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Suave View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote Suave Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Our feedback
    Posted: 03 Apr 2019 at 10:23pm
I personally like to be able to read everyone's feedback with out going to the stories origin.  I also like to hear what they think about it.  So, I will start by posting mine.

   My judges have showed that they were not doing the speed-reading approach, or if they did are really good at it.
They put a lot of effort into this and I have gotten a lot of useful info this time - not a usual occurrence from judges feedback let me tell you.

    Almost the first time a judge has mentioned my deplorable punctuation - a very real weak point in my writing that I have almost no control over due to a brain injury - I do use Grammarly, but obviously it is not perfect.

    My only nit is the very last needs work that criticized my "Bart's smile" recurring through the story, I would not change it and it is for the reader to come to their own conclusion about it, haha.
   

''Ulysses' Weakness'' -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY -

{1854}  I thought the piece was really imaginative. The writer seemed to really understand the heist tropes and this was a good example of creativity combined with genre conventions. The dialogue was strong.

  {1816}  Things are tense from the start and we're set up in a futuristic world.

The back and forth in time helps to build up the suspense as to what is happening on this ship. Then the countdown begins as we see the crime unfold.

We're left with a cliffhanger when the alarm goes off right before the ship is hit.

Then we see it all falling apart as their plan fails. What a great love ending for Ulysses and Wendy.

  {1610}  ~ In the world of Journalism, a study was done which determined that the beginnings and endings of paragraphs are what impact and stay with the readers most. This was a great ending to your first paragraph in flashback:

"But then again, these guys are almost the special forces of the underworld."

~ "Gypsy" is a great name for a station that has a wildness about it!

~ LOVED your plot-switch, and,

"If Wendy could purr, she looks about to..."

GREAT Finale!


  WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK -

{1854}  There were some run on sentences and comma splices. I'd definitely recommend the writer read their work out loud during editing to really get a good sense of what their sentences sound like.

There was also a really big cast of characters for such a short story. I'd recommend the writer take a look and make sure they're all necessary. It's hard to keep track of them all.

{1816}  This first sentence is awkwardly constructed. Suggest breaking up into two sentences:

The ship rocks, a hollow ringing reverberates through the structure of the ship, as a group everyone flinchs, looking warely to the ceiling

Look to use contractions in dialogue as it represents natural speech: "We have taken a hit!"

It's not clear who is telling this story. At times it seems that Ulysses is and then at times it seems like the author is speaking to the reader and at times it seems like am omniscient narrator. Look to have one character tell the story. And when the author breaks the frame of the story to talk to the reader, it pulls us out of the active story.

  {1610}  ~ Your logline gives away too much information by apparently stating a miserable outcome, when its purpose is to be enticing and open-ended enough to leave your audience eager to learn more.

Guidance:

~ The most effective Loglines contain these three elements:

your Protagonist(s),

their Goal, and

an Impediment to that Goal.

~ Typos and grammatical errors are elements under consideration in judging your entry, and having them occur on the title page or @ the very beginning of your plot raises a red flag of warning to any reader. So it's especially important to polish these pages to-the-max because they supply first impressions, for good or ill.

Your very opening line has problems:

"The ship rocks, a hollow ringing reverberates through the structure of the ship, as a group everyone flinchs, looking warely to the ceiling."

For starters, writing "the ship" twice is lazy writing when you could easily have edited the second out and said, " a hollow ringing reverberates through its structure" instead. I suggest you read your story aloud as this may help you catch such elements and improve them.

Then, the phrase about "a group" is loose because we don't know what it's comprised of and so can't picture it: crew, passengers, male, female, young, old, what race(s), what?

And finally, you misspelled both "flinched" and "warily."

~ I strongly recommend that you announce the craft as a spaceship immediately, not merely a ship, because most readers will assume the latter to be a watercraft.

~ The word "Underworld" is an Archetypal designation, so I suggest you capitalize it.

~ The same with "Show Time": CAP It, otherwise it reads like Ulysses is asking to have them show and synchronize their watches or some such.

~ The two statements by Bart and Detler following Ulysses' orienting speech read like non sequiturs. Plus you don't explain why most people feel the need to look away when Bart smiles.


