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File 134396294557.png - (491.41KB , 708x581 , celestia-splash.png )
114434 No. 114434
Greetings all, and welcome to the Training Grounds, the review thread for all authors, reviewers, proofreaders, and editors, both newcomer and seasoned veteran alike. It isn’t the only such thread, but it’s usually the busiest! (Previous edition of The Training Grounds: >>110790 The sticky, which contains important information: >>98618)

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Sithicus Helpicus: Several takes on the same paragraph of text by multiple authors. http://bit.ly/ovOXpn
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Unspoiler all text  • Expand all images  • Reveal spoilers
>> No. 114435
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114435
Unclaimed: 7
Reviews In Progress: 13
Reviews awaiting acknowledgment: 24

Unclaimed Stories
07/22/2012 ❖ Snake Tales P by OrckDorck (>>112662)
07/27/2012 ❖ Their Otherworldly Grace by MonoGlyph (>>113641)
07/30/2012 ❖ Grand Prix by Arbarano (>>114028)
07/30/2012 ❖ Void by Damocl (>>114119)
08/01/2012 ❖ Not Exactly Green; No ODST Is by SpilledInk (>>114297)
08/01/2012 ❖ Draconequus by cheezesauce (>>114313)
08/02/2012 ❖ Twilight Alone by Tridus (>>114424)

Reviews in Progress
Still Waters: reviewing Friendship is Aura by KangTheSpartan (>>104728) submitted 05/31/2012
Grif: reviewing Ideas Live On by Dromer (>>106740) submitted 06/14/2012
Filler: reviewing Schism by melknin (>>108342) submitted 06/23/2012
AzuNyan: reviewing Nopony's Innocent by Eyeclops (>>110818) submitted 07/11/2012
Minjask: reviewing Wish I May, Wish I Might by JC Borch (>>113703) submitted 07/17/2012
NumberNine99: reviewing Mines of Equestria by LunarShadow (>>112645) submitted 07/22/2012
Halcyon: reviewing Twilight's Odyssey by DemPonies (>>113541) submitted 07/27/2012
Doseux: reviewing The Cost of Utopia by Doctorfreedom (>>113638) submitted 07/27/2012
"The_Incredible_Blunderbolt
:
reviewing Acquiesce by Equ-us (>>113650) submitted 07/27/2012"
AzuNyan: reviewing A Leaky Roof by SterlingNomad (>>113837) submitted 07/29/2012
alexmagnet: reviewing Clover's Creed by Your Antagonist (>>113950) submitted 07/29/2012
Casca: reviewing The Devil And The Dunce by Your Antagonist (>>113951) submitted 07/29/2012
Anonymous: reviewing Days of Their Lives by alexmagnet (>>114116) submitted 07/30/2012

Reviews Awaiting Acknowledgment
Pinkamena: The Dark Descent by Wolokai (>>106197) submitted 06/10/2012 ❖ Reviewed by soundslikeponies on 07/04/2012 (>>109628)
Friendship Ends by BristleWings (>>107705) submitted 06/18/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Pascoite on 06/22/2012 (>>108159)
In Flame by SteelEagle (>>107639) submitted 06/18/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Johnfreemanwepon on 07/24/2012 (>>112995)
The Road To Ponyville by GlueFactory (>>107841) submitted 06/21/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Randomnumbersgohere on 07/16/2012 (>>111662)
To Endure by Shamus_Aran (>>108303) submitted 06/23/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Conchshellthegeek7 on 07/13/2012 (>>111037)
The Reach by Gearbox (>>108446) submitted 06/26/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Writer's Block on 07/04/2012 (>>109651)
Pinkie Pie's Phenomenal Ponytech Party by Still Waters (>>109247) submitted 07/01/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Kirdus on 07/17/2012 (>>111929)
Nightdreams and Daymares by Mareinthemoon (>>98882) submitted 07/03/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Minjask on 07/20/2012 (>>112391)
Epiphany by Yourmainbrony (>>109457) submitted 07/03/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Umbra on 07/08/2012 (>>110391)
Neon Labyrinth by SoundofRainfall (>>109589) submitted 07/03/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Minjask on 07/18/2012 (>>112109)
My Little Old Republic by AidanMaxwell (>>109810) submitted 07/05/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Minjask on 07/28/2012 (>>113690)
Out of Fashion by xjuggernaughtx (>>109838) submitted 07/05/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Umbra on 07/07/2012 (>>110152)
Blessed Ones by Hollyfern (>>110251) submitted 07/07/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Conchshellthegeek7 on 07/10/2012 (>>110719)
The Wanderer's Wife by Arbpw (>>110767) submitted 07/11/2012 ❖ Reviewed by bronyZ on 07/31/2012 (>>114291)
Harmony's End by JawJoe (>>110907) submitted 07/12/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Seattle_Lite on 07/19/2012 (>>112167)
The Canterlot Music Competition by TheOrchestralBrony (>>111571) submitted 07/15/2012 ❖ Reviewed by cheezesauce on 07/22/2012 (>>112647)
The Miracles of Harmony by Cody The Kirby (A.K.A: Ghostwriter the Scribe) (>>112371) submitted 07/20/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Figments on 07/21/2012 (>>112876)
Daring Do and the Power of the Goddess by Ponyman (>>112769) submitted 07/23/2012 ❖ Reviewed by NumberNine99 on 07/27/2012 (>>113442)
A wrinkle of light by James Caudry (>>113006) submitted 07/24/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Your Antagonist on 07/31/2012 (>>114153)
Of Chaos and Harmony by Monster Hunter Brony (>>113057) submitted 07/24/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Pascoite on 07/31/2012 (>>114295)
Chain Of Memories by AlphaNova (>>113090) submitted 07/24/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Doseux on 07/30/2012 (>>114014)
Last Chance by The_Incredible_Blunderbolt (>>113664) submitted 07/27/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Pascoite on 07/29/2012 (>>113998)
A Scribe's Work Chapter 1: Scribes Are Weird. by Cody The Kirby(A.K.A: Ghostwriter the Scribe) (>>113721) submitted 07/28/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Seidio on 08/02/2012 (>>114373)
Nothing is Scarier by DuncanR (>>114018) submitted 07/29/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Bronius Maximus on 07/30/2012 (>>114026)
>> No. 114439
Is it just me, or does nopony acknowledge reviews anymore?
>> No. 114441
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114441
It's been a while since I've tossed this one around /fic/, and seeing as how there have been some decisions to keep it as a oneshot, I'm circulating it through once again for a couple last times before sending it to EQD.

[Title] Paradise Lost
[Author] Xelor
[Tags] Dark, Alternate Universe
[Email] [email protected]
[Synopsis] "A lie begets a lie, and the world must be protected by one."

Skyward Arrows, a simple author on the run from his own city, is faced with a decision that will change the course of history forever. Yet with every power comes a hefty price.

[Link] https://docs.google.com/document/d/1TdsANlCc0vmWww6ykXzkjh9tUIMeo0psSARkOsUDI_Q/edit?pli=1

[Chapters] Oneshot

[EQD Stuff] Thank you for submitting your story to EQD... and for stumping me. I'm really not entirely sure what to do with it! It's well written, but you've left me with many more questions than I started with.

The magical book was a nice idea... but I'm wondering a lot about the world of the Author. What's going on? Why is the Empire so cruel? Where did this book come from? What's this sect he seems to be working with?

And once the world is re-made, where in time did 'Our' Equestria start? Was it pre-Celestia? Pre-Discord?

So many unanswered questions... I do think your story would do better if this were re-written and fleshed out.

Honestly? It's also a good start to a MUCH longer story.

Regardless, the choice is yours.

I'm sending this back to you for editing; you do need to firm up your formatting and add in a few tweaks here and there. You can do that, then resubmit... and it ought to be ready to post.

I would however offer a plea to you to consider re-writing and expanding upon this. You've left me with questions... and that can be a very good thing if you choose to answer them.

-Pre-reader 23-ish

---------------------------------------------------

Thank you for your submission to Equestria Daily. I cannot at this time recommend it for posting, due to numerous errors in the writing and tone:
The writing in general is very awkward, with poor word agreement and missing words not making it any easier to read. There are formatting errors as well, including extra whitespace and un-italicized thoughts.
Do not use asterisks in prose. Sounds can exist on the page unaltered, or in italics.
The dialogue is very poor, especially between Diamondback and Skyward. The former sounds like a pat villain, spouting lines I've heard numerous times before to poor effect. Furthermore, the conversation serves only as exposition and is thus very dry.
Use of the phrase "a single tear" is generally frowned upon as an over-the-top attempt to force emotion out of an otherwise emotionless scene, as it is in this piece.
Finally, I was not entirely convinced of the ability of one seemingly normal unicorn mage to rewrite his world into Equestria, especially as I assume the 'successor' he spoke of is Celestia.
I anticipate some explanation forthcoming, and as such request that you include a first chapter upon your resubmit.

This is the second of three strikes for this story. Please take your time rewriting. Consult the Editors' Omnibus and get at least one reviewer from Ponychan to look over this and anything else you write to make sure it is suitable for the blog. There is something worthwhile in this -- starting in medias res was a good thing, and the general concept is interesting -- so I would hate to see it strike out.

Good luck,

-Pre-reader #6EQUJ5

------------------------------------------------

[Comments] That's pretty much it. I want to know whether or not I should expand it, or keep it as is.


Oh, this is also in SLP's queue and Minty's queue

Thanks.
>> No. 114443
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114443
>>114439
>>114434
I know that feel. Still, we press on, right?
>> No. 114445
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114445
>>114439

No, it doesn't look like it. =(
>> No. 114459
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114459
>>114439
It's their loss.

Acknowledgement is asked for to signify an end to the finished review sitting in the active queue. It sits in the active queue to make it easier to find, because otherwise (and before the advent of the spreadsheet) you'd have to Ctrl-F back through all the threads to find the review, and most people don't have that patience or gumption.

I stopped advocating removing unacknowledged reviews from the active queue because the main reason for removing them was to make it easier to find unclaimed stories. That's not so much of an issue now that there are filtered sheets displaying only the unclaimed stories and recent reviews.
>> No. 114464
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114464
Wellp, I just Bcc'd over 20 people about their reviews.

Hopefully having an email address column in the autosheets will encourage communication.
>> No. 114465
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114465
>>114013

DemPonies!
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/55001004/TwilightsOdyssey-Prologue.doc
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/55001004/TwilightsOdyssey-Chapter1.doc

Wanted to post this yesterday, but Ponychan was down when I went on. Sorry about that.

And sorry for being picky, but:
>>114424

Claim.
>> No. 114476
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114476
>>114435
>Dat pic
I just saw that movie for the first time the other night

The review for My Little Old Rebublic was acknowledged on Fimfiction, sorry I forgot to mention.
>> No. 114480
just want to acknowledge my review. First, thank you, second, I will take everything you said into account and work on resolving it.
>> No. 114508
Very sorry for making you wait a whole goddamn month. Hopefully, this makes up for it. Unfortunately, I didn't cover everything, only what I saw.

The last time I did (what I suppose can be considered) a proper review was well over two months ago. You have my sincerest apologies if I've said anything unhelpful or incorrect. Please take what I say with a grain of salt; except for most of the grammatical things I point out, everything I say is simply my opinion. Also, sometimes I make things up. If this seems disproportionately long, it's because I copy and paste a lot of your words. Also, I am wordy.

I might use words that might not make sense at first, and you probably won't find any meanings of those with Google. That's because I use words in ways they aren't actually meant to be used. Hopefully, you'll understand what I mean when I say things like “you give part of this sentence too much weight”, where “weight” means something like “the amount of attention you want the reader to give something relative to other somethings of the same kind”, among other things.


Initial thoughts
-Good god, this is long. And this is only chapter one? I suspect either too much fluff or that this chapter can be broken up into two or more smaller chapters. As it stands, it's twenty-two chapters in LibreOffice.
-Good god, text wall. The two-spaces-for-paragraph-indents thing is for physical page printing, where space matters. You pretty much get infinite space on Google Docs, so don't worry about that. Use the tab button if you're going to indent. Alternatively, put a space between your paragraphs, like in the picture I've attached to this post. Common formatting standards say to choose either indent or the space, but it's not uncommon for pony fics to do both.
-Your synopsis seems fairly dry, and you seem to recognize that. Looking at it:
>Luna's return should have heralded a new golden age for Equestria, but as Luna and Celestia begin working together, Luna starts to question the wisdom of her sister's governance. When Luna confronts Celestia the princesses' division erupts into a conflict that threatens to divide all of Equestria and even pit friend against friend.
First, these two sentences both introduce an idea. Look at the thread >>114003, where it has a nice screenshot from that-video-everyone-who-writes-something-should-watch. (You can find the video at >>114009. If you haven't watched it yet, do so now. Think of it as required reading.) Now, imagine if that curve's first two bumps were pretty much at the same height. That's what happens when you have two sentences that sound like they're both introducing something. (Of course, all sentences introduce something, but these sentences sound like they're fighting each other for position of “first sentence”. It's because... I'm not sure what it is exactly, actually. Probably has something to do with the second sentence not actually building upon something introduced in the first. The part in the first sentence that connects it to the second seems more like an afterthought in that sentence, given the amount of weight in-sentence that you've given it.) Also, good god are those sentences long.
>Friendship and family will be tested as everypony is forced to take sides in an Equestria split in two.
-This sounds like you're trying to hype the depth of your story... in Ben Stein's voice. It's just so nonchalant.


Stream of Consciousness
>Luna paced around her bedroom, retracing the same path she had been following for the past several hours.
-Several hours? That seems a bit much, even for She-Who-Raises-The-Moon.
-Style note: You appear to not use “that” before your dependent clauses. While grammatically correct (and fairly common), I'm not a fan of that in narrative. What you have now also sets a less serious mood for your fic chapter, which you may or may not want.

>She made a passing glance toward her bed but made no move toward it.
-Consider “glance at” over “glance toward”. “Toward” means “moving in the direction of”, but glances are fairly static.
-”Toward” is used twice in this sentence. It sounds repetitive.
-Likewise, “bed” sounds repetitive, given the “bedroom” from the sentence prior.

>Instead she heaved a heavy sigh and returned to her endless walk about the room.
-Unless you're writing in some variation of UK English that I heavily dislike, when you begin a sentence with an adverbial phrase, you require a comma after it. For example: “After this phrase, there is a comma.” Or in your case, you need the comma after “Instead.” Because this issue seems systematic, I will repeat it in bold several times to try to stress the importance of this comment:
When you begin a sentence with an adverbial phrase, you require a comma after it.
When you begin a sentence with an adverbial phrase, you require a comma after it.
When you begin a sentence with an adverbial phrase, you require a comma after it.

That is hopefully enough to make you remember it, but not too much so that it's all you remember.
-You spend two sentences (this and the one before it) describing what is effectively one action: not going to bed. By giving one action undue attention, you mess up your pacing, and that's notably bad this early in your story.

>It was the middle of the afternoon, a time at which Luna would normally be asleep and gaining strength the strenuous act of raising the moon.
-I think you accidentally a word between “strength” and “the”.

>But this afternoon Luna was struck with a case of insomnia, a problem which had started to become a recurring problem for her.
-You need a comma after “afternoon”. Note how you use a comma after “afternoon” in the last sentence. That's correct. This is not.
-While it's not grammatically incorrect to start your sentences with a conjunction, doing it here is awful because it messes with your pacing considerably. There's no reason that this can't be joined with the sentence prior—any length problems could be solved with A. splitting the paragraph, making the paragraph less heavy or B. shortening the sentences by cutting out repetitions. For example, here you say “this afternoon” in this sentence while saying “the afternoon” in the last one. Alternatively, C. replace “But” with “however”. (And don't put “however” at the beginning of the sentence should you choose to take that option. It'd be a sideways move rather than forward, or so I think.)
-You use the word “problem” twice in this sentence. “Recurring problem” indeed.
-On that note, you also use the (noun) (adverbial phrase modifier) structure here as well. “problem which had...” and “time at which...” sound pretty repetitive. Vary your sentence structure.
-That can be solved by cutting some things. You don't really need to say call it a problem when you describe just what it is. ...Using the word “problem”, no less.

>And of course, Luna reflected in bitter irony, the anxiety caused by her sleep deprivation was only adding fuel to the problem.
-Consider changing “was only adding” to “only added”. Here's the thing about “was verbing”: It's usually better off as just “verbed.” Take, for example, the following:
>Twilight Sparkle was sitting at a table, reading the book she bought yesterday.
>Twilight Sparkle sat at a table, reading the book she bought yesterday.
And assume that Twilight Sparkle is the focus of the passage. Now, if it was the first example, it would read awkwardly. This is (or so I think) because when I say “Twilight sat”, you can assume that she remains seated until I state otherwise. There's nothing stopping her from ceasing her sitting, barring a sudden swarm of bees, or Spike calling to her and telling her to get up, or some other external force. Sentence one means that at that moment in narrative, Twilight was seated at the table and reading. Sentence two can mean either that she sat down while reading the book and kept reading it after sitting down, or that she was already seated and reading the book. One is “was verbing”; two can also be “was verbing” or it can be “began to verb”. That is, assuming “beginning to verb” doesn't need to mean “stop verbing” at some point. This is comparable to verbs like “stood” or like the “was … adding fuel” in your sentence here. (You can move onto the next hyphen-point if you think you've read enough words on why you should use “only added” instead of “was only adding” in this sentence.)
Compare that to this:
>Twilight Sparkle was eating her sandwich.
>Twilight Sparkle ate her sandwich.
Contrasting with sitting down, eating a sandwich can't be done forever—or at least, Twilight has (or can reasonably be assumed to have) no intention of eating forever. Because of that, we can assume that Twilight stops eventually. Thus, the first sentence here means “was verbing” while the second sentence means “began to verb, then finished verbing”. This is comparable to verbs like “ran” and “slept”.
Also, “verbed” has less words than “was verbing” and means pretty much the same thing most of the time while keeping the simple past tense that narrative is usually written in. On top of that, as a fellow /fic/ regular stated:
>[04:20:07] <[name withheld]> [. . .] "was verbing" sounds boring and uninteresting, but that "verbed" is lively and engaging.
That's pretty important, too. That's my theory, anyways. I stand behind my suggestion because it sounds better to me, but everything up there is an attempt to justify that position.
-Consider “fueled” over “added fuel to”.
-When you use “of course”, you assume that everything in the sentence is already known. That's what “of course” tends to mean. In this case, I as the reader did not know that Luna's sleep deprivation gave her anxiety.
-You've used “the problem” very often. It's become extremely repetitive.

>Even though it had been some time since she'd returned from her exile on the moon Luna was still struggling to with her homecoming.
-Consider a comma after “moon”.
-You accidentally a word after “struggling”, it seems.
-Consider changing ”was still struggling” to “still struggled”

>It wasn't just figuring out the new societal norms or technology, though there were certainly no shortage of problems for her to overcome there, but it was also figuring out what she was meant to do with herself in a kingdom she didn't fully understand.
-You seem to be rather... scattered with your narrative, like you don't have a single focus. I suppose the best analogy I can think of would be driving. You drift the car from side to side, occasionally crossing over lane separators and making your passengers inside fairly dizzy.
-On top of that, your sentences are pretty verbose. For example, “what she was meant to do with herself” says very little (“her purpose”, perhaps, or that with some added modifier) in a lot of words. While verbosity slows down pacing, an effect that you appear to want here, it seems like you're going far overboard with it.
-“Didn't fully understand” doesn't say much—it says the what, not the how. The how—the connection between “didn't fully understand” and “societal norms or technology” (or at least, I assume that is the connection you're trying to make)—is tenuous at best.

>Celestia had ruled Equestria for a thousand years in Luna's absence, so Luna had had no need to step in and take away responsibilities Celestia had been easily managing on her own.
-”Had had” is awkward to read. Consider replacing with “Luna had never needed to...” or something of that sort.
-”Step in” is redundant. If she's taking responsibilities away from Celestia, the intervention is implied.
-The “so” implies a cause and effect, but without some kind of addition, it requires a leap of logic to work. You seem to require something like “had ruled Equestria alone for...”. As it is, you're lumping part of the cause with the effect. In fact, as it is, you could manage with deleting everything between “Celestia had ruled” and “so”.

>And even if Luna had wanted to return to Celestia's side, she was certain she wasn't yet ready to take on a task as monumental as ruling Equestria.
-Well, it's not like she'd be doing it alone.
-You imply that Luna does not want to return to Celestia's side. I do hope you have justification for this, since Luna looked pretty happy in both of the episodes she had actual roles in.
-Try to avoid starting sentences with “And” when adding them to the previous sentence as a dependent clause makes it sound the same.

>However, the meaning behind Celestia's words became all too obvious as Luna realized just how much Equestria had changed in her absence.
-Try not to open sentences with “however”. It's like starting a sentence with “but”.
-”All too obvious” sounds... corny? Forced? Forced. In your current narrative voice that sounds like the narrator is speaking to the reader (due to the constant telling), you're elevating something—the obviousness to Luna of what Celestia meant—that doesn't really deserve elevation. It's minor, but there nonetheless.
-You've spent three paragraphs effectively saying what's going on inside Luna's head. That's a bit much, I'd say.

>So instead of ruling side-by-side with Celestia and she had before her exile, Luna instead spent most of her hours just trying to catch up on Equestrian history, which as it turned out, was no easy task.
-”Celestia and she had”? You mean “like she had”?
-”Just” is one of those words that should be used sparingly in narrative. I had a list of them that I can't remember at the moment, but “just” was at the top of it. You lose nothing by cutting it.
-Consider making this the first sentence of the next paragraph.

>“Foals spend years learning modern Equestrian history in school, and you've got over one thousand years of detailed economics, laws, society, and history to catch up on; you're not going to do it in one night.”
-It sounds like either of the two could have said this.

>She knew Celestia had meant them as words of encouragement, but every time Luna had misgivings about the slow progress of her studies Celestia found a way to repeat this mantra.
-”But” is used when you're trying to present a conflict between two ideas. I'm not seeing the conflict here, where the two ideas are “using them as words of encouragement” and “repeating the mantra”.
-Consider a comma after “Celestia”.
-Unless it's like “Love and Tolerance” or “Om mani padme hum” or something else that has philosophical/spiritual meaning, it's not really a mantra.

>Taking a pause from her pacing, she sat on her haunches and directed her eyes over all the books on loan from the royal library.
-“Directed her eyes over” makes it sound like she's looking at something above the books, not actually at the books. Consider “at” over “over”.

>the books covered every conceivable topic Luna had thought might be relevant to ruling Equestria.
-Capitalize “the”.

>And for each topic she had tried to track down records and studies spanning the whole one thousand years of her absence.
-The “and” makes the sentence look incomplete.
-Consider a comma after “topic”.

>Nearest her was an impressive tomb that stood out from the others: Feather Quill's A Written Catalog of Equestrian History.
-”Tome”, not “tomb”.
-Use italics for book titles. Underlining is best reserved for when italics are unavailable, or when you're doing MLA citations or something.

>Celestia had recommend it to Luna and she could see why. It was an impressive omnibus of Equestria's history, citing back to even before Celestia's war with Nightmare Moon.
-I don't think you used the word “cite” properly: http://machaut.uchicago.edu/?resource=Webster%27s&word=cite&use1913=on
-These two sentences can easily be combinable. You say that she could see why, and then you say why.
-You also call it impressive, effectively spoonfeeding your readers with opinions that they may not hold.

>And even though it was slow going, Luna was making some progress working through the book, tracing back through the centuries of Luna's missed time.
-Dem “And”s.
-”Through the centuries of Luna's missed time” sounds repetitive, given similar phrases in the sentences prior.

>Luna was pleased to see that modern Equestria appeared to be a land of true peace and prosperity.
-You just say that Equestria is a “land of true peace and prosperity”, which is infodumping.
>> No. 114509
And because you've been kept waiting long enough, this is the end of my line-by-lining. Hopefully, I've said enough for you to get an idea of what you can do to improve your story on a more detailed level. Everything else in this section will be just basic notes and responses.


>But as she sat looking towards the book, her focus waned and her eyes began to glaze over.
-Conjunctions at the beginning of sentences. Bluh.

-Reads kind of like “And then this happened.”

>After a minute of staring a hole through the book the princess shook her head, resigning herself to the fact that she wouldn't be making any meaningful progress on her studies.
-You break narrative voice here by using informal speech (staring a hole through the book) in what was pretty formal narrative.

>so that she could read the writing on the parchment.
-This is a really clear-cut example of unnecessary. There's really no reason for you to say this—it's like saying “Luna opened the door so that she could walk through it.”

>and after learning of the episode
-what episode?

-You're using “had verbed” more often than “verbed”. That means you're talking way too much about things that had already happened before what your narrative considers “the present”. That means you're infodumping.

>her quiet words ringing loudly in the silent room.
>quiet
>loudly
Wha?

>Although the castle was home to the princesses during the day, it was was also a central hub for the entire Equestrian government.
>was was
-Avoid saying “it was”. There are usually more elegant ways of getting facts across.

>Fall
-is not a proper noun.

>Her ears swiveled towards the ruckus, curious about the source of such raised emotions, but didn't slow her pace towards Celestia office all the same.
-Her ears are not curious, nor are they... Well, I suppose they are not-slowing her pace, but it sounds odd regardless.

