Peer Review by lina13 (Australia)

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Catnap

By: Madison Kristine


FREE WRITING

Prrr, I opened my eyes to a strange cat laying next to me. Then I noticed the room. I looked up shocked. “Where am I?” I puzzledly thought. The walls were baby blue, gold accents were placed about the room. I pushed the cotton covers back, and disoriented I sat on the edge of the wooden bed frame. The door handle clicked, I shot up nervously awaiting what was behind the door. As I stood up I noticed a difference in sight, I could see higher. I was higher, I grew; and so did my hair down to my knees.
    A woman came through the door she had an average sized frame, dark brown hair with wisps of grey and a gentle smile. She had a book in her hands. Bang! The book fell to the floor. The woman stood there in astonishment. She began to cry then came over and hugged me tightly. “I love you” she snuffled through the tears. I didn’t know what to say or do. I stood there hugging the person who so desperately wanted to hug me.
    She let me go “Do you know who I am? Do you remember?” I looked at her searching my mind. There was so much to take in “Where was I, who is this, why have I changed?” Then I froze, “Mom?” Then I began to cry. “What happened?” I asked still processing everything. We then spent the afternoon explaining I took a catnap 20 years ago; and had never woken up. The only rational thing experts could say was that I fell into an unexplained coma.
    My Mom was busy calling relatives and telling them the news. Along with the doctor who had checked on me ever so many months. I walked around the house learning the new technology. I mourned the loss of my cats and dog that I so dearly loved; and the relatives I knew and loved. The year was now 2038, and the world had changed.
    The government had endured many reforms and changes, the president was now a minority of two. A man and women who worked side by side.  It was the apogee in technology. The earth’s air, land, and sea quality reached a horrendous status five years back. The governments of the world had come together and are now working on reversing what they can.
    Later that day I cut my hair and got ready for supper. I re-met friends and family I once knew and ones that I didn’t know I had. We had my favorite meal and reminisced about what had happened for all those years. When evening came I was ironically tired even though I slept for 20 years. I prayed to God, hugged my Mom and hesitantly fell asleep.


Message to Readers

"Catnap" is a short story I needed to write for my English class. I'm not really sure how I feel about it, but thought I would share!


Peer Review

I really liked the concept of your story - the plot twist was unique and interesting, and I didn't see it coming at the beginning!


To make this story even better, I think you could have added some more details throughout the piece, rather than squishing them all at the end. Maybe you could explore the main persona's characterisation a little more - some sort of a backstory, or past experiences would help. As a reader, I'm keen to know more about what actually happened 20 years ago - how did the persona feel when she fell asleep? How old is she now? How does she feel, knowing that she has missed two decades of her life?


Reviewer Comments

Really well done tackling a very unique story idea! Firstly, I'd just like to say that you, as the reader, have full creative control over this piece - my suggestions are simply my personal opinion, and it's up to you to what extent you incorporate my feedback. Secondly, I've noticed a couple of grammatical errors throughout and I've left little suggestions on how to fix those, so please don't be overwhelmed by how much of the text is highlighted! Although grammar doesn't make or break a story, it plays a big role in the clarity of your writing.

In terms of additional comments, I would suggest expanding this story into a slightly longer piece - it's such a complicated idea that it seems almost impossible to fit it into this short length. The end of your writing has more "tell", than "show" - the statements like "the government had endured many reforms and changes" don't really add much to the story and are simple facts being told, rather than an element of the story being described. With a little bit of expansion at the end of the story, focusing in on the persona's emotions after having woken up rather than concentrating on describing the new world of 2038, your story will be an even more enjoyable read! Keep going and well done!