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Review Requests: ON
1,032 Public Reviews Given
1,273 Total Reviews Given
Review Style
Disclaimer: I am not good at remembering to do requested reviews. Often I have busy things going on with work and my own novels, so sorry if I decline or don't remember to do a review in the short time given. Just a warning. When I review: Long. Depending on the type of story and reason for review I tend to get anywhere from 4,000 characters to on the rare occasion over 10,000. I will make overall comments, technical points and even offer sources when necessary but a lot is dependent on what I'm reviewing. I can even do a full edit but that's take a lot of niceness and time.
I'm good at...
Ummm let me ask someone and get back to you on this.
Favorite Genres
Fantasy. I read a lot of romance/erotica because of the contest I run. I'm fairly open and will read stories, poems, nonfiction, chapters, almost anything.
Least Favorite Genres
I know less about mystery, horror, some nonfiction topics, and westerns. I also don't care for vampires, sorry but just don't interest me.
Favorite Item Types
Short stories.
Least Favorite Item Types
Probably campfires and interactives. Maybe surveys and polls too though I can always managed to find enough to say.
I will not review...
Shrink or Growth items. I've seen references and yeah, not my type. Erotica is one thing, I can handle most with only few times leaving a story feeling scarred for life, but those two I have no interest in helping. So, unless you want me to say please stop, don't request I review that and if you do, better have it rated appropriately.
Public Reviews
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1
1
Review of Natural 20  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with Team Weekly Quickie & Contest ...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi there Jeff

Thank for entering the Weekly Quickie Contest weeks ago. I am a little late in sending the review but still very much appreciated the attempt to enter the round and your take on the prompt. It was fun and I hope you enjoyed writing for the contest as it simmers along in this 2023 restart.


First Impression: A good approach and well put together flash fiction story that shows the start of possible romance. The main character gets nervous, makes a bold move online and reaps the benefits of getting a date.


Prompt: This is key and easy to see in the story because of the use in technology, with the text speak and the online meeting point to see the non-dating site approach. You did well with taking the prompt but making it feel natural for the story. It's not forced and didn't feel like a part was added just to qualify for the prompt. You're a veteran for contests on here so it's easy to expect a well followed prompt from you.


Characters/Story: Even if the story is very short, we get to see a nice slice of life type of scene with believable characters. It has some aspects of the game where they meet online but doesn't go overly involved in details that might confuse a non-gaming reader. While we don't know what happens to the characters, if they have a good date or if romance develops, it's a good start.


Other Notes: Overall, the set up is well done between characters, setting and the plot. On the technical side, it's well written. While I tend to prefer not using different color font, in this case it is clear why you made the decision. The color choice is a little stereotypical with the pink and blue. I liked the use of them in But I'm a Cheerleader since it was making fun of the forced male/female concepts. However, for the story maybe a change in color choice could give more insight to the characters if using the color font. Maybe there are colors that relate to their characters in the game where they met, though I don't know enough about games and character to know if that is at thing. Anyways, just nit picking. Nice work with the story.


Thank you for entering the Weekly Quickie. Keep writing!


~~Image ID# 1850193's Content Rating Exceeds Item Content Rating~~


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
2
2
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with I Write  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Greetings, Weirdone-Back in the games . I am reviewing your poem today as part of the write challenge for "Twenty-three in Eleven [13+]. I hope you are enjoying the challenges and entering the contests here on the site.


Initial Reaction: Nice approach. I don't often think of linking horror with poetry, but you found a good way to make that attempt here. The contest made it obvious why you went the route and having to follow a form adds to the challenge. It seems like this would have been a fun one to write. The character brought into the poem suffering through a change into a monster really stands out and slashes or grabs attention as they are going through a terrible time. The emotions and struggles show through and get reiterated with the repeated lines.


Contest/Prompt: The contest required the twist of horror, so it is obvious how that influenced the choice. One think you could consider adding at the end is maybe a link to the contest or put the prompt if there was one, so that a random reader (after reading the poem) could know the inspiration or influence. You could even use a drop note so that it doesn't distract from the poem and is there for those who want to know more.


Form: I am glad you gave information about the form in the item. It's definitely good that you also mentioned what you changed so that someone wouldn't go in expecting it to follow the rules exact that are laid out in the poetic forms information. One thing to maybe consider would be to put the information about the form and change to the end of the poem instead of the beginning. This is personal preference, but I tend to prefer getting the story/poem first and finding out the extra details later after getting a chance to enjoy/experience the writing on its own. The information, especially with the change up on the syllable count, is important but could be put at the end as someone who doesn't know anything about the form won't be judging or reacting based on that aspect, they first can just appreciate the writing you have here.

Final Thoughts: Overall, nice work in the syllabic and rhyming horror poem. Good luck with the contest and the challenge to write/review every single month.

*Peng*Keep Writing*Peng*


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.



*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
3
3
Review of Dating Apps  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with Team Weekly Quickie & Contest ...  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Hi there πŸ’™ Carly .

This review is in connection with the Weekly Quickie contest, which you entered back in January. My apologies for taking so long to get the reviews going. February I joined too many challenges but am getting caught up now. I appreciated the entry and your attempt at my digital based dating prompt.


First Impression: A well executed segment of a story that focuses on a main character who is trying to branch out into the dating world after many years not being on the market. It is well written with a strong focal point.


