Hi there, Psyman . As you requested, I am here to review your story "Anomalies" . This review will also be submitted to the "24 Karat Gold Reviewing Competition" .
For me, reviewing is as much of a learning tool as it is a teaching tool. By reading and helping you, I am helping myself to become a better writer. After reading this, if you have any questions, feel free to contact me and I will answer them to the best of my ability.
That first introductory paragraph has a robotic feel. It almost seems like the character is viewing their body's reactions as if it is not their own. Personally, I found this intriguing. It made me wonder if the body was their host or if they were a robot. So, this worked great as a hook.
Although, I have a little advice here. You begin with present tense in the first sentence, but then switch to past tense. I'd suggest staying within the same tense to avoid confusion.
This story only consists of inner thought dialogue, which in my opinion is executed very well. The thoughts coincide with the actions of the character. For example, when the hand escapes gravity and she laces her fingers together, she thinks about how it seems to be the normal thing to do. It is almost like those thoughts are contemplating or remembering what is normal.
I feel that adding Angela's words indented, rather than in italics was a great choice here. It prevented confusion. It is clear that it is presented like a video in the character's head, rather than just thought patterns.
Typically it would be odd to not divulge the main character's name, but in this story, it makes a lot of sense because they themselves are trying to understand who and what they are. As they go on a journey of mental discovery, so is the reader. Through vivid descriptions, I felt as if I was them, learning about myself.
There is a lot of imagery here that make these characters interesting and feel real. The main character seems almost robotic as if they are grasping at memories that were implanted by another. Little details like it feeling strange about moving body parts as if they were new, yet they sense something familiar about them, peak curiosity as their identity unravels throughout the story.
Descriptions of Angela are shown through bits of memory, played like a video in the character's mind. Her physical traits are well defined, as well as her way of dressing. Understanding that she is a scientist, the descriptions of her in a pant dress suit are realistic to someone in a professional field.
I love the way you describe these anomalies. Through your descriptions, I could see them almost in a horrific way. Showing the world, where these anomalies where occurring, through the eyes of Angela worked well. It created a distinction between the current place the character was in and where Angela was. She appeared to be watching the destruction of the world as she knew it through a spaceship.
When it comes to the main character's location, details like gravity explain that it is an earth-like planet. Although, there isn't much detail about the planet. Some ways that details could be added is possibly the description of plant life mingled into the actions of the story. We don't know whether it is night or day, so maybe they open their eyes to two moons, or the sun blaring in their eyes.
The plot was excellent! I was glued to it from beginning to end. There are hints throughout, like the explanations of the planet being in uprise over these anomalies, Angela's location, and the story being divulged in a series of memories, that hint at the ending, but don't divulge it completely. Being surprised was refreshing.
In my opinion, rarely does a cliffhanger work in a story. It takes great skill to do so without the story appearing unfinished. Yet, in this case, you did an excellent job. Still, I would love to read a part two to know what happens in this new world. Better yet, this could be an intro to a novel. There are so many places you could take this.
appendage that seamed familiar but altogether new- Seam is used in sewing, but the word seem denotes familiarity. So, "seem" would make more sense in this sentence.
Form fitted- This is a compound word, hence it should be "form-fitted"
New found appendages to manipulate!- Newfound is the correct way to write the compound word.
With some effort(,) the legs started to flex- "With some effort" is an introductory phrase, which means that a comma needs to come after it.
After several times through the speech(,) the message was finally-
"After several times through the speech" is an introductory phrase, hence there needs to be a comma after it.
There was rolling grey rock hills- The word here should be "were" because there is more than one hill. "Was" is used when there is a singular item.
and for the rest of the process(,) it is perfectly affixed- Comma is needed after the introductory phrase,
Of course (,) these questions have brought on a lot of interest- This is another missing comma after an introductory phrase.
Corporations, religious groups(,)and various other organizations- When there are three or more elements or phrases listed in a sentence, there needs to be a comma separating them all, including before "and".
The last worry(,)of course(,) has not been taken seriously- The placement of the phrase "of course" makes it an interrupter, which means there needs to be a comma before it and after it.
In order to make it through the transition(,) the travelor would have- Missing a comma after the introductory phrase.
In order to make it through the transition(,)the traveler would have to be in complete stasis- Another missing comma after an introductory phrase
The opportunity to be the first one on another planet(,) however (,) was a very powerful lure.- "however" is an interruption, hence there needs to be a comma before and after.
also showed the form fitted head rest- This is a compound word, so it should be "headrest".
but with luck(,) I will be able to remember- "but with luck" is an introductory phrase, which means that a comma is needed after.
It appears that your biggest issue in this area is understanding the use of commas when it concerns introductory phrases or interrupters. Below are a few links that might help you with this.
The reasoning for the three and a half stars is mostly due to the constant grammar issues found. The story itself is excellent. I'm hoping that you get around to editing this. If you do, make sure to let me know. In respect of fellow writers, I am always happy to reevaluate my rating when a writer e-mails me, letting me know that an item has been repaired.
Thank you for sharing your writing and choosing me to review it. It has been a pleasure taking a tour through your imagination.