Edited by Suave - 03 Apr 2019 at 10:31pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote justmel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2019 at 10:31pm
Here's mine (Heat 136: Action-Adventure, a rescue, a tourist):

''Caligula's Horse'' by Melinda Hagenson -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1663}  Excellent work.  An engrossing piece of short fiction with well-drawn characters, a sound story structure, and beautifully simple narration.  The author does an especially impressive job of maintaining the right amount of tension throughout, varying from calm to fraught, but never exaggerated.  {1944}  This is a discrete narrative with a clear beginning, middle and end.  The narratives are set up well and their overlap is written well.  Everything set up is resolved.  It is humorous, sweet, and witty.  {1569}  Action adventure stories with 60+ year old female protagonists are rare treats. The characters are engaging and likeable and their road trip is well described. Mia's rescue was suspenseful, and the shotgun blasts added to the excitement. 

WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1663}  There is some room to add detail to the story of the kidnapping.  Who is the girl?  Who is the man with the shotgun?  A passing first mention of it slightly earlier can help to focus the story on the chase later, instead of it seeming like a distraction from their larger trip.  But what's here now should not be drastically altered.  It's working fantastically.  {1944}  Make this longer or make it a series! Well-crafted and nice to see mobile elders as the protagonists.  {1569}  Action began very late in the story and ended relatively quickly. It might work better to bring action into the story earlier, especially in the action/adventure genre. Overall, better pacing, and the use of more action genre elements might help too.

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote alpaca_shearer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2019 at 10:33pm
wow, 1610 gave you way better feedback than he/she did for my story. Heres what I got:

''Eulogies'' by Adam Riley -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - 

{1892}  This story sucked me in right off the bat. You do an excellent job establishing character voice immediately, and it was impossible not to love Walter. You balance so many topics in a really successful way--from Walter's pain from losing his wife to his love of the lighthouse. I was so invested in his journey I found myself getting emotional at the end.  

{1906}  I really enjoyed the voice in this story--it's fresh and compelling, and Walter Bingham is a complex and tragic character, a true original who I immediately felt attached to and invested in. The writing is very strong, and there were certain lines that actually brought me to tears (for instance, Wickie hoping that the 13 men he saved from the Belle would balance out the 7 he killed in the war). Haunting and emotionally affecting.  

{1610}  ~ I appreciated the layered way you wove in the keeper's main identity with his love story, his war story, the rescue story, as well as philosophical musings on morality & mortality.

~ Nice plot-twist: that you up the ante with the threat of suicide and then quell that anxiety.

~ Your tale, albeit a "short" story, manage​d to convey some of the magnitude of over a century of lighthouse-keeping.  

WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - 

1892}  This story is already so successful, the only note I have is to consider switching up the writing style a bit. Although I like that each paragraph reads like a log, perhaps combining a few or playing with the length of them could make it more engaging. There also seem to be a lot of semicolons, so perhaps switching up some of the punctuation could be interesting, too.  

{1906}  I did enjoy the structure of the piece, but I think I would have liked to have known a little sooner that this was Wickie writing in the lightkeeper's log, as for the first few pages I felt a little adrift in time and space, not knowing where the "present" of the story was. I'm also wondering if perhaps the organization of the fragments could be tweaked slightly to reveal a bit more of a narrative arc--right now there is a bit of a lack of tension that I think could be ramped up simply by moving a couple of the pieces around. 


 {1610}  ~ Although I certainly apprehend how your protagonist was a bit of an anti-social curmudgeon, I found it jarring and excessively mean-spirited to have him display mockery of the Captain's lost eye and attempts at pirate panache.

~ I found myself wanting to know more about what happened to Sophie, not just your man's courtship of her.


I ended up in 2nd place in my group, so I'm pretty happy with the feedback and my result. 


2019 SSC R1EULOGIES (drama)
2019 SSC R2 Bang Bang on the Rio Grande (caper)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Lookit There Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2019 at 10:33pm
This is pretty amazing and thorough. Who doesn't love to read such praise? It almost makes up for coming *thisclose* to the Top 5 (I was HM #1). 
I can't deny that most of the "What Needs Work" critiques are valid. Also, notice that the judge who gave me the most praise also gave me the toughest criticisms. 

