REVIEW BY GINNY SWART
This story is beautifully constructed and shows a firm assured hand at the writing tiller. The plot was simple but very effective, a great premise which could so easily happen. The academic background was well drawn ( obviously you know the ins and outs of university politics!) The grammar, spelling and punctuation was faultless.( Not something I can often say)
You got the reader onto Amy’s side immediately by describing her background of struggling to make it up the academic ladder and I liked the way she came across as slightly cynical and very human, the way she had a moral battle with this knowledge she was suddenly given. And giving out little hints as to her appearance ( crisply ironed shirt, short reddish brown hair etc) built up the physical picture.
The first and last line tied up the story very neatly. The whole story was an extremely satisfying read, and those little images and observations along the way made it sparkle.
I don’t usually do it this way but I’ve gone through your ms with a fine toothcomb and made a few comments along the way, which I hope will be helpful.
I see you were shortlisted in the 2008 competition too. Your story must have come pretty close this year so let’s hope third time lucky in 2010 – if there is any justice in this world! Keep writing, and keep a look out for calls for anthologies from South African publishers or competition announcements.
Actaully, I wonder if you could submit this to You magazine? They are the only SA mag that uses regular fiction and the editor likes local stories and she particularly likes revenge themes! . 2000 is the word count they want too. The academic background might be slightly highbrow for them but why not give it a go?
Send it as an attachment to email@example.com The editor’s name is Cecilia. Don’t be upset if you hear nothing for months, she hardly ever acknowledges receipt of a story and then sometimes you get an acceptance 6 months later.