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Printed from http://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/majerialdo
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31 Public Reviews Given
Public Reviews
1
1
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello, Kenzie,

This is an informative piece that questions the morals and conscience of your readers. Do they, in fact, partake in such dredgery of copyright-raping? Are they guilty of, even once, sending such an e-mail whose author is unknown? Perhaps it's time they change their ways, once they have realised the consequences of their actions.

Paragraph One:

And have you noticed that they usually arrive in your inbox attributed to the most famous author of all – anonymous?

I know what you probably think that I'm going to write about this sentence, but I'm not. I think that the "and" at the beginning of this sentence fits, and should be kept. And there's one for unpredictability. Bling! (Haha..And there's...). I've been reading for a long time to-day, forgive my corniness. What I do want to write about this sentence, is that I'd like to see a semicolon proceed the word "all" rather than a dash, or you can change the arrangement of the words all-to-gether.

Read: And have you noticed that they usually arrive in your inbox attributed to the most famous author of all; anonymous?

OR

Read: And have you noticed that they usually arrive in your inbox attributed to anonymous, the most famous author of all?

In fact, I like the second one better, but it's up to you (obviously).

And as a great writer, why would anonymous not want to share his/her name with us, or at least his/her pen name?

Okay, this time I'm going to write it. Too many "and's" at the beginning of sentences gives me a bad taste in my mouth. It's like biting into a delicious cookie then realising that there are walnuts in it, to which you are allergic...except not quite as deadly. Really, you can just chop that "and" right out of the sentence and let it be as it will. You may, as well, want to choose either his or her, rather than the combined his/her. Sure, you want to be politically correct and of course, you don't want to offend anyone by making yourself seem sexist. The thing is, if you decide to choose the word "he" or the word "she," you are not being sexist; you are making a general statement about a population. A population which happens to be great "anonymous" writers. So pick a side and stick with it.

Read: As a great writer, why would anonymous not want to share her name with us, or at least her pen name?

Note: I chose to use the female generalization of the population because you are female and, as the author, have the ultimate decision, but mine (as reader/reviewer/critic/etcetera) was based on your gender.

Paragraph Two:

I had never really given much thought to the numerous e-mail forwards I’ve received from friends and acquaintances since I first connected to the Internet.

This sentence carries two tenses; the past and the present. Either make the whole sentence in the present, or the whole sentence in the past, but please don't mix them. The past, in this sentence, is signified by the beginning of the sentence with the phrase "I had never..." The present is signified in the middle of the sentence with the phrase "forwards I've received..."

Read: I had never really given much thought to the numerous e-mail forwards I'd received from friends and acquaintances since I first connected to the Internet.

OR

Read: I have never really given much thought to the numerous e-mail forwards I've received...

Since the rest of this paragraph is written using past-tense words, I suggest that you choose the first option as opposed to the second.

E-mail forwards just seemed to be a fact of life, something to appreciate and pass on or ignore and delete.

The comma after the word "life" should be a semi-colon.

Read: E-mail forwards just seemed to be a fact of life; something to appreciate and pass on or ignore and delete.

Then in the course of a few weeks, I had reasons to ponder the origin of e-mail forwards.

The "then" does not have a place in this sentence. The word "then" implies a sequence of actions that coincide with one another. Since there is no real sequence of actions that precedes the action in this sentence, the word "then" should not have been added. All-so, the e-mail forwards have separate origins, so you should place an "s" at the end of the word "origin" in this sentence to make it plural.

Read: In the course of a few weeks, however, I had reasons to ponder the origins of e-mail forwards.

Paragraph Three:

First, a writer friend of mine posted a beautiful pearl of wisdom at another writer’s site I used to frequent.

Having read through this piece twice before reviewing it, I have not found a place where the word "first" belongs here. Considering the fact that there is no "second" or "third," the word "first" sort of floats on its own like a lily pad...leaving us to wonder if it actually does have a counterpart, or if it is to remain in its own solemn solitude forevermore. Except...it's not quite as poetic as a lonely lily pad. If you had a second somewhere in this piece, I would not have brought this up, but as it stands, you do not, so I think that you should remove the "first" by replacing it with a nifty phrase, or adding a "second" in the piece somewhere. I'm not saying that you have to add a second "reason to ponder the origins of e-mail forwards," but to actually add the word "second" or "secondly" in this piece somewhere. I'd all-so like to add that the word "writer's" should be "writers'," unless there was only one writer who frequented the site. As that is not the case since at least you, your friend, and your friend's reviewers frequent(ed) the site, "writers'" is the correct word. All-so, "used to" is such a bland phrase. It's like Grape Nuts, except less disgusting. I'd suggest jazzing the phrase up with something different.

Read: One reason began when a writer friend of mine posted a beautiful pearl of wisdom at another writers' site I once frequented.

OR

Read: One of said reasons was brought forth when a writer friend of mine posted a beautiful pearl of wisdom at another writers' site that I frequented at one time in the past.

You get the idea, I'm sure.

Paragraph Four:

You’ve probably received it too; I’ve received it now from about four or five others. It’s titled, "Some Things You Keep."

Eh. You may look at this as me wanting to change this for the sake of changing this, but I think it's just a little cluttered. I have a slight stuttering problem when I read any form of literature out loud (and even in free speech every once in a while). While it's a pain in the butt some-times, it's all-so a "blessing" in disguise at times. For example, if I read something out loud and falter more than twice, I know that either my speech problem is getting worse, or the sentence(s) is (are) not languid enough. I can give you a suggestion as to what would be better organization for these sentences, but I can't give you a definite answer as to what to do with them (if you so choose to do anything with them).

Read: As I've received it now from about four or five others, you probably have as well. It's entitled "Some Things You Keep."

Paragraph Five:

I pondered this for a while and realized that most of the wonderful forwards I’ve received have probably been written by someone who deserves to be named and credited, and are probably copyrighted materials.

The fact that the author deserves to be named and credited is definite, not probable. If the fact were probable, there would be no point to you writing this piece, because there is all-ways that "chance" that the author doesn't deserve to be named and credited. The fact that the materials are copyrighted is definite as well. I believe so, anyway. Isn't there a law floating around there about copyrights that states a copyright is automatically named to its creator once the creation has been created? I'm sure there is. [...] Yes, I just looked it up and that is so. Even so, I think that you should keep the "probably" with the copyright statement, as there are some exceptions to the copyrights and who's to say that some of the authors of those pieces haven't handed their copyright to someone else for that very purpose?

Read: I pondered this for a while and realized that most of the wonderful forwards I'[d] received have been written by someone who deserves to be named and credited, and are almost definitely copyrighted materials.

But, it’s obvious to me at least, that they are probably being sent time and again without the author’s knowledge or consent.

The only suggestion that I have for this sentence is that you be rid of the "but" at the beginning of the sentence.

Read: It's obvious to me, at least, that they are probably being sent time and again without the author's knowledge or consent.

Paragraph Eight:

Still, when they arrive in our inboxes, they are attributed to that same famous writer as all the others – to anonymous.

The word "to" doesn't belong before the word "anonymous." Since you all-ready stated that the attribution is to the "same famous writer as all the others," the second "to" is redundant. All-so, instead of a dash, you may consider using a semi-colon.

Read: Still, when they arrive in our inboxes, they are attributed to that same famous writer as all the others; anonymous.

Paragraph Ten:

But, I realized that the graphic had not created itself, and I doubted that "anonymous" was both a graphic artist and a wonderful writer.

I know it's easier to write "but" than it is to find a different way to begin a sentence, but as you well know, easy is not in the writing business.

Read: However, I realized that the graphic had not...

OR

Read: I realized, though, that the graphic had not...

Paragraph Thirteen:

Finally, I discovered the true originator of the graphic, a professional graphic artist.

The comma after the word "graphic" should be a semi-colon.

Read: Finally, I discovered the true originator of the graphic; a professional graphic artist.

Paragraph Fourteen:

I also learned from him that he’d hired an attorney to deal with those who have stolen his artwork.

You have two tenses in this sentence. You learned that he had hired an attorney to deal with those who have stolen his artwork. From the looks of it, the only word that doesn't fit in this sentence is the word "have."

Read: I also learned from him that he'd hired an attorney to deal with those who had stolen his artwork.

Those not willing to do as requested were given 30 days to comply, then a lawsuit was filed.

I notice that you rely moderately-to-heavily on the use of commas. That's just fine, but can some-times be taxing on the reader with all of the stop-and-go that commas create. So for this sentence. I suggest a slight change of wording so that you don't have to use a comma within it.

Read: Those [unwilling] to do as requested were given 30 days to comply before a lawsuit was filed.

Paragraph Seventeen:

They were probably originally at a free e-card site. Yet they continue to make their way to my inbox, with no acknowledgment of the original designer.