''Caution'' by Lin Morris -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1908}  This fits perfectly into the fairy tale genre and structure. You do a great job of introducing the setting and characters and moving from scene to scene while building up the plot. Alvaro's character development is clear throughout, as he begins to question what he really wants. The resolution is done very well, and the pacing is excellent.  {1854}  I thought the writer did a great job at setting up a unique story. I really liked the moral. I also liked how they used a combination of scenic time and exposition to tell the story. Great work.  {1610}  ~ You are truly a beautiful, beautiful writer!

~ For one, you have a talent for name-choices. So many were wonderful, but I have to say that "Betony" was especially ideal for a Queen with the powers of a dark Sorceress, as it sounds so similar to "Botany" that it implied someone who knew, and could manipulate, Nature's ways.

~ I also LOVED that this Queen likely did away with her husband/King after using him for copulation and impregnation ~ Ewwwww! How Praying Mantis~esque of her!

~ It was fabulously symbolic that her base ire was the death of the "higher" lights of the great candelabra.

~ So impactful was her outraged presence that, even as things were literally down to the wire regarding Alvar's marriage to Annora, I still had the vengeful regent's curse echoing,

"This marriage will never take place!"

~ For another, you did your homework, both with the inclusion of "Pyrus communis" for the pear trees, as well as such archaic words as "distaff," " posthaste", "caterwauling," etc.

~ In the world of Journalism, a study was done which determined that the beginnings and endings of paragraphs are what impact and stay with the readers most. You have sooo many gorgeous examples of either setting sentences apart as one-line paragraphs or ending paragraphs with compelling lines or phrases, giving your readers time to ponder them.

Examples:

~ "With that, she fled; so swiftly, those left behind couldn't swear she hadn't been carried on the backs of demons."

~ "Playing – without lessons, form, or plan!"

~ " He nestled the memory of the boy in his heart, recalling him with equal parts bafflement and worship."

~ "...felt an unexpected stirring of delight, an emotion as recognizable by its return as by realization of its long absence."

~ I love that you noted that Faron attempted to return Alvaro's kiss rather than leave us wondering if he was just a stupefied servant who dare not resist his Prince.

~ Quite the stunning plot-twist with Princess Leona pulling the blade!  


WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1908}  I'd love to see more interaction with Alvaro and Faron earlier on. Faron doesn't actually speak at all in the story, which makes it more difficult to root for them as a couple. Sudden weddings are definitely a trope that often appears in fairy tales, but it would still be nice to see this love story more developed, especially on Faron's part.  {1854}  I think, off the top, lots of characters are introduced without giving them anything differentiating. This, combined with the unique names made it hard to tell them apart and remember who was who throughout the story, especially since the princesses aren't in many scenes. Just adding a few details to tag who they are would really help, I think.  {1610}  ~ You never put a title or logline in quotation marks unless you are indicating an actual quote or are meaning to be ironic, sarcastic.

~ While I realize this story is gay-themed, I was very curious about the personalities of the two Princesses.

~ Given the strong impact that Faron had on Alvaro, I found it unbearable that so much time - years! - would pass between their encounters. Yes, I know the whole deal is that the Prince's life was circumscribed, but surely he would have TRIED to behold this Gardener as often as possible..

~ I found myself exceedingly frustrated by the lack of physical descriptions of your key characters.

~ It seemed a contradiction to describe the Mentor as "Poor Eldwyn" the only time he dared do something as dynamic as "caterwauling".



Edited by Lookit There - 03 Apr 2019 at 10:36pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Suave Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2019 at 11:19pm
Originally posted by alpaca_shearer alpaca_shearer wrote:

wow, 1610 gave you way better feedback than he/she did for my story. Heres what I got:



Haha, it just might be that mine really need the critique, where yours was much closer to what they thought it should be.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ABC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2019 at 11:30pm
I thought the feedback this year was more thorough than in previous years. I was quite happy and agreed with much of the criticism!


