Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Year 1, Week 39: Results!

I regret nothing.
Mars apologizes for her tardiness in beginning to write the reviews (working two jobs seems to suck the time out of everything (and she's gonna move from her parent's house to her aunt's house (which is really only about 15 minutes away, but packing is still a thing))). 

She thanks you all for participating last Saturday (and putting up with varying schedules)! (As to any questions as to why there's only one judge this week: Rin might not be joining us as a judge again, so Si and Mars will alternate weeks).

And, without further ado, here are your results for Y1W39! 

Honorable Mention

Sara Codair's Deceit in the Dark

The rivalry here between pixies and vampires intrigues me and raises a number of questions: Why does the rivalry exist? Are they all out to murder one another? Are vampires or pixies evil in this story? It's a nice little hook (and the eyebrow raise amuses me). The use of the prompt in this piece fell a little flat for me; I keep re-reading the story and not understanding how the first few lines fit into the story; I feel like it begins as Victoria hisses. I do like the character emotions here, however (the pixie being all elfin and fantastical and Victoria just being shocked at being murdered and falling to pieces (can you imagine that? Terrifying)). Good job!

First Runner Up

Daisy Warwick's Needs Must

I've been there. Those days where I forgot to eat breakfast and forgot to pack a lunch. Soon enough, the only thing I can think about is food (and the rumbling stomach doesn't help), and it's impossible to not fixate on the thought or mention of food. I can sympathize with the vampire in this piece (though I probably would give a second thought about nomming a human . . . ), and I was amused by the main character's nonchalant demeanor. I wondered why s/he couldn't find a graveyard shift job, since it seems like that would be perfect kind of job for a vampire (work during the night, sleep during the day?) and hardly anyone wants to work that shift. I like the image I get of Edward Banks; I'm actually a little sad he got nommed because he seemed like an okay guy. Nice work.


Timothy Davis

with The Orchard

So, usually when I read the pieces, the title is the last thing I look at (if I do look at them, oops). I was pleasantly surprised to find that the title of this piece is "The Orchard", since my favorite line of the piece seems to be exactly what the title was referencing: "The bottles were beginning to form a row like an orchard of brown glass." The imagery here is very sharp and I get a feeling of dusty light filtering into this crapsack of a room and over this depressed man, hitting the glass and throwing pale brown, glass shadows everywhere. It's a very sentimental line for a very sentimental piece. 

I, too, wonder where Sally is, and what happened to make them divorce. The bittersweet reflection on the past tugs at the heartstrings, but also instills a deep curiosity for what occurred in between then and now to have brought Jared to this low point in his life. From the last uttered line, "What have I done?" the reader might infer that it was Jared's fault (he said or did something to Sally that caused her to leave), and the guilt that seeps into the darkness is poignant. The skull is another curiosity (it reminds me of Wilson from Castaway, and turns this piece into a psychological puzzle for me), and everything about this piece is such stark emotion and imagery (I can envision Jared sitting on his couch and despondently staring down at this skull, as if he wants it to explain why life is so crappy, but that answer won't ever come, because it's just a skull). (I didn't realize how much I like this piece until just now, by the way, as I write this review. Well done, Sir, well done.)
The Orchard

“But the nights belong to me,” he whispered to the skull on the center of Sally’s, his ex-wife, coffee table. They had picked it out together before they were married, before they were dating, and in that innocent-just-friends-awkward stage of development where holding hands seemed better than sex. It was one of those stories they told their friends, whom they had over for wine or dinner; a joke, really, because the salesperson thought they were a couple, which was always the punchline: "We were destined to be together," and then the room would erupt with laughter.

Now Jared was watching The Fifth Element on TBS and conversing with a novelty skull he had acquired via an online auction. He wondered where she was, took a swig of beer, and washed the thought away. He watched Bruce Willis over the round hilltop of his belly and sat the empty bottle next to the skull. The bottles were beginning to form a row like an orchard of brown glass. Jared pushed himself up from the cushions and brushed off his shirt. Sally would be more than livid if she saw the house like this. He leaned back, turned off the TV, and let the darkness sink on him. He could hear the neighborhood as if it were a singular organism, each kid’s squeal or dog’s bark or car’s horn a breath that seemed to have more gravity than the darkness of his living room. Even the chitter of katydids made him feel less alive, as though Sally were an essential part of his existence. 
“What have I done?” Jared asked the darkness, but there was nothing to reply.

Congratulations, all! 
See you this Saturday :)

1 comment:

  1. If you want another judge, I'd be interested in judging once or twice a month over the summer (which for me starts when I turn in grades next week), though I can't make any promises after September as I usually work 60+ hours a week in the fall semester.