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Margaret Alice writing contest
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Margaret Alice

My great aunt, Margaret Alice, inspired my mother to read everyday. Following in the footsteps of her aunt, my mother has instilled within me the same love of reading and writing Margaret Alice gave her. I am writing under the pseudonym, Margaret Alice, hoping I can continue the line of book lovers!

Story: The Fate Continuum


Each week authors will be given a new question to answer which will lend additional insight into their story and writing process. Do you have a question you'd like to see the authors answer? Tweet it to @aNextAuthor!

What is the best writing advice you've ever heard?
Read and write everyday!
When you start a new story do you prepare an outline in advance or do you just jump right in?
I usually create an outline to keep track of all the essential components needed within the story and to help prevent irrelevant plot lines or distractions.
How do you deal with writing criticism, apart from just ignoring it?
I don't think it's wise to completely ignore criticism. Although it may be harsh, it is still beneficial to know your reader's reactions so you can make any necessary changes for future writing.
America's Next Author has been running for almost 8 weeks. If you could re-submit now, would you change anything about your story?
I would probably try to rework some parts to try to enhance the story more. I also would've tried to finish it sooner so I could submit it earlier in the competition!



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Brilliant! Great read! Loved it!

kim o

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Very interesting story! The twist was awesome! I also like your banner. Nicely edited and written. I hope you make it to the finals!

i love math

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I'm not usually a fan of science fiction, but I thought the ending was fantastic! It completely came by surprise! Good read. I liked the mystery that led to everything. Great job.

Wendy and Charles

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Very well done! It was a very good story that left me wanting to read more! I hope you do well in the competition!


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Everyone has already said everything I could ever say about this story. I found myself relating to the main character because I remember being like that in school...I would have to agree with albert1 about Eva's nervousness because without that crucial plot device the entire story wouldn't come together the way it did. Like the title, I noticed fate to be an important thing to remember when reading. I know it may be frustrating for some people, but I like stories that are open for interpretation. I like ambiguity and the shared Frankenstein themes and everything! It left me wondering what she would do in the end! It's interesting how we can have many different discussions about this story. Not alot stories I have come across in this writing contest can spark much thought-provoking conversation at all. I wanted to keep reading and learning more about Eva's future and past. Keep writing! "The Fate Continuum" deserves to be in the final rounds! You are clearly good at it...I hope you are able to win. Loved the end and loved the story. Great job!! I am a fan!


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Sweet story! I thought this had a reallllllly cool idea. Any fans of time travel & science fiction would love this. Its quite interesting reading the story unfold. Also, your Frankenstein quote really set you apart from the others in this contest. Even though this is only a short story and you were unable to fully develop everything, the Frankenstein quote gave clues about your ideas and themes that I don't think that some the other people even thought about for this contest. The ending was completely unexpected. Your writing is great with very minimal mistakes. I also thought it was ironic how you wrote about a contest for a contest. I hope you win and I look forward to reading more of your cool time travel stories! Good luck and hopefully your "future/past" self isn't trying to ruin your chances in THIS contest!


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I'm just not a SciFi fan, but I'm afraid I read this right after reading Captain Underpants #9 with my kids and it explains time travel according to "the banana cream pie paradox". It made it impossible for me to read this with the seriousness the author intended. It's not you, it's me. I'm sorry.


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I thought that was a compelling story. I found myself wanting a little more. Maybe a longer version or a sequel perhaps. Your writing style is palatable enough on its own but combined with this interesting story idea and I feel you have a winner. I hope to read more from you in the future.


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I really liked this story! You have a very good grasp of writing, I thought I could guess the end, but I was wrong! I would love this to be a longer story. If I was as nervous as Eva, I probably would have second guessed if I should call them on the science teacher. Sometimes in life you can get so nervous that you do second guess yourself, even know something seems wrong! Great writing and good luck!

M.J. Milner

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This tightly constructed story makes excellent use of internal dialogue and has excellent story structure. The arc of the hero builds effectively adding a note of suspense. I love science fiction and hope you get more science into the story next time. One of the best stories in the the contest. I'm giving it a vote as well. Thanks!


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Nice story. Well written, few times you used "Eva" too much, but who am I to talk? We are all just learning! Hope to read more from you soon...

Angelina Dees

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I have read many sci-fi stories over the years. I had an inkling of how this was going to turn out but I believe out the the many time traveling situations I've read, yours was presented the best. The robotic like quality to Eva made sense to me. Most people with higher intelligence have cut themselves off from their emotions to concentrate solely on what they wish to learn. Once they are made to encounter them again they often become flustered and unable to do what they must for whatever project they are working on. I very much enjoyed this story and believe you could possibly turn it into a longer piece if you so wished. That is by no means saying that it doesn't stand alone though. Good luck, it is obvious that you are very talented.


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Amazing story and it had me from the beginning! Definitely someone I would want to read more of. Good luck in the contest but from the looks of it, luck has nothing to do with it- talent does- and you have it!


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Great story science fiction is not the genre that usually attracts my eye, but this piece was well constructed and in need of praise. Your doing great! Keep it up

Aunt Tiff

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Great Read!

cookie joy

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Great story. Very well written. I never saw the surprise ending coming. Looking forward to reading more of your work.


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This was great! I was drawn in from the beginning. Well thought out and super fun!

J.R. Verwey

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This was a nice read. Your story was put together well. I would love to see more from you. Give me a read if you get the chance.

fan of the pen

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Very good writing! I initially thought that it would be great writing but would ultimately be boring. I was wrong! I found myself caught up in the story. I didn't want it to end. I guess it helps that there is time travel involved. I love science fiction. I'm very impressed with the author's choice of wording in this piece. Can't wait to read more and see how it ends!


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I really liked it! It had me enthralled even though I have a hard time reading on my computer, I am a fan!

Ann Mason

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This was a terrific story, one that kept me engaged to the very end! Combining fast-paced writing, a sympathetic main character and an irresistable mystery that kept me guessing, The Fate Continuum is a great read! Five heartfelt stars!

Peter Lahanas

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Some may have seen my reviews and my ratings and probably roll their eyes. (Oh, here's that Peter guy again. More four or five stars...sheesh) but I give credit where credit is due. I cannot get over how much talent is in this competition. I don't envy the judges having to pick a winner. So many excellent stories, just like this one. It's a well paced, well written, intelligently laid out short story with a fantastic twist. The character is realistic in her speech, if you take into account the appropriate Frankenstein quote. And the ending brings this to light. It all fits in perfectly. So, yes, another five star rating, well deserved. Well done 'Margaret.' I'm betting your great aunt is very proud.

Darlene Elizabeth Williams

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A well written story with an unexpected ending. Good work!

Jester Queen

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The twist at the end is breathtaking. I couldn't figure out why all these people had it in for her. I couldn't decide whether she had actually saved herself or made it worse in the end, though, by stopping herself!


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I really enjoyed your story. I thought the ending was awesome! The Frankenstein quote made sense after I knew the ending. I thought that Eva's characterization was actually accentuated by the "stiff" dialogue...she is such a brainiac that the "machine-like" qualities actually makes sense. Her whole life is surrounded by knowledge, so any other detail would've been distracting from the purpose of this great story. All in all, it was a really unique story. Well done!

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December 18th, 2012
The winner of America's Next Author 2012 has been announced! [...]
December 7th, 2012
Questions and answers about the Battle Round. [...]
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#ANA2012 | What Fans Have To Say


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