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ophelialit74 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 1:43pm
Hi all, 

Since the feedback from the judges has started rolling in, I thought I'd start a thread to discuss. 

I came in 2nd in my heat (shockingly), and they had generally very nice things to say...the only criticism they offered, however, was that I could have used "more background details." Disapprove

Ha! Yes. I agree. However, I only had 100 words. 100 words! Sort of made me laugh....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rthomas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 2:53pm

Edited to follow the advice that story shouldn’t be posted here!



Edited by rthomas - 26 Jul 2020 at 10:04am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ScottieNoir Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 3:01pm



Edited by ScottieNoir - 23 Jul 2020 at 3:02pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ScottieNoir Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 3:03pm
Originally posted by rthomas rthomas wrote:

Gutted I didn't make the next round, but here's my story and feedback. 

'Pot and Kettle'' by Rishma Thomas -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1589}  Nice dialogue. Love the line, "'Pot or kettle, Alexandra?'"

Cute ending.  {1689}  I love that Aliya's blind date turns out to be her one night stand. Great moment when Aliya hisses at Khalil, "You said you’re Miguel, from Mexico.”  {1611}  This is excellent. You were able to convey so much, especially through the dialogue.  WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1589}  Give us more of a set up. Where are we? Who else is there? Aren't her parents there to meet his parents? Tell us Khalil's name up front (her blind date, Khalil, and his family.) I wasn't sure that the person who stepped forward was her blind date, at first.

What does "misunderstanding Alliya's surprise" mean? What do the parents think of her reaction?

Where do the parents go? Are they to be left waiting on the lawn while these two get coffee?

What is Alliya's final thought on this matchmaking endeavor?  {1689}  You have given them a great problem: now enjoy it even more. Not the secret of it, but what it means for the two of them. It was a one-night stand. Maybe that's all they wanted and this is awkward. Maybe now in the light of day inside their real selves they aren't attracted. Let that be a HUGE problem that they must work to solve. Having them still have the hots for each other and sneaking off for another hook up is funny and very believable--but it doesn't force your characters into uncomfortable places that change them.  {1611}  I had no complaints.


That was a great story! And to hear back from one of the judges “I had no complaints”!? How does a judge have nothing to say, but not move on? I’m sorry!

I had one mention the tense I used in the sentence, and (like usual) the other two wanted to know more, see thoughts from other characters, understand the fallout and explore the ending more... all within the 100 words 🤔

I think if they want to to see different aspects, they should give their opinion as to which items they would sacrifice to make room for it - odd to get penalized if they’d keep it all as is, but just want to keep reading more of the story (which is really the mark of something good).

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote north_north_west Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 3:35pm
Ophelia, congrats to you!  

I'll jump in.  

Here is my story, and feedback:



  WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1611}  Lovely story with a wonderful hook at the beginning.  {1589}  The ending snuck up on me. Well told.  {1883}  What a cheeky story! I really enjoyed this.

Quite the unexpected twist...

Great play with words on "the season had passed"

and "final, perfect lemon" nice reflection and then foreshadowing to Mrs. Scharf's surprise...moving into a "new season." BRILLIANT!

I REALLY like the title...but wonder if it gives away the twist? Hmmmm.  WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1611}  This is a strong, well-paced story. No complaints.  {1589}  Let us know where we are. Give placement. Where does Andy find a perfect lemon? Is it in her packed belongings? On a tree outside her window? Where does he return from?  {1883}  Consider, perhaps rearranging to give the reader the twist at the very last possible moment:

"That's Mr. Kelin." She blushed, then demurely sipped her lemonade. "He's coming over later."

(Just a thought.)


Honestly, no real complaints (though of course I wish I'd moved on).    Valid suggestions, both things that came up in the forum as well.




Edited by north_north_west - 24 Jul 2020 at 2:50pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ophelialit74 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 3:40pm
Originally posted by north_north_west north_north_west wrote:

Ophelia, congrats to you!  

I'll jump in.  

Here is my story, and feedback:

Second Spring for Mrs. Scharf

After the flowers from her husband’s funeral had wilted, Mrs. Scharf agreed to be moved to a single room.  Andy, the aide, unpacked for her but she waved him away when he started to hang her wedding pictures.