I suggest a combination of the two sentences to make one, as this paragraph reads a bit choppy due to all of the short sentences.

Read: They [probably originated from] a free e-card site, yet they continue to make their way to my inbox with no acknowledgment of the original designer.

Paragraph Eighteen:

Hopefully, the next time you receive a wonderfully written story or a beautifully designed graphic in your e-mail inbox, you’ll do what I do now. You’ll consider the friend who sent it to you. And since you know that friend did not write it, you’ll delete it rather than forwarding.

First of all, the comma after the word "hopefully" is optional. It is my suggestion that the comma be eliminated, but it is, of course, your call. All-so, the second and last sentences should be combined to give the piece a more flowing end, not to mention the fact that you began the last sentence with the word "and," and I'm sure that you know, by now, my feelings on that.

Read: [I hope that] the next time you receive a wonderfully written story or a beautifully designed graphic in your e-mail inbox, you'll do what I do now. You'll consider the friend who sent it to you and, [upon deciding that] your friend did not write it, you'll delete it rather than forwarding.

Thank-you again, Kenzie, for your time and for your written works. You certainly have talent in your chosen passion, and that is obvious to the reader that considers your work.

Forever be inspired.

Muse

This review was written by a member of the
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#1064538 by Not Available.
2
2
Review of Grow On, America  
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello Kenzie,

I like how you have organized this piece. Your impatience and disapproval of how far we, as Americans in general, have allowed the divide in our country to become. I can sense your anger and your sadness that instead of letting the 9/11 tragedy give us a reason to come to-gether, we have made the attack a tool to wedge us apart.

This piece was all-so written all-most like a memorial speech. I can picture someone standing at a podium, surrounded by thousands of people, speaking these words. Tears would come to her eyes as the frustration grew and she looked at all of the people that envelope her and she sees that her words aren't making a damn bit of difference. Until she sees one small boy tugging on his racist mother's skirt, and pleading with her to hand the lunch that they had packed to the weak-looking man whose ethnicity is of hatred to the mother...and she does.

Paragraph One:

And we were equally disgusted at ourself for not being able to turn away.

I mentioned in my previous review that you should avoid using words like "and" and "but" as the start of a sentence. You could probably get away with it once, at most twice, in a piece that is the length that this one is. However, there are many other options that are just as effective that don't involve breaking the rules of grammar.

Read: We were equally disgusted at ourselves for not being able to turn away.
The easiest and most simple solution is to simply remove the "offending" word. Or, you could re-word the sentence, adding a word here or there, but I don't think that you would want to go the "complex sentence" rout in a piece like this one.

Paragraph Two:

There isn't anything that I would change in this paragraph. I would like to point out, however, how nicely you chose the phrasing of your sentences. The sentences are short and to the point. They give room for one to pause, as if this piece truely was written to be a speech for many people. It is an announcement that has been well-written and carefully endured.

Stanza Two:

One year ago//We still stood tall//And remembered//Fallen heroes

You probably weren't looking for review of the poem, but there was just one small thing that sort of made me want to change it. The last phrase of the stanza "Fallen heroes" seems to have one too few syllables. I think that you should add the word "Our" to the beginning of that line not only to add the missing syllable, but to unite the stanza's message even more.

Read:One year ago//We still stood tall//And remembered//Our fallen heroes

Paragraph Three:

There isn't anything in this paragraph that I personally feel right changing that needs to be changed. However, I can give you a suggestion as far as what you can do to make this paragraph better. I noticed that in this paragraph, your sentences are much more complex and verbose than the sentences in the previous paragraphs. I think that, if you want to keep the same consistancy, you should make the sentences shorter and more simple; not enough to make them choppy, but just enough to give it the same "announcement" feel as before.

Paragraph Four:

The world watched as our unity seemed to fade, as we fought amongst each other, as we wrote in anger about taking lives or sacrificing the lives of our servicemen.

One option that you can go for with this sentence would be to split it up into smaller sentences, to give the piece that overall "announcement" feeling. You are emotional about something, and it's about time that the world knew it...announce what upsets you, really sock it to 'em. Get them to read and think about what you are telling them. If you decide not to split this sentence up into smaller sentences, you should add the word "and" between the words "other," and "as." I think, as well, that the phrase "one another" could easily replace the phrase "each other," as it is a more fluid phrase than the other, though it means the same thing. I think, too, that the word "or" doesn't fit between the words "lives" and "sacrificing." It should be replaced by the word "and." Unless, of course, the lives of the servicemen are what we are taking and sacrificing, in which case better wording would be suggested.

Read: The world watched as our unity seemed to fade. The world watched as we fought amongst one another, and the world watched as we wrote in anger about taking lives and sacrificing the lives of our servicemen.

OR

Read: The world watched as our unity seemed to fade. The world watched as we fought amongst one another, and the world watched as we wrote in anger about taking the lives, or "sacrificing" the lives of our servicemen.

OR

Read: The world watched as our unity seemed to fade, as we fought amongst one another, and as we wrote in anger about taking lives and sacrificing the lives of our servicemen.

or

Read: The world watched as our unity seemed to fade, [...], and as we wrote in anger about taking the lives, or "sacrificing" the lives of our servicemen.

Paragraph Five:

This year, we somberly remembered the lives lost--both in the tragedy of Sept. 11 and since then in the war that resulted.

I don't like the abbreviation that you made of the word "September." You spelled the word out in the beginning of the paragraph, and I think that you should continue to spell it out. All-so, the word "has," I feel, should be placed between the words "that" and "resulted."

Read: This year, we somberly remembered the lives lost--both in the tragedy of September 11 and since then in the war that has resulted.

Paragraph Six:

Just one thought.

Depending on what the thought is, there are a couple things that you can do with this sentence (paragraph, actually). If the thought is the paragraph that proceeds it ("We're not as united...disagree.), then you should replace the period at the end of this sentence with a colon. If the thought is "We must continue to stand tall. We must grow on," you should move the whole fifth paragraph after the paragraph that proceeds it.

Read: Just one thought:

We're not as united...us to disagree.


OR

Read: We're not as united...us to disagree.

As young people...Just one thought:

We must continue to stand tall. We must grow on.


Thank-you for your time. Your piece was an interesting read, and nothing that could be changed in it really gave me a bad taste in my mouth (so to speak). I like the organization that you chose and the tone that spoke out to the reader (myself). Over all, well-done.

This review was written by a member of the
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#1064538 by Not Available.
3
3
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hello, Kenzie,

I agree with the point that you have made in this piece. It is a duty of those of us who are more fortunate than others to give to those who are less fortunate. I think that it is a lesson that we all need to learn at one point or another in our lives, even if it's one that we must learn more than once.

One thing that I would like to see in this piece more-so, however, is what you would do, or what you do all-ready that is so opposite from the woman in the story's actions. I want to know if you have ever invited a lonely person to dinner, or what you have donated to the charities or poor families of the town. I am not trying to disprove you or question your merit, but it would bring a stronger argument to your judgment of this woman if you are, in fact, the more righteous of the two.

Another thing I would like you to address, is why you didn't tell the woman any of those things. I want to know what stopped you from helping this woman make a better choice, what caused your silence?

Other than that, there are several things that can be changed for the better as far as content and mechanics are concerned.

Paragraph One:

She had gotten such a deal!
         The word "gotten" is such a horrible word. It's outlandish, brash, a sore to the eyes and ears, and just doesn't come across well at all. Acquired, achieved, attained, made and obtained are all suitable replacements for such a, in my mind grotesque, word.

I watched as a woman in the grocery store excitedly put four turkeys in her shopping cart.
         A bit out-of-order in this address, your first sentence seemed a bit weak. The way that you have written this first sentence, it seems as though you are writing a journal, not an article of your critical judgment of the greed of a woman who has just "made such a deal." I think that you should consider revising it to something a bit more eye-catching.
         For example, perhaps you were filled with emotion when you saw this happening come about. You may begin the bit with:
I was horrified as I watched a woman in the grocery store excitedly [place] four turkeys in her shopping cart.
         Notice that I replaced the word "put" with the word "placed." I just like how "placed" sounds more-so than I do the word "put," but (as all of these suggestions are) it is completely optional. You may not have been horrified, but perhaps angered or just upset, even. Either way, emotion has been evoked within you, otherwise you would not have written this piece.

She chattered endlessly to those around her, who really didn't care, about how inexpensive turkeys were at this time of year.
         Since this piece has been written in the past tense, the word "this" is incorrectly used. Writing in the present tense of a time period that has passed, one would use the word "that" rather than "this." All-so, I would like to mention that instead of the pause caused by the commas that surround the phrase "who really didn't care," I would make it a side-phrase enclosed in parentheses.
Read: She chattered endlessly to those around her (who really didn't care) about how inexpensive turkeys were at that time of year.

