America's Next Author background
Rachael Makowski writing contest
Tweets by Rachael Makowski

Rachael Makowski

From California to Wyoming, Oklahoma to Colorado, I've lived and experienced many different lifestyles. I am in love with my best friend, I am more of a dog person, and I enjoy any and all forms of physical activity. I have written since I was able to form sentences with a pencil in my hand. I love story telling most of all and I feel I do it best with the written word. My life has afforded me many experiences. I've been homeless for a short time, fatherless almost my whole life, both a country and a city dweller and have been called a Yank and a redneck. Although I seem like a living contradiction, I am truly a country girl and although my husband owns my heart, I left it in the mountains of Wyoming. I hope you enjoy my short story as much as I enjoyed writing it. I leave a piece of myself in everything I do and never leave well enough alone.

Story: Checking Out


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?
Write everyday. When I'm at my lowest in creative juices and I write endless babble, something eventually comes to me. It is inevitable.
When you start a new story do you prepare an outline in advance or do you just jump right in?
I've done both. I stick to an outline when the story is complex and certain things HAVE to happen at certain times, when the story has to be more structured, but I'm still pretty flexible.



Rating starRating starRating starRating star
I enjoyed it, and the twist at the end was unexpected - I had anticipated that she would be in a mental institution. Although I agree with another commenter, that there were no hints in the story indicating that ending, and there should have been something the reader could look back on and say, "Ahhh... that makes sense." It is in need of a good editor, as was mentioned, but overall it's fairly well written and interesting.

Hannah Webb

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
Wow! What a twist! I loved this! I felt as if i was experiencing it myself. I could almost taste the apple! I would love to read more from this author!

Heidi N

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
I loved it. Defenitely made you feel that you were a part of the story. Very descriptive. I wanted to read more!! Really got into the mind of the character...made it very real!!

Margaret S.

Rating starRating star
As a writer, Mrs. Makowski has talent, passion, and drive, but she needs a good editor who will make sure that readers don't end up writing comments like the following. The ending of "Checking Out" was a clever surprise but not worth wading through the dense thicket of unpruned text that preceded it. The story is rife with plot and character inconsistencies and misuse of language. Nothing in the character's ruminations hinted at how she could end up on death row. What heinous crime could such an introspective character possibly commit? Did she kill off her writing teacher for criticizing her use of jarring adjectival juxtapositions and wrong word choices? When the writer uses "fleshy" to describe the beige cafeteria tray, does she really want the reader to think the meal has been served on something that is soft, thick, juicy, or possibly pulpy? I could go on and on but I won't. Just promise to get an editor because, frankly, I really want you to have successful and satisfying career as a writer.

Anne (Valerie)

Rating starRating starRating star
Rare to see this situation written from a woman's POV. Sad, but well done.


Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
I love this story. Really made me see everything while I was reading, so descriptive. Bravo!!!!


Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
The story was short and sweet, filled with sublime detail. The author took something as simple as an apple and not only exploded the detail of taste out on paper, but i felt a mouth full of flavor, and it was mmmm mmm mmmm good, f@&%ing spectacular. The word "Bamboosal", comes to mind when (spoiler) the character is on death row. who would had thunked it...racheal thunked it...thunked the out of it. And i will aswell stop drinking my chacolate milk with a straw.

James A. Michener Fan

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
Exquisite, absolutely exquisite. From the first few lines, I knew i was in for an exciting and surprising conclusion. A buffet of descriptive clarity to the surroundings and the predicament of the "Subject" and her situation that she found herself in. I have never seen French Fries described in such a salivating manner, i almost ran out and ordered some. Once again, Rachael Exquisite!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
Love the way her words draw you in at the can see the food, are grossed out by the food and you want to eat that apple!!! The ending that comes all too soon is fantastic and unexpected...good job !!!

not so goosey worm

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
Very absorbing. Rachel's descriptions drew me into her scene, easily enabling visualization of the items at hand, her props. Further, these word pictures draw one into the protagonist's mood and into the situation of this ironically well-remembered last meal.


Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
I love this story. I could actually feel myself sitting in this place, experiencing every description of color and texture, and sadly every last minute, every last bite, bringing the reader to the ultimate last disappointment. I will never look at a french fry in the same way again. A compelling read, well done. Kudos to Rachael Makowski!

Brant M

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
This is an awesome story! It is very thought provoking with exquisite detail. I felt like I was there, in the moment. I would love to read more from this author. Truly an amazing tale!!!

Jenn Semmons

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
The begining of this story hooked me and the ending was very surprising. I enjoyed the detail as it induced my five senses and I felt I was experiencing it for myself. I want to read more of this writer's material.

El Mac

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
It is very descriptive and the details were complete and gave me a good visualization. I could see a picture of the environment and smell and taste the food. Very nicely written, cant wait to read more!


Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
Absolutely wonderful!! And such a surprising twist at the end! It really takes the reader through the character's mind and leaves you so intrigued at the end!!

Peter Lahanas

Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
Wow, I didn't expect the ending! Just like karenp, it made me want to read it again and it's even better the second time around. The vivid descriptions kept me interested throughout the story's entirety and it's certainly a thought provoking tale. I loved it. Well done, your talent is obvious and hope to read more in the future. All the best.


Rating starRating starRating starRating starRating star
Loved it. I like reading a story with a twist at the end. It made me want to reread it knowing the outcome.

Leave a review

You have to be logged in to comment. Log in
Not a great read
December 18th, 2012
The winner of America's Next Author 2012 has been announced! [...]
December 7th, 2012
Questions and answers about the Battle Round. [...]
America's Next Author

#ANA2012 | What Fans Have To Say


America's Next Author is the first social writing contest. Friends, family, fans and publishing industry experts will read authors' submissions and nominate their favorite to be America's next major author. Everyone can participate!