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Printed from http://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/purplesunday
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1,437 Public Reviews Given
Review Style
I tend to write in depth reviews, discussing all aspects I feel need addressing. I am always positive and encouraging, but I'm also honest. If I feel something needs looking at, I will mention it.
I'm good at...
I'm a grammar and punctuation fiend. It is always one of the first things that strikes me about a piece of writing. I'm also good at offering suggestions to back up any comments I make. I'm always happy to re-review once changes have been made.
Favorite Genres
Dark or emotional poetry. The same goes for short stories; I like writing that makes me feel something. I love to read mysteries, thrillers, romance. I'll give anything a go, though.
Least Favorite Genres
Steampunk, sci-if.
Favorite Item Types
Emotional or dark poetry. Heart warming short stories.
Least Favorite Item Types
Chapters from the middle of books.
Public Reviews
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1
1
for entry "The Beast
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi Lilli ☕ ,

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. It is also part of "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: I have just entered the same round as you for this contest, so it was really interesting to see the different directions we took with the prompt. Honestly, yours is much better than mine! I love the darkness and the way you describe this person's effect on you as like trapping you in quicksand. One thing ... I say "the person", but I think you are actually speaking directly to your depression, aren't you? (I could have that wrong.)

Voice/Tone: This is a sad poem which I can relate to a lot. Both in terms of depression, and in terms of a monster luring you into his lair. The last line is the most upsetting: "My sad fate sealed." That brought a lump to my throat. And, it's definitely not how it has to be. Nothing is written in stone. We can escape (people, easier than our own minds).

Mechanics: Just one thing ... I would place a period at the end. Normally, I don't worry too much about doing that in poetry. But, as you have punctuated the other lines, I would include the last one in that.

My Favourite Part: I really love the personal voice of the narrator speaking to whoever (or whatever) is pulling them down. It comes across really well. Also, the quicksand metaphor is a great one. It makes me think of someone being pulled and sucked deeper down into their own mind, arms flailing, shouting for help. But with no one to save them but themselves. As I said, I may have read this wrong, but that's how it makes me feel.

This is a sad, but beautifully written poem. It's so relatable, and I love the direction you took the prompt. Great work, Lilli!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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2
2
for entry "24 Syllable Forum
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi Tinker ,

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. It is also part of "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: This poem is perfect. Firstly, the way you have centred it looks really nice. Then, the actual words ... You do a great job of summing up what the 24 Syllables contest is about. It does take a lot of discipline and hard work to make the poem exactly the right amount of syllables. Personally, I find it much easier to write 24 lines than 24 syllables.

Rhythm: Although only four lines, there is a fantastic rhythm. Your use of enjambment between every line is a clever way of maintaining this rhythm. It flows, and it's easy to read.

My Favourite Part: I love the last line! The internal rhyme of the short e in stretch and condense is pure brilliance. It makes the poem sound fantastic.

I have nothing that could make this poem any better. It's perfect just as it is. I know this is purely aesthetical, but I love the colour you chose for the word regale. It looks pretty. Which, I know, isn't the point of the poem, but it does help to make it look appealing. Great work, Tink.

Keep writing!

Choconut

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3
3
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi amy-Looking Forward ,

I am reviewing this article, as per your request. The review is in affiliation with "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group.

The first thing to say is I loved reading this. It is such a positive, confident message to send to your Facebook group, and it's really encouraging to read. It left me feeling happy for you. You let us know that starting your own business is not easy, but it is possible, especially when you have fantastic support.

I only have a few minor suggestions ...

"only one word sums up the year-Growth." - I would use a colon instead of a hyphen.

"I am a much better person now." - Better is quite a generic word. It's not massively descriptive. I would say something like, "I am a much more confident person now."

"I have learned that my needs are as important as the needs of my boyfriend and I as a couple." - It should be "boyfriend and me."

That's really it. I think this is a great motivator for your group, and I think you have the content spot-on. Nicely done!

Choconut

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4
4
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi Prosperous Snow Globe

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. It is also part of "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: Firstly, what a lovely song, and what a beautiful building. After listening to the song, I think your poem fits perfectly. It's a pleasure to read and has a wonderful rhythm that makes it sound a little like a song, in itself.

Voice/Tone: The voice is emotional. It is filled with love and awe, and your faith comes clearly across in it. I love how you compare this fantastic building to a woman. You refer to it as "She" which makes sense because her name is 'The Queen of Carmel.'

Mechanics: This poem is free verse, although there are some end-of-line rhymes. These work so well, adding to the fantastic rhythm.

My Favourite Part: The last verse is fabulous! I love, "Robed in white, / she beckons / to humanity." That description of "robed in white," in particular, is great. It sounds regal and flowing, and it suits the grandeur of the building. I also love your description of her as being "surrounded by verdant gardens." It sounds lush and pretty. Also, it is peaceful.

I have no suggestions for this poem, Neva. I think it's absolutely beautiful. It's great to see the strength of your faith, and you have written a great tribute to an important place. Great writing!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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5
5
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi Schnujo ,

This review is in affiliation with "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. It is part of your Whisky Liqueur package which Hannah ♫♥♫ gifted to you.

I appreciate you said I can give your reviews to Xarthin , but you are so generous with gifting people via The Contest Challenge, so I wanted to write you one review for this challenge.

