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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/reamie
Review Requests: OFF
37 Public Reviews Given
Review Style
Please post review requests to World Weavers' Network . If the item is written for a short story contest, please say so for extra credit. My reviews cover technical (grammar & style), character and world-building. I usually send detailed private reviews. Please specify if you want a public review.
I'm good at...
characterisation and world-building.
Favorite Genres
Fantasy, Sci-fi, historical.
Least Favorite Genres
Non-fiction and contemporary romance
Favorite Item Types
Static items and books.
I will not review...
poetry, children's fiction, young adult or contemporary romance (historical, scifi or fantasy romance is ok).
Public Reviews
1
1
Review of Love is..  
Review by Tileira
Rated: E | (3.0)
A new Anniversary Review signature to use, courtesy of  [Link To User legerdemain]

*CakeB* HAPPY WDC ACCOUNT ANNIVERSARY FROM "Anniversary Reviews*CakeP*


I found my way to your portfolio from the member account anniversaries page. Happy September!

Please excuse me resending this review. I ingeniously forgot to tick the box to make it a public review.


*Noteo* Overall Impressions *Noteo*

*Asterisko* The item isn't labelled as such, or formatted as such, but I believe its a free verse or prose poem.

*Asterisko* The poem doesn't use rhyme or meter, as far as I can tell, but it built of poetic elements: active use of line breaks, juxtaposition, metaphors and a tight combination of key images and ideas.

*Asterisko* It's about both the joys and pains of love.


*Noteo* Favourite Details *Noteo*

I like the contrast between the contradictory facets of love: love is crazy but it brings you peace, it's not black and white, but it is made of them.


*Noteo* Other Comments *Noteo*

There are some things you could do to improve the visibility of Love is..

*Asterisko* The item type is set to "other". This could be set to "poetry", if the item is a poem to make it easier for poetry readers to find.

*Asterisko* You could use the item description to make it clearer to someone browsing what lies with your item. Like "a prose poem on the many faces of love" would tell readers the poem is above the feeling, not about a particular love story.

*Asterisko* I feel poetry benefits from the use of concise language. Personally "It does have its shades of grey" lacks energy, especially compared to the quick pace of "Love is insane, it's crazy, it is foolishness". I'm not sure I have a specific suggestion for how to improve that line, but it feels like an echo of the preceding line rather than the resolution of it.

*Noteo* Technical and Grammar *Noteo*

*Asterisko* "But it brings you such piece of mind"

*Asterisko* "It does have its shades of grey

*Asterisko* "But love makes you feel–so alive"


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
2
2
Review by Tileira
Rated: E | (3.0)
A new Anniversary Review signature to use, courtesy of  [Link To User legerdemain]

*CakeB* HAPPY WDC ACCOUNT ANNIVERSARY FROM "Anniversary Reviews*CakeP*


I found my way to your portfolio from the member account anniversaries page. Happy September!

While I was looking for something to review in your portfolio, I found your folder Science Fiction and Fantasy  and I have several suggestions of edits you could make to the folder both for its own sake and your portfolio generally.


*Noteo* Overall Impressions *Noteo*

Your portfolio is nicely sorted into a select number of folders, each with cover art and clearly labelled.

Some of the items in this folder are numbered, which makes me curious which items are connected to each other, especially since there seem to be gaps in the numbering.


*Noteo* Favourite Detail *Noteo*

You've chosen an absolutely beautiful piece of art for your cover. One which wholly encapsulates the genre of the items within.

*Noteo* Suggestions *Noteo*

*Asterisko* Genre tags, for this folder and your others. You should try to avoid using the "other" genre tag and pick any other tag, even if it's only tangentially connected. There are two reasons for this: to make it easier for your items to be discovered when someone is searching or browsing for something to read, and to increase the number of categories your items can be nominated for in Quill Nomination Form 2022  . This is more important for individual items, but folders can be nominated for "best collection".

*Asterisko* Cover art on all the items in the portfolio, even if you're just picking from WDC stock art on older items.

*Asterisko* This folder contains 25 items at present. If you are able to create more folders, I suggest separating your fantasy and sci-fi genre stories into two separate folders now. It gives you more room inside the folder, and having a few items in a folder makes it easier for someone browsing to choose what to read. Although the next suggestion also helps with that.

