Peer Review by ALangford (United Kingdom)

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Gasping for Breath

By: CCReed


PROMPT: Why I Write

The reason I write is simple-

I write so that I can breathe.

People think the act of breathing is just filling up your lungs with air just to let it all out again. No, breathing is sucking in words, the words that surround me everywhere- I hear them, I see them, I feel them. They crowd into my mind and suffocate me. My eyes see something and automatically, it's naming them, describing them to me, so fast that they're just a blur across my mind. My ears- they hear voices, people talking, so many words, the sound of footsteps, words to describe the rhythm of those footsteps. I touch something, and my mind automatically thinks "soft", "rough", "delicate"- whatever my fingers brush against, my mind describes the feeling. I always have words in my mind, whether it's a song stuck in my head or I'm wondering how someone else feels. If I don't write for too long, I get claustrophobic; I start to choke on the words. I've breathed them in, and I need to breathe them out again and rearrange them to make something beautiful.

I write because I need the words like I need air, because I don't want to feel like I'm gasping for breath.


Peer Review

"I've breathed them in, and I need to breathe them out again and rearrange them to make something beautiful."
I'm especially keen on the use of the word 'need' here - it is a sort of yearning.


I think the frenetic nature of my thoughts and how they sort of spill out onto a page when I sit down to write and how much it calms me down, even if I'm writing about something unrelated to me. I think everyone gets this, but it was really well described in your use of the phrase 'so fast that they're just a blur across my mind' - you're acutely aware of their intricacies etc but at the same time there's so much to explore in them yet they just seem to blur past.


Reviewer Comments

I love the use of structure, with your introductory lines and last line being short and simple but split by this long, somewhat frenzied paragraph in the middle - it really effectively shows the intensity of your feeling.
However, you may want to change the word 'suffocate' given that the rest of the piece contradicts this.
Overall, this is a lovely piece - well done!