The first thing to mention is your generosity. The prizes you give to your participants are awesome. Like, unbelievably awesome. When I first started to take part in this challenge two years ago, I never imagined you would make it possible for so many to continue with their WDC membership. I really don't think you know how much you mean to us.

But, enough of the soppy lovefest! *Laugh* Aside from the prizes, the actual challenge itself is fab. You always have a wide variety of contests for us on offer. There is always at least one poetry and one short stories contest. So, really, there's no excuse to not take part, is there? Plus, you allow us to catch up with months we have missed, which is a lifesaver. I should know. I think I wrote seventeen entries in a couple of months last year.

Your forum page has everything it needs. I'm glad you have dropnotes for all the competitors and contests for previous months. It made it really easy for me to see which months I had to complete when I caught up.

You run this smoothly, and you advertise it regularly so the whole of WDC has the chance to join in. There are a lot of people currently taking part, and you always have high participation, so you know you're doing something right.

I love this challenge, Jody. It's a great idea that is unique on this site. Your forum page is colourful, with a great image. It makes it even more appealing.

Thank you for running this. Thank you for your generosity!

Choconut

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6
6
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi Patrece~So busy!!! ,

I am happy to be reviewing you on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is your final Orange Creme review.

Please remember these are only my opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first thoughts: I was intrigued by your title. I had to read to find out what Karlee's Christmas miracle would be. And I'm so glad I did. This is a beautiful story that brought a lump to my throat in more than one place. It's a great idea for a story, and I really want Karlee to get her permanent parents to love her.

Plot: Karlee is in a group children's home as Christmas approaches. She doesn't have any friends and confides everything in her diary. I love how you say, when describing the diary, "The treasured, discolored, empty pages were her always accepting best friend." I could really relate to that. I wrote in my diary every day from the age of thirteen until my mid-twenties. I have tomes of my writing! But, I could really understand how Karlee could tell her diary all her thoughts and feelings. When the story moves on to Karlee's letter to Santa, it feels like there's a shift in the plot. It's no longer just about this unhappy, lonely girl. Now, it's about a childless couple who could make her dream come true. There is hope, and I'm so glad about that.

Characters: I was surprised at how young Karlee is. I thought she was approaching teenage years, but then in her letter she says she's only six. I pictured that poor, innocent child who has endured and witnessed horrific abuse. All she wants is to be loved, and it's heartbreaking. You did a fantastic job of writing Karlee's character. She is so sympathetic, and your readers will really care about her. I also have to mention Maria. She's a great character. Moved by the letter, she becomes Karlee's own Santa, in a way.

Grammar: Just a couple of tiny points ... "She sneaked around the side of the big yellow house, and made a run for the post office ..." There shouldn't be a comma after house. Also, "'Okay you guys ...'" There should be a comma after Okay.

What I liked: The heart. This story is written with such warmth. Karlee is a wonderful character, and I know everyone who reads this will feel protective of her. She is so vulnerable, and yet, in the end, she has hope of a happy life. I love the end. You show Karlee having visitors on Christmas morning, and finally, this little girl has hope. I love that. It's a real feel-good story.

Suggestions: "Of course Page was understanding; she always was with Karlee." I would delete the second part of this sentence. It isn't necessary because you've already told us all about Karlee's relationship with her diary. Also, this is possibly me being picky, but Karlee's letter has XOXO at the end. While this is a common thing for older kids, teenagers, adults to write, I'm not sure a six-year-old would do that. Some kisses maybe, but not XOXO.

This story is really emotional. You have written some great characters and a brilliant plot. I was hooked from the start, and I stayed hooked all the way through. Great writing!

Most importantly, keep writing!

Choconut


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7
7
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi Patrece~So busy!!! ,

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is the first review from a (very old!) Orange Creme package in my Chocolate Emporium.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: I love this poem! It had me laughing right from the beginning. I love the language you use and the way it all comes together to make a really fluid, funny poem. The memories you share are fabulous. The part where your son pees in his eye is hilarious! I did wonder what happened to the diapers, though — why they were all gone.

Voice/Tone: I love your voice in this poem. Because it's true, and you've written about your own son, the love shines through. The poem is warm and rich, and the storyteller tone at the beginning really does sound as though you are speaking directly to me. It's wonderful.

Mechanics: This poem isn't any set form, but there are four eight-line verses, all with an abcbdbeb rhyme scheme. This rhyme is perfect. It gives a great rhythm to the verse, plus it highlights the funny parts really nicely.

My Favourite Part: It's hard to choose one part, as I think the whole poem is fantastic. However, I do love it when your son says he "burped out his butt." That's brilliant! Also, the last line is a killer one! I laughed so much when I read it: "and looked down to see he just peed in his eye!" There are some things I'm glad I will never experience due to my gender, and that is one of them.

Great writing, Patrece. This poem has everything: warmth, humour, rhythm, and rhyme. Perfect. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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8
8
Review of Nighttime  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
Hi Dragon is Thesis writing

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is your final Chocolate Truffle review.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: This is a great image of a dark, starless night with ghouls and ghosts roaming the land. I imagine it around Halloween time, and I see that is when you wrote it. It certainly feels creepy.

Voice/Tone: The voice is restless and slightly afraid. You create that with the images of the wind howling and rusty hinges creaking. They make us shiver in anticipation of the monsters lurking outside.

