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Review of Internet Joy  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi, Weirdone-Back in the games ,

Today I am reviewing "Internet Joy as part of the contest

FORUM
I Write in December-January-February  (E)
Write and review once a week for the three coldest months of the year.
#1906302 by Annette
.


*BulletB* Title: I love the title. I can almost hear the sarcasm dripping from it.

*BulletB* General impressions:

I'm not a great one when it comes to poetry. There are those on site who are much better versed in poetry than I am.

Your poem does conform to what you have described about this poetry form (admittedly I only knew that this poetry form is more about people, I didn't know it had the same number of syllables and in the same format as Haiku). You have the syllables correct (7-5-7), and it is about a human idiosyncrasy.

My own understanding is that while Haiku tend to be formal, Senryu are more usually funny. There is certainly humour in your poem, and it did give me a chuckle.

I can certainly relate to your Senryu, and have more than once wanted to give a browser a swift kick.

I have to use different browsers for different websites. For some reason Netflix doesn't work properly with my Chrome, the wordsearch funtion here on WDC doesn't work with my Internet Explorer, and don't even get me started on YouTube *Laugh*

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: Can't fault you here. You have all of your ducks in a row.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: Not being someone who gets poetry, I am not really in a position to offer any suggestions.

Thanks for sharing this item! Please keep on writing and best of luck in the contest!

Andy~NaNo'ing
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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi Maryann ,

Here's one of your Hydro Package reviews from "Invalid Item! Enjoy!

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.


*BulletB* General impressions:

Not coming from the US I haven't seen the entire series, but I have seen an episode or two of this (though that was many years ago). We had a similar show here in the UK in the 1970s called "Please Sir!"

I well remember those cruel 8am classes - I'm sure I even snored through several of them *Laugh* Only a fool or a madman could possibly try to cajole students that early in the morning with a question like "If your family were a drink, what would they be?"

I love the feel of your short story and I can see the sleepy kids with their heads on their desks. The fact you have used the names of the original kids adds a flavour that can sometimes be lacking in fanfics.


*BulletB* Favourite quotes: There are two, but I won't include the direct quotes here for fear of spoiling the story for anyone.

Boom Boom's answer was puerile and stereotypically teenager. To be honest it was the kind of answer I'd have come up with at that age *Laugh*

Mr Kotter's closing line was brilliant and gave me a good chuckle. In today's society he'd probably be dragged in front of a disciplinary hearing for saying it, but he really hit the nail on the head.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I didn't notice any technical errors in your story while I was reading.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: I have no suggestions for the story.

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This is one TV series they really need bring back. Thanks for reminding me of this classic *Bigsmile*

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


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Review of Bleeding Mercy  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 18+ | (3.0)
Hi violeteyes27 ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I chose to review your item “Bleeding Mercy” today as part of my “newly created static items” review requirement for "a very Wodehouse challenge.

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* Title: The title stands out and it grabs the reader’s attention.

*BulletB* General impressions:

Well, that was different. I have to admit I wasn’t entirely sure where you were going with this. I read a lot of erotica, but this was a bit of a voyage into the unknown for me. It’s not exactly my idea of erotica, and it’s not really something I’d usually read.

You keep the reader engaged as Mr Eve does his thing, and it is very easy to feel sympathy for the Mercy character. Your descriptions are vivid and it is easy to see the scenes being played out.

You have done a good job with the actual writing of this story, and I liked it from that perspective. I didn’t particularly enjoy the content, but that’s only my personal taste. I’m sure there will be members who like to read the darker BDSM side of things, but sorry, that’s not me.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation:

Although I didn’t notice any spelling issues, I did notice two problem areas: one is your punctuation of speech tags and the other is that you are including different speakers in the same paragraph.

Both of these make it very difficult for your story to have a steady flow as these two things are constantly noticed by the reader and they end up stopping reading and making the mental corrections themselves.

Whenever you change speaker you must start a new line, even if each character is only saying a few words. For example:
“Morning, Mum.”
“Morning, Jim.”

Speech tags are things like 'he said', 'she said', 'Michael yelled', 'Johnny whispered' etc. (i.e. they are something 'tagged' to the speech when you let us know which character is talking).

