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1,174 Public Reviews Given
1,606 Total Reviews Given
Review Style
I attempt a well-rounded review where I look at the item from a writer's and reader's perspective. I'll tell you what I liked and what I think could be strengthened. I like to think I'm a courteous and helpful reviewer.
I'm good at...
attention to detail. If there's a typo, I'll find it!
Favorite Genres
Sci-Fi, Horror, Mystery, Thriller, Drama, Satire, and more
Least Favorite Genres
Romance, Religion, Sports
Favorite Item Types
Short Stories, Poetry, Essays
Least Favorite Item Types
Novels (I just don't have that much time)
I will not review...
There is very little I won't review. Try me! *Smile*
Public Reviews
Previous ... 1 2 3 4 -5- 6 7 8 9 10 ... Next
101
101
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi Happy Spring

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts

Such a sweet, touching story! I thought the end was particularly beautiful. Nicely done. *Smile*

Very descriptive writing! I could easily picture everything here, and I loved the end scene. I thought you did very well to explain the "fire flowers" without spelling it out for the readers. Well done!


Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.

With her back resting against one of the pilings that supported the long pier.
This isn't a full sentence. While I believe there is room for bending grammar rules in creative fiction, this stood out to me. You might want to have a look at it. It's up to you, of course. *Smile*

The night sky held a thousand stars and enormous full moon.
I believe the word "an" should be placed before "enormous."

with her own family on day.
on *Right* one

Their magical,” Amy whispered.
Their *Right* They're

*Bullet* My only other suggestion is about the character names. For me, when characters have the same beginning letter (here, Allie, Abby and Amy), I can get confused easily. I was able to keep them clear in my mind while reading this, but I wonder if other readers may have the same confusion or if it's just me. *Blush* I just wanted to give you something to think about. It's up to you, of course. *Smile*


My Rating


4.0 - A very beautiful story. I enjoyed this. *Smile*

Thanks for sharing and good luck!


Sincerely,
spidey

102
102
Review of Homage  
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi NickiD89

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts

Great opening paragraph! It gives the reader a lot of important information (by showing, not telling) and sets the tone for the rest of the story. Very well done!

Excellent writing here! Your writing is eloquent, descriptive and flawless, making this an enjoyable read. Also, you appear to have knowledge of the terminology associated with the subject matter, which lends credence to your writing.

I really felt for Murph here. You've done well to connect with the readers' emotions, I think, and I even felt my eyes filling up at the end. Great job! *Smile*


Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.

past the pier from where the fireworks would be launched
Just a minor thing, but I don't think the word "from" is needed here. It's not incorrect, but I think the sentence could be strengthened without it.


My Rating


4.5 - Excellent story! I truly enjoyed reading this.

Thanks for sharing and good luck. *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

103
103
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi Emilyisawesomeagain !

Overall Thoughts:

What a cool idea for a contest! I love creative prompts like this! I think they force the participant to be creative and to think about their words a little differently than they might have before.

I think contests like this can be very useful tools in improving writing. *Smile*

Great use of WritingML to set up your contest page! *Delight*

Title/Rating/Genres:

Great title & intro! They both give important information to the viewer about what your contest entails.

I'm not sure you need the ASR rating. I didn't see anything that would be above E, and since your rules require only E-rated entries (posted directly into message posts), I don't think you'll need a higher rating. That's up to you, of course.


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*
*Bullet* My only confusion was with this line:

FWI The prizes awarded depend on the number of entries

What is FWI? Did you mean FYI? *Blush*


*Star*My Rating*Star*

4.0 - Great contest!

I'll be featuring this as one of my picks in my upcoming Contests & Activities Newsletter. *Wink*


Sincerely,
spidey
review sig by Ye Olde Curiosity & Magick Shoppe
104
104
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (3.0)
Hi marcusl

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts

A cute story with an important lesson. I love stories in which a young child teaches a wise lesson to an older person. Children seem to be capable of such wisdom. *Smile*


I like that this takes place at New Year's. I think most interpreted the prompt image as the 4th of July, so placing your story at a different holiday (one which also involves fireworks) made your story stand out.

Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.

*Bullet* I think the story could use a little more detail. I found myself wanting to know more of the settting. I didn't get a clear feeling of it while reading.

*Bullet* My only other qualm with this story is that it seems a little unrealistic. I think if you added some more emotion here, perhaps the main character arguing with himself (some internal monologue, perhaps) that actually shows his gradual change instead of telling the reader that he's changed. It just seemed like a very sudden, dramatic change, but a little unrealistic. Just my thoughts. *Smile*


My Rating


3.0 - A good story. Thanks for sharing and good luck!


Sincerely,
spidey

105
105
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hi Steve adding writing to ntbk.

