Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Wednesday Wrap Up Post and other news and announcements...

Thank you everyone for your great takes on this prompt. Every story was unique and we met all sorts of friends, and experienced every emotion from hate to love. This week we welcome new followers - Encourage One Another and Paul Smith. Tinu and Crystal are our latest members. Crystal thought she had signed up, so check your member status before our Halloween challenge as you must be a member to be eligible for Featured Writer or any other accolade.

So, without further ado, here are the mini critiques on each entry, prepared by both of your hosts and in no particular order:

Yolanda - The hateful beautiful friend with the hair, the body - oh, the green-eyed monster! Isn't it all just one big happy family as the BF gets the ex and the children? Grr. Great use of theme.
Charmaine - continued with her Rosie story. What a dame! A real hoot as we see Rosie dealing with the weight she's piled on in the last years, no longer attractive to the garbage man - and downright repulsive to the friend down the road. I don't think Rosie and Debbie were ever meant to be friends! 
Donna - Here we have a spell-binding take on the theme with chubby, jealous Lacy casting a spell for her gorgeous, yet needy friend Crystal. Some interesting concepts such as binge eating. As Lacy twists the opal around her neck, we're left asking what is the price she's placed on her spellmaking? When will Crystal find out?
Candilynn - Yearning - a great poem by Candilynn who usually enters prose. The bitterness was palpable. Here we have the emotions - envy, hungering, craving, wanting what she doesn't have anymore, but once had. Will she or won't she win him back from 'her'?
Nancy - I love it when Nancy takes us into her fantastical world of faery. I think we all fell in love with these little characters in the fae community. Who knew such naughtiness existed there? What does Lilac have in mind for her erstwhile friend Rosebud?
Sally - My Friend. A beautiful, emotional tribute to a rare and precious friend. Was there a dry eye? My eyes teared up as I felt what was coming. A lovely life cut short by a drunk driver. So moving. I hope it helped to share with us, Sally.
Linda - took us to Efra, Northern Ghana, for a tale of two friends. Her beautiful, clever, dearest friend destroyed by other's greed. How some can turn good into evil and a cautionary tale into how at times global charities cause harm when they mean good. A peek into cultural traditions. I'm glad Linda's mc continued her friendship with her aunt.
Roland - Haunted by Whispers - we have Maxine, the 'goblin princess', a self-confessed 'freak', at this time not the friend of Becca, whose POV we had. I was pleased to see an explanation by Roland in the comments that these two, after their initial antagonism, would form an alliance.
Ghazala - presented us with a quirky story of the reunion of two best friend from school days, 20 years ago. It was hugely funny how the husband of the mc was digging a hole for himself with his comments about the hot new neighbour. It was touching how the two friends reunited, despite the rumours going around the building. She could easily have hated her friend.
Crystal -   A disturbing story with no answer. What did Phoebe's friend Katy do to come between Phoebe and her love, Daniel? We aren't sure whether the secretive Katy is having an affair with her best friend's boyfriend. True hate for a beautiful friend, whatever she's done.
Anna: has quite a mystery going with her love triangle; Charlottes zany, uncaring friend
Ramona has stolen many things from Charlotte, including boyfriend Emil.  Now Ramona is missing, and no love lost from Charlotte; except that leaves another mystery about the fate of Emil also.
Raelene: shows the bruised consequences of pettiness, the self destructive nature of a jealous heart.  Sometimes, all that is needed to pull out of the depths of despair is to look around at what you have, and be comforted.
Denise:  added another layer to her Sally and Inya story in the form of a best friend from New York, Aggie; dead set on interfering with the island romance that has turned the corporate beauty’s sensibilities.
Francine: posted a snippet from her upcoming Regency romance novel that involves two lovely ladies in a flirtatious battle of wills over the handsome, injured lord.  What better place for the jealousy monster to appear than the bedroom of a naked man.
Adura: added to an ongoing saga of Michael and Sadi, and introduced a new character - Michael’s best friend Femi.  This male perspective was fresh and original, a different take on the envy theme as the tables seem to be turn, and Michael is not the rebellious one.
Michael: offered a unique take on the theme with two opposing, yet equally beautiful elements of nature as they shine their glories for all the world to admire.  Cryptic, lyrical, a mystery to resolve, beautifully penned.
Nilanjana: This story was a completely heartbreaking in its simplicity; a friendship comfortably nurtured, the introduction of a new person, and the angst of watching the man you want fall helplessly love with the innate charms of your best friend.
Clare: put fresh faces on the childhood story of best friends on separate maturity tracks, drawn together by routine, as one falls in the shadows...until someone special notices the shadow, and draws her into the light. Welcome Clare!
Heather: propelled her shadow character into the arms of the best friend’s intended conquest; stealing the limelight in quiet conversation, a couple drinks, and a moment alone in the crowd.