Mechanics: This is free verse, which I love. However, if I were you, I would take out "The" at the beginning of the first and third lines. Using "the" makes the lines a little less poetic in their phrasing. If you take it out, it sounds a little better.

Rhythm: There is a great rhythm in this poem. Because it is so short, it reads like three statements, each one pulling the reader further into the dark night.

My Favourite Part: The last line is great: "I am sleepless." As would I be, in the same situation. I hate those completely black nights where every sound could be some kind of monster coming to get you.

This is a great, little poem. It really does give me a shiver down my spine. Great writing, Dragon. I really enjoyed this.

Keep writing!

Choconut

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9
9
Review of When it Drizzles  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi Dragon is Thesis writing ,

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is your second Chocolate Truffle review.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: Wow. This is fantastic! Immediately, when I looked at this poem, I thought it was so clever. I love visual poetry. I know it's really difficult to get right because I've tried (and failed!) before, so I'm always impressed when I come across a poem like this one.

Voice/Tone: The tone of this poem is warm and friendly. You describe the sounds of the rain outside your window, then add that you fall asleep in your warm bed. There's a certain cosiness and comfort that makes the reader feel wrapped up and snug. And who doesn't like to feel that way?

Mechanics: The raindrop formation is perfect. It just looks so good, and I really am in awe of it. But, not only that, you use perfect words to describe the rain falling outside. Using words like "splish" and "splash" is a great use of onomatopoeia. It makes the reader feel the rain as they read.

My Favourite Part: The visuals! I just love the blue raindrop. But, also the many words that sound like rain which you have used to draw your reader closer.

Again, wow. I love this poem. It's clever, and it looks great. Really nicely written.

Keep writing!

Choconut

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10
10
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
Hi Dragon is Thesis writing ,

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is the first of your Chocolate Truffle reviews which Schnujo recently gifted you.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: This poem made me feel sad. It's very relatable for anyone who has lost someone they love. I love how simple the poem is; it's not all long words and imagery. It's all about the emotion, and that makes it really appealing.

Voice/Tone: I'm guessing this poem is written from the heart because it feels as though it's packed with genuine emotion. The lines which read, "and now everywhere I turn, / you're there." make me feel so sad. That feeling of being reminded of the person in everything you do is so painful. You've described it really well. The whole time I was reading this, your voice sounded so unsure, so small. Not in a bad way. I think it's because you open yourself up so much. You make yourself vulnerable, which is a brave thing to do.

Mechanics: This is free verse, which I love. That one line on its own — "But you're not" — is stark and sums up the whole poem perfectly. It highlights the loneliness of your feelings by standing alone on the page.

My Favourite Part: The last line is so sad. "Do you think of me?" That question is so common after we lose a friend or lover. It's incredibly relatable. But, actually, I think the whole poem comes together really well. It's nicely done.

Suggestions: Just one tiny suggestion ... I would delete "ago" from the first line. I don't think it's necessary.

This is a beautiful, sad poem. If it is based on your own experience, I hope things are easier now. Great writing!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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11
11
Review of A Dream  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi Prosperous Snow Globe ,

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is your final Chocolate Truffle review.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: This is another poetic form I've never encountered before. And, I have to say, it's fantastic. Your poem is fantastic! I love everything about it, from the rhyme, to how it looks on the page, to the message at its heart. It's truly a fabulous piece of writing.

Voice/Tone: I have a feeling this is written from the heart. It sounds as though it's written by someone who cares a lot about what is going on in the world at the moment. I love your optimism that peace can be achieved if we all work together. You're right. It really is that simple, and I can never understand why so many people have so much hatred inside them. It's needless, and I wish people could realise that. Maybe, this poem will help some to understand.

Mechanics: This is a Retrac, a specific poem with both a set syllabic count and a set end-of-line rhyme scheme. This all works together to make the poem flow so beautifully. The rhythm and pace are spot-on. It's really well-written. The visuals that centring the poem give also work really nicely. It looks great.

My Favourite Part: The message. I love the heart with which this was written. And it's so clever, as well. It looks fab. It ticks all the boxes. The last two lines, though, are my favourites: "Peace the team! / No dream!"

You've probably realised I'm a big fan of this poem. It's another form I'm going to have to try out, although, I think it's probably quite tricky to get right. You have made it look smooth and easy to write, but with so many rules, I know it can't be. Great writing!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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12
12
Review of Valentine Tears  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi Prosperous Snow Globe

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is your second Chocolate Truffle review.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: This is a beautiful, sweet tribute to a lost love. As I started to read it, I loved the image of the red, heart-shaped box with sweet chocolate inside. This is a classic symbol of romance, and I really liked the way you say it was intended to open your "heart's locks." I love that image! Also, the sentiment. At this point, the poem feels like a feel-good, romantic poem. So, as I read on, and discovered the lover has died, I felt really sad. It sounds as though the narrator only had their love for a year before he died. I don't know if this is a true story, but it's very moving.

Voice/Tone: At first, the voice is light and nostalgic. But, as we move through the story, it turns to one of lament and sadness. Your last line, where you write, "'George, I still love you!'" is so sad. I could picture the scene, at this guy's graveside. So sad.

Mechanics: Four quatrains with an abcb rhyme scheme throughout. You stick to this perfectly. All the rhymes work, and the poem has a great natural rhythm. Nicely done.

My Favourite Part: These lines brought a lump to my throat because they're just so beautiful: "Asking to be more than just a friend, / It spoke to my lonely heart."

