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  1. Monica, like me, I see you're choosing to focus on one character for your project. Being able to take a deep dive into someone's backstory is so beneficial as we go through this class. We learn about so many different people, it can be hard to feel a connection with one. In the stories we've read, some of the most interesting characters have been characters we may not see as "main characters," so it's always refreshing to learn more about them. From your intro, I'd love to know more about where you plan to go with your stories. Are you going to be retelling her history, or will you be writing some of your own stories that we may not know through the in-class readings? Either way, being able to become attached to a character is always an awesome way to learn more about the stories we read. Looking forward to seeing where you go with your stories!

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  2. Hey Monica!

    Okay, first of all, I'm so excited that you chose to focus on Draupadi for your storybook! While reading the Mahabharata, I was in love with her character. She was outspoken, had 5 husbands, and is clearly written to be very smart. I'm kinda icky about the whole "serves her man" kinda vibe, but she is a super awesome female character. It seems from your introduction that you're going to focus on her struggles in her life? It's kind of hard to tell the direction you plan to take with the stories from the introduction. I think if you added more about the project, it would make the reader even more excited to go through your project. Also, maybe it would be interesting to hear the intro from Draupadi's POV? What if she explained her crazy life and what it's like to be an icon? That could add more of a story element to your intro. I'm going to bookmark this story so I can read more! Good luck :)

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  3. Hey Monica, I just read through your storybook work you've done thus far. I love your choice of character to focus on, Draupadi is definitely one of the most interesting characters in the Mahabharata. I like that she sort of breaks away from the patriarchal themes that seem so common thus far, and represents a powerful and strong-willed woman. I learned a few new things about Draupadi from your introduction, and am looking forward to more detailed accounts of her unique story.
    I have been reading the public domain edition of the Mahabharata, and the dialogue for Draupadi is scarce, despite her decisions and feelings playing major parts in the plot. Have the comic books you've been drawing inspiration from give more insight into her tone and personality? If so, is there any insight into what that might look like?
    Looking forward to reading more work from you!

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  4. Hi Monica!

    I LOVE that you are focusing on Draupadi for your storybook! I will be writing about Draupadi's birth story in my storybook, so I am very excited to read your piece. Will you be writing about her birth story? It will surely be interesting to compare our different takes on it if you do! She is an amazing and powerful female character in the Mahabharata and she defnitely deserves to be the main character in her own series. Her life is so interesting, I bet you will have a lot of material to write about and make your own. I like that you are going to explore this character and give her diminsion by exploring her life and feelings from the most powerful moments to the vulnerable ones. I wonder if you will tell Draupadi's stories in first person or third person? It would be super cool to hear Draupadi narrate her biography, maybe turning it into an autobiography would be cool! Anyway, your storybook will be amazing however you decide to write it, and I look forward to reading all of it! :)

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  5. Hi Monica!

    I thought your introduction did a really good job of peaking my interest in Draupadi. I really liked the way you shared your own thoughts on her story. As for her birth story, I thought it was really interesting that you started with the scene of Draupadi standing in the snow. I assume you're planning to get back to that in a later story and it definitely makes me want to keep reading. The ending of the first story on the other hand to feel a little abrupt to me though. I think it might work better if you deleted the final sentence and just ended with "she was named Draupadi" instead. Also I really like both of the pictures you used so far but I kind of wish the text resumed under the picture instead of just having a really long column all the way down the page. Keep up the good work!

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  6. Hi Monica! I think that it is really cool that you decided to focus on a single character for your project this semester. I did the opposite and am not even sticking with the same story as I am working on a portfolio so I am excited to see what you do with your project this semester. I just wrote about Satyavati, the girl born from the fish, and I think it is way more exciting to be reading about a girl who was born from fire. I really enjoyed Draupadi's story and I am looking forward to reading your take on her as your storybook progresses through the semester. With your storybook I think that it would be really interesting if you gave a more in-depth point of view form Draupadi as in the Mahabharata we do not get to see that as much. I look forward to reading more of this story!

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  7. Hello!

    I just read your introduction for your storybook. First, I have to say you did a great job in explaining what your storybook is going to be about. You explained it well enough that I understand it. I don’t exactly remember Draupadi, but I appreciate that you’re writing about a strong heroine! I also enjoyed how you stated that even though she’s a tough woman, she still experienced vulnerability. I think when it comes to men, they’re expected to always be strong and independent but we end up forgetting that they’re human too. Further into your introduction, I can see why Draupadi stood out to you. Draupadi’s bravery is seen by standing up to the two the kings which surprised me. For some reason, I have a notion that if any women defies or talks back to a king, that woman is immediately scolded. However, Draupadi did not get scolded so I’m super impressed. I think it’s also super cool that Draupadi is a feminist considering the genre and how patriarchal the setting was. The only thing I would work on is the ending of your intro; some sentences could be revised. Overall, good job on your intro!

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  8. Hello Again!
    I read your first story. After reading it, I think you should look over the beginning. There are some sentences that could use some revising. Maybe you could add some dialogue in the first paragraph. When I read the sentence that says “how can the fiercest women of Mahabharata end up like this?”, I imagined it as the woman’s thoughts. It’d be cool to take the audience into the woman’s mind as she’s asking herself the question.
    The second paragraph also needs some revisions. I liked the use of imagery when you described King Drupada’s face. The description of the King’s ritual was interesting to read. After reading the ending, I have some questions. What prevented King Drupada from making Draupadi his wife? I get the king wanted a son so why didn’t he just try to have a son with the woman that walked out of the fire. I think the ending could use some more work. For example, the last sentence could use more detail like who was the heavenly voice. I also think that making the last sentence into dialogue would make the overall story better.