She told everyone in the check-out line that she would put three turkeys in the new large freezer that had just been delivered and now sat ready in her garage for such "good deals".
         The only thing that I have to comment about this sentence is that the period should be within the quotes, not without them.
Read: She told everyone...for such "good deals."

Paragraph Two:

I wanted to ask her to give one turkey to each of three struggling families that she could easily find, if she just opened her eyes and looked around her.
         This sentence is structured oddly. The way it reads, or the way that I read it, it seems as though there are only three struggling families to be found, however easily. The comma after the word "find" has no place in this sentence as well. I suggest a remedial re-wording.
Read: I wanted to ask her to give each of her three turkeys to three struggling families that she could easily find if she just opened her eyes and looked around her.

I wanted to ask her to make sandwiches from the left over turkey she would undoubtedly have, and take them to the people who live "under the bridge".
         The period belongs within the quotations, not without them. All-so, this would be a good place to tell the reader what you have done of all of the things that you have expressed silently to the woman. Have you, yourself, ever invited lonely persons to your house for a holiday dinner? Have you been so inclined to take a left-over turkey sandwich to someone who has lived "under the bridge?" Again, I am not trying to question your merit, I am simply trying to make your argument and your ability to judge this woman for who she is stronger.
Read: I wanted to ask her to make sandwiches from the left over turkey she would undoubtedly have, and take them to people who live "under the bridge."

Paragraph Three:

Living in the United States, we are generally thankful for the level of prosperity our land of opportunity offers to all.
          I would like to know who you are speaking of, as the general public doesn't recognize how lucky he is for having what he has until he doesn't have it any longer. The United States' capitalist ways is basically about the consumer wanting what he doesn't have, and continuously being unhappy with this second-rate products. The American way is about upgrading, living bigger, being thinner, having the next model of the SUV, gas-guzzling, money-mongering, and so forth. The President of the United States, even, the symbol of what our country is supposed to be...a war-declaring tyrannist who can't run an oil company, can't keep peace with anyone, can't write his own speeches, and can't run a clean vote. In any case, the only point I want to make is that instead of using the word "we" and all that it implies, you should personalise it with the word "I."
Read: Living in the United States, I am generally thankful for the level of prosperity [that] our land of opportunity offers to all.
Even this suggestion isn't perfect, however, because it leads the question of whether or not you have lived elsewhere to know what opportunities are offered, and where.

And we truly believe that those who have not succeeded or reached our own level of worth have done something wrong or have chosen poverty over wealth. How wrong we are to feel that way.
         First of all, you should avoid at most costs beginning a sentence with words such as "or," "and" and "but." I let it slide earlier in this piece, because it works. However, you usually can't get away with starting a sentence with the word "and." There is all-most all-ways (and by all-most, I mean 99.5% of the time) a better way to begin a sentence. You should get away from referring the whole of a region by using all-inclusive words like "we" and "us." You may notice that when I was making my argument in the previous paragraph, I did not type "we," but "the general public." You should get into the habit of using such phrases as that, so that if your reader happens to believe otherwise, he does not feel obligated to stand up for himself because you have included him in a group of which he feels he has no part. By using the words "we" and "us," you are including yourself in the mix as well. This means that you feel that those who are in poverty have chosen such a financial state and subjects you, as the writer, to criticism and skepticism as to the validity of your piece, which spends its time arguing for the sake of those who are in poverty. If you so choose to re-word the first sentence of this argument, you may want to consider eradicating the second (if you aren't a part of the group of whom you speak).
Read: In general, Americans truly believe that those who have not succeeded or reached their own level of worth have done something wrong, or have chosen poverty over wealth.
         The reason why I have decided not to include the sentence "How wrong we are to feel that way," or "How wrong they are to feel that way," is because either way, it makes the author, you, seem like an ass (pardon me).
OR
Read: In general, Americans truly believe that those who have not succeeded or reached their own level of worth have done something wrong, or have chosen poverty over wealth. I, too, am guilty of this belief, but have realized that we are wrong to feel that way.
Etcetera.

Paragraph Four:

I read recently that we define poverty in the United States as a family of four making less than $17,000. That means that every single parent with three children who earns a minimum wage is far below poverty level. People like this are all around us, and yet we choose not to see them. If we do see them, we believe they have chosen this poverty.
         This paragraph should be integrated with the paragraph that precedes it. I won't go so far as to re-write it for you in an example because you are obviously an author of high enough skill to do such. However, I do implore you to rephrase the all-inclusive uses of the words "us," "we" and "our."

Paragraph Five:

Our government supposedly guarantees that there won't be discrimination against age. And yet, there are growing numbers of individuals in the over forty category who find themselves being replaced by younger persons who will work for less. And, because we have become a society living on credit cards, a person who loses a job is sometimes just days or weeks away from homelessness. People like this are all around us, and yet we choose not to see them. Or if we do, we somehow think they deserved the downsizing or that they have chosen this poverty.
         I do like the repetition of the idea that there are people "like this" all around us who we do not see and so forth. However, the use of the words "we," "us" and "our" are too all-inclusive for my liking. Grouping on a certain level is good, but once you start to talk about everybody, you start running into problems, because not everybody is blind to such things as poverty, even if they themselves are not sufferers of it.

Paragraph Six:

I have no solutions to poverty. But I do know that while countless families will sit around tables piled with mountains of food during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, there will be many not so fortunate. Perhaps if each of us are just reminded of this, it will prompt us to want to give to charities or to invite lonely people to our
homes. If every family who has would give something to those who have not, what a glorious holiday it would be this year. I know God would be smiling in his Heaven.

         I'd like to see the first two sentences of this final paragraph to be merged a) so that the second sentence doesn't begin with the word "but," and b) because it looks better. The phrase "there will be many not so fortunate" is a fragmented thought. The words "who are" between the word "many" and the word "not" would make the phrase seem more filled-in. I do like the all-inclusiveness in this paragraph, because as long as there is poverty in this world, there is all-ways more that a person can do to help, even if he all-ready does much. The word "his" before "Heaven" should be capitalized as well, as it is referring to a Holy Deity; GOD.
Read: I have no solutions to poverty, but I do know that while countless families will sit around tables piled with mountains of food during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, there will be many who are not so fortunate. Perhaps if each of us are just reminded of this, it will prompt us to want to give to charities or to invite lonely people to our homes. If every family that has, would give something to those who have not, what a glorious holiday it would be this year. I know God would be smiling in His Heaven.

The Note:

Perhaps I should have focused more on the look of hunger and hurt on the face of another woman in line as she held her meager food purchases in one arm while holding the hands of her three young children. That sad woman was really what prompted this. I wondered whether that mom would have a turkey this year, and I wished I could have purchased one for her.
         According to your piece, perhaps you should have focused more on the look of hunger and hurt on the face of another woman in line as she held her meager food purchase in one arm while holding the hands of her three young children. All-so according to your piece, you could have invited the family to your house for such a dinner that you could provide; you might not have had as much, but they would have had more. Again, I am not questioning your merit, I am simply suggesting to you what you may have thought to suggest to the lady in the story.

All-in-all, the piece was written with great thought. Corrections can be made to make it better not only how it has been written, but all-so how the content is presented. I think that your focus definitely should have been elsewhere as far as the beginning of this piece goes. I would all-so like to note that title does not fit the piece. No-where in this piece do you mention anyone being thank-full nor un-thank-full for what one has. I think that you should either add something in this piece that deals with thank-full-ness, or find a different title for the piece.

Thank-you for your time.

Forever be inspired,

Muse
4
4
Review of One Too Many  
Review by Muse
Rated: 13+ | (3.5)
Hello, Cherry,

This story was much better written then the other stories that I have reviewed so far. In this story, you have displayed much improvement and growth as a short-story writer.

I like that throughout the story, you alternate between the past and present tense to tell the story in two different ways; in the perspective of the character, Kathy, and in the forgotten memory of the character, Kathy.

Paragraph One:

The second to last sentence of this paragraph is missing a comma after the word "groggy."

Read:

Dazed and groggy, she had no idea where she was or how she got there.

Paragraph Six:

When illustrating a character's thoughts, you should italicize the thoughts themselves, simply so that they stand out more as thoughts rather than more text.

Read:

‘Where am I?’ Kathy thought as she looked around the room.

Paragraph Seven:

The second sentence of this paragraph is a bit off. It's a bit simple too. There have been quite a few simple sentences in this piece that work; this isn't one of them.

Read:

By the time Kathy moved from the dance floor, she was hot and sweaty.

The last sentence of this paragraph needs a little work as well. The word "of" should be placed between the words "all" and "her." Also, you began the sentence with a present participle. I don't think that it is the best option for this sentence. Also, since I'm assuming that Kathy and her friends went on the dance floor to-gether, Kathy's friends would still be mingling there, rather than just having started doing so.