>she nearly barreled into a three ponies
>a three

>Her advancement temporarily halted
-Don't use big words if they don't fit—i.e., “advancement” and “halted”.

>“Luna!” Celestia greeted. “I would have expected you to be asleep at this hour. What brings you all the way down here?” she asked as Luna turned around and stuck her head back out the door. She cast a nervous look left and right down the hallway before turning to face Celestia again. “Is something the matter?” Celestia asked.
-Don't use unnecessary speech tags. You have three in this paragraph alone.

>No matter how dire a situation or tense a room, her sister's small always had a calming effect on the ponies around her.
>small


>Tia
-God, I hate that nickname. It reeks of Fanon Luna. And I do hope your Luna doesn't go down that path—it doesn't sound much like Luna Eclipsed Luna so far. I suppose that's natural, since your Luna's not quite at that... age, I guess I would call it.

-You use the word “Luna” a lot. Past Sins had less instances of the word “Nyx”.

-You mention Luna's eyes and Luna's gaze a lot, too.

>Luna posture relaxed

>They all gave her a kind greeting, a small blush of embarrassment appearing on the face on the white-maned stallion that had first noticed Luna.
-Allow me to copy and paste something I'd written before regarding this structure of (subject) (verbed) (object), (object) (verbing modifier): http://fillerarc.tumblr.com/post/28620583027/ (tl;dr: it's usually bad)

>we could avoid–
-This—is an em dash. Use it when you want to show a line of thought being cut off. This is not a style choice; books that use en dashes use em dashes for this purpose as well.

>she had never seen Celestia betray any evidence
-Odd choice of verb, “betray”.

-Why is Celestia involved with a petty larceny case?

>twelve month imprisonment
-Well, that seems draconian. Considering how Gilda stole apples from Granny Smith without batting an eye... Oh. This is missing an [Alternate Universe] tag, isn't it?

>The sentence for this case is to be twelve months imprisonment
-Oh god. This is going to be about NLR/Tyrantlestia, isn't it? I'm just going to assume this is [AU], because my suspension of disbelief has been shattered like pots in a Zelda game.

>Luna surprised even herself when she audibly gasped in response to her sister's words.
-The focus should be on her gasp, not her surprise at the gasp.

-See “overall” for general comments about this trial scene.

-And the scene after that.

-Why are the castle dungeons right outside of the castle gardens?

-Lily Petal is dungeoned already? Well, that was fast.

>pony living in relative comfort
>dungeon
-Only one theft in three months? Not buying it.

>Worst of all, Luna realized, was that the mare's ribcage was clearly visible every time she breathed out.
-My ribcage is clearly visible... =(

>Her mane too was soaked with dried mud and was covered in tangles.
-So the guards are beating her?

>It's because of Celestia that I'm in here! It's because of that horrible pony that this had to happen.
-Questioning her rule? In North Korea, that's shooting squad material right there!

>but now she's sure to keep me in here for the rest of my life.
-If that's life imprisonment material in Equestria, then why in bloody hell would she shout it in the presence of a guard? If political dissent is that bad, she'd either know better and stay her tounge or not actually care about what happens next.

>It went against every instinct he had
-POV shift.

-You probably might want to bring the kid up earlier.

-Most of my objections to this scene are largely political, but Lily is not a sympathetic character to me. Lily's been shat on by life, and now she can't even feed her daughter (despite there being shelters). If the government puts her daughter in a better home, her daughter is both fed and no longer homeless. And Lily doesn't want that because it means not being with her all the time. Eh, I dunno.

-He's a pegasus. Why not pour water on the fire?

>This poor mare had had her entire life taken away from her, one loved one at a time. And in a final act of indifference Celestia had sentenced the mare to spend the next year of her life in this cell without so much as hearing her story.
-This sounds like you're trying to hammer in the sads.

-I'm kind of skimming this last conversation between Luna and Celestia, but it looks like it's coming out fairly nicely.

-Why does Celestia have a cabinet? Eye candy? Luna asks her that question, and Celestia never answers.

Overall:
-Comma placement. They go after adverbial phrases if those phrases begin sentences. Likewise, they also go between addresses and addressees, as well as between those two and any other part of the sentence. For example: “Twilight, put down that chair.” “Sorry, Mr. Davenport.” “No, I cannot.” “So glad you could join us, Mr. Anderson.” “Yes, Celestia.”
-Unnecessary verbosity. Look for where you could use less words to say the same thing with the same effect.
-Repetition of similar words or phrases.
-Prepositions and (as the SAT calls them) idioms. There's not much you can do here on your own besides learning them. Google “SAT idioms” or something—there's a reason one use is correct while the other is not. For example, “she was now glad for Celestia's suggestion”--compare that with “she was now happy for Celestia's suggestion”. If you're happy for something, then that something should be the object that's receiving your mirth, not the cause of it.
-Beginning sentences with conjunctions. All things in moderation.
-It sounds like you've got a case of thesaurus abuse.

-Bland writing. You use big words, but simple sentences. There is very little variation in your sentence structure, and you use the phrase “was” too often. This deadens your mood. There's nothing sad or tragic about this, and your first chapter should set the mood for everything else to come. (This is why some people use prologues for setup, as cheap as they are.) What you have sounds like “Luna eases her way back into society a la Luna vs. the Microwave”, not “Luna tries to upset Celestia's rule”.

-Unfocused paragraphs. The idea of a paragraph is to hold together a bunch of related ideas, but the sentences should flow into each other easily. Sure, you can spend six sentences talking about a room, but when you jump from Celestia looking at a paper to Luna looking around the room to Luna's prior experiences in the room to the room's interior design, you have sentence-to-sentence cohesion issues.

-Standardize your scene breaks.

-This Steel Magnate bit—I really don't know what to say, so I'll just be honest—I don't buy it. Even North Korea has trials before shipping off their criminals to labor camps (though they usually try to beat confessions out of suspects first). Even Jean Valjean had a trial before he got sentenced to seven years in prison for stealing a loaf of bread. And in neither case are/were Kim Jong-il/un or whoever-was-in-charge-of-France-at-the-time involved in petty criminal cases. They have countries to lead, not criminals to jail. I'm going to skip the fact that you're dealing with magical ponies here whose grand leader has her subjects send her friendship lessons and can overlook the complete destruction of a city by tennis ball locusts. (It's the destruction of an entire town. She had to find out eventually.) Celestia's tyranny you're setting up here looks ridiculously strawmanny—not because she's pretty much going “one year dungeon” a la Lemongrab, but because she's personally involved in a petty trial. If you're trying to make it seem like there's only one case of theft every three months and make it seem like this is a proportionate response in-universe, you need to at least hint that this isn't the Equestria we're familiar with, and Celestia had better have an intricate network of spies and informers to keep the citizens scared and in line. (And even then, it'd be a tough sell. If one pony is desperate enough to risk one year in prison over food, you can be certain that there's more where that came from, especially if they serve food in prison and the guards don't beat them or there's no fear of getting shanked in a shower stall. Fuck, if there's only one non-violent crime every three months, there's probably less violent crime than that. That'd mean prisons (if there are multiple prisons) are ultra-empty.)

-Getting rid of corrupt officials by replacing them with herself doesn't seem to do much, either. Those who are susceptible to corruption aren't going to stop being susceptible to corruption after they're no longer officials or whatnot. If twelve years prison is good enough of a deterrent for theft, whatever comes of corruption should be just as good.

-This is not Luna Eclipsed Luna. This is not Luna Eclipsed Luna at all, and it doesn't sound like it's going to turn into Luna Eclipsed Luna any time soon.

-So your Equestrian government has:
1. Twelve months of prison for theft.
2. One theft every three months.
3. One supreme leader that oversees all judicial cases as well as legislation, tax, etc.
4. Shelters that should be able to keep its citizens fed.
5. Child services that take children away from “unfit parents”.
6. Trials that aren't really trials because they want to cut down on wasted time.
7. Lots of red tape to prove that a single pony can be considered a “fit parent”.
8. No fire codes, apparently. Or fire departments.
9. No government subsidized healthcare, either, even if the leader thinks so.
10. A cabinet consisting of overglorified yesmen.
It sounds like of like North Korea, except North Korea fails everything besides propaganda.


Closing thoughts:
Consider using a space instead of or in addition to the indents. When I linked your story to another reviewer, he said he wasn't going to look at it because of text walling.

You're not a natural speaker of English, are you? It would explain a lot. If you're not, this is fairly impressive. If you are, well... I'm confused as to where these unnatural sounding bits are coming from, then.

Society... doesn't work that way. If crime is uncommon, you can't have that many prisoners. If crime is common, you can't have Celestia oversee everything. There's a conflict of possibilities here. If you haven't already, I suggest reading 1984 by George Orwell or Nothing to Envy by Barbara Demick. Considering all the parallels your Equestria has with North Korea, I recommend the latter.

If I ignore the societal inconsistencies and that this appears to be Tyrantlestia, this appears to be moving in a fairly interesting direction. However, the writing itself is not strong enough to make this seem like more than yet-another-Tyrantlestia story. (Disclaimer: the only Tyrantlestia story I've read is the story lampooning the other Tyrantlestia stories.) On top of that, that's a pretty big “if” up there. I have an easier time buying what's said on Fox News.

If you have any follow-up questions, you can just put them in-thread or contact me in the Training Grounds IRC channel at http://derpy.me/ttgirc (#ttg on irc.canternet.org).

My apologies if I sound incoherent or inconsistent at any point. Since I did this at something-or-other-AM and with a headache, that's a distinct possibility.
>> No. 114516
>>114465
Thanks for the review!

The things you brought up will definitely be looked on and you're review is sure to help me with my future writing.

Seems I still have a lot to do before these chapters are ready for publication.

"Just some small notes I took while commenting on this (I will expand my comments come the next section):

-Look to adjust Smart Cookie (AJ)’s dialect to better fit her accent (I’m pretty sure she kept it in that episode; if not, disregard)
-The content is a bit dry so far (needs more description and less “talking heads”), but it’s still reasonably engaging
-Don’t let thoughts and narration mesh
-Be attentive toward singular/plural agreement
-Reduce run-ons/unnecessarily verbose sentences/phrases" - you.

Ok, the reason Smart Cookie doesn't have AJ's accent is because she's not AJ. That episode, Hearth's Warming Eve, was a play while this is the actual historical meeting. You might also notice that this Puddinghead doesn't share Pinkie's cloudcuckooland-y behavior. Same reason.

That's also why the prologue might seem a bit dry, as you say. I intentionally avoid describing the characters' appearances because they don't look like the mane 6, how they look in the episode, that is. Yet, describing their actual appearance would mostly be confusing, so I decided to leave the appearance of the actual historical figures up to the reader's imagination.

I will take a look if this can't be improved though, or made clearer. And I'll try to fix your other points to the best of my ability.

"More notes:

Don’t mix narration with thoughts. When the text becomes much less formal, it’s typically the latter, which should be italicized/written in a way that clearly distinguishes the two types of prose.
Your dialogue is very strong, aside from punctuation errors; you may want to make a stronger focus on that within this story.
Cut down the number of shadow appearances or condense them. It gets very tedious having to read shadow after shadow prophecy.
I was under the guise that the filly Trixie was conjuring the shadows all that time.
Don’t hedge on whether something happened or not. It’s typically “it did or it didn’t,” and there is no middle ground.
You need more context leading into this whole scene. You’re dropping a plot bombshell without anything to fuel it. It feels like a foreshadowing dump more than something that’s cohesive with the plot.
Read more fics so that you get a better gist for punctuation, run-ons, and general phrasing. It will help you mold your own writing style and freshen up any dullness within passages.
Overall, an interesting premise that needs a bit of refinery. It has the potential to become a much better read if you’re willing to put in the effort to get it there." - you

I suppose this is my queue to admit I'm not a native English speaker. (hangs head in shame)

All your critic has been very helpful! I love your detailed analysis of each chapter.

If it's not too much, may I ask if you would be interested in reviewing any future chapters as well (please)?
>> No. 114523
>>114516
Darn it. Shouldn't write things on the internet directly after work. I probably didn't need to tell you that English isn't my first language. That post would've given me away anyhow.

Sorry for the incoherent mess that was my previous post. I wish this site had an edit button...

Still, I'd like to know if you would be interested in reviewing my future chapters (when they're done)?

Also:

>>114465

That image! Poor Twilight... it really wasn't her fault.
>> No. 114546
Tags: Normal (Darker towards the end of the story, I'd guess, but I don't know if it's enough to cancel the Normal tag. I'd argue it's not.)

Synopsis: Sometimes, the past is best left buried. However, sometimes it can also be dug up by the most unexpected means.

Fates will be determined and the unknown past revealed, all as Twilight Sparkle searches for the answer to the crucial question: Who is Knight?

Links:

Prologue: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1n6KD2LCOExeHFhq7ocEG6XBCKcCWm8jsbiyJxkkSZgI/edit

Chapter 1:https://docs.google.com/document/d/15yn7ueXwOa6hjMTUDpUyGjH5YjxkvrJ2HRuKNBNktvc/edit

Comments:

Well, here it is again. Casca, if you're not busy, I'd like you to take another look at this. Tell me if it's better this time around or not.

The prologue wasn't altered way too much, though I hopefully added some better details in it for readers, but I've certainly changed chapter 1 (it especially reads much, much different from about the middle to the end this time around).

Part of my problem was too many plot threads, so I've tightened the focus much more. I'm already going through the remaining chapters, throwing out useless or overplayed bits, and replacing it with what I hope is a simpler and enjoyable story. I kinda like the new direction you sent me in. It's much more in line with my original vision for the story.

Now, if you don't have any interest, please say so and let this be open game in that case.

(P.S. Also altered title and made a new synopsis. Let me know what you think.)
>> No. 114571
>>114436

Hi, Pup Tent-
I'd picked a chapter for you to look at, but have kind of gotten carried away editing (taking into account your, and the pre-reader's concerns). Let me get back to you tonight or in a couple of days. :)

Thanks again!
>> No. 114602
File 134404695871.jpg - (7.26KB , 225x300 , thumbnail_aspx.jpg )
114602
Review time with alexmagnet. Pro reviewer by day and masked vigilante by night. So pro in fact, that I skipped the prologue and went straight to chapter one. Because, screw context! I played Assassin's Creed! I know what I'm talking about! Desmond is best pony!

Pic is related due to my objections that I'll get to later.

First off, let me apologize in advance for my particular brand of humor and all the lame jokes I made in the comments. I didn't plan on doing the review line-by-line it just kinda happened. Soooo, whoops. Anyways let's get to my actual review.

Pros: I quite like the story, and despite the fact that the prologue is pretty much the same as the game I enjoyed it very much.

I also liked how you included game mechanics such as eagle vision and parkour but made them magic spells. That was kinda cool.

I also like Clover's characterization so far, even thought you changer her gender in the prologue.

Your actual writing isn't too bad either. I never felt the need to tear my hair out screaming "why can't I read this!" so that's good.


Cons:

Objection! You use colons and semi-colons like they're commas. You had like 3 colons in less than 200 words That's way too many colons. And the same thing goes for semi-colons. They are supposed to be used incredibly sparingly. In fact, you should rarely even find yourself pressing that key. I should also point out that you didn't even use them correctly.

The amount of comma splicing was absurd. Especially during the prologue and early parts of chapter one. I know how easy it is to do. I am a frequent offender myself and I constantly have to go back and edit the hell out of my commas. And another thing with your commas. Every single proper noun that somebody says is preceded by a comma. Why? Why would you do that?
>“Your hesitation says everything, Clover.”
You see that? That comma has no business being there. That's just the first example I found, there are many more.

Moving on. Your grammar, outside the comma splicing and overuse of colons and semi-colons, isn't too bad. You have some real awkward wording sometimes. But, only once or twice was it actually confusing enough to were I had to read the sentence multiple times to understand what was going on.

Some of your dialogue can be a little clunky as well.

Overall:

I'd say this is a decent retelling of an Assassin's Creed story with ponies added. Clearly you're going in a somewhat different direction than the source material because Clover already has a pair of apprentices. But, I get the feeling that Starswirl isn't entirely forthcoming with Clover. That old bastard is probably hiding something. Which reminds me of another old bastard who was the head of an assassin's guild.

So, I guess that's it for my review. It wasn't all that great, my review I mean, so sorry about that. First time I've ever really had to review anything, besides my friend's college essays. But that's different.. Anyways, I'm interested in seeing where the story goes and I'd like to keep reviewing stuff for you when you get new chapters. I imagine you'll probably want someone who doesn't suck though. Either way, I was overall fairly pleased with what I read and I wish you luck.

P.S.

I would suggest getting another person to review your story as well. Just to get another pair of eyes on it. Also, take everything I say with a grain of salt. Remember, I'm not the best writer around.
>> No. 114604
So, apparently I'm a huge idiot. I did not realize that in speech commas had to go before the addressee's name. I take back everything I said regarding that, and I apologize for being ignorant of basic comma rules. I suppose I'll go ahead and hang my reviewer hat up and just cry myself to sleep or something.


Still had a lot of comma splicing though, I think. Now I'm questioning myself on that too. Excuse me while I return to 6th grade English class.
>> No. 114607
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114607
>>114604

>So, apparently I'm a huge idiot. I did not realize that in speech commas had to go before the addressee's name. I take back everything I said regarding that, and I apologize for being ignorant of basic comma rules.

Well, it's a good thing you changed your mind. That particular problem comes up a lot in your own story.

>I am a frequent offender myself and I constantly have to go back and edit the hell out of my commas.

Hehe, your review is almost done and mentions a lot about commas. Looks like we have some work to do. Sit tight, while I finish up the rest of the review of your story. Muwahwahwahwah.
>> No. 114609
>>114604
Well, this is is the Training Grounds, for writers or reviewers, so don't sweat too much about it.
>> No. 114615
File 134405495625.jpg - (7.44KB , 300x225 , thumbnail_aspx.jpg )
114615
>>114607
yep, saw that one coming.

Look at me, classic pot calling the kettle black, or whatever. Crap...
>> No. 114617
File 134405614390.jpg - (8.59KB , 200x270 , z04870nfz32.jpg )
114617
>>114571
Sure thing. Just let me know when. I'll be watching the thread.
>> No. 114643
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114643
>>114604
Whoa! whoa, there. hold your humans.
This is the training grounds after all. the point is to get you into the reviewing game. The more experiences reviewers ought to help you out if you're new and apparently I ought to lurk in this thread more. Don't sweat it, you're new. You'll get it.
>> No. 114646
>>114119
>> No. 114654
Claiming work from last thread.
>>114028
Title: Grand Prix
Author: Arbarano
>> No. 114660
File 134407690992.jpg - (88.07KB , 1920x1080 , reading.jpg )
114660
>>114509
First of all, I want to express a sincere thank you for doing this review (especially since I perceive it was not the easiest review to get through). I think your comments are correct and warranted. I'll go through the specific comments/corrections in my own time (particularly grammatical issues, which I try to be a stickler for, but unfortunately one can't know what one doesn't know; I believe that is half the point of getting an outside reviewer), but I thought I'd respond to a few things immediately.

> Consider using a space instead of or in addition to the indents. When I linked your story to another reviewer, he said he wasn't going to look at it because of text walling.
Ack, this was the default formatting exported from my type-setter. Indentation and paragraph spacing is just a variable at the beginning I could have reset. I'll definitely change that for anything I post in the future.

> Good god, this is long.
I had certainly realized this. Even I was quite surprised at the length when I finished the first draft (and to think I did that first draft in one sitting). I think this mostly stems from the fact that it had been sitting in my head for an extended length of time, so I just had a lot of scenes already laid out in detail before I even started writing.

> this chapter can be broken up into two or more smaller chapters.
The intention was to change perspectives with each chapter break. The purpose of the story would be to show how the conflict effects each character. For example, the second chapter is written in Twilight's perspective, who stumbles into the conflict (which has implicitly grown in the time between the chapter breaks).

At any rate, the point about the length is taken.

> Your synopsis seems fairly dry
I definitely realized that after the initial posting and tried to take a second pass at it. An attempted revision is here >>112635. (Still not great perhaps, but at least an improvement, I think).

> This is not Luna Eclipsed Luna.
Yea... I'm not sure I have any defense to this one. I can't remember if I originally conceived this before I saw Luna Eclipsed (I'm relatively new here), or if I simply built her up differently in my head (I know it's a weak excuse, but one episode only gives you so much head-canon to start from). Either way I'm not sure how I would revise the chapter to capture her correctly and achieve the same premise. (Alas this probably just means my premise was flawed to begin with; more on that below).

> I'm confused as to where these unnatural sounding bits are coming from, then.
I think this probably stems from the fact that I haven't written anything but technical writing/documentation for the past 10 years, which tends to prefer unambiguous (and generally bland) writing with simple sentences. I certainly haven't written anything designed for entertainment value in that time. So I *tried* to break out of that (and be very glad you didn't see the first draft; I could barely make it through that one), but I'm willing to believe it came across (accurately) as writing by someone who hasn't written natural prose in years. I clearly have a ways to go.

> Repetition of similar words or phrases.
> It sounds like you've got a case of thesaurus abuse.
Well, I suppose I was trying to fix the former with a bit of the latter, but somehow wound up with the worst of both.

> If I ignore the societal inconsistencies and that this appears to be Tyrantlestia, this appears to be moving in a fairly interesting direction. However, the writing itself is not strong enough to make this seem like more than yet-another-Tyrantlestia story.
As I mentioned above, the intention was to see how the conflict would effect others, and do so in their own perspectives. To do so, I wanted to 1) setup a division which was clearly polarizing, but 2) try not to define either side as the "bad guy." However, I think you've identified that it was both insufficiently considered and poorly executed.


While I can certainly improve (a lot) on the points you've laid out, I'm not particularly convinced I have the skill to retell this premise in a way that's substantially more believable. All things considered, I think this was just too ambitious as a first writing attempt (did I mention it's been a decade since I last wrote fiction?). At the same time, it was also a bit inevitable that I would attempt it (there's something about these ponies that sparks an artistic streak I didn't even know I had). I'll try to learn from the things you've pointed out and fix what I've got so far, but I think after that I'll table this story for now and start anew with a shorter one-shot (probably a much better way to gain some footing).

Again, thank you VERY much for the review. It is very much appreciated, and I'm going to make a sincere effort to learn from it.
>> No. 114701
From over here in the previous thread: http://www.ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/110790.html#111929

Thank you very much! You've been most helpful ^^

This guy was quite awesome, incredibly helpful feedback and stuck around to chat on gdocs a couple times, and through the comments.
>> No. 114719
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114719
It's only just occured to me that I didn't post an end to the review for >>108802 by Grayshift. For the record, I completed the review in doc.

Apologies to thread maintainers for my incompetence, and also to Grayshift—just in case you were expecting anything more from me.

I'll claim >>113641 as penance for my stupidity. I promise I'll post it here this time.
>> No. 114721
>Nothing is Scarier by DuncanR (>>114018) submitted 07/29/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Bronius Maximus on 07/30/2012 (>>114026)

Just a note: I'm pretty sure I acknowledged this review.
http://www.ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/110790.html#i114054
>> No. 114735
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114735
>>114602 Thank you for taking the time to review this, your review was informative and it let me know that the points of the story I wanted to make intriguing and stand out, well, stood out. I'll be sure to remove the semicolons, I've been meaning to anyway. Besides that I totally think Clover the Clever is a dude.

>>114604 And you are not an idiot. You just got a certain grammar mechanic mixed up, no big deal. Besides, I didn't ask you to edit for me, I asked you to review and you did a fine job of that. The editing was a just a cherry on the top. Don't beat yourself up about it.
>> No. 114749
File 134411688946.jpg - (6.44KB , 148x300 , thumbnail_aspx.jpg )
114749
>>114735
>Besides that I totally think Clover the Clever is a dude.

Okay. I guess. Well, at least keep his/her gender consistent. In the prologue you referred to him/her as 'he' and then in chapter one as 'she'. I was fairly confused and I thought you were talking about Starswirl and not Clover at some points.

Also, Clover is totally a girl's name. Just sayin'.

>Don't beat yourself up about it.

Too late. I've already challenged myself to a one-on-one death match in The Octagon. Don't worry though. I'm a real lightweight. I'm sure I can take me.

It was a pleasure reviewing for you.

Now, I just have to wait for anon's review of my story. I'm scared and excited at the same time.


(it's weird how much fan art there is of Franziska as a baby)
>> No. 114751
File 134411716386.jpg - (16.01KB , 256x256 , My severed head.jpg )
114751
Synopsis: "Future Wonderbolt, coolness incarnate, and all-around awesome. Is it any surprise that everypony wants a piece of Rainbow Dash?

Not that she wants anypony to take a piece, mind you. All she wants to do is live her life. That's something she finds relatively hard to do when everypony she meets falls in love with her on sight, though."

Inspired by the perception that RD has been shipped with everyone, I made everyone want to be shipped with her. Hilarity (supposedly) ensues, as RD tries to have a somewhat normal life whilst avoiding anyone who might try to seduce her.

Tags: [Comedy]

Word count: 6703

Chapters: All three currently uploaded (and if anyone wants to volunteer to at least glance over however many more chapters I can do of this when I write them, feel free. You will be rewarded with my eternal gratitude and love and a packet of peanut M&Ms).