Prompt: Overall, this followed the prompt well. It is a good example of making the prompt be the focus of a story in a way that makes sense without it coming off sounding forced. The character is what really helps as she struggles with the technology and faces her own romance conflicts. While it doesn't show a successful date or romance scene, it made a good use of the app based dating site prompt that was provided.


Characters/Story: What really stands out here and helps to make the flash fiction story is the main character. I like that she is strong even when she is struggling. Despite having gone through some rough times and having to face someone close who betrayed her, she moves forward.


Other Notes: Nice work overall. The only minor down side for me is the fact that we don't get to see more of romance for the main character or some success beyond a response back on the app. It is well written but doesn't have enough to feel like it's a romance or erotica story. It's a scene that could be in part of a much longer story. That is okay but it would have been hard to compare if other entries had been more in the expected genre. Just a side note. I still enjoyed the story and appreciate you took the time to attempt my prompt.


Thank you for entering the Weekly Quickie Contest


an image made for the contests I host and take part in that are adult orientated


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
4
4
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with I Write  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello Sum1

My name is Dawn and I'll be reviewing your item in connection with "Twenty-three in Eleven [13+]. These are just my thoughts and forgive me if I ramble. Thank you for sharing your writing.


Initial Reaction: This is an interesting one based off the quotation prompt from the site official contest. I wanted to write for that one too but with the other story for Twenty-Three in Eleven and doing a novel writing challenge, I just didn't quite get that far. It was a good prompt so I can see why you picked it and came up with this piece. And the title and question draw some attention. Initially, with the question in the description about the characters and the title it reminded me of something one might read in a literature class that uses anthologies of short fiction. That is what came to my mind at first.


Contest/Prompt: For the contest, you used the quotation directly, putting the words into the story for the one character to explain something to another. And it makes sense in this case. Sometimes, adding the quote directly can feel forced but for the story, the concept works considering the open eyes but not really being able to know if he was seeing anything (if it was that character who was in the coma). The official contests can be tough with the competition and different judges but at least you know this fits in the prompt so won't have any issues there.


Technical Notes: The only issue I really had in reading it is that for some reason, when the lines are longer or it's a full paragraph, the parts of words got cut off on the right side. So, I was missing some small sections of the sentences and that made it difficult to follow since I'd see part of a word or even miss a small word. I know there is a way to fix that but I can't never remember it when I need to know. I even tried different browsers but couldn't get the full thing to show on the page. Do you use a processor and copy into WDC?


Overall Impression: Overall, you did a good job incorporating the quotation prompt from a contest into a story that gives the reader something to think about in their interpretation or understanding of the moments in a story. Nice work and good luck with the contest.



Sig I bought to put on my reviews.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
5
5
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with I Write  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Greetings, ruwth . I am reviewing your poem today in connection with "Twenty-three in Eleven [13+]. Thank you for taking the time to create a poem and entering it in a contest here on the site.

Overall Reaction: While a personal poem can be a challenge for some, and it might be for certain judges in a contest, it also is a core element of poetry. I can appreciate different elements that come from the words in the poem. In particular, what stand out to me is how aspects of the short lines create a flow that bring the reader along as they read the short item. The light repetition of particular elements are what create not only the rhythm but what will connect the readers to the words and what helps give it the strength of worship. I can imagine that this poem sounds strong in the mind for someone who could be helped by hearing the message to get through tribulations and find the time to rest too.


Prompt: A freestyle poem prompt is nice because it allows freedom to focus on any style and word flow within the poem that the writer wants to take. It works in your favor here to create something that is focused on worship and inner dialogue to create a prayer one could repeat to themselves in the times when they need the words.


Favorite Part:
Let me be mindful of that today.
Let me be mindful of YOU today.



*Peng*Keep Writing*Peng*



Sig I bought to put on my reviews.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
6
6
Review of Dear Me for 2023  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with I Write  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello πŸ’™ Carly .

My name is Dawn and I'm reviewing your item as a judge for "Twenty-three in Eleven [13+]. These are just some general thoughts from me with some reflection on the contest entered along with the entry you have created. I hope you enjoyed writing for the chosen contest and are having fun with the Write Challenge.


First Impression: It can be hard at times to judge such an entry because it is personal. That also makes it very hard for people to judge the contest because almost all entries that are easy enough to read are good entries. It will be difficult for the judges that have to read our entries for the contest. I like the approach you took with giving a past look before getting to the focus of the letter, which is to make plans for the year. The little emoticons used in the list are playful and help break things up wit the added color. Nice work considering how things went in 2022 before bringing up the big goals for 2023. Also, I liked the use of the motto to combine with your goals of Growth and Focus.


Prompt: This contest is one I have very little experience. I've never judged it even after all of these years as a moderator. This is also the first year I've done my own entry for the contest. Writing about myself was always awkward in school but I can understand how other people may enjoy it and even find the topic therapeutic. It is good to see people taking the challenge on that comes each January with the letter to self prompt that comes with the Dear Me contest. You did what was asked with the letter start as Dear Me and the topic involving plans for the year.


Otherl Comments: I do have to admit that the beginning of the letter does give of a spacey vibe, which is what you point out. in the first paragraph. It does come off a little distracted with the discussion that occurs since you mention the tasks that had priority in January and in the second paragraph update what you are doing in the moment. It's not easy to see the tie so it comes off almost too informal and the distraction may be seen as a deference from a reader's perspective, at least one who is someone else even though the intended person for the letter is the self. Nothing wrong with the approach but it may not be as appreciated with some readers.

