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Public Reviews
Review of Chapter 1: Bitter  
Review by Linz
Rated: 18+ | (3.5)
The first thing that stands out, even from the first paragraph, is that you switch constantly from past to present tense. Doing so makes it hard to read. If you need to switch between the 2, make a definite break - a paragraph break or, even better, another chapter.

It’s starting to give me a headache, but it doesn’t bother me too much

You immediately contradict yourself here. Having read through, you mention his head beginning to pound further on, which makes the second bit redundant.

I feel like there's something missing. Maybe it's the lack of dialogue, or the introverted nature of the MC, but we don't really get much of a feel for what's going on around him. We know, for example, that he's surrounded by the usual patrons . . . But you don't really do anything with that fact. Maybe he could pick up snippets of their conversation?

Other than those pointers, you do a good job of setting the tone of the piece, and it's generally well-written. The MC feels real - I think we can all identify the kind of character he is, as does the bartender, and the pub they're both in.

I know how hard it it is to get the creative juices flowing again after a bout of writer's block, so well done for gettin this far.

Review of The quiet one  
Review by Linz
Rated: E | (3.0)
It's a good story, very emotional, makes the reader wonder what's happened to the protagonist's family and what she has to do. That keeps the reader engaged.

The waitress approached her which made her jump.(new paragraph here) 'An ice coffee please,' She asked meekly.

I've copied this from the story to highlight a number of grammar issues. Dialogue should always be on its own line, separated from the surrounding narrative, lower case "s" for "she", and a comma should be at the end of the dialogue sentence, inside the quotation marks. For example, if this paragraph was a story's narrative, then I'd write dialogue like this:

"It's a lovely day," she said.

Every time a new character speaks, they'd have their own line:

"It's a lovely day," she said.
"Yes, it is, isn't it?" he agreed.

The narrative would then continue below the dialogue.

Hope that helps. :)
Review of Holiday Hijinks  
Review by Linz
Rated: 18+ | (3.0)
One of the challenges with dialogue-only stories, is helping the reader follow what each character is saying, and how many characters there are.

Both of these issues let you down. I don't know how many characters there are, and the characters themselves aren't really clear.

For example: Going by the opening scene, I'd have said the person who phoned the police was a man. Turns out it's a sub-adult female, but that isn't clear until someone points it out. Likewise, I don't see where Thomas and his aunt come in?

Nor do I see the relevance of cussing and the driving career?

We don't know the names of either the character who phoned the police, nor the one who tries to lynch her. A Sally Resbock is mentioned, but there's no way of saying whether or not she was the one who confronted the character who phoned the police in the opening scene.

Santa sounds young, and "aye, aye, Santa," sounds like something an elf would say - not Mrs Claus.

You do get the police character/s spot on - they sound believable, and the police station scene is distinct enough from the scene/s from outside the station to be easy enough to follow. Nor are there any SPAG issues that I could see.

So, in summary:

1) Include the names of the characters inside dialogue - especially the main characters, and especially in the opening scenes. This would make it easier to "get to know" each character, and we might then be able to discern a little more clearly who's saying what. (The poloce officers don't need names).

2) Work on different uses of language/voice. I doubt Santa would call his Mrs, "Babe" - he's supposed to be an indeterminantly old man. And while a wife might jokingly say, "aye aye Santa/Sir/Mr_____", given who Santa is, I'd say it would work best if she said something like, "Okay, dear." Or something like that.

3) See if there are any characters you could cut out without sacrificing the flow of the story.

But, it's an interesting story that just needs a little tweaking to make it awesome.

Well done, and thanks for posting it. *Wink*
Review of Misbelief  
Review by Linz
Rated: E | (3.5)
Beautiful story, but there are a few inconsistencies:

1) The twins. They're mentioned, but don't really add anything to the story. I'd say they'd actually work better as dogs or cats, or some other pet that can be left alone - not seven year old kids.

2) If he was left alone from the age of 10, why wasn't he taken into care? Someone, somewhere would have known there was a feral kid trying to fend for himself, and done something about it. Police stopping to ask where the kid's parents are, a neighbour getting suspicious that she's never seen an adult, a teacher raising concerns with the head and getting the authorities involved. Likewise, neighbours would see him coming and going, they'd know there were kids in that house, alone. They'd call the authorities.

3) Also, on that note, he wouldn't be constantly happy if his parents hated him. Kids want their parents' approval, and not being able to get it affects their self confidence. He'd be withdrawn, keeping to himself, not happy-go-lucky and trying to make everyone else feel better. If he was so happy and confident, it makes more sense that that would rub off on the adults around him, than it does that they hated him for it.

