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275 Public Reviews Given
275 Total Reviews Given
Public Reviews
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1
1
for entry "The Unconquered
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | N/A (Review only item.)
A neat take on the Headless Horseman! I don't remember much about the story other than the spooky stuff, but I enjoyed it.

I do want to mention one thing: "The rider advanced, remorseless." Since he is still in shadow and at a distance, how would Ike/Ichabod know if he was remorseless? That's a mind-set, so maybe he advanced in stony silence? Something along those lines.

JMHO!


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2
2
for entry "A Solstice Gnome
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | N/A (Review only item.)
I know you are limited by the word count but a couple of things.

You start out with the MC as "Mandy" but then change her name to "Ruby" about halfway through.

Perhaps give us a quick clue about what might have happened. Maybe she hears a report on the television about a mysterious fire in Tulsa overnight.

JMHO!


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3
3
for entry "Fire on the Mountain
Review by Alex Morgan
Rated: 18+ | N/A (Review only item.)
*Laugh**Laugh**Laugh**Laugh**Laugh*

Yeah, this one started out kinda dark, but then ended up with that song running through my head. Thanks, Max.


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4
4
Review of The Fun House  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi, Tom Buck . I came across your story in this week's Horror/Scary Newsletter. Congratulations on being highlighted!

I thoroughly enjoyed reading your story. It is definitely a "page-turner". I like the way you introduced the characters as being friends and challenging each other.

But it is the setting that really makes this story exciting and scary. I don't think an abandoned amusement park has been used quite as effectively as you did. You brought new life to the setting by using a funhouse with all its gimmicks and tricks to something we've seen before and bumped up the horror a notch. Or two. *Smile*

Great job! Thank you for the scary read!
Alex


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
5
5
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi, Humble_Poet ! I came across your story under the "By Online Authors" link. I'm glad I did. I love the tongue-in-cheek humor of "why did the chicken cross the road?" It offers new insight on their motives, goals, and reasons we never even knew existed.

So the society has launched a new $2.7M study to figure out why the "grass is always greener on the other side"?

Their conclusions might be as interesting.

But probably not.

Thank you for the laugh,
Alex


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
6
6
Review of The Moonlight  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hi, JessTheMess . I came across your story in the Read a Newbie section. I enjoyed reading it, especially the little twist at the end. I think some of us readers were expecting the wolf to attack, instead of retreating. Nice touch.

One of the things I noticed is switching from past tense to present tense. It's confusing when you go back and forth, so pick a tense, and stick with it.

Also, go easy on the adverbs. It's something that I still struggle with. The first two paragraphs have eight adverbs in them, so try to describe the action without using a lot of adverbs.

Great job! Welcome to WDC!


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7
7
Review of The Book of Jeff  
for entry "Do Ya Wanna Taste It
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Seeing John Cena (swoon!) stone-faced with dorky dance moves is hysterical! And Robert Patrick doing a pelvic thrust. Love it!

I had not heard of Wig Wam before, so this song is a great introduction.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
8
8
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi, Dylan. I came across your story in the "Read a Newbie" section. The title is a great hook, but I didn't see in the story where anyone had crossed the main character. He has an unrequited love with his counselor, but that's not crazy at all. *Laugh* Were you planning to write a follow-up or expand on this story?

The blurb for your story says the 18 year-old is mentally ill, but he seems normal to me. Uh-oh. Maybe that means I am, too? LOL

Great read, Dylan!
Thanks!


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9
9
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi, Stephen. Congratulations on being featured in this week's Horror Newsletter.

Great story and I enjoyed reading it. I was confused a bit about the parenthetical question marks: (?)

"It took a couple of minutes to find the right door. At first, I thought they found the right front door to enter the house. Then I realized they found the "right" door where Bill was feeling the bad vibes?

Thanks for the great read!


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10
10
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | N/A (Review only item.)
Wonderful story, Max! I love the Star Wars references. You wrote Yoda so well I read it in his voice!

Thanks!


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11
11
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with The Sci-fi Writers Guild  
Rated: 13+ | (3.0)
Hi, shyguy42 . I came across your story in the “Please Review” page. I enjoy the fantasy, magic, action/horror, and gay themes included here.

I made some comments/suggestions below, but remember they are my humble opinion only. Take what suggestions you like and ignore the rest. This is your story!

