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1
1
for entry "* Basic Training...
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Thank you for sending me this to read and review. While I hate reviewing, I do love and and I love the Army, so I'll do it. *Bigsmile*

Interestingly, I swear I didn't know you were in the military. Did I know this and just forgot? Totally possible, but I'd feel bad if that was the case. Then again, I forget most of the vets on here. I think I can name like 2, but I know way more have told me. I hate that. I WANT to remember who is a vet! Stupid explosion making me forget things super important to me! *Pthb* Anyway, feel free to remind me later if/when I forget again and thank you for your service! *Heart* *Hug1**hug**Hug2* *Heart*

I love when folks post what contest they are writing something for! Though I regret not also typing out the name in case the owner later makes the contest Private. What was the prompt on this? Was it just to talk about your Basic Training experiences? Seems like that's a bit narrow. I tend to post the prompt...and any special rules like I can't use a word that has the letter R or I can only use visual descriptions or it can't be longer than 500 words or whatever so that the reader understands why I made some of the choices I did. I hate when they are like, "You shouldn't use the word (fill in the blank) because no one knows what it means." Well, I had to. It was in the rules, so there. *Pthb* *Laugh* Anyway, just my opinion...this doesn't impact your rating. *Wink*

"I did some research and discovered one of the best background training for beginning that pursuit was Medical Lab Tech." That should be "...one of the best background trainings..." I did look it up, just to be sure. *Wink* When I'm not sure and haven't gotten to Google yet (or am too lazy to), I simplify the sentence. "...one of the best trainings..." If that doesn't help, I substitute a word that I am sure of. "...one of the best dogs..." Yep, should be "trainings," though spellcheck disagrees. That's why I went to Google to make sure I just didn't know that "training" didn't have a plural. It does when it is a countable thing and to me, since there are different types of training to choose from, they are countable...thus trainings. *Bigsmile*

On an unrelated note, I went at 34. Sucked, huh? All those babies running around telling everyone to grow up...*Rolling*

It's funny that you remember having moment of realization that you'd signed your life away. I, on the other hand, remember lying in bed at my first duty station with a giant smile on my face thinking, "They let me be a Soldier! SUCKERS!!!" *Rolling* I was just so proud and excited. But then, I'd wanted to join most of my life. You made a faster decision (like it didn't take you 15 yrs. to finally get signed up) so that may be the difference in our reactions. lol

"For the next couple years, I would be told when to get up, when to eat, when to go to bed." I did some digging to be sure I was right (which is why I hate reviewing--it takes too long to do all the research to be sure I'm right), but this should be "For the next couple of year..." Yes, you can just say "couple years," but it's considered informal and since this is for a contest, I think you should include the "of." Now, if it were a part of dialogue, by all means, drop that "of." *Wink* As for the rest of that sentence, it seems weird to me. You list 3 things without an "and" or "etc." or anything. It seems strange to me. Personally, I'd add "etc." at the end because putting "and" between the 2nd and 3rd items suggests that's all you were told what to do. But it's personal choice. I assume most folks know it's not that simple...I assume. *Wink*

Funny that you mention the difference in adjusting between the younger folks and you. When I was at Officer Candidate School (which I couldn't graduate because I was injured, so I ended up enlisted), I noticed that the people that came from college to the Army (which required us to go to Basic before OCS so if we couldn't graduate, we were still in the Army--only service that does that, as far as I know) anyway, those folks straight from college dealt much better with all the ridiculous rules and pickiness of training because they'd just come from Basic which was also just a bunch of ridiculous rules and pickiness. But they did quite poorly in the time-management part and generally getting stuff done because they didn't know all the tricks or what was truly valued. But those who had been in and were going from being enlisted to being officers, they really struggled with being treated like trainees again and sometimes quit, not recognizing that it was just a temporary bit of insanity that would lead to a much better career in the end. Yet, they thrived in the time-management and getting stuff done parts.

In Basic, I found that the older but not oldest folks, those in their late 20's fared the worst mentally. The 18-year-olds didn't mind being bossed around as much as them, but the old folks like me took it all as a game, just something to be played, not taken personally. The drill sergeants used to make fun of my name regularly. Whatever. I don't care. They did it to the 19-year-old guy and he took it fine as well. But when they did it to the 28-year-old, she broke down in tears. Seriously?!? It's not a big deal. That age group tended to also struggle the most with things being stupid. I figured it's supposed to be stupid. People are stupid. Just listen, do your best, and you'll graduate and move on. Other folks in the middle ages (Hahaha!) just couldn't deal as well, trying to make things make sense. Trying to reason things out. Don't bother. Part of the stress is that you don't understand. THAT is the reason--to stress you out because you don't understand. Just do it. lol

I LOVE your "God First" section where you wrote verses in your USAF manual! Awesome! Were there any times you were afraid you'd get caught and get punished? If so, consider adding that. I think it adds to the "God First" theme of that part because you were willing to risk punishment.

The job training after our Basic Training was called AIT (Advanced Individual Training). They always said folks found God in Basic and lost Him in AIT because if you didn't go to church in Basic, you had to stay and clean, plus folks just tended to turn toward Him in the times of stress. But in AIT there was more freedom so those little 18-year-olds just lost their minds. *Pthb* I remember one of my instructors telling me that I needed to get out of the barracks more and enjoy my freedom while I could (before I graduated and left). To me, I was there to learn and study, so I did a lot of that. I was #1 in my class. When I went out one weekend, we had a quiz the next Monday and I got an 89, dropping me to #3. I was so angry at myself...and at the instructor who told me to enjoy my time there.

Sorry...this is a review of your story, not a time to reminisce. FOCUS, SCHNUJO! *Headbang*

"If they happened, we were to leave the short chain and key with the sergeants." Should be, "If THAT happened..." Those chains sound like our dog tag chains. Except we weren't allowed to keep our keys on them. They broke too often during training.

I like the story about folks being told not to take the chains off their necks, but the drawers being so low. I bet that was a favorite moment of every drill sergeant every cycle. *Laugh*

"Well, I another thing I can't remember is if the position I am about to write about was actually called "Academic Monitor" or what." I assume you caught that extra "I" that shouldn't be there. *Wink*

"(I am not sure how I got that position but I did. I bet I volunteered. LOL" You forgot to end your quotation marks. *Wink*

I like the story about the study sessions. Good for you for now bowing down to their complaints! Congratulations on everyone passing and on your ribbon or whatever. Woohoo!

I'm really enjoying reading this, BTW. *Bigsmile* It's fun to see what other people's experiences were like.

Interesting that they gave you a different blanket. I guess we were all okay with wool...you know, it itched and was annoying, but nothing serious, thankfully. But that certainly sucked for you! I was told to deny all allergies, but I was allergic to latex. By the time I confessed it, I was already at Basic and they just accepted it. lol My recruiter was right. They didn't send me home at that point.

Our barracks were also bugged. I guess some things never change. *Laugh*

That REALLY SUCKS if you lost Honor Grad because of that one thing! SO SORRY! Yeah, I would have been really upset, myself! (I review as I read, so I don't know the ending yet. lol)

"Anyways, I so wanted to receive Honor Grad, I was tempted to ask for it in Jesus' Name but I knew that was not the thing to do." That should be "anyway." "Anyways" is slang and generally should only be used in dialogue (or in your blog if you aren't submitting it to a contest *Laugh*). "Name" doesn't need to be capitalized here...or in the next bit. That isn't part of His name. *Wink* Though I'm not sure what you mean here. Do you just mean ending your prayer with "...in Jesus' name"? I don't think it works like that. (Totally my philosophical view--nothing that will impact your rating.) Those aren't magic words. I believe that praying in His name refers to asking for things that are in God's will. If it's His will, you will be given it. Like asking God to bless your food, that's probably in His will, so asking it in Jesus' name will most likely make it so. But asking for something that isn't in His will won't do anything, even if you say "...in Jesus' name." But I do totally respect your attitude about praying for being Honor Grad! I probably need to add in more about if it's HIS will when I ask for stuff. I need to be more open about accepting Him not doing something because it's not the right choice in the big picture, even though it seems perfectly obvious to me that it's the right thing. *Blush* And very good point about Jesus having restraint in the desert. Yeah, I need to do that more...have restraint, I mean. Good points made and thank you!

That is really cool that you could see yourself being given Honor Grad! I'm not sure I've experienced that before. Interesting!

"I ended up in tears because of some folks who had gotten really upset about me getting the ribbon when she did not." I'M SO SORRY!!! How horrible! I'm glad she was gracious about it, but people can be so mean! *Hug1**hug**Hug2*

Thank you for sharing this! I really hope that you do write down more for your kids and grandkids. I wish I had stories about my father in the military. He died when I was 14 (not military related...that I know of) and since he'd gotten out before I was born (he was 40 when I was born), I never heard any stories. Now it makes me sad. DEFINITELY WRITE MORE DOWN FOR THEM!!! *Bigsmile*

Anyway, the 4 star rating is for the grammar dings, not for a difference in philosophical belief or the fact that you were in the Air Force instead of the Army. *Rolling* I do appreciate you sharing your stories. What fun! Thank you! *Hug1**hug**Hug2*


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
2
2
for entry "* Am I A Writer?
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
I've never done a review for a blog post. There goes my comments on characters and setting and such. *Laugh*

I appreciate and respect that you turn to God when you need answers. I need to do that more. But I also respect your ability to question yourself about whether the answer is from God or from you. I think that's a very valid question that is extremely important to ask, yet equally (if not more) difficult to answer.

I think it's interesting that you ask God what to do and He says "Write." But then you ask yourself what you want to write. Admittedly, this is a recollection of how things go, not a video, so perhaps you did ask Him. But I also think that while many folks ask God what to do, once we think we have an answer, some of us don't press Him for further details. We just set about doing it our way. This probably isn't ideal. Then again, at what point does He say, "Stop asking Me questions! Just do it!" I just don't know. *Laugh*

It's sweet that you wanted to write something meaningful and useful for others. You're so wonderful! *Hug1**hug**Hug2*

Alright, this is a review, so "I also had worked a Twelve Step program..." That seems a tad awkward to me. I think "I had also worked..." sounds more natural. Normally, in a blog I wouldn't think twice about it, but you asked for a review, so there you have it. lol

Side note about the washing cup story, I always wash the outside of my cups first. *Laugh* Also, apparently I need to read my Bible more because I certainly don't recall this story. Whatever. No surprise. Bad Schnujo!

I like that you turned to Google for inspiration to pursue your dream. Awesome! But who was this mysterious WdC member?!? Inquiring minds want to know! I mean, I probably don't know them, but still, I want to know who we have to thank for you being here! You, know, besides thanking God, of course. *Wink*

"He just encourage me to join a community..." That should be "encouraged."

It's awesome how you hadn't even mentioned writing and he said to join WdC! Or...was it "He" who said to join it. *Think* You know they say about God speaking to us through others... *Wink*

That's super awesome that you wrote a psalm! *Heart* And also awesome that you got that e-mail. I don't know that we still get that anymore. Then again, I have a TBI and it was a lot worse when I uploaded my first item, so I shouldn't say for sure, but I don't think so. Do you still have that e-mail? It's cool that you posted a pic! *Smile*

Well done! I enjoyed reading that and it gives me some fun/interesting insight into you, your past, and how blessed we are to have you here! Thank you for sharing! *Hug1**hug**Hug2*

The slightly lowered rating is for the awkward sentence and the missing "d" that I mentioned. The rest is all just personal opinion. *Wink*


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
3
3
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (3.5)
Hi! I'm here to review your story for "Show, Don't Tell Contest. As you know, these comments are my own opinion and may or may not reflect the opinion of the public at large. Choose what you find helpful and discard the rest. *Wink*

I really appreciate that you have enlarged the font. I try to remember to do that as well. It makes readers much happier. lol Good choice!

Your item title is "It Happened on Black Friday," but then when you write your actual story, you have a title of "It Happened During the Holiday Season" at the top. I found this difference a little confusing. At first I assumed there would be another heading or title farther down, but there wasn't, so that's when I got confused.

Since your main character is thinking at the very beginning, consider having her thoughts in italics. That's a pretty traditional way of showing a person is thinking. *Wink*

"I guess at one time, mall administration contemplated putting a door back there to facilitate holiday traffic, but it never happened, at it hadn’t when last looked." The last part, "...at it hadn't when last looked" seems to be a bit off. Maybe you meant, "...at least it hadn't when I last looked."

"“Jayson,” I screamed, “fancy seeing you here on Black Friday.”" Screaming their name doesn't seem congruent with "fancy seeing you here..." to me. Maybe ""Jayson," I called, "fancy seeing you here..."" or ""Jayson," I screamed, "I can't believe it's you! Fancy seeing you here..."" Just my opinion...

"By the way, Ruby, I didn’t know you were here, you hate crowds too." You have a run-on sentence here. Consider either a semi-colon or a period after "here." I also think you might need a comma after "crowds," but I could be wrong about that. *Wink*

"So, the first I decide to shop a Corners everybody else decides Corner’s is the place to shop. It’s a wonder They’re still here." This again seems off. I think you might have meant, "So the first time I decide to shop at Corners..." Also, the first time you mention "Corners," you don't use an apostrophe, but the second time you do. *Wink* Also, you shouldn't capitalize "they're" in this sentence. And I was a little confused when you said that it was a wonder they were still here since you were talking about the crowds. It took me reading the sentence about 3 times before I realized you meant it was a wonder the mall was still there, not the people. lol That should probably be clarified. *Wink*

“Yeah, the store across the courtyard has been since last year at this time.” I assume you meant that the store across the courtyard has been closed since last year, but you were just talking about how the mall was still open, so this leads the reader to think the store across the courtyard is still open, but that doesn't make sense because why would you specifically point that out. lol I think you just need the word "closed" added to make it all totally understood.

"A sudden chill chases up my spine and my palms display a cold sweat." I LOVE THIS!!! You don't just say a chill runs up your spine--so blah, so normal, so uninteresting. You say a chill CHASES up your spine. Awesome! That is a fabulous choice here! I'd actually like to see more descriptions that step out of the bounds of normal into uniquely yours. You've now shown my you have this talent, so definitely use it! I love it! *Bigsmile*

"...I couldn’t help but go forward or do a facer right here..." Another great choice with "facer!" Wonderful word choice!

"...I threw hands up in front of my face to protect it, from what I don’t know, that door isn’t there." You have another run-on sentence. Either use a semi-colon or a period after "know."

"Halloween anyone? My anxiety level just ratcheted up out of reach and I quaked. I thought I was going to be sick, my heart was beating so loudly that even a ghost could hear it." More fun with the words--awesome! I love the "Halloween anyone" bit the most, I think. lol But ratcheting up out of reach is a good description for anxiety and I've certainly never heard anything described as "...so loudly that even a ghost could hear it." *Bigsmile* I'm glad to see you using your creativity here! Though you do have another run-on sentence. Again, use either a semi-colon or a period after "sick."

"...at the end of wide sidewalk and two men appeared..." I assume that should be "...at the end of a (or the) wide sidewalk..."

DOH! I just realized you changed from present tense to past tense somewhere along the way. I totally do that, too! I can NOT write in present tense. I always slip into past tense. lol People tell me to pick one. I did. Just because I didn't stick to it... *Laugh* Anyway, at least you're not the only one who does this. lol Definitely proofread for tense when you are writing in present tense. *Wink*

"...and two men appeared,—the only thing I was sure about was they were indeed men—and they were currently standing in front of an empty store, but I couldn’t tell much more." I love dashes. *Bigsmile* Anyway, don't use a comma before the dash after "appeared." Also, for some reason there's a huge space between the end of this sentence and the beginning of the next "Although I feared what might happen..."

"The other guy tensed and, oh, my God, everywhere." What a fabulous description! I LOVE IT! However, just after this it seems you hit the Enter key as the next sentence starts on another line and I'm not sure it should...or if you want it to, at least hit the Enter key twice. lol This whole paragraph literally made me laugh out loud. Very well done!

"...I broke into a peal of hysterical screeching laughter, then screamed and . . . gone. They just disappeared." Shouldn't they disappear and THEN you scream? That seems more natural to me. Otherwise, why are you laughing, then suddenly screaming if nothing new happened?