Whenever you use a speech tag, you can only use a comma, question mark, or exclamation mark before the close speech marks, and the first word after the close speech marks always begins with a lowercase letter (except in cases where the first word after the close speech marks is a person's name or 'I' when writing in first person POV).


*BulletB* Line by line suggestions:

These are included in the dropnote below. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes/explanations for the change are in orange.

I have used ellipsis points (. . .) to indicate where I have not quoted entire sections of your text and have only included the relevant bits.

I have highlighted a few of the speech tags and the paragraphs where you have more than one person speaking, but you will need to go through your story fully and make the remaining corrections yourself.

Line by line suggestions

*BulletB* Other suggestions:

First, I think this is a bit much for an 18+ and you may want to think about changing the rating to GC.

Second, I don’t think “Part One”, “Part Two” etc. adds anything to the story. If anything, it sticks out like a leg trying to trip someone up. I get that you are using it to indicate time jumps in your story, but you can accomplish this just as easily by having two carriage returns between the paragraph instead of just one and your story will look a little tidier.

Thirdly, you may want to consider deleting the line Contains possible spoiler!!
It kind of gives some of the plot away, and takes away something from the ending of the story.


*BulletB* Closing remarks:

Overall, this was a well-written story with an unexpected ending. You just need to brush up on the nuts and bolts of writing, so that you can present your story in an easily readable format.


Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

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Review of january reviews  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Hi Apondia ,

I chose to review your item “january reviews” today as part of my “newly created static items” review requirement for "a very Wodehouse challenge.

I also take part in the Monthly Reading Challenge and I love your idea for including all of your reviews in a static item. I actually had a look at your folder and was amazed to find your reviews going all the way back to September 2013.

You have read books from different genres and by different authors this month, and usually I do the same. However, this month I’m reading one single collection. For several different reasons I’m reading all seven of the Harry Potter books this month.

This challenge is a great way to introduce us to stories that perhaps we ordinarily wouldn’t read, and the review part is great for sharing our reading experiences with everyone.

I like your reviewing style. It’s straight to the point and provides an insight into the story, but gives none of the major plot points away.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

** Image ID #1882804 Unavailable **


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi whiskerfacebythefireplace ,

I chose to review your item “Write it right autobiography” today as part of my newly created static items review requirement for "a very Wodehouse challenge.

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* General impressions: This is such a personalised look into your life.

You talk about how you felt close to your father and what your awful cousin said to you, but I didn’t notice anything personal in there about your mother. I know most are of us are just naturally closer to one parent than the other, but I would have thought there would have been some mention of her in there somewhere (but maybe that is still to come).

You give a nice well-rounded view of your education and what your life was like at college. You talk about some of your friends and what you got up to with them, but you give us no resolution of your college life. Did you graduate? What qualification did you get? You may well be continuing this piece, and if so then that’s something you may already be thinking about including.

It’s great to read that you haven’t allowed yourself to be kept back from doing what you want to do by your condition. It was also good to see in your writing that you are able to engage in some light-hearted self-deprecation over your youth.

*BulletB* Favourite quotes: “After all, it was Shakespeare.”

I love this. Anything in school can be excused as long it is in the name of education. A few of my school teachers had very selective standards when it came to this.

“And Leslie, bless her, almost succeeded in teaching binary.”

*Shock* How dare she! You don’t want to be learning nonsense like that *Laugh*

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: While I didn’t notice any technical issues with your writing, there were a couple of niggly little typos.

I had weakness I my right hand and arm should be:
I had weakness in my right hand and arm

no one knew that until I was twenty-eight should be:
No one knew that until I was twenty-eight

*BulletB* Closing remarks: I’m glad you have such a supportive family around you, and that your husband supports you in your writing.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

** Image ID #1882804 Unavailable **


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi Mike W ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*

I chose to review your item “The Elvori and The Storymaker” today as part of the January Power Reviewers Review Raid which is about welcoming Newbies such as yourself to WDC.

*BulletB* Title: The title grabs the reader’s attention.

*BulletB* General impressions: The parallels with the Elves and the Shoemaker are clear and the story has that familiar feel to it. However, you have made your story your own, and it stands up very well to scrutiny.
The plot is developed and interesting. It captures the imagination with the magical way the stories are written. Jeff and Claire are both well-written and their interactions show the reader how close they are.
There is very little dialogue in your story, but what there is written well and advances the story along.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I didn’t notice any technical issues as I was reading.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: My only comment is that at one point you use the term “Story Master” and the next time you use “Storymaker”. I’d pick one and stick with it, especially in a short story.

