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Printed from http://www.writing.com/main/profile/reviews/wstafford
Review Requests: ON
23 Public Reviews Given
Public Reviews
1
1
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Hi K5Rakitan ,
I just finished reading "Kaiba's Prostitute - Part 7, and would like to share my thoughts. Per your request I have read these chapters and am offering my review. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
Very well done. As I have come to expect with this work, the imagery and scenes are fluid and descriptive to just the right amount. I am also, always, impressed with the dialog and how you are able to use the "show don't tell" to move the story along.

*Check2* Conflict:
In this section, I admit I was a bit worried. Things seemed to be going pretty well for Joan and all the other characters involved. Yet, the reference back to the hacker and the fight that ensued was genius. As expected, just when all is going well...conflict arises. The fight is well described. Even without being a fan of the fiction, it was described in such a way that I didn't have to be familiar with the games. Well done on this part especially.

*Check2* Flow:
I am always impressed with the ability you have in this area.

*Check2* Suggestions:
On the first page, second paragraph, last sentence, the word circumference is used twice in the sentence. If there's a better way, I would replace the first instance with edge, or something else to preserve the second instance. Otherwise, this was great! Thanks for letting me read it!

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
2
2
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Hi K5Rakitan ,
I just finished reading "Kaiba's Prostitute - Part 6, and would like to share my thoughts. At your request, I have read and am offering my review below. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
Having read many previous chapters, I am pleased as the story progresses. The style, dialogue, and character personalities are very consistent, which is not always easy for longer works.

*Check2* Theme:
This is about two wealthy brothers and the woman they hire as a call girl, but fall in love. Fanfiction.

*Check2* Setting:
This portion takes place in three main places. The hotel, limo, and on a hike in nature. I really liked the descriptions of the trail as they went along on the hike. Also, having the phone batteries draining as they're taking photos really rings true.

One part I felt was out of place. They have what would appear to be the most luxurious room in the hotel. The cheap hotel coffee and bad condiments is out of place in this type of room. Regular rooms get the regular stuff, but I don't see the Kaiba's getting a cheap room. So, with that comes with gourmet coffee options or coffee service (sent up in silver).

*Check2* Conflict:
This set of chapters was pretty light on conflict. I did see the two areas where Michael was not sure about the relationship offer at first. Also, the end where the hacker refused to hack Facebook for them was interesting. This threw me in a good way. I hope to see both of these conflicts in coming chapters.

With Roland (the bodyguard) having concerns about relationship status on the social media platforms, it seems like the reader is getting set to run into some issues.

*Check2* Characters:
As this is moving forward, I'm enjoying getting to know the characters more. Little tidbits flow in regularly that enhance the roundness of their lives.

*Check2* Dialogue:
As always, this is excellent.

*Check2* Grammar and Mechanics:
No changes or issues here.

*Check2* Suggestions:
The only suggestion is to rethink the coffee service for their hotel room. Otherwise, well done!!!

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
3
3
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (5.0)
Hi K5Rakitan ,
I just finished reading "Kaiba's Prostitute - Part 5, and would like to share my thoughts. Thanks for asking me to read and review it. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
Again, wow. This one was steamy and had some interesting conflicts between the brothers' relationships with each other and with Joan. Having the mother in a scene, and that she is pious, really gave it a bit of a twist regarding Joan's life and personality.
*Check2* Theme:
This story is fan fiction having to do with falling in love with a prostitute.

*Check2* Setting:
I enjoyed the scene switching to the diner. This is where Michael is working and we meet Joan's mother. The diner and Michael being a "wage earner" was a really great way to introduce another bit of Joan's life to the reader. Here we see her from a different light because living the high life with her "johns" is in great contrast to the love she has for a simple guy, working a simple job. Great contrast here.

*Check2* Conflict:
The biggest conflict here seems to be near the end where both brothers, who have hired her, come to find that they have very strong feelings for her, and she reciprocates. This has been something building throughout the story and was well executed. I felt like the last couple of pages rushed into making the relationship real, but it is not far off reality. Once the subject of love is there, people often rush into wedding dresses and rainbows.

*Check2* Characters:
Joan's mother was the most interesting. Having met all of the others (with exception of Michael on this scale), I really enjoyed seeing her mother preach at her and pray for her soul right there in front of the very guys she was charging for sex. Interesting introduction.