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


Sandersonville certainly seems like an ideal living spot! I think you've done well to create an all-American feel here as well as that "small town USA" feel. I often find stories lacking a good setting, but this one certainly succeeds in that area. Very well done!

Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.



The location of the display is the same every year, almost to the end of the pier, with safety in mind the water receives all of the stray sparks that could otherwise start a fire.
This felt like a run-on sentence to me. Perhaps if you edited, for instance:

The location of the display is the same every year, almost to the end of the pier, with safety in mind as the water receives all of the stray sparks that could otherwise start a fire.

OR:

The location of the display is the same every year, almost to the end of the pier. With safety in mind, the water receives all of the stray sparks that could otherwise start a fire.

It's up to you, of course. *Smile*

with the birds eye view
I believe it should be *Right* bird's-eye view

since it's founding
it's *Right* it's

They're not stuffed shirts as one would imagine, in fact quite the opposite is true.
This is a comma splice (two main clauses combined with a comma) which is grammatically incorrect. To correct this, use one of these:

They're not stuffed shirts as one would imagine; in fact quite the opposite is true.

OR:

They're not stuffed shirts as one would imagine. In fact quite the opposite is true.

*Bullet* I had a difficult time seeing this as a short story. For me, short stories have conflict and resolution, and I didn't see those here.


My Rating


3.0 - While you've set up a great tone and setting here, to me this lacked some elements of a successful short story. I did enjoy reading it, and I thank you for sharing this.

Good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

106
106
Review of Independence Day  
Review by spidey
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Hi Shannon

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


What a great start! The first few sentences pulled me immediately into the story and grabbed my attention. I couldn't wait to see where this story was going. *Smile*

This is so emotional! I felt particularly attached to the main character/narrator, due to her being the victim in this situation, as well as the story being presented in her point-of-view (good choice there). I liked that she had various emotions through this. It wasn't just anger, but also disappointment and sadness, and even a little bit of hope, perhaps. Nicely done!


Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.



*Bullet* My only suggestion would be to add just a little more to make this story unique. On the surface, it's almost a typical story of betrayal. I would have liked to have seen something to make this story just a little different from the usual story of an affair breaking up a marriage. Just a thought. *Smile*


My Rating


4.5 - An excellent short story! For me, it's your writing that makes this piece really shine. I love how you've woven the setting and prompt image into this story.

Thanks for sharing your work, and good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

107
107
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (2.0)
Hi T.J. Wrathe

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


What a touching story! I found this quite beautiful, an exploration of the relationship between a father and daughter, and their last Independence Day together. I think you did very well in showing that Amy cares about her father very much. Good job! *Smile*



Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.


Daddies Independence Day
(your title) I believe it should be: Daddy's Independence Day

daydreams disruptor.
daydreams *Right* daydream's

Her fathers live in nurse
fathers *Right* father's

“Good morning Susan.” Amy managed to squeak
I believe there should be a comma after "morning" and the period after "Susan" should be a comma instead.

not far from her families’ home.
families' *Right* family's

He wanted to get as close to the ocean as he could, it was something he always loved and Amy dare not deny her father this one last request.

This is what's called a comma splice, which occurs (according to "the Writer's Brief Handbook") when a writer uses only a comma . . . to join two or more main clauses. To fix this, eitehr change the comma after "could" to a semicolon, or change it to a period and start a new sentence with "It . . ."

Amy knocked on her fathers’ bedroom door.
fathers' *Right* father's

Yeah sweetie, I’m here.” John replied.
The period after "here" should be a comma instead.

recliner next to her fathers’ bed.
fathers' *Right* father's

Pleased with her fathers’ response
fathers' *Right* father's

but ill be back in time for the fireworks show
ill *Right* I'll

Ill be fine here until you get back
Ill *Right* I'll

her thoughts soon began to wonder.
I believe "wonder" should be: wander

Amy gasped and jumped backwards tripping over the curb and landing in the green grass.
Since your other verbs end in -ed here, I believe "landing" should be: landed

*Bullet* I have to suggest that you consider adding spaces in between your paragraphs. While not generally the format for printed work, on a computer screen, those extra spaces really make the story easier on your readers' eyes. *Wink*

*Bullet* New lines of dialogue should start new paragraphs. This also will make the story easier to follow for your readers.

*Bullet* You seem to have some difficulty with apostrophes here. Perhaps this can help you: "Singles, Plurals and Apostrophes

*Bullet* There are a lot of grammatical errors/typos in this story. I know in my personal experience, reading on a computer screen can "trick" my eyes into glossing over mistakes. I've found that printing the story and reading it on paper is very effective in finding typos. Perhaps it could work for you, too. *Smile*

My Rating


2.0 - I do think this story could use a bit of revising and editing. For me, it feels like it could use more character interaction to develop the other relationships even more. (Perhaps adding a scene of a conversation between Amy and Kevin could show the exact nature of their relationship?)