Read:

Kathy took a mouthfull of water as she looked around; all of her friends were still mingling on the dance floor.

Paragraph Nine:

The last sentence of this paragraph is grammatically incorrect. You need to ahve the word "were" between the words "eyes" and "sparkling."

Read:

His green eyes were sparkling beneath the flashing lights of the nightclub as he smiled at her.

Paragraph Fourteen:

The first sentence of the paragraph holds the word "towards." Towards is a commonly used word, though it is highly incorrect. The word that should be used is "toward" without the "s."

Read:

Kathy stumbled toward the door.

The second sentence is also grammatically incorrect. The pause break is what causes this sentence to be incorrect. A pause break is something that is used to attach one sentence to another without using words like "and," "or," and "but." Now look at the phrase "barely able to lift them as she moved across the room" and ask yourself if this could stand as a sentence alone. No, right?

Read:

Her legs felt like lead and she was barely able to lift them as she moved across the room.

I don't like how the third and fourth sentences coincide. You should group them into one sentence or write the fourth sentence so that it flows better with the third.

Read:

Panic flooded her body as she turned the door handle only to find it locked.

or

Panic flooded her body as she turned the door handle. The door was locked.

Paragraph Twenty:

The first sentence in this paragraph is a fragmented sentence.

Read:

The doorknob was turning.

Your third sentence is grammatically incorrect as well. You made the same mistake here as you did in several other sentences that I have pointed out; you incorrectly used the pause break.

Read:

Her heart was pounding as it tried to escape her chest.

There should be a comma after the word "slowly" in your fourth sentence.

Read:

Slowly, the door opened.

or

The door opened slowly.

Personally, I think you should go with the first option.

Your fifth sentence is grammatically incorrect as well. First of all, you have no subject. Kathy rushed through, yes, but the sentence doesn't tell the reader what Kathy rushed through. Also, this is verging on a run-on sentence. You should break it up into two different sentences. I also don't like your use of the word "attacker." The person that is entering the room hasn't attacked her yet, and is an unknown person, therefore might not be her attacker at all. In fact, the stranger coming in the room could be, for all the reader knows, Kathy's friend coming in to check on her or something.

Read:

Without waiting to see who was there, Kathy rushed through the opened door. In doing so, she knocked the stranger to the ground.

Paragraph Twenty-One

The second to last sentence of this paragraph shouldn't utilize the pause break. Also, the last sentence is a fragmented sentence.

Read:

Kathy staggered across the room and collapsed in a vacant chair. With her head in her lap, she just sat.

Paragraph Twenty-Two

The second to last sentence as well as the last sentence are both fragemented sentences. I think that you should combine the last three sentences to-gether.

Read:

Kathy felt her way along the smooth wall, stumbling over bags of trash, empty beer bottles and passed out bodies as she tried to find her way out of this nightmare.

The third to last paragraph:

The last sentence of this paragraph deserves a comma after the word "slowly."

Read:

Slowly, she faded into nothingness...

The second to last paragraph:
The sixth sentence of this paragraph is a fragmented sentence. I think that you should combine the last three sentences of this paragraph.

Read:

Her friends surrounded her as they crouched over her limp body and looks of shock and melancholy spread across their faces.

I thorougly enjoyed the paragraph of this story. It brings resolution to the piece, and gives the reader a quiet end to a tumultous story.

I gave this piece a 3.5 rating because I have seen great improvement between this piece and the other two short stories that I have read by this author. There was more detail and the reader gets into the character's head much more than in the other stories. The author paid more attention to detail as far as setting goes. Character development can still be worked on, and sentence structure needs a little help.

Forever be inspired.

Muse

This review was written by a member of the
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#1064538 by Not Available.
5
5
Review of The Little Voice  
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (1.5)
Hello, Cherry,

This was a cute story that I'm sure children would enjoy if it were read to them.

Your paragraphing was well-done, and I hadn't noticed any spelling errors. There were a few things, however, that I feel could be changed for the betterment of this piece.

Paragraph Five:

The phrase a chuckle echoed around the small cavern is vague, especially if this is a story that is meant to be read to small children. You may want to mention that this is in the girl's head, so that the young child can process what a cavern is, as more young children won't know what you're talking about. Also, the reference to Bilbo with the word "he" is incorrect, as you haven't mentioned him before in the paragraph. Therefore the word "he" in the second sentence should be replaced with the name "Bilbo."

Read:

A chuckle echoed around the small cavern in Jamie's head. Bilbo was feeling mighty pleased with himself.

I feel that the third sentence in your fifth paragraph is a bit sketchy as far as young-mind comprehension goes. A young child probably doesn't know what "exhilaration" means, so you may want to try to be more rudimentary with your language. You may want to use words like excitement, joy, happiness, pride, or anything along those lines. Also, "the innocent child" is a bit much as well, maybe if you write "innocent Jamie" or simply "Jamie" instead, it would be more child-friendly.

Read:

It was always a great [joy, excitement, etcetera] to get innocent Jamie to listen and obey what he told her.

The final sentence is a bit of a mess. You referred to the present tense thrice within the sentence, and I'm not sure that I like the end phrase that it is okay to do these things. The phrase doesn't sit well with me, simply because it's giving the child that is interpreting the story a subconscious thought that it is okay to do those things. I think that you should re-write that part of the sentence. I mentioned that you referred to the present tense thrice as well; you used the word "these" when talking about "these days" at the beginning of the sentence, you said "that it is okay" at the end of the sentence, and referred to the actions (things) as "these things" at the end of the sentence. Also, the word "and" after the word "wrong" seems like it would be better if it were the word "so," as "so" is more supporting than the word "and."

Read:

Children those days were taught the difference between right and wrong, so it was more difficult to persuade them [to do things that they knew were bad].

You may have noticed that I placed a phrase in brackets. The reason being for that is, it's a suggested substitute for the original end phrase, but it it obviously at your discretion to decide.

Paragraph Six:

The first sentence of this paragraph contains a word that I feel is too advanced for a young child's r'epertoire of words. The word "crevice" is the advanced word of which I wrote. I don't think that a young child will know what a crevice is, so perhaps you may want to simply leave the original first sentence out completely and use the original second sentence as the first.

Again, you referenced to Bilbo with the word "his" in the original third sentence without having mentioned him before in the paragraph. Remember that when you begin a new paragraph in a story, you're beginning a new line of thoughts. A new line of thoughts that is seperate (however relative) to the previous paragraph calls for a new reference to each character. "The small child" in the previous sentence works, simply because you have not simply said "the child" as the child could be any child, but you described the child as you have previously described Jamie; as a small child.

Within the same sentence, you also made a grammatical error. The sentence is a fragmented sentence because of one word that was, most probably accidentally, left out. The word "was" fits between the words "nose" and "crooked." Also, the word "teacups" is incorrect, because without the apostrophe, "teacups" is the plural form of "teacup," while in the context of your sentence, you are looking for the possessive form of "teacup," which is "teacup's." There are two ways that you can go about giving possession to the teacup. You can either add an apostrophe between the "p" and the "s," or you can rephrase your words so that the handle is described as, quite obviously, the teacup's handle.

Read:

Bilbo's nose was crooked and shaped like a teacup's handle.

or

Bilbo's nose was crooked and shaped like the handle of a teacup.

The second to last sentence in this paragraph is also grammatically incorrectly. The word "clinging" is the reason for this. The syntax for a sentence that you would use "clinging" in, would be to use a comma for a pause within the sentence.

Another thing that I suggest is that you replace "the child's" with her name (Jamie), simply because at the young and impressionable age that this story was written for, a young child is more likely to refer to a person as "her" rather than "Jamie." Implanting names more often in children's stories teaches the child to refer to people by their names more than by an indirect noun. You may have noticed that, in published children's books that you may have read or looked at, names of people and things are often repeated many times throughout the story for that very same reason. Very rarely are you going to see "that thing," "the object" or even a simple word of ambiguity as "it" in a children's book that's been published.

For example:

"His long thin fingers clinging tightly to a strand of the child's hair, he swung down her back hollering like Tarzan."

or

"His long thin fingers clinging tightly to a strand of the child's hair as he swung down her back, he hollered like Tarzan."

The difference between my sentences and yours, is the "ing" ending, which, in this case, is representing the participle of the past (though it's naturally a present-participle suffix).

Above are two options that you can use in place of your original sentence. Another example will be provided without using the word "clinging."

His long thin fingers clung tightly to a strand of Jamie's hair as he swung down her back, hollering like Tarzan.

or

His long thing fingers clung tightly to a strand of Jamie's hair as he swung down her back and hollered like Tarzan.