*Check2* Dialogue:
Well executed. The story flows well. More use of ... this time than other times, but not too much. Good job here.

*Check2* Flow:
This goes along with the dialog. I didn't feel that it slowed down or entered a pace that made it sleepy or too overwhelming.

*Check2* Grammar and Mechanics:
One dialogue is missing an end quote. I mention this because it is otherwise perfect and thought I should rib you a little!

*Check2* Suggestions:
No major suggestions. I would re-read the last chapter to see if the pace quickens beyond expectation. There might be a way to add some more suspense in that part. Great job!!

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
4
4
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (5.0)
Hi K5Rakitan ,
I just finished reading "Kaiba's Prostitute - Part 4, and would like to share my thoughts. You requested that I read and review your current chapters. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
I am blown away by this. The story progresses and the intensity of the relationships grows exponentially. I enjoyed the dynamic presented between the characters as their lives begin to intermingle. Joan has emerged as the character at the center of all of the attention and though her life gets complicated, I thought your writing kept things from getting overly complicated, and this made it easy to keep up with who is who and what is going on between them all.

*Check2* Plot:
This part has been growing all along. As the life of Joan (and her profession) has gone public, I thought things would take a severe negative turn. However, instead of being ridiculed, it seems everyone wants to join in. After the last few chapters, I expected the difficulty for Joan to be from public pressure. I like how you kept that positive and allowed the relationship development and the ensuing complications to be a major plot point.

I was a bit concerned that the section where you described the characters for the game play would drag a bit. At first, being a non-gamer, it seemed a bit slow. However, when I started reading about the game play, it became evident as to why the descriptions were needed. I am not convinced the description is needed because the game play grabs attention on its own.

*Check2* Style and Voice:
As always, I really enjoy your writing. I have no suggestions in this area. The way you handle the dialog is especially riveting.

*Check2* Suggestions:
I have no suggestions for any improvement. I honestly think this story and the way you have written it is ready for publishing. I look forward to reading more!

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
5
5
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
REMOVE THIS NOTICE: Personalize the opening each time.

Hi K5Rakitan ,
I just finished reading "Kaiba's Prostitute - Part 3, and would like to share my thoughts. This review is in response to your request. I very much enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. I'm also enjoying being able to read the whole story as you have shared thus far. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
As with your other chapters, I am again thoroughly impressed. With this set of chapters and the previous I've read, you are able to create scenes, emotions, and introduce characters with class and grace. Each character keeps his/her own personality throughout, an this is extremely important in a novel. Well done!

*Check2* Setting:
As you know, this setting takes place in the hotel after pushing through the rushing reporters. I felt this was well done because there was a potential issue with the two brothers, the heightened emotions, and everything that was going on and this was on display.

*Check2* Conflict:
The tension between the two brothers was interesting given that they both had hired Joan. Knowing this and the fact that they were in Seto's hotel room, I wasn't sure how this would play out. The scene in the banquet hall was also exptected to be tense.

*Check2* Characters:
One thing I noticed and really liked was how you introduce a character. I'll have to go back and read the previous chapters because I just noticed this. Before you introduced the reporter, she was the only person that received a quick description of how she was dressed. You introduced her with the guards, but they were nondescript. Moments later, you introduced her as the reporter. I noticed this as a very subtle and great way to mentally prepare me to meet an integral player. Really impressed with this part.

*Check2* Dialogue:
This is also well done. I enjoy how the brothers converse about Joan. There's some underlying tension, but nothing quite avert. They also stay within character, with Seto being more aggressive and his brother timider. The first couple of paragraphs seemed a bit harder to get through. I re-read them a few times and do not have a suggestion on how to do them differently. I just found that reading through the section where Seto was trying to figure out Joan's last name was a bit more difficult to read through.


*Check2* Suggestions:
Other than the first couple of paragraphs as mentioned above, I have no suggestions. This is incredibly well written and I really enjoyed reading it.

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
6
6
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.0)
Hi K5Rakitan ,
I just finished reading "Kaiba's Prostitute - Part 2, and would like to share my thoughts. I found Part 2 of the Kaiba's Prostitute Novel through your review request. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
I have to say that I am impressed with both parts that you have shared with me to review. I really am getting into this story and enjoying the characters and how you frame the scenes and move the story forward. Even as someone who is less familiar with the history of these characters in previous works, I find that I'm getting to know them and their personalities well through your words.

