I'm the author of TALKIN' HEADS #30.
I almost never put my own stuff in the crits here, and I didn't intend to do it this time. But the numbering system is a little off on my end of the bot--it thinks it has more entries than it really does, so I have to do a little math and add extra slots so that, when I say there are 30 slots, there really ARE 30.
So I did the math and added the extra slots. And forgot to bear in mind that I had manually rejected one of the entries because it was a duplicate. (People, please don't enter the same thing from two separate email accounts. All you're doing is stealing a spot from someone else.)
Needless to say, I ended up with 29 entries queued to post yesterday, and I was all, POOP. Because when you promise 30 slots and submissions close, and then you post 29...well, it doesn't look good.
So I scrambled to find an excerpt of my own work to fill the empty slot. I chose a scene from a draft that hasn't yet seen its first revision, so it was pretty risky to throw it out there. I felt like it was at least clean enough for some public critique, though, and I am very appreciative of the feedback I've received.
And because I love you, I'm going to call you out by name. :)
THANK YOU Rachel Menard, mad-hat-ink, Jen Schafer, ikmar, and H.R. Sinclair, Southpaw. Your comments are so helpful. (Pointing out small things like removing extraneous prepositional phrases is always helpful as we dig into revisions, yes? Like your suggestion, mad-hat, to change "What if I refuse to write?" to "What if I refuse?" And, Jen, your suggestion to change "You're not going to hurt me" to "You won't hurt me" is equally spot-on.)
And, mad-hat-ink? I feel like you really "get" my writing. And we all know how good that feels. The lines you quoted are actually characteristic of my writing style, and I used them to convey exactly what you got from them. That was a lovely moment for me.
You were divided over the food-chewing, which amused me. I'll have to see what I can do there to make sure it's not a hiccup.
Anyway, thank you all. Truly. This particular draft is a hot mess, and when I finally dig in, I'm going to need lots of chocolate. Thank you all for offering such helpful feedback, and for helping me to see that, even in the midst of a mess, there's always some good.
Whew! My conscience is now clean. But I'm also grateful for having had the opportunity to call out some of you who have been faithful to critique not only during this particular round, but in many rounds. I always see a pattern of familiar screen names in my inbox, to the point where I feel like I'm walking into a coffee shop and seeing the faces of friends. YOUR TIME AND EFFORT ARE SO VERY APPRECIATED.
And now I'm off to have a low-key, get-some-rest-and-some-writing done sort of day. It's a performance weekend for the symphony chorus I'm a part of, so I've given myself permission to live like an artiste for a couple of days. Heh!
May your own weekends be joyful as well.