"I was to busy running to care..." That should be "too busy."

"I get into my car. Slam the door and push the button igniting the engine." Unlike the run-on sentences before, "Slam the door..." isn't a complete sentence. lol But if you just attach it to "I get into my car, slam the door, and push the button igniting the engine," then you have a full sentence. *Wink* Btw, I love the part about the button igniting the engine. Great description!

"But How. I drove like a mad person, turned out of the parking lot, and then . . ." That should have a question mark, "But how?"

"I thought I could buy my sister’s gift at the same time and kill two birds and all that." lol I like that.

"But as Black Friday drew closer, my anxiety level had ratcheted up so high..." Your anxiety has already ratcheted earlier. Pick another descriptor. You've proven you have a way with words, so I know you can find another way to say this. *Wink*

"It seems Corner’s Novelties, the only store still doing business at Conderson’s in the light of last year’s tragic events, Mr. Carlson, what is your take on the recent spike?" This seems like you were going to say one thing and then ended up saying another because this sentence isn't quite right. Also, I thought Corner's was the mall name, not a shop name. Maybe mention the whole name or say it's a shop to clarify that. *Wink*

I feel like a news anchor wouldn't call the person they were interviewing an ignoramus...or at least not more than once as they'd be fired. lol

"...when those two kids were brutally shot by some so-called hate crime." You aren't shot BY a hate crime. *Wink*

"...those two kids were gay or not is immaterial, what is first and for most is they were human..." I'd put a period after "immaterial." Also, that should be "foremost," not "for most."

"It had indeed been a brutal crime..." You forgot to indent this paragraph. Also, it's a different color red. Was that on purpose? If it's because you want to say that this is a true story, then I'd put a space between this paragraph and the last. Also, you just said in the paragraph before that it was Ruby's brother and his lover. No need to say it twice, but I'd erase it from the paragraph above and keep it in this final paragraph.

Very nice story--lots of strong, interesting images, but you definitely need to proofread. *Wink* I know, I hate proofreading, myself. Plus, I usually don't have time because I'm turning it in at the deadline. *Laugh* Anyway, proofread and especially pay attention to run-on sentences and to changes in tense. *Smile* The rating is a reflection of the number of errors, not your skill as a writer. You certainly have talent, so bravo! Keep it up!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
4
4
Review of This Era  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Thanks for sharing! Here are some of my thoughts and opinions. Take the ones you agree with and ignore the rest as they are my opinions, not anything else. *Wink*

"I hate this era with all its communication way." I'd consider "ways" instead of "way" because there are several types of communication these days, not just one. But I like how you start out straight to the point. I know what your opinion is and I can choose to read on or not. Nice idea.

"That you believe you do not need to see them often." This isn't a complete sentence. Consider removing "That" and you have a complete sentence.

"In the past you would think for days about a letter you would send to someone, feeling each word coming out of you." I like this idea. *Smile*

"Taking all of your heart out as its getting out." I'm not sure I like seeing "out" twice here. I mean, it sort of works, but it also sort of rubs me the wrong way. Consider playing around with other words and see what you think.

"You might stay for months to see them once." OH YEAH! I forgot about that! Thanks for the reminder! *Bigsmile*

Thank you for sharing your work. I opened your portfolio and was VERY surprised at how prolific a writer you are. WOW! You are definitely not fooling around! lol Keep up the great work! And welcome to WdC!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
5
5
Review of GP Pranked  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (5.0)
I LOVE IT! THANK YOU!!! Though apparently you saw my original message that didn't include credit for Emily ~ On Vacay!. If you don't mind adding her to the list of folks who created this game, I'd appreciate it. *Smile*

WHAT FUN! Thank you for making this!
6
6
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Fun little ending to the Bardstown Mystery! I'm intrigued by the time capsule being empty next year. I wonder if that's the prompt for then. *Think*

Anyway, nice job, but there were a few typos and such that you might want to correct before judging. *Wink*

"It is there that he got to know about the Time Capsule that lay within the "Retired, Yet Valuable Books Storage Room". Having exhausted all other avenues he concluded that the map must be in the Capsule but he found the room to be secured and the key kept somewhere in the mayoral champers." Unless you are British, in which case, I'm not sure of the rule, but in American English, periods ALWAYS go inside the quotation marks. Question marks and exclamation points go inside or outside, depending on their usage, but periods (and commas) ALWAYS go inside so it should be "...within the "Retired, Yet Valuable Books Storage Room.""

Also, I'm pretty sure you need a comma after "avenues" because "Having exhausted all other avenues..." is sort of an introduction to that sentence. I wouldn't capitalize "capsule" in the part that says, "...the map must be in the capsule, (add comma) but he found..." And I assume the last word in that sentence should be "chambers," not "champers." *Wink*

"...he became paranoid that when the Capsule was opened on the “20th Decade of the Town’s Founding”, the map..." Maybe I'm wrong, but again, I wouldn't capitalize "capsule." Also, the comma goes inside the quotation marks. Commas ALWAYS go inside quotation marks.

"He also learned on that on Founders Day Mrs Stone intended to close the library at 4:30pm, go home for dinner, and then returned just after 6pm..." Pretty sure you need a comma after "Day." Also, you are talking about the future, she intended to close the library and go home, but then suddenly the past with "then returned." I'd just change it to "...then return..." I'm too lazy to google to see, but I think the pm's might need a space after the time, but I'm not sure.

"His plan was to hold Mrs Stone captive and force the mayor to open the door; then he would claim the map from the capsule." Nice use of the semi-colon here. A lot of folks don't do that correctly, but I'm pretty sure you did. *Smile*

"...the Mayor’s ex-wife, Crystal was his late stepmother’s best friend and her daughter, Sasha was Parker’s brother’s fiancée." I'm pretty sure you need a comma after both Crystal and Sasha because you can leave out the names and still know who is being talked about. (Yeah, I'm not giving technical reasons here. Sorry. These are just the rules I use to know when to use them. lol)

"...Crystal’s rusty Toyota Station wagon sometime after the robbery." Don't capitalize "station" here.

"(On the day of the drop off she was in a hurry to use the library restroom, this is why she was running)" The comma isn't strong enough here. These are 2 complete sentences. You can either use a semi-colon instead or you can change the sentence to "...to use the library restroom, thus why she was running." Also, you need a period at the end of running--inside the parentheses, of course.

"Their scheme would have worked but it was discovered the mayor had key had been somehow misplaced..." The mayor's key had been somehow misplaced? Is that was you were trying to say? I think you got distracted during this sentence or started to say it 1 way, then changed your mind, perhaps. lol

"A year later the key was found, capsule opened by the mayor and everyone was shocked to find it empty; someone had stolen its contents, but just whom is a whole other story." Intriguing ending! I really like it!

Nice story--you introduced characters that made sense and didn't confuse us. Good job for only 19 sentences. My only real criticism is that you obviously need to proof read. Even if you don't know all the comma rules and such, proofreading would have (hopefully) caught some silly errors. If you did proofread, then I suggest what other say--put it down for a while, then come back and read it out loud slowly. Read what the words say, not what they are supposed to say. *Smile*

Good job and good luck in the contest!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
7
7
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Howdy! You know the deal--take what you like, ignore the rest of my review. lol

I found this because someone was asking me if there was something on here that talked about how to write a limerick. I knew there had to be. *Smile*

Your intro is funny and I appreciate that you ensure folks know the proper pronunciation. Since there are so many foreigners on this site, that's a great idea.

I also like that there is some history here. I wouldn't have though to do a bit of history if I'd written this. Great choice!

Personally, when you start, "It is a five-line poem..." I would start a new paragraph since you are no longer talking about the history, but that's me. *Wink*

My 2 biggest complaints are about the explanation and the lack of active examples. Every example except 1 is now Invalid. *Frown* As for the explanation, you talk about "anapestic trimeters" and "anapestic dimeters" without saying what those are. I was hoping we could link to your item for her activity about writing limericks, but we can't if it's not updated and a bit more explanation is given.

Over all, this is a really great item! If you just give a bit better explanation of how to write one and have some current examples, this would totally be a 5-star item! If you make the changes and want it to be rerated, let me know and I'll be happy to.

Great job, overall. I hope to see some changes, but you certainly added things I wouldn't have thought to. Nicely done. Thank you for sharing this and keep up the good work.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
8
8
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Sorry for this late review! Congratulations on placing in the "Show, Don't Tell Contest! Great work!

I like that you open with dialogue we don't quite get, but then do with the next bit so we aren't confused and frustrated.

Good job dropping the g when she's talking. We totally do that. Nice bit of reality in the dialogue.

It was a tough call to decide what was a mistake and what you don't know because English isn't your native language. However, since your English is usually nearly perfect, I decided some of the mistakes might be either that you didn't proofread well enough or that your brain knew what you were saying, so it read what it thought you said instead of what you actually wrote. lol For example, "Why on hellish earth did she decide to take the car that day was a good idea?" It's like you combined 2 sentences here. "...decide to take the car that day" and "...decide taking the car that day was a good idea." Not sure which you meant, but the sentence you have is wrong. But I can't poke fun. I've combined sentences plenty of times, myself. *Wink*

"She touched her pearl necklace, tickling one grain after another." Very creative description here!

"A jingle brought her phone to life." Another great sentence. It's things like this that caused you to do so well in the contest. *Wink*

"Sometimes she wondered if a 24h mind-probing program was included in the contract when she had signed it." Hilarious! I've felt that way before. lol Though it's scary at the time. *Wink* Anyway, you should have "24-hour" (or 24 hour--honestly, I'm not 100% sure which) instead of "24h." Some people also say you can't use numbers less than 100 if they aren't written out (twenty-four hour), but I'm not so hardcore. *Wink*

“Unknown number? Go fuck yourself! And those marketing dimwits say they know their customers like the back of their hands? They’re always calling at the wrongest fucking time!” To me, this is something she would say in her head, not out loud. Most of us don't talk to ourselves quite this much...usually. lol I'd expect this to be internal dialogue, thus in italics (which some smart guy told me were invented in Italy *Bigsmile* ) and without the quotation marks.

"I’ve just had it fixed yesterday!" That should probably be, "I just had it fixed yesterday!"

"I’m not buying any— What the?" You need ellipses after "the" as in "I'm not buying any--What the...?" Or you could probably do another dash.

"Things were getting better by the minute, and every minute passed she was going to be a lot later." Try, "...and as every minute passed..." Though technically she's not a "lot later" with every passing minute. She's only a minute later, but whatever. I'm just being picky. Plus, maybe a minute late to her job IS really late.

"A shiver ran through her spine." Too normal. Too blah. 'Davide' it up some. *Bigsmile* Put your own spin on it. You're much more creative that that boring little sentence. *Bigsmile*

"...one of those stupid videos kids put up on youtube?" Both the Y and the T are capitalized in YouTube. Little things like this cost you a higher spot in my votes, no offense. *Heart*

"She looked around. It looked like no phones were pointed at her." Nice detail. Totally normal for her to look around to see if phones were pointing at her. Good job.

"She held back a cry as her nails dug pierced the skin of her cheek." Again, this cost you in my vote. It was like you either started to say her nails dug into her skin then decided to say they pierced her skin, but didn't erase the word "dug." But now as I read it again, I wonder if maybe you aren't just missing a comma and you meant to say that they dug and pierced her skin. But did they really? I believe they dug into her cheek. But did she really draw blood? That's pretty severe. Maybe, but I'd be more likely to believe that she just dug into the top layer or layers of skin. It's pretty big to pierce your own skin, especially on your face.

"The skull on his jacket grinned at her, like making fun of her shock at discovering Roscoe had dug himself out of the dirt and across the ocean." Holy cow! What a sentence! This is AWESOME! Really, a lot of the rest of this story isn't written as well as this bit. If they whole thing was like this (with few errors), you would have TOTALLY taken 1st place! This is the writing that I am absolutely in awe of when I read your stuff! I don't know how, but work on making more of your writing like this and you'll be famous one of these days! *Heart* *Heart* *Heart*

"Oh? All high and mighty now? A good paycheck clears a conscience fast!" Nice. It gives me a feel for his character and their relationship and is a good description without being normal. I especially like the bit about the paycheck clearing the conscience fast. Well done.

"That’s why you don’t need friends anymore, uh?" Uh is more of a grunt or, more commonly, a place holder when you don't know what to say like, "Uh, yeah, I guess so." Here I think you are looking for confirmation (well, not really, but the meaning of looking for confirmation), so I'd expect "huh" instead of "uh." Yeah, stupid English sounds we make. lol I'm not surprised about this mistake and it didn't really count against you for me because I know you aren't a native speaker and this isn't something that you normally learn in English grammar classes. lol

"You know, that school you paid with our money!" I'd italicize "our" because I feel like he probably emphasized that word.

"Do you have the slightest idea of how they dig all those precious minerals to keep churning out those batteries?" Interesting! I never thought about that. But I did once meet a guy who lived on solar, but had no power at night because batteries were bad for the environment. I refrained from asking him if he thought the production of solar panels was a completely clean and toxin free process. lol

"Do it and tomorrow’s newspaper will have a big nice title about an ex-eco terrorist blowing herself right in the middle of a bottling, dying a glorious death to free the world from those stinky diesel engines." First, "big nice title" seems odd. We'd say "nice big title." Also, I'm pretty sure there should be a comma after "nice" in that (or after "big" as you have it written). Also, maybe "bottling" is a term used in Europe, but if I didn't know she was in a traffic jam, I'd have no idea what this meant.

"The scratch on her cheek burned and Ruby reached for a tissue to stop the sweat." Nice touch. She would, no doubt, be sweating and it would, no doubt, burn. Good job.

"...but the same trick works well with smartphones too." Pretty sure you need a comma before "too."

"Roscoe waved a white sheet of paper like a conqueror celebrating a victory." Great sentence! However, it either needs to be attached to the speaking above or there needs to be a space after that paragraph to have this set apart. Not sure which is the correct or most correct way, but I do know that you can't have it like it is--separated, but not with an extra space between. lol

"Ruby fell on the seat; her eyes stinging. “Why are you doing this to me?”" Again, you need a space between his speaking and where this begins.

"So open your ears wide open, stay awhile and listen.” I like how you have the font enlarged some. Us older people REALLY appreciate that! *Laugh* However, it seems that you don't have the "n" on "listen" as well as the final period and closing quotation marks also enlarged or colored. lol

Again, congratulations on placing 3rd. There were quite a few entries, so you did well! I hope my comments taught you something, encouraged you, and make you want to do more and do better. *Smile* You are very talented, in case I haven't mentioned that enough times in our friendship. *Laugh* Keep at it! You have a lot to share with the world!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
9
9
Review of Push  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Congratulations on winning 2nd place in "Show, Don't Tell Contest! How wonderful! I'm so glad you entered!

Nice tag line or whatever that thing is called under the title. Sometimes that's the hardest part for me.

These are just some suggestions of things I do. By no means should you feel obligated. I like to put my stuff (when I remember to lol) in 4 pt font since so many people on this site are older. *Wink* Also, at the top, I will put a note about the thing I wrote. I'll include the contest, prompt, any special rules (which often helps with the "why" questions such as "Why some some of the stuff in red?" for this story lol), and I'll even put if I won the contest (or got 2nd, as in the case of your story). Personally, I put it in light grey writing, but I've seen others do it in a dropnote. Some folks put it at the end. I prefer the beginning. You can also include anything interesting about the process or inspiration or whatever. It's just a thought. I like to know why people wrote things and it's fun to go back and see that something I now think is terrible actually placed in a contest. lol

"Ruby groaned at the sea of brake lights glowing into the infinity of gray asphalt." Wonderful description here! It's things like this that set you apart from the other entries. *Wink*

"Great, another rush hour wreck." This seems like an inner comment, so I'd suggest it be in italics.

"Her plan was to be a blushing bride. Her reality was being a mousy secretary with an expanding waistline and a dumpy car..." I'm being picky here, because your stuff is good enough I can be picky. *Wink* Anyway, I like the contrast between the blushing bride and mousy secretary, but you include more about the secretary. Maybe add 2 other things that make her life she envisioned different from the way it is now.

