Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Year 2, Week 32: Results!

Thanks for playing! The writing teacher in me would like to pet everyone who entered, so I thought I'd mention what I liked about the entries, because, really-- something wonderful DID stand out to me about each one! As a fellow writer, I covet praise in great quantities... applying the golden rule here... :)

Mary Quite Contrary stopped me short on the exquisite line about the shadows growing "shy" as the light gained strength. Don't Try This at Home's ending was marvellously subtle. Travelling Through Time made me sad and yearning for more. The Letter moved well and had ample tension.

First Runner Up

Marj Crockett's You've Got Mail

What stood out to me about this story was the twist, the revelation that the victims were not victims at all. I also appreciated the depth of character: Sean hiding the letter from Alice to protect her. I inferred he's been taking them out all along... I wondered at the fact that the letters came only to him at first and only later added Alice's name. Why that was, wasn't clear, but the strength of the story outweighed that for me. Read your dialogue out loud for places contractions would be appropriate. 

Y2W32 Winner

L. M. Leffew

with Letters

This story won the moment I smelled the " tang of meat searing." Bam! I enjoyed becoming horrified/electrified right along with your narrator in that moment. The contrast between being "safe" inside her apartment, only to be faced with her stalker. And he made... dinner? He "dangles" a wine glass from his fingers? (sounds like an elegant man) Nicely done. The image of the stalker is foreboding, yet he's relaxed. That's a creepy-sensual contrast and rather refreshing. I would have liked to see more in terms of the previous letters' contents, since you had words with which to play. I would like him filled out more, this interesting stalker chef. 


There it was again: another letter, sitting pale and innocuous in her mail box. Marie doesn't open this one. They've all been the same, full of flattery and obsession. She starts to tear it to pieces over the trashcan some fastidious neighbor has placed near the mailbox enclave but pauses just as the envelope gives, slips it into her purse instead. 

She'll try the police again tomorrow. They kept the last three letters. Somewhere, in a file with her restraining order, she thinks, tucked away on a dark dusty shelf for all the good it's done her. But, surely, letters four through six will mean they can do something else, something more. 

Plan in mind, she straightens her spine, retrieves the rest of her mail and takes the three flights of stairs to her apartment. She locks the deadbolt and chain behind her, lays her forehead against the door and breathes in the cool scent of home, the sweet warmth of vanilla candles—did she leave one burning?— the sharp tang of meat searing— 

She jerks upright, fights the sudden animal-reflex to freeze, and turns just as a figure steps into her kitchen doorway. Tall and broad and seeming to block all the afternoon sunlight, he leans against the frame, one of her wine glasses dangling from his fingers, and says, "Good evening, Marie. Did you get my letters?"

1 comment:

  1. Thank you! :) I admit, I started, last minute, with a completely different piece that wasn't working, so stalker-chef was a Johnny-come-lately who didn't introduce himself.

    I'm glad you enjoyed.