Now more announcements...


Your hosts can no longer take the pressure of choosing between such great writing each FW challenge, so we've asked a couple of wonderful bloggers to help out as guest judges - Ann Best and Nas Dean. We'll give you more on their role later, but suffice to say Ann is a member of RFW, a qualified editor, published author and poet. Nas is a long-time follower of RFW, a reader for Entangled Publishing, so is especially qualified to see a winning story.   So whenever we have a FW prompt, your entries will be judged by more impartial judges. The Halloween House of Horrors entries will be the first to be judged by our pros.


More and more people are reading blog entries on their mobile/cell phones, so here are some points to keep in mind when posting:
  • Only the Post column is visible - not the sidebars. If you're using a Stretch template, not all of your post will be visible and readers will tire of navigating from side to side.
  • If you use Word Verification, forget it. Those evil Captcha codes are hardly visible on a large monitor, let alone a tiny mobile phone. And just try filling them on on a mobile. Impossible. Google added them with the new interface and apparently they keep reappearing, so check your comments occasionally.
  • If you use Google + there are more steps added to the reading/commenting processes. At times when I come across a Google + link all I get is an ad for a Google + app ad. If you've got a blog, I suggest you use your blog as your link. Just saying...
  • Depending on the mobile phone, a youtube clip may be inaccessible.
That's just some things I've come across as I use my mobile a lot to check blogs when I'm out and about. Do you have anything to share that would be helpful?


Please return on Monday, October 1st, for a guest post by fellow RFW member, Linda Katmarian who is working through the process of self publishing. She will be sharing the important points she's learned so far. We've learned a lot reading through it.

See you then!


  1. Great stories, and I'll agree with you about that horrible captcha or word verification program, it's very unwelcoming. You can turn word verification off in your settings menu.

    Lots of fun this week!

  2. Wonderful piece each one, enjoyed reading them all and the great wrap up. Thank you for the heads up re mobile friendliness and comment settings.
    Have a great week/weekend.

  3. Hi all
    Great wrap up. Boy, I so agree it would be hard to choose a winner. So a welcome to Ann and Nas, your job is going to be a challenge.

    No idea if my blog is visible. I am not the computer wizard. He's on vacation to parts unknown.

    Do tell Denise and Donna, what day does your shared Birthday land one?

    Now really ladies, your prompts are giving me so many story ideas I'm getting up in the middle of the night to write them down.

  4. I'm just glad to see this finally posted. Was preschuduled much earlier. I have been in the air again, this time to north Queensland, sharing birthday celebs with my daughter who also shares my birthday.
    Now Donna's is 12 Oct and Denise is 9 Oct. Who else shares an Oct birthday? I see Sally just had hers!
    Glad you're loving the prompts Nancy!
    Happy writing for Birthday Madness one and all!

    1. I agree with Denise; I'm glad we're affecting you, lol.

      Erm; mine's the 11th actually, but since I'm taking the whole week off work, I guess its everyday :)


    2. Sorry hon, why did I remember it as 12th? I'd given you and EXTRA day of youth before your little milestone.:-)

  5. Great wrap-up! This prompt was a lot of fun. Thank you to everyone who offered so many helpful tips.

  6. It was a blast! Thanks for giving us such a great prompt. I can't wait for the Halloween prompt. :))
    Welcome to the new members!