"...squeeze his huge king-cab pick-up truck in the space." That should be pickup. Maybe you can remember because the word is fully connected like the bed of a pickup is connected to the cab. Pick-up is like a guy who uses a pick-up line. *Wink* The dash in the word is sort of like the guy reaching out to the girl he wants to pick up. *Bigsmile*

"...causing a symphony of screeching brakes and blaring horns. An ambulance siren wailed behind her, followed by a honking fire truck rocking her sedan in a whirlwind from the emergency lane." Again, things like this are what set you apart. I love the "symphony of screeching brakes and blaring horns" and the "whirlwind from the emergency lane." The only thing I don't care for is the siren wailing. All sirens wail. I'm pretty sure you're more creative than that. What can you come up with? *Smile*

"The sign bobbed in the rear window, as if nodding at her." I really like this part. You could have stopped at the sign bobbing, but when you add that it's as if it's nodding, that really punches this up.

""Who is this?” Ruby asked." I want to see more of how she's feeling. The way you have it here, it seems totally normal, like a friend calling and she can't place their name. If she just had some stranger in front of her telling her to answer her phone and now some other stranger is referencing her fiance who left her 3 yrs ago, I think she'd be showing some emotions--confusion, fear, annoyance? What's she feeling? Show me. The same goes for 2 lines down when she's asking about what danger because he was just a software engineer. Is she annoyed with this person or scared or thinking this is a prank or that he's crazy?

"Ruby shifted in her seat. How did this person know about that?" I like that you showed us that she's shifting in her seat. Show us more.

"“My fiancé disappeared,” Ruby said, hoping her voice projected a calm that masked her shaking." Her shaking seems a bit unexpected to me here. Not because she shouldn't be, but because you didn't bring us up to it earlier by showing us other things. I'd expect her to only start shaking now. I'm not saying that's what you should say. But put in more before this to show us what she's feeling so when you say she's shaking, I'm not like, "Really?"

"...and your safe as long as you stay apart." That should be "you're" instead of "your."

"Ruby paused, letting her foot off the brake as traffic inched forward again." Nice reminder of where she is without taking us completely out of the story.

"Ruby’s heart skipped a beat." You can do better. *Wink* You're way more creative that that. *Smile*

"“I have to take it back if you ask one more question. Just say this: Yes or no?”" That would totally kill me not to be able to ask questions! lol I don't think I could do it. They'd just pop out without my meaning to. lol Though on a side note, once he's put it in, not sure how he'd take it back if she did ask a question.

"Perhaps it was time to move on - with a financial advisor, of course." That should be a dash instead of a hyphen. You used a dash before, so apparently you know how. I don't know how to do a dash on WdC. lol But 2 hyphens are acceptable as a dash -- if you can't make a real one. I really like that she's not planning to buy a big house or whatever. She's going to be smart. I really like that!

Lovely story with a sweet ending. Good job and, again, congratulations! Thank you for entering the contest!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
10
10
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Congratulations on winning 1st place in "Show, Don't Tell Contest! Just a thought, but I put a note in light grey at the top of most of my writing. I write what contest it was for, the prompt, and if I won. You can also explain why part is in red...or you can just take that away now that the contest is over. You should definitely edit this and note that you won 1st place. *Smile*

You have such a wonderful way with words! We all thought you did a fantastic job! Congratulations! I love how you open with Roscoe drumming his fingers to the beat of the radio. And you add fun details like saying his car is worth $500 "...even with a full tank of gas" and saying if he donated his car to charity, he'd just end up with it again when he went to get another car. Those are great additions!

I'm being picky here, but your writing warrants it. There's not tons of giant issues to address. *Wink* Anyway, in the 2nd paragraph, you say "in front of him" twice in two sentences. I think it's fine to just say the car "squeezed in" the second time since we know what's going on. Also, the fact that he punches the steering wheel seems a bit out of place to me. I know he's hot, but drumming his fingers sounded like he was enjoying himself and fairly relaxed. Where did this reaction come from? Perhaps build a bit of anger into his body language before this or show us that what we are seeing isn't to be interpreted as him being relaxed on a hot day.

At the end of the 3rd paragraph, you talk about the whole state being "shut down for construction" and seem to be trying to end with a dash. If you can't make a dash (I forget how on here), use 2 hyphens like --. *Wink*

"That's...not a number. He thought." That should all be 1 sentence and have a comma after "number." If he was actually speaking it, you would write, ""That's...not a number," he thought." Wait...I just realized, you might have actually meant that he stopped to think, not that he thought that the 0's weren't a number. If that's what you meant, it's correct. lol Perhaps say, "He thought for a half second before punching the red..." I really like the "Not today, ISIS." Hahaha!

"Poking a screen, no matter how earnestly endevoured, lacked heroics." Great sentence, but you misspelled "endeavored"...unless that's like a British spelling or something. *Bigsmile* Either way, great sentence and I like how he thinks about the youth being robbed of the satisfaction of hanging up on folks.

"Looking up to see if during the rejection of his call traffic had moved at all, he found, instead, a large white poster pressed against the inside of the back windshield of the car ahead of him." I'm pretty sure you need a comma after "see if" and "his call." Also, I believe you need a semi-colon after "moved at all" since "he found, instead..." is a complete sentence on its own.

Just being picky again, so change it or not, but "ANSWER THE PHONE, the poster said," should technically be "...the poster read" instead of "said." *Bigsmile* Most folks probably will never notice that, though. lol

"Cold sweat slathered around his chest and shoulders and pressed frigid needles into his scalp." You need a period after "scalp." I added it in that sentence I just copied. *Wink* Anyway, I like that you used "slathered." That's not something you see everywhere. Well done! I also like the "pressed frigid needles into his scalp." I wouldn't have thought of that and if I had, I would have said "pushed" or something else not as good. Nicely done! One thing I would say is that it sounds like the cold sweat is pressing the frigid needles into his scalp. Maybe try, "Cold sweat slathered around his chest and shoulders and frigid needles pressed into his scalp."

"Freaky coincidence. Poster's probably left over from a...a joke on someone." Did he actually say that out loud? I'd think he probably thought that instead, so use italics instead of quotation marks.

"Hands gripping the steering wheel as if wrestling a bull, his wide eyes dropped down to the cup holder, the number 00-0000 glowing so pretty against the spreading blue and orange graphics in the background." Nice description here.

"But now, a woman's head appeared next to the poster, black hair sticking to a sweaty face, mouth gaping as if screaming. Or crying." Description is really your strong point. Well done!

"Sweaty hands dropped his phone into his lap, thumb print smearing across the screen multiple times until it caught the green button and the call time counter started ticking up from zero." I appreciate how you didn't just say he nervously answered the phone. You rock at this Show Don't Tell stuff!

"...yanked a bag of her head..." OVER her head *Wink*

"...breath robbed by fear and confusion." Excellent!

"The car ahead of him - a red Mitsubishi with Utah plates - sped up and stopped with the traffic again." Those are hyphens. They should be dashes. Again a double hyphen like -- can be used if you can't figure out how to make a dash on here. I don't recall, myself. *Wink*

"He sped dialed his mom." I think that should be "speed dialed," personally.

"I'm glad you called. I was just about - " Again, use a dash instead of a hyphen.

"Mumbles in the background confirmed Ruby's denial to saying anything to Roscoe." I'd suggest "...refusal to say anything..." because if you deny something, you are generally saying something. You can refuse to say something, but you can't really deny to say something.

"Some Middle Eastern guy said, 'we have your mom.'" I'd capitalize the "we" because if he weren't quoting it, it would be capitalized. It's still after a "said" and a comma and at the beginning of a quote, so I'd capitalize it.

"He looked at the phone to make sure the call was still rolling. "Mom?"" Hahaha--Yep, when I don't get a response, I also check to make sure the call wasn't dropped. Well done!

"This isn't funny, mom." Pretty sure "mom" should be capitalized here.

""Stop it." Hot tears stung his eyes." That sounds like something I'd say. Unimpressive. lol You're much more creative than me/this. Find another way to describe his tears. I've seen this description too often before. I know you can do better. *Wink*

"32 years ago she fell in love with a soldier during her tour in Pakistan." You can't start a sentence with a number written like that. Either spell it out or reorder the words so the number isn't first. Annoying, I know. lol

"I did, but told me never to tell anyone you were from her." I'd suggest "I did. But SHE told me..."

You've used "ya" 2 or 3 times now. You mean "yeah." *Smile* But I do like how you have him answering more informally. That is how we speak, yet so often writers write "yes" when so few people actually say that. Good job.

"Ross, follow that car. I don't know why they have her, but they are luring you in, too." This is just me, but I'd think she'd want to protect him, not let him risk himself following the car. I get that in the end, that's what needs to happen. Maybe she's worried but he insists that the woman, whomever she is, obviously needs help? Or perhaps she tells him to follow the car, but not to get too close and not to go to a secluded area? Sure, she loves her sister, but she thought she was dead. She'd definitely worry for the safety of her son, IMO. Think about if you want to make an adjustment here and, if so, what you want to do.

"Before he had time to decide if any of this was real, traffic thinned and the red Mitsubishi sped away. He didn't believe any of it was real, but the only way to prove it to himself was to. Follow. The. Car." You just said he didn't have time to decide if it was real, followed by he didn't believe it was real. That doesn't really follow. And speaking of "following," I'd suggest follow "that" car instead of "the." But that's probably just a personal thing. *Smile*

""Mom, headed up the canyon" he texted." Do you ever address people in a text like he did here? I don't and was surprised to see it here, unless it's for a reason. Also, since he's following them, either he did this quickly at a light or stop sign or he did it while driving, so I'd expect it to be as brief as possible.

"The trees warned there would be no hope of anyone finding him." I love that the trees warned. That is excellent! Things like this are why you got 1st. *Wink*

"...managing to get an arm free and punched one of them in the groin." I like that! lol He's not a trained fighter and this is a desperate situation, so he does what he has to to get away. Great! I also like that he covers his head and runs for his car thinking they will shoot him at any second. So, perhaps having him heroically say he needs to follow the car because the woman needs help isn't right for him. I like how he's an honest character--not some super human, but a person who is terrified in a terrifying situation. That brings integrity to your piece, IMO. Nice!

"Police cars screamed into the tight enclosure, right behind Mother's silver Audi." He never called her "mother" so to me, this is weird. I'd recommend, "...right behind his mother's silver Audi."

"Mother complied. It looked like Mother had drawn the cops up here on a high sped chase." Now you are using "Mother" like a name. It seems weird to me as well. I'd go with "Roscoe's mother complied. It looked like his mom had drawn..." You also use "Mother" further down. I'd consider changing all these, but that's me.

"He squatted down, put his back to the tire, and sobbed into his knees, interspersed with manic laughing. To think he was bitching earlier about the heat." Again, I like how he's a real person here, not some macho guy. Good character choice! One thing, just being picky here, but I don't think we actually see him complaining about the heat anywhere, do we? We only see him complain about the construction.

"A team of FBI arrived with the setting sun. Roscoe watched with numb detachment..." Great way to describe the FBI's arrival! You are just so creative! *Heart* I also like how you talk about Roscoe's numb detachment. I think that's a very realistic thing, given his recent experiences and revelations. Good thinking for reality here.

""Hi, Roscoe," she said, nervous for an FBI agent who bum-rushed a rifle-wielding man without fear." What a great sentence here!

"He grumbled." Why does he grumble? He seems like a friendly, polite guy. To not respond seems less rude than grumbling, to me. Or maybe he just makes a sound of acknowledgement? Or perhaps the grumble needs more explanation.

"...though with plenty of space between them." Nice addition to the scene.

"...a 32 year long mission to root out American threats in Pakistan." Since if you were talking about an age, you'd say, "a 32-year-old mission," I'd consider hyphens in the "32-year-long mission." Not saying it's right, but consider it.

""What Heidi did not know," she said, sighing heavily, "was the micro chip..." I'm not loving the "sighing heavily" here. Not saying I could do better because I could NOT. However, I think you can. *Bigsmile* Also, I'd like an "about" in the next sentence, "was ABOUT the micro chip..." But that's me. lol Also, "microchip" is 1 word.

"Roscoe pressed his lips into a thin, angry line, expecting nothing less than "alien intervention" for her reason for the chip he swore he could feel as he stood there." I like the description of his lips. I love the "alien intervention" bit. It adds a touch of humor without throwing us off. And the part where he now swears he can feel the chip, TOTALLY realistic! lol I'd be the same way, I'm sure. Perfect!

""This micro-chip contained all the intel I had gathered..." Again, it's 1 word. Also, you made it 2 words at least 2 other times farther down, so check. *Smile* One issue I have here, and I don't know how to fix it, is that 31-year-old intel wouldn't be worth much. But I don't know what could be on there that's 32 years old that's still useful. Maybe just ignore that little plot hole. *Bigsmile*

"It was invasive and painless." "Invasive" doesn't really go with "painless." Did you mean "non-invasive"? But implanting something isn't exactly non-invasive. Consider, "It was painless and fairly non-invasive."

"...black curly hair swamping her face." "Swamping" is a great word choice! So creative! Again, things like this are part of why you won 1st. *Wink*

"...I collected all of them. Except for yours." She speaking, so you don't have to use full and complete sentences, but you can easily do so here. I'd suggest, "...I collected all of them -- except for yours."

"But Pakistan finally discovered my ruse and captured me, took the chips, and destroyed them, discovering where I'd hid the last chip." This sounds to me like destroying them helped them discover where the last one was hidden. But I'm not sure really how they'd find it, so it's probably best not to be too clear here, unless you have a genius idea. Or maybe she put in each one where the previous ones all were? But if one was found, that would be dangerous.

"Roscoe had to face his new life." This seems abrupt to me and perhaps a bit bigger than necessary. The only real change that I see is a new mother. Not saying that's not a huge deal, but this sentence sounds to me like he's about to go undercover or go on the run or something where EVERYTHING changes. He still has his same job and family (with an addition) and car, etc. Maybe he just has to face the new addition to his life?

"But he sure as hell wasn't going to answer anymore 00-0000 numbers, even if Jesus himself was in the back seat of the car ahead of him." Awesome!

"Now that he was older, finding out he'd been adopted fell far below the shock of what he owed in taxes every year. To hell who his mother was. Both of them could send him Christmas presents for all he cared. Maybe he could convince his real mom to buy him a new car. You know. To make up for being away his entire life." I'd say, "To hell WITH who his mother was." Also, not sure if "hell" should be capitalized here. But I thought this whole paragraph of his attitude was funny. I liked this. I'm not sure how realistic it is, but I like it. *Smile* I also like how you end with his joking about it. Cute.

Very well done! You definitely deserved first place! Congratulations! Keep it up!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
11
11
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Cute little quiz that I did terribly on. lol I wish it showed the answers in the end, but I think that has nothing to do with you. I think that's WdC. *Wink*

Two corrections, "...after she accidently bump into him..." Accidentally is spelled like that. *Wink* Try to remember it by thinking that you don't want to ACCIDENTALLY make the word too short. *Wink* Also, that should be "bumped," but I sure you knew that. *Bigsmile*

I hope other people have done better than I have! I'm going to nominate this for a Quill because I think it's a cute, fun activity for kids. *Smile* "2019 Nomination Form for Quill Awards
12
12
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Another great story with a fun twist at the end. I like it. It leaves me wondering if there really is a .50 cal under the hood. *Wink*

A couple of things...I'd recommend putting spaces between the paragraphs so it's easier to read. If looks like you might have copied this from a Word document. I know when I do that, all the spaces between paragraphs disappear.

"Once merged onto the freeway I stick to the middle lane..." I'm pretty sure there should be a comma after "freeway."

"...when it comes to mechanics from my dad but mostly I learned a lot about weaponry installation..." Pretty sure there should be a comma before and after "but mostly."

I'd also like to see you color this a bit more with some metaphors and description--really paint a picture. I've seen in your poetry that you are definitely capable of it. Things like describing the bus like a long orange cigar is good. I'd like to see more of that, but that's my opinion. I like showy things. *Smile*

Fun piece of writing--Thanks for sharing it! *Smile*


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
13
13
Review of Jarhead Joe  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Wow! Powerful and honest. You have such a way with words!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
14
14
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
I found your story on your newsfeed. Thanks for sharing!