''Problem Finder, Problem Solver'' by Angie Ellis -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1592}  This is a kooky, funny story with some stand-out lines.  "How I was after Pete was a mother-f**king goddess about town" is great. "What the f**k, Barry" is laugh-out loud funny. "ike how you might imagine stick insects embrace" is inspired.

Annie has a strong, distinctive voice.

.  {1651}  In terms of style, this story was deeply fun and funny to read. You've taken great pains to make each character  feel specific and have different goals/wants in the story. The concept of framing the mystery from the dead woman's point of view was brilliant and allowed for both comedy and tension. (Tension because she couldn't communicate/respond to what's happening around her). Very enjoyable read!  {1816}  The narrator's voice is strong from the start and we are deep inside her head. Plus we get the conflict between her and her sister's husband right away too, adding to the tension.

This is a great line and very telling:  If you’ve ever hugged her, you know what I’m talking about— like brittle twigs under your arms.

The little details in the story add to it's dynamic, such as the contents of her purse spilling out. It's all easy to envision.

Love the inner dialogue of the narrator as she explains the scene around her.

The suspense builds as we get details leading to how she died, and consider all the players involved and wonder who could have killed her - and more mysteries unfold with the sister thinking she slept with Philip. It's morbid fun that the narrator can't speak as things happen around her.

Great line, tying in to the beginning description: Philip and Judith hug awkwardly, like how you might imagine stick insects embrace.

Great end as we see Barry lost after all.  WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1592}  This story might work better with a little bit more set-up earlier. In its current iteration, the reader has no chance of uncovering the mystery of her murder and is left entirely passive, which can be less than satisfying. How about making a little bit more of the lottery ticket in the beginning, perhaps explaining the significance of its number? And knowing where they are and what she is doing there a little earlier?

The sudden switch to exposition at the bottom of P 3 feels abrupt.

To note: her avowal of love for her sister at this point doesn't seem to jibe with earlier description of her sister.  {1651}  You set up this story as a dead woman trying to figure out her own death and present various colorful suspects with motives, but...we never find out what happened. Why? The story seems to lose steam as soon as the coroner is introduced. How was the dead woman murdered? Why does Phillip risk his (presumed) innocence to ask the coroner to keep the death quiet if it is suspicious? Why did Pete call everyone a million times last night? Was it about the lottery ticket expiring? I'd make that more clear. Why does Judith think her sister slept with her husband?  {1816}  It would be more believable if they checked to make sure she was dead, touch her neck, feel for a pulse, etc.

Why would the sister think she slept with her husband? Not sure how this fits into the story.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote M.Bellows09 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Apr 2019 at 11:51pm
Hello everyone!

Honest, I was a little conflicted with my feedback this time around. I've previously participated in the Flash Fiction Contest and was encouraged by one of the judges last time to give the Short Story Contest a try. 

I typically love when I get a lot of feedback/criticism because it really does help me improve as a writer and I usually never take it to heart. 

While I agree with the criticism of the first two judges, I feel like the third judge was a little off the mark. Some of his/her comments I can understand but, after rereading my story, I found most of his/her questions were answered in the narrative. 

Oh, well, I guess I'll just have to try again next time around!

Here's my feedback:

''Seventy Two'' by M Bowers


 - WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - 


{1953}  The physical/diagnostic details of the story--such as the "bloody lesions that had corroded the skin" (8) and

"the rash [leading] down to his ankle where hundreds of tiny swollen red bumps dotted his ankle and bare feet" (10)--were precisely described, stimulating the reader's imagination and interest regarding the many possible explanations for the man's death. 


 {1919}  This story was very well written with natural dialogue and descriptive but clear language. The atmosphere, situation, and supporting characters were set up with evocative and engaging descriptions. This felt like it could be a chapter from a published novel or scene from a crime drama show or film.  


{1883}  * I like the start you have on the 2 small-town officers...tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum

* I appreciate that a woman is your protagonist in this FBI role--we need more stories with strong women characters

* I want more in the behavior/emotions/attitude when she discovers she/they may have been contaminated and at risk of dying.