*Asterisko* Writing an index in the folder body/description. If some of your stories are linked to each other, listing link in the folder body will make that clearer and make it easier for readers to follow the stories through.

Alternatively, you could categories the stories by length in the folder body. You can look at Midnight Masquerade  for an example of how you might decorate an index.
Or another option would be to use that space to tell reviewers what you want them to comment on when reviewing your items, like 3W Blurb and Review Guidance .

*Asterisko* make sure your key words/tags field has either every relevant word you can think of, or the maximum number of words you can add. I can't check this from my end, but it helps people find you. Since you haven't set all your genre fields, you might have more you can do with key words too.

You might want to check out "PORTFOLIO STUDIO"   by Whata Turkey on other ways to polish your folders and portfolio to encourage an audience.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
3
3
Review by Tileira
Rated: E | (3.5)
A new Anniversary Review signature to use, courtesy of  [Link To User legerdemain]

*CakeB* HAPPY WDC ACCOUNT ANNIVERSARY FROM "Anniversary Reviews*CakeP*


I found my way to your portfolio from the member account anniversary page, looking for members with account anniversaries this month.

I don't routinely write essays or non-fiction texts, so if any of my suggestions don't make sense, feel free to ignore me. I'm reading The Constitutionality of Nullification  as someone with no knowledge of U.S. history, but professional experience of delivering and reading complex information and instructions, and legal documents.

The Constitutionality of Nullification  discusses something that is alarmingly relevant in the current political environment: the powers of states to nullify federal (central government) law. I think this is something a lot of people would be interested to read presently. I think the essay would benefit from being more accessible, but more importantly that people would benefit from your essay being accessible.

The essay is very informative on the topic, clearly citing sources and laying out a full history behind nullification theory.

Unfortunately, the essay is quite a heavy read, using dense academic language to the point of excluding the layperson.

For example, the first paragraph makes reference to "the tariff" but I don't know what tariff you're referring to or its significance. Perhaps there is enough information in the essay for me to look it up, but there isn't enough information for me to know whether I need to look for it. I think two or three sentences on what "the tariff" was and why South Carolina took issue with it.

Equally, I believe it's important to explain what part of the Constitution something is perceived to be in conflict when describing something as 'unconstitutional'. I understand this is reference to South Carolina's position at the time, but making that direct connection helps the reader to understand the context and promotes an understanding of the Constitution.

I would encourage you to use cleaner sentence structures, rather than flourishes. For example "The state was also, according to Calhoun, the proper entity..." is easier to parse when re-arranged into "According to Calhoun, the state was also the proper entity...". Small changes like this make the whole incrementally easier to read without sacrificing technical accuracy.

There are two paragraphs (3 and 8) which should have an additional paragraph break added. The first could be broken at "One thing that..." and the second perhaps at "The two theories may have had...".

It may also be worth considering simpler or more common terms in pace of some of those used in the essay. It's difficult for me to provide an example, because it's not clear which words are used for a very specific definition and which are not: which is part of my point. Where weres can be simplified, they should be in order to highlight those technical terms which are important.

It might also be worth adding a drop note for defining important terms ({dropnote:"defined terms"} ... {/dropnote}) like "compact", "void" etc. I understand the majority of these terms, but someone with less experience in reading contracts or regulations may have difficulty understanding them or may be intimidated by the use of legalistic language without that additional transparency.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
4
4
Review of Nothing Rhymed.  
Review by Tileira
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
I couldn't resist this one.

overall impressions

Nothing rhymed.

favourite details

Nothing rhymed.

suggestions for improvement

"The citrus juicer limed" lost me. "Lime" can be a verb, but means "to treat with lime", which is an alkaline substance used to treat soils or water and such.
5
5
Review of Progress  
Review by Tileira
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
*CakeB* HAPPY WDC ACCOUNT ANNIVERSARY FROM "Anniversary Reviews*CakeP*

An image donated by  [Link To User legerdemain]  for use with Anniversary Reviews


Another anniversary review for one of my favourite WDC moderators. Congratulations on your 14th anniversary!

overall impressions

I am very curious about the message behind this poem and what meaning you had in mind when you wrote it.

I can think of a few possibilities:
increased prosperity for one person to own 9 couches,
or increased prosperity meaning multiple generations of the same family no longer have to co-habit one house,
or the availability of birth control and better healthcare causing the cousin to have no siblings,
or is "progress" declared ruefully? Is it a sad thing that the latest generation is small? That family is less important than it once was?