Link to story: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/39790/Everypony-Loves-Rainbow

Comments: Equestria Daily pre-reader said:

"Author, I grinned like a fool all through reading this, but I can't recommend it for posting just yet.
Look for errors in the following areas:
•Awkward shifts to second person
•Semicolon use
•Hyphen/dash use
•Ellipsis use
The grammar remains the only thing that's stopping this. This is the story's second strike out of a possible three."

I tried to solve these problems (thus the two strikes), but I don't think I'm a particularly good self-editor, so I thought I'd try consulting some actual professionals. I’d love some help fixing these niggling issues of mine. Though, obviously, any additional help that can be thrown in would be immensely appreciated.
>> No. 114774
File 134412549840.png - (2.20MB , 900x1350 , 1335186546586.png )
114774
34,302 words total means I’m gonna be posting this piecemeal. Here’s my thoughts on the first ten-thousand:

General:

This doesn’t read like a journal or memoir. I think that’s a pretty important thing to tell you right off the bat. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy it or that it ruined the atmosphere. Right now however, I want to talk about stuff like this:

>I could see it glisten in the weak light of the sun behind the clouds. Wait. Glisten?
>As I did so, a dim light fell on my eyelids.

These sentences have no business being in a journal, and I’m very much taking your story as being styled as one. Given your opening, I’d expect this to read less like Twilight’s narrating it to me and more like she’s recording her memories. You want to reduce the ‘stream of consciousness’ style you’ve got going on: it jars horribly with the passages that are done in the journalistic style.

As for the atmosphere, you nailed it perfectly. Theirs a slow, gathering build to the tension and darkness: just the right feel for a Lovecraftian horror. So much so that, at times, it stops feeling like a MLP fanfic. You may want to watch that. Your inclusion/adaptation of canon works in interesting ways: I’m looking forwards to seeing where you take it.

There are other, minor things as well. Stuff like this,

>I did not yet regret obtaining the Volumes.

Make no sense when, after Twilight tells us that her journal’s caught up with current events, there’s been no hints that she regrets having the Volumes. Abandoned plot point, perhaps?

Or it might just be the slightly OOC nature of your Twilight. I think the point when I cottoned on to her acting highly out of the ordinary was when she decided to create life from scratch without a single qualm in the world. And whilst we’re on that, talk about jumping in at the deep-end, author. I know you mentioned/established that Twilight was unstable, but I still think that’s a leap too far. Well, that and her just casually burning a timber-wolf’s body. That’s... well, that’s psychopathic.

Another minor things is this:

>Like something had chased him… I continued my investigation and found some really scary tracks and uprooted trees… I think something big moved in from the heart of the forest… I’d like your help in chasing it off. If you’re able.”

Way too many ellipsis in there. All the emphasis just vanishes.

> When I asked her what she was doing she told me in a roundabout sort of way that she was building home-made fireworks. When I asked her why she needed the fireworks, she told me they were probably for the New Year celebration.

Repetitive sentence structure here. I’m not quite sure if it’s deliberate, but that thumb sure looks sore.

Tense:

I can see what the pre-reader meant. You’re tense is... erratic. Again, it doesn’t read like Twilight writing a journal. If anything, it’s Twilight telling a story. And that leads to tense issues, for example:

> However, over the course of the past few months, I had noticed that Equestria is changing. I had decided to document this process and record my thoughts, for future reference.

Your tense here really confuses me. Is Twi writing a prelude to her journal, after she’s finished it, or starting said journal off? Your choice of tense implies the former, but context/what I’d expect suggest the latter.

If she’s starting it off, use have instead of had in both cases here. If she’s adding a note towards the front of a completed journal, make that a lot clearer.

>A gentle breeze wafted through Ponyville.

This is another confusing point. We’re just entering a paragraph and then, out of nowhere, you jump into a description that’s completely out of place for a journal. ‘Was wafting’ clears some of that up.

Although to be completely honest, it still feels out of place. The preceding sentence mentions that Twilight understands why Celestia likes autumn/fall. I’d expect the sentence after that to contain a reason why Twilight understands it.

Commas:

I noticed a fair few comma problems, mainly in the earlier chapters. In later ones you have an overt preference for periods/full stops. Not that there’s anything exactly wrong with that, but, at times, it can break up the flow. As for the commas:

>scrolls and books lined the walls and shelves dividing the floor like some maze.

You need one after shelves here, otherwise it can be read as “scrolls and books lined the walls, and shelves dividing the floor...” which clearly makes no sense.

>I was stocking up on a certain something, myself.

I can’t classify what the exact error is here, but it reads to me like Twilight’s stocking up on Twilight. I’d consider revising it.

>I lost myself in the building for hours on end reading various treatises and making the most of my time there.

Comma could come after building or end here, depending on where you want to attach the ‘for hours on end’ part. I’d personally go with after end.

Quotations:

Here’s two mistakes I noticed, though there’s probably a few more:

> we’re meet’n there. “
>“S-sorry. Applejack, maybe you should get some rope while we’re here.

And the other thing: how exactly is Twilight remembering what her friends are saying so well? We know she’s writing after the event (quite a while after) so quotes near ad verbatim are... surprising, especially when given without explanation.

Random:

>I stumbled quietly off to the side so I could vomit. The rest of the ponies waited patiently until I was finished.
>The days went on, as they are wont to do.

These are parts which... well, broke me away from the atmosphere and mood of the fic by making me giggle. I'm guessing that wasn't your intention. Either way, they completely killed the mood. I’d watch out for stuff like this.

Anyway, I’ll try and get the next section in by tomorrow.
>> No. 114803
File 134413396270.png - (264.29KB , 535x540 , 134394999201.png )
114803
Sorry for the wait, I’ll spare you my list of excuses as to why this took so long.
I left some comments in the doc. There would be a lot more but I’ve run myself into the ground this weekend, and am not very up to par at the moment.

Okay, this is quite a mess you’ve got here.

First of all, I’m wondering if you even looked this over after you finished typing it. There’s a lot of missing words, and other obvious errors that could be easily fixed.

Your phrasing is all whack! I can’t even count the number of lines in there that sound like a pair of unmeshed gears.

You’re also very telly. More than half the story is trying to tell the reader exactly what they should be thinking, rather than leading them there.

Your emotional moments are very dry, and the rest of it… is also very dry. The whole thing is a dried cracked desert.

The characters don’t make a lick of sense, and you never explained how they supposedly ‘absorbed’ Pinkie Pie.
>“That is without a doubt the single most ridiculous thing that I have ever heard,” he said.
Couldn’t have put it better myself.

I can’t really say I enjoyed this one. It actually nearly bored me to death, and I had to put it down at least four times.

This is nowhere near ready for EQD. You’re going to have to do some pretty serious tweaking before you even think about resubmitting it to them.
>> No. 114808
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114808
>>114751
Uhh... are you actually going to mail peanut M&Ms to reviewers?
>> No. 114810
>>114774

Alrighty, thanks for your help. I was actually beginning to wonder if 30k was too much for you guys, I know I'd be hard pressed to review something that long. But you're doing a wonderful job, and you have my admiration. Some of these things did occur to me while I was writing, but I didn't bother to fix 'em... Now I'm paying for it with some considerable editing down the line.

I gotta say though, the overused ellipsis was a conscious decision. It's Fluttershy's dialogue, and she's not one for emphasis. If you still think it subtracts from the work, I'll gladly revise it.

I think that everything else was spot-on. I'll be making these changes once you've finished looking through the story. Just so that if you find something in the later chapters that clashes with the earlier ones, I don't have to edit twice.

Thanks again! I look forward to hearing more of your feedback. Cheers~.
>> No. 114825
File 134413835520.jpg - (6.56KB , 222x227 , imagesCARYZAFS.jpg )
114825
I'm afraid this story needs huge amount of work and rewriting. It's littered with basic grammar and tense errors, so much to the point of making the story painful to read. Let me pull out some examples.

>>He was still warm, but I couldn’t knew if he was alive

>> The human’s back was already barely visible. Fixating on it, I made myself a target. I need to follow that back for half of hour.

And punctuation issues...

>>If she had something to say about a mess on my ‘workplace’, - the cup was lying on its side, with the fork and the spoon on top of it, and all that was between the two plates - she kept it to herself.


And sentence fragments...

>> Layer of ice was melting.

>> Heroine and her team were growing stronger, looking more and more powerful.


I'm not sure why you are sending this for a review when you haven't even named your characters.

>> I knew for sure %managername% won’t show up for another four hours.

>>%cookname%, our family’s old cook, once again bested himself and made something spectacular

Many of these errors would be pointed out by Microsoft word or other similar programs, so you could write out your drafts on that instead.

There are a few plot holes and logical gaps around. Like how the character knew what a ‘human’ was and how he trusted the human without any hesitation. You also linger too long on the character’s thoughts, sometimes stating the obvious or repeating information to the reader. I don’t see how the title is linked to the story too.

I do see a few good points from your story though. The plot sounds promising, at least till the red line. And you seem to be quite comfortable writing with the first person perspective.

Oh yes, one final point I want to make. Get rid of those massive pictures in the middle of your writing. It’s annoying, it breaks the flow of the story, and it restricts imagination. It shows that your writing isn’t good enough, so you resorted to using pictures to help your description. I can tolerate hyperlinks to music pieces, but having a big, colourful image shoved in front of my face is just too much. It feels a bit like reading one of those picture books for preschoolers, actually.

That’s about all for now. Correct all those errors I’ve pointed out in the document, download the document into Microsoft word and correct all those OTHER errors which I missed, and then have a thorough look at everything before sending it to an editor.
>> No. 114827
>>114825
One thing, my dear friend, have you considered that the lack of names, and the usage of symbols might be done for effect due to the disconnect which the main character has with the rest of the people around her?

Carry on.
>> No. 114833
>>114827
Thanks for that tip. I had a good look at the story but I don't think that's what the author is trying to do.

It's being used in dialogue as well. That can't be right...

>>“I’m glad to see everything is fine. You don’t want to cause your old %managername% any problems, don’t you?”
>> No. 114834
File 134414193112.png - (50.15KB , 400x408 , vsredglasses.png )
114834
>>114516

Yeah, that's my bad there; I didn't remember the episode in its entirety, so I wasn't sure about the accents.

And of course, I can continue to review this for you when you have new material for me. Message me on FimFiction, where I have the same name as here.

Also, Tridus, I'm still working on my review for you, so sit tight.
>> No. 114842
>>114810

Whoops, forgot the subject. The 'Review Acknowledged' thing. Is that a requirement? Regardless. There we go.
>> No. 114856
>>114751
Well, since you need a very specific kind of help...
I'm a huge stickler for grammar and one of the most experienced reviewers of the regulars. I can get your story scrubbed of all mechanical problems. However, my schedule is booked solid for a while. I can get to it around the 14th. If that's not too long a wait for you, let me know, and I'll claim it.

Also, please fill out the submission form (link at the top under "For writers") so your story will be in our queue.
>> No. 114871
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114871
>>114808
Well, you'd have to be willing to give me your postal address, and they might be a bit crushed up by the time they get delivered... but the offer stands.
>> No. 114872
>>114856
Thank you very much for the offer, that would be wonderful.
>> No. 114874
File 134415575919.jpg - (9.18KB , 205x246 , carefree.jpg )
114874
>>114871
Someone give this good man a claim already! [/jk]

>>114546
I'm wary as to how quickly you've come back, but it's nice to be proven wrong. Claimed for the record, though be informed that I won't be able to get to it until I-don't-know-when. Also, please disable comments so that it forces me to do a read-through instead (commenting is a twitch reaction for me). I can get a better grasp of the thing as a whole that way, to see how it's come along.
>> No. 114875
>>114810
Thanks for the feedback. As for the ellipsis thing, I'd still consider revising it. Even if we discard the loss of emphasis, it could still break a reader's immersion pretty badly. Any part where the story obviously feels like a story does that. Using that many ellipses in that small of a space counts as one of them. (For me, at least.)

>>114842
I haven't finished the review yet, so I don't think you need to acknowledge it. Thanks anyway, though: you're more awake than I was.
>> No. 114889
>>114834

Roger that, thanks a ton for working on it. :)
>> No. 114892
Thanks for time spent there, hope it wasn't too horrible.

Now,about that comment

>It takes a while to be able to write well. You can start by having a look at several writing guides...

Thing is, it seems not working for me. I've studied a plenty of guides, and just the time spent on writing and rewriting is not helping at all. I've been at it for more than a year, with breaks here and there Still just cant determine when its good and and when it isnt. Also how do i gramar. Anyways, since I see I wasn't able to improve in the slightest for yet another time, I'm out of ideas and taking another break. for another year, yep

And to clear things out:
About the plot holes; these two pieces of text are not supposed to be one after another, I just wanted a review for them specifically.
And about the names, there is no any effect meant or something. Just the placeholders. I was planning a certain thing with the names, wanted to make some sort of a pattern for future plot use, but couldn't get to it before deciding on another thing, which was still somewhere very low on my priority list. Something like that.
>> No. 114893
>>114892
If you're feeling frustrated about your writing not improving, read more books. Take a look at the most downloaded/popular things on http://www.gutenberg.org/ or maybe visit your local library. If you must pony, check out http://www.ponyfictionvault.net/ or the top-rated fics on http://onemansponyramblings.blogspot.com/p/6-star-reviews-by-star-rating.html

Read a lot of different books and you'll slowly internalise the way practised authors express things. A year of writing isn't really that long (I'm still wet behind the ears after ~5), so it's not like you're slow or anything. Your brain just needs time to absorb writing in its many facets.

As for grammar, well, a lot of that will sort itself out as you read more. Not all of it, but that's why we have Google and TTG.

This is general advice to everyone and anyone, by the way. The written word is beautiful and can tell great, in-depth stories that just don't work in any other medium. That, and no author can write in a vacuum. If you're serious about writing, you need to read.
>> No. 114904
Finally! This post's mostly formality, I'll be keeping up with the author whenever he returns from being MIA.

My review's in gdocs for the author to browse and tweak at his leisure. Overall I did enjoy the fic, seems like there were one or two somewhat consistent grammatical mistakes, though that's no biggie. I'd really love to see more depth to these characters, both personality-wise and more depth to the situations.

As they are right now, it feels like I'm reading Dragon Ball Ponies. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, just adding that depth would eliminate that 'old hat' feel to the stereotypical anime feel it has. (And it would help eliminate the "Perfect Character" feeling that Lucario has. I'm not going to say the overused term for it, lol)
>> No. 114905
>>114209

You should probably know that you're not in the spreadsheet. Did you submit to the queue via the form?
>> No. 114908
>>114874

Thank you, I look forward to it as usual. Comments have been disabled.

To address your concern about this being put back up again so soon: this newer version was being thought of and roughly planned about half-way through your earlier review.

I refrained from making the changes as soon as I thought of them, because many of them were major and I felt would affect the very structure of the story. It felt rude to me to simply scrap everything and really mess with this while you were still working. It's like asking someone to look at your drawing, and start erasing it halfway through. They can't tell you the good points to keep from the last one, or what was wrong with the last one, if you just start monkeying around with it before they're finished thinking about it. So, I wanted to wait until you were done, made sure we'd found whatever issues were really plaguing me, and then I'd go through and give this a kick in the teeth.

What you told me about one of my characters especially disturbed me, on so, so many levels. That wasn't what that character should have become, and it's embarrassing that I let them slip so far from their very identity and purpose for the sake of being "big and grand".

They're strong, that hasn't changed, but that isn't supposed to be their commanding quality. I pushed them too hard, trying to establish some things too early and make that character as imposing and dangerous as possible at the expense of everything else. The more I look at the way my story reads in its now older form, the more I find that I was pushing things into levels of stupid beyond acceptable.

Most everything about this story is about to change, including its overall length. I still believe I have a good story buried under here somewhere, but I'm finding it's buried under entire chapters of moronic, useless self-pandering and poorly thought-out actions. Oh, I always had a reason, but now I can see they were excuses so I could enjoy my character. I know them, no one else does, and that was one of the biggest problems.

I won't be surprised if this whole thing gets at least another 10000+ words shorter.

So, I hope this reads a little better. It might have some flaws again, but I tried to keep your review in mind as I worked it over. I believe I've chained in what were supremely over-the-top moments, so now they're hopefully interesting without being stupid and pointless.

I hope you enjoy?

Please?
>> No. 114917
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114917
>>114871
Seeing as how you have two strikes already, I guess it wouldn't hurt for you to get two reviews (Unless Pascoite objects.) I'll start on it after I finish my write off entry.

And I'm definitely willing to review the later chapters for you, as well.
>> No. 114930
>>114917
Doesn't bother me to have another reviewer, particularly since it's a FiMFiction link.

Still not in the spreadsheet, though. Author, please fill out the submission form.
>> No. 114942
File 134419453593.jpg - (16.01KB , 256x256 , My severed head.jpg )
114942
>>114930
Huh, could've sworn i'd put it there yesterday...

No matter; I've got access to a fully-functioning computer now (for the first time today), so I'll do it immediately.
>> No. 114946
.>>114930

Well this is odd. According to my monitor, it's now in the queue. Three times.

I... I have no idea what's happening. Is this just me? Can anyone else see this, or do I have yet another complaint to send off to BT in the hope that I can shift the blame of yet another problem to them?
>> No. 114950
>>114751
Alright, it's in the spreadsheet. Claimed.
>> No. 114958
>>114834
Great!

Thanks, I'll do that!
>> No. 114961
Title: Homework is for Home

Author: Moi

Tags: Normal, Would-be-Slice-of-Life-if-the-Submission-Form-Had-That-Option

Synopsis: In a kindergarten for unicorns in Canterlot, a young blue filly called Spark participates in an average school day. After reading repetitive sentences in a textbook, however, a subject is taught that may make the school day not so average. Homework is meant to be done at home, after all.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/18caTjPOW9XxvcoLnX715DcQPtNSk_1h37HM2c--wZ9o/edit

Comments:
Nothing, really. I'm mainly concerned that I have a lot of telling.

Thanks!
>> No. 114965
File 134420423800.png - (88.41KB , 367x345 , Bon Bon131499708855.png )
114965
>Would-be-Slice-of-Life-if-the-Submission-Form-Had-That-Option
Heh, I misread this and thought you had submitted a story with a taboo subject matter.

Two things: One, Use the submission form. Two, Double space your fic. Right now, It looks like a wall of text.
>> No. 114975
Tags: [sad][slice of life] [romance][tragedy]
Synopsis: The thing about loyalty… the thing about loyalty is sometimes you don’t know where your loyalties lie.
Have I always been loyal to my friends… no. There are things that they didn’t know about me. All these things of my past have been kept from everypony.. I had a past full of disgrace and shame, and loneliness. Things that I wish had never happened. Only a few ponies knew these secrets ...
Links:
Introduction: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/39635/1/Hope-in-the-Storm/Introduction%3A-Loyalty
Chapter 1: A miracle http://www.fimfiction.net/story/39635/2
Chapter 2: Off the Streets http://www.fimfiction.net/story/39635/3
Chapter 3: The Storm Begins http://www.fimfiction.net/story/39635/4
Chapter 4: Goodbye Canterlot http://www.fimfiction.net/story/39635/5
Chapter 5: Foal Trouble http://www.fimfiction.net/story/39635/6
EqD review: http://www.fimfiction.net/blog/53541
Comments/requests:
I have found, and done away with the obvious mistakes made and acknowledged in the EqD review, now I’m looking for specifics. I want any specific mistakes you can find, of any of the mentioned errors in their review, as well as anything that doesn’t sit right, or needs to be changed. Pre-reader Seattle of EqD recommended I request Dublio for evaluation.
>> No. 114980
>>114965
Huh. I guess it does kinda sound like that. Oops.

I didn't think of double spacing it. I guess now it looks less scary :P Thank you!

Also, I did submit a submission form. Did it not show up or did I do something wrong?If so, I'll make a new one as soon as I can.
>> No. 114991
>>114892
I think you should focus on the basics first, like grammar and sentence structures for example. Reading helps, but it takes quite a long time.

I'll keep an eye on your story for a while and help out where I can. Don't feel disheartened! Hardly anyone starts off as a good writer. :)
>> No. 115060
>>114975

Sure thing. I'll claim this story. :D
>> No. 115098
>>114617

Hi, Pup Tent-

I've finished up a pretty intensive round of re-writes, edits, and proofreads to chapter 4 (Harnessing Unbridled Power [IN EDIT]). If you wouldn't mind giving that one a read (down to where it says "---/reviewer stop here/---", I would really appreciate it. I think you can work out the context from reading, but if there's any confusion, let me know (or maybe skim the chapter before). Should I fill out a proper review form for it?

Link to the story on FIMFiction: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/33137/Rocket-Powered-Pony

Thanks again!
>> No. 115127
>>98837

After months of procrastina- I mean, editting, I'm finallly pleased enough with its state to get a final review. I think I'd like just one more quick skim before I actually move on to the next chapter.

Title: Fluttershy’s Shadow
Chapter: Two
Author: Broken Logic
E-mail: [email protected]
Tags: [shipping/romance][comedy]
Synopsis: Fluttershy has just recieved a bouquet of flowers from none other than her shadow. Or so she thinks. Twilight Sparkle, always the skeptical pony, heads out to investigate and eventually all her friends get involved with miscellaneous schemes of finding who the mysterious sender is. And things were already busy enough with Nightmare Night only a few nights away.

Links:
Google Docs: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ylOSxfH9XWOEvx8Xn6gcpGmpXbUigB_InYREIbPLlvc/edit
FimFiction:http://www.fimfiction.net/story/10932/Fluttershy%27s-Shadow

Comments: As per usual, I'd appreciate it if Pascoite took this back up. But its probably been so long that he doesn't remember it. Thus, I'd be thankful for anyone's input.
>> No. 115152
>>115127
Sure, if you don't mind a substantial wait. It'll be about a week and a half before I can start on it.
>> No. 115154
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115154
>>115098
Sure thing! I'll get to it soon as I can.

Now I get to see what lengths Whirlie Gears will go to artificial maple syrup, tinfoil, cardboard wings and a telephone booth to get off the ground.
>> No. 115171
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115171
Title: The Twilight Hours
Tags: Romance Slice of Life
Word Count: 3866
Synopsis: Applejack's got a secret she'd kept hidden for many years. She's become a master of deception in regards to it. Nopony would ever have guessed what she and Twilight were doing in the library late at night, once Spike had gone to sleep. That is, until a jealous Rainbow Dash decided it was her business to find out just what in the hay was going on.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1TacOT75S-vD8N_Nb7HlyJrrd7Q6uirqTdUmfwn5E4RY/edit

Notes: As of right now, it is a multi chapter fic, but I'd like an opinion on whether or not I should just write this as a oneshot or as a multi-chap. As well as the normal reviewing stuff. Thanks to whoever claims!
>> No. 115174
File 134431456513.jpg - (396.64KB , 880x884 , applejack_and_big_mac_vs_the_cretan_bull_final_by_bakuel-d4gsovv.jpg )
115174
I'll go ahead and claim >>114961.
Your review will be done in a day or two!
>> No. 115180
File 134431776491.png - (60.77KB , 328x462 , fsnotwhatitlookslike.png )
115180
>>114889
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/55001004/Twilight%20Alone%2C%20Chapter%201.docx

Tridus!
Okay, so I reviewed only the first chapter at this point because a lot of the stuff that needs revision is done again in the second chapter. It would not be beneficial for either of us for me to review something that I know you will be able to make much better on your own. I want you to take a bit of time to edit both chapters for this issues; give me back the second chapter (and the first if you like) once you do so. I recommend reading some more literature (pony or not) so that you get a better gist for grammar and writing mechanics. Also, be sure to look up general punctuation information. I like the intentions of the plot and the dialogue you have going, but I've pointed out what is currently in need of improvement.
>> No. 115181
File 134432017728.png - (823.80KB , 1890x1417 , just_happy_trixie_vector____by_theponydream-d4tsfdv.png )
115181
>>114961
How about we get this done today?

Alright, I like to start with the good:

CHARACTERIZATION:
For the most part, Twilight was her usual self, concerned with grades and being liked by her teachers. The OC of yours I couldn't really comment on, since it was of your own creation. My notes on some of Twilight's behavior I found off putting are in the google doc, but other than that, it wasn't bad.

GRAMMAR AND PUNCTUATION:
Overall, this was your best area. Grammar and dialogue punctuation were spot on, and I don't think I found a single error in that regard.

So from a technical standpoint, it was quite good. Now let's move on to the not so good:

PLOT: overall, the plot was a bit dry. When I say that, I mean, I've never wondered why Twilight is purple. For the most part, most fans accept that she was born that color. Obviously, fics don't have to conform to canon, but the fact I can't see anyone asking themselves "Why is Twilight purple?" may detract from your audience. As in, not many will come away from this fic saying "I'm glad I read that, and that theory is totally realistic." is it plausible? I suppose, but it is a bit farfetched.

SVT (Show vs Tell): There were a few parts where you could have been a bit more descriptive, but there were only about two or three sections where this could be applied. Other than that, this was not a bad fic, but I feel the plot and main idea may lose a few readers.

Anyway, I hope some of this helped you!
>> No. 115195
File 134432751773.jpg - (70.44KB , 250x370 , sadcadance.jpg )
115195
Tags: Sad, Romance

Synopsis: I'll tell you a story. It's a tale about a unicorn with wings. I'll tell you about the Princess that kept her alive, the filly that taught her to care, and the stallion she loved. This is her story... it's my story.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1L-YDdQXu-NGrZZWzXeQU3GT5MeYb3GMjghxTAcDIGmY/edit

Comments: Issues with comma splices, word repetition, passive voice, tautological issues
>> No. 115205
>>115180

Thanks Halcyon! :)

That is a daunting list of comments. :( It'll take me some time to go through it all. Looking through them all this morning there's two questions that pop up immediately.