*Check2* Setting:
This part (Part 2) is set mostly in three places. In the previous work and this one, you do an outstanding job of describing the setting without spending paragraphs to do so. Your way of intermingling the details with the dialogue and movement make it easy to build the picture in my mind without having a long boring paragraph of "here's what the hotel looks like." Instead, things like, "Joan stared up at a huge modern abstract chandelier as they passed through the lobby" gives everything I really need to know about the scene without overloading me with details.

*Check2* Plot:
This part was great. I was caught off guard at one point, but only because I didn't remember a plot point in a previous chapter. I found it curious that Joan was not available on a particular night for Seto. When I read that his brother was picking Joan up for the date I found it interesting but didn't click, until I suddenly remembered that they had made the arrangement in a previous chapter. I seriously loved how that snuck back up on me. Concluding with the scene with the two brothers in confrontation at the club just wrapped it up like a well made poboy sandwich from New Orleans. In fact, the fact that they went clubbing, but there was no mention that it was the same event that Seto (the older brother) would be attending gave me a sense of excitement as I began to see that there had to be a confrontation. Part of me wanted the couple to get out without running into the older brother and part of me knew that fate wouldn't allow that. It made the hair on my arms rise. Loved it!

*Check2* Conflict:
In the first part, the conflict seemed to be between Seto and Joan's boyfriend. In this one, it was an inevitable conflict between the two Kaiba brothers. Nice move!

*Check2* Climax:
The potential for the fight between the brothers being interrupted by the unruly businessmen and then the press back at the hotel really was a good way to delay the fight, but increase the intensity of the situation.

*Check2* Dialogue:
This part was quite a bit different from the previous part I reviewed. The dialogue here didn't have very many clues on who was speaking. It wasn't too difficult to know, but I did notice there was a difference. I think it is good to bring back some of the "he said/she said" into the dialogue to help the reader keep track. The first part was well done in this regard because of the tags. I would suggest bringing some of them back here. I don't think every line needs have "Joan said" and "Seto said" but I do think to have a few more mixed in would be helpful. Part of the issue is it seems the style changed a bit, which can be confusing throughout a book. Having that consistent style allows the reader to relax and know that they won't get lost because of the writers guiding hand.

*Check2* Flow:
Just as with the first part (which I'll link below) I really felt this was a great area that shines brightly. There is no part of the reading where I'm thinking that I just want to skip ahead. I want every detail here and enjoy reading each word. The way you move from a discussion about a party that is happening and then to the party (next chapter) without mundane details is great.

*Check2* Suggestions:
Adding in some dialogue tags will help the reader keep track of the speaker without effort. There was only one spot that confused me. When Mokuba arrives to pick up Joan, there is mention of Michael, then they say "Bye Michelle." This confused me a bit as to who was actually there. Other wise, I can't wait to read more!
Link to part one Kaiba's Prostitute - Part 1  for anyone who wants to read it as well.

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
7
7
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
Hi K5Rakitan ,
I just finished reading "Invalid Item, and would like to share my thoughts. I found your chapters through your review request. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

I want to apologize for not getting to this sooner. This last week has been packed with finals for some college classes I'm taking and time just got away from me.

*Check2* Overall Impression:
I'll start here by saying that I am unfamiliar with Seto Kaiba and Yu-Gi-Oh! and had to ask my husband for a quick education. However, I really enjoyed this and now I'm going to check to see if he has the originals for me to read. I'm very impressed with many aspects and have very little in the way of suggestions.

*Check2* Plot:
Reading the authors note, which I know will not be part of the story, I was expecting a full-on erotica type story. When I read Atlas Shrugged I was often distracted by frivolous sex scenes that didn't seem to fit in or progress the story. In your story I was amazed. Any scenes that may have bordered were very tasteful and necessary to progress the story. Well done. With the introductions, you made it clear without overburdening detail, that this was a story included polyamourous relationships. As Seto approached Joan and offered money for a night, the prostitution element was introduced.