This is a great idea for a story, and you've done quite well in creating a touching and beautiful tone, as well as an intricate relationship between Amy and her father. I hope you'll continue working on this story, as I think it could be quite an excellent piece of writing! *Smile*

I did enjoy reading, and I thank you for sharing your work. Good luck!

Sincerely,
spidey

108
108
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (3.5)
Hi sayan

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!


Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


An interesting story that reads like an autobiography. This comes across as very personal. I like your use of dialogue here. The minimal dialogue seems to enhance the strong emotional aspect of the story. Nice touch!


Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.



I slowly am losing my mind
To me, "I am slowly losing my mind" would sound a little better. It's up to you, of course.

reply tones
The word "reply" doesn't strike me as an adjective (describing "tones"). Perhaps "replying tones" instead?

so that they might comfort.
This phrase didn't sound right to me. Perhaps "so that they might comfort me" or "so that they might find comfort" instead?

You're inability
You're *Right* Your

I'm so sorry",
The comma belongs inside the quotation mark here.



*Bullet* Your first sentence runs on a bit. While I believe grammar isn't as strict in creative fiction and I think run-on sentences don't necessarily hurt a short story, your first sentence seems a bit much to me. It's up to you, the writer, of course, but I felt it could be strengthened with shorter, declarative sentences.

*Bullet* I couldn't place the setting here. You have a guy foraging for food, then someone standing by a locker, then opening a door to a prison. Where is this taking place? Are these references to the past? You might want to make it clearer for your readers.


My Rating


3.5 - To me, this feels a little unfinished. I love your tone and I think you've got a great emotional connection here, but it didn't quite feel like a short story to me. You might want to consider adding more detail and making your story just a tad clearer to your readers. I have no problem with ambiguitiy or intentional vagueness, but I couldn't help wanting more here.


Sincerely,
spidey

109
109
Review of Dear Me  
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi Sticktalker !

I wanted to wish you a very Happy WDC Account Birthday! *Balloon1*

This is my review for "Dear Me [13+].


Overall Thoughts:


I love these! I totally meant to write one this year and sort of forgot... *Laugh*

I applaud you for seeming to know yourself so well! That's a difficult thing to do - to know ourselves enough to create realistic goals and motivations to complete those goals.

This is written clearly and in good order. I followed through easily, and I enjoyed the bits of humor here. Great job!

I also loved the informal feel to this letter. It feels like a real conversation with yourself. Nice choice!


Grammar/Spelling
(These are suggestions with regard to my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)


some statements saying that you own money to the eye surgeon,
I think "own" should be owe


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*


*Bullet* A little WritingML might spruce up this letter a little. I'm personally partial to {e:bullet} for lists, but even numbering your goals before listing them might add a nice touch to your letter. Just an idea. *Smile*


*Bullet* I also don't think the 13+ rating is needed. I didn't see anything here that would require a rating higher than E. (For more on WDC's rating policy, see "Content Rating System (CRS) [13+])


*Bullet* My only other suggestion would be to include motivational tools (and positive thinking) to help you. Set up a reward system for yourself. For instance, if you spend a certain amount of time writing/editing that novel, you can reward yourself with some time playing games. Also, you put yourself down a lot here. Perhaps you're just being realistic, but I think some optimism and belief in yourself could help you complete your goals. Perhaps the negativity ("If you can reach three of them I'll be pleased.") is just for comedic effect, though. The choices is yours, of course. *Smile*



*Star*My Rating*Star*


4.0 - A great "Dear Me" letter! I wish you the best of luck with your goals for the year! *Smile*

Happy WDC Birthday!


Sincerely,
spidey

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110
110
Review by spidey
In affiliation with  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi Ben Langhinrichs !

This is my review for "Do you review Moderators+? [E].

Overall Thoughts:

*Bullet* I'm one of the majority that voted for "Yes, I review all case colors." When I first joined the site, though, I think I remember being afraid to review moderators and above...

*Bullet* Speaking as a Mod, I don't get reviewed all that often, but I do find that I get reviewed much more if I give a review first. Maybe that has something to do with it? Maybe Mods review a little less than they did before or they're reviewing members who tend not to reciprocate (newbies)?

*Bullet* I like your variety of poll options here. It covers a good deal of opinions, and I'm very curious about the results!