First thing, your story could benefit from a simple review for spelling, punctuation, grammar, spacing, extra words, and repeated words. Another reviewer mentioned avoiding adverbs, and I totally agree. The word ‘quickly’ is used a lot. When writing action scenes, trust the reader knows that a lot is happening very rapidly, so we will read ‘quickly’ into a lot of places without having the word on the page. *Smile*

Another thing to be aware of is avoid ‘telling’. At the beginning, the story was in the pov of the elf and was well-written. Great job! But starting with “The sealed door was their only…” it felt as if someone else was reading the story to me. It is important to ‘show’ the reader instead of ‘tell’. Keep the story in the elf’s point of view. Think about:

“I don’t have to remind you that this door is our only way out of this labyrinth,” the elf shouted.

“Yes, dear,” the orc responded. “I’m trying to make out the language on this lock, but it’s in an ancient dialect and I need time to decipher it.”

With growing alarm, the elf noticed more undead, entering the chamber and approaching them.”


Just a suggestion.

Give your characters names so you don’t have to keep writing ‘the elf’ and ‘the orc’ all the time. Since this is fantasy, you can make up names! *Laugh*

What I liked best is having gay male main characters. I think we need more LGBT content in fantasy stories! I find it interesting that an orc is one of the main characters and in a compassionate, heroic role. Usually they are depicted as evil beings, so this is a refreshing twist on the them.
I also liked the hook at the beginning of the chapter. Right away, we are in the midst of the action and that helps reel in the reader. Try to come up with a hook at the end of the chapter to make the reader want to read more. It seems that they found the heirloom they were looking for? What do they plan to do with it now?

Great job! I look forward to reading more about the elf and the orc!

Alex

Comments/Suggestions/Corrections:

The elf swung one of his axes plunged an axe in the ribs of one of the undead warriors an undead warrior. Quickly he followed up by burying his second axe in its neck, taking its head clean off. He kicked the body away towards another a second undead who swatted the headless body away with its shield. Taking advantage of the opening the elf rushed in and with a twirl and a battle cry added another beheading to his count. As the body undead fell he quickly turned to his left, blocking a Warhammer strike by dropping to his knees and catching the shaft in the cross of his axes. A terrible roar left the undeads' undead’s mouth as he pulls pulled at the hammer attempting to free it. The elf willed himself to stand firm, his tired arms struggling to to hold the hammer, and the fool creature holding it , in place [Check the punctuation here.] He glanced behind, sweat nearly dripping in his eye, and yelled ,.

[New paragraph]

'Beloved, I must insist that you hurry up. I cant can’t protect you from this many undead for long.'

'I'm going as fast as I can !' Shouted his Orc companion shouted, standing in front of the mechanism built into the door, sealing it.

Flanked by two statues of warriors from a forgotten time. [Use a comma here instead of a period.] The Orc mages' mages usual rough low tone of voice had a panicked edge to it. His eyes {x]}dated darted from the opened book he held and the lock.'

[New paragraph.]

I need to get this right or this place will be our tomb.'

The sealed door was their only why out of the mountain labyrinth now, the way they came in now cut off by the undead. The only hope they had to open it was to translate the language written on the lock itself. However the language was as old as the statues and his lover needed time to decipher it…

[This is all telling.]


His aim ring true and his target dropped as well but unlike the pervious previous combatant not permanently.

He gasped in pain, turning his head to see the the ugly face undead that had stabbed him. The elf gathered his strength a headbutted the zombie away. Only to turn into a shield, bashing him square in the face. As he fell to the floor the zombie warriors gathered around him, getting ready to bludgeon him to death with whatever weapons they had. Suddenly the chamber filled with sunlight causing the undead to groan and shield themselves. They were then attacked by a barrage of fire balls.
[Try to avoid passive voice. Consider: “Without warning, a barrage of fire balls swarmed the zombies, igniting their tattered clothing.” Another author might word it better. *Smile*]


I trust you still have the the item?'




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
12
12
Review of Bar None  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi, M. S. Bird . I came across your story in the Short Story newsletter this week. Congratulations on being spotlighted!

I enjoyed your story, even though not a lot of questions were answered. Who is the main character? Who is the bartender? Who was Leah and what happened to her?

Still the story kept my interest from the opening sentence, which is a great hook. I could see this played out in a Sin City-type movie with Bruce Willis or Mickey Rourke. It read that way to me.

Great job!
Alex


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13
13
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi, PennyInPocket . I came across your story in the "Please Review" section and enjoyed it very much. It does get a little stomach-churning at the end but still a great read.

