The Official Writing Challenge
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This is an intense story and one important for adults and teens alike. I laughed at the bracelet being caught in the mixer. It was a delightful picture.

You touched on the MC seeing a friend and realizing that she was homeless. I'd loved to hear more about that.I know the word count limited you but this feels like such an important part. Perhaps if you had cut some of the details about Mom being so organized you would have been able to do more with this conflict.

I think you did a spectacular job of having several different messages without coming of as preachy. That's a sign of natural ability. Those scattered moments with a teen can build the bond between parent and child. Another great message is it's important to show by example. Lastly the but for the grace of God, go I is one of my favorite messages in this story. Good job.
Wonderful account of love and meaning throughout this whole piece. It held moments of levity, just enought not to detract from the powerful message it elicited. Great job. Thank you.

God bless~
This story was very well received by this reader. I could picture my granddaughter in the role as Ashley, although she is coming around. You have many messages in this well-written story which you could elaborate on if you wanted to continue this story. A different and what I would call out-of-the-box while still "in the kitchen." Nicely done!
I think you show a natural knack for story telling. Your writing is very engaging and I enjoyed it all the way to the end; and the message was a good one as well.
Good story.

Let me share a secret with you. You can see what your story will look like in the preview box. In order to not hit publish on accident, I don't put the title or the level in until I'm completely ready to enter it. This way, you can make sure all your codes worked and if they didn't, you can go back and fix them. That little trick has helped me tons. So frustrating when I would hit publish on accident instead of preview! Now if I do that, it won't publish because I don't have the needed information! :)
I think you have teenagers. You know them inside and out. :) I enjoyed the surprise you left for the reader when her friend "Tracy" showed up for the meal. I loved the unexpectedness of that. Your title made me smile, it fits your story perfectly.
This is a lovely take on the topic of "In the Kitchen." I especially like that Ashley's prayer 'resembled a confession' - many times have I done much the same. Volunteering for the needy is a rewarding and humbling experience, which your MC certainly began to realise.

I, too, would like to have read a little less detail and a little more of the deeper themes, especially her friend Tracy. This friendship could have been developed into the main storyline; how they knew one another, what was Tracy like at school - obnoxious or arrogant, or really shy and withdrawn? How did Ashley's kitchen experience change her opinion of Tracy; and Tracy's opinion of Ashley?

You certainly touched on a wonderful story with this, well done.
A very good story about something very close to my heart...anyone can become homeless for any reason...and seeing her friend there brought the reality to are a good story teller....thank you