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*

*Bullet* No suggestions, a perfect poll! *Bigsmile*



*Star*My Rating*Star*

5.0 - Excellent poll! An intriguing topic and most interesting responses! (So far, 3 people have had toast for breakfast!) *Laugh*

Keep on writing! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey


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111
111
Review by spidey
In affiliation with  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Hi there CHinson

Welcome to Writing.Com! If you have any questions, feel free to ask! *Smile*

This is my review for "Maintaining a Long Distance Relationship


Overall Thoughts:

A great article! I, too, have endured a long distance relationship and it's quite the challenge. My husband and I (we were dating at the time) maintained a long distance relationship for almost 2 years while we were in college. (We ended up transferring to the same school so we could be together) I know how difficult it can be, and you offer some great advice here! I think many people can learn from this! *Smile*


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not.
(In reference to any grammar/spelling suggestions these are suggestions made with my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)

I learned alot about myself that year
alot should be two words *Right* a lot


*Bullet* While I think it's good to maintain daily contact and share as much as possible, I also think it's important to allow space, too (like any relationship). If the other person doesn't call or text in one day, it's important not to overreact.

*Bullet* You'll need to up the rating on this since you mention sex. Any mention of sex (other than gender) requires a rating of 13+. For more on Writing.Com's rating system, see "Content Rating System (CRS)

*Star*My Rating*Star*

4.0 - A great article! Thanks for sharing and keep on writing! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey
"Noticing Newbies [13+]
"Reviewing @ Writing.Com [E]
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112
112
Review by spidey
In affiliation with  
Rated: E | (3.0)
Hi there unicoye

Welcome to Writing.Com! If you have any questions, feel free to ask! *Smile*

This is my review for "Our little words to our planet, earth


Overall Thoughts:

Awesome message here! I love that this reads like a personal statement from the people of Earth to the Earth itself. Very cool!

I thought this was rather powerful and thought-provoking. *Smile*


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not.
(In reference to any grammar/spelling suggestions these are suggestions made with my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)

However, its due to this brain power of ours
its *Right* it's

to see ourselves as the 'rulers'.
I think the period belongs inside the quote mark *Right* "rulers."

Then weird weathers,
Should weather be pluralized here? I wasn't sure if the word is accurately pluralized with an "s."

Here are somethings we want you to know.
somethings should be two words *Right* some things

All the things we create origin from you.
origin *Right* originate

Sorry for acting smart and complicate stuffs.
This didn't sound quite right to me. Perhaps complicating stuff instead?

Its billions and billions
Its *Right* It's

the fact that we are standing on your land don't change.

don't *Right* doesn't

*Bullet* I think it could be interesting to include some actual facts and terminology here. Perhaps you could talk about global warming, or gather some statistics on how humans are harming the Earth. It's up to you, of course, but I think that could strengthen your message even more. *Smile*

*Bullet* Some technical stuff - You might want to choose an item type other than "Other" for this, so people will find it easier. I think you could use Letter or Monologue, maybe. You also might want to rate this item, so it will show up in the public listings & get you more views. An E rating would be fine for the item and its intro.


*Star*My Rating*Star*

3.0 - A great start! Thanks for sharing your work, and keep on writing! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey
"Noticing Newbies [13+]
"Reviewing @ Writing.Com [E]
"Content Rating System (CRS) [13+]

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113
113
Review by spidey
In affiliation with  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hi Elaine !

Welcome to Writing.Com! If you have any questions, feel free to ask! *Smile*

This is my review for "Reflections of one's heart [E].

General Thoughts:

Wow, this is great! I see this is the start to a book you're planning to write, and I hope you finish it!


Strengths

*Bullet* I love how emotional this is. The feelings experienced by the narrator come across clearly, and although this feels quite personal to that person, this also feels general and realistic enough for anyone to relate to it.

*Bullet* Beautiful writing! Your writing here shines with vibrant imagery and descriptive phrases. I could feel everything along with the narrator.


Grammar/Spelling
(These are suggestions with regard to my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)

its a compulsion
its *Right* it's


Title/Rating/Genres:

*Bullet* Good title, and your intro tells the reader some important information about the item.

*Bullet* Your ratings and genres are appropriate. As this stands now, an E rating is fine, but I could easily see this needing a higher rating (depending on how much you're planning on showing). For information on WDC's rating system, see "Content Rating System (CRS) [13+]


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*

*Bullet* My only suggestion, and this isn't for what you have written here but for the rest of the book, is to hold back just a little on the emotional writing. I love the amount of emotion here, but if the entire book is written this way, I'm afraid you'll lose your readers' interest. Consider adding some action, dialogue, character interaction, etc. Just my thoughts. *Smile*



*Star*My Rating*Star*

3.5 - Great work! I'm rating this 3.5 in part because it's unfinished. I'd be happy to review and rerate once you add more! *Smile*

Thanks for sharing your work, and keep on writing! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey


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114
114
Review by spidey
In affiliation with  
Rated: E | (3.5)
Hi celticvampire !

Welcome to Writing.Com! If you have any questions, feel free to ask! *Smile*

This is my review for "No longer an innocent [E].

General Thoughts:

A very strong poem. This feels personal, but it's general enough for others to relate to its theme.

Strengths

*Bullet* I like how strong and personal this feels, which I think comes across well due to your use of accusations by the speaker. and exclamation points. This definitely has a strong tone to it.