This is a lovely poem, Neva. It's very emotional, and it's easy to feel great compassion for the narrator. Great work!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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13
13
Review of Poetry Forms  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi Prosperous Snow Globe

This review is in affiliation with "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. It is the first of your Chocolate Truffle reviews which Jody recently gifted you.

I was going to review three poems, but then I came across this little gem. It's so interesting and so helpful that I have favourited it. I think it could come in handy when Andy's Ultimate Poetry Challenge begins.

Some of the poetic forms you describe on here, I've never heard of. The Cross, for example. How intriguing that form is. I'm tempted to have a go at writing one, but maybe I should wait and see if Andy uses it. The Diatelle, also, intrigues me. Reading this has made me all the more eager for the poetry challenge to begin.

It's nice to see so many forms described here. You do a great job with your descriptions, too. They are all clearly explained. If I were to make a suggestion, though, I would say to try to find poems beginning with the letters you have missed. I'm sure there must be some. Under W, for example, you could include a Wayra.

This is just a thought ... I know Andy was looking for suggestions for poetic forms to use in his challenge. Maybe, if you send him a link to this item, he might be grateful for the ideas.

I'm so happy I came across this item. It's of benefit to everyone who writes poetry. Great work!

Choconut

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14
14
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
Hi Jeff

I am happy to be reviewing you on behalf of "The Rockin' Reviewers. This is your second Chocolate Fudge review. I chose it because it is in your New & Noteworthy folder.

Please remember these are only my opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first thoughts: Oh, what a great lesson in paying attention! As I first read, I wondered where you would take the story. I noted your brief description mentions going from one temperature to another, but I was intrigued as to what could happen within that description.

Plot: This is the story of Gil, a guy from Minnesota who accepts a work transfer to the beach of California. However, he wasn't paying proper attention when he was offered the transfer, and he actually ends up somewhere near Las Vegas, where the temperature is in triple digits. Quite a shock to the system, I imagine. It made me laugh that Gil had arranged everything so perfectly, right down to the rental car when he reached his destination. He just didn't check where that address would be. It really made me laugh.

Characters: Gil. Oh, Gil. A man who really should listen to what people say sometimes. I admire the way he decided to give the desert his best shot. It's just a pity his clothes mostly consisted of fleeces! The poor guy. I can't imagine being thrown into the dry desert heat, from my cool place in southern England.

What I liked: I loved Gil's confusion when the taxi driver headed onto the I-10 East. Finally, he decided to check his destination. The last paragraph really made me laugh. I think Gil's two resolutions are perfect. I don't think he'll ever be surprised when he reaches his destination again.

Suggestions: This may be me, but the paragraph where you describe Gil mapping out his address on his smartphone is a little confusing. When he keeps zooming in and out, I got confused. Now, I've re-read it, I understand what you're saying. But, on my first read, I wasn't sure about it. Also, in the first paragraph, you use the word actually twice, and it stands out a little. For example, the first line reads: "Gil was actually excited about his employer transferring him to another city." You don't need to use it here. It doesn't add anything to the narrative. Finally, "There wasn’t a ton of occasion for shorts ..." I would add an s to occasion.

This is a funny, well-written story. I felt for Gil. He must have been so disappointed that he would be staying in the middle of the desert, and not near the ocean at all. Nicely done.


Most importantly, keep writing!

Choconut


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15
15
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Hi Jeff

I am happy to be reviewing you on behalf of "The Rockin' Reviewers. This review is part of a (very old!) Chocolate Fudge package from my Chocolate Emporium. It was gifted to you from Shaye Lorraine . I apologise it's taken so long for me to catch up.

Please remember these are only my opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first thoughts: Your title is really appealing. It's perfect for the story, whilst not giving anything away about the plot. I like that. As I first read, I wondered what would be wrong with the girl. I love the suspense as Mrs Applebaum is speaking to the counsellor. We know her daughter is going to be scary in some way, and I was hooked from the start.

Plot: Sophia is a little girl who plays upstairs with her naughty doll whilst her mother speaks to a counsellor about her. I wondered what kind of a psycho-child Sophia would turn out to be. Part of me thought she might be possessed in some way, complete with wild eyes and freaky noises. The fact that she's actually calm and appears 'normal' when she speaks makes her more sinister, I think. Like, she's a proper psychopath.

Characters: This is a piece of flash fiction, so there's not much room for in-depth character studies. You do, however, paint a fabulous picture of the disturbing child, Sophia. There's a definite Stephen King vibe coming from her.

What I liked: I love the reveal of Mr. Tobias. The whole story builds up to us meeting Sophia and her doll. When we finally get the description of the doll (which she keeps in a casket), it's fantastic: "a sackcloth doll with button eyes, eerily realistic hair, and crayon-painted features." What's more, the hair came from her teacher she hated: Mr. Tobias. You write the hair was, "obtained from him with a pair of safety scissors during arts and crafts time." I love it! Great imagination.

Suggestions: My only suggestion is maybe you could make this a longer story. Show us what happened with Mr. Tobias and the cutting of his hair. Also, what other scary things does Sophia do? How does her first session with the counsellor go? I would love to read more of this story.

I really enjoyed reading this. I love where you have taken the prompt. I would never have thought of that. Great work!


Most importantly, keep writing!