It may also need a quick edit. Here is a sentence to consider for example: "My writing goal of completing my writing projects this year - aiming for publication can further be broken down to these aspects:" - The way it reads has an awkward sound with the repetition of "my writing" but that could just be me.

Technical aspects aside, you do have some really good goals. I wish you the best of luck with the contest and your goals for the year. There is a lot to do but at least we have the rest of the year to work towards things. And it doesn't have to be finishing everything, but as you said, focus on what you want to prioritize and grow.

Good luck!


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
7
7
for entry "The Magic Of Winter
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with I Write  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello πŸ’™ Carly

My name is Dawn and I'll be reviewing your item in connection with "Twenty-three in Eleven [13+]. These are just my thoughts and forgive me if I ramble. Thank you for sharing your writing.


Prompt/Contest:
This poem is written for a fun fantasy based contest Magic Poetry Contest. While I've never entered the poem one, I am fond of the prompts in the similar contest by the same Wdc member called Magic Words Contest. Here you've chosen to follow the music prompt, which is a challenge in itself. Music prompts can be hard to compete with because how people feel, react and interpret songs, in particular instrumentals, can vary. Having listened to the song after reading the poem, I can say that you did well with using the images and such from the video along with some of the experience one gets listening to the instrumental elements when you created the poem. It is a nice representation of the song in poetic form.


General Comments:
Overall, you have done well in this poem. It works in consideration for the prompt and the contest entered. It also has some elements that are very relatable for anyone who has gone for a walk late at night alone in the snow. I used to do that when I was young. Have music on, often instrumental music like anthems or big band type, or just go without the old CD players and walk down the long dirt road listening to my feet on the snow. There is an experience there that is so personal yet can be shared among anyone over the years.

I will admit that there is a little less of a poetic feel to the piece in general for me. Not that it's a bad thing. The sounds with the lines and how they feel just have less of a poetic beat in my head. The appearance is the usual of the poem but something is a little off for me. And I would almost go with less capital letters as it causes me to falter as I read the lines to understand which ones are part of a sentence and which something new. Then again, I either go full punctuation in my poems or none at all (some readers really don't like that). So, it's a very personal choice in how you do the first letters of each line and what you use to guide the reader for breathing and flow.

And for the first time, I would suggest that you consider putting the prompt link with the music at the start of the item instead of the bottom. Usually, I say any extra details (form, prompt, contest) don't need known as they might influence the reader in what to expect. With the particular influence of the song, it may help some to hear it first but it's not something that is necessary. Works fine at the end too as they can learn to appreciate it on a different level if they decide to follow the link.


Favorite Part:
Snow dances around me like a whirling dervish.
I can see only a short distance ahead.
It silences the world around me --
One that usually rings with constant chaos;
Now silence reigns supreme.




Final Thoughts:
It is a nice poem that has a clear connection to its purpose but also one that random readers can appreciate. Good luck with the contest and the many months of this writing/review challenge.



Sig I bought to put on my reviews.



*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
8
8
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with Team Weekly Quickie & Contest ...  
Rated: ASR | (3.0)
Hi there Angelica- Busy Writing . I am reviewing your story as part of the Weekly Quickie Contest. I appreciated your taking the time to come up with an entry for the round.

First Impression: It's a good starting point for a story that could go well with a little more work and words to flesh things out for the potential readers.


Prompt: This week had two options for prompts to consider that both involved a character needing to learn a lesson. Could pick from either Last Holiday or a Christmas Carol. The carol with the need to change after being visited by a ghost or something similar was the more popular choice though the take a risk for romance is more Last Holiday. This story does work in relation to the prompts with room to develop even more.

Characters/Story: The story and characters are both elements that have potential but need further development. Even though Quickie is about keeping things short, having some levels of development and information for the reader will really help to make the story come together in a more complete fashion. We get a little insight into the main character and her struggles for love. Now show even more.


Other Notes: There are a few areas in the story that would benefit from further development in order to make it stronger and more complete for readers to enjoy.

The beginning - While it's common to start in the midst of action to get a readers attention, in this one it doesn't quite work because it puts the reader into the scene with no connection to character or story yet. Starting with dialogue can be tricky and since we don't get much detail in the beginning paragraphs about the set up, it's a little too reliant on the reader knowing and understanding what is going on. Without prompt or suggestion, a random reader may start off confused being put in so quick into things.

Reason for the flowers - While flowers are often used for females, there has to be a little something more in order to understand why Jose would want to be given flowers. Because we don't get any details about the characters, we don't get to see why those are the options and why the main character thought the petal was right to "nimble on". Since you weren't at the word count limit, giving some more details about the characters could help.

The end - this is also rushed. I know you were trying to put something together in time for the contest round while also doing other things so I understand that things can get rushed. However, a random reader is going to feel the end comes too quick and needs more development as a story. Not only does it just end quick with the Christmas lines, but she even just by saying hi talks about marriage someday. It's all kinds of fast at the end. Nothing wrong with that but the reader needs to know more for it to work that way.

While the story does need a bit of work and rewriting, it was still a good attempt with making a quickie romance scene from a movie based prompt. Keep on working the skills with writing and you'll get there in the future.

Thank you for entering the Weekly Quickie. Good Luck!


~~Image ID# 1850193's Content Rating Exceeds Item Content Rating~~


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
9
9
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with Team Weekly Quickie & Contest ...  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Hello {super:bobturn}. Here is the reviews as part of entering the Weekly Quickie contest during the December rounds. This one didn't have any competition but will also be considered for the overall month with the theme in consideration.