*Bullet* I like the form. For me, the lack of rhyme or formal structure fits the tone well. It brings the emotion across. Good choice!


Grammar/Spelling
(These are suggestions with regard to my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)

then any other."
then *Right* than


Title/Rating/Genres:

*Bullet* Great title, and I like that your intro offers a challenge to your readers.

*Bullet* Your genres fit the poem well, but I think you should rate this so that it will show up on the public listings. More views means more feedback! A rating of ASR would be fine and your intro can be rated E.


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*

*Bullet* Your punctuation and capitalization seems rather inconsistent. If this is done on purpose (to strengthen the emotion and lack of structure), then I suppose it fits, but you might want to take another look at those elements. Just a suggestion. *Smile*

*Bullet* You challenge your readers to tell you what they think the poem is about, but honestly I had no clue. If you'd like your readers to know what's going on, you might want to offer a few more clues rather than being so general. That's up to you, of course.



*Star*My Rating*Star*

3.5 - Good work! Thanks for sharing! *Smile*

Keep on writing! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey


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115
115
Review of 8 Lines of Hope  
Review by spidey
In affiliation with  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi Pen !

Welcome to Writing.Com! If you have any questions, feel free to ask! *Smile*

This is my review for "8 Lines of Hope [E].

General Thoughts:

This must be a popular contest, as I've seen several of these 8-line poems recently. Yours definitely packs a great deal into such a limited space!

Strengths

*Bullet* Love the rhyme scheme! It manages to create a good rhythm for the reader to follow without becoming a distraction (something I find difficult to do myself). Great job!

*Bullet* You also have some great imagery here. I particularly like the "To guide us through marshes, a spear-like canoe" image! Beautifully done. *Smile*

*Bullet* I think anyone can relate to this poem and learn from its message of hope. Well done!


Grammar/Spelling
(These are suggestions with regard to my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)

I found no errors.


Title/Rating/Genres:

*Bullet* Good title. It reflects the content of the poem very well.

*Bullet* Your ratings and genres are perfectly chosen.


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*

*Bullet* I try very hard to come up with at least one suggestion, however small, because I feel there's always room for improvement. *Wink*

I do have one tiny suggestion for this line:

To lead through the alien realms of unknown,

To me, it felt like a period should be used at the end instead of a comma, though I understand if you're using the comma to stay consistent with the first 4 lines of your poem.



*Star*My Rating*Star*

4.5 - An excellent poem! Thanks for sharing your work! *Smile*

Keep on writing! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey


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116
116
Review of Christmas Lights  
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi nomlet !

I'm reviewing for "Anniversary Reviews and I'd like to wish you a Happy WDC Birthday! *Smile*
This is my review for "Christmas Lights [E].

Overall Thoughts:

*Bullet* I admit, I looked at the genres after I started reading. At first, I thought maybe this would be a horror story, but it became clear when I read this line: Do I have to get the box?

Very funny! That one line made me laugh out loud.


*Bullet* I was surprised at how well you were able to set the scene and tone in such a short amount of time. Very well done! Almost immediately, I had a good sense of what was going on and where this is taking place. Great job!


Title/Rating/Genres:

*Bullet* Your title & intro made me choose this one to read. It was the combination of the two that I found particularly intriguing.

*Bullet* Your ratings and genres are well-chosen.


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*
(In reference to any grammar/spelling suggestions these are suggestions made with my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)

and the christmas lights blinked
I believe "christmas" should be capitalized.


*Star*My Rating*Star*

5.0 - An excellent piece of micro-fiction. I loved this! A good read any time of the year! *Smile*

And once again, Happy WDC Birthday! *Balloon1*


Sincerely,
spidey

** Image ID #1565038 Unavailable **

117
117
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (5.0)
Hi there! *Smile*

I wanted to thank you for reviewing "Invalid Item, and I thought what better way than to give a review! *Bigsmile*

I love this reviewing activity!! What a great way to help members celebrate their WDC birthday!

Your forum is set up very well with great descriptions and instructions. I particularly like that you include directions on how to find out members' anniversaries, and that you offer a variety of merit badges for participants. Very cool!

You give very generous prizes and everything is stated clearly. Very well done!

A few little technical things:

(In your intro)
Help make members WDC anniversaries extra special.
I think it should be: members' WDC anniversaries

One thing we all like, is getting reviews.
I don't think the comma here is necessary, but that's up to you.



I wish you luck with this, and I think I'll be participating myself. What a great way to make members feel special and appreciated! I'm going to add a link to this forum on mine. *Smile*

*Heart*
spidey
118
118
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi Just an Ordinary Boo! !