4) Faye hates herself and has self confidence issues. Take it from someone who knows - the very last thing she'd be wearing is a tight-fitting, backless dress. Of any length. More like an oversized sweater and full-length trousers. To wear something like that dress takes confidence.

That aside, the way in which they meet, and the way in which they part is beautiful and touching, and I like the snow pictures and the mystery around them. I can see a prequel centred around that - you could really build up the sense of mystery, while keeping James in the shadow, smiling softly to himself.
Review by Linz
Rated: E | (5.0)
Well written, very touching, and so moving. Very true, too. It has a Wizard of Oz touch to it.

The only problem I had with it, is the ending's so predictable, I saw it coming a mile off.
Review of Hot Air  
Review by Linz
Rated: E | (4.0)
Lol, I like these. Very funny and well written.
Review by Linz
Rated: E | (1.0)
Every villain is the hero of their own story, and likewise, every hero is therefore the villain in that story. That isn't anything new. It's a tactic to make the villains/antagonists a little more sympathetic. That's exactly what Disney have done with Maleficent, and what theatre has done with Wicked.

That said, I think it would take skill to explain how Cinders was forced to cook and clean for her stepfamily.

Other than that, this story feels unfinished to me, which is why I've given it the rating I have. I'm not saying it's awful - because it isn't - but it does need work. Cinderella doesn't even get mentioned - not by name, anyway, so it's a stretch to call her a villain.

There's also a lot of "telling" and not a lot of "showing". For example, when Lady Tremaine begs her new husband to stay and not travel for work, then you could show that with dialogue. . . If I may?
"Oh, darling, please don't go! We don't need jewels, or new clothing - I could easily make anything we do need. I've been alone for so long, I don't want to have to cope alone again!"

I'm also intrigued as to what her daughters think of being forced to give up their luxurious lifestyle, just because their mother fell in love with a commoner. (it's been a very long time since I've watched or read Cinderella, but wasn't her father an axeman, or a carpenter?) I was always left with the impression that they were worse than their mother.

You have a good idea for a novella or perhaps novel, and as Cinders goes on to marry a prince, her stepfamily's fall from riches to rags while she goes in the opposite direction, would be one that I'd find intriguing, but as a flash fiction piece, I don't think it could work.

Good luck with it. :) If you do extend it, I'm happy to come back and review it again.
Review of My Blog  
Review by Linz
Rated: E | (3.5)
Sounds like you're having a tough time of it. Depression is the worst - I struggle with it, too. My advice? Don't just have a To Do list - have a "Done" list, too. I'm sure you know, but when you're depressed, even getting out of bed in the morning is an achievement - so count that as something to go on the "Done" list.

Have you tried analysing you thought patterns? What I mean by that is, whenever I feel like. . . Say, "I'm a useless human being/my dog would be better off with someone else." Or whatever self-harming thought I have at the time, I stop and think to myself, "if I wasn't depressed, would I be thinking like this?" Answer's invariably "no", so I tell myself, just the depression, being an anus again." (Or words to that effect. ;) )

Congratulations on the pregnancy.

I like the "mostly vegan" comment. I call myself dairy and egg-free vegetarian, as I'll only have honey, but "mostly vegan" is easier to say.

Be kind to yourself. Take a deep breath and remember, "this too shall pass."
Review by Linz
Rated: E | (3.5)
There is some very vivid imagery here, and I feel like I was there. I understand the need to get up and out of the door before breakfast, so I can relate to that.

I don't really see the need to mention the make/designers of the girls' bags/purses. If I were to describe a bag, it would probably focus on the size. But that could be a personal thing.

When you describe the weather as "warm" I felt that was enough - no need to put "a bit warm". For me, "a bit warm", would be cool.

"At the door side" = nearest the door.

"Zoe had to stop at a cafe" and "Zoe had to turn round to her sisters in the back." In both of these cases, I think you'd say exactly the same thing if you just said "Zoe stopped at a café" and "Zoe turned round to her sisters." And cut the "had to" from those sentences. "Had to" suggests she was forced, and as she's driving with her siblings, I'm guessing no one is forcing her to do anything.

Zoe goes to a café for pastries for their breakfast. Why didn't she just buy the coffee from there, saving her two or three trips? Also, I'm in England, so maybe America's different, but certainly here, coffee is sold unsweetened, so it's up to the buyer to add sugar (or not), so when Zoe asks for sugar, for me, it goes without saying that she prefers it sweeter than they make it.

Each time a new character speaks, start a new line - although that could be a formatting issue, and therefore not your fault.

Missing opening quotation mark before "That's $15.75. . ." (Expensive coffee!)

Shacking - I think you meant "shaking"? No "c"

"Hailey was shocked to see her brother and sisters staring at her astonished and horrified."

Those are just my opinions on your story, but otherwise I enjoyed it. Well done. :)
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