First Impression: Overall, a good approach to story providing a little romance in flash fiction around a difficult emotional time: the holidays.


Prompt: For this week, the prompt was centered around the movie The Holiday, which follows a couple of women who go on vacation (trade homes) in order to get away from romance troubles but end up finding love. While I'm not big on romantic comedy movies it was interesting with Jack Black playing one of the love interest characters, still goofy but not as overtop as some of his other roles. While there may be a question or two on interpretation of the prompt, I do actually see elements with the struggle for romance being around the holiday. A character gets a little suicidal in the beginning of the movie actually too. And it looks like you added some from a November prompt adding the Ace element, which I really appreciated.


Characters/Story: I do like a number of the elements in relation to both the characters and the plot. It was an interesting choice with the suicide hotline type of job/location. Most of the story is in the dialogue that way. Was nice to have a non-physical approach to how the characters meet along with the combination of the asexual elements.

One issue that did come up for me is that the characters are a little difficult to distinguish. At times, I wasn't sure which one was the point of view character even though it seemed like we should have been in the call center person's point of view for this one. This also lead to a little uncertainty on gender for the characters. Like with the discussion of relationships with women more than men and question of being gay, that made me think the caller was female. Then the name Marty comes in later and that tends to be more male. I know men and women who are ace, so anyone can identify with the orientation. So it was just a question mark that came up while I was trying to understand each character during the story.


Other Notes: Nice work with creating this story within the word count limit for the contest. The only thing I would say that didn't quite work out for me is the end because the last paragraph feels sort of tacked on. Like, I can see how you wanted to give the reader a feeling of a story ending, to know that the characters get together but it becomes rushed and may not have been needed. Instead of giving it a final experience, it makes the story seem a little incomplete. Still, you did a nice job with this one and I appreciated the effort.



Thank you for entering the Weekly Quickie. Good Luck!


an image made for the contests I host and take part in that are adult orientated



*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
10
10
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with Team Weekly Quickie & Contest ...  
Rated: 13+ | (3.5)
Hi there Angelica- Busy Writing

First of all, thank you for making the effort to enter the contest. I know it can be a challenge and might not be your usual type of contest to enter. I appreciated the attempt you made for this.


First Impression: It's a cute approach and start of a story. There isn't much to it because of the length and the focus for the brief amount shown is the start of them getting to communicate along with the reference of a date. It is a nice, pg approach to the start of something with lots of room to grow.

Prompt: The prompt for the week you entered was to focus on a non-verbal approach to romance/erotica and in this regard the story does fit well.Having the one character not be able to talk. While it does hit the boarder line a little against the prompt because she does talk to him for the first 2/3rd of the very short story even she does get to the sign language at the end. This can be a fun dynamic to work with between characters for a romance story if you ever want to explore it further.

Characters/Story: We get a slight insight into the two characters but could use more. It's just a taste to their story and could have used at least a few hundred words, if not more. But I like the idea behind the story and the different turns the two could take in their romance. The him almost asking but her really being the one to ask about things is fun.

Other Notes: One thing that seemed a little off for me was that she said she didn't read sign language but the very next paragraph they are communicating in sign language. Maybe that could be adjusted to say she doesn't read it well or is learning is slower still. Something to imply she isn't an expert but does know some because it's clear she can read a little sign language since they use it to communicate at the end of the story.

If you ever are interested in reading my approach to a similar duo, remind me some time on messenger or in IM as I've done a couple where one can't speak or hear and the other guy is a music major. I have some pg parts of their story written including the one trying to learn sign language. It can make for an interesting dynamic between characters, which is what draws me to the idea.


Thank you for entering the Weekly Quickie. Good Luck!




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
11
11
Review of The voice  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with I Write  
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
Hello Whiskerfacebythefireplace

My name is Dawn and I'll be reviewing your item in connection with "I Write: Enter the Second Decade [E]. These are just my thoughts and forgive me if I ramble. Thank you for sharing your writing. Hope you have enjoyed the challenge with the writing and reviewing to reach goals of a certain number of entries in the allotted time frame.


Initial Reaction: I'm guessing this is a blog type of entry based on the biographical aspect and writing style for the paragraphs. It sounded like an interesting situation with the beta reader role coming about. I've honestly, never seen the dragon movies but I've really wanted to with the originals. Can't imagine what all people who are creating with the fan fiction. But it sounds like you find some good things and enjoy the stories.


Other Notes: While this isn't a contest entry that I know and the technical side may not be a high priority, the last few paragraphs did stand out to me a little. The first couple of paragraphs had the layout with the space after each paragraph. The two near the end are lacking the space. It's a nit picky element but is something that caught my attention as I was reading it for the review part of the challenge.

While it sounds like you weren't expecting the beta reader role, it looks like you've got it. I know how you feel too as it can be hard to be on the same page when it comes to the role/expectations between writer and reader. I've done critique groups and some don't worry about major changes, sometimes a reader gets made when you don't follow their exact device, then others follow every change from every reader. But also sounds like it could be fun. Though I'm beta reading 160k novel and it's a challenge.

Good luck with the role and hopefully you'll enjoy the story as you read more.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
12
12
Review of Never Mind  
Review by Dawn Embers
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Greetings Words Whirling 'Round . I am reviewing your story today that I found doing a genre search for travel related items. It caught my attention with title and story so decided to send you a quick review.