This is my review for "Waiting by the seashore [E] as your reward for finding a hidden easter egg in my port through MaryLou 's Easter Egg Hunt! *Smile*


Strengths

*Bullet* Such beautiful language in this poem! The words you've chosen help paint the imagery vividly in the reader's mind, and it made the poem very enjoyable to read. You use excellent alliteration here, a repetition of consonant sounds that create a great tone for the poem. You use a combination of soft and hard sounding words ("whispers soft the gibbous moon" vs. "Cracks the sun’s rays caused / to ache whene’er they are dry,") which creates a clear image to the reader. Very well done!

*Bullet* It's this conflict, the rock versus the wave, that makes the poem interesting to me. You're not just describing an ocean scene (though you do that particularly well - although I've only visited the ocean twice in my life, you brought me back to those precious moments), but you're describing an intricate relationship. That makes the poem have depth and meaning. Good job!

*Bullet* I love the ending! I love that it's a bit open, leaving the reader with a few questions (and a hint at a comparison between this nature relationship and human relationships). It fit so perfectly!



Grammar/Spelling
(These are suggestions with regard to my understanding of grammar/spelling rules. If I'm mistaken or missing a regional difference in usage, I apologize in advance.)

One question:
Do they realize
the waves will return anon,
and again the winds shall scatter
laughter o’er the sandy shores.


Is this a question? Perhaps it should end with a question mark instead of a period? Just a thought. *Smile*


Title/Rating/Genres

Great title & intro! These are what made me choose this poem to read and review. They grabbed my attention well.

Your ratings and genres fit perfectly.


Suggestions
These are just suggestions. Feel free to use them or not. *Smile*

*Bullet* Although I loved the end (how it poses questions and feels open), I wondered if it was too obvious. The references to human relationships is also in the intro, and I had to wonder if the reference could be inferred without the last two lines. To me, it almost seemed as if you were telling the reader what they were supposed to feel or think about the poem, where I think it might be more effective if they come up with that connection on their own. Just my thoughts. It's up to you, of course. *Smile*



*Star*My Rating*Star*

4.5 - A wonderful poem! I truly enjoyed this one. It's beautiful, meaningful, and a great read! I'm glad I found it. *Smile*

Keep writing! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey


won in an auction
119
119
Review of Pirates Breakfast  
Review by spidey
Rated: ASR | (2.0)
Hi JeffreyDan

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


A good story that teaches a valuable lesson. I like that the reader can get something out of this story, just as Patty learns a lesson, too. It's a great idea for a story - Nature connecting with the two as Nick relates childhood stories to his teen daughter.

I have to ask, are you familiar with boating? Your writing on it seems to come from experience. Very well done!



Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.


Your title:
Pirates Breakfast
I think it should be *Right* Pirate's Breakfast

The small SUV parked in the small gravel field by the dock
Using the word "small" twice in the same sentence can really stand out. It's not incorrect, but you might want to consider revising, using a synonym for one of them.

Nick stepped out of the drivers side
I think "drivers" side should be *Right* driver's side or driver side

why we had to come out here so early." she said.
Change the period to a comma here *Right* early," she said.
There are a number of these errors throughout your story. You might want to take a closer look at your dialogue and edit accordingly.

Would she even notice it who seemed more interested in too-short shirts and golden jewelry?
This sentence sounded a bit awkward to me. Perhaps you might want to clear it up a little, something like, Would she, someone who seemed more interested in too-short shirts and golden jewelry, even notice it? Just my suggestion. *Smile*

"And then their's this old thing."
their's *Right* there's

and aluminum is pretty durable.
is *Right* was

"Lets get it over to the dock."
Lets *Right* Let's

*Bullet* There are quite a few more grammar and spelling errors in this story. If you wish to get a line by line review and have all of them pointed out to you, you might want to find a review forum which specializes in that type of reviewing. I've just pointed out a few that really stood out to me. You'll want to take a very close look at your story if you wish to correct your errors.


*Bullet* The first half of your story is told only from Nick's point-of-view, then suddenly you shift to his daughter's later in the story. If you wish to have a 3rd omniscient narrator, I'd suggest you do that from the start - from the beginning, show Nick's and his daughter's sides of the story.

*Bullet* With almost every line of dialogue, you use the word "said" ("Nick said," "she said," etc.). You might want to use another word for some of those. It gets a little too repetitive, I think.



My Rating


2.0 - A good story, but there really are a great deal of mistakes and errors here. Those are easily learned with practice. I had a professor that used to say there are two kinds of writers: Those with good ideas and poor writing, and those with good writing and poor ideas. To me, good writing can be learned; it's the ideas that are difficult to come by. I think you've got a great idea for a story here, and with a little work, your writing will shine, too.

Thanks for sharing and good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

120
120
Review of Fraidy Grady  
Review by spidey
Rated: ASR | (3.0)
Hi ragefire2000

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


Great theme! I think a lot of people can relate to this story, to Grady and to his experience. I love the end, the triumphant leap, and Grady's return to his family. I imagined him as a hero of sorts. Nicely done!


Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.


“Fraidy Grady”.
I believe the period belongs inside the quotation mark.

*Bullet* A few questions - Why was the lake full of salt water? I don't think that's typical of lakes. Also, if the water was shallow, would Grady fall completely under the water's surace when he jumped in? I think it's possible, but I just wasn't sure how shallow the water was.

*Bullet* In general, I think there could be a lot more detail in the story. There is a word count limit for the contest, but you had plenty of room to develop your plot and characters a good deal more. Perhaps you could start the story earlier, with the scene with his siblings. Describe everything in enough detail so the reader can experience the scene with Grady. Just my thoughts. *Smile*



My Rating


3.0 - A good story, but I think it could use a little more detail to really pull the reader into the story. Thanks for sharing and good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

121
121
Review of The Key  
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi NickiD89

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


Great story! This has all the elements of a successful story, and I found it touching and emotional. I like that Samantha's original assumptions about her birth-mother turn out to be wrong, and I thought the end was particularly touching.

Excellent writing! This is polished, detailed and well-written, which made it quite enjoyable to read. I could clearly picture the story, especially the setting. Nicely done!



Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.


*Bullet* I try to come up with at least one suggestion when I review, and I had a difficult time with this one. *Smile* The only thing I could see strengthened is Samantha's character. How old is she? I couldn't quite tell from the story. Also, she seemed a little too average to me. I wanted something that showed her as a unique person, something to really connect me to her as a character. Perhaps even some quirk or hobby, something that makes her stand out a bit more. Just a suggestion. *Smile*



My Rating


4.5 - An excellent story! Thanks for sharing and good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

122
122
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (2.0)
Hi lynjs

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


I love the idea of this story - a second chance at life to put right the path that led astray. Cool theme! What I liked in particular was your unique take on a classic idea. It's like It's a Wonderful Life in a new light.

I liked Victor! He was a nice contrast to the usual St. Peter we tend to read about at the Pearly Gates.


Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.


*Bullet* First, I have to suggest you add extra spaces between your paragraphs. For your readers who are viewing on a computer screen, it's much easier on their eyes. *Wink*

However, there no regrets.
missing word *Right* there were no regrets

this pier with the bellowing grey-blue clouds
I think bellowing should be *Right* billowing
(bellow means to make a deep, hollow sound or to shout in a deep voice; billow means a rolling mass or a great wave)

and man at a desk, Victor.I think a word is missing, perhaps *Right* and a man at a desk

Not my lie, so don’t look at me.
The word "my" here threw me off. It makes it seem as if the name Victor is a lie, just not the narrator's lie.

I told Lee with his lack luster want of me to leave.
lack luster *Right* lackluster

He was painting the sea and it’s wonders.
it's *Right* its
(it's is a contraction of "it is" while its shows possession)

*Bullet* Have you heard the writing advice, "Show, don't tell"? To me, your writing in this story shows the reader information, instead of showing it. In the first half of the story, you tell the reader about the main character's life, how she let everyone make decisions for her. Instead of telling this to the reader, why not try showing it, perhaps in a flashback or start the story with an interaction between her and another family member, before the car accident. Another example:

During a trip to the Atlantic Coast, I met Jerry. He was painting the sea and it’s wonders. He often painted in the off season. He felt that the sea and the beach took on a different look with the change in seasons. He wanted to capture that look.

This is the scene where she meets her second husband. Why not write it as a scene, describing the details of their meeting? What did he look like to her, what did they say to one another, etc. If you describe these scenes in more detail, it can bring the reader closer to the story, creating an emotional connection for the reader to the story. Just my thoughts. *Smile*

*Bullet* So at the end of the story, she and Victor become angels? I didn't really get why Victor became an angel. Was it because he influenced her to make the right decisions? It wasn't clear to me.


My Rating


2.0 - Good base for a great story. You've got a great theme here, an original twist on a common idea. For me, the story could use some work and more detail to draw the reader in. I enjoyed reading this.

Thanks for sharing and good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

123
123
Review of The Lake  
Review by spidey
Rated: E | (2.5)
Hi Emily Feliciano

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


A very touching story with a bit of a spiritual/fantasy twist. I like the story this tells, of a girl coming to terms with the death of her father, of her reuniting with her mother. I enjoyed the connection you made at the end, where the mother and daughter went through similar experiences (though very different at the same time) to deal with their loss. I think that enhanced the connection between them. Good choice!



Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.


