The Official Writing Challenge
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Wow this is an intense story. You did a fantastic job of building the characters and fitting so much story into such limited word space.

As fantastic as it is, there are a few little things you could do to make it outstanding. Writers struggle with show vs tell quite often. Instead of using taglines like he said, you can use that spot to show the reader the character's emotions. For example: As her heart thudded in her chest, she swallowed several times before gazing into his eyes.“Alex, do you think there is a God?”
Hopefully that would not only show the reader who is speaking, but also that she is a bit nervous, even though she loves and trusts him, she is afraid to ask him her question.

I think you have a natural knack for storytelling, and while you need to tweak some punctuation, it doesn't distract from the suspense that you build. I could definitely see this as a longer story or even a novel. You have great characters, and a wonderful way of weaving an intense story. I enjoy open-ended endings because it allows the reader to fill in the blanks the way she needs them to be done.

If you're interested in more feedback, check out the brick throwing thread on the message boards : http://www.faithwriters.com/Boards/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=56&t=36947&sid=9bf86fd740f6a3f9ea7b0dc030505a40
04/29/13
About everything has been said above. Writing dialog is a special talent, you will soon learn it. You have good flow to your story and theme is credible. Keep working, am looking forward to reading more of your work.
04/29/13
Loved the story. You definitely have a knack for great story telling, and a gift for sharing your wonderful writing. Don't worry, you will learn the puncts. I did, and I started out the same way you have, only it took me ages before I could write a story like this one! Looking forward to your future writes!

Blessings, Lynn
04/29/13
You've painted a very interesting scene. My inquisitive nature wanted to know why the Bible had been banned. I agree with the other comments, but many of those issues can be overcome with practice. There are a few specific things I could point out. Send me a message if you're interested in a more detailed critic. I did enjoy your piece. Thank you for sharing with us!
I can but echo the previous sentiments. This is gripping, stirring - words fail me. Love it!
The only thing I could think of as the setting for this story was the tribulation period after the rapture, particularly after the Anti Christ breaks his treaty with Israel at the 3 and 1/2 mark when his true colors will be shown. Bibles, or any true worshipping of the One true God will be expressly be forbidden. Scripture also warns in Matthew 24 that family members will turn on each other. Maybe you had something else in mind when you wrote this like a communist country, but what I shared is where my mind went to immediately. This was very well written. There were a few minor punctuation issues, but a challenge buddy group, googling different puncs on the internet, reading Jan's grammar on forums along with a good grammar book can help you there easily. This story was very suspenseful and drew me in right away. I think you have a real knack for writing fiction. Well done. Blessings.
05/01/13
Your story drew me in. At first I thought it would be a children's story (a secret room, fun...) but then it took a serious turn and became a gripping tale. While fiction this could be a true story for some parts of the world, sadly. You've done a great job. My only suggestion would be to take a redundant word out of the last sentence: 'Her life was now irrevocably changed forever.' You don't need both 'irrevocably' and 'forever'. Keep writing!
My goodness this is riveting and you've done a good job telling a futuristic horrific story. I so liked the ending as well and could lead on to another "adventure" to develop your story and Karen's characters even more. Great job.
05/02/13
Your story seemed realistic and was intense at the same time. I am impressed with your storytelling. I believe God has blessed you with a gift of writing and sharing a message at the same time. Well done!!
Congratulations on placing 6th in your level and 36 overall! (The highest rankings can be found on the message boards at http://www.faithwriters.com/Boards/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=55&t=36971&sid=fc51905b09e1c3a6153917b33a0614a4 )
05/03/13
Congratulations on placing sixth in your level. Great job!