There are a couple of things that I don't like about the last sentence of your sixth paragraph. First of all, it's grammatically incorrect. To be grammatically correct, you need a comma after the word "himself."

Read:

Pleased with himself, he deserved a break.

The other thing that I don't like about this sentence, is that by saying that Bilbo deserves a break for being naughty, you are inadvertently saying that Bilbo has done well, and that this is how a child is to act if he wants to be rewarded. Bilbo may feel that he deserves a break, but he certainly hasn't truly earned one. You should make it a point to mention that.

Read:

Pleased with himself, he felt that he deserved a break. Being sneaky was hard work.

I added the second sentence, because the word "sneaky" is often a word that a child knows as something that he shouldn't be, therefore he knows that Bilbo has not truly done well, and that his break is only self-imposed and in no way earned on good merit.

Paragraph Seven:

The first sentence refers to Jamie as "the child" in the first reference to her. Another negative to continuously referring to the characters in a children's story with phrases like "the child" or "the small child" is that it can present a certain insecurity in the child that is comprehending the story. Ambiguity as far as names of characters gives the child an impression that children need names only necessity-based, and that they should only use names when using supreme references. It also takes away from the intimacy between characters in the story, telling the child that the story is being read to that personal relationships should be yardstick-distant.

Read:

Bilbo looked at Jamie as she lay on her bed.

The next two sentences I don't like as they are written at all. The first sentence refers to a subject that hasn't yet been established, and the second sentence is a fragmented sentence; all you have is a subject. My suggestion is that you combine the two sentences together so that they make sense, but also so that they aren't so complex for the child to understand. Also, the phrase "believes exists" was written in the present tense, though the rest of the story was written in the past tense.

The sight that Bilbo cherished the most was not only a child in trouble, but even more, he cherished the sight of a child in trouble for blaming someone that nobody believed existed.

The next sentence is incorrect in that is refers to a smirk that was never mentioned before, though it was stated as a continuation of a previous state; "still with a smirk spread across his face." Also, there aren't very many young children that know what a smirk is. You should stick to young vocabulary like "evil grin" or something of the like.

Also, you don't have to go into such detail. The phrase "smirk spread across hsi face" is superfluous. Children's stories and books are written, if you haven't noticed, with very little detail. Most of the time, the most description that a child is given is "the red ball" or "the spotted dog," this leaves the child much room for expansion of his ever-roaming imagination. The word "ventured" is also a bit of a grown-up word for this being a chidlren's story, not to mention that the word "towards" is grammatically incorrect; a mistake that is so often made. The word "towards" is not supposed to have an s at the end of it; the grammatically correct way to write it is "toward."

I think, as well, that the sentence after the mentioned sentence should be combined with the mentioned sentence, simply so that it won't be so cluttered.

Read:

[i}With an evil grin on his face, Bilbo walked toward Jamie's desk where he knew that there was always a snack laying around.

or

Grinning evilly from ear to ear, Bilbo walked toward Jamie's desk where he knew that there was always a snack laying around.

The next sentence indicates Bilbo's thoughts. This means that you should begin a new paragraph. Thoughts, however not as distinct as dialogue, should be treated like dialogue; thoughts begin a new paragraph, and if someone else thinks something, a new paragraph is started thus. I also think that instead of simply the single quotations, that you should italicize the text within the quotations to seperate it more.

The phrase "eyed off" looks strange to me as well. You may want to extract the word "off" or, even, change the whole phrase to be "looked at" for the child's sake. I don't think that, either, Bilbo would be looking at the freshly shaven pencils, but the fresh pencil shavings, as it would be blatantly obvious to any mother that there were bite-marks on her child's pencils that seem to have come from a matchstick sized man.

Read:

" 'Yummy, yummy, yummy,' Bilbo thought to himself as he looked at the fresh pencil shavings. "

Paragraph Eight:

The first sentence is more like a thought or a command rather than a sentence that goes with the story. I suggest that you place the sentence as Bilbo's thoughts, or make it an action that leads into the rest of the sentence by combining the first and second sentences of this paragraph. I also feel that you should take more steps for Bilbo's return to Jamie's ear. You have him going directly from the desk to a chair to her ear, but didn't mention him going to the chair in the first place. Also, you used the word "towards" twice in this paragraph.

Read:

Going back to work, Bilbo took a run off of the tall desk to the chair. With a mighty spring from the chair, he bounced toward Jaimie.

The word "precision" is a bit advanced for the level of reading that this story claims to be. The sentence itself doesn't make sense anyway, because it isn't with perfect precision that he aims, but that he aims with perfect precision, as to be perfectly precise isn't to aim but to be dead on, though he can aim perfectly precisely. You also make no mention of Bilbo actually re-entering Jamie's ear.

Read:

With great aim, Bilbo flung himself right into Jamie's ear.

Again, the use of the word "canals" in the next sentence is a bit advanced. Maybe the dark fort or something of that sort would work better.

Read:

The dark fort inside of Jamie's ear was a pleasing sight.

Paragraph Nine:

A minor change can be done with the second sentence of this paragraph. I suggest that you simply add "of Jamie's ear" at the end of the sentence.

Read:

“You want cookies.” Bilbo whispered down the long passage of Jamie's ear.

Paragraph Ten:

Since this is a children's story and should have some sort of moral, I think that you should mention the effort to do good. Also, you mention the word "small" a lot in this story because it is about a child. I don't think that you should commercialize the word so much, because you're making the characters, to the child that is reading/listening to the story, not-so-life-size, therefore unreal to the child.

Read:

“No” A Jamie's inner voice answered, trying to fight to do good. “I will get into trouble.”

Paragraph Eleven:

I think that you should try a different word for "persuade." The reason why I say that you should keep large language out of children's books, is that if a child is too busy trying to deduce the meaning of a word, he isn't going to understand the story because he will be distracted.

Also, don't be afraid to include your actions and your dialogue in the same sentence.

Read:

“No you won’t,” Bilbo said, “Trust me.”

or

"No you won't," Bilbo said, "I promise."

Paragraph Twelve:

I don't like how this sentence is. I just don't like it, it looks and sounds odd to me. There isn't, for instance, a mention as to why Bilbo has to steady himself or anything. Also, since Bilbo takes joy in causing mischief, he would smile or something to show his victory.

Read:

The sudden jolt of Jamie moving almost made Bilbo fall, but he smiled instead as Jamie moved toward the kitchen.

Paragraph Thirteen:

The phrase "the girl was arguing again" can be altered so that this paragraph can consist of one sentence. Also, "the girl" is so impersonal, it makes me think of the book I read called "A Child Called 'It'" about a boy whose mother called him "the boy" and, obviously, "it."

Read:

"But they're up so high," Jamie argued again.

Final Paragraph:

This paragraph needs a total re-write. Children's stories are supposed to have a moral not for the parents, but for the children themselves.

As it stands, the moral of your story is that parents shouldn't punish their kids when they do something wrong if they have someone to blame it on that may or may not exist.

You should have a moral that explains the values of doing good like "Just because the voice in your head says that it's okay, doesn't mean it makes it right. You should listen to the voice of your parents and do what's right before you make the decision to do wrong." Of course, the wording and phrasing would be different, but at least it doesn't teach children to blame others and think that they can get away with it.

I gave this piece a 1.5 rating because it needs a lot of work. The characters in this story were much too distant from one another for a children's story. You need to work on your language in your children's stories, because it is simply too complex. Think of it this way; if you had/have a five-year-old sibling, would he be able to understand every word in the story? Remember that description doesn't need to be minimal, but it shouldn't be imagination-intensive either. Also, make sure that the moral of your children's stories is a good one. As it is right now, the moral of the story isn't very good at all. When writing your story, be sure that the consequences of everything you write won't affect the young mind that is comprehending it in any harmful way, even in the slightest bit.

Forever be inspired.

Muse

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6
6
Review of Silent Tears  
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, Cherry,

This was a well-written song. I like the form that you chose to use for this piece, and the concept isn't a new one, but you have executed it with style and originality.

A couple of grammatical errors in this song were made. For instance, the last lines of your first and third stanzas end with a period, though they should end with a question mark, as a question had been asked.

Read:

Leave me alone
Can't you see I'm not that strong?


Also, in your first stanza, the phrase "silently crying but still playing a charade" is a bit off. Since using the word "but" implies a contrast or contradiction, though there is no contradiction because the phrases "silently crying" and "still playing a charade" compliment one another, you should substitute the word "and" for the word "but."

Read:

Silently crying and still playing a charade

You did the same sort of thing in your the last line of your second stanza. You used the word "but" though there was no contradiction or contrast between the second-to-last line and the last line. Since "and" would sound strange as a replacement of "but," you may want to consider using the word "still" or something of its likeness.

Read:

Not as it appears
Still you can't see.