1) What's "narration/thought mesh" mean?
2) You've suggested in a couple of places that I need more background from the wedding itself, but wouldn't anybody reading it already know all of that? Isn't it just repetitive to explain it again? Not saying you're wrong on this, just trying to understand why I'd want to do it.

Thanks again.
>> No. 115225
>>115181
Thank you so much for looking over this... wow, that was fast!

I did think about how bronies accept the fact about how she was born purple, so I was trying to go for, "Hey, wow, I didn't think of that." I guess it might be a little unappealing if somepony doesn't like to think of her being blue. I was told that it is a love-it-or-hate it idea, so I guess I hoping for the best! It is a little far-fetched... but aren't most fanfics anyway? :D

Phew, no SVT :P I tried to be as "show-ey" as possible, because in a previous fic I've had a lot of trouble with that.

Thanks again!
>> No. 115227
File 134435907036.png - (652.48KB , 768x1024 , ppreal.png )
115227
>>115205

1. You're letting what should be unbiased statements become less formal and slanted with the mindset of Twilight. Wherever I pointed out those instances, I meant that the phrase or sentence should be changed so that it's either actual thoughts of Twilight or regular narration of an action or something.
2. Yes, anyone who watched the episode would be familiar with how Twilight had to stand alone against the fake Cadance. However, since this is a story, you're writing everything that takes place after, which is not established, and you need to follow up with what could have happened in the two weeks after the wedding. There could have been a lot that soured Twilight Sparkle in that period of time as well.
>> No. 115234
>>114803
Many thanks for taking your time with it, Minjask. I will honour your dedication by correcting the mistakes you pointed out. Other than that, I probably won't work this story any more. I hoped I could get the feeling for it as I progressed, but I'm into chapter three and still nothing.
>> No. 115250
File 134437191935.png - (369.02KB , 450x345 , 100PercentCool.png )
115250
>>114028

Right, sorry for the delay there. Comments are in doc.

You have a great deal of mechanical errors in there mate, and not just the kind limited to grammar issues. You have a serious issue with awkward phrasing and superfluous narration that really hampers reader immersion. You need to learn to streamline things to keep up a consistent pacing and flow.
Go over your work, and ask yourself two questions for every passage:
1) Does this part move the plot along?
2) Does this part give insight to the characterization?
If you can't answer yes to either question, then odds are your looking at a section that either needs to be cut or heavily streamlined.

Cheers mate, keep writing.
>> No. 115252
[Title] A Bit of Riddles, A Riddle of Bits
[Name] Karach
[Email] [email protected]
[Tags] Normal
[Synopsis] Twilight Sparkle goes on another rampage when Cutie Mark Crusaders ask her a mathematical riddle she can't solve. As usual, it's up to her friends to try to stop her before her magic frenzy causes serious damage. But... among her friends, is there anypony more skilled at math who could hope to solve a riddle even Twilight has trouble with?
[Links] https://docs.google.com/document/d/1syuQZiuaaO5ZHMuL5wx4j2Dt5esUctyJvrB-7LDp7Gw/edit
or
http://www.fimfiction.net/story/32714/A-Bit-of-Riddles%2C-A-Riddle-of-Bits
[Chapters] One-shot
[Comments] I won't lie here--this story is short and simple with no deeper meaning behind it. :) I would very much appreciate it, however, if anyone decided to review it, and point out any flaws in it that could help me write better in the future.
As a personal request of mine, I would like to ask the reviewer to be absolutely ruthless when it comes to grammar. Whether it's a spliced comma, incorrect tense, wrong spelling or some other mistake I overlooked, I'd like to be bashed with metal baseball bat over the head for it. ;)
Thank you in advance for taking your time to review the story.
>> No. 115253
>>114810

Aquillo's internet is down, and it won't be back up for another few days. Because of this, the rest of his review will be delayed. If you need to get in contact with him, let me know, and I'll make sure he gets the message.
>> No. 115255
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115255
>>114751
>>114871
Here's the first chapter.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/15zpJWtRt--akGccQhSJo7WUp9NKX7SoqDiCPHrp_Gew/edit
>> No. 115256
File 134437981986.png - (113.24KB , 900x770 , Derpy173.png )
115256
>>115255
Derp!
>> No. 115261
However, what if there was a ship fan fiction that included a love triangle between the cutie mark crusaders? Probably the most pedophile thing I've said, ever. (That was terrible grammar.) If one has been written, somepony show me it. I kind of want to read it.
>> No. 115262
>>115261
Oh, and show me a Skyrim Fan Fiction that was fantastic.
>> No. 115265
>>115261

>Story Forge
http://www.ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/106451+50.html
>Recommendations and requests
http://ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/88527.html
>> No. 115269
>>115195
Pre-readers also wanted an outline of the entire plot so I want to finish that up and get that reviewed as well. I'll be back when that's finished
>> No. 115270
>>115261
Seattle (divergence guy, read Divergence, read it now) is going to write one which has at least one threesome, but I don't know about a love triangle, and they are ground up, and I don't really like the story too much.

Also, read the damn sticky.

Where is that gif when you need it?
>> No. 115274
>>115253
That's alright, thanks for letting me know. I'm perfectly willing to wait however long is necessary.

Yeesh. Really tricky to keep up with these posts. Thank Celestia for Ctrl F.
>> No. 115275
>>115270
Thanks... I forgot about the sticky... I'll go read that quick.
>> No. 115276
>>115275
Odd, I can't access it. 404 not found apparently.
>> No. 115277
>>115265
Ah, thank you. I'll go there later. Sorry for wasting everyone's time.
>> No. 115278
>>115277
didn't waste anyone's time, maybe except your own because you are less likely to get the answer you want. Place is a bit uptight, but they mean well.
>> No. 115288
Title: Colorful
Tags: [Slice of Life] [Comedy]

Synopsis: An experiment gone right has left Rainbow Dash's rainbow mane in a vial of Twilight's. But when Pinkie stops by for a visit and mistakes the vial for a drink, she decides that all of her friends have to try this amazing creation, sending Twilight and Rainbow Dash onto a more-than-colorful chase...

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1RDpFMrPcL9bSLc5kMkj340947Nyz_24eb41fgqbKGNU/edit

I've been told it's missing something. Also, I'm not too good at comedy, so some help there would be appreciated.
>> No. 115303
File 134441303595.jpg - (70.44KB , 250x370 , sadcadance.jpg )
115303
Tags: Sad, Romance

Synopsis: I'll tell you a story. It's a tale about a unicorn with wings. I'll tell you about the Princess that kept her alive, the filly that taught her to care, and the stallion she loved. This is her story... it's my story.

Link: Chapter 1: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1L-YDdQXu-NGrZZWzXeQU3GT5MeYb3GMjghxTAcDIGmY/edit

Outline: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xEolagJkW5YtVT2cPfqPUukKJonr05BZ9Wi1MwXQoXU/edit

Comments: Pre-readers mentioned issues with comma splices, word repetition, passive voice, and tautological issues. They also requested a plot outline which I have also included a link to. Thank you once more for helping with the story
>> No. 115304
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115304
GREAT GOOGLY-MOOGLY.

This is going to take a lot of explaining. I’ve grouped some case examples of issues I’ve been seeing into categories, and have distinguished them with ✸. You have a story here that needs to be made less bland and have more originality in it, but you also have a Mary Sue of sorts here. This is the last I really care to read of this story unless you can deliver, so in this review I hope to give you as many criticisms and helping suggestions as I can as a sort of send-off.

✸ Technical fluff that has no bearing on the plot, or serves no purpose other than to show off the protagonist’s knowledge or otherwise draw attention to her:
I get the impression that she knows a lot. Okay. She knows a lot in multiple fields of material sciences and construction/design. Okay. Ever think this might be too much? I think you’ve got a bit of a Mary Sue going here. She’s going into this story with so very much preexisting knowledge. Isn’t part of the adventure towards a great discovery/invention the whole learning of it?

(ch 1)
> The lantern she carried in her teeth, and used a combination of her own magic and a backpack contraption to light the way. While the lantern looked normal on the outside, inside it contained a small glass sphere attached to a cable that ran to the backpack. With a bit of concentration, Whirlie manipulated the energies in the machinery on her back to cause the small orb to glow white-hot. Path thus illuminated, Whirlie made her way into the town square.
That’s a really long way of saying she lit a lantern and began making her way off to town to buy groceries.

> That pony, a curly maned pink earth pony, spotted her quickly and charged toward her. Whirlie froze in her tracks and went wide-eyed, dropping the lantern and losing her concentration, then braced herself for the inevitable, she assumed, collision. “Force is mass times acceleration,” she began muttering to herself. She opened one eye in an attempt to judge the onrushing force, “or is it momentum here?” She screwed up her face in thought, forgetting the bracing, and flopped on the ground, grabbed a stick, and began scratching the equations into the dirt at her feet.
Apart from the obvious, I’ll first call your attention to something rather strange here. Think for a moment about how far away you can spot something in the dark, or at least in an area that is illuminated by urban lighting. Now think of how far away, in these conditions, you can spot something and recognize it as being pink, with a curly hair, and recognize it as a plain pony and not a pony with wings or a horn. Now take that distance and divide it by the velocity that this object is traveling towards the protagonist. Is that enough time to drop the lantern, “brace” (which means pause and tense up for an indefinite period of time), start muttering to herself about Newton’s second law of motion, second-guess herself, and then flop to the ground and begin to scratch equations in the dirt?

This brings me to an important point, boys and girls: don’t smoke crack.

> “What do the gears mean?” Pinkie commented, indicating Whirlie’s cutie mark. This caused Whirlie to pause and examine her flank for a moment. She had always thought the intricate clockwork was a little strange herself, considering she’d never tried her hoof at building a clock and spent most of her time hammering metal.
All of a sudden, Pinkie Pie pointing to her rear causes to her look back at it, despite it’s something she’s lived with most of her adult life (which I assume means that she knows what it looks like). Also, it seems I’ve identified another telltale sign of OC-comes-to-town story: everyone look at my mysterious cutie mark so we can find out what it means.

Exactly how often are cutie marks brought into the spotlight in the actual show? Three times in the first season as I recall, since I too have indulged in ponies. When ponies are introduced to each other, do they ask each other about what’s on their haunch? Did they do that to Miss Sparkle when she first landed in Ponyville? Exactly how important is it to know what a cutie mark means to understand a pony? In the show, it is a sort of artistic means of quickly tossing in subtleties or information by hinting at a background character’s vocation or lifestyle without needing them to say a word. Here, in fanfiction, we have them as a storytelling crutch. In all such formulaic fics, the cutie mark is the all-important contrived opportunity to blab about a character and where he/she comes from and what their destiny is — and if that isn’t clear, and the cutie mark’s meaning isn’t totally obvious, then ooh boy, we’ve got a show-stopper here. It’s gotta be really big and amazing, because the character has a mysterious cutie mark that doesn’t mean anything obvious, so the story is probably about said character finding a great destiny. YAWN.

> “I’m not a train engineer. I build things,” she explained.
> “Ohh! Like clocks! I get it!”
> “Not clocks, exactly. I’m usually more of a blacksmith or tinker. I build tools, reinforce parts with metal fittings, that sort of thing. I’ve cultivated a talent for channeling unicorn magic to power devices.”
> “Like that lantern?” Pinkie indicated the small backpack on the floor attached to the lantern.
“Exactly. I learned it from my father, but I think most unicorns could learn to do it; it’s not that hard.” Whirlie walked over and pulled the device out of the pack: a metal canister with the cable coming out of one end. Popping open a hatch on the side, Whirlie showed Pinky a coil of glass that was faintly glowing. “This thing is a phase coil; my magic can superheat matter inside of it to convert it to plasma; that goes out the cable and into the glass sphere in the lantern. See?” Whirlie concentrated and the material in the glass began to glow brighter, followed shortly by the lantern illuminating. Pinkie watched, mesmerized.
I thought we were done with the lantern by this point! Why must you inflict the reader with the lantern yet again?!

(ch 3)

> Whirlie found the library, which she found to be curiously built into a tree. Neither arbormancy nor archimancy were among her abilities, but she paused to admire the structure.
Does the reader need to know this? Does the reader need to hear these these words “archimancy” and “arbomancy”? It seems you began a chapter with this unnecessary bit here just to say those words, and have it sound all epic.

> “You must be the new pony in town...the blacksmith?” she asked.
> “Well I’m a blacksmith by trade,” she began explaining, “but I’m really more of an engineer, or a tinkerer. I’m actually interested in magic theory, or rather putting magic theory into practice...”
This is a redundant introduction to what her life’s passion is all about. Does the reader really need to read it a second time?

> “What is your idea, anyway? And what are you good at? I would have assumed you were a clockmaker, judging by your cutie mark.” Twilight interjected.
> “Well...I design things, and work with metal. I’m...pretty good at math, but you kind of have to be to build anything worthwhile. The idea is pretty simple, really,” Whirlie explained, pulling a notebook out of her pack and opening it in front of Twilight. The pages were coated in of diagrams, formulae, and notes. “You see, we siphon off our unicorn magic...” she pointed to a diagram of a ring with some sort of cable attached, looped over a unicorn horn. “That’s the real hard part, I think.”
This again? AGAIN??? By this point, you’ve already used the cutie mark as a crutch for introducing her and her hobby/vocation, TWICE. Once is bad enough. Three times is certainly bad, and certainly in itself sufficient motivation for not wanting to post it on a high-traffic blog (Equestria Daily).

> “Rainbow!” Twilight responded in a harsh tone. “There’s nothing wrong with her idea, it’s theoretically sound...assuming it doesn’t blow up,” she amended.
Miss Sparkle barely knows her, immediately defends her from mean old Rainbow Dash’s taunting, despite how utterly and completely obtuse one would have to be to spend the time, money, blood, sweat and tears to build a massive tower out of stones, when the goal in mind and life’s passion is to find a way to fly and one’s talent (again) is engineering (which type of engineering, I can only guess).

> “I’ve played with rockets since I was a foal, and I think that part will be easy,” she explained, pages of notes fluttering by. “And I’ve even done some work on transferring the plasma out of the phase coil array,” she went on, pulling more notebooks out of her pack. “But, I haven’t figured out how to efficiently transfer magic power in such a way that I can drive the coil. You don’t happen to have any ideas that might help with that, do you?”
More of what I’m talking about here. Also, she’s been playing with rockets since she was a foal? Wow, she’s really, really gifted. Also, ponies know how to build rockets in the first place?

(ch 4)

> Today was a big day. Twilight had uncovered and had been studying a method for siphoning energy from a unicorn’s horn. The text from which she derived it was an old one and had been under lock-and-key deep in the Canterlot special collections. The reason for the high security was that the text in question was the journal of a unicorn sorcerer named Darkmane, and the purpose of the device was not to power machinery, but rather to render powerless a captive unicorn. Twilight had been working on adapting it, because the device drew out magic efficiently, precisely what they needed. She had been poring over the text for weeks, being an avid academician, and collected notes on the parts relevant to their work.
For the most part, to me this just appears as fluff and nothing more than a very non-subtle attempt to give prestige and a high-profile air to the whole venture. If you want to convey that it’s important and whatnot, wouldn’t there be outsiders spying on her? Characters trying to interfere?

Furthermore, I’ll call your attention to this: she did all this for a stranger. Where were her existing friends during these weeks of study?

The rest of the passage wherein the quote I just made was found is more technical fluff. It’s okay if it’s there, there just needs to be less of it. More meaningful things happening, less of the following things:
- Whirlie Gears just listing off items from a scavenger hunt that will serve as the components
- Whirlie Gears just doing stuff to stuff and making it all come together
- Materials, materials, materials. While I do like shiny things, and a tinge of purple prose is okay here and there, you’re lingering too long on the construction of the thing and and less about what it represents.

Now, regarding the remainder of chapter 4 up to the point. Here’s the issue: it all just comes together, and the tiniest inkling of a setback or something interesting happening is all at the very end of it all (the passage, not the construction) due to some unforseen factoid about magical theory, which makes it seem just a bit contrived.

✸ The protagonist emoting about past mistakes or spelling out her needs so that characters from the show can then assuage her fears and welcome her, even offer her help:
This one I believe deserves some explanation. You want your readers to avoid thinking you wrote it as wish-fulfillment. Thus, if you lavish your character with hospitality from the main characters, you run the risk of just that.
(ch 1)
> “I guess you’re supposed to evict me? Word travels fast. I haven’t even moved in yet,” she replied.
> “Evict you? Nononononono! Welcome you! To Ponyville! Your new home, silly!” Pinkie announced, as she stood up on her hind legs and tossed confetti into the air, the smile on her face not once flinching.
Pinkie Pie must always be the welcome machine in Ponyville. That’s the way it is in every fanfiction about some new original fan-made character coming to town. If it doesn’t involve this, it’s not a fanfiction about some OC coming to town.

In all seriousness, however, this is a prime example of what the pre-readers meant in terms of the story following the same old tired clichés.

(ch 2)

> “Did they forget to bring your forge?” Pinkie asked after glancing out front.
> “No, I’m going to have to have one built. You can’t really move them,” Whirlie explained. “I’m also going to need to make a number of modifications to the house if I’m going to get any work done,” she said, holding open one of her notebooks. Pinkie eyed it intently.
> “Well, I know where we can get plenty of rocks!” Pinkie explained. “Tomorrow we can go to my family rock farm and get what you need.”
This one here is a bit different: it’s a very, very plain set-up for the events of retrieving the rocks for her forge. Thank goodness that whole lot of boring labor is totally skipped over in the time-jump that happens soon afterwards. At any rate, it seems almost like a contrivance that was stuck there merely to answer the question of where her new forge comes from. Now, granted, we actually do need that question answered, but considering how few things happen in this story, it stands out as a contrivance all the more strongly.

(ch 3)

> Whirlie was getting nervous now, and started to back slowly toward the door. She thought to herself, “Darnit, Whirlie! Why did you have to let that slip!” Out loud she replied, “Umm...I just failed to account for the amount of wind up there is all and I didn’t realize that clouds didn’t support any un-flightbound weight. The whole thing just kind of got out of control.” She sped up with, “Please don’t kick me out of town and throw me in a dungeon!”
> Twilight looked at her with one eyebrow arched. “I don’t think I could do that. And besides, what somepony did before she came to town is no reason to judge her now,” Twilight explained, nearly growling at Rainbow Dash. “The news said you built the whole thing by yourself. You did the design work and the construction?” She looked shocked.
> “I always do everything myself,” Whirlie explained, blinking. “I mean...I don’t think anypony else is really interested in getting into the clouds; except the pegasi, but that’s like their whole thing,” she glanced at Rainbow. “Besides, most ponies avoid me once they know who I am. I guess they’d rather be injured as bystanders than in the line of research. I was the only one in the hospital for four weeks after the...err...incident...so I guess the math is on their side.”
> “You know, Whirlie, I’d help you out. Have you ever asked anypony if they wanted to help?”
> Whirlie responded by staring at her blankly.
> Twilight went on, “With some help, the work probably won’t be so dangerous...”
> Whirlie continued staring, her head slowly tilting to one side before she regained her senses. “Umm...I guess no pony ever offered and I never thought to ask,” she responded, blushing. “Working together would be...an honor. And probably considerably less dangerous,” she said, looking up.
Prime example of what this category is all about. I initially thought of quoting just the first three lines here, but the entire thing is relevant. Twilight immediately admires her for her skill, and then two lines of dialogue later offers her help. To top it all off, unnecessary blushing. Again. It’s like flying moves in an old kung fu flick. To kick someone’s ass, flying moves are totally not necessary, but still the wires are there. However, the distinction to make between Jet Li and this story is that blushes don’t make the story more awesome, they make it seem more contrived and forceful.
>> No. 115305
>>115152
Sure, thanks for taking this up again. You the man. Sorry, sorry. You're the man.
>> No. 115306
File 134441391109.jpg - (55.39KB , 490x567 , Frank+Zappa (1).jpg )
115306
Final suggestions and whatnot are at the end.

✸ Miscellaneous oddities and things I didn’t completely agree with:
(ch 1)
> “Of course...” Whirlie’s ears perked up at this “...not!” and then drooped.
You need to have actions on different lines/paragraphs if the character acting is different than the character speaking. Also, being the pink ball of energy that she is, I’m inclined to think that Pinkie Pie talks a little too fast for this sort of thing here to happen. That is, unless....

I just remembered another important point: don’t smoke crack.

(ch 2)

> the whole thing with the “gray moving pegasus with a bubble cutie mark” and the anvil that she drops, and how the pink pony predicts it all happening.
I swear, I’ve seen this thing before. Thus, you writing it into this story doesn’t seem very original.
> “Don’t worry,” Pinkie explained, “she’s always dropping anvils on ponies. Good thing we were inside!”
Oh yeah! How could I have forgotten. This pronouncement makes it all better, so you don’t have to worry about it being totally unoriginal.

> Some weeks later, Whirlie was settling into life in Ponyville comfortably. Although she had met a few local ponies, she spent most of her time at home. Being on the outskirts of town, most of the ponies she met were there specifically to do business (either selling her materials, or commissioning repairs or manufacturing).
Attention: this is a lazy gloss-over. Noticed I haven’t sugarcoated my words by saying “this appears to be a lazy gloss-over” — because it actually is a lazy gloss-over. Here, opportunity exists for introducing more of the conflict (see suggestions at the end) and story development story interspersed with her getting settled in, which might actually give the story more tension, i.e. her contending with new issues (hell, even characters from the her hometown whose property she damaged) while having to adapt at the same time. This stuff here makes me sleepy because it’s just so ordinary.

Also, I must say, you seem to have a fetish for parentheses. Lest you accuse me of the same, I’ll have you know that I’m not the one writing prose here. Save those things for when there’s absolutely no other way to slip in that interruptive or appositive, because it makes your writing look really amateurish.

> Her business was up and running. She spent most of the day repairing tools and tinkering. Her neighbors only occasionally complained about the hammering noises; and most of those problems were solved by her convincing herself to quit working after dark.
> Before too long, she was ready to begin her next personal project. “To the clouds, Whirlie,” she sighed to herself, looking up. She noted Cloudsdale floating by in the distance. “This time, I’m going to make it up there.”
> She set off for the town library to research unicorn magic.
It’s just so plain and glossed-over. You’re not giving any detail. Who are her neighbors? What are they like? They are, after all, characters she’ll be spending a lot more time around, considering she lives on the outskirts of town. Here’s an idea: spend some time thinking about how the neighbors will be. Give them all histories and personalities and quirky, memorable behaviors. Oh then you’ll have something to do while setting the stage for what comes next, instead of skipping over important things like who lives near where she lives. She’s developing revolutionary new technology for crying out loud, or so we’re lead to believe. So, I ask you: write like that’s actually the case. Are her neighbors spying on her? Are they curious? Does their annoyance drive them to contact law enforcement to get her in trouble for violating noise ordinance?

(ch 3)

> “You don’t happen to know somepony who could help me with that do you? Pinkie Pie mentioned that Princess Celestia’s magic prodigy was around here somewhere, and I was hoping to meet her.”
> Blushing, the purple pony replied...
Why would Miss Sparkle blush? Did Whirlie Gears just tell a subtle dirty joke? Why would Twilight allow herself to feel flattered by being identified? It’s overkill and looks like it was inserted just for effect, i.e. to have a pony blush.

—---------------------------------------------------------

Summary, and suggestions for improvement:
For everything, and I mean everything before chapter 4: it looks like a story about an eccentric hobbyist who moves into ponyville and continues her hobbies. Don’t get me wrong, you’ve spelled out quite clearly how you intend for her to build a device for unicorns to be able to fly, but for something of this nature, you missed the starting gun in terms of building up conflict. Presumably there would be some opposition? Pegasus luddites who work in Pegasus chariot airline companies maybe? I expected a story about ponies without wings attempting to fly, not a story about a pony who goes to Ponyville and makes friends with all the characters from the show. If I wanted that, I’d re-watch season 1, episode 1. Needless to say, I was sorely disappointed as I read.

I really want to see a story with this premise succeed, so I’m going to go out on a limb and make some suggestions as to how you could get this story on the right track: first, I suggest that you take some time and really contemplate this single question: if you had one sentence to explain your entire story, what would you say in that sentence?

Next, strip your idea down to its barest kernel of conflict-climax-resolution and work out from there, performing the following: two things: foreshadowing and introducing introducing important conflicts. By important conflicts, I don’t mean her contending with technical difficulties, I mean conflicts with other characters and forces at work that are actually sentient.

Thirdly, if you haven’t seen the movie October Sky, then you need to, and before continuing work on this story. Note how it’s all about four boys back in the 50’s who just want to get their rockets to fly. They try and try and try and fail and fail and fail, but they also had to contend with stubborn and closed-minded parents, heckling bullies, an antagonistic school principal, and a helpful teacher passing away. The story is not just about how they do what they can with what they have and who they have (although that whole aspect of it was really great); it was about them facing the odds against them to rise above the status quo, rallying friends to their cause (mind you, by demonstrating their persistence, not merely showing their faces the way it goes with Whirlie Gears[/i]) and attracting naysayers along the way. Think about all that.