Choconut


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16
16
Review of Fog  
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
Hi William Stafford ,

I've just finished reading your short story, "Fog, and I'd like to offer the following comments. This review is in affiliation with "The Rockin' Reviewers. It has been gifted to you from celticsea as part of my Chocolate Emporium.

Please remember these are purely my own opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first impressions: This is a great story! I love how you build up the suspense by focussing on the density of the fog and how your main character can see nothing but keeps thinking they hear a voice or see a shadow. It's all very creepy. Using fog is a great way to create that suspense. Take away the characters' main sense—vision—and they are helpless.

Plot: This is a creepy tale of two people caught out in the fog ... with a murderer nearby. But, who is the murderer, and who his victim? It's nicely written. I love the end, where we learn that your main character has spent the whole night in the truck with the dead body of Bobby without realising it. I like how you say, "As I slide in, I feel something wet." when she climbs into the truck. This tells your readers exactly what is going on, and puts us one step ahead of your character.

What I really liked: The suspense. I held my breath the whole way through the story, waiting to find out what would happen. I did wonder whether Bobby would turn out to be the murderer. But, no. He was the murder victim. A lot of the suspense is created through your excellent use of sensory words. You really do 'show' us the story from the inside. By describing the damp, cold, dense fog, your readers can feel it as though they are there. It's a great tool to use.

Readability/Grammar/Punctuation: I have a few suggestions which I have put in this dropnote ...

Grammar Suggestions/Typos

Suggestions: I had a bit of trouble with the dialogue. It is good and believable, but it's not always clear who is speaking. I think you need to add a few dialogue tags or to show some kind of mannerism or action immediately before or after some of the speech to tell us who is saying what. The first line of dialogue, I had to go back over a few times to figure it out because you've been speaking from your main character's viewpoint, then this dialogue is from someone else—Bobby. Maybe, you could write something like:

"IS SOMEONE THERE?!"

My heart leapt to my throat at the sound. "Bobby! You scared the crap outta me!"

Final thoughts: I really enjoyed reading this story. You hooked me right at the start and kept me hooked the whole way through. I had to read everything because I had to know who would die and who I could trust. There is some great suspense and some great description here. Great work!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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17
17
Review of Guardian Angel  
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi Dominique

I've just finished reading your short story, "Guardian Angel, and I'd like to offer the following comments. This review is in affiliation with "The Rockin' Reviewers, and it is a part of "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these are purely my own opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first impressions: What a beautiful love story. As I read, I got completely caught up in Angelo's love for Gabriella. It is sweet and tender and so pure. I really wanted him to be able to end up with Gabriella, taking care of her forever.

Plot: Quite simply, this is the love story of Angelo and Gabriella. He is her guardian angel, who wasn't supposed to fall in love with her. She; a young woman who has no idea she is being protected. I love the idea for this plot. It's original, and I wish I'd thought of it myself! The characters—Angelo, in particular—are so likeable and relatable. They draw the reader into the story and ensure we read to the end. The question hanging over the whole story is: Will Angelo be able to stay with Gabriella forever and if he can, will she freak out at the thought of this supernatural being, or will she love him, too? I'm so glad it works out well in the end. I did wonder why Yadum didn't know Angelo's connection with Nickoli wouldn't work. He must have encountered this before. I also wondered what changed to break that connection. I think it was the part where Angelo cried. It made him partly human and, maybe, strengthened his connection with Gabriella.

What I really liked: The warmth I felt at the end of the story. It's a real feel-good ride. I love how the ring on Angelo's finger is his means of communicating with and travelling between worlds. More specifically, I loved this part: "She races toward her phone and hops over her bed to reach it, jumping through me along the way." That made me chuckle. Nice supernatural atmosphere. I also love this part: "Tears trickle down my face for the first time as an angel. It feels strange and oddly human." Beautiful description. It brought a lump to my throat.

Readability/Grammar/Punctuation: I have a few suggestions, so I've put them in this dropnote ...

Grammar Suggestions/Typos

Suggestions: I only have one suggestion, and that is to add one word to the end of the story: "Always." So, it would read, "'Of course.' I lift her chin and kiss her. 'Always.'"

Final thoughts: I really enjoyed this story. It's intriguing, filled with love and has a happy ending. What more could anyone ask for? Great work and beautiful writing.

Keep writing!

Choconut

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18
18
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi 🌜 Huntersmoon

I am reviewing this on behalf of "The Rockin' Reviewers. It is also part of "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: Wow! I love this poem! I would never have thought of taking this direction for the Easter Bunny. I have to say, I fell in love with the little guy straight away. You do a great job of making him loveable. Aw. All he wanted to be was a unicorn, despite the derision of his father. That's too cute, Ken. Too cute.

Voice/Tone: The voice is light and the poem reads like a fairytale. There is a great moral to it, as well: be happy with who you are. You are who you are meant to be. It's great for children to hear this. I note you have said this is in the children's genre, and I think that is perfect, I can imagine kids loving this and laughing in all the right places. At the same time, I think it's great for adults, too. I think we probably understand it on another level to children, but it will resonate with a lot of us. And, the humour is fab. I had a massive smile on my face by the end.

Mechanics: The poem is written in quatrains with an abcb rhyme scheme, with a rhyming couplet at the end. The rhyme helps the rhythm and pace of the poem. If I'm honest, I'm not sure about the couplet at the end. The last line doesn't seem to fit as well as the rest of them. It feels like it's too short. I wonder if that's why you put the grimace-face at the end. It's your final spot of humour.