*BulletB* Closing remarks: The ending fits in with the whole concept of the story, and although it leaves me wanting more, it is a nice ending for a short story.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Wishing you a very happy new year and best wishes for 2015 !

Andy~NaNo'ing

Click to go to WDC Power Reviewers


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with The Newbies Academy Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi Iris Archwood ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I chose to review your item “Purple Sky, Grey Eye (Chapter One)” today as part of the New Year Newbie's Academy Review Raid.

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* Title: The title is a clever one, and it attracts the reader.

*BulletB* General impressions: I enjoyed the chapter. John initially comes across as just a boring accountant who does his job and then goes home at the end of the day. As your story progresses, we come to realise that there is far more to him, and that he is astutely aware of the world around him. He even “knows” the people on his bus journey home, though he’s never as much as acknowledged any of them.

*BulletB* Favourite parts: John’s mental voice arguing in his mental court. This is something that many of do every day, without even thinking about it. What takes place within our mind occurs in a flash, yet you have managed to draw out the arguments and even pronounced sentence. This was a great inclusion in the story and provides us with an insight into your character.

*BulletB* Favourite quotes: It was a thought that would get sentenced to ten years at least.
This was a nice bit of initial self-deprecation by your character, that led us smoothly back to his mental courtroom.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I didn’t notice any technical issues as I was reading

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: These are included in the dropnote below. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes/explanations for the change are in orange.

Line by line suggestions

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This was a great opening chapter. You have firmly established your main character, and you have set up the introduction to the next chapter. There’s not really anything else that chapter one needs to do.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

Newbies Academy Reviewing Sig1


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Review of Sophia  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Hi Elle - on hiatus ,

*Fire* Congrats! *Santahat* You're receiving a gift from "The 'Power' Review Shop" ! The Lightning Package has been ordered for you from: Your Secret Santa. Enjoy!

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* General impressions:

You capture the horror of the witch hunts brilliantly. You have written Sophia as a very likeable character and she is easy to empathise with.

Through Sophia we experience the fear of the townspeople, as the hunt for the next witch ensues. Sophia and Maman's worst fears are realised in the most horrific fashion, yet Maman's first thoughts are for her daughter.

Sophia is left to fend for herself after her mother is decried as a witch. We don't get to see much of what Sophia's life is like without Maman, but we can take an educated guess as to what will be in store for Sophia.

*BulletB* Favourite quotes: Not so much a quote but I love how you have emphasised the locale of the story - Sophia always referring to her mother as 'Maman', and when her mother curses she says 'Dieu'. This is a nice touch of authenticity.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I didn't notice any technical issues and I have no suggestions for improvement.

*BulletB* Closing remarks: The European witch hunts paved the way for the more famous Salem trials. It made a nice change reading a story about the lesser known witch hunts that took place here in Europe.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


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Review of Hands-Free  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi Elle - on hiatus ,

*Fire* Congrats! *Santahat* You're receiving a gift from "Invalid Item! The Lightning Package has been ordered for you from: Your Secret Santa. This includes reviews of three fiction stories. Enjoy! *Fire*

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* General impressions: This was an emotional flash piece. David's parents attend all of his sports events but their technology constantly distracts them. They've always been there for him, but they've never seen him compete. David decides to give up trying, and that is the truly sad part of this story.

It is a shocking indictment of the times that technology now pervades every aspect of our lives. I can remember when I was a child that if I wanted to make a telephone call I had to take a load of coins with me and use a public phone box. Nowadays I see eight and nine year olds walking down the street texting on mobile phones (cell phones); I shudder to think where technology will be thirty years from now.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I didn't notice any technical issues.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: I only have one minor suggestion. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes/explanations for the change are in orange.


I stood up and walked out of the room without being excused, waiting every moment to be told off for it, but I heard nothing as I walked through the doorway and went on to my bedroom.
I stood up and walked out of the room without being excused, waiting every moment to be told off for it. I heard nothing as I walked through the doorway and went on to my bedroom.
This is a bit of a mouthful for one sentence. I'd suggest splitting into two sentences.