My favorite line:

"Sacrilege, I won't allow you to contaminate my consummate potion with such poisons."

Thank you for the chuckle!
Alex


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14
14
Review by Alex Morgan
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi, Jillian Montgomery . I came across your poem in the "Read a Newbie" section.

Your words convey a son's anguish over his mother's silence or non-communication with clarity. One can easily hear the hurt in the son's words.

Just a couple of things.

The past is over and I know I'm to blame 2258773

[The bitem number for this item is at the end of the first line. I don't think you want it there. *Smile*]

I'm ready to forgetand forgive.

[Add a space between "forget" and "and".]

Write on!


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15
15
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hi, HeartStyle . I came across your story in the "Read a Newbie" section.

Your story could benefit a lot from just simple spell-checking, punctuation correction, and formatting. For example, when Grace's parents are talking, start a new paragraph.

Be sure to check for consistency. In the opening sentence, you introduce Grace as a young girl, but later, we learn that she is past 16. So she is in her mid to late teens.

It's best to end with a great hook, something to make the reader want to keep reading. *Smile*

Write on!
Alex


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16
16
Review of To be young again  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with The Soundtrackers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi, Dale Ricky . I came across your work from the "Read a Newbie" page. I enjoyed your article on to be young again. I think you ask questions nearly all of us do when reach a certain age. What would we do if we had the chance to be young again. Counselor Deanna Troi from Star Trek: The Next Generation said we'd all love to get a second chance at life without the pain of growing up.

Your story also reminds me of the Twlight Zone episode Kick the Can about elderly people getting the chance to become young again.

One little nit-picky thing:

"...crushing the bottle to through throw it away."



Thank you for a thought-provoking essay!



*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
17
17
Review of Night Terrors  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with The Soundtrackers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi, Author Joseph J. Madden . I came across your work in the "Read a Newbie" section. I enjoy a good horror story and yours did not disappoint. It has a great hook at the beginning and kept my interest until the end. Great job!

A couple of things I noticed.

"...he grabbed the Winchester rifle from over the door that had belonged to his father." When I first read this, I thought the door belonged to his father. *Laugh* Perhaps: "...he grabbed the Winchester that belonged to his father from over the door."

"The boy had broken bones and never showed...". Earlier Dan finds his son unharmed and then I read this sentence, thinking that he actually had been hurt in the attack, but realized you must have been referring to past experiences. Thank about: "The boy had broken bones before but never showed..."

JMHO!
Great job!
Alex
18
18
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi, Philippe ! I came across your story in the "Read a Newbie" section. I enjoyed reading your story about Willie Pete.

I have never heard of the term "Misery-Guts" but it quickly became apparent. *Laugh* I especially like the scene at the funeral, where Uncle Tom and the rest of the large family all seem to be cut from the same cloth. And the story about Aunty Gwen.

I was confused about one sentence though:

"Well, it came to pass one day that old Willie Pete did too,..."

What did Willie do? Did you mean to say "died" instead?

Great story!
Alex


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19
19
Review of Midnight Spirit  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi Burning Boat ! I came across your work in the "Read a Newbie" section. I usually don't review poetry but your dark poem captured my interest. I enjoyed reading it, especially how it becomes a portent of things to come.

It reminded me of the Twilight Zone episode Spur of the Moment when a young woman on a horse keeps getting chased and terrorized by an older version of herself.

Great job!
Alex


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20
20
Review by Alex Morgan
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi, Brian Chase ! I know you haven't been on in a while but I came across your work while searching for satire.

I really enjoy the tongue-in-cheek humor of the terrors of sea gulls, those Masters of Evils! *Laugh*

But I especially liked the part about taking notes on who roots for the Seahawks and Eagles, but importantly Jets and Patriots! Love that! *HeartP* (I'm a Ravens fan!)

Great piece!
Alex
21
21
Review of Broken Past  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi, Bruce Myers ! I like your story. It has a great hook at the beginning and at the end. I want to keep reading. Good job!

I have some comments and suggestions, but remember they are my humble opinion only. If you like a suggestion, great! If not, just ignore and move on. It is your story!

Perhaps in the beginning, a little more "showing" than "telling". Instead of telling us Sarah is confused and scared, show us. The next sentence shows us she is confused: "How is she here?" So consider adding something to show us she is scared. Maybe the eerie silence unnerves her, or a slight noise outside makes her jump and shriek. JHMO. *Smile*

The walls are peeling at the seems with the dirty yellow color, moss slowly eating away at the cement as if it were a monster of the plants.