Title: I like the title. It does grab attention because it makes the potential reader curious what reason the story is called "never mind". What is the possible reference? It is something they will wonder and makes it likely for them to click on the item from whatever search or source on the site they use. The description will help too while keeping it very short and to the point, which the micro fiction word count also does.

Initial Reaction: This was entertaining and a fun little story with a strong punchline to match the title (since it's the exact same and for good reason). It reminded me of an episode from an oldish sitcom called King of Queens. In the set of episodes the couple go on a little weekend vacation. It was during the time the male character had lost some weight and was getting more attention for it. He tried to surprise his wife with a wonderful vacation in a cabin like before. Same exact cabin, romantic room service and even same guy working at the location. However, not the same girl. He forgot who he had brought to the cabin. Oops.

A little different since the ones in your story are talking about a memory and not on a recreation of the trip but it was what came to mind when I read the micro story you created.

Story: It is short but a good story. You manage to do a lot in the very short amount of words, which is quite a challenge. The one big paragraph gives the right detail while they last few are shorter but bring everything to the main point of the last line. it is well done overall.

Other Notes and Final Thoughts: I liked the story enough from my random read to send a review and my comments so that is a good start. The only thing I would suggest to consider might be changing the end of the sentence connected to her dialogue. It's not wrong to use the adverb in that way and it makes sense to put the description for her tone. Something about the word comes off a little less powerful. The way the "I" and the "l" look in the word. I can't quite pinpoint it to an exact degree but there may be a stronger way to format that sentence with the same concept kept in tact. Just something to consider. Other than that you did well. I hope you won the round of that contest.



Sig I bought to put on my reviews./center}


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
13
13
Review of Contest Entries  
Review by Dawn Embers
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi there Angelica- Busy Writing

I'm reviewing your item in connection with "I Write: Enter the Second Decade [E] again since right now it's mostly us two posting after each other, lol. These are just my thoughts and forgive me if I ramble. Good luck with the last couple of items to reach your goal for the challenge.


Title: The title is nice because it is a direct connection to the prompt used for the contest. This can be both good and bad. Good in that it is easy to connect for the judge, it is straight forward and lets the reader know what to expect. The "bad"-ish part is that it's almost too focused on the prompt and comes off a little less creative. I like the knowing what is going to be in the poem. However, I would almost want something else, maybe a little bit taken from the poem to stand out a little more and let the contest part be noted in the bottom section where you have line count and all of that detail.

General Comments: I like the poem. It is fun, friendly and presents a good message while paying homage to the group it is directed towards. The family members for those in the military are affected by what happens to those serving on many different levels. It is a topic many people can relate and find a touch of joy from with your approach.


Imagery: One thing this poem does that wouldn't come to mind much at first from the title is how it creates images with the focus on the family and some of the word choices. It does well to bring things to the readers mind so they can imagine what the short lines suggest with different families being together or going out to a lake to have fun.


Other Notes: Just a couple of things stand out to me after reading the poem over a couple of times that you could maybe look into come here in this section. So, I'm not the biggest fan when it comes to repetition (part of why I don't do a lot of it in my own poems if I can avoid such), but the stanzas ending with the line about family was a nice point and it almost seemed like it should have continued. Not that it needs to, but there is that change part way that can draw someone's attention to that fact. Yet, I like the last two stanzas without the word family in the last line. From my perspective, I wonder how it would sound if you switched the last stanza with the one before it. Go for family to the talk of colors brightening the home and end it with the comments about the month and to spend it well. Just an idea, nothing wrong with the current layout either.


Good luck with the contest and all of the writing you get done this week.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.


14
14
Review of Contest Entries  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with I Write  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi there Angelica- Busy Writing

I get to review your item in connection with "I Write: Enter the Second Decade [E] and the challenge of writing so many times along with reviews. You have done so well in keeping up and writing here on the site. Happy to get the chance to review your poem. These are just my thoughts and forgive me if I ramble and sorry for any typos as I cut a finger on my right hand making lunch today, oops. Thank you for sharing your writing.


Title: The title is to the point and related to the contest entered. Since I have entered one poem in the same contest under a different topic of awareness, I was familiar with where this was entered and the inspiration before making it to the notes at the end that explain for readers who aren't aware of the initial source.


Overall Notes and Comments: While the poem doesn't have the focus of a particular form or rhythm compared to other styles of poetry, it has a particular focus that remains at the forefront of importance. It has a flow itself and is something different readers should give a chance to help with the reminder of this aspect in some people's lives. It isn't an easy topic to put into words and might make some uncomfortable but that is okay.

The single lines were the strong points that give the poem an increased impact beyond just the focus of the words related to the topic. It isn't an easy one to discuss, with the harsh reality that comes with the existence of domestic violence. Some aspects are hard to discuss or difficult for some but very much a real aspect people face. The short lines and the specific words give the impact desired for the poem.


Nice work with the writing of the poem. Good luck with the contest.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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for entry "October Writing
Review by Dawn Embers
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello there. I'm sending you this comment for the October Writing entry in connection with "I Write: Enter the Second Decade"   by Annette as the person who posted an entry after you. It was interesting to read the journal entry so I just have some general comments since it's not something to offer in the way of edits or those types of suggestions.