"18 year old Kelly Thompson..." That should be "18-year-old." If you say, "18 years old," you don't need the hyphens. *Wink* You can remember this by removing the "year(s) old" part to see if it still makes sense. "18 Kelly Thompson" doesn't make sense, so the "year old" part is required. Since they can't be separated, you need hyphens. *Bigsmile* "Kelly Thompson is 18." Here you can take away the "years old," so since it's not required to be connected, you don't need hyphens. Maybe this will help you remember when to use hyphens with ages. *Smile*

"The young girl was 5'7,139 pounds,had blond curly hair,blue eyes covered by glasses,large breasts and a thin stomach covered by a white shirt with a black blazer jacket over the top of it, curvy hips and a bubble butt covered by a short black flowy skirt and had a fun and curious personality that sometimes landed her in trouble." This sentence is entirely too long. Try cutting it up some. Also, you need to add some spaces. Some of the words don't have a space after them, but it seems to be mostly when there is a comma. You wrote "5'7,139 pounds" and should have written "5'7, 139 pounds." You did that 4x in this paragraph. As for breaking up your long sentence, here an example of something you could try...

The young girl was 5'7, 139 pounds, and had blond curly hair. Her blue eyes were covered by (I'd add a descriptor here--black, wide, something to describe the glasses) glasses and her large breasts and thin stomach were covered by a white shirt with a black blazer jacket over top. Her curvy hips and bubble butt were covered (can you find another word here or reword the sentence? You've used covered now 3x) by a (I'd add "matching" or something to dress up the sentence a bit, but that's me) short, flowy skirt. She (also) had a fun and personality that sometimes landed her in trouble.

Try breaking the next sentence/paragraph into several sentences as well. Aside from being run-on sentences, they make me feel out of breath and I lose track of what's going on.

"...and after a struggle due to her breasts,her entire top half..." Don't forget the space after the comma here. Also, you have a line break, but not a space between this sentence and the next one. I'd recommend putting the following sentence on the same line as this one.

"Kelly then grabbed a blue rose,her favourite flower and tried to pull it out..." Again, there needs to be a space after the comma after "rose." Also, it seems weird to me that she's trying to pull the flower out. Out of the ground? She's trying to take the whole plant? I see you are not using American spelling for "favourite," so maybe this is a phrase used where you live. But it seems odd to me. I'd suggest, "and she tried picking it..." Also, this sentence is, again, way too long. Break it up some.

Yet another long sentence that needs to be broken up. Also, with "...began wiggling her rear end and said,"please let go of my skirt..." aside from needing a space after the comma after "said," you need to capitalize "Please." When a person start speaking, you pretty much always capitalize the first word.

"...with tiny ponies on them as the dog then ran off." Cute detail of the tiny ponies on her underwear. lol Also, I want to know why the dog ran away. Maybe something like, "...as the dog then ran off, having found a new chew toy" or "...having succeeded in its mission, the dog then ran off."

""That's annoying,I really liked this skirt", said the young girl as she placed the flower..." Again, a space before "I." Also, in American English, the comma ALWAYS goes inside the quotation marks. I know it's different with British English when using a period, but I think a comma is the same. I'm pretty sure that should be inside the quotation marks. Also, I don't understand what you mean by, "...she placed the flower..." Where did she place it?

""That's not good", said Kelly as she placed her hands against the hole and pushed and pushed with all her might but still the hole refused to let go of her." This seems to start a new paragraph because it's not connected to the sentence above, but there's no space between them. They should be 2 different paragraphs, so just add a space between the 2. *Smile* Also, the comma needs to go inside the quotation mark. And I love that you said, "...the hole refused to let go of her" instead of just saying she couldn't get free. Great choice here! *Heart*

""Oh, it's no use", said the embarrassed Kelly as she then tried to call her best friend Sandra for help but remembered that her pants were showing and felt too embarrassed and after no reply to her calls for help realised that she might be stuck there for a while." Again, the comma should go inside the quotation marks. Also, this needs to be broken up as it's just 1 giant sentence. Maybe consider, ""Oh, it's just no use," said the embarrassed Kelly. She then tried to call her best friend, Sandra, for help." (Notice, I included commas before and after Sandra. I remember to do that because you can take out her name and it still makes sense.) I wouldn't say "...but remembered that her pants were showing..." because that makes it sound like she changed her mind about calling Sandra when she didn't. Wait...When you said there was no reply to her calls for help, did you mean her phone calls or her yelling for help? Maybe say "cries for help" if you don't mean she used the phone. But why would she rather have a stranger find her than her best friend? Not sure that makes sense to me, which is why I thought she was calling her friend for help. Also, did you mean "panties"? Either is probably fine. "Remembering her pants were showing, she grew hot with embarrassment." (I added a little here to show her embarrassment instead of just telling it.) "After no replies to her calls to Sandra for help (or "...her cries for help"--depending on what you meant here), she realized she might be stuck there a while." This would be SO HUMILIATING! Poor Kelly! lol I can't even imagine how she feels right now.

"30 minutes later,Sandra,a thin brunette was walking..." Always spell out words at the beginning of a sentence. Don't forget to add spaces around your commas. I don't feel like it's necessary to describe Sandra as a thin brunette. The story is really about Kelly and we are all caught up in it, then you stop the action to describe Sandra. To me, it's not necessary.

"...her best friend's barely-covered backside..." Well done with the hyphen here. *Wink* Also, I like how you are staying away from getting too graphic or gross. Great job! You are really working to be tasteful with a sexy story.

'...and burst out laughing and said,"nice panties, do you want me to pull you out?"" There are too many "ands" here. But by what she says, we know who is talking so you don't really need to say that she said it. Start another paragraph (Sandra talking will be all that's in it) and say, "Nice panties. Do you want me to pull you out?" Also, notice I capitalized the N in "nice." I would have done that even if it did have something like "Sandra said, "Nice Panties."" The first letter is always capitalized when a person starts speaking. I also broke these two up into two sentences. I'm not 100% sure "nice panties" is a full sentence, but we often speak in partial sentences, so it's fine. You could also say, "Nice panties--Do you want me to pull you out?"

If Kelly didn't get a hold of Sandra on the phone, I feel like Sandra would have first asked what Kelly was doing there. Also, if she couldn't see her head (not sure how high the wall is), she probably would have first asked, "Kelly? Is that you?" But I totally agree that should would burst out laughing! I know I would have! Hahaha!!!

""Yes please", said the embarrassed young blonde..." Again, comma inside the quotation marks. Also, you previously described her as "blond." In the US, that's sometimes used to describe a guy's color while "blonde" is always a girl (and the more common use for girls), but I wasn't sure how it worked in your country. However, I'm sure you shouldn't be switching. Even if you can use "blond" for both guys and girls, pick a spelling. *Wink* I really like how you had previously written "... said the embarrassed Kelly...," but changed it up here, not using the same phrase again. Nicely done! Keep it fresh for your readers.

"...but still the wall just refused to release it's grip." That should be "its." "It's" is "It is." You can remember because the apostrophe replaces the letter "i" just like it replaces the letter "o" in "don't" or "hasn't." I, again, love how you give life to the wall. This is really one of my favorite bits about this story. Your speaking of the wall as if it has a will is terrific! *Heart*

""Wow, you've really wedged yourself in there tight", said Sandra as then called the two's other friend Emma,a curvy redhead and Steve,her boyfriend,who quickly arrived and burst out laughing at the sight of Kelly's behind sticking out." Don't forget to move the comma inside the quotation marks. There are also spaces that need to be added around the commas. On the good side, your use of commas is pretty darned good. I'm no comma queen, but I often have to add or take away commas in people's writing. I've made very few comma corrections when it comes to their usage.
You just have a bit of trouble with using them with quotation marks...and adding spaces, but I think you know you need the spaces after them. I think that's just typos. *Wink* Also, this is a long sentence that needs to be broken up. I'd try something like...

"Wow, you've really wedged yourself in there tight", said Sandra. She then called their ("two's" was awkward) other friend, (inserted comma here because if you remove her name, it still makes sense--good job knowing to add the comma afterwards *Wink* ) Emma, (added a space--also took out the description of Emma as this is Kelly's story and Emma is just a minor character) and Steve, (added space--I notice you didn't describe Steve Hahaha) her boyfriend.
Emma and Steve (or "they") quickly arrived, their car skidding to a stop, (I added this so no one thinks you are trying to verge on inappropriate things with children--the characters could be any age, but with Kelly's underwear, she sounds underaged, but you don't want to write stories about underaged kids in this sort of predicament on this site *Wink*) and burst out laughing at the sight of Kelly's behind sticking out." I don't blame them for laughing. I would have, too!

"...Sandra pulled her best friend's hips,Steve pulled his girlfriend's waist while Emma pulled Steve's t-shirt." First, you need a space after the comma. Second, I think you have folks confused. Emma and Steve are boyfriend and girlfriend. That means that Steve is pulling on Emma's waist and Emma is pulling on his shirt...so they are just pulling on each other. Hahaha Also, I wouldn't have her pulling on his shirt, but that's me. She can't help much that way. *Wink* Plus, she'll stretch it out. lol

""Heave", said Sandra as the tug of war with the wall began." Again, move that innocent comma inside the protection of the quotation marks. *Wink* All these times people are speaking should be separate paragraphs. They sort of seem to be, but you need to add a space between them. Again, GREAT job making the wall almost a character. In fact, you could sprinkle some descriptions of the wall to build it into more of a character. *Bigsmile* This story is really about Kelly and the wall.

""OW,that really hurts", said the young blonde..." Space between this line and the one above it, space after the 1st comma and move that 2nd comma inside the quotation marks.

""Heave", said Sandra as the three pulled and pulled even harder." Again, spaces between the lines and move the comma between "heave" and the quotation marks. In British English, periods can go inside or outside while in American English they can ONLY go inside quotation marks, but I'm like 99% sure the comma always goes inside, no matter whose English you are using. *Wink* I like how you have "...pulled and pulled even harder" instead of just using "pulled" once. Nice technique. *Wink*

""OW,I think I'm going to be pulled in two", said Kelly as still the wall didn't let go." Again, spaces above and below, space after the comma and move the comma inside the quotes. I really dig how you use this wall as a 5th character. I wouldn't have thought to do that. Lovely job!

""Come on everyone,put your backs into it,heave", said Sandra as the three pulled and pulled with all their strength as Kelly decided to try and push again until finally,a POP sound was heard as everyone was sent tumbling backwards into a heap on the ground as the young blonde finally came free." Again, spacing, comma, etc. Also, you have a run-on sentence here. I'd recommend, "Come on, everyone! (Notice the inserted comma) Put your backs into it! Heave," said Sandra as the three pulled and pulled with all their strength. Kelly decided to try and push again until finally, a pop sound was heard and everyone was sent tumbling backwards into a heap on the ground as Kelly finally came free." (You've described her as a blonde enough times. We know. It's more normal to use her name a lot than to describe her hair color so much.) I like how you use some sound effects. Nice touch. I put this sound effect in italics, but that's me. If you want to keep them as you had them, go ahead. But definitely do them the same way, whatever you choose. *Wink*

""Thank goodness for that", said Kelly as she hugged everyone and thanked them for pulling her out as everyone laughed at the ridiculousness of the situation as they decided to go get something to eat together with Kelly using her jacket to cover up the hole in her skirt." Again, move the comma and break up the sentence. Maybe try...

"Thank goodness for that," said Kelly as she hugged everyone and thanked them for pulling her out. Everyone laughed at the ridiculousness of the situation as they decided to go get something to eat together. Of course, Kelly used her jacket to cover the hole in her skirt.

Welcome to WdC! I'm glad to see you are writing! Keep it up! Don't get discouraged by the number of corrections I offered. Some are simply word choice and others I tried to help you remember how to not make the same mistake. I'm glad you shared your story. It's very creative! I never would have thought to write such a story. Nice imagination!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Old Oak Man  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (5.0)
WHOA! This poem is SO POWERFUL! I nominated it for a Quill award. *Smile* I especially how you reached outside of some normal vocabulary, but we still understand what you meant (ex. slaked). You also did very well with the metaphors without being cheesy. This is extremely well written! Thank you for sharing!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Spying on Secrets  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
I saw your newsfeed post and decided to give it a read/review. *Smile*

"Especially seeing as her own supervisor Alvis is Canaren..." I'm pretty sure you need a comma before and after "Alvis" because you can take out that name and the sentence essentially stays the same.

"She isn’t sure, Canarens aren’t really sharers." Since these 2 can be complete sentences, a comma isn't strong enough. Use a semi-colon here if you still want them connected. *Smile*

"...hissing when she kneels on a screw." There was hissing earlier on. Can you find another sound effect?

"Recky sucks in a breath, Anna closes her eyes." Again, these could be 2 sentences. If you want to keep them joined, try a semi-colon as a comma isn't strong enough for them.

"Recky is no longer grinning but when both Alvis and Devon leaves..." That should be "leave." Also, there might need to be a comma after "grinning," but I'm not sure.

"She opens her mouth the say something..." "...TO say something..."

I like that you have so many sound effects. I also like that you use a combination of normal and not normal names. It gives us an 'other world' sense without overwhelming us.

Just a suggestion--I put a link to the contest (and sometimes include the name typed out in case it becomes Invalid) along with the prompt and any special rules like a word count. I put it in light grey at the top. I've seen others put it in a dropnote. And some people put it at the bottom. I also go back and edit it if I won, including that info as well. *Smile* That's just something you might want to consider.

This is a really great story. I'm so glad you shared it on the newsfeed! I think it would be a great one to go back to and add more later. I want to know more about what's going on and what will happen. That's definitely a wonderful sign of a well-written story. So much mystery and I want answers! lol I like this story so much, I'm nominating it for a Quill. *Bigsmile* I really recommend you go back and at least correct the technical things to give yourself the best chance to win. GOOD LUCK!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of The Feather  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
This is a great story! Did it win? The only problem I saw with it is that I'm pretty sure being shocked causes your muscles to tense, thus he would not have opened his jaw. But I really liked the rest. Great work!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of An Embedded Poll?  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Another fun poll that may have warped results, especially those beyond the newsfeed responses. Who digs through your port if they don't love WdC? Well, maybe someone who hates it and is looking to trash you, I guess. Anyway, I'm glad the answers are so positive, but I'm not sure you were expecting anything different.

Was this poll actually helpful/insightful for you or just for fun? (No need to answer if you are too busy. *Wink*) It's sort of a rhetorical question. Then again, you created this in 2001, so back then there maybe have really been more question about whether or not WdC was any good. If only you had known what it would become! Of course, if you'd known the work involved in making it what it is, you probably would have quit it. *Rolling*
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In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: ASR | (4.5)
Fun poll, but as may have already been pointed out before, those most likely to find and do the poll are those most likely to love WdC. lol (At least now--though you probably had a more accurate cross section when it was first advertised on the newsfeed.) But then again, those who don't love WdC probably have severe issues that need to be addressed on multiple medical and mental health levels. *Laugh*
20
20
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (4.0)
You listed your Author's Note twice at the top. *Wink* Though the 2nd one has an additional sentence. But I like that you let us know that this is based on historical fact. Cool!

I like your title and it's nice that you give credit for it. *Smile*

You start with, "Welcome back Jon." There should be a comma after "back." You also write, "Special project? Wait a minute, where am I?" Pretty sure there should be a period after "Wait a minute." Or you can use a dash...at least, I would.

"“You may call me Ishmael.” As he said this, he fought hard to hide a smile. Moby Dick had always been a favorite book, he found he related well to that character." There should be either a semi-colon or a period after "book." Also, I'm a little confused about the "he." I assume Ishmael always found that Ishmael related to that character, but perhaps Ishmael found that Jon did. I especially thought this after the alien's name was also Ishmael...which made me wonder if the man doing the experiments was an alien. (Obviously, I'm going back and filling in some stuff here. lol)

"“Ishmael huh. Nice. But you didn’t answer my question Ishmael.”" There should be a comma after "question."