My Favourite Part: I am in love with the Easter Bunny. I want to give him a big, old hug and tell him he is perfect as he is. I also have a new respect for unicorns after reading this. I never knew they were hunted so much they had to hide. I love the description of the unicorn "tossing his hair". That's fab. I also love these lines: "What you dream isn’t what it seems. / Just ask that bear named Teddy." I laughed at that. I wonder what Teddy wanted to be! The whole poem just left me feeling happy. Even though, I now realise I have absolutely zero chance of winning this contest, when up against this poem. Oh well. I had fun writing mine.

Suggestions: Just one tiny grammatical point: "His fathers chide still rang inside:" - You need an apostrophe before the s in fathers.

I absolutely love this poem, Ken. It's warm and funny and has a wonderful moral at its heart. Great writing. Great work!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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19
19
Review of The Last Stitch  
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Hi IceSkating SugarCube

I've just finished reading your short story, "The Last Stitch, and I'd like to offer the following comments on behalf of "The Rockin' Reviewers. This review is also part of "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these are purely my own opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first impressions: I love your title! It draws the reader to it so nicely. As I started to read, I loved the opening where the newspaper lands heavily on Louise's doormat. It serves wonderfully as an omen of danger to come. As I continued to read, your hook brought a smile to my face. Louise's horoscope has been tippiexed out, and a message written in its place: "Seamstress sews last stitch." That's brilliant! I had to read on to find out who had sent this frightening message, and what his plans were for Louise.

Plot: The suspense is wonderful throughout this story. It's a truly thrilling and creepy ride. Particularly clever is the setting for this story: right next to the Sawtooth Mountains. Now, I don't know those mountains, but the image this creates is sinister, and it emphasises the danger this woman could be in. Little by little, we learn Louise is in hiding from her abusive ex-husband. He is the danger that could be lurking outside her home. The footprint in the ground outside her window adds even more suspense to this story. I found myself holding my breath as the gentleman stepped closer to her. But, not everything was as it seemed. Your conclusion is genius. Louise's husband has been murdered by his new wife, but he failed to change his will, meaning Louise will inherit millions of dollars. However, I think the most important thing she has inherited is freedom. She can venture outside once again without fearing for her life. I love how the sun is warm at the end of the story, reflecting Louise's new life.

What I really liked: The ending. It's fab. This description near the beginning sets the scene perfectly: "The view to the north, that I once found enchanting featured the jagged Sawtooths slicing through the pale blue sky, threatening me with its brutal, sharp edge." I imagined a sharp, jagged shadow being cast over the story. This part also stood out as fantastic: "Eye contact always felt so personal, intimate. Like I needed a cigarette after." The only word I have for it is perfect. It's just perfect. In addition, I love Louise's thoughts when she sees the footprint in the soil: "I couldn’t take my eyes off the offending boot shape pressed into virgin soil. A rape. A violation of my little paradise." A lot of the time, Louise reacts to her situation with these visceral feelings. It really pulls the reader into the story. It's a great tool to use. Plus, it makes her feel so real.

Readability/Grammar/Punctuation: I have a few suggestions, which I have put in this dropnote.

Grammar Suggestions

Suggestions: I only have one comment, and I'm not sure it really matters. But, Frank is Louise's lawyer. He seems to know her well, and he knows all about her abusive past. (He knows her so well that he is the only person who knows her whereabouts.) However, it doesn't occur to him that the note in the paper would scare her. It doesn't quite fit, but, as I said, I'm not sure it matters all that much.

Final thoughts: This is an entertaining story that kept me hooked and on the edge of my seat the whole time. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you for sharing!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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20
20
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi Lassie ,

I am happy to be reviewing you on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is the Strawberry Surprise review you were gifted from my Chocolate Emporium by Patricia Gilliam .

Please remember these are only my opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first thoughts: I was drawn to your folder of animal-related items. This story, in particular, stood out to me because of your brief description. 'A rough collie who is afraid of the water.' I had a Collie X who was terrified of water. Even puddles, he would walk a foot around them to avoid getting his paws wet. It must be a collie thing. I now have a black lab who adores water, and it took some getting used to, after years of having Jake who was terrified.

Plot: This is a heartwarming story of a brave collie who conquers his fear to save a little boy's life. I wonder if it is a true story, as I see you genuinely have a rough collie called Laddie? If it is true, I'd love to know if this conquered his fear permanently, or whether he is scared of water again now. It's a lovely tale, it really is. Laddie sounds adorable.

Characters: Well, Laddie is definitely the star of this story. He is only a pup himself, and he has a fear: water. I love how the events are related through Laddie's eyes. This sentence made me chuckle: "Laddie noticed how small they were; as a dog, he guessed they were just puppies." I love that! I'm sure it's how they think.

Grammar: Just a few minor points ... "'You know you aren't going to be able to keep that Laddie.'" There should be a comma before Laddie. Also, "He finally tugged hard enough to get lose ..." It should be loose. Finally, "' Yes, Laddie, You're a hero, you're a superhero in my book boy.'" It should be a period after Laddie, and a new sentence for "You're a hero ..." Also, you need a comma before boy.

What I liked: Laddie! He is so brave. He also comes across as being such a cutie. I love the narration that comes from Laddie and the way we see the world through his eyes.