I'm not even quite sure what Chessboard writing roulette is but that sounds very interesting. I've had my blog for so many years on this site but rarely make a post. So, I can relate to your comment about how it might be a common item for the roulette but the time passes fast when it comes to keeping a journal and how the days go so fast. It's a challenge to keep up any writing, even about the self with other obligations like work. Having writing activity events and I Write does really help but it's also easy to get behind too.

Regroup is a great option. I've had a monthly challenge group where members would post monthly goals to help focus for the short time on what they wanted to accomplish. I still try to do it from time to time, some months more successful than others. It looks like a good set of regrouping for you. I hope you are able to get everything you want done or at least worked on to your satisfaction.

I haven't had a chance to watch Wheel of Time but do hope to some day. I also want to finish reading the series too.

Halloween theme is fun and it's almost the holiday. Feels a little strange to have it be on a Monday, but oh well. Having a goal to write something themed with Halloween sounds like fun and so many different possibilities. You could go horror or scary if that's what you prefer or you could do something else. Many options.

Good luck to you and it was fun getting a little insight into your life and goals with the journal post. *Smile*
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Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: The story has a good approach with the very beginning able to grab the reader's attention with the voice and character presented. It has a voice and uses the character influenced by the contest prompt well to provide a story about a stage magician who comes upon something different than his usual. It also took a different approach with the inclusion of a time travel character element. However, it also feels the story was limited by the contest word count and needs more development in order to feel more complete.


Prompt: For the contest, it had a set of particular prompts that had both character and conflict focuses. The main one involved the character since it was for a character contest. However, this time around included a story element that was also required. This time it was one that was relevant to the character, so made things easy enough for writers and readers. As a judge and general reader, this was easy enough to find within the story and it qualified the story for the contest. Overall, the approach with the stage magician and the interesting other character that comes into his world.


Other Notes: Nice work with the story and entering the contest. Just have a few things to offer for you to consider if you decide to rewrite or edit the story. You could consider giving the story a skim over with some checking on technical points and minor things that have the potential to cause a reader to stumble. The spacing of sentences in particular might be a place to take note. Near the beginning, for example, there is a small paragraph with dialogue where part of the sentences has been moved down to the next line when it needs to stay up with the rest of the sentence. Just check for those minor details as it happens more than once.

Another minor thing you could consider would be to put the word count at the very end of the story since it is only relevant when it comes to the contest since it had the 2k word limit. The focus tends to be on the story, so having that first and extra details like contests, prompts, side notes and such kept to the end is often preferred.

While I enjoyed the story, it was a little difficult to follow. The part near the end almost goes by too fast because it's just quick dialogue with a lot of very short sentences so that the reader ends of going quick through that part. It felt like there was some developing that could be done to make it stronger. Felt like there needs to be more involved in that section. Now that there isn't a word count limit you could push things further and longer for the story.

Thank you for taking the time to enter the contest for August with the character focused prompts. I hope you enjoyed the challenge and the story you were able to create.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: This has a good approach with being able to draw the reader in from the very first, short paragraph. The story in particular does well with the showcasing of the voice and the main character point of view. Even the dialogue between the characters worked well with the voice and entertaining factor, helping to draw the reader into the story. Once he gets shaken and the rest of the story moves forward, it was fun with the addition of the other part of the prompt from the contest. Should be enjoyed by many different readers.


Prompt: From the start of the first couple of sentences, there is the connection of the character to the prompt from the contest. Since it is a character based contest that element is important but was also one this time around easy for different people to interpret. For this one we get the stage magician and the relation to the classic "trick" with the sawing in half and the discussion over how things work. Towards the end, we get to the real magic element, which was the other half of the set of prompt requirements, making it work the this round.


Other Notes: Overall, the story is well done and enjoyable to read. Not much stood out or caused a distraction during the different times I read over the story. You could maybe consider a minor edit to consider a couple of points but either way it's a good story. If you do want to consider an edit, consider trimming out a few of the -ly ending words. Not incorrect but there are a fair number within the small word count required for the contest. A couple could be trimmed out and that will make the sentence stronger. You could also look at a few parts where you just have a couple words then have a comma. Again, it's not incorrect but it's something I do too where I rely on the same thing often so it becomes overdone and having variety in sentence structures and lengths just help with the flow. Just something to think about.

Nice work with the contest entry. Thank you for taking the time to create this story for the August official site contest. Keep writing.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of The Coin  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: This one took a unique approach to a prompt through the use of a different world setup while keeping to the necessary character and plot point provided from a contest. This story does well in bringing the reader to this strange world/future with a strong threat and conflict creating drama in the story along with importance of the actions with the main, point of view character. I did have a little bit of difficult following the story in a couple of parts but other readers may have no issues at all. Different readers will enjoy the read when they come upon the story in whatever way draws them to this piece of writing.


Prompt: The prompt did have two specific requirements with the focus being the character, since it is a character contest, but also the conflict/plot point also required. While that can be tricky, this time the two were easy to put together into a story. Even with the different approach taken in this story, it still should be easy enough for others to see who are aware of the prompt requirement. It works in regards to the contest and provided a different approach/point of view. The coin trick was a nice choice because it makes sense with the prompt yet it wasn't chosen by many others who entered the contest.


Other Notes: Overall, you have done well with the writing for this entry. On the technical side, there are minimal distractions or things that can be done to improve things for the reader. One thing I would suggest, for editing, would be to look through the story for words that are on the weaker side and consider rewriting or removing some that aren't needed. Some of the adverbs, for example, could be removed to make the story stronger. Another option would be to remove a couple of the add ons such as "at least" "seemingly" or "few" as a way to strengthen sentences. Not that it is incorrect to use them, but they represent points that could be made stronger with some reworking. They are elements I look for in my own story edits that are best kept minimal to bring out the action better in the story. This one could also be developed more with added description to paint an even bigger picture for the reader, if you decide to continue with the story now the contest with the word count limit is over.