"You are not a guinea pig for us, this is entirely voluntary on your part." There should be a period instead of a comma.

“Yes Jon, of course.” There should be a comma after "yes."

"Remember Jon, you are not confined. You are free to leave at any time." I'm pretty sure the rule is that if you can take out the name and the sentence still makes sense, you set off the name, both front and back, with commas, thus you would need a comma after "remember."

The story starts off interesting and has my attention. Though just above Chapter One, you said, "...where he had been" twice in 3 sentences. Perhaps make the first one "...what he could remember about the moments just before he awoke in this room" or something like that.

Not sure if this is on purpose, but usually Manuel is spelled with an e, not an a. An a is how you spell the manual that you read. *Bigsmile*

"They needed every available acre for them to graze on, getting that junk cleared out had to be a priority." Those both seem like full sentences to me, so I'd suggest a semi-colon instead of a comma.

"It seemed the world was moving faster in 1947 than it had before." "...than it ever had before" seems more natural to me--but that's just me. *Wink*

"A light cloud of dust seemed to herald their approach, though that wasn’t the case at all. One couldn’t drive anywhere in Southeastern New Mexico without stirring up dust." Nice detail. I really like this.

"Mack spent a little bit of time locating Jose. It didn’t take too long, he found Jose easily..." To me, the first sentence seems to contradict the 2nd one. (Ignore the fact that I'm mixing first and 2nd...and any other boo-boos. lol) Anyway, the first sentence seems to me like it did take a bit of time, but then the next one makes it sound pretty quick. Perhaps add "only" like "Mack only spent a little bit of time locating Jose." But then the beginning of the of the next sentence isn't needed. You can follow it with "He found Jose easily..." YAY! I made the story shorter! *Laugh* Sorry. I hate reading long stuff, but for you and Quills, I will. *Bigsmile* Fyi, unless things go down hill, you'll be getting a nomination. I'm hooked. Now, if only it was in an audio version so I could just LISTEN to the rest of the story. lol

I'm impressed you are able to get the little accent over the word "cafe." Well done! *Bigsmile*

“I’m not sure what more I can say, but I will answer them as best I can Jean.” Pretty sure there should be a comma before "Jean."

"I’ve always told the truth when asked, it just seems to be the right thing to do." Again, because these both seem to be complete sentences to me, I think you should use a semi-colon instead of a comma.

I know the dialogue is made up, but I really want to know if there was a reporter who claimed to be working with them to protect the aliens! Was there???

"Oh c’mon!" Good job with this bit of dialogue. Too often we write properly, not as we speak, so the dialogue doesn't come across as naturally as it could.

"You are aboard what your friend Jean calls our main ship, our mothership." Pretty sure there should be a comma before and after Jean.

Why are they blue? If they were really blue, okay. But if you just made it up, I'd go with grey or something like that...or at least describe them as a pale blue. The images I see of them is generally a grey-ish color, so when you called them blue, I immediately thought, "Oh. Okay. This part is made up." Maybe not, but the blue made it seem fake. Plus, the dialogue here seems sort of hokey. I can't really explain it, but he's not freaked out. They're speaking matter-of-factly, though maybe that's okay. I'm not sure, but it just seems out of place compared to the rest of the story.

"The truth’s been told already, how can I backtrack?" At least a semi-colon, but I'd recommend a period to break these two up.

"It’s getting late, I should head back to the ranch." Again a semi-colon or period. Or you might be able to use a dash here, but I'm a dashing kind of girl. lol

"...he’s Colonel Blanchard’s superior, and over in Fort Worth by the way..." There should be a comma after "Worth." Also, the parentheses make it seem like this statement is for the reader, not something the announcer actually said. Again, I'd go with dashes to separate this. *Bigsmile*

"I helped the Army recover that stuff, it was balloon debris. It’s happened on the ranch before, will probably happen again." Both these need at least a semi-colon. Though I'd probably use 1 semi-colon and one period (or dash heeheehee) so as to not look weird by using a bunch of semi-colons so close since they aren't the most common piece of punctuation. *Wink*

This part is after the dashes across the page, when Jon is back in the present. He asks how long he was gone and is told that it was about 45 seconds, perhaps less. I feel like if they are doing experiments and research, as it seems to me they are, they'd be timing it exactly, especially if it's that short a time.

"I know, time isn’t the same when you’re out, is it?" Either 2 sentences or a dash after "know."

"He placed in military custody for a week, and never mentioned what happened while he was there." That should be "He WAS placed in military custody..." *Wink*

Also, there was an extra space between the end of the Prologue and the beginning of Chapter One. I think there should be an additional space between the end of Chapter One and the beginning of Chapter Two. Otherwise, they look like the title, "Chapter Two" belongs to Chapter One. lol Also, maybe put in even one more space between the end of the chapters and the next chapter title since you have 2 spaces between the chapter title and the beginning of the chapter. And I'd recommend putting the chapter titles in bold.

I see you just copied and pasted from the Prologue. First, be sure to correct all your mistakes. *Wink* Second, I'd think the words would be a little different, even if the basic interaction was the same. Third, it doesn't make sense that Ishmael again is thinking almost smiling because of Moby Dick, but I assume that's just because of the copy/paste thing and you forgot it was in there.

Side note--My cousin was named Michelle because of that Beatles song. *Bigsmile*

"I think we’re fine Michelle, at least I am. I’m not so sure about Jon here." I'm pretty sure there should be a comma before "fine."

Also, is the yellow supposed to stand out this much? I'm assuming she's Jean. Maybe tone it down if this isn't supposed to be so obvious--unless I'm wrong. Then I guess it's kind of fun/funny to make the reader think they already know something they don't. lol

At the end of Chapter 2, I could be wrong, but I think there should be a comma after "unemotional" in "His voice was low, unemotional as he related his recent adventure." To me, it's not a necessary word, but clarifies the intent of the "low" voice, so it should have a comma after it. Maybe get Winnie (I forget her username) to help with the comma stuff. *Wink*

Why is the first time he wakes in the Prologue, but then Chapter 2 is his waking? Why not just start his waking with Chapter 1, then the alien ship crash is Chapter 2, waking is odd chapters, story is even chapters... Just my opinion. The Prologue now doesn't seem like a prologue as much as it just seems like the 1st chapter.

You have a LOT of space between the end of Chapter 2 and the words announcing Chapter 3. Honestly, I prefer it. Nice separation and it helps me find the chapter more easily. But whatever you choose, do it the same way throughout. *Wink*

In the first paragraph of Chapter 3, you talk about him choosing this cafe (with the accent over the word--still impressed lol) because he found it on a trip to Dallas. So? Who cares? What makes this cafe so special? Maybe mention that it makes coffee a boldly roasted like his college girlfriend did or the flaky, buttery cressants (can't figure out how to spell those crescent-shaped rolls lol) are unlike anything he's ever had. Tell us why he likes this cafe. Also, I like that he's into cafes, no matter where he goes. It lets us know that some part of Jon is still there. Nice touch. *Smile* Though I'd add something about him wanting to go to a cafe or missing the coffee from his favorite cafe or something at some point when he's actually being Jon.

"Good morning sir! What can I get for you today?" Comma after "morning." (I'm getting tired and recently took a break so I'm cutting out some complete sentences. It's a review, so I can be as lazy and incorrect as I want. *Laugh*)

"Jerry is a good man, he has connections." Again, semi-colon or 2 sentences...or maybe a dash. *Bigsmile*

"I don’t have time for idle chit-chat, I want to be on the knoll when the President’s motorcade drives by." Same as above. Yes, I'm that lazy. *Laugh*

"Try to get some good shots, the looks on people’s faces will be priceless." Same as above.

"Arthur felt a little rebuffed her lack of response to his small romantic repartee.." First, I think it should be "Arthur felt a little rebuffed BY her lack of response..." Second, well, as you can see, you have 2 periods there. *Wink*

"When he looked up again, Marta had disappeared among the small crowd gathering to see the presidential motorcade pass-by." I think that should be '...pass by," but I could be wrong.

"Afterwards he relaxed a few minutes, enjoying the late morning." I'm pretty sure there should be a comma after "afterwards."

Funny story--The fireworks comment is about where I was able to figure out this was Kennedy. I mean, I knew it was, but somehow had his story mixed up with Archduke Franz Ferdinand (who caused the beginning of WW I with his assassination). The confusion came from my memory of some of the killers waiting for their opportunity at a cafe. Somehow I was thinking it was Kennedy who they had to try 3x before they succeeded. *FacePalm* Kennedy-Franz Ferdinand-whomever. Can you tell I'm a huge history buff? *Headbang* *Laugh*

"Arthur tried not to show his shock and surprise, and did his best to see what was happening on the TV, but there was no live coverage of the motorcade, just a news report." Uh, isn't shock and surprise a normal and appropriate reaction? Wouldn't he WANT to show those? Also, why would he even have them? Didn't he know it was going to happen? I'm a bit confused here.

"After a few moments he sat down at his table, as did most everyone else." I think there should be a comma after "moments." But also, a few moments isn't very long. Usually people hang around the TV much longer than that when something like that has happened, unless times have changed or people were turning away because of the weeping newsman. Maybe at least put that he sat down, but others lingered longer? Just my opinion

"He never saw the rifle, it was still hidden." You know, semi-colon/period/dash choice.

"I had no idea it was late, then the janitor ran out to see what was going on and came back blabbering about a shooting going on." Same as above after "late," but also, I think you might want to say, "I had no idea it was SO late." Otherwise, it sounds a bit odd to me.

"About that time the television screen went blank momentarily, then an obviously upset announcer came on the air." I'm pretty sure there should be a comma after "time." I feel like after "momentarily" you need a semi-colon.

"Wasn’t today a sort of holiday due to Kennedy’s Motorcade?" Motorcade shouldn't be capitalized.

"And I don’t know why the janitor was there, I was very surprised to see him." Semi-colon/period/whatever that isn't a comma. *Wink*

"Keep to the plan, we’ll talk later." Same as above.

"Arthur slowly found his way back to his hotel, and sat in his room." No comma needed after "hotel."

"Lee Harvey Oswald, an employee at the Texas Book Repository has been arrested in connection with the assassination of President Kennedy this afternoon." There should be a comma after "repository."

"So your film’s gone…." You seem to have a set of ellipses and a period. You don't need the period. (First time I've told you THAT. *Rolling*

Marta’, we need to…” He never finished his statement as Marta interrupted him. What's the apostrophe after "Marta" for? As far as I can tell, you don't need it. Also, if you say, "He never finished..." that seems more like a long time passed while he was making a statement, at least in my opinion. I think, "He DIDN'T finish his statement BEFORE Marta interrupted him" sounds better. Again, just my opinion.

"I know, I know. But what was I supposed to do? They took my camera too Arthur." I would suggest ellipses (or a period) after the first "I know" and I'm pretty sure you need a comma between "too" and Arthur."

"What. Were you seen with Oswald?" I'd recommend a dash between "what" and "were" to show more immediacy, but you at least need a question mark, IMO.

"We need to change our plans, now!" Again, I'd have a dash instead of a comma to show more immediacy.

"There was to be no one upstairs with him, I gave everyone the day off to see the president!" Again, semi-colon or period or something that isn't a comma.

I'm a bit confused. Why do they think they are being framed for killing the president when they WERE going to kill the president? I don't get it. Why not just let them do it? It would save the trouble of framing them and then the evidence would be more realistic...you know, if you arrange things like pictures and eye witnesses and such to prove they did it.

"This janitor was no janitor at all, he was there watching Lee, and us, all along." A period is probably best here. While a semi-colon will work, it occurred to me that you might just have a crap ton of semi-colons by the time I'm done and I wouldn't recommend that since they aren't a common piece of punctuation. People usually just use periods. lol

"Well, you know I have to leave, I am expected in the homeland tomorrow." Same as above.

"You better disappear too." Pretty sure there should be a comma after "disappear."

"I will see you when I can Marta. Take care of yourself, travel safe." Comma before "Marta" and maybe a dash or ellipses between "yourself" and "travel."

Just a couple of thoughts here as he's kidnapped or whatever. First, he holds his breath, but then finally has to breathe. Granted, I've never had chloroform or whatever used on me (thankfully), but many things like that have very strong fumes and they go up your nose, whether you are breathing or not. Maybe at least have him feeling them burn (don't know if they do, FYI) as they go up his nose while he's holding his breath. Also, he's flailing wildly in the chair, but he's secured so he can't really move (since his head can't move, I assume the rest can't, either). Maybe having him ATTEMPT to flail wildly, but can't?

"Well, hello there sleepy head." Not 100% sure, but I'd put a comma after "there" because "sleepy head" is being used like a name. Nice touch, BTW. *Wink* I already like the bad guy. Not that I think he's a good guy, but that I think he's an interesting bad guy.

"Look Mr., Dowling, your gunman is dead." Was that comma after "Mr." a mistake? If it was meant to mean a pause, I'd use ellipses, but you only need 3. I'm pretty sure you never use them with a period.

"He was glad at least one of them was free, maybe there was some hope yet." Comma that should probably be a period thing again.

"We will find her, rest assured we will find her." There should be another comma after "assured."

Did I mention I hate reviewing? It's a good thing I like you, Elle, the Quills, and most of all, your story! It is a really neat idea and I'm interested to see where it goes. *Smile* Otherwise, you'd be killing me here. Instead, I'm just wounded, but not mortally. *Rolling* #ReviewingSucks *Laugh*

"That is not the correct answer Arthur!" Comma before "Arthur."

"We know your team killed the president, ballistics prove it." Probably a dash, but definitely not a comma. Ellipses would work if you wanted a pause there.

"Your ballistics my ass." Comma before "my."

"We’ve been set up, Oswald told me he never got a shot off." Turn that comma into a period. Interesting that he's confessing to trying to kill the president and no one seems to care about that. lol

"You really shouldn’t lie to me Arthur, this will only get worse with more lies." Comma before "Arthur" and period in place of that comma.

Just my opinion, but if the body odor is so bad it makes him retch, he'd probably smell it from a good distance, not just when the guy gets up close. I realize the mouth odor was probably part of the problem, but just my opinion. Maybe he smells it from a distance and it's gross, but the only thing he can really identify in the room since he can't see anything or hear anything except the voices? Just a thought.

"He knew he would talk, and soon at that." I think there should be a comma after "soon," but I could be wrong.

The last sentence just before Chapter 4 says, "For me, it was a few days, yet here it was only a few seconds." Was he really gone a few days? I thought all that happened in 1 day--cafe, hotel, kidnapping... No? I don't feel like going back to verify, but maybe you should. lol

Also, I'd recommend more space between the end of Chapter 3 and the beginning of 4, but definitely decide on a spacing plan and stick with it. *Wink*

"Rhonda, help me Rhonda." Comma after "me."

"Go share your findings, see what Brian has learned, we’ll be fine here." That's 3 sentences.

"You’re sure you are okay with all this? It’s a lot you know." Comma before "you know."

"I will be fine, Jon will be fine, now get going!" I think that should be 3 sentences. Also, I wouldn't end with an exclamation point as it seems like she's yelling rather than just speaking loudly/firmly.

"Jon glanced at her, and couldn’t help wondering where she came from." Personally, I don't think you need that comma, but maybe check with someone else.

"This field is new, just starting to explode into the forefront of science." I like how this sounds so natural with the way you've done the dialogue. Great job.

"Ish came up with this project, and I was lucky enough to join him." Again, not sure you need this comma, but maybe check with someone else.

"But he’s a huge fan of Moby Dick, his father read it to him as a youngster, and he’s read it many times himself." Again, this should be at least 2 sentences, if not 3. No commas.

"Really, why. How early?" That should be a question mark, not a period, but you probably know that. *Wink*

"He started to get up, and as he did he simply fell over, and never moved." I think there should be a comma after "did" and I'm not sure about the one after "over."

"She blamed no one and nothing." I'm not sure why this is in here. I didn't think she was blaming anyone. Maybe connect it to the next sentence better by using "...no one and nothing, but I know she had a broken heart..." Yes, I'm telling you to make 2 sentences into 1. *Rolling*

"I’m sorry to hear about your mother Michelle." Comma after "mother."

