Writing Forums

Writing Forums is a privately-owned, community managed writing environment. We provide an unlimited opportunity for writers and poets of all abilities, to share their work and communicate with other writers and creative artists. We offer an experience that is safe, welcoming and friendly, regardless of your level of participation, knowledge or skill. There are several opportunities for writers to exchange tips, engage in discussions about techniques, and grow in your craft. You can also participate in forum competitions that are exciting and helpful in building your skill level. There's so much more for you to explore!

10/30/07 | Advice Column Scores (1 Viewer)

valeca

Patron
A thank you to smilinghelps for the theme of this round of LM, and to speakerphone2 for providing the letter!

And, as always, don't forget to tip your judges.

smilinghelps
Pete_C
Hawke


Please check my math. I've been known to screw it up.

Here we go:

Pete_C's Scores

I think because the original letter was slightly off the wall, it makes it quite difficult to see a common theme in the replies. Some have paddled around the edges of the murky pool of nonsensicality, others have waded straight in, and a few have gone gung-ho off the top board. I tried to keep that in mind when scoring them, but my over-riding concern was whether I liked the responses or not.

I also awarded everyone who entered 10 out of 20, and then for everything I didn’t like I subtracted, and for everything I did like I added. The result is that you all scored 10/20. No, not really. Some did worse!

Wheelz1138 – 10/20

Wheelz stuck to the script like, well, something that sticks to something very closely. It reminded of one of those nature programmes when they take a wild beast into it’s natural habitat and open the cage door. A few hours later, the animal is still in the cage, eating something or sleeping. I think given the potential to be silly, it was just too sensible.

Alanmt – 13/20

Alanmt was the first letter to make me laugh. Okay, it was only the second one I read, but that matters not. He took the time to bother picking the negatives out of the letter to turn the situation around (1 point), made the obvious Atlanta joke (1 point), and pointed out that when the unemployed take month long trips, you shouldn’t be concerned for their wealth (1 point).

Silverwriter – 11/20

Okay, a point for trying to tie the problems to something else, and you damn well nearly lost that point back, plus a few more, for making it Sudoku. I don’t get that game; it’s attraction is surely limited by the fact that answers are all inevitably the same. I ended up disliking the man, and I don’t think that was the point.

StephenP2003 – 10/20

Tea? Chinese Tea? Fia Jong? This mentions sources but doesn’t quote them, and could benefit from a bit of an edit too. I don’t know, but I can’t help think that young Stephen has been a tad too serious about this challenge, and serious doesn’t earn you points. Well, not in my point tally it doesn’t.

Vangoghsear - 16/20

A good start that raised a chortle, and a nice belligerent stance that gets to the root of the problem immediately. Those grinning dickless bears mocking her pretend boyfriend. No girl – even one who is an obvious mentalist – is going to stand for that. A higher score for a higher quality response.

Mermaid on the breakwater – 13/20

Dear Twat. Did you think that was funny? Do you think it’s big using words like that? Is that what you call comedy? Well, sunshine, it made me laugh (1 point). Then you started talking about a rage virus or something, and then just as you were headed for the abyss you introduced a friend from the banking world, the inanity of which earned you another point, and then just before you were penalised for telling her to secure all teddy bears, a blow to the temple saved your hide.

Fictionfreak – 10/20

You earned a point for bringing God into the occasion, and then lost a point for not doing anything funny with him. It’s not like you didn’t have time; you tale was very brief, like this comment.

Jiieden – 8/20

Oh Jiieden, Jiieden, Jiieden; what did you do? Minus 1 point for not mentioning anything in the letter, minus another for posting a list of clichés that weren’t the funniest of typical clichés, and minus am point for having a name that’s hard to pronounce. Okay, I’ll give you the point back for the last one, but really, try and pay more attention in class.

Matthatter – 12/20

One point for a plausible explanation of the behaviour, and another point for the line: ‘He wants to burry you in the dirt of his life.’ I might have given you two points had you spelled bury correctly. You would have received a veritable hatful of points if you had stuck to the dog theme. There are so many puns you could have used (feeling ruff, barking mad, being hounded).

Futhark – 14/20

Futhark, you nearly hit the bullseye with the comment about both cycles falling together: ‘You can point and he can smash. It saves you the hassle!’ I gave you an earth-shattering 5 points for that. You didn’t earn any for the Atlanta Braves comment, because I am from Hingerland, and we don’t understand football played in helmets and padding (if indeed the Braves are such an operation). I’m guessing that folks in the US might have chuckled. Then you signed off your letter as Dewey Cheetum & Howe. That cost you a point. Venture down the well-trod path of old jokes at your peril.