Good job with the contest entry. Thank you for taking the time to create this story in relation to the character based prompt from the site's official August contest. I hope you enjoyed the challenge.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: A different approach with the use of present tense in the story. Not my favorite as a reader but something that can work at least in short fiction. Some may not like that aspect but there are also going to be other readers who enjoy the use to bring the action into the moment instead of the typical usage of past tense. It was interesting to use the approach of the stage "fake" magician as the secondary character instead of the point of view one but still works well to fit with the required prompt. However, with having to fit into the word count requirements necessary for the contest, it does feel like the story jumps around and the amount of dialogue made it a little difficult to follow (for me at least).


Prompt: This time around the contest did come with a couple different requirements that needed met but they were easy enough to find within the entry. There is the stage magician character that is being interviewed, so that works for the character part of the prompt. Then there is real magic from the main character, so the necessary points are met and easy enough for different readers to interpret.


Other Notes: You definitely have an interesting story here with a lot of potential. However, I do feel that the story is hindered by the word count of the contest because you had to jump from section to section in order to get all of the story put into under 2,000 words. Some of the sections are mostly dialogue and while they give important information at times, it starts to come across as too much dialogue and lacks some of the details that would really help to give the reader a real sense of the world around those talking. Now that the contest is over, I would suggest developing things further and putting more words into each section to even out the pace, so it doesn't jump around too much. Having a few different sections is fine, we don't need every minute of their conversation and story, just keep developing some parts more to help with the transitions and to keep the reader from losing what is happening in the story. If you enjoyed the story, putting more in will be a benefit and bring even more to the story for any reader who comes upon it.


Thank you for taking the time to develop this story following the prompts of the contest. We appreciated your entry and hope you enjoyed the challenge from the August site contest. Good luck with the story if you decide to continue working on it more in the future.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of The Last Miracle  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: A touching story that used the character based prompt to create a story about a stage magician on the verge of giving up the chance for a change. While at time when reading I had a minor struggle to follow the story, overall it's a good approach that other readers will enjoy.


Prompt: The contest had a specific set of details that were required for the story. While a character aspect as expected from the prompt since it is a character based contest, the addition of the conflict issue to include the real magic one time in relation to the fake magic character, there were some definite expectations. It was easy to see the prompts inspiration in the story with the main character being a stage magician and the development of the story towards the end.


Other Notes: Nice work with the story. The addition of the girl as the secondary character pestering the MC about the apprentice angle before bringing out later the aspects that develop to fit the story part of the prompt was a good choice. While the story is interesting, as I mentioned in the overall section, I did have a little bit of a struggle to follow the story after about the half way mark. It may need some more development or might just be my own personal struggles since we don't always understand stories in the same way. The technical side looks pretty good from the times I glanced over the story with nothing really standing out as a distraction from the nitpicky side of things.

Thank you for entering the official contest in August. I hope you enjoyed the challenge of the prompt and the story you created with the stage magician main character.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of The Good Witch  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: An interesting approach to a story through the use of magic, entertainment and character. It has a nice beginning with focus on the point of view character, giving the reader a chance to dip into the world, to get to know some things before stepping towards what will become the conflict. The general story and use of the contest prompt created something that will entertain different readers that come across the story.


Prompt: The contest did have some specifics that were required with the character being the focus but also the plot point that was important. While many took the approach of the fake magic character being the viewpoint/main character. It was nice to have the different approach that gave a different twist. This can be helpful when it comes to a contest that can get around 20 entries. The character stood out because she was the source of the real magic that was required in the prompt but that she enjoyed watching stage (fake) magicians and that showed during the story. The real magic was the focus of the story and made things interesting for the reader.


Other Notes: Overall, you did well in the creation of the story. The conflict and characters were well created with limited things that stood out on the technical side. One thing to consider would be to work on the consistency of spacing between paragraphs. Things look fine in the beginning but when we get to where there are other characters and interactions it starts to get a little off with the spacing as some paragraphs have a couple sections kept together and others have spaces between them. In one, right after we meet Ambrose, it seems like there was an enter after a sentence when it wasn't needed and maybe it was supposed to be a single paragraph. Might want to do a quick read/edit check to make sure things are set up to avoid tripping any readers or distract from focus on the story. And maybe consider cutting back on one of the long paragraphs in the beginning. I found them interesting but some people might be less tempted to see longer paragraphs in the very beginning. If it makes sense, bring split one of them up but don't worry too much about them as the overall setting that part creates is working. Nothing else stands out and you created an interesting story that people will enjoy.

Thank you for taking the time to enter the site's official contest in August. Hope that you enjoyed writing the story and the challenge that the prompt created.



Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Darlene  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: This is a good story that used a character pretending to be a fortune teller who experiences a change of pace and struggle from a doubting client. It has a nice approach with the character, showing just enough in the beginning in order to set the scene and give a starting point for Darlene, the point of view character. From there, the reader can follow the journey of having to struggle in the small time circus venue and the use of the crystal ball for the prediction along with what becomes the conflict.