I wonder what other people feel when they read this poem and what their reaction says about their lives.

suggestions for improvement

I think this is a free verse poem. If it is following any internal rules I haven't recognised, please ignore me.

The near symmetry between the first and second stanza is nagging at me. I would want to pull "Today, the numbers / are the same" onto a single line to make both stanzas five lines.

I would also change "in reverse" to "reversed". The second stanza is a reflection of the first, but "reversed" creates a more active phrase that supports the change from the past to the present as the result of actions taken.
6
6
Review by Tileira
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
*CakeB* HAPPY WDC ACCOUNT ANNIVERSARY FROM "Anniversary Reviews*CakeP*

An image donated by  [Link To User legerdemain]  for use with Anniversary Reviews


overall impressions

This poem tells a lovely little story about a young man going out into the world to find adventure and finding it closer to home than he expects.

I like the simple rhyming scheme; it gives the poem a light and predictable rhythm that ticks through swiftly. It gives the poem a sort of fairy-tale feeling.

favourite details

I also find it telling that the priest does just give in the young man's demands. It seems he doesn't really believe what he says any more than the other two characters do.

suggestions for improvement

I think the only place for any improvements is the third stanza. "Unexpected" and "investigated" could be a better rhyme. There are few for "unexpected" that could work better, like "neglected" or "corrected".

It feels a little odd to me for the second line in that stanza (line 10) to read "he'd heard" and not just "he heard". There's something like a tongue-twister to that.
7
7
Review of The Morning Sun  
Review by Tileira
Rated: E | (4.5)
overall impressions

This is a magical celebration of dawn, drawing in features of the fantasy adventure genre to characterise night day.

This is a difficult form to work to. I'm very impressed by how natural the phrases are while conforming to the format.

You wrote this poem as an example of a Lục bát for "Invalid Item . It's an excellent idea to demonstrate the form to help contestants study it.

favourite details

My favourite lines are the set up for the "swords" rhyme. I love that pairing of night and day with the battle between Light/good and Dark/evil in this poem. The rhymes emphasise it and make it more evocative and at the same time it's not over laboured. It's simply presenting the Sun as a liberator from night.

suggestions for improvement

Should "words of dark" be "wards of dark"? Ward being a place, or being a protection or seal.
8
8
Review of Turn the Page  
Review by Tileira
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
overall impression

It might be the music playing while I read this, but the refrain gives me the feeling of a melancholy song.

Turn the Page contrasts corrupt images ("painted lips", "lust" and "scorn") with cleansing ones ("recover lost trust" and "reparation").

The "torn" "fabric of her soul" is particularly striking: taken literally, torn fabric can't be made whole again. It can be patched over with a new piece or it can be stitched closed with a scar, but will always be weakened by the tear and carry the evidence of the repair.

favourite details

Desdemona. Shakespeare's Desdemona follows her lover with blind faith and is ultimately destroyed for it. Turn the Page captures that essence of innocence tainted, of a young woman who wandered into ruin with her eyes closed.

comments for improvement

Should "born" on the second line be "borne"?

Personally, I would also centre the poem under the image. It looks fine on a mobile browser, but on a computer screen the poem and image are badly out of alignment with each other.
9
9
Review by Tileira
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
*Noteb*Overall Impressions*Noteb*
'Veronica's Red Sweater' is a creeping tale that nutures suspicion. The narrative focuses on the titular Veronica as she anticipates the arrival of her paramour and while she waits for him, we wait for a revelation.

*Noteb*Characterisation*Noteb*
The first clue that something is not right with Veronica is in "between 1:12 and 1:19 and it was already 1:18 in the afternoon". These numbers are too precise, demonstrating an acute attention to detail or desperation.

Another indication that Veronica is not what she appears is her explanation for Sally's absence. Veronica could have given any other easy and believable excuse and a woman with even minimal respect for another woman would have given another excuse. But Veronica says something that is likely to taint Sally's reputation and it becomes clear why.

There are other little markers like the dated phrases the narrative uses, Dennis' utter lack of appealing qualities and the manager's distaste for Veronica, all of which lead up to the reveal.

*Noteb*World-building*Noteb*
The story is self contained and does not require a lot of context. A contemporary setting is implied by the refeence to selfies. The language and currency also confirm an American bank. And this is enough. The other details double up with characterisation as everything shown is shown through Veronica's eyes and described in words much like her own.