One note that I want to make about the beginning: Though I really enjoyed the story and was drawn into it as I kept reading, the start didn't grab me. I'm not sure how I would change it though. This isn't an action/adventure story or one where a shocking event such as alien spacecraft landing comes into play. There's just something I can't put my finger on other than it seems to be a typical love story beginning at the train station where the two lovers' eyes meet and they embrace. As I said, I'm not sure HOW I would try to change it, but it's just a thought I had.


*Check2* Characters:
I was impressed that the descriptions of clothing and other parts of the characters were so well done. There was just enough detail to begin to form an idea, but not so much to distract or slow the story. Well done indeed. I think that this and the way you handled the dialogue impressed me the most. Just so you know, I'm taking notes for myself here on how to do this from your example. This is an area that I struggle greatly, so it's very refreshing to see this handled so well. Each piece of their personality, their relationships, their past, and their appearances were distributed in a way that helped make it a smooth growth of them without saying, "So, here's this guy wearing this and that and he's from here and there and did this and that." I've seen this type of writing before and felt it was cumbersome to get through. Keep building the characters the way you are, it works VERY well!


*Check2* Dialogue:
Ahh, now we get to my favorite part of your work. I really enjoyed reading the dialog. This is where I got to know the characters and what was going on. Here you told me through conversations a bit about each character. As I said in other sections, you spread it out. I felt as if I was learning about a newly met friend. Conversations have to happen over time and you did a great job with this.

I was especially impressed with the way you helped me keep track of who was talking. You used simple phrases such as Joan asked, Marc assured, Joan conceded, Marc called, said, etc. Simple, single words that gave me the right impression on how the dialogue was presented. "Marc called" showed me that he was sitting outside the dressing room (which I can imagine) and called out to Joan who was behind the door getting dressed. He didn't yell which would be out of scene and character, but did the elevated "call" which so many do in that situation.


*Check2* Flow:

I have to say, I really enjoyed how well the story flowed both within and between chapters. Each scene was set and changing from one to the next was not a distraction at all. There were not giant leaps at all.

A great example is going from the train station to the office: "..escorted her through the town as she worried about office etiquette. ...They entered a recessed door at the base of a three-story Victorian building.."

This worked so well. There was no need to call a taxi, drive the car, find a parking spot. They moved. The story moved. The next scene was the office building with a clear but good description that was not too loaded with details.

*Check2* Setting:
See "Flow" section starting with "This worked so well." Really good job at describing places over time. Each scene gave a little more information and as an artist would take his/her time, painted the scenes one piece at a time. I like that learning how a character looks (Marc being cleanly shaven is known in chapter 4 I believe.

*Check2* Grammar and Mechanics:
Nothing to suggest here. I thought it was well done.

*Check2* Suggestions:
As I've said throughout, I was very impressed and really enjoyed reading this. I admit that I came into it a bit skeptical and felt I was entering unfamiliar territory since I'm not familiar with the Yu-Gi-Oh stories. But in the end, I felt that I didn't need to be.

My only suggestion is to rethink the beginning scene. The train station works. The meeting of the lovers works. I just feel like it's too typical and a bit cliche. And, I really have no suggestion on how to improve it, so take this suggestion with a grain of salt as I'm not sure I'm being very helpful here.

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
8
8
Review of What is Hope  
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi AJW ,
I just finished reading "What is Hope, and would like to share my thoughts. I found your poem on [insert where you found the poem by searching the "Browse by Type" section. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work and I am in no way an expert, but just a fellow reader sharing my impressions. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing! As an additional note: I am really new at both reading and reviewing poetry. Any feedback on my feedback is also greatly appreciated!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
I felt this was uplifting for me. I am not one that "hopes" a lot, so reading this a few times entered my mind and gave me pause as to whether or not I should give hope a chance. I've always been more logical and see-it-to-believe-it in personality. I appreciate especially the line "Hope is an odd thing" because that's exactly how I feel. I know it exists. I know it has its uses. But I don't grasp it entirely.

*Check2* Title:
I liked the title. In fact, being one that operates more on practical experience rather than hope, the title is what drew me into this poem initially.

*Check2* Imagery:
This is an area that I felt really shined. Lines like "big like a glacier" and "arm's length" and "goes down swinging" put images directly in my head. This evoked previous experiences I've had hiking across a glacier, setting the line in marching band (always at arm's length) and watching or playing baseball games. Very good imagery in my opinion.