Before I could ponder it's mystery anymore,
it's *Right* its


your great-great-great-grandfather built this lake.
How does one person build a lake? I understand that there are man-made lakes, but did this man oversee its construction? I was unclear on this. (Upon further reading, I see that this is explained, at least partly. I think it might be a good thing to show that the main character wonders this, though, so it doesn't appear to be an oversight by the writer.) Just my thoughts. *Smile*


Grabbing the ores,
ores *Right* oars

never again be able to enter the spirit world again.
Using the word "again" twice here isn't necessary. You might want to only use it once.

as I found my fathers.
fathers *Right* father's


*Bullet* I suggest adding spaces between your paragraphs. For those of us reading on a computer screen, it's much easier on our eyes. *Wink*

*Bullet* Also, you should start a new paragraph when starting new dialogue. Just a simple formatting issue.


*Bullet* You do a lot of "telling" rather than "showing" in your story. While it's not necessarily incorrect to do so, it does distance the reader from the action of the story. For instance, your first paragraph tells the reader that the main character's father died and she doesn't speak. I think this could also be shown by a scene where she interacts with another character, perhaps her mother? Her mother could speak to her daughter about their upcoming trip, about the girl's silence (when she obviously wouldn't respond to her mother's words), and even her husband's death.



My Rating


2.5 - A good story, though I do think a little revision could strengthen this story. You've got a great message here, and I enjoyed reading this very much.

Thanks for sharing your work and good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

124
124
Review of Deadly Dreams  
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (1.5)
Hi Dorianne

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


A clever mystery. I like the kitten in the story. For a woman who feels all alone, it would be a great help to her (and give her strength) to identify the danger in her life. Good choice!


Unfortunately, your entry was edited after the deadline. According to the contest rules, that disqualifies you from receiving a prize.



Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.



Here is a chair that I think is comfortable.” said Dr. Paula Mansfield
Change the period here to a comma. This same grammatical error is repeated throughout your story. You might want to take a closer look at your dialogue and fix these accordingly.

Lucy remember that after they married,
remember *Right* remembered

“I taped you conversation with Dr. Mansfield last week.
you *Right* your


*Bullet* Your dialogue seems a tad formal. It's not a good idea to write exactly the way people speak, but being too formal can stand out, too. It can take the reader out of the story a bit. You might want to consider revising. Reading it out loud can help you to hear the writing and make a decision on the tone. Just my thoughts. *Smile*

*Bullet* There are several places where you "tell" the reader information, instead of "showing" it to them. While it's not incorrect to write in this manner, it does tend to distance the reader from the story, and it makes the tone even more formal. For instance, one of your sentences:

turned to see a little black stray kitten that had been dumped, run across the path.

How did she know the kitten was a stray, one that was dumped? You could describe the kitten to the reader so they can draw this information for themselves.

*Bullet* I couldn't help feeling a bit confused by the end... The reader follows Lucy's perspective during the whole story, and then it shifts suddenly to her husband's. This is a bit disorienting. I also found the end a tad unbelievable. I think you might want to build up Lucy's suspicions a little more... Have her question her husband and have him reassure her. Something like that, perhaps. It was difficult for me to believe that he couldn't tell the difference between a human and a mannequin at the end. And how did Lucy tape the conversation? Why did Justin want to kill his wife? What did her dreams have to do with the story? How was the husband involved with the psychiatrist?



My Rating


1.5 - A good base for a great mystery, but in the end, I was left with a number of questions. I think with a little work, this could be a great, suspenseful mystery. Actually, I think it could make a great novel! Keep writing!

Thanks for sharing your work. *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

125
125
Review by spidey
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Hi Mara ♣ McBain

I am reviewing your story as a judge for "Short Shots: Official WDC Contest. Thanks for entering!

Please remember that you should NOT edit your entry until judging is over and the winners have been announced as per the contest rules.


Overall Thoughts


Excellent first paragraph! Your writing is so descriptive. It sets a great tone for the rest of the story.

This was almost painful to read - that's how well the grief comes across in your writing throughout this story. Very well done!

I also think that having the main character be a writer adds a particularly horrific aspect to the story, as many of your readers will be members of WDC, also writers. To think that this could happen to each of us (which feels more likely due to the chosen profession), makes the story more impactful on the reader, I think. Good choice!


Suggestions
These are just my thoughts. Feel free to use or disregard these as you see fit.


Your title:
In a Moments Breath ...
I believe "Moments" should be *Right* Moment's

In your intro:
gut wrenching
My dictionary says it should be hyphenated: gut-wrenching


*Bullet* I try my best to come up with at least one suggestion for everything I read. I had a difficult time coming up with one for this story, but here it is - This story feels a tad incomplete, which I think was your intention. Somehow, though, it just felt to me like it should be just a little bit more. I'm not sure what exactly you could add . . . but it felt like this was just the beginning of a larger story.


*Bullet* One question I had: Who called for help? The main character is interrupted while performing CPR by medical professionals, but I wondered who alerted them when she said she was all alone.


My Rating


4.5 - An excellent story! Thanks for sharing and good luck! *Smile*


Sincerely,
spidey

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