All in all, just remember this: don’t use your idea for a story merely to tell us about this pony’s technical knowledge and how she intends to use it, or about how she automatically wins the favor and hospitality of the locals who’d gladly welcome a “menace to society”. Even though those, especially the technical details, are going to be part of the story, you want to make sure that’s not all there is to the story. If it were, then that would make it like a story written about a rerun of Mythbusters that merely describes what happens in the episode.
> “They took the pieces of cheese and placed them on the table, where they would sit until ready for loading into the cannon to see if they would work as cannonballs. Then Kari ate a piece of one of the cheeses because she was pregnant and getting hungry, and it was close to lunchtime anyways.”
(sorry, couldn’t resist)

From the first four chapters, it definitely seems to be the case that you haven’t introduced enough of your story soon enough. Make a good first impression is all I ask. It takes all the way until the middle of chapter 4 to get something of interest going, and even then it’s still pretty heavily-loaded with technicalities not properly balanced out by characters and/or substantive plot.

Keep writing.
>> No. 115328
>>115274

Great, I've let him know. According to him, it'll probably only be two or three days at most.
>> No. 115330
Applejack' Little Secret
Applejack, Funny, Normal, Family
Everypony has a secret. This is Applejack's little secret.
http://www.fimfiction.net/story/42016/Applejack%27s-Little-Secret-


Just a lot of the same things all the way through it seems. Most of the errors I found are just repeats of issues I pointed out before, nearly all of which can be easily fixed. Problems with spelling (typos, redundancies), punctuation (misuse of semicolons, dialogue punctuation, lack of commas where needed), and show versus tell (character actions/reactions) are still present within the story and should be addressed during the editing process. This being the second strike of three, I must advise you to find an editor and/or head over to Ponychan's /fic/ board for additional help, the story is closer than before but you mustn't squander your remaining strike, please take your time and dont rush. -prereader 12



This is a fanfic I wrote. I am currently trying to get it posted on EQD, but am on my last strike. I have had it preread before, but new mistakes keep popping up.

Looking for someone to read it, and find the mistakes so that i can fix it. It should be near finished because of all the proof reads and corrections already made.

Thanks to whoever takes up this task, I can only offer mention in the story for your hard work.
>> No. 115335
I didn't see anything in the sticky about this, so I'm just gonna ask.

If I posted a story, got a review, and fixed my problems, can I post that same story again for another reviewer? I want to make sure my fic is spotless before I send it to EQD, and yes, I know I have three strikes.

Thanks!
>> No. 115336
>>115335
I can't speak on re-posting in this thread, but there are several dedicated review threads, and I know you can post in more than one of those.

If I've read correctly, though, it is courteous to let the thread-maker know if you have/are/will posted/posting/post elsewhere, and if so with whom.
>> No. 115337
>>115335

Yes, yes you can. It certainly doesn't hurt to have something double checked, or even triple checked, as long as you've made an effort to improve it since last time.
>> No. 115338
File 134444075207.jpg - (13.38KB , 244x207 , righto.jpg )
115338
>>115335
Nothing's stopping you. In fact, posting after you've had it cleaned up is the best way to go about it, imo.
>> No. 115340
File 134444257118.png - (56.09KB , 864x478 , FF Pic.png )
115340
>>115338
>>115337
>>115336
Thanks all ya'lls! For that, here is the new and improved Homework is for Home, re-posted and hopefully better than last time.

Tags: Normal, Still-is-Slice-of-Life

Synopsis (also shiny and new):
A young unicorn called Spark has always loved school, though she's only in Magic Kindergarten. Reading, basic spells. math, you name it. Though, potions has never been her favorite topic. Of course she aced it - she couldn't fail if she tried - but after a certain day she never exactly enjoyed the class. That certain day, a not-so-average school day, the teacher let the class try a little something special. That special treat, however, may ruin the class for Spark forever. Homework is meant to be finished at home, after all.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/18caTjPOW9XxvcoLnX715DcQPtNSk_1h37HM2c--wZ9o/edit

Comments: I hopefully cleaned up all of the telling, now I just want an opinion on whether you enjoyed reading it, or if it's just another far-fetched theory.

Thanks for dealing with my persistence!
>> No. 115343
File 134444293479.png - (27.16KB , 140x124 , Power.png )
115343
>>113638
>>114124
I'll most likely get done before the end of the week (by August 11). It's been a crazy one, to say the least. I don't know if you're watching this thread, Author, so I might end up PMing you a link to the review once it's finished anyway.
>> No. 115344
File 134444350198.jpg - (119.33KB , 1280x720 , YUR WELCOME.jpg )
115344
>>115330

Sure, I'll take this one while I wait for my own review. Hopefully it'll be finished in a day or so.
>> No. 115345
File 134444362333.jpg - (119.33KB , 1280x720 , YUR WELCOME.jpg )
115345
>>115330

Sure, I'll take this one while I wait for my own review. Hopefully it'll be finished in a day or so.
>> No. 115346
>>115344
>>115345
Ugh, sorry about that
>> No. 115349
>>115306

Thanks, Pup Tent, your reviews are much more clear and honest than anything else I've gotten. Might just be this is not my calling, but we'll see.

I've considered replacing the mane 6 characters with OCs just to avoid those concerns altogether. But Twilight works really well as the even-headed scientist and Dash as the devil on the shoulder saying "just go do it now!"

I guess I should have just left the assembly bit as it was before, which was pretty much "and they worked all night...next morning..."

Thanks again!
>> No. 115393
File 134447806622.jpg - (16.01KB , 256x256 , My severed head.jpg )
115393
>>115255
Thankee kindly. I had a feeling that some parts of RD's narration were a little off, but I'm almost shamed by how much of it is wrong after looking at your review.

I'd put up an argument for 'learnt', but I can accept that most readers won't be sticklers for British conventions.

I'd much rather keep the part about Dash's thoughts over the sink as it is, though. I'm guessing you thought I should cut it down to let it flow better with the rest (since the whole thing is Dash's thought process anyway), but I'd really prefer it separated like it is now. In my mind at least, it just suits that passage more. I just can't think of a way to express what I mean by that.

I can only hope that it gets better in the next chapters.

(P.S. I'll need a postal address and possible allergy information if I'm to send you these M&M's. Feel free to redirect them to a charity of your choice instead if you don't want them, though.)
>> No. 115409
File 134448368284.png - (56.24KB , 270x269 , Rainbow Dash 313.png )
115409
>>115393
I mostly just wanted to see if you would actually mail them to me, so you could just donate to the Brony Thank You Fund— which is currently collecting for Marine Toys For Tots.

http://www.bronythankyoufund.org/
>> No. 115413
File 134448403700.jpg - (36.54KB , 500x475 , Frank+Zappa.jpg )
115413
>>115349
> I guess I should have just left the assembly bit as it was before, which was pretty much "and they worked all night...next morning..."
Heck no, the assembly part is decent writing, and I enjoyed it the most of the piece up to chapter four. You've got some nice descriptions therein. I'm just saying it's not great story telling. You need to balance it out is all, so that it doesn't seem just like technological wet dreaming. Don't get me wrong, that sort of thing is fine, just not on its own.

Just focus on getting more foreshadowing and plot development done. And yes, you do run the risk of being perceived as unoriginal if you stick with the show characters. That's because everyone wants a piece of them and so having them interact with fan-made characters is as common as mud where fanfiction is concerned. On the other hand, if you use original characters, you'll just really have to work at making them interesting and getting the reader to care about them. It might be an interesting challenge.
>> No. 115415
>>115393
I'm still on track to give you a review starting Tuesday. There won't be any bad grammar in there once I'm through with it.
>> No. 115425
Brace yourselves, because you are looking at someone who has been given a FOURTH chance at getting this story on EQD.

So naturally, I need some help, because with each successive pass, more stuff keeps cropping up that I somehow missed, or just didn't think of in the first place.

[tags] Comedy, Dark, Crossover, Adventure

[Synopsis] After an unplanned total eclipse of the sun, Fluttershy discovers an unusual plant and decides to take it home. But what she doesn't realize is that this plant could quite possibly spell the end of Equestria as we know it.

[Story Link] http://www.fimfiction.net/story/36681/Little-Fluttershop-of-Horrors

[EQD Stuff] https://docs.google.com/document/d/1_UgL7UqRKmM8ajqdKHAUoHuR079_zU5AI81coC8CwkU/edit

Thanks in advance
>> No. 115435
File 134449322699.jpg - (56.78KB , 704x640 , 131163973902.jpg )
115435
>>115425
You're one lucky son of a bitch, you know that?
>> No. 115444
>>115415
I know, and I'm looking forward to being lambasted.
>> No. 115446
>>115409
But they don't take peanut M&Ms...
>> No. 115447
>>115435
Lucky? Not lucky, just very eager, willing to work to make his story better (well, make it into EqD, those two aren't the same thing if very similar and I don't want people to make a shitstorm out of it), and in general the sort of newbie people enjoy to work with because they know they will get the satisfaction of seeing him succeed.

That said, whomever claims it, make sure you are very good, and you author, make sure to have more than one person check it out, and make sure that person is known for down his stuff good.

*back to lurking...*
>> No. 115454
>>115288

Haven't done some reviewing in a while, and I always love a good chuckle. So, let's see what we can do.
>> No. 115457
File 134452627209.jpg - (13.19KB , 179x202 , Evil_Lyra_II.jpg )
115457
Sorry for the long delay in your review. I participated in Roger's write-off and then got sick, so I haven't been feeling too well for the past couple of days. I hope that my review here makes up for it. Anyhoo, let's delve into why the pre-readers weren't interested in posting your story. Sometimes it's not just mechanics that need fixing in stories, it may also be the premise and sometimes it's just the execution. You can have a cliched storyline with tropes if your writing is so amazing that it's better than the rest of the stories. However, since this is your first attempt at story telling, it makes sense that the writing comes out as forgettable.

Since this subject has been done so many times, you have to work that much harder to interest readers. Let me put it this way. Your writing is very dull and dry, and treads over old ground with nothing new to show for it. As a piece of writing done just to get your writing out there, it's a good thing, but be aware of the purpose of EqD, which is to showcase stories. Writing this story was still a good thing just so that you can improve your writing skills and see what it's like to have your own story. Just because EqD doesn't want it doesn't mean you don't have to keep writing it. But that depends on you.

Since it's been many times before, and the writing is kinda telly and boring with nothing that really stands out, I can see why the pre-reader said those things. Perhaps he should have said it with more tact, but let's say that your story needs more "oomph." Your story is also filled with basic punctuation mistakes, as if you didn't bother to proofread your own story. If you want to hook readers, your introduction must be strong enough. Judging from the first few paragraphs, where you deliver information that everyone already knows, I'd say that it's a terrible, telling, introduction. It's packed full of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome (I'll address what that is in my review later) and the way the characters speak is weird. The characters already know stuff that happened, so having them say it through dialogue to inform the reader sounds heavy-handed. That's like going around in real life and telling people stuff they already know. They'll just look at you funny.

This story is marked sad and they're reminiscing about their lives. For some reason, I have a feeling in the back of my mind that says something sad is going to happen. I wonder which of the common tragedy tropes it will be, but I guess I'll just have to wait and see.

tl;dr listing of errors:

Missing commas after introductory phrases
Missing commas after direct addresses
Dry writing
Lots of telling
Dialogue that sounds off
Lots of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome
Bland Hook
Cliched premise
Looks like it wasn't proofread. Missing punctuation.


Commas:

A lot of your sentences are missing periods and commas, you sometimes have periods where commas should go, you're missing commas before direct addresses of names, and you're missing commas before introductory clauses.

Borrowing a blurb from Filler here real quick.

>Comma placement. They go after adverbial phrases if those phrases begin sentences. Likewise, they also go between addresses and addressees, as well as between those two and any other part of the sentence. For example: “Twilight, put down that chair.” “Sorry, Mr. Davenport.” “No, I cannot.” “So glad you could join us, Mr. Anderson.” “Yes, Celestia.”

Judging by your last response, I'd say you already learned this, but I thought I should mention it again anyway. Just in case, here's another resource for you to read because your story is missing a lot of commas.

http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/607/03/

Here are some examples of missing commas in your story.

>"How could I forget my hero Lyra?"
>"Congratulations Lyra. I'm so happy for you," said Bon-Bon.
>Without waiting for any sort of reply Lyra helped her up and waved a hoof to let Bon-Bon know to follow her.
>"If I hadn't met you I never would've gotten my cutie mark."
>"You really like bonbons don't you?"
>After a small amount of deliberation (the) pink and blue maned filly pointed at a small box of candies determinedly.

There are many run-on sentences in your story. I didn't list all of them, only a few examples.

Boring Writing:

This has to do with the fact that you outright tell the reader all of the emotions that the characters are feeling. It's not very engaging and doesn't allow us to really feel the emotions of the characters. Combine that with unnatural sounding dialogue and I'm kinda wondering why should I care about reading this story. There is a time and place for telling vs showing, but I believe you are utilizing them at the wrong time. I wish I could describe it better, but I feel like your characters are puppets. Yes, technically that is what you're doing, but you have to hide the strings.

I'm just going to post a few links that will help you with your telling problems and dialogue issues. Perhaps they will help, should you choose to read them.

Links for Showing vs Telling (First Three) and Dialogue (Second Three):

http://victoriamixon.com/2010/12/01/the-6-degrees-of-show-vs-tell-rated-by-quality/
http://www.coffeehouseforwriters.com/fictionfix/0505Grossack.html
http://jerz.setonhill.edu/writing/creative1/showing/

http://fictionwriting.about.com/od/crafttechnique/tp/dialogue.htm
http://blog.nathanbransford.com/2010/09/seven-keys-to-writing-good-dialogue.html
http://www.noveldoctor.com/2011/05/04/how-to-write-good-dialogue/

There is also a lot of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome (LUS) that gets extremely distracting. It makes it really hard to tell who is doing what because I have to keep stopping every five seconds to figure out which pony is which. Anyhoo, here's the definition of LUS (provided by Vanner):

Avoid Lavender Unicorn Syndrome. Lavender Unicorn Syndrome is what happens when, instead of using your characters name or a pronoun, you repeatedly use other descriptors for them. You only have to describe your characters once, and again if something about them changed. Just remember that “Lavender Unicorn Syndrome” affects hundred of ponies every year. Symptoms include cyan pegasi, white alicorns, and of course, lavender unicorns. But there is hope. Ask Nurse Redheart if new and improved PRONOUNS® are right for you. Side effects include better writing, love and adoration of fans, acceptance to EqD, glitter cannons, and dry mouth. PRONOUNS®. Because having a lavender unicorn is no way to go through life.

<end quote>

The most common reason for saying other things besides their name is because they don't want to be repetitive. Well, that's what pronouns are for. Besides, you're still being repetitive but when you use names, at least it's less confusing. If your writing is still too confusing with pronouns or you can't get away without saying their names dozens of times, then you have to rewrite your sentences and reorder them to operate from a single viewpoint. That way, the pronouns refer to that character and you can stop with all of the "cream colored pony" and "mint colored pony" jazz. Not convinced that Lavender Unicorn Syndrome isn't a bad thing? Then have some more links!

Links for Lavender Unicorn Syndrome:

http://eznwords.tumblr.com/post/21010451863/ellyewess

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/mind-your-language/2010/jun/02/my-synonym-hell-mind-your-language

http://trickster.org/arduinna/epithet.html

Examples of Telling:

Don't be so direct with the feelings! Here are some examples of telling sentences in your story.

>Lyra, still looking at Bon-Bon with both love and sadness in her eyes
>"I remember like it was yesterday," answered the green mare, her fake smile still hiding her true feelings.
>Bon-Bon's face couldn't hide her sadness.
>A terrified look came over the unicorn leader.


What Makes This Story Stand Out?

Moving on to the next thing now. Most readers nowadays are very finicky with their stories and will drop one as soon as they get bored. There are many reasons why people stop reading, but it most commonly happens when their suspension of disbelief is broken. When they open your story, you have at most three sentences to capture their attention or they will bail. Just look at your introduction. It's kinda bland and not very interesting. Telling readers information that they already know is not going to make them want to stay. Judging by how the rest of the chapter went, I can see the inklings of what you were going for, at least. You're trying to write a sad story, but you want the reader to feel sad by giving them a glimpse into the past. Although that is what you're supposed to do, the execution comes off as underwhelming. The dialogue just feels weird and the telly writing isn't really interesting. As I said, I've read so many different stories just like this before. Since EqD is a showcase, they want something different than the others.

Not saying you shouldn't write this story, that's not it at all. I'm simply saying that you should use this story as a stepping stone towards your later writing and perhaps not worry so much if it doesn't go on EqD. Because the premise is cliche, it's that much harder to make people read it.

Missing Punctuation

The last problem, which is a very glaring one mind you, is the fact that your story looks like you rushed through it and immediately after writing it, you stuck it on fimfiction. There are many missing bits of punctuation after the sentences (missing commas not withstanding because you didn't know about those). I'll provide some examples for you. Can you spot the missing periods and commas?

>“Bon-Bon, my name’s Bon-Bon”
>"And I'm so glad you did" she whispered back.
>“No thanks”
>“Just take the cupcake”
>“I’m not hungry”
>“Really now, I want you to have it”
>“I appreciate that but I’m fine”
>“Maybe some other time”
>“No thank you”
>“… okay”
>"Maybe there was something special about today" Bon-Bon suggested.
>"I don't want anything, thank you. I only came here for Bon-Bon." Lyra responded, politely refusing the generous offer.

In the above example, that period should be a comma.

>A terrified look came over the unicorn leader,

This should be a period, not a comma. Also, this is a telly sentence.

>“That was…,” she said, “the most beautiful thing I’ve ever heard.”

In this example, the first comma doesn't belong there, so delete it.

>"Good luck" said Lyra long after the other pony had left the room; it took her that long to say the words.

Missing a comma after luck, not to mention that the phrase after that sounds weird. I can guess as to what you meant to say, but it could have been said better.

Also, there's this one odd line I found.

>Pointing at a particular photograph the earth pony said to the unicorn,

Why is your dialogue separated? If anything, you should have pushed this line down with the dialogue, otherwise it looks like formatting went and ate your story.

Final Thoughts

It's at this point where I realize that I'm doing too much editing work and that is why your review is taking way too long. Once again, I apologize for the delay. I should have sent this earlier. Hopefully I have provided enough input as to why your story needs a lot of work. It's just not interesting enough for me to keep going. I'd only be lying if I did, because most readers stop at the first two paragraphs anyway.

>Slight author's note here. I may have decided to finish and publish this chapter after writing for several hours while sleep deprived and slightly intoxicated. In short, I have edited about half of the chapter and thus I may need to go back and finish editing later. I just wanted to get this posted. So, if you notice any errors (anymore than normal) take solace in the fact that I'll fix them, eventually, probably... maybe...

If you don't want to put forth the effort into proofreading your story first, I don't really feel the need to force myself to point out constant errors, so I'll stop here. I believe it would be in your best interest to find an editor. Reviewers aren't editors (I tried, but eventually went insane) so... yeah...

Anyhoo, please don't be disheartened. This review was merely an attempt to help you see some of the common errors in your story and give you an insight as to why the pre-readers might not have been so enthusiastic about your story. I do hope you'll continue writing and learning from your mistakes, though. Have a pleasant day.
>> No. 115462
>>115457
Don't worry about taking so long. Since you did it gave me time to think. I looked at my story and honestly asked myself if it sucked. Yes, yes it does. I agree with everything you said and I appreciate you being honest with me. My story is boring, and it is cliched, and it is very telly. At this point I feel like I more or less need to completely scrap it and start over. But, honestly, I'm so bored by my own story that I don't even want to start over. At least not right now. I almost was going to ask you to just not bother to finish the review. I decided that I it would still be good to hear everything you had to say, however. So, now that I have, I want to reiterate how much i appreciate you taking the time to thoroughly dissect my story and not just say that it's crap,ut also why it's crap.

I haven't given up writing though. This is just a stepping stone towards improving my writing, and making it not suck. I'll probably have another story up for review soon. Hopefully it isnt nearly as boring, or riddled with grammatical errors. Anyways, thanks again and I hope my story didn't bore you to tears or anything.
>> No. 115464
looking for critique on the first chapter of my story being written for the NaPoWriMo

[Name] Bountiful Rainbows
[Author] dawningark (morning_angles here)
[Tags] Adventure, Crossover, Slice of Life
[Synopsis]: When the very nature of the seasons begins to fall into disarray, it falls to one unicorn to awaken the Princess of the Harvest, and undo the damage, before it spreads to all of Equestria. But does a New Yoke landscaper have what it takes to start a new life in the farming village of Marelot, turn the withering fortunes of the town around, and really get her hooves dirty?

Hub Page: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1V9cP9FZAwdvB37xTyj-Be3ipyGaYdwEk-o-l-BCZMKk/edit
Chapter 1: https://docs.google.com/document/d/19jkDuArI-n_LIxMFbsInEyyaSb37WAU3KENZCA2S76o/edit

looking for any and all feedback, positive, constructive, or otherwise on characters, story pacing, word choice, you name it. I fancy myself a good writer but I've never actually submitted anything anywhere before. wish I could take a story off the queue myself, but most my free time this month is going to be spent writing this monster for the NaPoWriMo =_=
>> No. 115468
File 134453293640.png - (340.63KB , 430x702 , Cloudchaser133289832555.png )
115468
>>115446
>Feel free to redirect them to a charity of your choice instead if you don't want them, though.
I assumed from this that you hadn't bought them yet. (And I don't know of any charities that accept candy.)

The address I sent you is my postal address and I don't have any food allergies.
>> No. 115470
File 134453355421.png - (162.68KB , 900x963 , lyra_by_shelmo69-d3nxeoe.png )
115470
>>115462

Good, good. I was afraid that you might want to quit writing completely just because I didn't like your story. Since it was your first attempt, of course it wasn't going to be great, but it's a necessary part of your improvement as a writer. I'm glad to hear that you didn't quit and are still willing to improve, so I shall look forward to your next story. Thanks for being reasonable. <3
>> No. 115488
>>115252
8/7, belongs to Karach, gonna grab this and take a stab at reviewing. Hope I'm doing this right.

also, a gracious anon informed me I left my comments off on >>115464 like a derp. So, fixed that, as well.
>> No. 115493
File 134455862223.jpg - (97.47KB , 800x600 , ORLY.jpg )
115493
Sorry this took longer than expected, I wanted to make sure I didn't miss anything.

You should know, this is my very first review of a pony fanfic, so if you want, you can totally ignore anything I say. Well, you can ignore anything anyone says, but now you actually have a reason

If it were a GDoc, I would do the review in-doc, but it isn't, so... Have some review!

First of all, her "big secret" is very... anticlimactic, and a lot of people in your comments agree with me. I'm guessing this is what you were going for. But not only is the secret itself very tiny, how you lead up to it is, too. I get that Applejack is excited for it, but when she gets to the clearing, it's just like, "Oh, I have a horrible dreadful secret that everyone would hate me for." And suddenly, oranges.

You also have a thing with weirdly phrased sentences.
>Sixteen rows of apple trees had been bucked, the leaky pipe had been fixed, and the pigs had been fed, a busy day indeed for the young mare.
That one just sounds off. Maybe:
>Sixteen rows of apple trees had been bucked... and the young mare was exhausted.
>Applejack had to secretly dress up and slip into town under cover of a different name, Berryjill, and purchase this assortment of fruits without getting caught.
replace "and" with "to"
>no obsessed with her next orange meal
^ doesn't really make sense to me
>Apples were good, but after so many years of nothing but apple related recipes would drive any pony crazy
Another that sounds a little odd
Finally:
>Especially her.
I used to do this all the time, but than I realized that hacked-off sentences are just obnoxious. If you really want to make a point of how much AJ hates this pony, you could smoosh it into the previous sentence.

You also have a problem with lavender unicorn syndrome. Using "She" or "Applejack" isn't a sin, and it seems like you try and avoid using those two words a lot.
>> No. 115494
(Here's my pathetic little continuation to the previous review...)
A couple examples:
>The orange mare kicked a hoof against the ground, dust and dirt puffing up into the air.
>An orange pony called out to her older brother. The young mare whistled to herself as she marched along the dirt path leading from the apple fields to the cellar underneath the barn. The sun beat down on the blond haired cowpony
(That last one especially- its the first couple lines and Applejack's name isn't mentioned once.)

You have a couple sentences that just drop off here and there-I tried to find them, but I gave up. Really, your only problems are grammatical errors. I get that it's supposed to be a big deal over one little secret, but I didn't really feel how big of a deal it is.

One last thing: though the last line is cute, it is so cliche. I have a feeling you wrote the fanfic based off of that line and that one picture.

Despite all the above, this was really a good read. I'm just the kind of person that gets hung up on errors like these, all it needs is some TLC and an experienced reviewer, since my review really means nothing. Hope I helped!
>> No. 115510
>>115494
You did fine. All you're being asked to do is give your opinion and point out any mistakes you might find.