*Check2* Rhyming & Repetition:
I also felt this was done well. After the first stanza, I went back and started over as I saw the rhyming going on with the consonance.

*Check2* Structure & Form:
Being a newbie, I have little experience in this area. I would only say that this was easy to read by the way it was presented. The lines and separation with the rhyming and rhythm made for an enjoyable experience.

*Check2* Theme:
You stuck with it perfectly. Hope was the title and the theme of the poem. Well done.

*Check2* Suggestions:
I have no suggestion other than to keep writing. I really enjoyed this. It made me feel good as I read it each time! Thanks very much!

Thank you for sharing your poem. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
9
9
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.5)
Hi Tim Chiu ,
I just finished reading "The Tide Seems Strengthened, and would like to share my thoughts. I found your poem through the search by type. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work and I am in no way an expert, but just a fellow reader sharing my impressions. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing! As an additional note: I am new to poetry, something I have always found mysterious but beautiful. Please bear with me as I work through my thoughts and share them with you. I admit to being fully inadequate to critique but want to learn.

*Check2* Overall Impression:
My first impression was evoked by comparing the title to the poem itself. This left me with a feeling of being on an inner tube where I had no control over where I would go and was left to bounce with the waves. I say this in a most positive meaning. In reading the title about the Tide being Strengthened and then the opening of the poem, I was drawn to this emotion. Overall, after reading it several times I really was able to focus my emotions on the state of being. I appreciate that. I'll explain more in the sections below.

*Check2* Title:
As I said above, the title gave me a bit of wishy-washy with the imagery. To me, this was not a bad thing at all. In fact, I began to appreciate it more with each reading. Tides flow in and out. A strengthening tide would be more forceful as it pulls the sand from the beach.


*Check2* Imagery:
The imagery was subtle, which is something I really like. I prefer having to use my brain than being spoon fed. This poem, beginning with the image of the Tide in the title and continuing through the poem I had to search. I had to read it several times. Not to "get it" but to really feel it. I found going from being the victim to being included again at the end compelling. I started by feeling injured and ended feeling as if I was amongst friends again.


*Check2* Rhythm:
Since I am new to poetry, I don't have a lot to say here. I did enjoy for my part, going back and re-reading it several times with a different cadence, paying more attention to the punctuation and enjambment to help me see. It seems more free form. Please correct me on this as I am learning.

*Check2* Structure & Form:
The flow worked well for me. I felt like I could experience each emotion along the way.

*Check2* Theme:
As a new reader of poetry, I appreciate the additional line of explanation under the title, "Political polarization..." as it did help me understand the nuance behind it all. I love politics and the goings on in the world, so this drew me in quickly.

*Check2* Suggestions:
For my part, I have no suggestions. I will return to this poem and read it, again and again, to better understand as I do feel it was well done. Thanks for posting it and allowing this newbie to review!

Thank you for sharing your poem. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
10
10
Review of Annie  
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: E | (1.0)
Hi carlton607 ,
I just finished reading "Annie, and would like to share my thoughts. I found your story in the Rockin' Reviewer Academy Lesson 2. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
The suspense is real! I can practically feel the wind and feel the fright from wondering what is going to happen as the storm passes through. I grew up in a tornado alley, so this type of suspense story definitely speaks to me. There are a number of grammar issues that have a big impact on the story and make it a bit difficult to get through.

*Check2* Plot:
The plot is clear to me. A night surviving the storm. I think this was presented well.

*Check2* Style and Voice:
I'm including the dialog and grammar/mechanical critique in this one space. These go hand in hand for this story. Though I can tell there is passion in the story about the fear, this is lost through the various mechanical issues. As the story is told, there are several areas that include run-on sentences and incorrect word usage. These make it especially difficult to read since I have to go back and make sure I read it right or got the gist. This is an area that not everyone is proficient in, but because it is mechanical it is easy to fix.

One thing I noticed is the over use of the word "and". Combining the thoughts and actions with this word is appropriate, but when it is overused it makes the flow difficult. For example "She dreamed of what had happened and several times she woke up in a chilling puddle of worry." This might be better expressed by reworking the structure to something like "Several times through the night she was awoken by her dreams of the past." Though I left out the part about the puddle of worry, the point is still made without the "and" in it.