Apple – 15/20

That’s right. It’s all about sex. It is always about sex. When my newspaper doesn’t arrive, the newsagent says it was a different paperboy, but I know it’s all about sex. The milk goes sour. It’s all about sex. Raining? Sex. Too fat? Sex. Stupid? Sex. I also like the whole suicide/sex thing. Most men would rather have sex; I know, I asked one. In fact, if I was suicidal, I wouldn’t say no to a blow job before I leaped from the bridge. Somehow, being a girl, Apple spotted that. Five points!

Winterstorm – 10/20

Now Winterstorm, when I read your work I could hear the voice giving the advice. It sounded just like Barry White. Then I noticed that you are a female. I hate to say this love, but you are going to struggle to get a husband with a voice like that. I also didn’t buy the whole dead mother story. How many old ladies are called China? That’s a new fangled name like Brittany or Brooklyn. It’s part of the new world where fuel has no lead, people take their telephones to the supermarket, and women sound like Barry White.

Virtugirl333 – 10/20

A cock infection? Beat him over the head? Not a suitable treatment for those who are pregnant? Let me tell you something; if her boyfriend was acting badly, had knob rot and was pregnant, then that girl would be in all manners of shit. Now, wash out your mouth with soap and water; girls shouldn’t talk of such dirty things.

Hakeem – 11/20

I gave you additional point, only because I believe that had she dressed in a bear costume and kept a cleaver near by, you might well solve the problem when he cuts her into millions of pieces. Mind you, expect a letter from him when his arse is like a blood orange after picking up the soap in the showers in Cell Block A, where he shares with Mr Big. Mind you, you can’t make an omelette, eh Hakeem?

Loulou – 16/20

I read the opening line: ‘I once dated a horse called Stan.’ Then I got up from my computer and went and sat down in a darkened room. I imagined the courtship, the engagement, the wedding and the reception, the wedding night. I thought about it all in great detail, and only stopped after 14 hours when the neighbours started banging on the windows, calling out: ’Please Mister, don’t think no more!’ The first paragraph earned five points, and the PS earned another.

Doctor Snuff – 11/20

A mixture of nearly sensible advice and the random killing of a bear. I also like how he specified an outdoors camping trip. It is surprising how many people take indoors camping trips and end up finding it something of a disappointment. My favourite camping takes place in hotel rooms … without a tent, but with a litre of vodka and a girl who can called anything you want, but that’s another story.

Murdershewrote2005 – 11/20

I read your letter and still aren’t quite sure what you’re saying. Are you a bit, well, mad? Mind you, I did give a point for insinuating that he was shagging the teddy bears via their necks (I hope that was what you meant).

Lost in Some Story – 13/20

A no-nonsense approach with just enough stupidity to make it work. Why do women have stuffed toys anyway? I always thought they wanted cars, houses, boats and gold. If I gave my missus a teddy, she’d give me one hell of a kung fu kick to the testicular region, and say: ‘Where’s the speedboat?’

Eggo - 16/20

A great way to finish. Okay, I know the advice was supposed to be bad, but at least one person flouted convention and told it like it really is. Now, some people won’t like how I’ve marked this, so I shall respond using a line From Eggo.

‘Your problem is you let the monkey saddle the horse and now you don’t like how it’s tied.’
 

valeca

Patron
Hawke’s Scores - Advice Column

A big thank you to valeca for running this show, to smilinghelps for the prompt, to speakerphone2 for the letter, and to everyone who entered. Twenty entries! That’s mighty impressive. And mighty impressive, hilarious works as well. Way to go, everyone!


wheelz1138 - Dear "Concerned" Girlfriend - 16
Nits: a world-wide = worldwide; after the U.S. Is (is) gone
Pretty funny and imaginative stuff, this. Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
alanmt - Dear Miss Trustful - 17
I thought you were supposed to give the wrong advice? Kidding. But I can see someone actually giving this advice… and getting sued to boot. Super turnabout. “…learn how to spell Atlanta!”--Excellent! Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
silverwriter - Dear Teddy Bear Enthusiast - 18
Kittens and rabbits? Funny you should mention that. I had this dream once, where… Oops, my bad. Humorous stuff here, lady. Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
StephenP2003 - A Victim of the Epidemic - 17
Nits: you’ll have step up (have to step up)
A brain-targeting virus in tealeaves. Could happen. Stick with him while he’s making his way up to serial killer? Not a chance. (lol) Good stuff, Stephen. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
vangoghsear - Sex Starved Headless Teddy Burner - 20
You killed this, dude. Excellent. The score says it.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Mermaid on the breakwater - Dear Twat - 17

