- "It was a slow process of petrifaction as I processed the loss."

I would like to read the whole story some day!!
Beautiful story! Your message comes through loud and clear, but it is delivered tenderly.
Being a beginner myself, I was impressed from beginning to end and certainly see the reason why you are a Master and I am a beginner. Great job!
What a very heart-wrenching story. I have known a couple of people like this one depicted in this story. How sad to be lonely, hurting, shut away voluntarily from society. I have know hurt, and loss, but never to this extent....How very well you have told this sad story. HOPE I have too, for this poor lonely man. I think - I know - Jack will be waiting for him and he will gently lead this man back into society and acceptance of himself....Very well told, leaving the conclusion up to our imagination...We all need HOPE....Helen
What a great example of the love of Christ being shown by Jack. My heart really went out to Rocky.

It makes me wonder how many homeless people in our society aren't drug addicts or alcoholics. Maybe some of them have experienced far worse pain than that, and that is why they are in the situation that they are in. We need to reach out to these people just as this story teaches.
Congratulations on your EC. This is very powerful, and written so well. Excellent job with the topic.