There are also some word usage issues that need to be vetted. Pieceful, instead of peaceful. "because of his tail wagged" should be something like "because his tail was wagging".

The end was a shock that I didn't see coming at all. Annie died. There was no lead up to the event and no suggestion that this was a possibility. It achieves the value of grabbing attention but is out of place without some sort of association through the story.

*Check2* Suggestions:
My first, and strongest suggestion, is to work on the readability of the story. Part of this will be fixing grammar (including punctuation and sentence structure) and word usage issues. Once those are fixed, I think you're well on your way to a successful story.

If you would like, I am happy to re-review this one after you've had a chance to work on it a bit.

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
11
11
Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: E | (4.0)
Hi Ametorpe ,
I just finished reading "An Act of kindness (Writer's Cramp), and would like to share my thoughts. I found your story after seeing your post in the Noticing Newbies forum. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
The story is short, but honestly, I think that gives it a maximum impact. I was driven to read this to the end. Good job with the imagery and the way you tell the story. I enjoyed this very much and felt as if I was standing on the other side of the road watching it all play out. I have a couple of suggestions below that I hope are helpful.

*Check2* Plot:
In my opinion, this was well done. I felt like the story really moved forward and kept my attention.

*Check2* Style and Voice:
I like the style you present. The short and succinct descriptions work well.

*Check2* Scene/Setting:
I felt that you did this very well also. An example of one that I especially liked was "The curtains had been left open because the night was hot and the moonlight filtered into the bedroom giving it a silvery glow."

You used just the right amount of words to give the idea without going overboard in the description. I can see this scene very well. I have the same sentiment throughout.

*Check2* Characters:
Since this is a shorter story, there's not much in the way of character development and that is fine here. Very easily I can understand everyone's role without having to go into detail. Any more would distract from the plot.

*Check2* Grammar and Mechanics:
This is an area that I feel may need just a little bit of work. Overall, it was fine, but there were some things that were distracting. For instance, having the bold was not usually needed. I do agree that the "KAAABOOOM!!" was well placed and well done. I wouldn't change that at all.

Using P.O.P instead of plaster of Paris was distracting. I would instead, just say "plaster" after you've already given the Plaster of Paris note previously.


*Check2* Suggestions:
Other than those mentioned above, I really don't have more suggestions. I think this was well written. Thanks for sharing!!

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review by William Stafford
In affiliation with The Rockin' Reviewers  
Rated: 13+ | (3.0)
Hi mgb ,
I just finished reading "Swordsmans's Solace Chapter 1 part 1, and would like to share my thoughts. I found your story after seeing your post on the Newbies Forum. I enjoyed reading it and hope you find this feedback useful. Keep in mind that these are my thoughts from reading your work. Please use anything you find useful and discard the rest. I am learning more from your writing than I could ever share. Thank you for sharing!

*Check2* Overall Impression:
I like how you introduced the various important characters. It's obvious from this first chapter that Nilo will have a role to play throughout the story. You didn't give away "what happened" which helps keep the suspense. There are some grammar and punctuation errors which slowed me down a bit when I was reading. More on that later. As you created each scene, the in-depth and detailed descriptions, though good, seemed to slow things down a bit. Overall though, I really liked it and hope to read more as you develop the story!


*Check2* Plot:
Since this is the first chapter, I think the plot will thicken. I like where you're headed. Just after reading this I know that Nilo did something and that the convicts are heading to their doom on a five-day journey. Anything could happen! I like this build, seriously!

*Check2* Style and Voice:
This part is always a bit harder for me to judge. This is definitely an area that I struggle with myself. I will say that I felt like I was bogged down by the detailed descriptions, as I mentioned before.

*Check2* Scene/Setting:
In setting the scene, the first one was great. It wasn't overly descriptive. However, some of the other descriptions seemed to be overly detailed, leaving very little to the reader's imagination. For a reader to invest more in the story, some of the descriptions can be a bit lax to let their imagination take over. Give them enough to head in the right direction. Here's an example: "Her second in command, from how he was dressed, which meant he was the arsehole running the whole affair. Some self-important Helvian ponce in Galdinian style full plate, with useless gold decorations riveted on. Pretty black hair and an unblemished face that made him look younger than Argere did not instill confidence."