That said, this author is at two strikes, so I'd recommend getting at least one more detailed review before trying EqD again. It's usually good practice to get at least two.
>> No. 115514
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115514
Review's in the doc: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1fRa8e9YXV00rrsO6TRigIMApMp1iPmsORIWgAkph5sc/edit
>> No. 115515
Okay, this is my first review. Ever. I'm going to try and be gentle and constructive about this, but I'm going to apologize in advance for any bruised egos or hurt feelings. I don't really have any formal or technical expertise when it comes to writing, but I fancy myself good at it. Sort of a blue-collar writer. But I'll give it my best shot.

Let's begin with the grammar.
Straight from the beginning I noticed a struggle with comma placement that continued to precipitate itself throughout the piece. In particular, commas on the end of quotes, and within the transition between quotes. Quotes are very rarely viable sentences in of themselves, unless a significant pace of dialogue has been reached between two characters. So, quotes are often partnered in a conjoined sentence with narrative; some sort of action the speaker takes, in order to identify them. You have that part down pat, avoiding what I've seen other reviewers call 'talking-head syndrome'. The characters are moving and acting as they speak, as any pony would. Are they acting as they would? I'll cover that later. But back to quotes. They should be part of the sentence of the action of the speaker. You nailed the execution in a few areas:

>"Tell you what," proposed Scootaloo, rubbing her hooves with a sly smile, "how about we dump the problem... I mean we ask someone smarter about it?"
>"Well, yeah, if ya think it's alright," said Applebloom, a hint of uncertainty audible in her voice.

The quote should flow into the action, and back into the quote as needed. You did well here, but stumbled in more than you succeeded.
Moving on from quotes, there were also a few run-on sentences and a few dropped words that need addressing. None of them were particularly detracting, but cleaning them up will only serve to better the piece. Here's one of the worst ones:

>she had finally calculated the right amount of energy needed to transform an ordinary slice of bread into a perfect toast.
>an ordinary slice of bread into a perfect toast.
>a perfect toast.

Cheers? Here's another one, same paragraph:

>The librarian quickly emptied the water from the nearby flowerpot onto the burning paper.
>the water from the nearby flowerpot
>water
>flowerpot

Last I checked, flowerpots had dirt in them. Admittedly, dirt would still suffice, but it jarred me on my second pass though. Anyway. One of the best ways I've found to find and correct run-ons and other general grammar faux-pas, is to read your work aloud. No, seriously, read your work aloud. It might seem silly, but writing is, fundamentally, speech committed to paper, and it should read as such. When you're reading your own work in your head, your head'll have a habit of filling in blanks that your mouth won't. Anywhere you stumble in speaking your story, take a closer look. Sometimes, it's not even a grammatical error, but you just come up with a more natural way of saying something, by speaking it aloud. My favorite trick is something I call the breath test, which will help with run-ons. Read through a line aloud, and where ever you naturally pause to take a breath, stick a comma.
Finally, word choice. I'm going to ignore the onomatopoeias, because I have a personal bias against them, and that wouldn't be fair to detract for something I simply dislike. There's nothing technically wrong with them. Just not to my taste. Otherwise, your vocabulary was diverse and robust, with only a handful of repetition. Excellent work in this regard, but there is some work to be done.

Tl;dr – grammar was consistent and understandable, but felt a touch dry and pieced together, like a jigsaw. Smooth out the edges and put in a little polish, and you should be good to go.
8/10

Moving on to the plot. Hopefully I won't be quite so long winded with this one. This reviewing stuff is hard.
The story started off well enough; crusader's causing mischief. Typical, and familiar, which is good to open a story with. But you begin to hit some rough patches later in. Perfect slice of toast aside, (which I'll admit I got a chuckle out of) there was some continuity issues that gave me pause. Not within your story, or even within canon, but simply within logic. It's the Ponyville Public Library. Yes, Twilight lives there, but why would the crusaders knock? If there is a reason (say, it's Sunday, and the library is closed to the public) it should be established at some point prior. Moving forward – now brace yourself, I don't have a way to put this lightly – the story felt like a quick one-two punch of old plot clichés and quotes. To rub salt in the wound, the Elements are a tad quick to accept that Twilight has gone mad. “Again”. How many times has Twilight really dove off the deep end? I count twice in the series. Barely. Fluttershy has gone crazy more times than the resident bookworm. But everypony has just nodded their heads and accepted that Twilight's gone wonkers. At the behest of the CMC, no less, who, let's face it, are not the most reliable source of information. (Especially after episode 2-23) The story stepped up a peg with the continuity nod to Episode 1-15, Rainbow having not been privy to Twilight's Rapidash impression. Spike being gone felt as though it came out of left field, but he has been known to vanish from time to time, so I'm willing to give a pass on that. The conclusion felt decidedly deus ex machina, but it was Pinkie, after all, and I found it appropriate that a baker would solve a riddle based around units of measurements. Kudos there.

Tl;dr – plot had an obvious, linear path it was following, which is good in a short story, but I think Pinkie jumped a few pages in the script somewhere. Aside from the critical flaw of pigeon-holing the cast toward the library, the plot is solid. Pad it and patch it up, and run it past another reviewer.
7/10

Gotta take a deep breath here. Your characterization is next and last, and I don't have nice things to say, unfortunately. Sorry. You... may want to skip to the tl;dr.
Let's run through a checklist, in chronological order. I'll admit I'm running out of steam at this point. Scootaloo: rambunctious tomboy? Check. Sweeite Belle: thoughtless doof? Check. Applebloom: ringleader? Check. Twilight: odd experiments? Check. But blasphemes? No check. I can't see her doing it. She has too much respect for her teacher, mentor, and sovereign. CMC: deafening? Check. Twilight: prideful and determined? Check. Lying to the CMC? If Twilight has ever lied, it's been through omission. No check. CMC again: wrecking balls? Check. Applebloom: condescending in the face of failure? Check. Instigator of a new direction? I think she stole Scoot's line. Twilight: mad hatter? Eeeh, half-check. It has happened before, but under the most extreme of duress. Her reaction seems a tad overblown, which is hard to swallow, as it's the crux of the story, and happens so suddenly. Explosive backfires? I'd really like to know where this tread in Twilight fics originated from, because I don't think it's ever happened. Ever. Someone please prove me wrong. I feel like a monster at this point. Applejack: straight to the point? Check, if a little railroaded. Rarity: snippy with her sister? Check. Fluttershy … didn't really do much. Rainbow: cocky and casual? Check. Railroaded, but check. Pinkie: outta nowhere?! Over-check. Her obtuseness is played so hard and heavy it felt like a literary back hand. Twilight: PHENOMINAL COSMIC POWER, itty-bitty problem? Check. Rainbow: easily insulted and hotheaded? Check. Applejack: rational and calm? Check. Rarity: simpering little quitter? I know she has no record of being anywhere near as powerful as Twilight is in the magical department, and it's generally accepted that Twilight could wipe the floor with Rarity if she saw fit, I don't see it in Rarity to just roll over like that. Also:

>"They are very good with dispells."

I can sense I'm beginning to get cranky, and I imagine you get my point by now, assuming you didn't take my advice and just skip right to the score at the end. Which I wouldn't blame you for. I've been a royal bastard for this part, and I dare anyone to say otherwise. But I am not impressed by your representation of the show's characters. Remember that these are established characters, with detailed backgrounds and a wealth of experience within the confines of the show itself. Characters that readers are familiar with, intimately so, and the slightest deviation from that familiarity will turn the reader against the story. It isn't impossible to craft a different or perhaps even an entirely new persona for an established character, but it takes time. Time that isn't available in a short story. With just over five-thousand words, you have maybe five-hundred to impress me and keep me reading, and things did not go as planned. This wasn't the Twilight Sparkle I was expecting, and for only five-thousand words, I can afford to be discerning in my tastes. Pinkie suffered similarly, but in the opposite direction.

Tl;dr – characterization of canon characters has to be near flawless to succeed in short stories, in my humble opinion. And trust me, it is very humble. I'm sorry, but I think this is your weakest area. Rewatch the series some. Spot pick some episodes and follow characters for a bit, get a feel for them.
4/10

God, I feel like I tore this poor story to pieces. Please don't hate me... T-T
>> No. 115516
File 134456861145.png - (583.84KB , 1194x670 , 17043.png )
115516
Yo! I finally finished this damned fanfic! So, off I go!

Title: Before the Dawn
Author: Figments
Email: [email protected]
Tags: Dark (Maybe?), Adventure (Still kinda iffy)

Synopsis: Plagued by visions of a mysterious figure, Twilight sets out to find a creature that calls itself Iliad. Yet after one of her friends is taken by the very being, the Elements are in for their greatest challenge yet. Can Twilight solve the riddle of her dreams, or will she be forced to confront the biggest decision that she never wanted to make?

Link:

Requiem: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1yP7df1jrmYRaJsPgh-x973tU1EvPJrL6sMpgIiti-pI/edit

Comments 'n' stuffs: I've been really unsure whether or not I should start the story a few days prior to this one, to kind of set it up a bit. An input on this is really appreciated.
>> No. 115522
File 134457258415.png - (106.46KB , 900x513 , 132653746338.png )
115522
okay, I'd be grateful for any impressions on this:

title: the chess master (part one)

word count: 5k

genre: comedy

synopsis: a work of satire inspired by "May the Best Pet Win". Rainbow Dash enters a chess tournament at Ponyville Elementary to help out the CMC in a pinch, and prove once and for all that she's got what it takes to be a chess master!

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1UjpBlq3GT5Efr_LfKjit_so_lWsfBP-FcmTzV01yMVI/edit

my e-mail: [email protected]
>> No. 115525
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115525
>>113951

This took around 12 days. Eh, I've done worse. =

Disclaimer: the following review is the sole opinion of yours truly. Yours truly is not an authority on the art of writing by a long shot; you're free to apply as much or as little of this as you feel like, and the one thing I hope is that you take away from this something that'll aid you in your future projects. I won't lie: this is largely personal preference, and I'm finding it hard to be objective as I type this up.

Trivia: the original review, V1, was a beast that looked far too deeply into it, trying to apply analysis and comparison to a lot of aspects of this. It took me an hour and a half to write until I realized that I was being silly, hence, the V2 up there.

Most of my comments are in-doc, and you've seen them already. Here's a couple of tangentially-related things that you might find interesting:

1) There is no re-read value
Because the impact of the fic is in the over-the-top action, the craziness of the premise and the punchline, which dies as soon as it is revealed (e.g. the punchline for Blueshift's "Two Peas in a Pod"), re-reading it only serves to dull the action. At the end of re-reading it, one find the punchline which ceases to be a punchline. I think this fic can be classified as the same sort of tale accompanied by the phrase "You had to be there" - immersion is heavily reliant on the reader hanging on every word, and when it's over, I left with the feeling "well, that was nice", but no more. And it's very hard to squeeze any more out of readers without establishing Akuma a lot more, and by doing so you change the overall mood and even thesis of the story, and then...

2) Serious reading is the bane of reader immersion
It's a light-hearted romp that doesn't stand to cold analysis. I'll give you an example, quoted from V1 of the review:

>Kurt Vonnegut's 8 rules of writing fiction: Every sentence must do one of two things—reveal character or advance the action.
>There's a lot of action, but it doesn't actually advance quickly per se. I can summarize your story into, like, eight sentences. That's how much you harp on "THIS IS FIGHTING", but that's because your sentences are there to paint a picture. There's not a lot of revealing character, but if generic fighting-game character profiles are anything to go by, there isn't a lot of character to reveal in the first place.

Most readers don't analyze like this, but for the few who do, questions like these will start popping up into a bubbling pool of discomfort. And that usually has them signing off to brood more.

Your plot:
Akuma fights Ryu. Akuma defeats Ryu. Akuma looks for stronger opponent and is sent to Equestria. Akuma attempts to fight Pinkie and is overcome when Pinkie hugs him. Akuma returns to his own world with a figurine; cue sunset ending.

Simple enough, wacky, and I can't really complain.

Your characters:
Akuma's all right, though he feels like a cardboard cut-out, as is most of the cast of these games (close-minded generalization warning). He's angry and evil, and is played more for comedic effect than a point for reader empathy. That's what your premise requires. Pinkie is done pretty well, too, though I feel that you should build-up her warming up to him more gradually.

What I felt after reading this:
To be blunt? Not much. I mean, it's fun, it's action-y, and there were some legitimately funny moments in there. But the end wasn't really heartwarming for me (that could just be me and my lack of feels, or maybe it wasn't meant to be heartwarming) and I daresay that it didn't really stand out. And really, this type of story doesn't - it comes and goes like the wind because of the lack of events and character to empathize with.

Refer to the part titled "Your plot". That is literally what happens after 4k+ words. There's a lot of actions, yes, but nothing actually happening, if that makes sense. There doesn't need to be; just saying. And the part quoted above sums up my insignificant gripes about Akuma's character - he functions, but is nothing more than that.

Conclusion:
I feel rather bad because I don't think I've managed to help you much. This isn't the sort of story that I can subject to standard analysis, since it's supposed to be light-hearted, and to be honest, it actually isn't my type of story. I want to enjoy it, but trying to pick apart what makes it work and what doesn't has killed that for me. It's definitely better than the majority of fics out there, but on its own, it's adequate. I'm not sure whether that's what you want, or whether you want it to be something more - if the latter is the case, then I'm sorry that I can't help you achieve that without major changes to your style and premise.

Your style, tone and premise have resulted in your fic being quite a different beast compared to Generic Pony Fiction X. It's unique in these terms, I'll give you that. But that's because this, I believe, is a SF fanfic with ponies, and not an MLP fanfic with SF - it's centred on a lot more SF elements than MLP's, even though non-fans should be able to enter it easily.

In conclusion, your fic does what it set out to do, and does as much justice to the premise as it can, and that's the best anyone can ask for, really. Any negativity or weariness you may sense in the above isn't because of you - it's because I've been trying to figure out how to improve this, and I ultimately can't come up with anything. And that, I'd say, is a good thing. Keep writing.
>> No. 115527
File 134457557214.jpg - (19.41KB , 480x360 , actually.jpg )
115527
>>115515
You did just fine - you told him what you thought of as a reader, what he needed to hear, and gave him advice on how to improve. You've even got a nice section-by-section formatting complete with score.
>> No. 115529
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115529
>>115494
It helped a lot! Thanks for taking the time to work on this.

I will work on this and i plan on using your suggestions. again thanks!
>> No. 115531
File 134457858619.jpg - (88.68KB , 800x566 , cmc as adults.jpg )
115531
Hello ttg. Its been a while hasn't it. Indeed, despite the warnings of numerous medical professionals I've decided to continue my endeavors to become the worst writer here on /fic. So without further ado I give you the lastest abomination to come from my ill mind.

Title: To Be Young Again
Tags: Slice of Life (I do a lot of these)
Word Count: 3101
Synopsis: Feeling pushed away by her fellow crusaders now that they are grown up, Apple Bloom is willing to do anything to get them back together.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1geV0SF-1VDNfLEv89dLOYoJRaGvZ8PTuT59-GLlS6Ec/edit

Comments: I'm a shit writer so expect problems. Also my partner Seidio has agreed to look at it but he's got business to take care of before I want him to even consider looking at my fic.
>> No. 115534
>>115531
I can take a look at this for you. I should be able to get back to you before the weekend is over, if not a little after. excelsior!
>> No. 115547
File 134458489443.png - (72.94KB , 480x429 , mlfw632_130998747586.png )
115547
>>115531
>> No. 115555
File 134458868102.jpg - (75.71KB , 400x300 , fry.jpg )
115555
>>115547
>> No. 115556
File 134459030643.jpg - (7.58KB , 184x184 , patchy.jpg )
115556
>>115547
>has a story titled "Moving On"
>>115531
>story title implies not wanting to move on

I find this more amusing than I should...
>> No. 115558
File 134459304381.jpg - (16.91KB , 311x400 , Akuma_Street_Fighter_.jpg )
115558
>>115525
Thank you so much for this review. If it had entertainment value for someone who's never played the Street Fighter series, I'm certain it will thrill the die-hards. And I can't disagree with you when you say this was a Street Fighter fic with ponies, I think you hit that square on the nose. Aside from that, you were an awesome reviewer, but the Dark Night Rises is still a terrible Batman movie. Not a terrible movie, but a terrible batman movie.
>> No. 115572
File 134460276907.png - (58.57KB , 217x176 , This is closer to the truth while being so far_.png )
115572
Greetings, I have a challenge for you:

Title: Living the Life
Tags: Slice of Life, Awesomeness

Synopsis: Once upon a time, a pegasi asked her friends why they worried about the past or the future so much, and if they couldn’t just live their lives without worrying so much about trivial things like that.

They said no.

So she rode a motorcycle and fucked cute fillies, and drank cider, vodka and wine, and broke some tables in bars, and came and kicked Rainbow Dash’s sorry ass, and joined the Wonderbolts while wearing pants, and went to concerts with people half her age, and dance with those that were twice, and told everyone to stop begin such sorry crybabies because time passes or they were going to die or you don't think anyone understands you, and went around without having to worry about angst, and she rode into the sunset because fuck you artsy pony and your gay wings, and left the toilet seat up because fuck that too.

These are her stories.


Comments: I can be silly at times. Rarely, but yes, it is possible. And yes, I did have help with this, apparently I am "too reserved."

Apologies to everyone.

Also, just in case it is not clear, this is Scootaloo we are speaking of.
>> No. 115574
File 134460498931.jpg - (71.52KB , 638x627 , Spittake.jpg )
115574
>>115572
>Also, just in case it is not clear, this is Scootaloo we are speaking of.
>pic
>> No. 115575
File 134460514222.jpg - (4.17KB , 125x125 , ehhhhhh.jpg )
115575
>>115572
>someone posting as Samurai anon
>forgets link to story
So much conflicting feelings, I don't even know.
>> No. 115578
A nice concept and nice ending. However, yes, it does need work on execution.

This is full of ideas, practically bursting with them, but you need now to go back through and tone some of them back because while some ideas work, others really don't.

Here's a bigger review:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Y8HrHblKg8Zt4BqYWwsCMdiGGYf0YyPGZrh2WtwHGDE/edit
>> No. 115582
>>115578
Wow. Well then, I have my work cut out for me. I'm making a mental note to stick to shipping.

Thanks for this, everything makes good sense. I'm off to sort through it all.
>> No. 115584
This is a kinda-sorta update for my fic, Homework is for home (>>115340).
I was feeling pretty confident so I decided to send it in to EQD to get their opinion. Long story short, my fic falls short of their minimum words by 300, so I told them this in the comments section. I got an email back saying that they do make exceptions to the minimum words for amazing fics, which mine isn't. I don't know if they think it's the worst thing they ever read, or if it could be posted if it met the minimum words, I don't even know if that counts as a strike (but I'm guessing it does).
If you want to review my story, or if you just looked over it, I would be so grateful if you could tell me how to A) add 300 words or B) Make my fanfic perfect.

Thanks for dealing with me!
>> No. 115585
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115585
>>115340
That sounds awfully short. Why not simply introduce a new challenge?

Manga, at least, follows stages in its storyline:
Introduction of conflict -> challenges to solving conflict -> resolution of conflict

where each new chapter that prolongs an arc is based around the introduction/development/resolution of said challenge.

I did a skim-through and it's basically class slice-of-life. An antagonistic, attention-seeking boy colt who sits behind Spark who tries to distract her? Somepony who keeps on passing notes in the corner of her eye? Daydreaming? I'm sure there are a few ways for you to add to your story, each bringing their own strengths to your characters and the overall situation.
>> No. 115604
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115604
>>115340
This looks cute, and I'm in a reviewin' mood. I'll see what I can do to suggest ways to make it longer for EqD, if that seems necessary. Claiming!

Your fic is short, so expect my review shortly. Reviewer doc: http://derpy.me/uQgc1
>> No. 115606
File 134462650676.jpg - (127.35KB , 1280x1024 , Lyra132640934273.jpg )
115606
[Shipping][Comedy][Human-in-Equestria]

Synopsis: Bored with high school, Lyra's life changes when she's brought to Equestria and turned into a mint-green pony with a magical horn bulging out of her head. After an embarrassing incident, Bon Bon decides to help Lyra adjust to life as a pony.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1RbahWiTAo5hs7agHgG6I-y8aaHW7b_v7zg493SrueMQ/edit

From EqD: The concept of Lyra being an inexplicably transformed human is novel enough on a basic level, and that's a good thing, as it means the story as a whole is salvageable. However, novelty will wear off quickly without a strong narrative and engaging characters to revel in it, and so far those seem to be what this piece is lacking. We get no real sense of who Lyra is as a character, nor of why her parents might've chosen to give her the name Lyra in the first place, a moniker that despite Bon-Bon's protestations still sounds more appropriate for the MLP universe than ours. And beyond that, each of the experiences she has within Ponyville that might've helped develop her is rushed through too quickly to hardly even understand what's going on, let alone why it's important to the plot. The lack of any noticeable transitions certainly doesn't help to make the narrative any easier to follow.
>> No. 115607
>>115425
I'm gonna take this, run off for a little bit, and come back later today. A few hours at most. It sounds like your issues are primarily mechanical, and I'm decent at catching those.

However, since I am in not a reviewer in any real capacity and you have a precious chance for a miracle, I'm going to recommend that after I'm done you pass it off to one more person. This is an opportunity I'd absolutely hate to cause you to waste.

Nobody touch this. I'll be back soonish.
>> No. 115612
>>115585
>>115604
Thanks to both of yah!
Casca, that really helps and I just might use one of those ideas :D
>> No. 115613
File 134462893193.png - (190.40KB , 500x500 , tumblr_m7arbgfQfc1rs0wfoo1_500.png )
115613
>>115340
That was cute and I liked it. You took question about a small detail from the show that most people probably hadn't even noticed (why does Twilight look so different from her parents) and gave it a sweet, funny backstory that also goes some way to answer a question that people probably have asked (why's Twi so traumatised by magic kindergarten?).

Your writing had a bunch of odd tense errors, some awkward and verbose wordings of a few things, the tiniest strain of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome (but, in fairness, you made that work for you because of how important coat colours were to the plot) and a few other miscellaneous errors, but it didn't make me tear my hair out in anguish. In any case, I've discussed all this language and style stuff at length in http://derpy.me/EznGuide

On making it longer: I'm afraid many of my wording suggestions probably chipped away at your fic's length, rather than adding to it. But here are some suggestions for extending the fic:

1. This bit:
>Their discussion was like a ping-pong match, Dream Charmer tossing out a positive, Twilight rebounding with a cynical twist. It continued for a while, during which the custodian came and cleaned up the mess on the floor and the rest of the students continued with their work.
It's rather telly. Consider, if it wouldn't overextend the joke, showing us more of Twilight and Dream's banter (it sounds rather entertaining.), perhaps interspersed with the custodian grumblinh about the mess.

2. Casca's suggestion of daydreaming is a good one – perhaps there's something you can do to subtly foreshadow Spark's true identity?

3. This bit:
>The yellow filly rolled her eyes.
>They sat at their cleaned desks,
I feel like there should be more of a transition between these scenes.

4. Apart from that, you could also extend Sparky and Dream's pre-class conversation, and even include a few snippets of the teacher's droning in the different lessons. You could have Dream ask Sparky for help with maths, or any number of other things. Just keep it light and have fun making jokes and letting your characters interact with each other.

And that's all I've got. Good luck with your fic, and I do hope this was useful!
>> No. 115618
>>115613
Thank you so much! That was very useful and pointed out a lot of stuff I didn't notice. I added a little piece about two ponies passing notes Sparky ratting them out, and I think I will add something about daydreaming.
Thanks again!
>> No. 115628
>>115607
I return. I have words about words.

>on a world elsewhere in the cosmos not too dissimilar to our own
This is awkward because we have no reference frame from which to look away and find any elsewhere. The word elsewhere works a lot like "meanwhile" in that you can't just say meanwhile Y. You need an X first.

>the Equestrian race
I'm not personally a fan of this, but I don't think it's especially in need of changing.

>in the seemingly most
I haven't got any suggestions for what to do here instead, but seemingly most strikes me as an unusual combination of words. It doesn't look wrong, but I did stumble over it.

>another adjective...panic
Your prereader had two problems with this. Susceptibility to panic is not an adjective. It's a phrase or a trait. The other complaint was the way you broke this apart with a colon and a fragment completing the thought as its own paragraph. I feel less strongly that this is problematic. It's a stylistic choice that bends or breaks some rules, but it can work. "Adjective" though? Yeah, no.

>Such was the case
What was, the description of the ponies? That doesn't work well like that. "X is a nice guy. Such was the case when..." doesn't really flow. Also, such was the case is a bit of a stuffy, passive phrase. Looking ahead, I'm seeing several more passive passages. There were one or two above as well.

>weather teams from Cloudsdale has no
Teams has. Plural noun doing the verbing needs a different form of the verb.

>to their heart's content
This could be argued, but I would tell you that you should use their hearts' content instead. Each of them has a heart, so the plural hearts are the collective to which the content belongs.

>and a odd high pitched
You want an odd, not a odd. You also want to hyphenate high-pitched. You ALSO probably want a comma between the two so that you end up with an odd, high-pitched result. I notice that high-pitched was pointed out in the latest prereader's notes, as well as a few other things that haven't been touched yet. I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you just haven't combed back through with the latest feedback YET and that you didn't miss it after it was already pointed out.

>quirked an eyebrow
The ol' eyebrow quirk is a fundamental sign of confusion that definitely works here. HOWEVER, I'd actually suggest using something else because I'm ridiculous sometimes. I say that an eyebrow quirk is more of a social signal than a natural response. Something that's done to illustrate to the other people/ponies around you what you think. Since there are no others around... This is really, REALLY minor and safe to ignore entirely, but something to consider nonetheless.