*BulletB* Closing remarks: This was a great anti-tech flash piece, and I liked the ending. You give a resolution to the conflict, and that's what we all look for in a flash piece.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


** Image ID #1729367 Unavailable **


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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hi MissTique ,

*Fire* Congrats! You're receiving a gift from "The 'Power' Review Shop"! The Nuclear Package has been ordered for you from: Your Secret Santa. Enjoy! *Fire*

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* Title: The title fires the imagination as to what your story will be about. Will it be a literal or a figurative interpretation on the expression.

*BulletB* General impressions: Your story starts off with a great hook that draws the reader in.

"If you’re reading this, I won’t be coming home." immediately makes us sympathetic towards Mia. Even if none us have ever been in the position of receiving a letter that starts out like that, we can all empathise with the crushing tidal wave of emotion that Mia gets hit with.

Your story has a strong emotional current flowing through it and it gives us a very clear impression of the kinds of people Mia and Miles are.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I didn't notice any issues while I was reading this.

*BulletB* Suggestions:

I did notice a point of view shift, and it does trip up the reader. The point of view (POV) is which character's perspective the story is being told from. You start out telling the story from Miles' point of view, but you are forced to switch to tell the ending from Mia's point of view. Since you have to tell the ending from Mia's POV, I would suggest that you change the opening to also be told from Mia's POV. You could accomplish this by having her read the initial letters out loud to herself.

The shifts between timeframes are a little jerky. I think this comes about because there is nothing to indicate a shift is coming up. One way to do this is to enter a short row of asterisks, or another would be to have two carriage returns between paragraphs where a timeframe shift occurs. If the reader sees a visual clue that a jump is coming up, I think it will ease the transitions and make your story flow a little smoother.

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This is a very emotional story, and the ending is the most emotional. It is also a very touching way to end the story.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


** Image ID #1729367 Unavailable **


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for entry "Chapter 1
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Hi EllisRosser ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I am reviewing your item The Gift of Revenge today as you requested.

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* Title: As I said with the initial excerpt that you posted, the title is eye-catching and that's what usually gets a story noticed first - at least until you become a familiar face.

*BulletB* General impressions: These are comments and suggestions solely regarding chapter 1.

Your chapter remains action-driven and this works really well as an opening. When a fantasy world is being introduced for the first time, there can be a tendancy to go overboard and bombard the reader with a lot of information on the world. Yes, we need to know things about your world (the physical layout, the kinds of beings who inhabit your world, the laws, important features such as mountain ranges or deserts) but it's important (at least in my opinion, I'm sure others will disagree with me on this) to only provide us with enough information for the current chapter to make sense. You have an entire novella or novel to introduce us to every nook and crany of the world your brain has concocted. We don't need to be told about everything in the first chapter.

You clearly establish the personae of Ailus and the wizard with your descriptions and phraseology. Ailus is surrounded by darker imagery where as the wizard is portrayed as frail. The way they speak also portrays the wizard's fear of Ailus.

You immediately set out the evil character and the extent that his evil runs to. However, I'd like to know some of the backstory to it. Why does Ailus feel the need for revenge? What happended to him or was done to him? I get that we need the bad guy in any good fantasy story, but it's engaging for the reader if they know what his motivations are. Readers love to hate and fear the antagonist in a story and hope that he/she fails in their plans, but we need to know why we should feel like this. Sometimes the antagonist may be doing the wrong thing, but for the right reasons.

*BulletB* Favourite quotes: My favourite quote remains "The King's expensive gown was left a stain of crimson betrayal". This depicts Ailus' actions in just a few words.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: There is nothing that actually detracts from reading your chapter or makes it difficult to follow. I do have a few suggestions which you are free to accept or ignore as you wish. These are included in the dropnote below. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes/explanations for the change are in orange.

Line by line suggestions

*BulletB* Other suggestions:

You use "druid" and "wizard" interchangeably here. To most of us they conjure up different images and different mythologies. I would suggest you pick one and stick to it.

There is a lot of white space in your chapter, which is very distracting. You should delete a few of those extra carriage returns - I'd suggest one carriage return between paragraphs, and two carriage returns when you indicate time jumps or jumps between scenes.