Imaginative work here. I’ve seen those movies. No sense panicking everyone, like the radio broadcast “War of the Worlds.” :wink: Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fictionfreak - Girlfriend of the Boyfriend - 15
Engaged to God? That’s quite a leap. (lol) Good work here. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jiieden - Dear Poor Little Thing - 16
Nit: seperate = separate
Nice avoidance of the topic altogether to give the gal the sense that what her boyfriend is doing is nothing to be concerned about. Neat. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Matthatter - Dear Miss Mistaken - 18
“He wants to burry you in the dirt of his life.” That cracked me up. Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pete C - Hello my friend - Judge - N/A
HAHA! I get those every once in a while. Still waiting on the checks, too. My bank account number is… Mmm, maybe I’d better PM you that info. One can’t be too careful, you know. Thank you!
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Futhark - Dear Soul mate - 18
Men have special times of the month? I learn something new every day. *grin* Loved the Braves and the turnabout to Bob Cox. So I’m thinking men’s “time of the month” coincide with sports stats. God (or Bob), that makes sense! lol Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

apple - Dear Deer in the Headlights - 17
Weirdly enough, I can see this advice being given by a first year psych student looking far too deeply into things… which makes it funny and dangerous at the same time. (Yes, I was grinning while typing that.) From teddy bears to suicide. Good turnabout. Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Winterstorm - Dear Someone Clearly in need of help - 16
Nits: Altantis = Atlantis
China was his mother? HAHA! Quite imaginative to make the advice person seem to glance over the original letter and get some of it wrong (boyfriend/husband, month/Friday). I’ve seen that happen. Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
virtugirl333 - Dear tedi111 - 14
If he wasn’t crazy before, he’d definitely be crazy after. (lol) Good stuff. Would have liked to have seen more done with the leftover word count is all. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hakeem - Dear Abbey - 18
“… purchase a teddy bear costume and wear it around him more often in the night, especially on the last three days. Having a cleaver nearby may diminish his insecurity and make him more comfortable around you.” Killer lines, and in more ways than one. Hilarious, those. Good work. Thank you.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Loulou - Dear Anally Retentive - 19
HAHA! I have no idea what you’re saying. (Kidding.) Hilarious horse story. Makes me wonder about you… I mean, the advice columnist. “PS. If he’s shit in bed forget everything I said.” Killer, Loulou. Now about that blow-up horse design… I’ll PM you my address. Good work. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Doctor Snuff - Dear Fish-food - 16
Oh yeah (lol), send them out to the woods! Good heavens. Funny stuff (except the bear-killing part). Good job. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
murdershewrote2005 - Dear Trippin’ in Paradise - 17
I’m sensing some personal issues and a tiny bit of hostility here, am I right? (Kidding!) Funny stuff, lady. “How else would he pay for your little teddy bear fantasies? “ Killer line, that. Good job. Thank you.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lost in Some Story - Dear Self-Absorbed - 17
Nice turnabout here. “Perhaps get him a visor from Atlantis or buy him a ticket to see the sights and visit God. Become involved.” That cracked my up. Good work here. Thank you.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
eggo - Dear Logistics - 19
Are these gems from personal experience? (HAHA!) But really, I knew eggo was only a pseudonym, and that you were Dr. Phil all along. Expect members to flood your PM box. Good work here. Thank you.
 

valeca

Patron
smilinghelps' Scores


I spent a lot of time reading through all of the entries and the original premise of the challenge. The key to being fully successful at this particular challenge was in giving the most obscure, nonsensical advice. There are a few who definitely rose to the occasion. I found this challenge difficult to judge because most of the entries were very short and some gave similar advice. I tried to comment on what stood out from each entry the most.


Dear Concerned Girlfriend—14--Wheelz1138
The idea that Europe would survive the resurfacing of Atlantis makes me want to move! Those poor burning Teddy Bears, who knew they needed to be destroyed? Doesn’t God love us even though we have them?

Dear Miss Trustful—15--alanmt
Turning the tables on the victim, I like it. Watch your quotes; you may have wanted to italicize your quotes from the original letter. A rich guy to go take her to China wouldn’t be a bad thing.

Dear Teddy Bear Enthusiast—17--silverwriter
Answering as if God? Rich. I love the Sudoku Warrior rituals and the suggestions for offerings. Very interesting.

Dearest Stranger—14—StephenP2003
Bizarre behavior is the result of contaminated tea, original—I like it. I love the “tough love” comment and video on You Tube

Dear Sex Starved Headless Teddy Burner—17--vangoghsear
Making the writer thinking she’s crazy—great. The language was a bit heavy but I love the sign off—Sick of the Whiners! Classic!

Dear Twat—16—Mermaid on the Breakwater
ATAU, the Active Twat Assuance Unit is great. Creative with the Sci-Fi references but could use a little more craziness.

Dear Girlfriend of the Boyfriend—13--Fictionfreak
God’s followers need to sacrifice teddy bears? The man loves her but is engaged to God, I had a difficult time following this one.

