The Official Writing Challenge
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I couldn't figure out why the MC's dying wish would be to get to the bookstore. You fooled me completely. Good job and great message.
Personally, I felt I understood the MC's motives for getting to the bookstore. The opening caught me off guard--but not in a bad way. It just wasnt what I had expected. I do, however, enjoy stories like this one because I tend to create mine that way: tragedies bringing about a disguised blessing. True they are bittersweet blessings, but they are blessings still.

A unique take on the topic, so good job with that! The story, I thought, was very good--and really well written. The descriptions were masterful, and the memories helped me connect with the MC.

The only thing I was left wondering was why the MC was shot. Its not necessarily an important detail, but the whole time I was reading I was searching for the answer and so was a little distracted from the story.

So vivid! I felt myself holding my breath and tightening my stomach muscles in sympathy for the MC. Well written!
Debbie: I could feel the young man's angst as he longed to reach the comfort of the bookstore. Superb twist at the end...I could see him enter into that heavenly kingdom, forgiven and free.
I'm so moved I'm having trouble expressing how good this is. My eyes are watering with mixed emotions over this piece. There's pain; over the loss of the MC, but also joy; for the triumph of entering the Kingdom.
An emotional, gripping story. I was also wondering why it was so important to get to the bookstore, and then I understood. Very well done. Thank you.
Debbie, I'm in awe of the power of this piece! Sooo splendid in every way. So deserving of a win! Dynamic and engaging with a real believable climax. What a great writer you are.

Absolutely rich with emotion. Fabulous, and believable, story. Well Done and Contrats!
Very vivid writing... I felt that I was right there with this young man, experiencing his last agonizing moments. I'm glad he found his way back to the cross at the end. Intense and moving--Congratulations!