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23 Public Reviews Given
Public Reviews
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Review of Last Winter  
Review by Charley
Rated: E | (4.0)
I think your first line should be "I died last winter." It's a great first line that pulls a reader into the story, I know I wanted to know more after reading that line.

I think the story would have flowed better had you described winter throughout. Rather than having a dazzling summer sun, have a bright sun that fails to warm the coldness of winter as it reflects off the snow and icicles from the school.

Perhaps the drawing of the oak tree includes barren branches where a bird once rested on it's migration to warmer climates.

I think keeping with the winter theme helps keep the reader focused on that great opening line. I died last winter.

Just my thoughts as a novice writer and an even less experienced reviewer!
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Review of George Forsyth  
Review by Charley
Rated: E | (3.5)
Never meet your heroes!

Enjoyed reading this once I got through a few edits. Some words should have been capitalized and in some places, there are extra letters. (example below):

It was 1988 but Lloyd d wanted it to be 1948. - could be edited to reflect - It was 1988, but Lloyd wanted it to be 1948.

I hate grammar, but it is necessary.

Many readers tend to get lost when a lot of edits are required, this is also my weakness!
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Review by Charley
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Nice story.

It flowed nicely, however some edits may help.

Some of the dialog seems unreal and could be improved with some editing:

She doesn’t want to listen to me,” answers Warren. “And I’m tired of trying to do it.”

This could have been edited to a shorter form, which is less formal and more accurate for someone that may be angry:

"She doesn't listen," answers Warren. "I'm tired of it."

“Do you want the same thing to happen to Grace that happened to our eldest daughter Victoria?” Melissa asks.

This could also have been shorten to read: "Do you want Grace to follow what happened to her older sister?"

Truthfully, I am new and still learning but one thing I try to do with dialog is to read it aloud to see if it feels right.

Good job!

Charley


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Review of Darlene  
Review by Charley
Rated: E | (4.5)
I liked the way your story progressed - it was an easy read.

Why do I think Gus is a better "Hustler" than Darlene? I can see Gus getting information from the mime - he gets talking with the aid of ale and uses this information to pull one over on the gypsy.

This was well written, and anytime a story leaves me with something to think about - it's a good thing!

As far as misspelled words or gramma errors - I am not sure I know enough to discover them.

Thanks for sharing.
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Review of Family secret  
Review by Charley
Rated: E | (3.5)
The suspense of a family secret and how it affects the family once revealed is a great story.


I did get a bit confused as you first listed Michael as your brother but later said, Uncle Michael. I suspect he is the Uncle but after reading it again I am not sure. I know sometimes, when I write, I know things that are not included in the writing, and I need to ensure I give the reader enough information to feel they are part of the story. Readers, like me, once we get confused, tend to miss something.

I also think, like me, sometimes you may be getting too wordy. Example "The only missing one is my brother John." could have been a stronger sentence - "My brother John was the only one missing."

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Review by Charley
Rated: E | (5.0)
Nice.

Who knew there was a deeper story to the "Three Little Pigs?"

I am new to reviewing, so take my comments while considering that "I know not what I do."

This was well written, and I found myself at the end wanting more.

However, that can also be negative as, unlike the cliff note version of "Three Little Pigs," which had a moral to the story, this more extended version does not.

Perhaps in the next installment, we will learn if Flowerina tames Ralph's anger issues or becomes a victim of a toxic relationship. (I wonder how the missing brothers will be an issue at the wedding?)

At any rate, thanks for the inner workings of the Big Bad Wolf - Hmmm, where is Little Red Riding Hood?
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Review by Charley
Rated: E | (4.0)
Scotty1615

I am new to doing reviews, so take any suggestions here with a grain of salt.

You certainly hit the emotion button with this story.

As I read through this, I tended to get stuck a bit. I think you were too wordy at times, which may cause some readers (like me) to get distracted. Unsure if that makes sense. I think we should make every word count, and if there, Sometimes less is more.

Example:
I proceeded to leave the lights on and headed home to wash the dust and grime off off of my body.

In this case you have two "off" adding a burb in the reading. I would recommend making this sentance stronger:

I proceeded to leave the lights on and headed home to wash the dust and grime.

Good job.

Charley
8
8
Review of Are You the One?  
Review by Charley
Rated: E | (4.0)
I may not be the "one," but whoever is the "one" for you is very lucky!

This was well written but

Are you the one? I don't even know you. And you don't know me.

This could be more powerful with an edit:

Are you the one? We have not spoken; we don't know each other.

Hope you find, meet and connect with the "One"



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Review of I Do Know  
Review by Charley
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
I am more a short story type than a poet, so I cannot give you much feedback.

When you feel the least supported, sometimes we have support from those who may be overlooked.

Remember, what does not kill us; makes us stronger (well, that and therapy!)

Welcome to this writers/poets' den.

(I know)
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Review of Good Exercise  
Review by Charley
Rated: E | (4.5)
AmyJo

We will each write the Great American Novel if we work at it and live long enough.

Reggie Jackson struck out about 2,500 times but kept swinging.

I figure after 2,500 bad reviews I will learn and be good at this!
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Review by Charley
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Lilli

Loved the Babysitting one. 100 words, wow.

Did you know Hemmingway won a bar bet by writing a story in six words? He wrote:

Baby shoes for sale, never worn.

The best I could do is eight words.

