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Printed from http://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/vcoffin
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240 Public Reviews Given
Public Reviews
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Review of Forgotten beauty  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (5.0)
Absolutely beautiful. An image of Nature's grace in a nutshell. I do hope you can bring more things like this to the page.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Zet's Tale  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
I like the way you created dialogue that has a "sound" to it. I've always struggled with that, with very few exceptions. I do wonder what slog is, though. You use it rather extensively, with apparently varied meanings. Is that intentional? I like the way you describe things, and can't wait to see more. I look forward to the expansion of the tale.
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Review of The Question  
Review by Vincent Coffin
Rated: E | (3.5)
I applaud your attempt at taking on a concept foreign to you. Sometimes the concept can overtake a writer with images and ideas from other media, such as books, movies, and television. You seemed to handle that pretty well. I can only think of a couple of things that you might want to look at and change. The first is easy to fix. There are a couple of places where you changed your perspective from first person to third person. A re-read usually catches that. Sometimes, you create compound sentences that cause what I call an echo. It's where you could have shortened the sentence and had it make much more sense. An example of this is where you talked about military instinct, early on in the story. It might have read better if you'd simply said: "My military instincts told me I was vulnerable." This sense of being in the open makes you a target is one a combat veteran never really overcomes. You might also think twice about discussing panic in that moment right after. Veterans with the kind of experience you describe rarely panic. They get the sense of dread, perhaps, but they control panic automatically...it's a defense mechanism that becomes a learned response. You see, I do have experience with this subject matter. While I respect your viewpoint about those who succumb being cowards, I don't agree with it. Civilians rarely have the means to resist an occupying force, let alone defeat it. Survival becomes the prime consideration. I have seen brave people in the world, and they don't all carry guns.

A hint about editing. I always read something twice before I post it. Then, after it's been there for two or three weeks, I go back and edit it again. I find it's easier to edit by reading it aloud, to see if it makes sense as a spoken narrative. I like this piece, though, and hope you'll do more...but try to edit this one some. You'll be able to see my points when you read it aloud...good luck.
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Review of The glow within  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
I like the simplicity of this story. Instead of going somewhere dark, you went to a safe and pleasant place, which is often something that people just won't do. I'm glad you did. Something like this would work well in a series of stories for younger people, to take away some of the fearful images we all so often reveal in our writing. Well done.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Vincent Coffin
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
VERY GOOD I loved the premise, and the way it was carried out. I think this is an excellent start for something larger that might encompass how the other girls react to her now...how her realization of her changes strikes her internally, etc. Does she now embrace her intended victim? Does she not realize the changes that have been wrought on her? Each and every change could have its own ramifications in her life, and the lives of those around her. Does she seek revenge on Yakov? Or on the girls who might have obviously sent her in there to her own fate?
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Review of Forever  
Review by Vincent Coffin
Rated: E | (5.0)
An excellent example of capturing a point in time in a manner that anyone can relate to. I enjoy the fact that you didn't belabor this with involved descriptions of scene and surroundings...that would only take away from the emotions involved. I very much like this piece.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
When read out loud, it almost sounds like a riddle. The rhythm is very smooth and easy, but seems just a bit stilted in the second verse. I'm not sure what suggestion I would make for that, but the first and third verses are great. The piece seems to speak to the druidic nature of most people. I would suggest reworking the second verse to bring the rhythm more in line with the first and third.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of At The Mall  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: ASR | (4.0)
I appreciate light verse whenever I run across it. The meter was a bit off in places, but all in all it was quite delightful. I want to encourage you to do more light verse. So much poetry is dark and depressing, which makes reading it king of a slog... but this piece is a good example of an emotion we can all relate to, and a situation that fills out the chances we all take in life. It is very enjoyable.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Let's  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 18+ | (5.0)
All I can say is: "BRILLIANT!" I am absolutely blown away by the playful nature of this poem! The mix is wonderful, entertaining, and vivid in its descriptives. I know this piece is old, but it has encouraged me to look at the rest of the portfolio right away. Thank you so much for this poem.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
This is really good. In the first three or four paragraphs I had a hard time separating the characters from one another. At some point you might try to do a little descriptive that shows where they are standing, or how they appear. Once I was able to sort out who was who, it flowed right along. With a little "tweaking" this could be a really great piece. The imagery you put in place was very good, and I truly enjoyed it once I got it lined out. I think that we often equate a demon with the male gender, and when the demon turned out to be female, it caused a little stutter in the mind's eye...(Towering over them the massive demon lord watched the carnage waiting for her due.) It causes a separation between the massive demon lord and whose due was being awaited. (< Did that make ANY sense?lol...)