*Noteb*Other Comments*Noteb*
You could probably omit "Veronica covered for her rookie workmate by lying about where she was" because the lie is implied by the two sentences that follow.

*Noteb*Technical and Grammar*Noteb*
10
10
Review by Tileira
In affiliation with World Weavers  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
*Noteb*Overall Impressions*Noteb*
The Spinster is a wonderfully wretched tale. The story is filled with awful people and compellingly graphic descriptions in a way that reminds me of tv shows like "Tales from the Crypt" and "The League of Gentlemen", although The Spinster is not a comic story.

I can't recall where, I think it was linked in the bottom of one of the horror newsletters, but I have read the first part of 'The Spinster' before. I'm delighted more has since been written, although it ended very well at the point of Benoit coming out of the bathroom. Where the story ends now seems to be the beginning of a novella or a much longer short story still in progress, leading in to the mission Benoit has been given with the shadow of the spinsters stalking him.

*Noteb*Characterisation*Noteb*
Benoit is a terrible egotist. Before I get to the end of the first page, there is plenty of evidence for this just in his tone. He finds insult in little things as though the world ought to be doing more to humour him, while clearly expecting to be handed the short end of the stick. By the end of the story, we see a degree of sociopathy. Benoit is the kind of man who believes that if he doesn't take the short end of the stick and beat the world into giving him what he wants, he won't get what he deserves.

It's a telling touch that Benoit says "That's all you need to know" when Gert is probing about his brother. It's a defensive comment telling her to back off rather than a reticent answer stopping at "He had an accident". This is a nice hint that he's not hurt by the memory, he's afraid of it.

Gert is completely unashamed of herself. I get the impression she find satisfaction in forcing her company on Benoit. Until her identity is revealed, she is a powerfully drawn version of a public conversation many people have been trapped in: the elderly person you are certain you don't know, but who takes advantage of politeness and will not let you get on with your business. Excepting that Gert proves to have ulterior motives.

Dennard clearly has no patience for Benoit. He shows as much unspoken disdain for the lawyer as Benoit has for the oily vet.

The introduction of Regina could do with some more work. Although Benoit has met her previously and is initially distracted when he arrives, this is the first time she appears in person in the story. Benoit could provide more information by comparing her behaviour in this meeting to the last time they met or you could weave in more little details in gestures and actions.

*Noteb*World-building*Noteb*
Your world-building is well paced again, like in DOMINO EFFECT . It seeps through slowly as needed, making the story and setting one. It also crosses over into characterisation nicely, particularly because Benoit is our narrator. The things Benoit observes show the world and the other characters, but through Benoit's eyes.

There is one thing that strikes me as off: we are in Louisiana and Regina is Creole, but Dennard has to be told Benoit – a French name – is European, despite the setting. Maybe that's just Dennard's personal ignorance, but this appears to happen to establish for the reader how the name is pronounced. I think you can cut out the exposition between "hey, I thought" and "sophistication".

*Noteb*Other Comments*Noteb*
Check on "it"s. In some places, where "it" doesn't refer to the last noun, the sentances can be clarified.

"but with nothing to show for my venture makes it sting" feels like it needs a verb. Perhaps "but having nothing to...".

More on clothing: "custom tailored" is tautology. Also soles are the bottom of a shoe and can be replaced or repaired, it's the uppers that you wouldn't want to damage. So "soles" might want to be "shoes" or "loafers".

Pendants hang on chains, it's why they're called pendants, so you need to change this word out when you're talking about the brooch.

I find it Dennard's strong reaction to Benoit's story about Gert to be too strong. I understand there is a secret he doesn't want out and he might not be rational, but Benoit's manner at this point doesn't haven anything to indicate malice. He's just as confused about Dennard's question as Dennard is about the answer. I just think Benoit's story is a very strange lie if it were a lie.

*Noteb*Technical and Grammar*Noteb*
11
11
Review by Tileira
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Thank you for your review request. This isn't the sort of item I would normally choose to review, so I hope my thoughts will be helpful to you.

Masters' Origin seems to be a word play exercise, which needs to be treated a little bit different from a story in presentation and review.

The use N nouns and complex vocabulary makes Masters' Origin something like a tongue twister or brain teaser. It can be a little bit difficult to follow the flow of events and it lacks some clarity. I believe the main fix for this is simply paragraphing: if you add some line breaks at the right points, it will be easier for the eye to keep its place and the mind to process.