The first sentence is great. It shows that his dress showed his power. With the one in bold and italics above, the description is heavy. The question to ask is "how does this move the story forward?" and "Is this critical to the story development?"


*Check2* Grammar and Mechanics:
This area does need some work. One thing that I noticed was the use of "or" quite a bit. This adds words that are not always needed for the story. An example is: " didn’t consider her influential or important enough". In this particular instance, the use of both "influential" and "important" are not needed. I would simply eliminate the "or important" part and the sentence would be great.

Convictes should be convicts. Other items such as comma usage also slow down the reading a bit. I use different tools for proofreading and it has helped me quite a bit. I admit, this isn't my strong suit so I do rely on the tools and then reviews from others to point me in the right direction here.

*Check2* Suggestions:
I really enjoyed reading this and hope you'll share more. I'd be glad to re-review this in the future if you want to make any changes. The suggestions I would put at the top of the list are:
1. Give the reader more ability to "imagine" things like the armor which more subtle descriptions.
2. As you read and re-read, ask whether or not each part moves the story forward or offers an important piece of information to the reader. If not, take it out and read it again.
3. Grammar and punctuation need to be checked. This wasn't as bad as it sounds, but it did slow me down a bit.

Thank you for sharing your story. Write On!

For more information on how the rating systems work, please read "Comment-In-A-Box

William Stafford
Rocking reviewer Bill Stafford




*Gold* My review has been submitted for consideration in "Good Deeds Get CASH!.
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Review of "Dear Me"  
Review by William Stafford
Rated: E | (4.5)
Wow! Your strength in the face of such trauma and adversity is inspiring. Battling on to complete your works, knowing that the big C could return at any moment shows your perseverance and true strength. I'm amazed at your 'dear me' story and compelled to re-evaluate my own life for changes that put the priorities in the right place. Thanks!
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Review of Darkness  
Review by William Stafford
Rated: E | (4.0)
Interesting poem. Do we live in constant fear or darkness? Is the candle lit or do we only get used to the lack of light? We view the world in dim light and fear what we cannot perceive. Though we try to look for the positive in life, do we plan for or expect the worse? Good imagery.
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Review by William Stafford
Rated: E | (5.0)
I have to admit that I have a hard time with poetry and often do not understand the meaning. This was incredible. I love the verses and feel the slap. I often have endless nights where I'm lying awake thinking about something to write being only at a loss. Thank you for this. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
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Review of Redemption  
Review by William Stafford
Rated: 18+ | (4.5)
What a riveting story. As I read each scene, I could see, feel, hear, and smell what was going on. Excellent descriptions. I couldn't stop reading if I wanted. I will admit that the end loses me a bit. I can't tell who was being buried. Part of me assumed it was the child based on the priest's words, another part of me is not sure. I want to read more to find out!

Great read. Thanks!
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Review by William Stafford
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Wow. What an incredible story. My own father had stories of various doctors appointments that ended in great frustration as he grew older. He often said he felt that a person had a "good until" date and once you passed that date, even the doctors treated you like you were a waste of their time. Well written and sad.
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Review of The Bag  
Review by William Stafford
Rated: E | (4.5)
Ahh, this was good. I thought the beginning was well written as you didn't have to build the scene in advance but I was able to visualize as the story went on. I almost missed the fact that Shawn was retired, so my mind was building an image of a younger (30 something) person.

The suspense of what was in the bag was also good. I was on the edge of my seat imagining a severed head. (I love watching mafia movies). When the two eyes were mentioned my mind exploded and then went immediately to "awww" when I read the rest. Well done.
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Review by William Stafford
Rated: 13+ | (5.0)
Wow, riveting! The idea of the ring's power conjures images of Lord of the Rings, where Bilbo puts on the ring and disappears. Thoughts of what happens next, where did they go, and what nefarious activities will ensue are racing through my mind!

My only issue is that I want to know more. Excellent work!
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Review of Walk Me Home  
Review by William Stafford
Rated: E | (3.5)
I very much enjoyed your story. I would love to see you expand this to a longer form short story with more depth, such as Patrick seeking to find the wife and what happens when he delivers the message.

One thing that gave me pause was how you presented the date and time. I could encourage a simpler method because it seemed to interrupt the flow. Otherwise, good job and keep it up!
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