|Review:||Jackson Robles says:|
Hi. I was perusing Joop's review thread (because that's what I do, though Joop is one of many a-victim of my pseudo-stalking) and I saw this story. You sounded honest to God passionate, so I wanted to take a look. And you want honesty, and I've been in that position before, so here goes. :)
First bit, about Josephine (I assume) crying. The bit about her actually crying seems to drag on and snags on its words a bit. It's definitely a good image. One tear, then many, then collapsing and sobbing uncontrollably. There's definite power and emotion there, I can feel it, but it also feels like you're running the scene through a pile of rocks - not a nice pool of water like it should be, you know? The description itself I think should be stripped a bit. Because the simplicity is great, and so early on trying so hard to get an emotional reaction is counter productive to your goal. And just getting an emotional reaction so early on in the story is a hard goal to strive for, you know? The final line of narration in that part is the best I think, and that formula should be taken throughout (at least this part). Simplistic, but vague and hard to grasp without a bit of prior knowledge (like a Radiohead song ;D).
The second sentence seems like it drags on a bit as well. The part about lying her way through this life to the greatest family she's ever known. I hate giving criticism without any ideas to change, but with that sentence, it might be a necessary evil. haha ;)
I think you might have the same problem I (and I'm very sure most writers, professional or otherwise) fight through on a daily basis. The word, oddly enough, if wordiness. Writing more than you need to in the attempt to convey a certain idea, thereby clouding the idea with semi-useless labels and adjectives.
Unstoppable Lord Voldemort is an example. See, because there's nothing wrong with it grammatically, but reading the sentence out loud you get the feeling there is more there than there should be. You know? haha
Your shortest sentences are when you're at your best. They hold the most weight with me. The rest seems a bit filler to me, wrapping haphazardly around these really poignant lines.
"Please donít judge me too hastily, just yet." - is a prime example of the wordiness! (And I know I'm beating the horse to death with this, but it's important and takes time to work on, I know - you can just ask Alopex. We spent a year killing mine - nearly - but you are nowhere near as bad as I was.)
This sentence could simple read, 'Please don't just me just yet.' and be completely fine.
It should really be pouring down unforgiving raindrops, accompanied by harsh winds, blindingly bright bolts of lightning and unbearable claps of thunder.
^Overlaod. haha Okay! Now, in moderation, this type of adjective use is great! But each noun gets its own adjective and the sentence drags.
If we tweak it a bit - "It should really be pouring down rain accompanied by harsh winds, bolts of lightning and unbearable claps of thunder." I dunno, it reads differently. I dunno if better, I mean I think a bit - but in the end it's up to you.
And that's very important! I'm just voicing what I thought! And my opinion really doesn't mean much - it's up to you. I don't mean any harm. I'm not the best at being nice, but I do try very hard. :)
Now, writing aside, can we look at the story? The plot and all that god stuff? Erm, Fred having a best friend that WASN'T George? But then again, Fred's allowed to have more than George as a friend. While they were usually inseparable, I think it's viable for Josephine to have been ol' Freddy's friend.
But for the beginning, well, it was a beginning. I liked it (that's very important in a rare from me, I mean what I say, I'll have you know). And I will most certainly be watching for the next few chapters to see how the story and writing looks. Both equally entertain me, you see. And this story so far has entertained me.
On that note! I had better wrap this up before it gets too long. I like the premise of this story, it has a hitch (good thing), you know? Anyways, have fun writing, I'm sure I'll talk to you again soon.
Author's Response: Hey there, Jackson Robles! Well, I have to say that I am SO glad you chose to stalk Joops thread, then, because this review has been very helpful! :-D
That first bit, now that you've pointed it out as being more effective with just a bit more vagueness and even more simplicity, makes total sense! It seems so obvious now that you've mentioned it - the story should reveal itself in time: I don't need to give the details during that moment because that is supposed to be the mystery of the piece! Duh. Haha, thank you! :-D
The 'unstoppable' description and the 'too hastily, just yet' and the whole storm/weather scenario all definitely make sense, because you're absolutely right - my writing is most powerful when I feed it in smaller lines, less is more, that whole thing - so why am I overdoing it every once in while?? No idea. lol And I'm really glad that you agree, because it's my favorite technique in other author's as well - I love simplicity, so it's a true compliment that my simplistic parts are the most powerful! Now I just need to bring that to the rest of the fic. haha
You're not good at being nice?? Well, this certainly seems nice enough to me! I asked for true, honest responses and you gave me exactly that and you did it in a kind, logical, understanding way without sounding condescending or negative at all! This is what I wanted and you did that - and I didn't even ask you to! You took that initiative all on your own, which I truly appreciate! (Do you like how I'm reviewing your review now??? bahaha) ;-)
As for Fred and Josephine's friendship - simply don't forget that all I said was that Josephine's best friend was lying in a box - that doesn't necessarily mean that Josephine is Fred's best friend! George is Fred's number one, but... well, if you continue to read, you'll understand the relationships here! 0:-)
On a similar note, I SO hope that you do come back for later chapters, as your feedback has been very helpful! It seems to all be focused around the same principal, too, which makes it easy to edit on my own! And now I have more to look for in my next chapter as well, I'll know what to concentrate on!
I'm glad chapter one has entertained you and that you plan to watch for the next few chapters - and seeing as you are a self-proclaimed rare-to-please type reader, I am very grateful that you're even considering retuning and that my first chapter has you interested!
Thank you again for the wonderful review! :-)