You might try: "Towering over them, her wings quivering ever so slightly in anticipation, the massive demon lord awaited her due." That would maintain her integrity as a character. I suppose the term "lord" has a lot to due with it, but I can't for the life of me think of a way to honor her gender with a similar title (I don't have my thesaurus with me...lol. But, still an excellent piece.


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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Very well written, good theme, easily followed. Only problem I found was when Elektra said "...he subtley polks..." etc. Subtly is the correct spelling, and it should have been "pokes" instead of "polks."

Enough nitpicking, though. I really like this piece, and it is a short, sensible piece that brings a lot of reflection to the reader, as well as the characters. I like it. I only brought up the spelling items because it's one of my pet peeves...lol...that's why I always edit so much before I post...and even then I have errors in my writings.

Develop this girl into something great...she deserves it. (Note how often I use ellipses...rofl.)

All in all, very good.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
A very nice piece. It shows a viewpoint that many of the older members of our species tend to forget when they have started to reach their goals. I like the fact that you didn't try to contrive a rhyme pattern. I look forward to reading more of your work as you develop. Your concise style is refreshing.

Always remember the words of Shakespeare: "Brevity is the soul of wit."

The only suggestion I would make is...

Stick to black for your font color...lol


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Dreamcatcher  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 18+ | (5.0)
Fantastic! Short, to the point, very concise. It contains just the right amount of tension and concludes in a well-said solid ending.

I really enjoyed this. It could be used as the bones of a screenplay for an episode of "Twilight Zone" or "Night Gallery" very easily.

I can see that I need to take a look at your portfolio. Again, very good!


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 18+ | (3.0)
You did get the picture painted, and I agree the ending was probably better than anything you might have been planning when you started. Here are some tips, from an editing viewpoint.

You use his proper name too often. Once you've introduced him, you may only need to mention his name again if you introduce another character, and they interact.

In the first paragraph, I had to re-read it a few times to work out the maneuvering of the two cars. One of the things I have learned to do is keep a thesaurus handy, so that I don't repeat the same word or phrase consecutively, or too often in a piece.

Lastly, there is a point at which details can be skipped or shortened, to help maintain the reader's interest.

The general theme was good, and I was able to pull the picture out of the descriptions with a little perseverance. This would actually be a good start to a longer story, where you might think of why Jasper slid out of the chair in front of the other guard. The difference in their gender suggests that he would like to make her laugh, to start a new level of a relationship with her.

Oh...the reference to the "solid wall of water" early in the piece is awkward. It doesn't suggest a rainstorm so much as it describes the wave of a flood.

I'd really like to see an edit of this piece, and see if you could expand it.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Very poignant, indeed. The question begs an answer, and you have presented not only the definitive, but also the speculative side of those answers. I was thrown a little about the use of a hawk soaring on warm thermals, though. Not sure why, but I might have chosen a different bird...a gull, or albatross perhaps. But that's just me. A predatory bird just jangled me a bit. Or was it meant to?...Hmmmmm....

All in all, I like this piece and hope to read more of your work as I can make the time.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of Mum's The Word  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
Artfully done. I like the flow of this item, and the direction it goes. The point of view in this is also interesting, as it allows a different approach to the tale. I found it very refreshing, and I would like to see more of this vein of thought.


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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 18+ | (5.0)
Absolutely hilarious! You kept everything together, and it flowed so well. I'm going to have everyone I know hear about this. I like the format, and I think the idea is great. The dialogue never lost the feel of the character, and it kept tight with the Q & A format. I do hope you'll consider working on other narratives like this one for the other holidays.


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Review of Old Story Told  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (3.5)
I can identify with the subject matter very well. I am guessing the repetition of phrases in the poem are to bring to light the frustration of hearing the same old stories from the same people, and it does provide that feeling for sure.

I would cut out a few of the repetitions, and try to find a couple of phrases that might flow well. I always keep a thesaurus at hand to help me with things like this, because I'm not the most poetic person by a long shot.