"Your aunt must have been a special lady to keep your mother’s wishes in mind, and help you get started." No comma.

"I met Ishmael at a conference, and we hit it off quickly." I don't think you need that comma, personally.

"He asked for my resume; I guess you could say the rest is history." Good semi-colon use. *Bigsmile*

"How long have you been standing there Jeffrey?" Comma after "there."

"Oh don’t be preposterous Jeffrey!" Comma after "oh" and after "preposterous."

"I know Michelle, but you two do get along well." comma after "know."

"Abruptly Jeffrey changed the subject." Comma after "abruptly."

"Yep, set exactly as we calculated in the lab, all we can do now, is wait of course." Period after "lab." Don't think there should be one after "now." Comma after "wait."

Don't forget to work out the spacing plan for the chapters. We are now on Chapter 5. *Smile*

"Welcome back Jon." Comma before "Jon."

"Ishmael huh. Nice. But you didn’t answer my question Ishmael." Comma after the first "Ishmael" and after "question."

Don't forget to take out the bit about him trying to hid his smile when he says "Ishmael," or at least take out the rest. And if you plan to keep the same information about how things happen and such, switch it up some. Things like him seeing himself in the mirror or noticing the machines beeping can be said differently each time so it's not like you just copied and pasted it. *Wink* Also, don't forget to fix the errors I mentioned previously. I won't go over them again to save time. *Smile*

Chapter 6--Again, I like the extra spaces after the last chapter, before the next title, but that's me. *Wink*

"Where are you Fred?" Comma before "Fred."

"Her voice fell quietly on the soft wind blowing across the sand." Very nice! You should include more things like this!

"She looked around the moonlit beach, then out at the waves crashing on the shore." I like the last sentences better, but still, more of things like this would be good. *Smile*

Amy was never one to admit defeat, and refused to do so now. She sat back down to try and relax, but bolted upright when she saw something move in the cockpit." I'm confused. She refuses to accept defeat, but doesn't keep calling or looking for Fred?

"But the brief, weak movement, had stopped." No comma after "movement."

"It wasn’t a long swim, but it took more of her remaining strength than she thought it would." Nice, realistic detail. *Smile*

"Despite his body being soaked with seawater, she could see that his breathing was irregular, his skin pale and flushed." I'm not sure why being soaked would make it hard to see these things as it suggested with "Despite his body being soaked with seawater..." Was it mostly covered in seawater? That would make it harder to see. Not to mention, it was night, so that would definitely make it harder to see. But his body being soaked (but not covered) would actually make it easier to see his irregular breathing, IMO, because his clothes would be sticking to him...just my opinion. Yes, I'm being difficult. *Bigsmile*

"All that can wait Fred, we have to get you out of here!" Comma before "Fred," but not after. Make it 2 sentences...or maybe consider a dash. I think dashes are just so handy. *Bigsmile*

"No Amy! I know I’m done, whether you free me or not. Now get to the beach before the tide comes in." Comma after "no" and probably after "now" as well.

"She looked around the tiny cabin, and gathered what supplies she could." I don't think you need that comma.

"She looked back at Fred one more time, and saw no sign of him breathing, his head loosely rolling from side to side as the plane was rocked by waves." I don't think you need the comma after "time." This is a GREAT sentence. I'd love to see more descriptions like this!

"She had never been one to cry much, but found tears rolling down her cheeks as she climbed from the shattered cockpit." Didn't you just say she'd never been one to give up? Maybe word that differently.

"Grabbing a life preserver, she lay across it and paddled towards the beach, the waves seemingly stronger with each crest." I like this description as well. *Smile*

"‘At least I don’t have to worry about freezing here on this island.’ Amy thought to herself." I don't understand. Why not? I don't remember any mention of the temperature. Or did she rescue some matches? If so, they should be mentioned sooner or this should be thought later.

"Amy stared at her plane as long as she could, as if she was trying to will it to float to the beach." Another great sentence. It's sort of like you wrote differently or grew as a writer between what was written earlier and this part. Well done. *Heart*

"As the plane became submerged, she saw it roll a little in the waves, its wings now broken from the fuselage. The waves inexorably pulled it towards the open ocean, as if trying to hide its wreckage from any searchers. Finally it disappeared, leaving Amy alone on the beach." While this is a great bit, it doesn't match the tide coming in. If the tide was coming in, it would be bringing the plane in, not pulling it out to sea. Yeah, I know, details, details. *Bigsmile*

"She was pretty sure that the island was uninhabited, and as she took stock of her situation, she realized her true plight." She just took stock in the paragraph before. Maybe use another word.

"They had not carried much food with them, the space had been very limited and the extra weight would have consumed more fuel." Make it into 2 sentences instead of using a comma.

"She regained her strength faster than she would have thought, but her mind couldn’t focus on the task at hand." I'd say, "At first she regained her strength..." because at first she had a few food supplies. Otherwise, it sounds like she's totally on the upswing, but in reality, it's just a temporary upswing. Also, I'd say "...the taskS at hand" because there were many tasks she needed to do. I assume you meant the one she was currently focusing on, whatever it was, but it sounds like there was only 1 thing to do.

"She finally managed to start a small campfire, but struggled to keep it going." Nice detail.

The few provisions she had grabbed from the plane didn’t last too long, she was now living off the meager fruits and vegetables near her beach shelter, and the few fish or crabs she managed to trap. Make it 2 sentences--breaking at "long." I don't think you need the comma after "shelter."

"...she would have seen the wreckage of a tramp steamer sitting high and dry on the rocks, its back broken in two places." Super description, especially that last part! *Heart* *Heart* *Heart* Though it makes it sound like that might be important later, but I'm thinking probably not. Anyway, I love the description!

You mention in the last paragraph of this part, just before the tildes making a page break,
that she's probably suffering from shock. Admittedly, it was like over 10 yrs ago, but I got EMT certified and am pretty sure shock happens at first, not a few days later. By now, I'd expect her to be out of her shock.

"It was late June, but Amy felt sweat forming in her armpits quickly." Is Papua New Guinea in the Southern hemisphere? If so, maybe mention that since I'm thinking, "Well, it's late June. Of course she's going to be sweating." Most readers are probably from the US and Canada. *Wink*

"She wasn’t surprised, they were at Lae Airfield, Papua New Guinea." Make this 2 sentences.

"The next leg of their flight would be over nothing but ocean; she wanted to be sure the craft was in tip top shape." Good placement of a semi-colon. *Wink*

"Amy! Amy, whatcha doin?" Again, good dialogue, but personally, I'd put an apostrophe after the N in "doin.'"

"As they walked, they softly discussed the coming flight." The next sentence has an exclamation point, so they aren't really discussing softly. See below. *Wink*

"Amy, you should be resting! You’re not completely recovered from your spell of Dysentery." Also, dysentery doesn't need to be capitalized. We don't capitalize colon cancer or strep throat. Plus, I googled just to be sure. *Laugh*

I must admit, I don't know what historical event this is referencing, but I'm intrigued. *Bigsmile*

"Instruments be damned, I bet you could have gotten us here, and onward without them." I'd put a dash between "damned" and "I." Fyi, in case you don't know, a dash is longer than a hyphen. If you don't know how to make a dash, just put 2 hyphens together like this --. Just one is wrong. I'd hate for you to put in a bunch of hyphens after I told you to put in dashes. *Rolling*

"Once again she smiled at him with her impish smile. Fred could only wonder what she was thinking of, or planning." First, while I'm sure this isn't the first time he's seen that impish smile, it's the first time we have. I'd suggest something like, "Once again she smiled at him. He never got used to that impish smile" or something like that. Also, why is Fred wondering what she's thinking of or planning? Shouldn't she be thinking about and planning the next leg of the flight? I haven't seen anything to suggest otherwise. I haven't noticed any flirtation between them or her love for playing practical jokes or something. I'd leave that out, myself.

"Well, you’re the pilot, I’m just the navigator. We’ve discussed this before. It’s a team effort, we’re a team here." This should be 5 sentences, not 3. Though you could put a dash after "effort," if you wanted. I wouldn't after "pilot." I think 2 sentences is just better here.

"One thing that will not happen again, is that crazy business with the radio." I don't think you need a comma here.

"Amy’s look of anger was not lost on Fred; he knew they couldn’t experience that problem again." Here you are saying he knows what she's talking about, but in the next sentence (below) he seems to be verifying what she's talking about. I realize it's probably just to tell us, but maybe have him make a comment about the failure or think something in his head about it to tell us what she's talking about.

"You mean the radio failure? We have to make sure the Itasca knows what frequency we’ll use, and we need to know theirs of course." I'm not sure you need the comma after "use," but maybe. I think you probably need one after "theirs."

"I’m sure that’s been taken care of, I’ve been exchanging cablegrams with them about that problem since the Darwin flight." This should be 2 sentences.

"This is an adventure as you know." Comma after "adventure."

"And I always say, ‘Adventure is worthwhile in itself’." I think you live in the US. If so, the period ALWAYS goes inside the quotation marks, even ones like these. Same for commas. In England, it varies with periods and I'm not sure about commas. In both, question marks and exclamation points vary, depending on usage.

"Once we have this adventure completed, maybe we’ll have others together…." No period needed after ellipses.

"He relished the long walk, it gave him the chance to think about this trip, their flights, and what was going to happen once they arrived in Oakland." You can use a semi-colon, period, or dash after "walk," but don't use a comma. *Wink*

"That was fine with him, he was not a man who yearned for the spotlight." Again, no comma--pick something else.

"At times he wondered what it would be like to have the spotlight on him." You just said he didn't yearn for it. I realize yearning and wondering are different, but to clarify, maybe say, "Of course, at time he wondered what it would be like..."

"He had a past though, and knew things might get ugly if the press looked into his history enough." Oooo...Intrigue! I love it! *Bigsmile*

Fyi, I'm at over 32k characters. I bet this is your longest review EVER. *Bigsmile* So help me, if it says it can't post the review because it's too long, SOMEONE WILL DIE!!! Probably me, just a heads up. *Laugh*

"Amy had not successfully used the Radio Direction Finder (RDF)." It's not really clear what that does.

"It was understandable in many ways, the Bendix system was difficult to grasp, and in testing it the day before, Amy had not been able to find the sharp minimum which would indicate the direction of the RDF beacon." I'd put a dash or period after "ways."

"Despite these thoughts troubling his mind, Fred finally found peace, and sleep deeply." That should probably be "slept deeply." Also, I don't think you need a comma there, but I could be wrong.

"Fred rotated the directional antenna to gain a null, but was unable to obtain a suitable one." Later we get an idea of why it's important, but maybe a clue as to what it is would be nice, too. Just a thought... *Smile*

"Fred, with no null, we won’t know their position, we can’t get to them!" Period after "position."

"Itasca, we must be near you, how do you read? Over." Period after "you."

"KHAQQ calling Itasca, we must be on you, but cannot see you…. gas is running low…" Two more periods that need to be erased after the ellipses.

"We are running North and South." You need a line space after this sentence. The next one starts immediately on the next line, without a normal space.

"With gas running low and unable to communicate with the Itasca, she set their course due south as she’d just reported." I'd make some mention of them trying to raise the Itasca for a bit. Otherwise, it sounds like poor planning where she barely had enough fuel...unless that's the historical reality.

"Right, I’ll do my best Fred." Comma before "Fred."

"Amy knew the engines were close to running on fumes, and throttled back until they were almost idling." I don't think you need that comma, but might be wrong.

"Slowly the plane lost altitude as it approached the island." Comma after "slowly."

"Suddenly a downdraft caught the small craft and quickly pressed it down. Amy jerked the column up, but it was not enough. The planes wheels hit the water, the plane slamming to a stop." Exciting!

"The two of them were thrown about, screams and grunts from each as Electra was wrenched violently by the waves." Perhaps a personal choice, but shouldn't it be "the Electra" since it was never previously used as the plane's name, but as it's model?

Dang it! I just realized I saw an apostrophe you needed in the word "plane's" somewhere when you wrote "planes," but I can't remember where. Oh well. No doubt, while I like to think I've improved things, there are probably still lots of errors. *Wink*

"She wasn’t too worried, the Itasca had heard them, that much was obvious." Period after "worried."

"She did not realize that she had missed a plane flying over as she slept." But you said the plane was flying high, right? It didn't seem like a search and rescue plane would be flying that high. If she's exhausted or a heavy sleeper, she could still sleep through it if it was fairly low.

"It was during one of those moments of searching that caused her to fall." I'm being picky here, but technically the moment wasn't what caused her to fall, as the construction of this sentence suggests. It was the searching. Perhaps something like "It was during one of those moments of searching that she fell."

"She fell clumsily, her head banging hard against a thick branch. Blackness engulfed her as she passed out." Dang! Poor girl can't catch a break!

Note that you have different amount of spacing around the tildes before and after this section. Probably pick a spacing and check all the tilde line spacings. *Bigsmile*

"You are far more than a mere guinea pig, I hope you know that." Period or dash or something instead of a comma.

"Well, I don’t know that, but thank you. I hope that one day I will regain my complete memory, and can know who I really am." Not sure you need the comma after "memory," but maybe.

"I do too Jon." Comma before "Jon."

"All in due time Jon." Comma before "Jon."

"As they spoke, a young woman entered the room wearing a pale yellow slacks and a white shirt. Her shoes complimented her slacks, being an off yellow type of sneaker that Jon hadn’t seen before." She's probably wearing pale yellow scrub bottoms since she's a nurse. *Wink* Also, I just realized, we didn't see yellow this time, did we? Not that I remember.

“Why thank you Jon, I am doing well, I can see you are too!” Comma before "Jon" and probably after "are." This should also be 3 sentences, not 1.

"“Michelle.” This time, Ishmael spoke." I like that you changed up how you said this. Nice touch.

"During his most recent adventure, Jon was Amelia Earhart! We’ve always wondered if one of our subjects would only be someone in their gender, now we have an answer." I thought it could be her, but didn't know enough about the situation. I didn't know she had someone else with her. I didn't know she went by Amy. I didn't know she was trying to land on a ship at one point. Very interesting...though I assume a lot of this is made up since we don't really know what happened to her, right? lol It reminds me of the movie...dang it. I can't recall the name. But basically, it's a true story about a couple that gets left during a scuba trip and their ordeal. They die in the end. I realized that since they died, we have no idea what really happened and basically, everything after the boat leaving them was 100% made up. lol

"Yes my dear, I will, I promise." Comma after "yes" and probably a period after "will."

"She found working with him far more satisfying that she had thought possible." Should be "...THAN she had thought possible."

Don't forget to check spacing for each chapter. We are now staring Chapter 7. *Bigsmile* I'm getting closer! Thankfully--since I've been at this for HOURS. Did I mention I hate reviewing? Nothing personal at all. It is a good story that I will nominate. Oh crap! I forgot I was supposed to nominate this! I think I was just going to be so happy to be done that I was going to forget to nominate it. *Laugh* That would have SUCKED! lol Let me do it now... GOOD LUCK! *Shamrock* What's the word count on this again? I'm nominating it for Best Novella. If that's wrong, just let them know. Novellas are 20k-60k for Quill purposes. Also, don't forget to make it public by January or whenever they start reading the longer ones. *Wink* And you'd better make a bunch of corrections after all the work I did to suggest them!!! Actually, the only reason for the 4 stars is the corrections. Otherwise, I'd have scored it 4.5. But I'd need more of those awesome descriptions you teased me with from time to time before I gave it 5. *Wink*

Okay, at the beginning of Chapter 7, don't forget to make all those corrections I've previously suggested and I'd make the whole scene similar, but not exact. He can ask the same or almost same questions, but the answers shouldn't necessarily be word for word and the descriptions definitely shouldn't be.

"This was my last excursion, after I tell you where and who I was, I’m done." Period after "excursion."

"Are you sure Jon?" Comma after "sure."

"Well, tell me about this latest excursion, and I will fill you in on everything we’ve been doing." No need for a comma in the middle.

"Good, I have to return to this last excursion though!" Uh, but didn't he say he was done?