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  9. Hi Monica!

    I love that you are doing a story on Draupadi! She is my all time favorite character from the Mahabharata. One thing I would say is that the spacing in the fourth paragraph seems odd for the dialogue. One thing I like to do when I write in dialogue is provide a different line when each character is speaking. Also, I am not sure wether its just King Draupada speaking, or if someone else is joining him, because I'm seeing two different quotations. You depicted the story of her birth so well, though! And I like the imagery of the introduction, and how you ended with having us think how she could end up like that. It makes your readers want to continue on with your storybook!

    One last thing: your authors not is sort of hard to read. I had the same problem too! Maybe instead of putting it in the footer you could just create a separate text box, so we don't have a hard time reading it.

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  10. I liked that you’ve chosen Draupadi as your main heroine in the storybook. Like you've mentioned in the introduction, she was very ahead for her days and for sure is one of the strongest female leads in the epics we read. I liked that you decided to start your portfolio by simply retelling the story of how Draupadi was born since that is such a special part of her persona. I think one question I had when reading was why you included the side story about Drona and King Drupada? I personally like that it gives you more insight into the other components of Draupadi's story, but I can also see how it takes away the focus from Draupadi herself. I don’t think you necessarily need to remove it, but maybe someone else reading your story would have similar questions. Overall, I think one way you could improve is by adding dialogue. I think that could help break the story up a little more! Overall, great job!

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  11. Monica,

    Hi, this is my first time coming to your project and I must say that I do enjoy it! Draupadi was also one of my favorite characters that we have read about so far. She went through so much and was yet so loyal the entire time. It really created some respect. You did an excellent job introducing her and letting people know just what she is made of in case they missed it the first time! I remember literally feeling bad for her in the gambling hall. It actually got me mad haha. That is one of the main reasons I wrote about the fight between Arjuna and Karna because I felt like Karna needed to be punished for doing that to her. The story behind her birth was very informative and taught me many things I didn't know about her. I think you are doing a great job with your stories, and giving Draupadi the attention she deserves!

    Jake

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  12. Hi Monica,

    First off, I love the layout of your project with the fire scheme and how you included that throughout all of your different pages. I chose to read "The Birth of Draupadi" and I really enjoyed it. I chose to read this one first in order to have an idea of who Draupadi is and get familiar with her backstory. I think you did a great job of telling the story with description and imagery. As the reader, I feel like I personally could feel the sharp pain in my foot that you described. Also, I love how Draupadi was the strong, powerful woman, who was originally intended to be a son. Something about it makes her seem even more fierce as you had described. I agree with Jacob, who was talking about how informative this reading was. I also did not know that many things about her so I enjoyed how you let us get to know her before the other story she is in. Overall, I loved reading what you had to write about Draupadi.

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  13. Hi Monica!! I’ve loved reading your stories in the past and I’m happy to have the chance to revisit them! Overall, I think your author’s note does a really good job setting the scene for each of the stories. I think giving background information as you did in the "Behind her Birth” story is very important because all that information plays a very important role in story, but you can not put all of it in the original story. I think some feedback I have is although I like that your author's note is separate from the rest of the story, the font is a little hard to read. I would suggest maybe making it bigger, so we can read it better. But continue keeping it separate from the rest of the story! Another suggestion I have is maybe adding a personal touch to your note, like why you chose the stories you did. I think that can allow you to connect with the reader more and they kinda find out your perspectives on the stories too! Overall, a great job!

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  14. Hi Monica! I really enjoyed both of the stories that you have written in your Storybook. As I give feedback I will be focusing on your Author's Note. I really like how you explain one thing that you want your readers to get out of your story in your Author's Note: a better view of the personality of the characters. Personally, I believe you have done this in the story "Behind Her Birth" by explaining the past relationships between some of the characters. Furthermore, in the story "Becoming the Wife of Pandavas." you have given your characters more visible personalities through dialogue between them. I like both of these ideas! Therefore, my suggestion would be to do both these items (provide background on past and a lot of dialouge) for each story. This is just a small idea, but I also recommend that the format of the Author's Note for both stories to be the same? This is obviously a very small suggestion; however, I feel like it can help with consistency between each chapter. Overall, I believe you have written great stories! Keep it up!

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  15. Hi Monica!

    Last time I saw your storybook, you only had the introduction page finished. Clearly, a lot has changed, and I am so proud of how your storybook turned out!! I actually just finished the last story to my storybook about Draupadi's birth story, so I was super excited to see how your storybook turned out. I also wondered how our retellings of Draupadi's birth story would compare and contrast with my own. I love how you started the story off with such great imagery of Draupadi stumbling through the snow covered Himalayan Mountains, so good!! I could definitely imagine Drupada's face while tearing his room up after Drona conquered half of the kingdom. The thought of Drupada having a temper tantrum like that is hilarious! I thought that the description of the ritual could've used a little bit more detail just so the audience can really picture the scene and the intensity of the moment, but that is really my only critique. Thank you for writing such a great storybook, I really enjoyed all of the stories and learning more about Draupadi and her life! :) Amazing work!!

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