*BulletB* Closing remarks: You have a great opening chapter to your story, and you have received a lot of positive feedback from a variety of people. You have an intriguing storyline that I'm sure will draw a lot of readers.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing
** Image ID #1882804 Unavailable **


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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hi Danza ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I chose to review your item Grandpa's Christmas Card today as you requested.

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* General impressions: Overall, I think this is a nice tribute to your grandfather. We really get a sense of how much he meant to your family and to you. You also did a great job of providing details that help to feel like we get to know him a little.

I loved the feelings of love and joy that are expressed, especially those feelings that most families experience on Christmas Eve.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: There were no particular issues, but I do have a few suggestions. Please see below.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: These are included in the dropnote below. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes/explanations for the change are in orange.

Line by line suggestions

*BulletB* A few other suggestions:

1. It would be good to let readers know how old you were in the opening scene. I get the impression that you were speaking generally, but it would be useful to give us an age range.

2. Could you let us know what you were doing the garage? Assuming that you remember.

3. You should explain, that is assuming that you know, why your grandpa's tradition of opening presents on Christmas morning didn't pass to his children. It's very unusual for a major family tradition, especially one surrounding a holiday, to suddenly stop. Your parents open their presents on Christmas Eve - is this something passed down from your other set of grandparents?

4. You could mention what you grandpa's illness was.

5. I would move these lines to nearer the start. "He started working at a young age, and I don't think he really had a memorable Christmas. Times were tough back then."

6. "scary, creepy crow". Expand on this part. What makes the crow scary and creepy. Describe the scene for the reader.


7. "way out in the country, about fifteen minutes away from town". You may want to think about changing this to something like thirty minutes or forty-five minutes. Fifteen minutes doesn't really feel like "way out in the country".

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This was a very touching piece, but you must remember that it one that you need to keep personal to you. Don't allow yourself to get buried by opinions and comments from lots of different people.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

** Image ID #1882804 Unavailable **


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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
Rated: ASR | (3.5)
This is an interesting idea for a story. It reminds me of Gulliver on his travels.

I've never really looked at any of the interactives, but they look like fun. They're reminiscent of the choose your own adventure books I read as a child.

I'll be back when there are more chapters so I can see what direction people pull this in.
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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi QueenOwl ~ A New Day Dawns ,

Seasons Greeting. I chose to review your item today as part of the December Member-to-Member Review Raid.

*BulletB* Title: I'll be honest, the title didn't call to me, as there was nothing to really suggest what your story might be about. However, the description underneath it really did pull me in. I just had to find out the answer to that statement.

*BulletB* General impressions: Oh my god. I am laughing so hard right now.

This was being set up as such a sweet little story: the secret little love notes, the walks at night, the hand-holding. Then completely out of left field you hit us with the ickyness at prom.

*BulletB* Favourite parts: I loved the idea of her little sister playing chaperone and then squealing to their parents.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I didn't notice any technical issues and I have no suggestions for improving it.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

Wishing you and yours a very merry festive season!

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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Hi Maryann ,

Seasons Greetings, mon capitaine. I chose to review your item today as part of the December Member-to-Member Review Raid.

*BulletB* Title: I absolutely love the title. It sparks memories of my childhood spent reading Enid Blyton's The Famous Five or The Secret Seven. It promises the reader a mystery, and since this is a children's story, it will be a mystery from a child's perspective.

*BulletB* General impressions: A simple plot device - Mandy and Gina sell lemonade and fight crime *Laugh* Those eight words may sum up the plot, but they in no way do it justice.

It's a simple plot, but you have written a fun story around it. The story also holds enough intrigue to even keep an adult reader hooked until the end. Although I'm possibly not the best judge of that, because I'm still a big kid at heart; I love watching re-runs of the great cartoon shows from the 1980s and still read a lot of childrens books. Actually, I hope I never outgrow that.

The two girls come across as very wily and clued-in for second graders, but the way how the story is written allows for some necessary suspension of disbelief over that one aspect of these two eight year olds.

They also seem to have built up an excellent relationship with the adults, as evidenced by their easy banter with Mr Marino. An absolute must for them to detect the guilty.

*BulletB* Favourite parts:

There is the way the storyline follows the same natural path as a adult mystery. Identify suspects, question them, gather information, and eliminate the innocent. The fact this is done by two kids who should be tucked up in bed by nine, does not make the process any less valid. The fact you have maintained as much true-to-the-adult-world in your story is what further helps with suspension of disbelief.