"Jon lightly rubbed the ‘token’ in his right hand as he said this." What token?

Chapter 8--Of course, watch spacing. *Wink*

"He detested large crowds of people, and could never get used to the throngs of people that seemed to be everywhere he went." I don't think you need that comma.

"Being from the Bay Area of San Francisco, he was used to crowds, but here in the New York City Metro area, it was a little different. The rush of people here was unlike the Bay Area. There was a difference in the people that he couldn’t put his finger on." Interesting description. Good job.

"Now he was wishing he’d taken a taxi since his feet were feeling like lead." Umm...but just 2 paragraphs up he was hurrying. Did more time pass than I realize? That seemed like the present, not before the subway.

"But his destination was close, and he trudged on." Not sure you need that comma.

"After all, the millennium had passed a scant eighteen months ago, and cellular phones were all the rage, he knew they really needed to dive into that business." Not sure you need the comma after "ago," but maybe. I'd end the sentence with "rage."

"“Alan, we really need to meet more often, how else can we brainstorm?” Nick shook Alan’s hand also, hugging him just as his brother had." There should be a period after "often" and maybe one after "him," but I'm not 100% sure.

"Well guys, I can’t always just up and run here y’know. But things are advancing quickly in our world, who knows how we’ll meet in future years?" Comma after "here" and period after "world."

"So true Al, so true...She was highly recommended, and lives out in your neck of the woods!" Comma before "Al." Those ellipses show I left out stuff. They aren't yours. I'm getting lazier and am combining stuff. lol It's 11:30 pm and I'd rather be in bed, but am REALLY trying to finish this before bed. We'll see how that works out... Anyway, I'm not sure you need the comma after "recommended" and I wouldn't use the exclamation point. Instead, show the excitement with some action.

"As they were talking about projects each of them were involved in, a young woman who looked to be in her late twenties approached the table. Comma after "woman" and after "twenties."

"Rick, you’ve told us this is your favorite place to kick back, relax and eat, what do you recommend?" Period after "eat."

"Rick looked at the three of them without looking at the menu and said, “We have to start with the Brasato e Peperoni Secchi, maybe see if we can get a large Insalata Caprino e Pera, and one of us just has to have the Spigola al Forno.”" Period after "Secchi." Should that be capitalized in Italian? I don't know and don't care to look it up. Sorry for the slack reviewing. Bad Jody!

"What did you just say? I understand one of them is a salad, but c’mon man! Speak English!” Al exclaimed." I'm not sure if he's irritated or teasing his friend. Make that a bit more clear.

"But I dined here so many times in the past that I’ve almost memorized the menu. Much like Rick here it seems." The 1st sentence is fine. I'm just including it so you can find the 2nd one more easily. *Wink* Comma between "here" and "it."

"Well we’ve hired you on with this project, and while I know a little about you, tell us in your own words about yourself." "...in your own words?" Whose words would she use? lol I'd leave that part out. *Wink*

"He wasn’t killed in combat, he just had a massive heart attack, and died almost instantly. I’ve raised our daughter Shelley ever since." I'd use a period or dash, maybe a semi-colon after "combat." And I don't think you need a comma after "attack." I like that you have him dying of something else over there. Nice touch. There should be commas before and after "Shelley."

"We don’t need to know your personal history right now." "...right now" is an interesting choice--like they'll need to know it later, but it can wait. I'd leave that end bit off, myself.

"Thank you Al, but no, talking about it is making me feel better." There should be a period after "no" and I'd say, "Talking about it makes me feel better." That sounds more like it's a progressive thing because talking about it right now doesn't seem to be making her feel better right now, which is how the sentence seems to sound as it is.

""Anyway…..” Melanie stopped to lightly blow her nose and wipe her eyes before continuing." Erase those extra periods and whatnot going on there. Just 3 dots/periods for an ellipses. *Wink*

"I have always sworn that I’d never fall in love like that again. But I also know things can happen, and that I may. If I do, I will die if he dies. I do not want to suffer that kind of loss again." Stupid brain injury! This part sounds familiar and I'm pretty sure I'm supposed to be connecting this with some other character, but I can't remember! *Pthb* Bad Jody! I'm a pretty terrible reviewer! lol But nice loop back to this, you know, for the rest of the world who can remember things. *Wink*

"...I studied at USC and managed to get a Master’s Degree in Business. I’ve worked with a variety of corporations, and am very good at meeting people, preparing marketing documents & materials. I excel at that kind of work." YAY USC!!! *Laugh* Anyway, you used an ampersand when you should probably use a real "and." *Wink*

"No, my sister Sarah is taking care of her back in the Bay Area while I’m here." Commas both before and after "Sarah."

"Al couldn’t decide what to choose, and thought about Spaghetti & Meatballs. It was Melanie who tsk’d tsk’d over that, and said, “What’s your favorite meat? You can’t just have Spaghetti & Meatballs in a place like this. Try their ‘Pollo Osso Buco’." Not sure you should go with the ampersand here, either, but I'm slightly more accepting of it because maybe that's how the menu presents it. *Wink* Also, the period should go inside the apostrophe at the end of "Buco."

"There was good reason for this too. In the world of modern technology one couldn’t be too careful. A careless word uttered in the wrong location may lead to a competitor mimicking your product. Each of them knew of these dangers, and naturally kept their work out of the discussion." Probably a comma between "this" and "too." Probably one after "technology." Not sure about the comma after "dangers." Maybe. Maybe not.

"Cellular phones are here, there will be a day when they’re as indispensable as our computers are." Period after "here."

"Al leaned back, hands linked behind his head and said, “What do you mean Rick?" Comma before "Rick."

"Well Al, first we have to make a cell phone, huh." Probably a comma before "Al" as well.

"Easy for you to say that is. But go on…" Funny, but who is speaking? Probably a comma after "say."

"Wait a minute Rick. A user on a cell phone has a contract with a carrier, don’t they?" Comma after "minute."

"What if you could then have the phone search for a valid cellular signal, and switch the phone to that network?" Not sure this comma is necessary.

"Call it ‘The Millennial Phone. It’s short enough, yet it’s different from all other phone names." You need the other apostrophe thingy after "Phone."

"Because naming a new product is very important. More important than most people who create them realize. We’re in the new millennium now, it fits. Universal is a bit redundant is all." Dash or something before "it fits."

"Nick nodded as he looked at her with new respect. “You’ve been with us for a couple of hours now, but that one little statement says quite a bit about you, and how you fit in."" Not sure you need that comma after "you."

The rest of the evening passed quickly, and they all retired for the night. They haven't actually retired yet...just saying. *Wink* Also, pretty sure there's no need for that comma.

"Well hell, I’m staying there too! Cancel your cab, ride with me!" Probably a comma after "there." I'd put a dash between "cab" and "ride."

"They’re locals, Nick lives on Staten Island, Rick’s in an apartment on the Upper Wide of Manhattan. They’re both heading to the subway. I took that here, but walked the last bit, a longer walk than I thought. So cab it is for me." Period or dash after "locals." Period after "Island." Is Rick's apartment on the Upper WEST SIDE of Manhattan? lol Period after "bit." Comma after "thought" and after "it is."

"Al was lost deep in thought about the cell phone project, Melanie spent her time texting her sister Sarah and Shelley. Once at the hotel they parted ways, agreeing to meet after breakfast in the morning." Semi-colon or period after "project." Commas before and after "Sarah." Right now it seems she has 2 sisters and you just made a mistake using a singular "sister." *Wink* Comma after "hotel."

"Rick & Nick were busy meeting with their Engineering Design team to get their new product design finalized." Don't use the ampersand here. Go ahead and use "and" between "Rick" and "Nick."

"Al replied, “I’m not leaving until Wednesday on an early United flight.”
“I’m flying United too!"" You need a line space between these two lines. *Wink*

"Won’t Rick want us working though?" Comma probably after "working."

"Don’t worry about Rick, he won’t mind either of us taking some time off." Period after "Rick" instead of a comma.

Al called that night and changed his flight to Tuesday morning, and arranged for him and Melanie to sit together. Not sure you need that comma...maybe.

"The two of them visited about every tourist attraction in the New York City area." Uh, in my experience, this isn't really possible, but whatever. Suspend belief. *Laugh*

"They spent the evening walking Times Square, and Melanie shocked Al by leaning in to kiss him lightly in Central Park." Not sure that comma is needed here.

“Wh, What was that for?” I'd write, "Wh--What was that for?" But that 2nd "what' might not need to be capitalized. Not 100% sure.

"You are quite the gentleman Al." Comma before "Al."

“Well, you told me last week how you love hiking, how you take your beautiful walking stick with you when you go. So, I got this for your walking stick at West Point.” No idea what "this" is. I assume it's the token previously mentioned, but I don't have a walking stick and, unless it's the rubber part on the bottom, which I'm assuming it isn't, I don't know what it is. Will this be cleared up later?

"Melanie, it is special, it’s from you after all…” Comma after "you."

“Melanie, what’s gotten in to you all of a sudden? I mean I love it, but what’s going on?” Comma after "mean."

“I’m sorry Al, I didn’t mean to come on like that. I haven’t kissed a man since my… since my husband died. This weekend has been terrific, I guess I lost my head there for a minute.” Comma before "Al." Period after "terrific."

"Melanie, you didn’t come on to me, you just surprised me. But lose your mind again soon will you?" Period after "...didn't come on to me."

"She grabbed his hand as they continued their walk. Dinner was perfect, both were sorry to see the night end." Huh? When did they have dinner?

"Al kissed her goodnight at her door, then slowly walked to his room." I'd get rid of this and the part about walking home from dinner. We assume they enjoyed dinner.

"The next morning they met earlier than usual, and caught a cab to the airport. Traffic was terrible, and they ran late. After checking in, they realized they needed to hustle to get to their gate on time. As they were walking, Al felt himself getting a little dizzy. “Melanie, let’s sit down, I feel a little dizzy." I don't think you need those first 2 commas in those first 2 sentences. You use the word "dizzy" twice really close. Maybe use "woosy" (don't know how to spell it) for one or he could just say he doesn't feel right.

Over 51k characters now. I'm sure you are MORE than sick of me telling you your commas are all wrong. *Rolling* I hope I'm more right than wrong... *Think* ALMOST DONE! Only 2 sections left! YAY!!! I CAN DO THIS!!! I'd totally go to bed if there was a "draft" tool on reviews, but I don't see one. I would TOTALLY FREAK OUT if my computer restarted itself and lost all of this!!! It restarted recently, so shouldn't, but I don't trust it. I'm almost done. Sure, it's like 1 am, but who needs sleep? *Bigsmile*

You'd better seriously review all my suggestions. I'm not promising they are correct, but I nominated you, so I at least expect you to do your best to win. *Bigsmile* You got this! *Hug1**hug**Hug2*

Okay, there's a line of tildes--the next to last one. I'm trying to keep it so you can keep up with where I am, otherwise all my suggestions are worthless. lol

"Jon finished relating his story with tear filled eyes. He was surprised to see tears in Ishmael’s eyes also. He had never noticed Michelle entering the room, she was seated next to Ishmael, her head buried in his shoulders sobbing softly." That should be "tear-filled," I'm pretty sure. Period after "room." Comma after "shoulders." How did Jon not notice her there? Was he not looking at Ishmael as he talked? Seems a bit odd, but whatever. lol

"“Why is she crying Ishmael?” Jon was beside himself, he never intended for Michelle to hear the whole story, and definitely never intended to make her cry." Comma before "Ishmael." Period after "himself." But I'd also try to think of some gesture or action to show he's beside himself. This caught me off-guard because at first he seemed just curious or whatever.

"Instead of answering Jon’s question, Ishmael asked one of his own. “Are you sure that was your last mission Jon?”" Comma after "mission." I"m confused. I thought he was going back. But he's not? I don't get it.

"“Yes Ishmael. Somehow, I need to go back and see Melanie again. So I’m done. I need to be with her, more than you or anyone else could ever know.” Jon placed in his pocket, his fingers wrapping around a small object that hadn’t been there before. He smiled inwardly, and knew he would see Melanie again. Her gift would drag him back, it had to!" Comma after "yes." So, he IS going back to see Melanie? But how if he's not doing another mission? Confusion for me. But it's after 1 am and I have a brain injury, so check with someone else. *Laugh* Is that "Jon placed HIS FINGERS in his pocket...?" Probably no comma after "inwardly." Perhaps a dash after "back."

"You know there’s no way to know where you’re going. Nor will I revive you again." Comma after "know?" Normally, yes, but in this case, I'm not sure...or am too tired to decide. *Laugh*

"Yes Jon, each time you’ve experienced another’s life, I’ve used these this equipment here to bring you back." Comma after "yes."

“I’ve never been able to ‘send you to another place and time’, that’s been random." The comma should be inside the quote thingy. Also, perhaps make it a dash between "time" and "that's," or just a period instead of a comma.

“I know Ishmael, but I have to try to go back.” Comma before "Ishmael."

“I guess all we can do is let you leave the project. Only you will know where you go. I won’t hear about this story, much as I want to.” Huh? So, he's leaving the project? But how will he go back? Confused. Hopefully it will all clear up soon. *Smile*

"I know, as they say, It is what it is." Period after "know." Quotes around "It is what it is." You can do double quotes. Or you can do single ones. Not sure if there is a right choice and don't care enough to look. *Bigsmile* Yep, lazy reviewer. lol

""Well, if you absolutely positive…. when you die this time Dad, I will not bring you back, nor...” Erase that period after the ellipses and capitalize "when" or just make it one sentence, but either way, get rid of that period. *Wink* Comma before "Dad."

“Yes Jon, you’re my father. I’m Jeffrey, your son. You’ve been terminally ill for a few months now. I developed this advanced form of life support, but I guess it’s become more of a Life Reviver. This time, when you die, your soul will go wherever it should go, and that will be it.” Comma before "Jon." Why can't he revive him again? Still confused.

"Jon looked at Jeffrey/Ishmael in disbelief..." Nice crossing to ensure we know what's going on. *Wink*

"Oh Jon, there’s so many questions I want to ask you, but know I can’t!" Comma after "oh" and why can't she ask questions?

“Oh God, I’m so tired, I need to ….” Attach the ellipses to "to" and get rid of the period at the end.

"The EKG beeped a couple more times, then emitted a shrill sound as it flat-lined." Nice description.

"Suddenly Jeffrey let out a soft moan and collapsed into a nearby chair. Shaking uncontrollably, he held his head in his hands as he wept. Michelle moved by his side and put her arm around his shoulder. She held him close until he quieted, the sobs softening, then ending altogether. “I’m sorry honey, I don’t know what came over me.”" Comma after "suddenly" and after "sorry."

“It’s fine my love, after all you’ve been through with him these last few months, I would be shocked if you didn’t need a moment to grieve.” Comma after "fine."

"Taking Michelle’s hand, Jeffrey said, C’mon honey, let’s call this in and get him cared for properly." You need beginning quotation marks at "C'mon honey" as well as a comma before honey.

“We have to make a few calls Jeffrey, someone needs to come get your father after all.” Comma before "Jeffrey." Probably a period after "Jeffrey." Comma after "father." And again I'm confused. I thought he was saying they were going to call someone to get him, now she's the one saying they need to?

“He’s fine where he is for now. Brian was automatically notified the moment he flatlined." He just said, "C’mon honey, let’s call this in and get him cared for properly." I'm confused...still or again or whatever.

"I’m sorry Melanie, how long was I out?" Comma before "Melanie."

“Only a couple of minutes, but I couldn’t rouse you, I thought I’d lost you! I don’t want to lose a man again, I told you that the first night.” First, a couple of minutes is a pretty long time. Second, where is the airport staff? They should have been all over him after just a minute or so, not to mention, people standing around staring as she's trying to rouse him...just saying. *Wink* I'd change that comma between "you" and "I" to a dash. Did I mention I like dashes. *Bigsmile* Semi-colon, perhaps, after "again" and "I."

“No, not yet Al. But give us a little more time.” Comma before "Al."

“Melanie, we have all the time in the world. We haven’t missed our flight have we?” Comma after "flight."

“No, the gate is right over there Al.” "Comma after "there."