>And she was certain
Starting a sentence with an and or an or or a but is all well and good, but only if done sparingly. One good way to check whether or not you have a candidate for it is to ask yourself if the sentence in question has any impact. In this case, I would say no. It's a plain description of a simple fact that isn't particularly surprising. Fluttershy doesn't know this plant. That's okay, and it's important that we know this, but it's no grand revelation or anything. This little bit of information isn't significant enough to warrant a special case like the period space and you have going on now.

>the seeming smile
Who are you, Shakespeare? The seeming X is... purple and flowery aren't quite the right words, but something like that. It's forcefully erudite.

>was so...nice
An ellipsis used as a pause is generally accepted as needing a space afterward. When it's used to omit unneeded text from something more like a quote, the waters get murkier, so ignore when I do that here. What YOU'RE doing is pretty well agreed to need a space on the tail end (and some would argue at the head as well.)

>she cooed, setting
Careful. You already said cooed just a tiny handful of sentences ago. Not too egregious, but if I see a third one before long it'll be upsetting.

>–
As long as you're consistent (and we shall see if you are...) this is okay, but this is a strong scene break and a single character doesn't feel very strong to me.

>chided with a small
Your prereader claimed this was an example of an inappropriate direct object. Poppycock! There IS no direct object in play here. Celestia chided. She did so with a smirk on her face. Whether or not the direct object is specifically required is supposed to depend on the transitivity of the verb, but not being a grammar nut I say this is fine as is.

>thou...I mean
Again, space after this pausing punctuation.

>Twas not the moon
As with the scene breaks, I will not argue specifically against this (though I do think it should be 'twas) but I will berate you for any lack of consistency on the matter... like the 'Twas an inch down the page. Select one and stick with it.

>'Twas not the moon
As I just said.

>Celestia rose form the
From the, yes?

>surprised herself by
This one is a bit sticky. Being surprised BY something tends to be more passive or past tense. I was surprised by X. I don't think this is technically wrong, but I personally would use something more like "surpised herself with" instead.

>for centuries, Luna
And has Celestia? If so, who ruled in her absence? Who maanged the sun and moon?

>that wasn't a meteor or asteroid
How can we logically conclude this? Sure, if it wasn't the moon it had to have been a different heavenly body and hence something from out there, but where do we get that it couldn't have been a meteor or something like that? If the argument is based on how complete the eclipse was or how long it lasted, then that's still a problem because unless the object was HUGE or REALLY close to the planet, it wouldn't have been anything like a lunar eclipse.

>once again you are the only one
Once again? While Luna was gone, somepony else was capable of it? Who and why?

>Celestia opened her mouth...returned the nuzzle
This paragraph is a list of actions. X then Y then Z. Structurally repetitive.

>Which was why
Like before with the ands and ors and buts, this can be done but needs a good reason. This is a logical next step. Ask the farmer. It's not powerful or surprising enough to warrant such a bold step over the bounds of the language.

>'cutie mark crusading,'
You'll want double quotes here not single. The siren song of double for dialogue and single for... whatever the linguistic equivalent of airquotes is... is quite powerful, but it is incorrect. Note that when you make airquotes with your fingers, you DO still use two on each side.

>With the speed available
Mmm... not sure here. I don't want to recommend adding extraneous words, but "the" alone feels off to me. I keep thinking something more along the lines of "the sort of speed."

>glad to...After the badgers
Your prereader seemed saddened by the lack of this scene, but I've got a separate complaint. You didn't use a scene break, strong or weak. It looks exactly like the difference between any other paragraphs.

>like a flytrap, so I figured
How does that figuring make any sense? Calling attention to a thing and then saying so-and-so might be of use implies so-and-so is an expert on that thing. What does Twilight know about flytraps that'd cause any of her friends to turn to her for advice? She was used because books, not because plants.

>in her saddle bags
Just a minute ago you used saddlebag as one word. Pick one and stick with it. Consistency is sometimes even more important than correctness.

>lost in "research mode."
So you DO make proper use of this... then earlier was just one more in a long line of difficulties with consistency?

>when you found it...since I found it
Definitely too close together. Repeating a word isn't always a sin, but it's best to cut back whenever possible.

>going to...die?
Space it up.

>and offering their own
They knew and offering. The tense here flips. Since you clearly want to progress into the offering rather than just state they ofered (it wasn't long before...) I would say you need a glue verb in the right tense. They knew and started offering or knew and began offering. That smooths it over.

>Although...brand of logic
The although sets us up to expect a closing clause. Although I hate X, I love Y. The two things here don't match up quite right for that kind of sentence. Either strip out the although, reform the second clause, or break it into two sentences. I realize this might not even have been the structure you were going for here, but that's how it reads. Using although for something besides what I've described here is possible, but your two clauses hide the original intent.

>I'll get...something.
Spaaaaaace.

>stabbing pain...scratched herself.
Silly and nitpicky, but whenever I cut myself on a sharp edge by accident it feels... I don't know, but not really like a stab. A cutting pain or a scratching pain don't sound too good, though. Not sure what to recommend other than ignoring this because it's silly.

>to it's normal dormant
It's is a contraction of it and is, not a possessive dealy.

>more vibrant and beautiful
If space is so great, why was Celestia worried about Luna going there earlier?

>still early days into the
Awkward. Less awkward if changed to still IN the early days, but still not perfect.


Okay, so you have quite a few minor errors, the beginnings of both chapters were a bit too passive, and you definitely have a few consistency issues. The passivity is something you can fix without too much trouble, but given how many times little things crept up and slipped by you, I'd advise you to recruit a team of one or more willing editors to help you catch these things. I won't comment on the similarity of the blood scene to the original, since you're already planning to rework that anyway.

But that's really it. Mechanical errors aside, your writing is generally enjoyable. There were a few bits between Celestia and Luna that I might question, but I did and you could address those. Really, you're doing pretty well. I've pointed to the specific problems I see here now so you can fix them, but you also want future chapters to turn out good. The issues I'd describe as systemic are the overly passive openings and the consistent consistency problems. The first is easy enough to fix if you just pay special attention to your work and count the number of times you say had or was or were. For the second, I guess you either need to quadruple check your work or hire some help.

Fix what I've pointed at, then run the result by someone else. Let's make a miracle.
>> No. 115629
>>115613
>>115585
Thanks to you guys, I know have 2,599 words, which is 99 over the one-shot minimum! Thanks so much for your help!
>> No. 115630
File 134463609710.png - (99.88KB , 220x329 , tumblr_lox211BPJv1qm2frqo1_250.png )
115630
>>115516Before The DawnFigments

Well, been a while since I did in depth critiques, used to be a mod over on the WTG on DA. Want to start giving back to the writing community again, so I'll give this fic a shot.

Hope I can be helpful.
>> No. 115631
>>115250

Sorry for the delay in getting back to you; I was kind of waiting for you to take a look at the second chapter.

Thanks for your comments :) I'll keep that 'two questions' idea in mind for the re-write :)

(Although, I'd just like to point out that those double quotes are something I was told to use when one of my other stories was edited... by an EqD Pre-reader.)
>> No. 115632
>>115630
And your picture just gave me a heart attack. I need to know where you found it.
>> No. 115640
Before I begin, I'd like to say that I've basically started over on this story thanks to the advice of one Khakispony. I came to the realization thanks to his advice that one of the crucial characters was miscast. Subsequently, I've decided to make a kinder, gentler, and saner character the voice of reason. That being said, this chapter is virtually unchanged. So let's not waste any time, shall we?

Title: The RED Cataclysm
Tags: Comedy, Crossover, Dark, Human, Tragedy
Synopsis: After angering a magician (again), the RED Engineer, Medic and Pyro are sent to an alternate universe (again) where they must survive among the confused and scared natives until the portal is able to return them home (again). All in all, just an average day on the job. Or it would've been, if it hadn't been for a certain cunning, manipulative and dashingly handsome spirit. (A crossover with Team Fortress 2.)
Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1KeevDXxQNb_lirZ1hswQIr4URtVogLUsgrxV7vLA-Do/edit
Word Count: 4861

Thanks in advance!
>> No. 115646
>115516

So yeah, been a while since I reviewed. Hope this helps.

> “No living soul was present”
I’m not sure the ‘living soul’ is really necessary in there, just a ‘no one’ or ‘no pony’. The ‘living soul’ makes it sound overly dramatic for so early in the fic.

Mom and Dad don’t need to be capitalised.

>”Twilight nodded, and followed him out”
Comma shouldn’t be there.

>”Big brother?”She came up to his side
Space needed between the quotation mark and ‘She’.

>”She came up to his side, and looked up at his face.”
Same as before.

By about the point the fog began to appear in the fic and you made certain to mention how alone they were and how odd Shining Armour was acting, I immediately thought of Silent Hill.

>”It wasn’t a big shop, at least from what she was expecting it to be.”
“It wasn’t a big shop, at least compared to what she had expected it to be like” – Not perfect in itself but your version is worded awkwardly.

>”A heavy stench loomed in the air, and she tried to prevent herself from vomiting.”
What does it smell like? What is it? Blood? Rot? Vomit? Faeces? ‘Heavy’ doesn’t accurate convey any form of terror or dread because it could really mean anything, from body odour to too much sugar.

>”Shining looked down at her, and smiled”
I’d advise you to check out this website, it’s pretty useful for this kinda thing: http://www.getitwriteonline.com/archive/020204whencommabfand.htm

>”He stood frozen in time, his jaw fixed slightly ajar as he stared straight head”
I’d end the sentence there, the unwavering is implied by ‘frozen in time’.

>”Big brother?” she nudged him gently,”
Should be a capital ‘she’.

>”Shining, why aren’t you answering me?”
Dialogue feels forced, Twilight does talk more formally than a lot of characters, even as a filly but it feels awkward. Something as simple as “Shining, what’s wrong? Speak to me!” or if you want to continue the same kinda set up, just go with a ‘why won’t you speak to me?’.

>”Twilight stared up at the black mass, backing up slowly towards the door”
‘Twilight stared up at the black mass as she slowly backed up towards the door’ or swap the ‘slowly’ before the ‘backing up’ to make it read better.

>”Who…?” was the only thing that escaped her trembling lips.
Before what? The sentence feels empty, like it’s missing the ending where it says what the creature did to stop the rest of her speech.

The description of Iliad’s claw across her seems too blunt, for it being seemingly the first time the villain really makes an approach and outright touches her, there is little description. You point out his smell but we don’t know what he smells like. He has a claw but we only know its colour, not its feel or anything that might imply the danger that comes with it or the beast beyond.

>”She opened the window, expecting the warm comfort of daylight to fill her home. Instead…”
The two sentences could just be connected by a semi-colon.

When Twilight is writing, I think it shouldn’t be in quotation marks, go instead with simple italics.

>”undisturbed – peaceful, even.”
Doesn’t need the comma.

Tartarus is the prison for monsters from what I remember, it seems odd to threaten to send ponies there instead of somewhere like ‘The Canterlot Dungeons’.

>”Because for the past week, you’ve always had that book with you”
That line just feels really expositional and forced, try and think of the character, if you can’t imagine Spike saying it, he wouldn’t. “Because you’ve had that book with you all week!”

Twilight denying having the book just seems odd, denying having the dream, fine, but the book is just sitting around, seems like a weird thing to deny having.

>”Twilight, tell me the truth.”
You have a habit of making characters seem quite formal which makes the dialogue feel forced.

Why did the plate smash? Did she press too hard on it or something? It’s implied but it just comes out of nowhere when you don’t mention any magical surges or anything.

Spike describing the report of the newspaper is weird, about the last area being completely empty? I don’t really get what he means. They were last seen in an empty place? Who spotted them? How? Why were they there? Why was an important, noble pony like Octavia randomly in an ‘empty’ place? Was it empty of people? Then who saw them? Empty of… everything else? What kinda place was this? It just seems a very awkward thing to say.

I realise the descriptions are meant to be vague, it’s a horror, horror plays off imagination more than real facts for a lot of people, but a sentence like “something in her eyes, something that looked like it was trying to grab me”. What’s that meant to be? It’s simply too undefined for me to feel anything about it. Spike also brushes it aside quite easily for his friend and ‘mother’ throwing herself across the room in fear at what she saw when Twi used to be so controlled.

It’s just hard to accept characters acting like this. Spike is so offhand about Twi’s hallucinations and such, even telling her to not worry and not bother Celestia even though she apparently gets hallucinations for hours and is driving herself insane, and he recognises that. It just seems kinda awkward and out of character for Spike who shows regularly that he really adores Twilight.

>”You promised her that you would help out today”
“You promised you’d help her out today.” – they’re lifelong friends, make it more casual.

>”I gotta reorganise the library like you asked me to”
She knows she asked him to do that, he doesn’t need to randomly tell her that, it feels pretty weird.

She’d hidden the truth from Spike? How? He seemed to see everything and know everything when they were talking a moment before.

>”That thing,” she said aloud. “I have to see it again.”
This is awkward. If you saw something weird in your newspaper would you say this out loud to yourself? You might say “Where are you…?” As you scan the paper or something like that, but you wouldn’t say that.

Twilight’s personality seems to bounce back and forth, from her being stunned one second that she can’t find the magic demon who lives in her newspaper and the next has her remarking it was probably a hallucination. She swaps randomly from being rationale to being outright insane. I realise madness is not a set personality but it seems goofy.

You claim Luna’s talking to the ‘northern warring nations’ but earlier you said the nations were to the west. Minor complaint.

>”You look absolutely flushed, as if you’ve seen a ghost.”
“You look like you’ve seen a ghost, darling, you’re positively flushed.” – as if you’ve seen a ghost just seems forced.

>”for reasons beyond even Twilight”
I assume you mean beyond Twilight’s grasp or something, just leaving it there makes it look weird.

I honestly would prefer Rarity to use a word like soirée instead of party, it just seems too crass for her.

>to stay awake, she all but ceased its usage
“to stay awake, she had all but ceased its usage.”

>”It was such a delightful time in Fillydelphia”
“I had such a delightful time in Fillydelphia”? Is that what you were aiming for? Also, I can’t imagine a strong independent mare like Rarity saying she almost cried when she had to leave, that’s very unladylike.

>”Ever since they had left the station…”
You have this paragraph highlighted yourself, so you know you need to work on this. The whole thing just seems awkwardly worded.

>”That’s not good at all, Twilight.”
This whole dialogue line is awkward, especially regarding needing rest.

The story on a whole wasn’t bad, the structure was fine enough and the pacing was pretty good, but the problem is with dialogue and character interactions. It feels forced a lot and the characters generally seem to act pretty strangely to each other especially when you connect it to the show. Spike seems uncaring about Twilight, Twilight’s good sense and intelligence seems gone when dealing with the problems. She’s not Applejack, she doesn’t hide her problems, she tells folks when she’s in trouble and worried like in Lesson Zero. You could argue that she’s losing her mind so not thinking straight, but she still thinks clearly enough to keep a neat, orderly journal about it.

This appears to be the opener for an epic adventure fic, but this chapter is a weak set up. The foreshadowing with the creature doesn’t give us much of an impression on him at all and we only really get to see that Twilight is tired and weak. Her friends seem pretty clueless about it which isn’t a good thing for them, she doesn’t seem interested in asking her brother about the dreams and Spike appears uncaring when he pretty much refuses to let her contact Celestia.

The hallucinations have no punch because we can’t see them and they aren’t explained to us so she could be having a hallucination of bunnies and kittens for all we know. The dream is pretty vague and Silent Hill like, could be anything so far. I realise you plan to expand upon it as she remembers more and whatever the creature is affects her more, but the first chapter needs to be really enticing for your readers so they’ll want to stick around for the following chapters. This is too empty to really make me want to find out more.

I don’t have a problem with you including Octavia like the other person did. She doesn’t NEED to feature at all because you mentioned her by name. You mentioned her as a kidnap victim, pointing out that it’s because she was well known that they drew attention to her. That’s fine. You don’t need to have her play anymore role except showing her as being kidnapped, that’s all. She doesn’t really have to do much else apart from being a named victim.

But yeah, I think a simple rework is all this needs. Just add more information of her hallucinations, the villain and the dream to give it more punch, and watch how formal you make your characters. Try to imagine the characters saying the lines, if you can’t, they probably wouldn’t.
>> No. 115647
>chided with a small
>Your prereader claimed this was an example of an inappropriate direct object.

"Chide" is a transitive verb. it requires a direct object. The speech doesn't count, since the object should be the person that gets chided, not the words that do so. "Chide" cannot take an indirect object, so there's nowhere left to attach the speech syntactically. That's why it's not a proper speaking verb.
>> No. 115650
>>115647
Greetings, good sir, I will kindly suggest you look up chide in a dictionary, it might make you see why this is not... quite correct.
>> No. 115653
>>115650

I'm gonna have to work 'chide' into one of my fics now, I'm digging this word.
>> No. 115656
File 134465752641.jpg - (44.35KB , 250x267 , trixcord_small.jpg )
115656
Title: Trixcord
Tags: Adventure
Description: In a desperate and costly bid to escape from his stone prison, Discord is left weak and helpless. Luckily for him, there is a nearby unicorn that he can hide in while he regains his power.
Links: Chapter 1: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Aqly26Lcyf0BSTmB-Ipko5kIzDkL4Yhk3RFt4BQr6cc/edit
Pre-Reader Response: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MFB05RPEsge5UaxiaJ9dpX6ja-4IkEYUa1UiY5dXX6k/edit
Past Training Grounds Review: http://www.ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/94251.html#94304

Comments: I'm still just looking for a review of the first chapter to make sure that all the things pointed out to me were fixed. If anyone is feeling adventurous, I would love if someone volunteered to review the rest.

Thank you!
>> No. 115659
>>115647
I noted that it was dependent on the transitivity of the verb, but then admitted to not being enough of a grammar nut to cite for certain what the answer was. I only called bull on your reference to an entirely absent direct object and used that as a basis for saying you were wrong. I closed by stating that I felt the sentence was okay as is, but the note before about transitivity should have left it clear that I could be wrong.

Anything else I said about anything you said that strikes you as off? I don't want to be running around spouting nonsense.

>>115650
If he's not quite correct, is the sentence fine as is? I'm asking because I really don't know for sure. It LOOKS right to me, but again, I'm not too deeply involved in the proper grammarings.

>>115653
Wait until this is resolved so you can be sure you use it correctly!
>> No. 115661
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115661
>>115646

Ho boy, I got a lot to say about this one. Let's hope 3 weeks of planning, writing and Battlefield: Bad Company 2 have let me keep some of that ol' writing stuffs.

>Mom and Dad don't need to be capitalized.

Um, if they're addressing someone, then they have to be capitalized. At least, that's what I was taught. If it's wrong, DAMN YOU, ENGLISH TEACHERS, but I'll wait and see what others have to say before I go about changing it.

>Faeces?

Two things:

1) That is the most awesome way to spell 'feces.'

2) A villain smelling like crap is just ... weird.

I'll figure out what Iliad, uh ... smells like.

>Check out this website

Done and done. Do note: I write what comes naturally to me, so if something seems like it needs a pause (to me), then I add one.

I'll fix whatever I feel needs it.

>Dialogue feels forced.

You said several times that I should envision the characters saying this stuff. And you're right. But that's the thing: I already do. It seems natural to me, and therefore I write it. Then again, I can see characters saying most everything, so watching the show a few more times wouldn't hurt.

>Iliad's description

Hm. All right, I'll give it to you: Iliad is what I would love to think as my magnum opus of villains. Yet my problem seems to be that I really don't know much about him. And I created him!

I'll take any criticisms on him. I want him to be a great villain, and that's going to take a lot of work on my part.

>Dialogue is formal

Damn myself. I tend to lean towards formal English when writing expository/narrative sections. Sometimes it translates to the dialogue. I'll get through it like I usually do: separate dialogue from narration/exposition and streamline it like a script.

>It's a horror

... it is? Really? I wasn't even aiming for horror, just ambiguity, especially considering that everything about Iliad could never possibly be revealed in this story. It's just the first episode, man. I need to stretch it out a bit.

>Spike being uncaring

I actually had an idea in the back of my mind where Spike and Twilight head to Zecora to try and find out what's wrong, as Spike doesn't think Twilight should bother Princess Celestia because she's preoccupied with overseas politics.

>Rarity scene

I've already been told to fix it, and I will.

>Self-highlighted paragraph

... I did? *checks the doc* Nope, that was Endless. I left it there anyway because I know it needs fixing, so I'll get to it.

>Epic adventure fic

"...spanned over multiple episodes." Yep, that's the fic. Iliad isn't going to be entirely revealed in this, the first episode (the chapter you read is the first part of episode I. Episodes are structured like very short and to the point books, but since they're not books, I call them episodes).

>Twilight tells her friends when she's worried

That may be true, unless something is preventing her from doing so. For instance, what if she thought they would think her crazy BECAUSE of Lesson Zero? As intelligent as Twilight is, being called crazy is the worst possible thing.

But, I might be wrong. Dunno. I'll take a look at it again.

>Hallucinations

Two things:

1) The only hallucination I didn't show was the one in the newspaper because the scene wasn't from her perspective

2) I never said that he didn't try to help her during the long hallucinations. The reason for them being there was to hint at what Iliad can do.



Welp, I'm off. Thanks for taking a look, and I'll be going through the revisions as I work on chapter 2.

Cheers!

-Figments
>> No. 115668
>>114124

I’m unsure how to begin this review. I’ve kept you waiting for a little more than a week, yet I have only read and will only review the first three chapters of your fic. “Why?” you’re probably asking. I couldn’t bring myself to read any further. I will, to the best of my ability, tell you my thoughts on your story. Most will be negative, some you might find harsh, but everything I say is for your betterment as a writer. I see something of myself in you; I too was once a novice. I still am, but that doesn’t keep away the delusions of grandeur Microsoft Word’s spelling and grammar checker has instilled in me. Brevity is the soul of wit. If this is the case, my review will not be very witty. I wasn’t one for humor anyway.

A Note on Author’s Notes
Let me disillusion you to the notion that prefacing fan-fiction is in any way a good idea. There is never a circumstance wherein it is appropriate to do so. It appears you have avoided the “disclaimer,” yet in its place you have stated, outright and in no uncertain terms, this is your first fan-fiction. You claim that it is “not really [your] first time writing fiction,” but this is a sordid comment I could cast into the trash as soon as I read it. I don’t care how new or how old you are to the art of fiction, but the quality of the piece speaks volumes more than you have. Which brings me to my point: Your work should show within the piece itself, not without it.

If, for some reason, you believe that it is absolutely necessary, put them in the comments section. This piece of functionality has, in my opinion, made authors’ notes within the work obsolete. Not only that, but it allows for interactions with readers. If you find yourself with many favorites of a story, blog posts are also very a convenient method to get meta-information about the story to the readers. When I want to read a story, I want to read the story, not an apology or explanation from the writer. Now that that tirade is out of my system, I’ll continue on to the review proper.

Plot
I would like to point out two absurdities within the first three chapters that stuck out to me vividly. They are not the sole offenders, but they caused me the greatest backlash and kicked me out of the story (more so than even the myriad mechanical mistakes). The first is Princess Luna’s reaction to being back in Equestria and her sister’s presence. Her amicability is outright disturbing considering you tell in the narrative that Celestia attempted magical torture via disrupting the natural movement of the heavenly bodies and, essentially, mind-raped (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/MindRape) Luna in order to turn her into Nightmare Moon to give herself reason to banish her. Considering Luna was supposedly already mentally unstable before the psychological torture… What the hay, Hero? I can understand the appeal of Tyrantlestia, but that might be taking it a bit too far.

The second was Twilight’s conclusion regarding the guard inquiring about Snips and Snails’s disappearance. She immediately concludes that their disappearance is a conspiracy because “his response to her not knowing their location seemed almost... mechanical, as if he had the response ready,” when it’s far more likely he’s been doing this for most of the early morning and even last evening. Why wouldn’t he have such a response ready and habitualized if he’s been door-to-door getting the same answers? Answer: He would. This incident seems to be a driving force for her to call her friends to a meeting and from there, I’ll assume, the rest of the story takes off. Such fallacious logic driving a story is a very, very bad sign.

You have a workable premise, but that premise is overshadowed by incompetence in almost every area, mechanical, stylistic, systematic, or otherwise. The pacing was too fast. Your constant telling (i.e. stating outright something which should be inferred from action and dialogue) caused it to read far too fast. There was neither time to get immersed in the story nor any dynamic action to pique interest. As you have admitted in your A/N, this story doesn’t start where it should. A first chapter, a first paragraph or sentence, even, should make me want to continue reading. Your story needs to start on an engaging note, which brings us to our next topic.

Hook
A good hook is readers gained. I have no desire to keep reading a story that doesn’t give a reason to from the outset. Good books have good hooks. Bad hooks spell bad books. Are you getting it yet? Your story has a bad hook. It isn’t dynamic. It isn’t well paced. It presents no basis for the story to be a worthwhile read. The first words are just as important as the last. Make them just as memorable.

