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Printed from http://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/sjcloudxiii
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8 Public Reviews Given
Public Reviews
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Review of Dawnrunner  
for entry "Part 1 - Chapter 1
Review by Spencer Stoner
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
A very good start! I will read the rest, I assure you. I want to find out what happens next. That's the sign of a well written story, I think.

I just have a grand total of four little things to nitpick (and, believe me, that is all they are):


I think it was Stephen King that said something like 'the road to hell is paved with adverbs'. I copied and pasted the only egregious example (emphasis added) I could find to make my point:

I groan and roll my eyes. “Vince, please!” I push myself against his chest and try failingly to do the whole bat-your-eyes thing girls do when they’re asking for a favour. “Just give me five more minutes then I’ll come down, I promise.”

She can have no confidence in the maneuver but she wouldn't be the one to decide if it succeeds or fails. That comes from Vincent's reaction which shows that it obviously didn't work. So "failingly" is unnecessary.


My second point comes from the next sentence:

Vincent looks at me like I’m the bad dog trying to talk its way out of leaving a mess on the carpet.

I get what the sentence means but it just needs to be cleaned up a bit to make it clearer. One reading it in a hurry could be confused whether the dog was trying to leave a mess on the carpet or not or, what I gather it to truly mean, a dog trying to get out of trouble for leaving a mess.


Third is the matter of Australia. In the beginning, you mention that it is the continent formerly known as Australia but then, in the Dawnrunner note, it says that she is to leave the island of Australia. Either introduce a new name for the human sanctuary with the letter or simply keep Australia and lose the "formerly known as" portion in the beginning. Your choice.

The final point I want to make comes down to personal style, I guess, so take it for what its worth. At the very end of the chapter, you say that Carliah is "thoroughly overwhelmed". Then she lays down and goes to sleep. I think you need to show her being overwhelmed rather than mentioning she was (or in addition, since this is written from her perspective). Then, maybe, have her struggle to fall to sleep or just be so exhausted from being overwhelmed she nods off with ease.


That's it for this chapter. I really am enjoying the story so far. I just wish that the compliments filled up more space than minor nitpicking but what can you do? Also, I figured posting reviews with each chapter would be more beneficial for both of us rather than trying to jam everything into one enormous review. That way I don't have forget any examples of elements I like or specific editorial points I want to make as we go.

I hope you find this helpful.
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Review of Fair Island  
Review by Spencer Stoner
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
That wasn't bad at all. It works stand alone or, with the ambiguity of the ending (easy to infer that he was eaten, but who knows for sure?), could be built into something more. I love stories that do that.

Any of the issues I have are minor, even if describing them takes up more of this review than the compliments. The pacing is a little jerky. Lucas goes from 'Ooh look, hot chicks!" to 'I will confront them and force them to explain their wickedness!' pretty suddenly. It's difficult, especially if a story has to fit within a certain length or other limitations for a contest or something, but I would have like to see his uneasiness develop more gradually.

Just a little typo near the end where Aerya "sand" instead of said something. Easy to miss since spell check wouldn't catch it.

I am still curious as to why Lucas was spared while they seemed to go for whoever was the munchie du jour at the end pretty immediately. I guess that's why I see it being able to continue on even after the well executed "jump scare" ending.
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Review of A Penny  
Review by Spencer Stoner
Rated: E | (4.5)
It's kind of funny how a little OCD can turn into something so sweet. Oddly enough, my best friend shares this philosophy about pennies laying on the ground. Congratulations! I think you tapped a hitherto unknown zeitgeist in the populace!

Technically speaking, I didn't really notice anything that stood out to me. Thanks for the good, if short, read!
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