On the subject matter, I learned some years ago to turn a deaf ear to that crap. When it got tossed around over and over in a few minutes, I would just say, "If you're still hanging on to that, then I obviously haven't pissed you off lately...what a shame." Then I walk away laughing. The other skill I learned in dealing with critics is this...we all have that one person who calls and wants to engage us on things like this over the phone. With me, it was my mother. I finally learned a creative way to hang up on someone. I start to say something, then disconnect the call halfway through my sentence. When they call right back, I just say, "You know, I don't carry on conversations with people who hang up on me" and I hang up again.

Let's face it, once we learn that people are going to think and feel about us however they want to, we learn not to be bothered by their criticism. I know how difficult it is to have a conversation turn around suddenly to a discussion about all my faults and past transgressions. When I learned to just smile and walk away, it all got better. Of course, it's a little bit of a pain when you've travelled a thousand miles to go home for a holiday, but there's actually quite a bit of satisfaction in getting up from the table and walking out to the car and getting back on the road back home, leaving one's critics sitting there with their faces hanging out. It eventually makes them think twice about bringing up the ghosts of the past.

I like the piece, I'd just like to see it polished up with a few phrases to cut the repetitive items. Bravo on dealing with it all...it gets easier the more you learn to accept yourself and laugh at it all.


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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (4.0)
A work in progress, no doubt. I like the imagery that this piece conjures in the mind's eye. Your descriptions are very good. Proofreading and a little structural change will make it easier to read. I actually only have one problem...I don't like this girl's name. Blaithin is surely a good servicible name, but hard to wrap my head around for a main character. I actually think the servant's name, or some form of it, might be better suited to the main character. Blaithin just doesn't roll with the imagined girl. The very last line is also a little troublesome for me. I would suggest her mind picture this place in a short descriptive, and her reply be shortened to something simple like, "I wish her Godspeed on her way home to that magical land." It denotes a shared secret between the two women that could be built on in the future of the work. I do wonder what Blaithin's take on being renamed is, as well.

I do like this, and hope it's the foundation for something much larger. Carry on.


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Review of Deacon Ryce  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
I like this very much as an introduction. It could very easily be expanded. Your description of Elam aids very much in its visualization. I find that very interesting, as most readers would much rather be able to create their own "scenery" than be limited to trying to visualize the writer's own vision exclusively. I very much like it, and hope to see more soon.


*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | N/A (Review only item.)
Grammatically, good. But content might need to be more reflective of what you are seeking from furthering your education. Often, decision makers on a scholarship committee are looking to see if you have a goal. For instance, discussing your love of English literature is good, but what is your goal? Do you want to teach, do you want to become an author or a publisher? What is the eventual goal of your education, and how do you feel this scholarship would help you meet that goal?

Good Luck with your quest, and I hope this might help you get there.


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Review by Vincent Coffin
Rated: E | (4.0)
I like the organization and the simple manner of presentation. In mentioning the Big Rip, the idea of things being ripped apart needs mention of being a result of the increasing velocity acting against inertia to help the reader understand what forces are involved in such devastation. All in all, it is a good basic start for a broader discussion. I like it.


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Review of Busted  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: E | (3.5)
I love it! A moment of improbability and wonder caught in six sentences that capture the imagination. I do believe this is a very good hook, and could be used to expand into a very good story.


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Review of Rude Awakening  
Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.5)
I read your first piece, and then decided to check your portfolio. I think your writing is very well done, with no glaring grammatical errors. Your outlook is very well expressed, and your descriptive skills are polished. I like the rhythm of your writing, and see that you have a very good grasp of what image you want to transmit to the reader. I would suggest you be mindful of the rating system, though. The final paragraph doesn't lend itself well to readers under 18 years old. All in all, I very much like your writing, and will be watching for more in the future. Thank you for some refreshing reading.


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Review by Vincent Coffin
In affiliation with The Steampunk Authors' Gui...  
Rated: 13+ | (4.0)
Very descriptive, and very well written. Your descriptions are well thought out, and the images you bring up are vivid and interesting. I also like the last paragraph, and the outcome of the situation. The simple acceptance of a situation that could have been worse is apparent, and gives a sort of interesting twist to the previous paragraphs. I also appreciate the cheese to the mouse. A very nice touch. I hope to read more of your work.


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