The Official Writing Challenge
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You have completely captured the seemingly external, forced nature of OCD. This was marvelously out of the box. My heart broke for the MC, and rejoiced in her small triumph at the end. Loved it...
This is one of those pieces I will remember long after reading it. Great work.
This is an astounding entry!
I do think the last paragraph weakened it.
I would have preferred an author's note saying something about Obsessive Compulsive Disorder instead.
This is so powerfully written. I felt like I was sitting on Melissa's shoulder, walking through every agonizing step of her wretched routine. The insight into this illness and how you have conveyed it is brilliant.
It's amazing how you captured the essence of the MC's pain. I too loved the ending- made me cheer for her!
Your creative take on the topic is quite riveting. Incredibly done!
I could see your poor MC going through her tedious routine. This is *very* creative and I enjoyed reading it.
I don't think I can add to what's already been said. This really put me inside your MC's head, I was sure i could feel the pull of the stings. I'm so glad there was a spark of rebellion at the end.
Oh, I could just feel her frustration and her mingled longing/inability to escape from her compulsions. As others have mentioned, I was so glad to find a bit of hope at the end. Absolutely superb writing!
Incredible entry! It doesn't surprize me that this is your writing, Jan. You have a way of making me feel exactly what the MC is feeling. I even felt the extreme satisfaction of victory in the last paragraph. If this isn't high on the judges' list this week I will be amazed.
When you get to the end of a story, and you have to stop and just think about what you've read, you know the writer has achieved excellence. This reader did.
WOW! This is so well-done!! You very clearly portrayed the struggle those with this disability face each day. It gave me a better understanding of their pain. Thank you!
I take so little time to read all the entries. it would have been my loss had I missed this one. Unlike another post, I found the last paragraph the most powerful.
Awesome. No textbook, lecture or even interview with a sufferer of OCD has given me as vivid and memorable an insight into the condition as this story has. Wow!
Spot on--all the way from beginning to end. It lacks nothing!
I'm not familiar with this condtion, but the descriptions were so vivid, I felt the mc's agony.
Wow, this was good. I like the way in which you presented the MC's struggle.
What a description...what a story...what a way to get in to the head of someone who suffers from a terrible condition. Extremely well-written!
You said in one of your previous entries that you were struggling to find the right title for some of your work. This one is beyond right, it is both perfect and profound. This kind of title prepares the reader for all the nuances of the piece to follow - allowing them to explore all the depths the author intended. Beautiful!
The prison of OCD, oy. You painted the picture well.
Right away I could tell this was a story about OCD, though that made it far from predictable.

Having suffered with a mild form of this myself and knowing others with far worse cases of it, I could totally relate to your story. I think your comparison of the disorder to that of a marionette in a puppet show is a great way of explaining the problem to readers or anyone who doesn't understand it.

This is smart and educational reading.
Ok, wow. I will NEVER forget this story. Perfect.
I just Knew this was yours before I even looked at the brick thing. Powerful, extraordinary, exactly on OC target!
God has indeed given you one huge measure of talent.
I think I liked the last paragraph best - her rebellion against the puppeteer's strings. Thanks for a gently humorous dance with your MC through a difficult and painful malady. What God given talent you have!
I loved it and thought it a very literary piece. Definitely captures the inner turmoil of those who suffer from OCD.

I don't think the first and last paragraphs are necessary - they work, but the piece does stand alone without them. I would rather see her pause in her thoughts, and then make the decision in "real time" through her inner dialogue.

Nicely done! You are so creative!