Suggestions: As the story is told by Laddie, it would be nice to see why he is afraid of the water. It would be nice if you show us his thoughts and feelings around that. It could be really interesting. Other than that, the place I stumbled over was where you write, "'Okay, Laddie, not ready to go yet?'" Then, you start a new paragraph and write, "'Okay, Laddie,' his mamma said, 'I guess you don't want to go home yet.'" This is essentially the same thing, and also starting a new paragraph is a little confusing. I would take out the second part if I were you. It's not necessary.

This is an enjoyable read that left me with a huge smile on my face. Laddie is a great character, and I would lvoe to read about more of his antics. Nice work!

Most importantly, keep writing!

Choconut


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21
21
Review of Good-bye Despair  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi Prosperous Snow Globe

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is the Strawberry Surprise review which was gifted you from my Chocolate Emporium. I apologise it's taken so long for me to complete.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: Wow. This poem is very emotional. I remember writing a poem for this prompt also, but I don't think it was nearly as good as this one. What I love most about it is, even after a few reads-through, I'm not sure who the narrator is addressing. Is it a partner or family member who suffers from depression (which is what I originally thought), or is she addressing herself; her own despair? I love the ambiguity. I have a feeling she is addressing herself, though.

Voice/Tone: The poem starts out with a narrator who sounds dark and weary. She needs light to survive and to live, but at the moment she is overshadowed by darkness. There is a fear that runs through the poem of death and of the darkness that threatens to take over. It's kind of a never-ending cycle of depression throwing darkness over you, which makes you feel depressed, which throws more darkness over you, and so on. The end, though: that is where the change lies. The last line suggests you are taking charge and letting go of the things that have hurt you in the past. I love that notion.

Rhythm: This poem has a great rhythm that runs the whole way through it. The meter is consistent and the abab rhyme scheme works. The last verse is a little less fluid. It feels like the line: "I can taste your fear in the air," doesn't have enough syllables. Then, the last two lines have more syllables. The contrast is a little jarring. It isn't a huge issue, though.

My Favourite Part: The last line: "Leaving you is my sanity's salvation." Again, I'm not entirely sure who the narrator is leaving, but I have a feeling it is her own darkness and depression. I love how the poem is dark right up until this point, and then you leave your readers with a sense of hope.

This is a really well-written poem. I enjoyed reading it, and I love the imagery you create. Great work!

Keep writing!

Choconut

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22
22
Review of Rose  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hi Dominique

I am happy to be reviewing you on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. This is the Strawberry Surprise review gifted you from my Chocolate Emporium a little while ago. I apologise it's taken so long for me to complete.

Please remember these are only my opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first thoughts: This is an interesting story. I love the idea of purple and teal roses—they are my favourite colours, too. As I first read through this story, I found lots to pique my interest. Like, I want to know more about Cassandra's boyfriend. More about her mother, as well. And, of course, I want to know who the flowers are from. I'm not sure whether you're planning to take this in a romantic direction, or a more frightening one.

Plot: Cassandra finds a bunch of flowers on her doorstep. They are her favourite colours, but the note doesn't say who they are from. Maybe, her moody, jealous boyfriend? Maybe, her mother? Or, is it someone completely different? A stalker? A secret admirer? As mentioned above, I'm not really sure where this is going. I appreciate this is only a short introduction, but I came away from it feeling I'm not sure what the hook is meant to be, or if there is a hook. The mystery of the flower-giver, I guess. But, I wonder how far you can go with this storyline.

Characters: It is Daniel who interests me the most. He feels dangerous, like he could maybe hurt Cassandra through his jealousy. Although, she doesn't seem very scared of him. She seems fed up more than anything. The conversation between Cassandra and her mother, I felt, could have made more of an impact. Her mother didn't seem at all interested in her daughter's mystery bunch of flowers. She played it very cool. I did wonder if she knew who they were from, but I can't work out why she would. I wondered why Cassandra's fingers trembled as she dialled her mother's number. It's the only time through the whole piece where she seems unnerved.

Grammar: I have a few suggestions, which I will put in a dropnote as I know they are not your main concern in this story.
Grammar Suggestions

What I liked: The intrigue. Here, you introduce us to three characters who all seem a little untrustworthy. I think they probably all have a secret or two to hide, and I'm interested to know what those are.

Suggestions: Watch your tenses. You constantly shift from the present tense to the past tense, and every time you do it, it brings the reader out of the story. For example, "Purple and teal roses sat awaiting Cassandra, her favorite colors. Smiling from ear to ear, she lets out an embarrassingly loud shriek ..." This also brings to light my other suggestions. Try to use fewer adjectives and adverbs to tell a story. Instead, use stronger verbs and richer descriptions that pull the reader into the story. In this example, the words embarrassingly and loud are redundant. Most shrieks I've ever heard are, by definition, both of these things. There are quite a few instances where I would try to work on this.

So, in answer to your questions ... Yes, I think this could be an interesting longer work, but that is dependent upon where you plan to take it. At the moment, it still needs a hook. Your readers will want to know what they have decided to read. The layers and complications of a longer work of fiction can come afterwards. Right now, what it needs is something to plant backsides on seats and promise them great things are to come.

I hope this is helpful. I enjoyed reading this, and I've tried to be as honest as possible. It's a good short story, but with some work, I think it could be a great longer work.

Most importantly, keep writing!