I also love the idea of them selling rocks to people from their lemonade stand. It's somewhat reminiscent of the "pet rock" from the 1970s. Not that I'm actually old enough to remember this, nor do I come from the US; I've just watched a lot of US TV shows.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: Technically this was nearly perfect, though I did notice one niggle with speech marks.

“Let’s make sure that we ask lots of questions today.” “…And we can start with Carol and her mother,”
“Let’s make sure that we ask lots of questions today . . . and we can start with Carol and her mother,”
Since it is the same person speaking, you don't need the close speech marks and open speech marks where she pauses. You can leave the ellipsis points without the spaces if you like; I only put spaces in between each point since that is what Chicago Manual of Style suggests.

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This is an entertaining children's short story that has left me wanting to read more mysteries of the Lemonade Girls Detective Agency.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

Wishing you and yours a very merry festive season!

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Review of No Takers  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hi Cheri Annemos ,

Seasons Greeting. I chose to review your item today as part of the December Member-to-Member Review Raid.

*BulletB* General impressions: You have written an interesting story here. Madonna comes across as someone who just can't say no to her friend Trish, yet both characters are likeable. You have also captured Madonna's OCD well.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: For the most part there were no issues. The only real issue is one long sentence that ideally should be broken up; I have put a suggestion on how to do this in the next section.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: These are included in the dropnote below. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes/explanations for the change are in orange.

Line by line suggestions

*BulletB* Closing remarks: I don't know about naming the character Madonna. I know we all look for interesting and unusual names for our characters, but Madonna either conjures up images of the singer or the Virgin Mary. It stops the reader from forming their own impression as to what she looks like.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

Wishing you and yours a very merry festive season!

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Review of Whispering Walls  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | N/A (Review only item.)
Hi Ms. Nixie Saint Nick ,

Seasons Greeting. I chose to review your item today as part of the December Member-to-Member Review Raid.

*BulletB* Title: My spine was shivering at what your simple title promised. The expressions "if these walls had ears" and "if these walls could talk" spring to mind, but they have none of the fearful connotations of your title.

*BulletB* General impressions: Friday 13th has so many stories and superstitions attached to it that I was intrigued as to where you planned to go with this.

You have crafted a though-provoking and chilling take on the theme. It makes me wonder if there any real Trent Flints wondering around.

*BulletB* Favourite parts: The absolute chill I got from the scene in room thirteen. That scene was really well written, and I was so completely caught up in the narrative.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: There was only one minor niggle. You have no open speech marks for the line that begins: You fell into a drunken stupor and dropped your pipe

Otherwise, this story was faultless.

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This was an enjoyable horror flash piece, and I look forward to seeing what else is in your port.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

Wishing you and yours a very merry festive season!

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Review of "UNGH!"  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi Fangus ,

Seasons Greeting my friend. I chose to review your item today as part of the December Member-to-Member Review Raid.

*BulletB* General impressions: A family dinner causes old grudges to resurface between cousins.

Ben comes across as a petulant child, and seems unable to forgive his cousin over a car crash from back in their high school days. Mike seems to want to live and let live and comes across as a reasonable person. These traits make the ending all the more surprising and horrific.

*BulletB* Favourite quotes: This is one fine meal, Jill. Thank you for having us.

Mike says this so calmly and rationally. He just sits back and enjoys his dinner while the horror happens around him.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: There was only one small niggle, otherwise this was perfect.

Mike put his fork down and began rubbing the back of his neck with both hands.
Ben put his fork down and began rubbing the back of his neck with both hands.
I think this should be Ben based on what is said a couple of lines further on "Ben’s hands, which were still on his neck,"

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This was an enjoyable read, and is impressive that you have written such a horrific ending that managed to only warrant a 13+ rating.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

Wishing you and yours a very merry festive season!

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Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
Rated: 18+ | (3.0)
Hi CRiM ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I saw "PS Home Horror Stories 1: Cutteridge. on the Noticing Newbies page.

*BulletB* General impressions: You have crafted a good story here. The narrative is well constructed and it flows smoothly. The action moves along at just the right pace for a flash piece.