In your third stanza, again you should replace the period after "strong" in the last line with a question mark, but you also missed a question mark completely in the second line.

Read:

Can't you see
With the things we do we're not the same?


In the fourth stanza, the change is the same as for the second; replacing the word "but" with the word "still" or something of its likeness.

Read:

Not as it appears
Still you can't see.


The fifth stanza holds the same general mistakes; misuse of punctuation.

Read:

Do you know
It's always raining?
Do you care
What I'm explaining?


Or if you want to keep the whole stanza lumped into one sentence:

Do you know
It's always raining,
Do you care
What I'm explaining?


And, of course, the sixth stanza (the chorus) can stand to take the same change as the second and fourth stanzas.

Other than those few, miniscule mistakes that didn't hinder the piece at all, I'd say that you have done a fair job with this song.

I'm giving this piece a 4.5 rating because I feel that this was a well-written song, with an easy-to-read flow, and a common yet uncommonly executed message. There were a couple of mistakes within the piece that allowed for it to be rated a 4.5 as opposed to a 5.0.

Forever be inspired.

Muse

This review was written by a member of the
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#1064538 by Not Available.
7
7
Review of Goddess Of Ruin  
Review by Muse
Rated: 18+ | (3.0)
Hello, thebrunette,

I like the repetition that you used in the story. Something tells me that writing about sex makes you slightly uncomfortable; simply the way you write about it says that. I could, however, be mistaken. It seems restrained, is all.

You have to work on your paragraphing. Most of your paragrahs can be divided into at least two, sometimes three maybe even four in some cases, smaller paragraphs. You should take the time to read through this piece and seriously consider where a paragraph should end, and where another should start.

If you think of each sentence as a thought, and each paragraph as a group of thoughts that directly relate to one another, you will be able to do so with ease.

I would like to mention that milk bottles are quite heavy-duty. If the husband of the wife were to punch the woman's abdomen until it broke, the woman would be dead. If she weren't dead, then she would be unconcious with the shock. Although, the milk bottle scene does remind me of a movie I watched called Cannibal Holocaust in which a cannibal kills his wife with a wooden spike; he shoves it up her vagina a good amount of times then strikes her head with it.

All else, it was well-written and I did enjoy the story.

Kee up with the sand paper and fork tunings.

Muse
8
8
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, J. A. Buxton,

Well-done. You have written yet another informative, comprehensive, and understandable article about the how-to's of google.

Now if only you could do the same for those pesky FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) forms, I would want to marry you, because if you can do that for those, imagine what you can do for tax forms.

One thing that I'm surprised you have failed to mention so far is the shortcut to refined research. For example, the use of quotation marks around a phrase in the regular search engine allows for the researcher to acquire only those sights that containt the exact phrase that lays within the quotations. Or, the and/or feature. If you write "and" within your search topic, you will find both topics correlating with one another (mothers and breastfeeding for example). Or or, you will find two separate topics that aren't related to one another. Sites about mothers, or sites about breastfeeding, for example.

In any case, I think that you should explain those in case a person doesn't want to take the extra few seconds to go to the Advanced section.

Again, bravo.

Forever be inspired.

Muse
9
9
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hello, J. A. Buxton,

This was another informative and interesting piece that concerns the exploration of google.

There wasn't too much that I saw that I didn't like or that I felt could've been written better.

In the Language section, maybe you could give examples of scenarios as to why a person may want to use Google Language. Since most, if not all, people that read this article read English as a primary language (if not then close to it), you may want to give other reasons why a writer or a researcher in general may want to use this feature.

Maybe a character in a story speaks another language, but the writer doesn't know how to speak the language that his character speaks. He will certainly want to know how to at least translate roughly into the language what he wants to say.

You may also want to mention the fact that online translators often only give a rough translation of phrases and sentences, so the wording won't be exact in the other language. I used to use translators to help me with my spanish homework, and whenever I translated phrases, the wording was always off, if only slightly sometimes.

Other than that, I think that you've done a superb job so far.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tunings.

Muse
10
10
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hello, J. A. Buxton,

I found your article to be informative, near-professional quality, and helpful to any writer that may want to adhere to your suggestions, especially if he is new to google or writing for that matter.

I like that you added references not only to how the features on google could be used in general, but how it could be used as far as writing purposes are concerned.

There were several times in the piece that you mentioned a particular feature, but didn't expand on it because you yourself have no use for it. My suggestion is that you, for this article's sake and for the sake of other writers, explore those features a bit further so that you can say "well, I discovered something that could be useful for this at such-and-such a place" or something along those lines.

One thing that I suggest is that you give more personal examples. You gave a personal example when it came to the maps feature in google, but none others in the article. Perhaps you could say, "for example, I researched Botanists that specialize in Adiantum for a character of mine."

Also, as far as the "more" section is concerned, I think that you should list and expand your personal favourites as far as that section goes, so that the reader knows what your preferences are, and why, even--so that he might better know which to choose for himself.

Well-done, in all else.

Forever be inspired.

Muse
11
11
Review of What We Know...  
Review by Muse
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hello, Judah,

I delighted in this poem. It was written linguistically with poetic form. It has, like many good poems, a beginning, a middle and an end.

It's not confusing.

I enjoy that this poem has no real set rhythm; it has slight bounce, and it flows strangely, but that works for this poem.

You described quite well a place that we have all been in. Maybe our liberty wasn't or isn't alcoholism, but everyone has something that becomes a masochistic tendency.

My self-absorbed asceticism,
Transforms into
Masochistic alcoholism.


My favourite lines in this poem.

Forever be inspired.

Muse
12
12
Review of Splintered  
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hello, Judah,

I enjoyed this poem quite thoroughly. It's what I like to call a "stream of consciousness" poem in which you write about one thing for which you think of something that refers to it and so on.

Your strongest stanzas, content wise, are your final two; they are powerful and very poetically written.

I would have to say that your weakest stanza is, contrastingly, your second stanza.

I do think, however, that your second-to-last stanza needs a little bit of work. The punctuation is off and it's confusing the way that it is. I'll add in my suggested punctuation and you can take it for what it's worth. I also think that "cerulean" should be capitalized in the poem.

I live through cerulean dreams;
Pasted together from melted glass.
Ancient letters and sacred ballads
Breathe through me
From an immortal past.

Beliefs breed scattered rants,
Illusory ideals become rhyme.
I fall...and I fall again-
But I rise like the moon
Every time.


This stanza, I simply had to quote. It's strong, to-the-point, final, and everlasting at the same time. It puts faith not only in the power of belief, but also in the writer; you.

Well-done.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tunings.

Muse
13
13
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hello, Someone Special,

This is a cute poem. I can see it in a Halmark card somewhere, given to thousands of people across the world because it has the perfect message that a lover wants to convey.

This is also a poem written by someone who is still a naïveté. Maybe this is an older poem that you have written, or maybe you are still young and have just begun to write. Whichever the case, it is a well-written poem for the age in which it has been written.

Please don't confuse naïveté with being talentless, as that is not what I meant at all. There is much room for growth in all of us. Maybe you will consider writing a poem that is beautiful instead of cute, a poem that is melancholy instead of sad, etcetera.

Also note that you don't need punctuation after every line. When you have too much punctuation, a poem either stutters or bounces. This poem bounces exhuberantly. I suggest that you try to keep the punctuation to at most two commas and a period, but try for only one comma and a period.

I'll punctuate the first stanza as an example

I reached into the heavens
and picked you out a star--
one that beamed with innocence;
the prettiest by far.


All-in-all, it's a nice poem.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tunings.

Muse
14
14
Review of Wisdom  
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hello, Tara,

You have written this poem with good poetic writing and flow, for the most part. I like the message that you have portrayed with this poem; wisdom can only be gained if we share it.

There are a few things that you should work on with this poem. Your punctuation needs a little work, and you sometimes placed too many syllables in a line, which slandered the flow a bit.

The first stanza is fine as far as syllables go, but I think that there should be a comma after "more," so that the reader knows where to pause. Otherwise, that stanza is read like a sentence all of the way to the end of it.

As the wave of perplexity
Engulfs my soul once more,
I’m left here wondering
What I’m fighting for.


In your second stanza, you have extra syllables not in your second line, believe it or not, but in your last line. In fact, it is only one syllable that is superfluous. I think that you should change the word "become" to "grow," because that will annihilate that extra syllable while keeping the meaning and context of the poem. I also think that the word "grow" fits in better, because it complements the following word "more." The second-to-last line reads funnily as well.. Here, I suggest that "growing" be replaced with "becoming," and that you get rid of the word "more" all to-gether.

Is becoming regular
As I grow more aware.


Your third stanza is fine, aside from a slight mis-punctuation in the last line. Since "or has my thinking gone amiss" is a question, the end of the line should hold a question mark, as opposed to a period.

Or has my thinking gone amiss?