  7. Thank you for this wrap up..! You do such wonders with your critique. We all feel perked up :)

    The mobile tip was very useful~

  8. My daughter's Birthday is the 18th of Oct. We don't share the month but we were both born on the 18th.

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  10. Thanks Nancy for the warm welcome! It's certainly going to be a challenge judging such a talented group of writers. I hope my proof-reading job with Entangled Publishing comes in handy!


    (forgot to sign the above comment!)

    1. I'm sure your skills are exactly what we all need Nas. Thank you.


  11. HI, Denise and Donna,

    Great wrap up....

    What a terrific surprise that Nas and Ann are joining in as judges. They are both SO well respected and sweet! I will look forward to see what they have to comment on in all of our writing.

    I must say, so far, joining the RFW has been an amazing writing experience and challenge. You girls are really PUSHING me to my writing limits. As you both know I am not a "romantic" writer per say, but I have enjoyed experimenting with different writing styles to meet each challenge.

    The next prompt should be quite fun to write and read. I am so longing forward to it.

    1. Good! I'm glad you're stretching your writing and enjoying it. Feels as good as a power walk, right :)


    2. Actually Donna, it does! Exercising the mind is just as important as the body ... they do work hand-in-hand ... most of the time! LOL. As we all know the body takes over when it digs its heals in and says "NO MORE!"

    3. I'm a great believer in exercising both the body and mind. Getting all that blood pumping does great things for the brain and our creativity. Been reading posts from a new meme, Healthy Writers, who're all about getting out there and working the bod on a regular basis.
      And Michael, we're so pleased to have you at RFW. Your stories have been well-thought-out and delicious to read. Thank you.

    4. Thanks Denise,

      I am so pleased that you are enjoying them.

      Were you aware I started a health and fitness post bi-monthly? Every other Monday. I also feature guest bloggers, so if you'd like to jump in one month and be featured with your routine, I'd love it!

      L. Diane Wolfe is scheduled for this Monday, Oct. !st. And I have Alex Cavanaugh scheduled for November. Can you believe it! So many cool bloggers who want to help keep us ALL healthy.

      I have a slot for January open or February. Whichever works best for you if you are interested. Let me know....

  12. Hello Everyone! Good to see you all back; and I am excited for the next prompt. Can't wait to see all the birthday parties going on.

    Fabulous, fabulous!!

    And thank you Nas and Anne for helping us out. Very much appreciated.


  13. I share an October birthday, the 24th! My son's birthday is on October 15. He came close to being born on my late sister's birthday which is the 17th. I also have a friend who's birthday is the 2nd!! Lots of October birthdays in my family as well as March birthdays too!! Not only that, but after my son turns 5 in October, my wee little hobbit will be turning 2 in November, and then there's CHRISTMAS! For some reason, I got dooped! LOL! Just kidding! But they certainly break me towards the end of the year! :) But that's what it's all about! Just to see them smile!

    Congratulations and welcome to the new judges! I can't wait!!! As for all the posts this previous challenge, they were all really great! As always! And I hope to see everyone soon with the next challenge!!! Hopefully I can continue with this last story/challenge for the birthday theme as well as the halloween spooktacular!! LOL! Have a great weekend everyone! Do get outside to enjoy the nice fall weather!!

    1. Wow, Crystal, it's October madness in your family! Plenty of fuel for a story for the next prompt here! All my family's birthdays are from October, all through Christmas, so it's one busy time of year!

    2. And I always have to comment about differences in seasons - in the Southern Hemisphere, we're getting out and enjoying the nice Spring weather. We're very global here. I'm sure our Spring would be much the same as your Fall (Autumn).

  14. Wonderful posts all round... And welcome Anne & Nas... Your work lies ahead, and good luck! It was the part I hated most about co-hosting RFW. ;)


    1. Yes Francine, I wonder why we didn't think of this? Maybe over time it just gets too hard! It should be easier for Ann and Nas to make judgements as they're not so involved as we are. I just sat down after Donna and I had nervous breakdowns over the previous prompt judging and thought, well, why not ask some qualified bloggers we know...

  15. Thank you everyone for your warm welcome to our new judges, Ann and Nas! They're going to be awesome!


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