Prompt: The characters and plot for the story work in relation to the contest requirements from the character focused prompt. It was a bit of a challenge this time around since it was more than just using a specific type of character in a story. You had to use the character and add the plot element of fake and real magic in a way that both made sense but also would stand out in competition. Darlene works with her being a fortune teller that uses fake predictions in order to survive and the way the story develops provides the change with the conflict rising to the magic at the end of the story.



Other Notes: Overall, the writing is well done. One minor thing to consider with the look for the reader would be to maybe put the information about the contest and the word count at the end of the story instead of the beginning. While this isn't wrong or incorrect to place it at the top, it may be better to have the focus be the story and anyone who needs the extra details can get to it at the end. Speaking of ending... I'd also recommend removing "the end" at the end of the story because it's not really needed. In fact, while it does give that "this is done" influence for the reader, it actually detracts from the impact of the last line for the story.

The story itself works with the way you have developed the conflict and characters. While I could have used even more information and details, at the same time it's fine in the current length. It can be a challenge to get the balance of description, details, character and action within first person without it becoming forced sounding or going overboard. If you add to this it could bring another layer to the story, if not then this works well already.

Thank you for taking the time to create this story and entering the official contest from August. I hope that it was a fun challenge for you and that you enjoy the story created here.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.

Overall: A different approach created with the prompt of character and plot point involving magic, both fake and real. Don't often see the usage of present tense (since past tense is far more common) in a story. While I'm not a fan of the tense as a reader for most stories, it is something that other readers may really appreciate. I like the link with the loss the character has experienced, the source of the stage magic supplies and the way the conflict develops at the end. Everything ties together quite well.


Prompt: The contest did have a couple of specific requirements, even with the focus being character due to the name of the contest. Having the character and plot requirement can be a challenge at times but this round it worked in a way that made it easy for most to interpret in different ways. The story here has both elements that are easy for any reader to find. The main character attempting the sort of stage magic and usage of the wand along with the influence of the other character worked well together. The end (I won't say what for people who read the review first) is a nice touch connecting the other requirement of the prompt. Nicely done.


Other Notes: One minor thing to consider that is the location of the prompt information. While it's not a part of the story, it can be an element that needs work or editing. I say this because right now it's right at the very end of the story and looks like it might be part of it. I would drop it down at least a few spaces to give the reader a reason to pause after the very last line from the main character. Even better would be to use a drop note so the readers don't see the note about the contest and prompt unless they click on the link to drop it down, but just having space would be enough.

The writing is well done within the use of the point of view and tense. I don't see many who use the tense and I do appreciate that consistency, which can be a challenge at times. It is a good story and also see that even a little more development could bring things further. Or perhaps a little edit run, maybe check for pauses and places to put in commas just to make sure everything is set up well for the reader.

Thank you for taking the time to write this story for the site official contest in August. I hope that you enjoyed the challenge of the prompt and are happy with the story you created.



Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of A Touch of Magic  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: ASR | (5.0)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt.


Overall: This is a very touching story that you've created with the stage magician using the magic tricks to help children in the hospital. It presented a main character who was easy to follow and showcased empathy while dealing with a difficult situation. The conflict developed in a way that made sense with the touching addition and result brought on from the contest prompt. Nicely written and sentimental story here.


Prompt: The prompt from the official contest was an easy to find concept within this particular story. The requirement included the use of a particular character along with a specific approach to the story. The main character is a stage magician, so someone that uses fake magic and tricks, which is the character part of the prompt. The magic instance at the end is the final piece for the prompt and worked well to create the story.


Other Notes: Overall, you did a good job with the story. It is well written and I didn't notice much that stands out in a distracting way with the story. Only thing really that I could maybe point out is to cut down on a couple of exclamation points. Nothing wrong with them but of punctuation it is one that does better limited in order to give the usage even more impact. But they could also remain in the story if that is what you prefer.

Thank you for taking the time to enter the official site contest in August. I hope you enjoyed the challenge of the prompt when creating this story.



Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Magic is Real  
Review by Dawn Embers
In affiliation with The WDC Angel Army  
Rated: ASR | (3.5)
Greetings. I am reviewing your story today for the official contest, "What a Character! : Official WDC Contest [E]. Thank you for entering the contest and making the attempt at the character presented by the prompt. .


Overall: Nice work in creating the story based off the character prompt. While I'm not the biggest fan of the first person point of view, you did well with putting forth the voice of the character. However, I do have to admit that I did find it a little difficult to follow the story. Maybe it needed more words to provide some descriptions or details to help provide more for the reader. Something about it just went around too quick that I had to read a couple of times to really get a full understanding. You did bring some good elements to the character to round her out but I could used even a little more.


Prompt: The prompt was to create a fake magic type of character who then experiences some real magic within the story. Your approach with the stage magician main character works well with the prompt and it is easy for any reader or judge to interpret. It was good to have it be the main character and the backstory creates some depth so we can get to know the situation before getting to the surprise real act.


Other Notes: One thing to maybe consider on the technical side is the story had a fair number of short sentences. Nothing wrong with this approach because it gives an action and a pace for the reader. However, it's a little too many for a good chunk of the story that it might put things a little too fast. We could use a little more variety and imagery to help anchor the story a bit more. While not wrong, it is something to look into that might develop the story further. The end comes off a little too rushed and with more provided, will give the reader a stronger development to follow.

Thank you for taking the time to write this story and enter the official site contest for August. Hope you enjoyed the challenge and the story that you created.


Sig I bought to put on my reviews.




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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