*BulletB* Favourite parts: You have provided a detailed backstory and have tied it in nicely with the scene that your story starts with.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: I found no technical issues with your grammar and spelling. However, you do have an issue with punctuating speech tags.

Speech tags

You also have several instances where one speaker’s words run for more than one paragraph. When this happens, you need to use quotation marks at the beginning of the speech, at the beginning of each subsequent paragraph, and at the end of the whole speech.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: These are included in the dropnote below. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes/explanations for the change are in orange.

Line by line suggestions

*BulletB* Closing remarks: This was an enjoyable story. You seem to like to write horror pieces, so I'd recommend you check out "Weekly SCREAMS!!! which is our daily horror flash contest.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

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Review of An Equal End  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi BrendonBraun ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I saw "An Equal End on the Noticing Newbies page.

*BulletB* General impressions: Your piece may be short, but it speaks volumes. It is very well crafted and I agree with everything you have said. What is disturbing for me here in the UK is that the number of hate crimes are actually on the rise.

*BulletB* Favourite quote: "We are all equal in the eyes of the Grimm Reaper." This hits the nail on the head. No matter who you are, what you are, what country you come from, what soccer team you support, or whatever other reason someone has for wanting to make someone else's life a misery, we are all mortal and we are all going to die. We should be enjoying what lifespan we have and learn to get along with our neighbour.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: There were no obvious technical issues.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: I have nothing to suggest to improve on this piece.

Thank you for sharing this great item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

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Review of Homework is Bliss  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi Sunny Mahesh ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I saw "Homework is Bliss on the Noticing Newbies page.

*BulletB* Title: With a title like that it had to be satirical. I hated the dreaded "H" word when I was in school.

*BulletB* General impressions: For such a short piece you have captured probably every schoolchild's sentiments since the beginning of time.

*BulletB* Favourite parts: There wasn't really one part that stood out more than any other. This was a lovely bit of satire that gave me a few chuckles.

*BulletB* Favourite quotes: "Teachers have homes? Psh, we all know they live at school." It was frightening for me the first time I saw one of my teachers with her family in my local supermarket.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: There was only one tiny niggle:

Quote: experience roller-coasters of anxiety
it should be: experiencing roller-coasters of anxiety

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

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Review of The Unmakers  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
Hi Iris Archwood ,

*BalloonR* Welcome to WDC from "Newbie Welcome Wagon! *BalloonR*


I saw "The Unmakers on the Noticing Newbies page.

*BulletB* General impressions: Aran is running, but we don't really know what he's running from. You provide hints at things, without coming out and saying anything.

Aran seems to have a mysterious benefactor, but can this person who communicates via pigeon truly be trusted? I guess only time will tell.

*BulletB* Favourite parts: I loved the opening paragraph. The descriptions are vivid and they paint a great picture of the countryside.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: There were no technical issues that I could see.

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: I have no suggestions to improve your chapter.

*BulletB* Closing remarks: The chapter ends in such a way as to set up the next chapter, and this is exactly the way a chapter should end. Far too often I read a chapter that has wrapped up the plot for the chapter, but it has not setup the next chapter.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing

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Review of The County Fair  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hi River ,

I chose to review your item today as part of my review challenge at the "Invalid Item.

Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.

*BulletB* Title: The title, whilst apt, doesn't reveal much about what we might be in store for with this piece. I actually like that.

*BulletB* General impressions: The county fair is a much-loved event anywhere in the world. The descriptions of the fair and the events surrounding it were well written. The relationship between mother and daughter was well explored for such a short piece, and I loved the banter between the two of them.

*BulletB* Favourite parts: The sights, sounds, and smells of the fair. The story could be set anywhere, but by including these senses you allow us to see the fair going on around your characters.

*BulletB* Grammar/Spelling/Punctuation: Your spelling, punctuation and grammar are good for the most part, however there is one recurring issue with each aspect.

Spelling: You have a mix of American English spellings (center, favorite) and UK English spellings (colourful, Mum). You should pick one convention and stick with it.

Grammar: You get your POV mixed up in a few places.

Punctuation: Your punctuation of speech tags.

Speech tags

*BulletB* Line by line suggestions: I have only included grammar and speech tag punctuation suggestions in the dropnote below - you will need to decide for yourself which spelling convention you want to use. Your original work is in black, specific suggestions are in indigo, and additional notes or explanations for the change are in orange.