The fourth stanza is a little forced in the last line. I suggest that you simply slap a semi-colon after the word "wisdom" and get rid of the comma in the last line by re-phrasing.

That share their wisdom;
within which a mystery arrives.


You fifth stanza needs punctuation and syllable-work. I've noticed that you have begun several of your lines with the word "and." You often don't need that word, especially-so in a poem. And's are often replaced with commas or semi-colons, actually. For example, if you place a semi-colon after the word "inspiration," then you don't need the word "and" in the third line. You will therefore rid yourself of the extra syllable in the third line.

Comes inspiration;
to work through our questions
Is our obligation.


Another thing that you can do is end the sentence all to-gether after the second line, and begin a new sentence at the third line.

But with the confusion
comes inspiration.
To work through our questions
is our obligation.



"So amidst the state of wonder,
Amidst the frustration and tears
Comes wisdom we will share
For the rest of our years."

This last stanza is well-written--I don't see anything that could or should be changed. It brings a nice, neat, and hope-giving conclusion to your poem.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tunings.

Muse
15
15
Review of Widow's Rain  
Review by Muse
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hello, Crissy,

I enjoyed your poem for the most part, but I feel that if there was punctuation to create a better flow, I would have enjoyed the poem more thoroughly. As it stands, I think that this poem is good, but needs work to become great.

I suggest that you review this poem yourself so that you may place a period, comma, or semi-colon wherever you feel that a pause is necessary.

For example,
Drip
Drop.
Watch the rain
Falling
Endlessly, aimlessly;
Illuminated by the light
Pegs of steel.
Like the fourth of July.
Thoughts wandering;
Happy thoughts.
Content,
Just for
A moment,
Then it stops.
My moment is gone.
He's calling my name;
Time to face
My contender
Again


This is where I personally would place the punctuation, as that is how I read the poem, but you are obviously the one who chooses where, and if they shall be used.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tunings.

Muse
16
16
Review of Golden  
Review by Muse
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hello, J. A. Powell,

Overall, I have a good feeling about this piece; it's short and to-the-point, but also point elusive. There is no easy way to touch upon a controversial subject, and sometimes it is best to do just so; simply touch upon it. This was a relatively well-written piece.

One quip that I have with your form is the use of double-spacing. I think that it would be best to use indentations, and be rid of the double-spacing instead.

"No, no, not yet," she whispered, though they had both agreed.
Since there was no mention of an agreement being made in this story, you may want to add an indication that this happened prior to the beginning of the story.
Suggestion:"No, no, not yet," she whispered, though they had both previously agreed.

"Please, it must be this way. I can't endure pain any longer. We both know nothing ends now. You're my forever girl, and I will be waiting when you choose to follow."
There are three things that I see that could be changed with this particular bit. First of all, the phrase "I can't endure pain" seems off. If you add the word "the" between "endure" and "pain," the sentence will read better. Also, since "forever girl" is being suggested as a proper pronoun, you may consider capitalizing the first letter of each word. Also, when the man spoke that he would be waiting for his wife, you may want to add "for you" after the word "waiting."
Suggestion:"Please, it must be this way. I can't endure the pain any longer. We both know nothing ends now. You're my Forever Girl, and I will be waiting for you when you choose to follow.

He nodded again and the doctor injected relief.
Here, I would suggest that instead of "relief," you insert the actual name of the solution that is used in such euthanatizing situations. One solution that may be given is 5 grams of Thiopental sodium. Another might be 100 milligrams of Pancuronium bromide, and the third solution that one might be given is 100 milliequivalents of Potassium chloride.
He nodded again and the doctor injected five grams of Thiopental sodium.
or
He nodded again and the doctor injected 100 milligrams of Pancuronium bromide.
or
He nodded again and the doctor injected 100 milliequivalents of Potassium chloride.
My personal suggestioul would be the Thiopental sodium; it's much quicker and to the reader, looks better on paper.

"Amazing," he began...
In this sentence, it seems as though the ellipsis is incorrectly placed. It would seem that instead of the ellipsis being at the end of the sentence, it should directly proceed the word "amazing," as it is the word "amazing" that is part of the thought that is unfinished, not the phrase "he began."
Suggestion:"Amazing..." he began.

"Fifty years," she said. "Love of my life, love of my life,” and after a final kiss, reached to close his eyes. Then she laid her hand upon his heart, now still.
I'm not sure that I like the repetition of the phrase "love of my life." Also, to give the piece a tone of more finality, you may want to give a small action to the wife. For example, maybe she will leave the room and look back with a small, peaceful smile at the man that lays on the hospital cot; such is simply a suggestion for thought. I do think that you should replace the last comma of your piece "his heart, now still" with a semi-colon. Also, the way that you have written the beginning of the last paragraph, the second sentence is a continuation of the first sentence, so you should leave it as such.
Suggestion:"Fifty years," she said, "love of my life," and after a final kiss, reached to close his eyes. Then she laid her hand upon his heart; now still.

Thank-you for all of your work and effort. I look forward to reading more from you in the future.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tuning.

Muse
17
17
Review by Muse
Rated: 13+ | (2.5)
Hello, WritingOnPaper,

I do not agree with the content of your piece. My opinion aside, I would start this review with a comment about the overall tone of your piece.

This piece has an unfortunate striking assimilation to an attack of a certain group of people (namely pubescent girls who are experiencing life as pubescent girls do). When you disagree with the course of action that a certain person or group of people have taken, you want to try your best to avoid offending them, as offending them and attacking them is going to push them further away from your point of view.

Having made that statement, I will continue to your piece. I will provide an objective point of view of the mechanics of your piece and shall comment no further on the content of your opinion piece.

Paragraph One
You wander on people’s online journals, webpages and info’s on AOL and young girls from the ages of 11-17 are hopelessly in love with their boyfriends.
You have a couple of grammatical errors in this sentence. They are minour, but grammatical errors are grammatical errors. For example, your third word 'on' should be 'upon' or 'onto.' My person suggestion would be 'onto.' You also may want to consider revising 'info's' into 'profile' or 'biography.' Also, the phrase "ages of 11-17" would be something that you would write informally, not formally. My suggestion is to change it to "ages from eleven to seventeen". My personal preference is to write the numbers out, but such would be left up to you to choose. I also have an option for your wording, so that your sentence isn't quite so bulky. I won't obligate an explaination of this, however, and will simply re-write the sentence as an example of what you could do with the sentence.
You wander onto people’s online journals, webpages and AOL profiles to find that young girls whose ages are from eleven to seventeen are "hopelessly" in love with their boy-friends.
I will point out that I added the quotations to the word 'hopelessly,' because your whole piece is about the skepticality that you hold toward this unconditional love, thus you should illustrate such any chance you are given.

I find it funny.
You are discredited with this sentence, because judging by the tone of this piece, you do not find the fact funny. My suggestion is that you extract this sentence al-together.

Paragraph Two
Looking upon a 13 year old’s AOL info it says Adam 3-4-6 I love you, baby.
The grammar of this sentence needs to be corrected. Most of the grammatical corrections do not need explaination. One thing that I will state, is that when you are directly quoting from another source, you need quotations. Also, your wording has caused the sentence to be overloaded (even though it is a relatively short sentence).
Suggestion: Upon looking at a thirteen-year-old girl's AOL profile, I see that it reads; "Adam 3-4-6 I love you, baby."

And do these young girls know that being boyfriend and girlfriend means that you must hang out with your significant other, not just see them at school?
First of all, you should avoid beginning a sentence with a compound word (and, but, etcetera). This is a no-no in the literary world. Also, your added phrase "not just see them at school" is like adding a tail to a human; it simply doesn't fit. We don't have any chairs that accomodate for tails.
Suggestion: Do these young girls know that being boyfriend-and-girlfriend means that they must hang out with their significant others outside of school?

Paragraph Three
I don’t blame these young girls, whenever I dated someone I always ‘loved’ them within the minute of ‘dating’ them. But I slowly realized that that’s a bunch of s***, you don’t love someone that quickly. Two week realtionships aren’t special, they happen everyday. Don’t think your unique because you successfully dated someone longer for a day.
Eek. This paragraph completely disembowels your credibility. The first mistake you made is that you made a hypocrite of yourself. You stated that you yourself did the very same thing that you are berating these females for. In the same paragraph, you explained that you "grew out of it." I realize that I stated that I would not make any more comments on the content of your piece, but this right here is a big no-no. Also, this paragraph is looking a lot like an attack. Another big no-no. Big. You also made some grammatical errors. Your first comma should be a semi-colon. Also, you started another sentence with a compound. Your single quotes should be double quotes. Also, who is to say that because you don't love someone so quickly, that someone else can't love another so quickly? My suggestion is that you change your phrase "you don't love someone that quickly" and make it a statement of your opinion instead of a "fact." In addition, you spelled relationships wrong, though I do believe that it was a Freudian mistake.
Suggestion:I don’t blame these young girls; whenever I dated someone when I was younger, I always "loved" them within the first minute of "dating" them, but I slowly realized that that’s a bunch of s***. You shouldn't love someone that quickly. Two-week realtionships aren’t special, they happen every day. Don’t think that your unique because you successfully dated someone longer for a day.
I'd like to add that you might want to, as well, extract the last sentence of that paragraph, as it is highly offensive to the reader.