“Is there fresh lemonade?” Mrs. Scharf asked.

Andy didn’t think so—the season had passed.  But looking anyway, he found a final, perfect lemon.

When he returned, frail Mrs. Scharf had hung a picture. It was her and her prom date, hand in hand, sixty years earlier.

 “That’s Mr. Klein,” Mrs. Scharf said, blushing. “He’s coming over, later.”   She sipped lemonade demurely.
=================================================================



  WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1611}  Lovely story with a wonderful hook at the beginning.  {1589}  The ending snuck up on me. Well told.  {1883}  What a cheeky story! I really enjoyed this.

Quite the unexpected twist...

Great play with words on "the season had passed"

and "final, perfect lemon" nice reflection and then foreshadowing to Mrs. Scharf's surprise...moving into a "new season." BRILLIANT!

I REALLY like the title...but wonder if it gives away the twist? Hmmmm.  WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1611}  This is a strong, well-paced story. No complaints.  {1589}  Let us know where we are. Give placement. Where does Andy find a perfect lemon? Is it in her packed belongings? On a tree outside her window? Where does he return from?  {1883}  Consider, perhaps rearranging to give the reader the twist at the very last possible moment:

"That's Mr. Kelin." She blushed, then demurely sipped her lemonade. "He's coming over later."

(Just a thought.)


Honestly, no real complaints (though of course I wish I'd moved on).    Valid suggestions, both things that came up in the forum as well.



What I'm noticing is that Judge 1611 is remarkable unhelpful when it comes to providing constructive feedback--or any feedback, really. Yours is the second story I've seen in which he/she simply said, "No complaints" in the "Needs Work" section....not professional, and not helpful. Nobody is asking for complaints, but some thoughtful observations and/or suggestions would be nice. Sheesh. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote just_a_pause Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 4:10pm
I had one judge make a typo, another contradict themselves by saying something was great in the what was good but then should be scrapped in the what needs work, and one judge who criticised me for not having used italics... Well if it wasn't a plain text submission I would have used italics!! To say I'm a little disenchanted with their feedback is an understatement :p
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dark&StormyNight Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 4:47pm
WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1689}  I love that Bergman knows how to help Liam reel in the Redhead. Wonderful moment when Bergman's ploy works and she comes screeching to a halt and offers to help. Wonderful use of the ten speed and other clues to suggest Liam's and the Redhead's age.  {1589}  Liam has a strong voice, and I enjoyed listening to him grumble. I like the last line. Gave me a chuckle.  {1611}  This was a cute and engaging story with a strong arc.  WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1689}  Tighten the opening, strengthen Bergman's ploy, and resist with all your might the rake smacking ploy. You don't need it. Instead, give the Redhead a name and just as much life as Liam. Show us how this working together gives them the chance to open their hearts to each other.  {1589}  Give me a better set-up. Where are we? Who else is there? Why is Liam raking Old Man Bergman's yard? And why can't he use a leaf blower?
Be sure to tag your dialogue so I know who is speaking.
I'm not clear on why Bergman yells, "'BLESS YA, BOY, YER A LIFESAVER!"
Who says, "Hi, Liam, need some help?"  {1611}  This sentence felt awkwardly phrased: "Liam yelped as the rake he stepped on smacked into his face."

1589 really doesn’t get the 100-word concept do they?  Also just didn’t seem to get a few rather obvious (I thought) points.  I’ll say 1689 was somewhat helpful.


Edited by Dark&StormyNight - 24 Jul 2020 at 6:52pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ramblejamble Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 5:22pm




Edited by ramblejamble - 25 Jul 2020 at 7:22am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dark&StormyNight Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Jul 2020 at 5:42pm
Originally posted by ramblejamble ramblejamble wrote:

{1598}  Would it be possible to add something subtle to the description of the father hugging the mother that would enhance their ghost-like qualities? This might draw the reader even more into the scene and increase its impact. 


I thought it was perfectly clear who the single ghost was.  It seems some of these judges can’t be bothered to read 100 words a couple times through or need every last thing spelled out for them.
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