Choconut


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23
23
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi IceSkating SugarCube

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group. It is also part of "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: This poem made me smile! It's so positive and joyous. What a great take on the prompts given for this contest. I love your first line. It's a great hook into the rest of the poem. That image of fierce winds blowing away all the depression and unhappiness from the winter is fantastic.

Voice/Tone: The voice is one of strength and happiness and optimism for what is to come. I love the way you anticipate forgetting all about eating miserable salads and just accepting yourself as you are.

Mechanics: This poem is free verse, which works really nicely. There is a wonderful rhythm which makes the poem run smoothly, at a great pace. It rolls off the tongue, and this adds to the light feeling you create.

My Favourite Part: This line: "(fat-free, carb-free, JOY-free)." Ohh, I hear you! I also love this line: "Depression is swept up like cobwebs". It's a powerful image, and something about it has really struck a chord with me.

Suggestions: Just one grammatical point. I would remove the comma at the end of this line: "I shed my winter skin," By having this comma, it makes the next sentence read as though you are going to say, "and all notion of being / someone who takes up / less space" does something. When, actually, you're are including the "notion" as part of a list of what you shed. Does that make sense? I'm not sure I explained it very well.

I really enjoyed this poem. It's entertaining, lighthearted, and very relatable.

Keep writing!

Choconut

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24
24
Review of The Audition  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: 13+ | (3.5)
Hi Detective

I am happy to be reviewing you on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group [E]. This review is also for "I Write in 2019.

Please remember these are only my opinions, and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

My first thoughts: I found myself intrigued by your title and brief description, and as I began to read, I enjoyed the gradual build-up to the paranormal creature at the end of the story.

Plot: Maggie is a young woman who wants to audition for a play in college. However, the bad weather sets the scene for something much scarier. When no one else arrives to audition, the theatre is creepy and she is sure she hears noises that must signal someone else being there. It isn't until the end that she sees the creature: dark and with a maniacal laugh. I felt the end seemed a little rushed. I'm guessing there was a word limit? It did all seem like a bit of a let-down, though. There is such build-up and suspense, and then it's all over. Maggie leaves quickly, and the creature is slow. So, she easily gets away from it. Then, it's gone and she goes back to her dorm. It would have been great to see a little more confrontation before she gets away, or more of a struggle to get away. I have to say, I love how you used the weather to create a dark, hostile, frightening environment. That's a clever trick to use.

Characters: Maggie is the main character, and she is well written. I like her. She is braver than I would have been. When I heard the door in the empty auditorium, I think I would have been out of there.

Grammar/Typos: I have a few suggestions here, so I'll put them in a dropnote. That way, you can ignore them if you so wish ...
Grammar Suggestions/Typos

What I liked: The suspense. The way we know something bad is about to happen to Maggie, but we don't know what. I love the way she knows somebody else is there, but they don't show themselves until the end. Also, as I mentioned above, I love your use of the weather to create the suspense. Great job with that!

Suggestions: You use a passive voice in quite a lot of the story. By doing this, you are creating a barrier between the reader and the story. It reminds us you're telling a story. For example, take this sentence: "The hallways of the drama department were deserted and silent when she entered." That's good. It shows us how the hallways are empty. But, if you write something like, "The stale air hit the back of Maggie's throat the moment she stepped into the hallway. Her footsteps echoed as she sought out the auditorium. Rubbing her arm, she noted how goosebumps covered her skin." Something like that, anyway. It pulls the reader inside the story more.

One tiny point: You write, "The weather said to expect a storm ..." I know what you mean, but this sounds as though the weather itself spoke. Weatherperson would work better.


This is an enjoyable, interesting story. I think, with a few tweaks, it could be fantastic. I would love to see more of a bang at the end, but maybe that's just my personal preferences. It is still a really good story.

Most importantly, keep writing!

Choconut


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25
25
Review of The Business  
In affiliation with WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi amy-Looking Forward

I am reviewing this on behalf of "WdC SuperPower Reviewers Group, as per your recent request.

Please remember these views are purely my own and any advice given is with the sole intention of being helpful.

First Impressions: I love the sentiment of this poem. The message is positive and will reel your clients in.

Voice/Tone: Mostly, you have the right tone of voice. You are serious and confident. The only thing I'm not entirely sure about is the line, "You are at a loss for ability." This makes it sound as though you are telling your clients they don't have any ability or talent unless they come to you. It comes across as a little negative. Especially, when you add it to the dark landscape in the next verse. I've been trying to think about how to change it and, I have to be honest, I'm struggling. All I can say is maybe you could try to say something like they have the talent, but don't know how to harness it without you. So, "Reaching out for stability, / Not sure how to train your ability." I'm sure you can think of something better than that my example.

Rhythm: The rhythm is good. The poem flows nicely. The only place I'm not sure about is the last line. It is longer than the others and throws the rhythm off a little. Also, you use the word Bringing in the first line of this verse, then Brings in the fourth line. I would try to think of a different word for one of those. "The confidence I bring alive, / Gives you a business that will thrive." Again, my example is not great. I'm sure you can think of something much better.

My Favourite Part: I love the overall feeling this poem evokes. It relates how a time of uncertainty can become a prosperous time if your clients put their trust in you. And, it does instil trust in you. I really like that.

As always, I hope this review is helpful. If you want me to take a look at any revisions, just ask.

Keep writing!

Choconut

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