Paragraph Four
Possibly be hit by a bus or a train.
This is a fragmented sentence and you should consider revising it. I will provide an example based on your basic tone and writing content that you have provided thus far in this piece.
They should probably be hit by a bus or a train.
or
They will probably be hit by a bus or a train.
or
I wish that they would be hit by a bus or train.

All girls have unfortunately done this when they were younger, some girls have out grown it and realized the true meaning of love.
You made another big no-no. You grouped all people of a certain group to-gether. If you haven't all-ready, then you will recieve e-mails, comments, or reviews by females that oppose to the fact that you said that all females have done as you say that they have. You should never make generalizations, it is highly offensive and often inaccurate. Also, you made a couple of grammatical mistakes.
Suggestion: Many girls have, unfortunately, done this when they were younger. Some girls have out-grown it and realized the true meaning of love.


Love isn’t something you throw around.
First of all, you should start a new paragraph here. Second of all, you are stating as if this is a fact again, as opposed to make it an opinion. You should keep in mind that not everyone shares your opinion, so you cannot assume that your opinion is a fact. Therefore, you should always state your opinion as an opinion.
Suggestion:Love shouldn't be something that you throw around.
or
Love isn't something that should be thrown around.
or
Love isn't something that you should throw around.

It should be something you treasure and give to someone you think deserves it.
I don't see anything wrong with this sentence, I just wanted to give you an example in something that you have written, unedited, of something that you have an opinion about, and have stated as your opinion. This is the correct way to state an opinion.

For every guy you say your in love with that doesn’t save anything for the guy you really will love someday.
There are some grammatical errors; nothing that I haven't explained previously in this review, so I am just going to write my suggested fix and you can look at what is wrong based on what I re-write.
For every guy you say that you're in love with, you save less for the guy you will truly love some day.


The ‘I love you’s’ will have exploded out of your mouth so many times it won’t feel different or real when you tell the guy your getting married too or the guy you’ve been dating for seven years you love them.
This is, for one, a run-on sentence. You misused the word "too," as you don't get married too, you get married 'to.'
Suggestion:The "I love you's" will have exploded out of your moust so many times, they will have become meaningless. When the time comes around that you say it to the guy that you marry or have been dating for seven years, it won't feel real when you say that you love them.

So to any of you young ladies who have been dating a guy since last week or two hours ago and have already been writing Mrs. inserttheguyyourdatingslastnamehere all over your notebook please look up the word love and don’t throw it around like it’s just another word.
You missed a comma after 'notebook,' and 'in the dictionary' after "look up the word love." Also, instead of running the words together to make one, make use of parentheses.
So to any of you young ladies who have been dating a guy since last week or two hours ago and have already been writing Mrs. (insert the last name of the guy that you're dating here) all over your notebook, please look up the word "love" in the dictionary, and don't throw it around like it's just another word.

Over all, your piece was written slightly less than mediocrely. If you take some or all of my suggestions and apply them to other pieces that you have written and will write, I think that you will improve as a writer. You do have the general talent and I see much potential in your writing skills.

That having been said, I would like to make an aside. This piece is not objective enough to be an essay. This piece is an attack, verging on a rant at certain places. You may, actually, want to enter this piece into Satuanaway's Angry Rant Contest.

Some points to remember are:
1. Avoid run-on and fragmented sentences
2. Avoid beginning sentences with compound words
3. Avoid attacking and ultimately offending the reader
4. Avoid making your views/opinions/beliefs a fact

Things to work on:
1. Try to make sure that you word your sentences so that they are not bulky, but also so that they have filling to them
2. Grammatical correctitude
3. Stating your opinion as an opinion
4. Keeping an open mind to others' emotions and ideals

For all of those who need the dictionary definition of love, an exerpt from dictionary.com's definition is:

"A deep, tender, ineffable feeling of affection and solicitude toward a person, such as that arising from kinship, recognition of attractive qualities, or a sense of underlying oneness."

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tuning.

Muse
18
18
Review of SLIPPING AWAY  
Review by Muse
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hello, Countrymom,

This is a touching poem and does well in allowing the reader passage into a hurtful part of your life.

As a reader, thank-you.

Your first stanza is pretty well written (as is the rest of your poem), but I do have a suggestion for the last line that it carries.

The last line, reading "not the past when I was a wife", feels a bit rushed to me. I suggest adding a comma to it where it would make sense to do.

For example "not the past, when I was a wife."

Also, when you wrote "as I rebuild a shattered life", it seems like you're building a life shattered, as opposed to rebuilding a whole life. Then again, I could be reading too far into it.

You can disregard that comment, but keep it in the back of your mind in case you see it as well. If you see it too, my suggestion would be to somehow incorporate the word 'once' (i.e. once shattered life).

I don't see any majour problems with your second stanza. You do have a syllabic discrepancy in the first line, however. There is one too many syllable. Try "It's taken so many years" if you will. Other than that, I really don't have any problems with your second stanza.

Your third stanza, again, all I see is a small discrepancy, which lays in the last line. The 'although' is too bulky for the line, and the 'don't' is too thin. You have the correct amount of syllables, but you can reword your last line to make the syllables run more smoothly, and to fully utilize the use of your words.

Example "A simple wreath laid to-day
brought me the final blow,
for I must keep on living
though how I do not know."

All-in-all, I like that third stanza. It has punch, and it provides that shock for the reader that either makes or breaks the poem. The realisation (for me) that you weren't writing about divorce after all was a nice added touch.

"Still the past is slipping away;
the sun is setting in the West,
loving you becomes a memory -
and I must forget the rest."

I like this last stanza as well. The only suggestion that I have for it is to change 'is slipping' to 'slips,' but it works either way. Actually if you do make the change, it would have to have another syllable, so if you choose to go with said option, I'll provide an example.

Example: "Still, the past, it slips away;"

Over all, a great, touching poem. It's a little rough around the edges and such, but nothing a little sand paper won't smoothen.

Now I have an aside for you. Moving on from losing a loved one isn't about forgetting, but remembering. I suppose it's easier just to forget, and it is. I'm sure you know how to cope with the loss, and I am not trying to coach you, but it hurts less in the long run to remember the rest, as opposed to forgetting it. Less regrets that way.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tuning.

Muse
19
19
Review of Re-membering  
Review by Muse
Rated: 13+ | (3.5)
This is a simple, "cutesy" poem. The length is encouraging: some poets cannot write a poem and think it finished that is short. The true is for the opposite; some poets simply cannot write or finish a longer versed poem. That having been said, I applaud you for your work.

I commend your creative use of the phrase "the mind is a terrible thing to waste."

I do, however, have a few suggestions for you.

First of all, you want to refrain from using the word "the" when referring to a subject for the first time. You referred to the squirrel as "THE" squirrel. This squirrel isn't THE squirrel to the reader. It hasn't been mandated as THE SQUIRREL of GOD. To the reader, it's just a squirrel that's being fed upon by a crow. My suggestion? Change 'the' into 'a.'

Second of all, your second-to-last line is a bit scratchy. There are too many syllables in it for the pace and rhythm of your poem. You need to get rid of one or a couple of syllables. I'll write and example, and you can choose to use it or find another...or leave it, of course, as you are the author and probably have your reasons.

Example: "I'll leave nothing here--not even a taste."

The last line caught me as strange, as well. Should the last line not be in quotations along with the line that preceeds it? The last line seems more like a thought or a phrase of dialogue, while previously in your poem, anything that wasn't in quotations was in the third person. You may want to consider including the last line in the set of quotations, or rewrite it in such a way that it would be in the third person form.

Example:
"I'll leave nothing here - not even a taste.
Oh well, a mind is a terrible thing to waste."

or

"I'll leave nothing here - not even a taste."
Oh well, he thought, a mind is a terrible thing to waste.

One last thing that struck me was your spacing. I am wondering the purpose of the double spacing in your poem. It isn't truly needed and makes each line look like a separate entity in itself. What you must understand about poetry, is that poetry isn't just the words that you use, but it is also the use of spaces, lines, shape, etcetera.

If you're afraid that the poem looks too short if it's kept double-spaced, don't be. The poem is fine the way it is as far as length goes.

Thank-you for the write.

Keep up with the sand paper and fork tunings.

Muse
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