"Tomorrow is the 12th, Michelle will be turning eight!" Period after "the 12th."

Wow! Pretty sure I'll understand this more in the morning, but I like it! I get that it's flight 93, but the whole space-time continuum has me a bit thrown off. Perhaps I just need some sleep. *Rolling*

Thank you for sharing! I definitely think it's worthy of a Quill nomination! *Heart*

Fyi, over 58,900 characters in this review. *Wink*


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
21
21
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (4.5)
AWESOME! THANK YOU! I did not know this!

I only see 1 thing you really should change and another that would be good if you changed.

The thing you should change is the sentence, "If you click on any folder you want to organize and it will display a list of your files." Either take out "If you" or take out the "and" in the middle. *Smile*

The other thing is the list of titles has some correct and some incorrect capitalization. The only reason I don't say this is on the list of things you really should change is because we all probably have a mistake or two in our titles. lol But I do think it would be better if you had them all at least more correct than they are now. *Bigsmile*

Thank you, again, for this!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
22
22
Review of Juliette  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Great story! I love how you made the voices seem so real like using "Oooeee" and "Where we going" instead of "Where are we going" because, in reality, that's how folks talk. Great job! I also like "...agencies known by initials." That's a great description! It lets us decide what agencies. *Smile*

The only issue I had is sometimes I wasn't sure who was talking or, even if you said who it was, I wasn't sure, well, who that was. Maybe a little more character description? Or carry it on a little farther like give a partial description, then a bit farther down, describe a little more, but reference a past description? An example of that might be describing one as having a shock of hair that falls across his forehead and say his name is Bob. Then later mentioning that Bob tries to wipe away the shock of hair from his forehead, but it immediately falls back into place. But keep in mind, I have a brain injury, so maybe it's just me. *Bigsmile*


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
23
23
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 18+ | (3.5)
Just so you know, I really hate reviewing. But I'll do this because you asked.

First, I always make all my stuff a bigger font as there are so many older people on here, but that's me. *Wink* I use 4 pt. I'm not sure what the original font is, though.

I'd also suggest a space between paragraphs. Then when you are jumping to a new time or place, you can do something like

----------
or
*****
or something along those lines. The breaks between paragraphs give our eyes a place to rest. Not to mention, if the lines go too long, it helps ensure we know where the breaks are. After all, the line length isn't dependent on when you stop writing as much as on the width of our window we are reading it in. *Wink*

In the 1st paragraph, I like that you used the word "morn" instead of "morning." Nice change. Same paragraph, you said, "...the sheets were soiled with more than just his own excretions." At first I thought it meant they'd slept together, but then when you said he didn't know her, I was confused. Maybe it will become clear what these excretions are, but at the moment I'm confused. (I review as I read because I don't like reviewing so I'm definitely not going to read for first impressions, then go back and reread for the review. You get what you get from me. lol)

The next paragraph, "As he was finishing a final brush of his graying red hair with a tortoiseshell comb, 'clank, clank, clank' went the knocker against the ship cabin door that he had found on the shore near where he was wont to vacation during the hottest part of the summer in Seekhome." That's just 1 giant sentence. First, a sentence isn't a whole paragraph. Second, this is long and unwieldy. Maybe try something like "...went the knocker against the ship cabin door. He had found that door on the shore near..." It's less rambley that way. (Yes, I know "rambley" isn't a word.) *Wink*

There should be a comma, not a colon before she says, "Let me in, love." And there should probably be a comma after "dry" when you describe her "...dry, cracked lips..."

I like the style of writing and the details like the ship's door and the area of town where he lives, even though it means nothing to me. lol It adds interest, IMO. *Smile*

Several corrections in the section about Tim. Fyi, you have me intrigued. I'm guessing she's a ghost. I thought maybe so when she was at the door with Thane, but then thought maybe not. I guess I'll find out. I HOPE I'll find out. lol Anyway, to the corrections...

"She turned to face him, her husband, (comma) Tim Michaels, (comma) was still wearing his Guard Captains uniform. (period) (capitalize W) "Why haven’t you changed out of your uniform?" (question mark) she asked. (period) (capitalize W) "We have to go to dinner at the palace in 45 tolls." (capitalize H) Her life began with a kiss. (period or semi-colon, if you prefer) she had no memory of anything prior to the kiss." You seem to have stopped capitalizing the beginning of sentences for some reason.

I love the description of Tim finding her in the "devil's hour." (Needs an apostrophe, btw.) Great descriptive idea here!

(Capitalize W--I'm not going to correct all the capitalizations, just know you need to capitalize the beginning of each sentence. *Wink* ) "Where the priests would burn the burn the king in effigy to appease the gods of the sea..." I assume you see the problem with the sentence and the word burn. *Wink* "...ensure a bountiful harvest. (period, then capitalize the Y) "You can stay with me until we can find a more permanent solution."" Though I think usually speaking is it's own paragraph unless it's mixed in with describing the person's actions of voice or whatever. But keep in mind, I'm not a professional reviewer. *Wink*

It's a little confusing where it says that Tim suggested they get married, then suddenly they apparently are without mention of it. Consider moving the part about who married them to just after he suggested it. Also, you are having capitalization problems again. Review the whole thing for capitalizing the beginning of each sentence and also the beginning of each quote when a person speaks. Also, if you don't have a period before a quote, you probably need a comma. I won't correct all those, either. I do like that she used a "judicious" amount of makeup. Good word choice. *Smile*

"...he was sitting on a bench in the magistrates square." That should be "magistrate's" and you forgot the period after "square." I just noticed you also didn't have an apostrophe when you mentioned "magistrate's quarter" above this part.

I like how you describe time in "tolls." Nice touch.

When she's just coming to, when she's starting to hear the voices, you left out "The" in "Hangman's Daughter." Also, you said she felt, rather than heard her fingers as they bit into his neck...uh, yeah. It's normal to feel, rather than hear, your fingers. Did you mean that she heard, rather than felt? Otherwise, it's just odd.

After the attack, you say one of them is inching toward her. Did you mean away? It seems like he'd inch away, not toward, just my opinion. Also, "inching" (toward or away) is a common expression. You have a lot of good and different descriptors. I'd suggest you see if you can find something better here.

Okay, I've already spent over a half hour and I'm not even half finished. Did I mention I hate reviewing? lol How about a half a review? Maybe I'll do more later. I also never purposely review something so long because I can't keep my attention on it. No offense to your story. It's interesting. I just have a short attention span because of my brain injury. Anyway, you have a lot of work to do on capitalizations and cleaning up punctuation around quotes and such. I'll see about doing more later--maybe just in an e-mail since I don't know if I can add to this later. But no promises. I normally don't do review requests, especially of something so long. *Wink*

Good luck and keep at it. The rating isn't because the content isn't good. It's mostly just all the minor mistakes that are easily fixable. Fix them and I think I can re-rate it higher. But you have a lot of minor mistakes to clean up. *Wink* No worries. You got this! The content is the hard part and yours is pretty good. Remembering to capitalize at the beginning of a sentence is easy compared to being creative. *Wink* Good creativity!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
24
24
Review of Yet Again.  
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: E | (4.5)
"Yet again, I didn't hear the alarm." Normal, average sentence, yet I'm already interested...probably because it's happened to us all. lol

"I threw myself out of bed, shrieking like a banshee caught naked in the shower. I was late for the most important job of the day; fully aware of the reality that the plausibility of my justifications had been running drier than my bank account." I just got done with your story about Professor Pinkerton and his frustration with the new administrator. It was, no offense, disappointing. (We all write disappointing stuff, so don't freak out. *Wink* ) THIS, on the other hand, is already shaping up to be more like what I expect when I read your stuff. YAY! *Bigsmile*

""Jenny? Is breakfast ready?"I snarled..." You need a space between the quotation marks and "I."

"...with the hastiness of an NBC soldier wearing a radiation suit after Defcon 1." Would an average civilian know what an NBC soldier is? I'm not sure they would. Consider spelling it out or using another term. Also, I don't think it would be "after" Defcon 1. It would be either after the announcement of it or it would be during it. After it, things would be calming down, I'd think. *Wink* Yeah, I'm just being picky, but I can be because your writing is so great. It deserves the picky comments. *Bigsmile*

"I knew Jenny would always look stunning as the they she came to my home." Is that "the they she" part supposed to be there? If so, consider "...as the they/she came to my home."

"With a bellyful of calories in my stomach to keep my boiler burning..." Leave out "...in my stomach..." because you just said "bellyful." "With a bellyful of calories to keep my boiler burning..."

""Ground floor" creaked the elevator speaker..." Add a comma after "floor." ""Ground floor," creaked the elevator speaker..." Also, I'm not sure "creaked" is the best word here. Just think about it. Maybe you can think of a better one, especially considering you are then saying it's like a fake British accent.

"I threw myself in the back seat and barked "C'mon Alfred." You need a comma after "barked."

"...and always ended up clugging the city's arteries with their 2010s' junk." I assume you meant "clogging."

""It'll be my pleasure, Mr. Marlowe."" There seems to be an extra line space just above this sentence.

""Have a good day, Sir" said Alfred." You need a comma between "Sir" and the quotation marks after it.

""Yeah, Yeah. See ya" I answered, irritated by the umpteenth attempt from that pile of bolts to establish some "Master-Servant" kinda human relationship. But, at least, I knew I had to be thankful he would have never asked for a tip as a human drivers used to do." You need a comma after "ya." (Fyi, if you don't already know this, in American English, the period also always goes inside the quotation marks, but an exclamation point and question mark don't, depending on the usage.) I think you can do better than the description of "pile of bolts." You're more creative than that. *Bigsmile* Also, at the end, you have "a" with "drivers." Pick singular or plural. *Wink*

""Good Morning, Mr. Marlowe" followed my passage like the trail of a dress. I twitched my head in a series of nods, hating every and each moment of it." You want a comma after "Marlowe." I love the description using "the trail of a dress." So YOU (meaning super creative and outside-the-box as a description)! Usually the phrase is "each and every moment," not "every and each moment." That sounds weird. *Wink*

""He wished to inquire about your whereabouts, as it seems you didn't attend his birthday, last night."" It would be more normal sounding to say ""He wished to inquire as to your whereabouts. It seems you didn't attend his birthday last night.""

""...as long as your business in the red district of this fine town doesn't cease, your bank account will stay in the red."" Funny!

"There wasn't much difference between a whore and a businessman, to be honest. Both were just experts in trading valuable commodities: the former their own body, the latter their soul." Interesting. Creative. Insightful. I really like this and hope I can remember it. *Smile*

"I threw myself on the armchair and stared at the computer..." If you throw yourself "on" the armchair, it sounds more like you are sitting on the arm, or maybe the back. If you are sitting in it, you'd be throwing yourself "into" or possibly "in" (but "into" is more common).

I like this story much better than the one with Professor Pinkerton, but feel like it's a bit unfinished or like it didn't really go anywhere. What was the change in the character or situation? What was the purpose of the story? I don't really get it, but I think this just needs more ending and a bit of polish. For the most part, it's really good. Nicely done! This is more like the writing I expect from you. It's not your best, but it's definitely you. *Heart*


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
25
25
In affiliation with The Witch's House  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
"Pinkerton strutted through the school hallway..." I'm not sure "strut" is the best word choice here. This suggests he's proud of something, usually himself. But in this scene, he doesn't seem proud as much as frustrated, maybe even beaten down, which definitely isn't a strut.

Also, I have to say that the above paragraph is the first time I see a tiny hint of the Xarthin writing I know and love, but it's not even really there, either. I'm not sure if you were having an off time or if this item (especially the dialogue in the beginning) just doesn't lend itself to letting you shine or what, but it's just okay. Normally I am totally in love with your writing from the very first paragraph. This time, at least not yet, but let me keep reading. Maybe you need to rework the beginning. Maybe I just need to read further.

In the 2nd big paragraph, you say Professor Pinkerton "...kicked the air and snorted." First, that seems like something a kid or teen would do, not a full grown professor, though that's my opinion. Also, it's pretty cliche and definitely not something I'd expect from your writing. You definitely have better descriptions than that inside you. *Wink* You also have "...had the principal not rallied to the bureacraut’s defense..." but misspelled "bureaucrat." *Wink*

In the next paragraph you use the word "abstrusal." I assume you are just making fun of the administrator since that doesn't seem to be an actual derivative of that word. That was on purpose, right?

In the paragraph where he enters the class, you say, "Please be so kind to do your duty as class representative..." It's more common to say, "Please be so kind as to..." I saw it without "as" in some places, but less commonly

"Pinkerton gazed at the students flowing to their chairs. Just like bees after their queen he thought with a grin. Miss Vera Steiner had perfect grades, absolute command of everything he taught her, not to mention of the classmates she represented. There had never been a doubt in his heart that girl was the tip of a pilum eager to carve her way into the body of society." This is a little more of what I expect from you. Good job. *Smile*

"A leader should never show weakness he thought, trying to reassert himself." This is from the next paragraph. Normally when you show thinking, you put it in italics. I'm not great at this type of thing, but I think it would be "A leader should never show weakness, he thought, trying to reassert himself." (The quotation marks wouldn't be in your version.)

“Wasn’t today the day of the oral exam, Professor?” Since class is just beginning, they'd probably ask this in present tense with "Isn't today..."

"The boy mouthed what seemed to Pinkerton a mixture between an answer and a plea for mercy." Hilarious. Good job!

""...Today Mr. Stukov will be examined” said the teacher..." There should be a comma after "examined."

"“Professor Pinkerton, what is the meaning of this?” asked Mrs. Steiner.

“Exactly what I said, Miss Steiner.”

“With all due respect, we find this highly irregular—”" I think part of what I don't like is that the speech seems kind of stilted and fake--like you are trying to make it too academic. I've been to college and folks don't talk like that. lol

"...the boy was not able to distinguish an Ode of Horace from a fart." I don't care for the word "fart" here. I feel like he'd use a more academic term since all his speech is so high. But that's just my opinion. Maybe that's what you were going for, but since it's from the professor's point of view, I'm not sure I buy it.

"...Mr. Stukov today has well earned an A+, with my compliments” said Pinkertoon..." There should be a comma after "compliments." Basically, if you are doing any kind of "said" stuff after speaking (or before), there should be a comma. And I'm not sure if you know this, but at least in American English, the comma ALWAYS goes inside the quotation marks. In British English, it varies, or so I hear, but I say in this case you should adapt the American way since it's easier. *Bigsmile*

"...eyes flashing with the rage of a Gorgon." As usual, I've used Google several times throughout reading your piece. lol Nice addition here, for sure.

"A lesson you will have to learn once you graduatd." Note the typo at the end there. *Wink*

“And what kind of lesson would that be, Professor?” I'd like some sort of description of her as she's speaking here. Otherwise it seems like just a normal question, IMO.

"The teacher shrugged. “As I was saying, once you leave these hallowed halls you will enter the real world. You will get a job, probably in some company making soap, woodwork or whatever else our consumer society loves to consume. And no matter the amount of knowledge or wits you possess, you will no doubt end up taking orders day after day from a moronic boss who will be less intelligent, less skilled, less capable, less knowledgeable than any of you. And he, or she, or whatever else sexual identity this age of profligates is able to conceive, will receive all the credit for all your achievements and hard work, a higher paycheck, better benefits, a wider office and longer vacations. This is but a taste of what is bound to happen.”" Very interesting lesson here. Though I'm not sure about the sexual identity thing. I know where it's coming from and I get it, but it seems perhaps a bit out of place since there was no reference to anything like that before.

"Like a Centurion leading legionaries he thought with a smirk and a tinge of pride." Again, I'd use italics. "Like a Centurion leading legionaries, he thought with a smirk and a tinge of pride."

"“Vox Populi, Vox Dei” said Pinkerton, bursting into laughter." Several times you use Latin without translating. I'd suggest a translation so the reader can get the best benefit from the quote. Most folks are probably too lazy to google it. *Wink*

Well, I'm not sure how I feel about this story except perhaps disappointed--Sorry. I mean, it wasn't bad. But it wasn't your typically awesome stuff. I'm not sure if you were off or what. It's an interesting concept, though. *Smile*


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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