Dear Poor Little Thing—19--Jiieden
True zaniness! I was waiting for an entry like this. The Best things in life are free, so you should carry cash at all times! Good stuff! Love the signature line too, this one made my sides hurt.

Dear Miss Mistaken—16--Matthatter
Marking his territory and bury (one R) you in the dirt of his life? Rich, good stuff.

Hello my friend—18—Pete C
Turning the advice into a solicitation scam, a very nice twist. The “thumb-screws for torturing blind children” was another nice touch. Very creative.

Dear Soulmate—15--Futhark
God is Bob Cox—I should have known! Whenever anyone says, “In all honesty”, you know they’re lying. Cute piece.

Dear Deer in the Headlights—18--apple
A very angry approach—I like it. Suicide…bad, Hot sex…good. If everyone lived their life like this, think how nice the world would be.

Dear Someone Clearly in need of help—15--Winterstorm
The boyfriend’s mother is “China”, that was a new take. Interesting. I like the table-turning in this one too. Tough love all the way. Watch your used of ‘you’re , your’.

Dear tedi111—15—virtugirl333
This was a bit short, and similar to the other ‘virus’ theory. Watch your compound words “boyfriend”, “however”, they are one word, not two.

Dear Abbey—17--Hakeem
The bear costume made me a bit nervous—maybe Abbey will be beheaded! Nice use of language and definitely ridiculous!

Dear Anally Retentive—19--Loulou
I judged all the entries anonymously and I couldn’t wait to find out who wrote this! You had me at horse! The post script should be universal, to say the least. Loved it.

Dear Fish-Food—17—DoctorSnuff
The camping trip sounds dangerous, what a great idea. Bait and switch—terrible advice. Good job.

Dear Trippin’ in Paradise—16—murdershewrote2005
He’s a man-whore, of course! A lot of strong language here too, but I can handle it. Watch your paragraphs and separate when necessary. I never noticed the penis-shaped castle in The Little Mermaid, I should look closer.

Dear Self-Absorbed—18—Lost In Some Story
Be supportive and buy him a ticket to see God. If only it were that easy. This is definitely bad advice—which is the whole idea. Favorite line “Quit putting landmines in your own path.”

Dear Logistics—18--eggo
Second time I’ve heard about horses and saddles, which is interesting. All of the suggestions were crazy and ridiculous! I love it. Words to live by: “Drug dependency can be a very ugly thing. Unless, he’s dependant on drugs you supply, it’s a win-win relationship”.
 

valeca

Patron
In Third Place:

Apple






In Second Place:
A Tie!

eggo and vangoghsear






And in First Place:

(Drum roll, please)
...


...


...


...

Loulou!



Congratulations to everyone for participating and making this round of LM a successful one! See you next time.
 

Fictionfreak

Senior Member
Thanks Judges: Smiling Helps, Hawk, and Valeca, for all the hard work... I'm not that good with humor in writing so I could have expected my scoring. And congradulations Apple, Eggo, Vangoghsear, Loulou!!
 

vangoghsear

WF Veteran
WF Veterans
Oh my gosh! I tied for second in this great group of entries!

Congratulations Loulou! Loved your PS.

Way to go Eggo, loved your monkey line and several of the other homilies.

Cool twist there Apple.

Thanks judges for all your work and thanks Valeca for officiating and administering!
 

StephenP2003

Senior Member
Damn, I mis-interpreted the directions. I thought we had to be convincing, but not funny. I get paid to do advice columns, and I'm just burnt-out. Next time, I can do funny :)
 
Last edited:

Loulou

WF Veterans
Wow, I won, I'm so damned excited, the only thing I ever won before was a Duran Duran T-shirt in 1983! Thanks to the excellent judges, Hawke, Smiling and Pete, you're all darlings! Congrats to all other winners! I beat Eggo and vangophsear and a whole host of other talents! Couldn't have done it with all the other great entries pushing me to try harder! And thanks to Stan the horse, my inspiration! And now the police are here to arrest me for my exclaimation mark abuse.....
 

Lost in Some Story

Senior Member
These were a lot of fun. I see a future in bad advice columns in your future Loulou.

Thanks to all the judges for their hard work. 19 entries! Thanks.
 

eggo

Patron
Just back in town...

Congrats Lou Lou ..Great piece... and all the other winners as well as though of you that participated.

Thanks Judges for taking the time to sort through all this. A fine job by all of you.
 

Futhark

Senior Member
Good work, Loulou! And thanks to the judges. I think this competition just proved to me that I should steer clear of humor ;)
 

apple

WF Veterans
Congrats, Loulou. Your piece was great, I laughed out loud. Thank you judges, your crits were very entertaining and fun, too.
 
Top