Here's what I think:  Determine if this story wants to be a mystery/comedy hybrid or mystery/drama hybrid. It's straddling all three, and I find that problematic.  


WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - 


{1953}  The ending of "Seventy Two"--Hitchcock's remark, “Off the record, I personally think we’re all screwed" (12)--arrives very abruptly and does not resolve (or suggest possible resolution) for any of the possible explanations the story introduces. Even if the story's ending remains open, it should provide stronger indication of the explanation it most strongly favors.  


{1919}  You could try to develop the main character in as much detail as the supporting characters.  The reader knows very little about Agent Hitchcock other than that she has a ponytail and is a medical examiner. Her reactions to the Deputy and Sherriff reveal that she's relatively unflappable, but it would be interesting if you let readers know more details about her -- how long has she been on the job, is she accustomed to sexism, is this her dream career, does she have any personality quirks or habits? This would help the reader feel more connected to her, as well as help drive the plot. You might try to expand on the ending a bit more so it doesn't feel so abrupt. Even a single, more detailed sentence about the state of the body, the length of time it's been in the water, and their exposure could add to the drama. 


 {1883}  * The opening (3) "Three days" references are challenging. The first one, "Three days" feels like we're waiting for something to happen in three days time. The second, "Three days since the escape" moves us back in time. "Three days before we'd finally found him..."  It doesn't work for me...I'm already feeling slowed down in trying to understand what's going on.

It's over-written. Keep it simple. And consider: What ABOUT those three days? What is the emotion attached to what those 3 days were like for the protagonist and his team?

* "we'd finally found Dennis Owen, the terrorist..."

(no need for "him," it slows down the pacing and isn't necessary.)

* half-bare

* Why are his hands burning?

* What if this were written in the present tense? Might give it more immediacy...

* "Calculating my observation" - You don't need this, as he already has done so with "...wear your boots. It looks a little muddy."

* "had been a disgruntled veteran..." (not "was")

* Not sure I want this in this spot of the story: "one of whom we suspected of murdering Owen." Feels like story is giving away too much and reads very expositional. Let this suspicion come through in some dialogue later, or in some other way so the story can unfold--rather than giving it all to the reader up front.

* Some details are too much and slow the pacing down, and don't add to the story (and add words, you only have 2500 to work with!) EX: "I turned the key, shutting off the ignition, and opened the car door..."

All of this is too much. Simplify and streamline the writing here.

* Does she have boots? Was she prepared for this? Why the groan? Is she in the wrong footwear? What does it tell us about her as a detective if she didn't think ahead to bring/wear boots? Is this good for your story? Your character?

* "dancing silhouettes" - makes for an odd image in my mind

* "They towered just off the bank..." ? What does this mean?

* face-down

* Punctuation needed I think for the  long sentence about the corpse...

* If Hitchcock was called on the phone to go to where the body was found (aka crime scene)  I feel as though she would have made a point of saying "don't move or touch anything."

* "...letting women do (this) sorta thing now?"

* "I raised an eyebrow at the old bat, twitching my petite nose like Samantha Stephens." - This behavior and reference doesn't work for me...just my opinion.

I think her clever retort says plenty!!

* I'm confused as to why Hult is asking what could bring her there. How did she find out about the body? If they were doing a massive man-hunt for a convict wouldn't it have been on the news? The man is in an orange jumpsuit.

* ...with the accomplice being our primary suspect." ? Really? hmmm

* "Nothin' in there that body didn't put in there!" ? I don't understand this sentence

* Why the leap to an illness? Why not inform these two goofballs of her concerns, in the event that they are all indeed "contaminated"?

*The body is still in the water when she's doing all this forensic work...Wouldn't she be standing in water? I don't see when the body was pulled on to the shore...review this

* Hitchcock is a litterbug ; )

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Seacore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2019 at 12:26am
WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - 
{1933} This was a very intelligent and grisly variation on the classic tale. 
{1836} I really enjoyed the premise of a horror version of Pinocchio - very easily accessible and you made the doll sufficiently creepy 
{1615} I really liked this dark retelling of Pinocchio. 

 WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - 
{1933} I could see taking a bit more time in the wooden boy's transition from innocence to evil but it's in fine shape. 
{1836} I would love a bit more detail and imagery to really put the reader into this otherwise captivating story 
{1615} The son's transition from puppet brought to life to murderous creature is abrupt. I suggest emphasizing how much of a clean slate he is in the beginning. Perhaps he learns the wrong lesson somewhere. Or maybe he just doesn't have an innate sense of morality and the father fails to notice this. I think that would work better than saying the devil wanted to use this opportunity to bring evil into the world.


I will admit to being a little frustrated with this feedback. The positives were really just saying that liked my concept, but I guess I can infer that they also think I pulled it off?
But for the needs work section, I completely agree with 1836 that I need more description, I'm always low on that. But for 1615, it feels like they would just have preferred me to tell a slightly different story.

Compared to these, the feedback from other entrants was super valuable as it discussed my pacing, my awkward sentence structure and also let me know that I'd hit the tone right with my word choices.


Edited by Seacore - 04 Apr 2019 at 12:30am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote M.Bellows09 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2019 at 12:53am
Originally posted by Seacore Seacore wrote:

WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - 
{1933} This was a very intelligent and grisly variation on the classic tale. 
{1836} I really enjoyed the premise of a horror version of Pinocchio - very easily accessible and you made the doll sufficiently creepy 
{1615} I really liked this dark retelling of Pinocchio. 

 WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - 
{1933} I could see taking a bit more time in the wooden boy's transition from innocence to evil but it's in fine shape. 
{1836} I would love a bit more detail and imagery to really put the reader into this otherwise captivating story 
{1615} The son's transition from puppet brought to life to murderous creature is abrupt. I suggest emphasizing how much of a clean slate he is in the beginning. Perhaps he learns the wrong lesson somewhere. Or maybe he just doesn't have an innate sense of morality and the father fails to notice this. I think that would work better than saying the devil wanted to use this opportunity to bring evil into the world.


I will admit to being a little frustrated with this feedback. The positives were really just saying that liked my concept, but I guess I can infer that they also think I pulled it off?
But for the needs work section, I completely agree with 1836 that I need more description, I'm always low on that. But for 1615, it feels like they would just have preferred me to tell a slightly different story.

Compared to these, the feedback from other entrants was super valuable as it discussed my pacing, my awkward sentence structure and also let me know that I'd hit the tone right with my word choices.

Based on what the judges wrote, your story sounds very intriguing! I'd love to read it. Horror is my favorite genre and I excel at writing it. This time I got mystery, though, which is a first for me! I had some issues with my account for most of the competition. For some reason it wouldn't let me access the forums, so I wasn't able to post or read any of the stories from the other competitors. I've got a lot of catching up to do! 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote srussell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2019 at 1:00am

''Murder at the Old Saint’s Fashion Show'' by Samuel Choy -   


WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - {1854}  I thought the Charlie was a lot of fun to read. He had a great sense of humour, as did the author.  {1597}  I liked the line about red blooded Americans who are attracted to women. I liked some of the quips about social media. I liked how the narrator had such strong affection for the Old Saint's.  {1749}  Your story was solid, contained good dialogue, and flowed well.  Most importantly, it made sense.  I liked the plot that the "ex-sister" had turned evil and had hired a hitman to kill  her sister.

I also enjoyed the humor you added in your first few paragraphs.  Well done.  WHAT 


THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - {1854}  I'd recommend the writer work on their prose style. There were a lot of repeated sentence constructions throughout. There was also a ton of exposition in this story. I'd recommend the writer try to write more in scenic time.  {1597}  I would consider using the third person for this story, because I'm not sure the first person voice is coming through with as much personality as is required. I like your dialogue but in some cases the exchanges go on for too long and should be broken up with some exposition. I think the ending could be stronger as well, cutting to a year in the future takes some of the punch out of it.  {1749}  It might have been an added plus to implicate at least one other person as a possible suspect.  For a mystery, it was a bit simplified.


I pretty much agreed with both the positive and negative reviews. I didn't have as much time to put into the story as I would have liked this time around, and it showed.



Edited by srussell - 04 Apr 2019 at 1:03am
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