Word Hole #2

Word Hole 3

Writing Workshop Critiques of The Old Testament
by Michelle Hogmire

“You know what would really help all those chapters about laws? Show don’t tell.”


“None of these characters truly change by the end. Unless you consider getting slaughtered in a senseless battle change.”


“Do we really need the genealogy of every single character? More importantly, do we need it twice?”


“A talking snake is a bit too on the nose for a phallic symbol.”


“Good fiction never tries to teach a moral lesson.”


“Is the reader supposed to know what ‘Selah’ means?”


“Oh great, another story where everything is a woman’s fault. If I wanted that, I’d read James Salter.”


“Never thought I’d say this, but maybe more suicide would help?”


“It was interesting when the narrative became songs. Then again, I lost the sense of the characters as ’embodied beings in space.'”


“Floods, fire, rape, slavery, incest—you should enter this in the Faux Faulkner Contest.”


“Wait, so God doesn’t care if David murders a guy and bangs his wife, because David’s ‘special,’ but God gets pissed when people eat fruit? I don’t get it.”


“Now, I’m no expert (I only took one required science class in undergrad), but I’m pretty sure a person can’t literally turn into a pillar of salt.”


“If the characters are going to ‘forget’ about God and start worshipping idols every other page, why not describe ONE instance in a scene and summarize the rest in a single paragraph?”


“Stopped reading after I saw the phrase ‘In the beginning’ in the first sentence.”

Michelle Hogmire is a literary agent assistant at Barbara Braun Associates and the Business Manager for Columbia: A Journal of Literature and Art. She grew up in West Virginia and has a BA in Creative Writing from Marshall University. She currently attends the MFA program at Columbia University and lives in New York City.

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