Broken rub bottles, broken promises; I'll quit tomorrow.
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Review of The Shroud  
Review by Charley
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Father Savage McKiligan

First, I am new to giving reviews, so take my comments with a grain of salt.

I enjoyed this; you did an excellent job describing the scene and the individual's inner thoughts. In fact, at times, your descriptions were a bit too lengthy. Some long descriptions may lead your readers away from the action/conflict of the story. For example I edited one of your paragraphs to shorten it a bit:

Original

The home is two stories tall and rectangular; it's slender but quite long. The exterior is a dirty and faded white, the paint chipping away to reveal the clapboards rotting beneath. A roof of old tiles and smeared in black tar is cracked and badly weathered. There are no lights or even electrical lines running toward the structure. Is it abandoned? It certainly appears so. Considering the age and condition of the structure, it surprises you that you hadn't heard of it before.

Revised

The two-story slender rectangular home is quite long. The dirty, faded white exterior has paint chipping away, revealing rotted clapboards. Old roof tiles smeared in black tar are cracked and badly weathered. No electrical lines are running toward the dark structure. Is it abandoned? It certainly appears so. It surprises you that you hadn't heard of it before.

That may be more my personal preference.

I like the way you built on the suspense. Reading the torn page was very good.

The ending had me at first wishing to learn more. However maybe there is no more, its too late!

Great job

Charley
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Review by Charley
Rated: E | (4.5)
Wakeup and live.

First, I am new at giving reviews, so please consider this when reading my comments. I may not know how to review and critique.

I enjoyed this story; however, I did get a bit lost when the group started their session. He did outline who was in the group at a very high level.

"A woman with her adult daughter, a teenager, and three elderly locals..."

I found it challenging to get a vision of the group. I can see a woman and an adult daughter, but the teenager and three elderly locals could use more details. Was the teen a boy or a girl? Likewise, the three elderly locals had no gender. Elderly locals could be pets.

One way I would do this is to have the woman introduce herself and the others. I am Mrs. Johnson, and this is my oldest daughter Amy; this teen is my son Bob, and behind them are Uncle Carl, Uncle Dad, and Aunt Ellen.

A couple of minor suggestions:

I would spell out OMG (Oh my God) as it appears to be someone's thoughts. Unsure if anyone thinks OMG.

Later the question is asked if the husband was bold. I believe this should have been bald.
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Review by Charley
Rated: E | (5.0)
I wish only the best for you.

Remember God only gives us as much as we can handle and what does not kill you makes you stronger!
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Review by Charley
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Allan

I enjoyed this story (hopefully fiction).

A couple of items you may want to consider.

One, I also struggle with this, you tend to get a bit wordy. One tendency is the use of the word "really". Example:

One day he was in his office, which was so small it was really a broom closet more than anything...

Taking the word "really" out of this sentence may help. Although it could be edited "He was in his office that was the size of a broom closet..." The "one day" could also be removed?

The second item I noticed is that you had a number of paragraphs which both Barabara and the president spoke. I had to re-read one or two of them, it may help readers to start a new paragraph when the speaker has changed.

Overall, like I said I enjoyed reading this.
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Review by Charley
Rated: E | (3.0)
Ceclia

I am a novice reviewer so remember I could be wrong!

I have a tendency to use too many words. You may as well. Sometimes there can be an addition by subtraction? For example, I edited one of your paragraphs.

His mind and body retaliated to the nightmare. It’s been so long, that it’s getting ridiculous. A funny matter but Jenny the woman in the white coat he sees every Thursday begs to differ. His mind is probably suppurating. Only a matter of time before his mother ships him off to where the looney’s nest. Jenny would probably be the one to lead him as the facility’s security gates close.

Not sure what suppurating is - would an average reader know?

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Review by Charley
Rated: E | (3.0)
Anna Marie

I am going to be honest here even at risk of the start of a potential friendship. Keep in mind this is my very first attempt at doing a review - I can be wrong!

This was a difficult read, but with some edits it can be improved.

First it seems the narrator is doing more telling than showing. It is better to show. For example, rather than tell the reader about his stuttering, perhaps show it with a dialog. (I vision a short conversation with the attractive girl he gets his morning coffee from)

I have and I suspect you do as well have a tendency to use too many words. For example, I edited this paragraph:

The question now is, what will Stephan do about this problem he has with communication?" He could take some classes on this subject such as taking one on speech; this will help him to get up in front of people to speak. This will help him to get over stage fright. The more practice he gets, the easier it will be. The churning in his stomach should subside the more that he does it. He will learn to be more comfortable with his voice. Before he knows it, he will be a professional. One more thing to know about Stephan is that when he gets frightened or unsure of himself, he tends to stutter. He was very aware of his problem, which made him feel self-conscious; unsecured in his abilities. He could purchase a mirror and use it to practice his speaking; he could see what he looks like when he speaks and how he presents himself.



What will Stephan do about his communication problem?" He could take speech classes; that may help him get over stage fright. The more practice he gets, the easier it will be to prevent the churning in his stomach. He will learn to be more comfortable speaking like a professional. More comfort and less fear may also cure his tendency to stutter. He could practice in front of a mirror and see how he presents himself.

Notice the shorter version (I believe) still has the main points as your original paragraph, however the reader may work less to absorb the main points in the paragraph?

Just a couple of thoughts from a very novice reviewer.
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