I'm thinking that you mean the wallpaper is peeling off the cement walls? If so, how about "Wallpaper peeled at the seams, exposing the cement behind, being consumed by moss." Another author might word it better.

At the beginning of Chapter 1, we read...
Sarah stepped out of the room to see what would be wating waiting beyond..."

Then in the last sentence of the same paragraph: "...she stepped out of the room." She steps out of the room twice. *Laugh*

Lastly, avoid passive voice and use active voice instead. For example: "It was a long corridor with what seemed to be no end. Its smell was musty and smelled of urine." Consider: "She peered down a long corridor that seemed to extend into eternity. The smell of mildew and urine assaulted her nose."

Great start, Bruce! I look forward to reading more of your work!


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22
22
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with The Sci-fi Writers Guild  
Rated: 18+ | (2.5)
Hi, PureSciFi . I came across your story in the “Please Review” page.

My comments are just my humble opinion. If you like a suggestion, great. If not, just ignore it and move on it is your story.

I’m trying to figure out what is going on here, but it’s a little confusing. It starts with Nathum talking to forty people, saying the tour is over. What were they touring?

It appears that the group of people are going to be living in a tent for eight months, while they determine if they can live on the surface again after living underground. After the introduction, nothing else is said about their mission.

The rest of the story goes back and forth from being bored and how long they have been there. Jassina mentions that they go there twice a year. So a year on Galvian is longer than sixteen months?

There also seems to be an issue with mixing males and females, but no indication of why that is a problem.

Then there is a mention of having fun, but what sort of fun are they having? Again, it seems that mixing males and females is contributing to the problem of having fun.

Your story would work better if there was a definite goal for the characters and whether they attain that goal or not. Nothing seemed to be resolved.

Also, there should be some conflict between some of the characters.

Adding these two elements to your story would make it work a lot better.

Write on!

“Most of you will be trying to solve the reason why we have been living within Galvian for almost nine hundred years,” continues Nathum. “And when we can return to living on Galvian again.”

I had to read this several times before I figured it out (I think). The people have been living underground on Galvian, and are hoping to return to living on the surface? If so, consider making it clearer than just switching prepositions.

Is it important that the reader be aware there are twenty-seven males, not counting Nathum, and thirteen females?

And nothing has changed. Except for us being both male and female here.”

Jassina says nothing has changed except for them being male and female. What has changed about them? Have some of them changed genders? *Shock*

Almost two hours later Jassina returns. “You have been gone a long time. Is there something wrong?”

Why is Jassina asking that question? She is the one who has been gone. Who responds to her question? Cacspon?

What do they need protecting from? Who took the time “protecting us”?

“Sorry about that,” says Patrinna. “But I didn’t get too much sleep last night because of some fun after the day was over for our us.”

“It sounds like your boredom problem is going away,” says Patrinna smiling. “It’s about time. I was starting to think that mixing males and females there wasn’t going to solve it either.”


Did you mean for Nathum to speak the second line? Having Patrinna speak both parts is confusing.

All we do know is that we have been here three-fourths of six four and a half months.



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23
23
Review of Double Wide  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Hi, 🌕 HuntersMoon ! I came across this poem in the Comedy genre search. I definitely love the rhyming scheme. It seems to be the only one I get.

The references to the tramp stamp and thong peeking out were funny! And then the red-neck portion of it could be made into a country song. (If it hasn't already *Laugh*])

Thank you for the laugh!
Alex


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24
24
Review of Margie's gone!  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi, BlueJay ! I just hate when an interdimensional doorway to an alternate universe opens up in my kitchen! *Laugh*

I enjoyed reading your short story. The by-line or introduction has a good hook and the story continues at a pleasant pace, keeping the reader's interest but continually hinting that something is about to happen.

When it does, the reader is looking for more! That's the reaction writers want from their readers!

Great job!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
25
25
Review of Missing  
Review by Alex Morgan
In affiliation with Cross Timbers Peer Reviewers  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi, Anni Pon . I can't even imagine what someone who has lost a limb, hand, or foot must have to deal with. Your poem does give the reader a glimpse into the heartache they must endure on a daily basis. It certainly does keep us aware that people who have lost a body part are still a whole human being.

Well done!

Write on!


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