Line by line suggestions

*BulletB* Closing remarks: I enjoyed reading this story. You have done really well on the actual writing front, and you clearly know how to craft a story. Get the speech tags and POV shifts sorted and you'll go far.

Thank you for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!


Andy~NaNo'ing
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Review of Blood  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
In affiliation with The Newbies Academy Group  
Rated: 13+ | (3.0)
Hi, udita , today I am reviewing "Blood as per your review request.


*Vine1**Flowery**Vine2* Welcome to WDC from me and the "The Newbie Research Center *Vine1**Flowery**Vine2*


Please remember that you are the best judge of what is right for your story. Whatever another person says (especially me) whether positive or negative, is just their opinion. You are the only one who can decide what is right for your story.


*BulletB* General Impressions You have an interesting idea here. I like the plot, and the way how you slowly reveal bits and pieces of the storyline.

It was unusual to see a piece done as a Q&A in this fashion. To be honest, I'm not keen on it. It leads to a stop/start/stop/start feeling and prevents a natural flow to what has the promise of being a really good piece of writing. I do think this would be a far stronger piece written in prose (like a normal story).


*BulletB* Favorite Parts The big reveal at the end concerning his mother. I never saw that coming.


*BulletB* Corrections and Closing Remarks Most of the issues I've seen are things that you would pick up yourself if you carefully re-read the piece. The ones I could see are as follows (your original text is in black, and my corrections are underneath it in colour).


*BulletB*She lay there, my best friend , covered in blood.
*BulletB* She lay there, my best friend, covered in blood. You have a space after "friend" and before the comma, that does not need to be there. You have extra spaces here and there - this is just one example.


*BulletB* I was crying and shouting..but nobody heard me.
*BulletB* I was crying and shouting . . . but nobody heard me. The three dots are called an ellipsis, or ellipsis points. You have used it correctly in your sentence, but you must always use three dots (not 2, not 4, always 3) and there should be a space between each point. You have similar problems with ellipses throughout - this is just one example.

*BulletB*She screamed too,and all of a sudden everybody came running. My friends whom I've known for the last four years in college. The Princi..everyone.
*BulletB*She screamed too, and all of a sudden everybody came running. My friends whom I've known for the last four years in college, the principle . . . everyone. You need to have a space between the first comma and the word "and". I would also suggest combing the last two sentences into one, as they do not form a complete thought on their own.

*BulletB*My died when I was six..did I mention that?
*BulletB* My dad died when I was six. Did I mention that? You have a missing word here. Based on the rest of the story, I presume that missing word is "dad" or some variation of (father, daddy etc.). There is also no need for the ellipsis, you can simply split this into two sentences.

*BulletB*Why on earth would I kill my best friend?.
*BulletB* Why on earth would I kill my best friend? You do not need a period after the question mark. If you end any sentence with a question mark, then the question mark is used instead of the period.

*BulletB*"Yes she is an accomplished psychologist."
*BulletB*"Yes, she is an accomplished psychologist." You need a comma after "yes"

*BulletB*"Why? thirty."
*BulletB*"Why, thirty." In this case you would need a comma after "Why" and not a question mark. In this sentence you are using "Why" as an ejaculation of surprise and not as an actual question.

You also need to be careful as you have a major contradiction in your story:
Q. She died after you went to jail. She killed herself. However, what you reveal in the end contradicts this.

As I said, most of these you would pick up yourself if you re-read prior to posting.

This was an enjoyable piece to read, and it holds a lot of promise.

Thanks for sharing this item! Please keep on writing!

You are being reviewed by a member of "The Newbies Academy Group"

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Andy~NaNo'ing

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Review of Maggie's Choice  
Review by Andy~NaNo'ing
Rated: E | (4.0)
Such a moving piece. You have crafted an amazing story around one tiny, yet defining, part of Maggie's life.

I have lost several relatives to cancer and I'm sure each of them went through Maggie's journey. Maggie knows what she will be facing by fighting to live, but to borrow from Dylan Thomas she will not go gentle into that good night.

I hope to see more from you.

*Vine1**Flowery**Vine2* Welcome to WDC from me and the "The Newbie Research Center *Vine1**Flowery**Vine2*



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