As a rough guide, try adding a line break whenever the subject (actor) changes. For example "... the nefarious intentions of the Masters were clear." could be the end of one paragraph and the next sentence the beginning of a new one. You should also put dialogue on separate lines.

In extension to the above, it's important that you are happy with the placement of your commas, apostrophes, and other punctuation marks. The text itself is complex, so you want to make every extra effort.

There are one or two little word tweaks which might smooth things out as well, but not many. You have worked a little bit of magic yourself here.
Examples

This was interesting to read and an unusual item to review! I'm surprised at how much you managed to cover with N words and how many of them I knew (I admit I did have to look up a couple).

If you mull on the story contained within the prose, I think it would be good to add a little bit more clarity and world to it. That might be challenging to keep up the word play, but there are a couple of things I think you could build more on.
*NoteB* What's the significance of the necropsy? What is it being performed on?
*NoteB* What's the significance of the neonate? If I have read this correctly, he isn't mentioned again after the beginning of the piece.
*NoteB* A bit of description of the village would be helpful to get a sense of time and place. It needn't be long, it could simply be an adjective here and there added to 'village' and 'villagers'.

Thank you, wow, and good luck *Bigsmile*
-Tilly
12
12
Review by Tileira
Rated: E | (4.0)
Good morning! *Bigsmile*

I'm sorry that you weren't able to complete World Weavers' Championship  round 2. I'm glad you gave your best effort you get through them though and I hope things have settled down for you.

Although you don't qualify for a prize, I want to make sure everyone gets feedback on their work. I’ve scored the round on a 100pt scale, judging each prompt separately and then the whole. Because you only completed 3 days though, I will adjust these scores accordingly to give you a better idea of how you did.

General (8/9)

Content (7/10)

Overall Impressions (10/20)

I want to thank you for taking part in round 2 and wish you luck for the future *Bigsmile*

-love Tilly
13
13
Review by Tileira
Rated: E | (4.0)
Title: Homework on Christmas?

Setting: There is not a lot of description in this piece, but that suits the style in which it is witten.

Character Development:
Both the student and the teacher are shown well in this. Extra brownie points for giving the teacher a personaliyty
On one side it's easy enough to see how pleased the student is with his excuse. It's emphasised further by his excited continuation while the teacher tries to interrupt him.
Shifting focus to the teacher shows first her exasperation with the child who insist on continuing this ridiculous story, and then her complete disbelief at his second attempt.

Historical Referencing:
Casual reference of cheques and cars set it in the modern era, but no more description is given to it. A little more would make it clearer, but then I don't think that would suit the style of the piece.

Plot:
It's all about watching the excuse snowball, and yet knowing that's going to fail. Then in the end he discards it again for something far simpler, and yet even more ridiculous. That extra touch about Christmas at the end is fantastic.

Grammatical:
The second sentance is a bit messy. It needs restructuring to make it a bit easier to follow. Also 'off' has been spelt as 'of'.
Fresh quotes should also be out on a new line.

General:
I would move comments like "I was doing great" onto a fresh line as well. It gives it the comic emphasis it needs.

Personal Opinion:
^^ You know, some of my favourites in this contest have been the excuses that could not possibly work, because they are the most ingenius and the funniest.
This is one of them.

Comment in a Box Score:
4.0
14
14
Review of Bagged Improv  
Review by Tileira
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Setting
Setting it at the beginning of a university exam, was a more interesting choice than simply setting it in a high school. The past that the professor has with being mugged on campus is a thoughtful touch.
Character Development
Gina jumps from tears, to anger, to triumph in such a short time. The professor and the friend who helped her cheat are also very nicely done. The fact that the professor is a nice woman is another difference that sets this entry aside form the others.
Historical Referencing
Again, modern era, and no particualr description of the setting to point it out the time period beyond the existance of the university and exam.
Plot
Excellent. It was a very imaginative excuse, and then having Oliver deliver her some essays that she'd paid for was another wonderful stroke of genius.
Grammatical
I didn't notice any grammatical errors so if there is one lurking in there, it hasn't damaged the quality of the piece.
General

Personal Opinion
I loved this one. The detail, the style, the ending, the characterisation...
Comment in a Box Score
5.0
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