Please remember that any suggestions I may make are just that- suggestions! You can either take them or leave them as you see fit. After all, it is your piece! I am only here to help you grow as a writer. In the process, not only am I helping you, but by reviewing your piece, it helps me grow as a writer to. I hope you find this review helpful and encouraging!
Title: The Unfinished Journal This title really caught my attention from the get go. I was not disappointed. It fits well with the story and draws the reader into it. Nicely done!
What I liked: I really enjoyed this piece. It has been a long while since I have read a longer piece. I liked how you were able to captivate me by using the journal as a "character of its own" so to speak.
What I disliked: This doesn't dock off any points from the rating system, just a preference of mine. The woman called Lady Alice gave me spine tingling chills, which is a good thing.
Grammatical Errors: Noticed a few things. Other than that, your grammar was/is great!
Paragraph 9, line 3:Old two and three story buildings were crammed together[,] like crooked, hunched over men braving the cold.
Paragraph 10, line 4: I dumped my stuff in my room[, and t] [T]hen[,] [I] called home to let my husband know how far I’d made it and what my plans were for the next couple of days.
Paragraph 12, lines 1 and 2: The next store was one with handcrafted candles, wizards, castles, and dragons. (space needed)Leaning against a six[-]foot tall[,} carved[,] wooden gnome I found a gnarled willow wood walking stick that I simply had to have...
Paragraph 12, line 4: Being at over 7000 feet above sea level, it just didn’t seem as if there was quite enough air to breathe[, and i] [I]t felt good to just sit and absorb the quirky atmosphere of the village.
Paragraph 13, line 5:I watched her as she disappeared into her store[,] [with] her long floral skirt brushing the cobblestones as she walked, the tinkling sounds of her jewelry surrounding her in music.
Paragraph 14, line 6: It had that delicious feel about it[;] as if something magical was about to happen.
Paragraph 15, line 2: Long[, long] (The repeated word of long seems repetitive to me) tawny hair was looped and twisted and tied with colorful beads.
Paragraph 20, line 2: Ancient trunks[,] [with] lids open[,] spilled forth sheet music and jewelry, a stuffed tree frog and stained glass sun catchers.
Questions or Concerns: Not truly important, but why didn't the husband go with Sarah?
Characterization: This was a well written story with thought out characters who all had important roles to the plot. Though the husband is not seen and only mentioned, he too played an important part. For me, I felt as if the journal was character driven. Awesome!
Plot: As I read, I couldn't hep but read more to discover what the ending had in store for Sarah and this mysterious journal. Your plot, as far as I could tell, was well thought out. I didn't notice any key points of the story missing. Although, I did and do wonder about Lady Alice. i would love to see more of her.
Where I found this piece: I found this in the Short Stories News Letter entitled for this month: Character's Components.
[u}Overall Impression: I'm really not into reading horror/scary stories, but this was a really good one! I enjoyed reading it. You had me hooked from beginning to end! Nicely done. I loved how you named the cat Archimedes! You have got some talent for sure!
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