Characterization
I don’t think any of the characters really felt “right.” As this is an alternate universe fic, I’ll accept them being out of character, but what I won’t accept is them not being believable characters. Celestia has implemented some kind of theocratic dictatorship. She’s done awful things to her sister and lied to her people, yet she seems to have nary a remorseful bone in her body or a qualm in her head. Her only concern is how Luna will react to the changes in the governing of their subjects. Luna, as stated above, is quite chipper for one who’s been mentally unstable, subjected to who-knows-what by Celestia in order to transform her into a villainous effigy of herself, and trapped, wrongfully, in the moon for one-thousand years.

The mane six are flat and uninteresting. I would go into details, but there’s not much for me to point out in regards to exactly what made them flat, aside from Pinkie and her constant giggling, which stuck out to me.

From what I saw, you named one OC. You named him Dom. You named him Dom. “Dom” does not fit into normal pony naming conventions. Unless you’re making a convoluted reference to Benedictine and Carthusian monasticism and/or Anglo-Saxon law in which case, stop being smarter than me, I’d advise changing his name to fit within the (([Verb]|[Noun])|([Noun]|[Verb])) constraint.

The physical descriptions of your characters are plain and unmemorable to the point I completely glossed over them. Original characters who are not main characters can have one defining characteristic and the description be sufficient enough to invoke an image of that character if that character’s personality is well-developed. There is more leeway and ambiguity regarding characters from the show. Generally, one need only mention a named character’s physical appearance when it’s relevant to the plot and necessary to set the mood or tone. The error to avoid is commonly referred to as “Lavender Unicorn Syndrome.” LUS is a term coined to indicate when narration uses a description of the character instead of their name or a pronoun. So “Twilight walked down the street,” becomes “The lavender unicorn walked down the street.” Your story has major issues with LUS where a pronoun or the character’s name would suit the situation just fine. In dialogue tags, if it is clear who is speaking, the tag can oft be omitted entirely.

Point of View
Third person will be the best choice for most stories. So, you made a good choice there. However, it appears your narrator is fully omniscient. He can see everything that’s going on and hear everything that’s going on—even the characters’ thoughts, all characters’ thoughts, all the time. This is actually more difficult to pull off than first person narration. The inevitable or, I should say, inherent head hopping involved is jarring. It will break immersion more often than not. The PoV best suited for the story you’re trying to write is limited third person, where the narrator tells the story from the perspective of a point of view character whose opinions and thoughts color the narration, or a complicated PoV I’ve heard referred to as “limited omniscient,” where the narrator doesn’t know anyone’s thoughts or opinions and can only relate what’s happening.

Style
The piece contains so many mechanical errors that the reflexive, stilted, humorless chuckle that rises up from somewhere within me when I see such mistakes has caught in my throat. There are so many, in fact, that I couldn’t imagine marking them all. I suggest you sit down, open up that smooth melon you call a brain, and read these:
http://derpy.me/EznGuide
http://derpy.me/EditorsOmnibus
http://www.equestriadaily.com/2011/02/pony-writing-guide.html

While the above guides can give a far better lesson than I ever could, I’ll try to express the flaw I saw stand out starkest. You exposit (tell) in such a manner it feels like grating one’s fingers between bricks. Shapely prose does not expose to its readers every bell and whistle driving the machine of a story. You must choose, with the discretion of a jeweler examining rough diamonds, which details to place in your story. Next, you must place them in a manner as not to obscure the action of the story itself. The now is the most important element. Backstory has its place, but what the reader should have at the forefront of his mind at all times is the action happening “now.”

Dialogue
Here I am conflicted. There are parts that stick in my ear like globs of hot wax, and there are others that have a resonation about them covered by a haze of grammar and typographical errors. Your dialogue will definitely need reworking, though, as the characterizations still need work. You will also need to fix your dialogue tags, stylistically and mechanically.

Aesthetic
It needs lots and lots of work to be of any quality. There is some hope for the idea, but it is lost in translation, so to speak. If you work hard and rewrite, rewrite, rewrite, there might be some possibility of saving this from the scrap heap. Do try to do better.

And that’s all I have to say about that.
>> No. 115670
>>115650
I did so days ago. No need to speak anonymously. It's a legitimate discussion. I'm actually trying to help.

>>115628
It's not a preferred speaking verb because it can't take the speech as a direct object. You don't chide the words; you chide a person. That said, many writers stretch what constitutes a proper speaking verb, even to the point that the practice is becoming acceptable usage for some of these verbs, including "chide" and even some intransitive verbs. (For other instances of common usage becoming acceptable, see also "ain't" and the use of "they" in the singular). It's a minor point. Rest assured—if that's the only problem with the story, it will not be an issue.
>> No. 115671
>>115659
The sentence is as fine as it is, and there needs not be a direct object shenanigans involved in that specific problem. That said, there is a very basic dialogue punctuation error which screams for attention. Dialogue do not work like that, as it was pointed out.

>>115670
Actually, good sir, I happen to be Anonymous. Posting pictures is not currently within my power, and I apologize if that causes you confusion as to whom I am. But, back to business.

This might enlighten my point:
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=chide

Historical use of the word support more the intransitive use of the word (rather than the current push for a transitive only).

As such, the usage of it follows the same pattern as scold, ran, sleep, and many other words which become transitive or intransitive depending upon usage and the whims of the person reading. Thus, there is nothing wrong with saying "You are the worse student I have ever had, and I wish I had never bothered with you," he chided as the roots of the word, and the flexibility given to it by the way the English language works, means there is nothing grammatical, syntactical, or semantical which would prevent it.

English has a tendency to do those silly things like that, and it is good to keep them in mind studying how to construct languages in less than traditional ways, but in this case there is nothing unorthodox about it.
>> No. 115672
>>115671
Validation! I have a general sense of how many words are meant to work because I have seen them used enough times to absorb such knowledge! This is good!

I missed a dialogue punctuation error. This is bad! My eyes are not those of an eagle, and now me am cry. Fortunately, it was already pointed out by a preread and so it shouldn't go unaddressed.
>> No. 115674
>>115661

Not sure if you realise faeces is a proper, common way of spelling it, at least in the UK.

The sarcasm about what he smells like is certainly appreciated though.

You brought up his smell twice, pretty much the same as his overall description, so obviously it is important. That's why it's not good to make it vague then, especially when it's strong enough to make Twilight nearly vomit.

And in reference to it being the first chapter, it is, but try to remember, it's likely the first chapter anyone will ever read of your writing and definitely the first chapter where they ever see Iliad. This is possibly your first and only chance to sell yourself, to convince someone to watch you or to read on.

You dream sequence is kinda empty, Iliad isn't defined at all or has really DONE anything to be considered scary(villians generally are meant to be scary to be intimidating) and the only character interaction we really get is the Spike and Twi bit that seems heartless for Spike.

You might say you had an idea for Spike and Twi going to Zecora's, but that wasn't mentioned in the fic and because of that, it doesn't exist in the first chapter.

Things need to be stretched out throughout the story, yes, that's obvious, but the first chapter is the most important because it's what's going to make folks read on. A good first chapter can make people forget a poor second and third, but a poor first means you won't GET a second or third.

And I mentioned hallucinations, because you did. There was only one shown in the chapter (one we see nothing about), but there are more referenced, some of which last hours, but that's it. We know she hallucinates (a massive thing for a character to do, something people should be more worried about than they are), but we don't know about what she sees or hears, etc .

Like I said, for all we know she could be having hallucinations right out of 'Meet the Pyro'.
>> No. 115681
[Dark]

When Kite, a young pegasus from Cloudsdale, finally earns his cutie mark, he finds that it isn't quite what he had in mind. Claiming he's been given the wrong one, a pair of ponies show up and offer to take him to a place where he can have the mark changed.

Chapter 1: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xLSRxITLwRnOBz3KyoKu0ERxNXDXH8aP2B_o-cN4lN4/edit

Chapter 2: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1GqtfVxhnGa6CUkuSwV5n0W6ZHeGqNCScB58vCSwjmEI/edit

Take note that I've also submitted this for review in Umbra's thread but, judging by the length of his queue, I figure I can easily slot in another review and edit. Chances are, you won't be reviewing the same versions.

Additionally, during Umbra's previous pass at this, he mentioned the desire for additional character development and fleshing out of scenes, less rushing.
>> No. 115697
>>115668

The author has acknowledged this review off-site.
>> No. 115698
File 134470105963.png - (582.50KB , 619x1292 , hooves_suck_by_veggie55-d4sf1i9.png )
115698
>>115674

>Smell was strong enough

I never really said that it was Iliad she was smelling. On the contrary, I wanted to make it seem like the room smelled awful.

>Iliad being scary


Iliad is designed to be, how did Ryonne put it, loving and hurtful at the same time. He genuinely wants to reach out to Twilight, but at the same time he wants to get her away from him.

>Zecora not mentioned

I never said I would include it, just that at one time I did have an idea of doing that.

>First chapters

... don't patronize me. I've been writing for a long time. I know what I have to do to get people interested. Sorry if I come off as blunt or out of place, but it seems like you're calling me an idiot, and that's something I don't take too kindly to.

Now, this brings me to my last question, as it was stated when I posted. Would this be better if I started it from the beginning of the dreams?

You revisited the hallucinations, but only further complained about them. All right, I get it. They need to be better set up. Would setting it back a few days accomplish that?

Would highlighting the past allow the reader to make sense of the future?

Cheers!

-Figments
>> No. 115701
>>115671
I'm not saying the usage is incorrect. I'm saying it's not preferred by me or a number of reviewers that I respect. Does that mean you have to listen to us? Absolutely not. It falls into a grey area where things are not technically wrong, but may still hurt readability.

If "chide" is intransitive and you diagram the sentence, where does the speech go? Likewise, if you begin a sentence with a conjunction, where does the other end of the dotted line go? If you dangle a preposition, what goes on the little horizontal line? None of these examples are technically incorrect, however. Is it okay to begin every sentence of a story with "the?" It's not wrong, but highly inadvisable. You can break any guidelines or rules you like, but do so in moderation, and make sure your writing is good enough that the reader will assume it's a conscious choice. I break many guidelines and rules myself, including this one.

This won't be the thing that determines whether or not this story gets posted to EqD. It's just a suggestion. I am trying to help. You don't see too many PR's coming in here to give advice.
>> No. 115702
File 134470544057.png - (27.16KB , 140x124 , Power.png )
115702
>>114441

We wants it. Gives it to us!

Might get this done later today. If not, it could arrive as late as some time next week (Wednesday-ish).
>> No. 115724
Title: Zecora’s Guest

Author: Sayhono

Tags: {Normal, Random, Adventure?}

Synopsis: Zecora has an unexpected visitor. Aided by her own experience as a former outsider and outcast, can she teach him/it the value of friendship?

Links: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bkjGA_oB4IDgkQ56fm41ifVQ-K6Bes5HlbhnenKn6Gk/edit

Comments: I wrote this with two goals in mind: Make something that people would want to read more of, try to have as few mechanical errors as possible, and try to have some semblance of coherency.

It's short, yes, but in my experience as a reader, if something draws me in after the first few scenes, I will usually read it to the finish.
>> No. 115734
File 134474275632.jpg - (185.30KB , 894x894 , 132641534555.jpg )
115734
>>115464
updating with chapter two, but I don't know how to add that into my original review request. Not sure if I need to start another one, or if chapter two can just be tagged onto my original one.

Chapter Two: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1e3DAaHSgbV0TJKTac5OCY_sGu1DvxWVLaRV6ENbdPZY/edit

Also, if I can get myself back on quota tonight, I may grab another review-in-waiting in a thinly veiled attempt to clear the queue out to keep helping the thread. Am I allowed to do that?
>> No. 115738
File 134473968383.png - (223.29KB , 520x496 , sfdaghbF-the-great-and-powerful-trixie-25163643-520-496.png )
115738
Title: Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Hooves

Author: alexmagnet

Tags: Comedy, Sci-Fi? (does time-travel constitute Sci-Fi), Random? (possibly random, I'm not sure)

Synopsis:

Illegal cage matches, ass-kicking, and time-travel abound when Trixie returns to Ponyville to challenge Twilight to a bare-knuckle boxing match. Why has Trixie come back? What does she want? Whose ass will be kicked? And what's up with the time-travel bit? The answers to these, and less interesting questions, can be found in, Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Hooves.

Links: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ZX7Pa2tqgfLAHKLGkrmaJpW-gAQZyDfmj1dhPcmS2yo/edit


So here we go, attempt two. This fic was going to, and still might, be my entry for the August Fic Contest: Power Overwhelming. Though entering the contest has become a tertiary concern. Right now, I just want to write something doesn't suck and doesn't leave my reviewer bored as hell. I decided to write only the first chapter for now and then get it reviewed to see if I'm going in the right direction or not before I write anymore. I plan on this being pretty short. Probably 3 chapters about 2.5-3k words each.

I'd like to request that Anonymous (you know who you are) review this since he/she reviewd my last story and he/she would be able to best tell how much I've improved, if any. However, if Anonymous is busy, or simply doesn't want to review it, then I'll take a review from anyone willing to give me their time. Basically, I want to know if this is actually funny and whether or not it still sucks compared to my previous writing. If it does suck, then how can I improve it? If it doesn't, then great. How can I improve it? Thanks in advance to whoever reviews this.

(P.S. I've proofread this multiple times so the amount of errors should be extremely low. However, if that is not the case, then I apologize for not only having poor grammar, but also lying.)
>> No. 115739
>>115734
I'll add it to your original request so you don't lose your place in line.
>> No. 115740
>>115739
>>115734
Mind giving an updated word count?
>> No. 115741
File 134474190527.jpg - (59.37KB , 640x615 , Happy Lyra.jpg )
115741
I have a few other reviews to get through so I won't be able to get to your story for a few days. If it's still there when I finish up my other reviews, I'll claim it. Just don't want to keep you waiting too long since it might be a contest entry. :D
>> No. 115742
File 134474222102.jpg - (7.83KB , 193x261 , verywell.jpg )
115742
>>115734
Sure thing. But by review-in-waiting, do you mean an unclaimed item, or something already claimed but not yet reviewed? The first is more preferred, but either way, it's okay; coming here usually implies that the authors appreciate feedback, and the more the merrier.
>> No. 115743
File 134474328853.png - (518.60KB , 912x881 , mlfw2041-132545929240.png )
115743
>>115741
Sweet, thanks. I appreciate that.
>> No. 115748
File 134474660084.jpg - (171.08KB , 900x753 , 132641636222.jpg )
115748
>>115740
chapter two came out to 7,431 words

>>115742
and yeah, I mean unclaimed fics
>> No. 115749
File 134474661525.jpg - (63.51KB , 502x640 , Blazblue-Chrono-Phantasma-Noel-Vermillion-Artwork.jpg )
115749
>>115724
Eh, what the hay. Why not? I'll take another crack at this reviewing thing. Plus this is super short, so bonus points.



(pic is related because Noel is awesome)
>> No. 115768
File 134476588869.jpg - (11.72KB , 200x260 , 200px-Sherlock_Holmes_Portrait_Paget.jpg )
115768
This is *not* a claim. Not yet.

I am asking Conch, if it be his pleasure, if I might review his fine piece, 'The RED Cataclysm', in what I a cringe to refer to as a while.

I am loathe to claim outright, as this coming week reeks of foreboding, and I fear If I were to try write a review, it may not get to Conch for at least a fortnight, perhaps even more.

So, dearest Conch, if such a wait seems far too melancholy, I shall drop this immediately in the hopes that some other fine reviewer will pick up my regrettable slack. If, however, you are content to twiddle your thumbs in waiting for 14 days or more, then by all means make it known, and I shall begin as soon as possible.
>> No. 115811
Submitting my long-term project again. Requesting review of the Prologue, Chapter 1, and Chapter 2.


Title: Into the Night
Author: TheDamnedScribe
Tags: [Adventure] [Dark] [War]

Synopsis:
Many stories of Equestria focus on the happy aspects of life in the nation. They cover the everyday lives of the ponies under the care of the Royal Sisters, the trials and tribulations ponies occasionally go through, and the happy times that make up much of life. Far fewer focus on the unhappier side of life within Equestria, but these are also commonplace. The rarest of stories are those that cover the darkest of areas. Stories of war, and death.

But these are two things that the Royal Guard must face, for it is their everyday life to train and ready themselves to combat the threats Equestria faces. For these things do exist, despite the efforts of the Princesses, and sometimes, just sometimes, the Royal Guard must march to war.

So this is their story, for they were soldiers once…

…but heroes now.


Links:

Prologue - https://docs.google.com/document/d/1cucVgbUiTw9SKQJjT2bn-MBliOU7M4ZQMl1NNzLQO68/edit
Chapter 1 - https://docs.google.com/document/d/1t5c1oaCXQ_oDE_te-LBkfx_4rDpb8A5T3PyTGG5IYkY/edit
Chapter 2 - https://docs.google.com/document/d/1GcGf4FemIs59kElnwpPGf7EcDwmt6oY8JWInxJJQnR4/edit

Thanks in advance,
Scribe.
>> No. 115849
queue seems a little slow so Im gonna get hugbox's help instead
>> No. 115860
>>115768
Seems fair to me. Sure, I'm willing to wait that long.
>> No. 115878
8/6
>>115171
The Twilight Hours

I would like to review this story, if that's okay.
>> No. 115892
File 134483057198.jpg - (24.79KB , 303x456 , Bane-jpg_181056.jpg )
115892
Title: Twilight Writes a "Dear Seabiscuit" Letter

Author: InsufferableUnicorn (my FiMFiction handle)

Tags: Sad, Shipping

Synopsis: Twilight Sparkle is breaking up with Fluttershy, if she can only find the words.

Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/44513/Twilight-Writes-a-%26quot%3BDear-Seabiscuit%26quot%3B-Letter
>> No. 115894
File 134483546283.jpg - (36.99KB , 280x280 , mlfw154_1304845597044.jpg )
115894
Alrighty then, this review might end up being longer than the story it’s a review of. We’ll see how things go.

First off, I’m going to start with your synopsis.

>Zecora has an unexpected visitor. Aided by her own experience as a former outsider and outcast, can she teach him/it the value of friendship?

Zecora is either an outsider or an outcast; I don’t really think she can be both. Outsider implies that she is not from Ponyville, which she isn’t. Whereas outcast implies that she is from Ponyville but she was cast out. I suppose she could be both, but it seems better to just say that she was an outsider than an outcast. Unless you are planning on saying that she was outcast from her original home in which case that makes perfect sense. Secondly, you say ‘him/it’, which is fine I suppose assuming the main character is genderless but looks like a male. I doubt that’s the case though, so I think you should just stick with ‘he’.

Okay, moving on to the actual story. Let’s start with your mission statement from your original post.

>I wrote this with two goals in mind: Make something that people would want to read more of, try to have as few mechanical errors as possible, and try to have some semblance of coherency.

Technically that’s three goals, but whatever. I’m going to address each of these individually.

>Make something that people would want to read more of

To be honest, I didn’t want to read past the first page. But, it was only another half-page so I finished it. It’s not that I think this is a bad idea or anything, I actually think this could make for a good story (I’m sure it’s been done before, I just haven’t read a story like it) and I’m interested to see where you go with it. However, your second goal

>try to have as few mechanical errors as possible

wasn’t exactly successfully met.

>Stones dug into his sides, and the damp earth
chilled him, but he lay there patiently, watching as the night gave way to morning.

Besides the fact that this just sounds weird to me, it also is a run-on sentence.

>At the mouth of a cave, deep within the Everfree forest, lay a small sleepy pony

‘lay’ should be ‘laid’ here. Also, you refer to him as a pony here, but then like two sentences later you imply that he’s not a pony.

>He knew that ponies lay dormant during the night and became active during the day, so that is what he did.

Make up your mind. Please tell me this isn’t going to be a changeling story. I get the feeling that this is where this is going. I feel that a story about a changeling learning about friendship is a less interesting one than one about an orphan, or whatever, getting Zecora as a surrogate mother. Also, that last bit of that sentence, really unnecessary. I realize that is what he did. You just showed me that in the preceding sentence. You don’t need to tell me that what I just read is what happened.

>the pony gathered himself up.

Just say ‘he’. This seems like Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, except you’re not describing him. You’re just referring to him as ‘the pony’.

>His legs were weak, and trembled with the effort as he took a few steps into the forest.

I’m not sure how to make this sentence sound better. Maybe ‘His legs were weak and they trembled as he took a few steps into the forest.’ Adding effort is kind of telly.

I feel like I’m going to end up editing every single line. So, I’m just going to stop here unless I see something that I really feel I should point out.

>Zecora had no ambient magic like as earth ponies do, nor did she have the overt magic of a unicorn. What she did have was wisdom, knowledge, and patience.

I’m not sure why you kept this in, but just crossed it out. I think you should just take it out since it is really telly and it’s got a few errors as well.

>The zebra’s gardens had a secluded peace, hidden away as they were with in the forest. The beds were fragmented into clusters. The neighbors of each garden cul de sac were carefully chosen to aid each other. The bug repelling nature of one protected the succulent leaves of the other, which in turn lent the use of its supportive root system. Harmony without magic.

This whole paragraph is one big tell-a-thon. It also serves no purpose. Also, the last sentence doesn’t really make sense (and it’s a fragment). Are you saying that harmony requires magic normally? I would just remove this entire paragraph.

>a knot of vines had tangled around his legs,

Since when?

>As they both stood Zecora could see how thin the colt was, and how his legs trembled just in keeping him upright. She sighed, and realized she would do better with something to eat as well.

So, let me get this straight. She sees a starving child and she’s like “Man I could really go for some food right now.” I know what you’re going for here but it comes off really weird sounding.

>Beckoned with a hoof, Zecora started toward her cottage.

He beckoned Zecora? That’s what it sounds like is happening.

>The amused Zebra sidled up behind the confused colt and nudged him homeward.

Suddenly zebra is a pronoun. Oh, she nudged him homeward? Are you saying that Zecora’s home is now his home as well? I assumed that’s where the story was going to end up. But, maybe you should save that little scene for the end once he actually accepts Zecora’s home as his own.

>The trappings of ponyhood slung around itself as a cloak clutched tight by a weary traveler.

You are really trying hard to be deep here. But it doesn’t make sense. I think what you mean is that this, apparently non-pony, is holding on to being a pony for protection. But, you say ‘trappings’ making it sound like it’s a nuisance. This also lends credence to my changeling theory, which I still hope is wrong.

Okay, let’s move on to your last goal.


> try to have some semblance of coherency

I suppose it was technically coherent most of the time. It was a little odd how you switched from the yet unnamed character’s perspective to Zecora’s perspective without really having them connect coherently. Also, a lot of your sentences sound really weird or just don’t make sense. I would still say this story is fairly coherent though. I’ll give it that.

Grammar:
I noticed quite a few problems, not the least of which is run on sentences. You do a lot of ‘, but’ or ‘, and’ where you should just start a new sentence. Also, there’s some comma splicing as well. If you want me to go through and comment on all of the mistakes I noticed and basically go through and edit your story in google docs. Then I’m happy to do that.

Story:
I’m really worried about this going where I think it’s going. You’re trying to keep what he is a secret, but you’re doing it in a really ham-fisted way. You just call him a pony all the time, and even describe as looking like a pony, but then say things that imply he’s not a pony. It would be better to show things that he does that imply he’s not a pony. You’re basically just telling the reader “Hey guys, by the way, the main character isn’t really a pony but I won’t tell you what he actually is.” This is part of a deeper problem I have with your story, one that I have/had as well. You do a lot of telling vs. showing. Rather than let the readers figure things out for themselves, you tell them everything.
That’s about all I got for story right now.

Characterization:
Almost none to speak of so far. This thing’s like one and a half pages. I assume that ‘he’ will be shy and not trusting at first and then he’ll grow to trust and love Zecora and, hopefully, there’ll be some conflict at some point. Something that makes him question his trust. I guess that’s really more suited to the story section of this review, isn’t it? Oh well.

Conclusion:
Having just received a review that was brutally honest and appreciating it very much I decided I would do the same for you. In one and half pages you’ve already lost my interest. The bad grammar turned me off pretty quickly, though that helps me understand why my story didn’t entice people to keep reading. I get it now! I haven’t found myself caring at all about this mysterious character. I don’t really care who or what he is. Basically I was just bored, and frustrated from the poor grammar, when reading this. I think you’ll need to make a lot of revisions if you want to keep people interested. Also, you should probably find someone to edit your work and you should proofread some yourself as well.

As for the things I liked, since I feel it is important to tell people what you did like and not just what you didn’t. Well, there’s not many of them. I liked the fact that you remembered to make Zecora’s dialogue rhyme. So there’s that. That’s all I got though, sorry.

So anyways, I don't want you to think that you should stop writing or anything. This just needs some improvements. A lot of improvements. You're basically in the same boat as me right now. We can be sailing buddies.I've always wanted to sail around the world...
>> No. 115895
File 134483647529.png - (60.85KB , 256x256 , Fluttershy131256019416.png )
115895
Yeah, I'm gonna have to relinquish my claim of Leaky Roof. There's no way I'm gonna be able to get to that and the other two fics I'm already half finished reviewing. Nopony's Innocent is really long.

I'm sorry for taking up your time.
>> No. 115899
>>115894
Thank you for your time and honesty.

While the offer of highlighting the grammar issues is appreciated, I would like to do it myself.

'The pony' isn't a changeling. Just so you know. :P
>> No. 115901
>>115894
Nope.
She could be an outcast from her village and an outsider in Ponyville.
Just felt like saying that.
>> No. 115917
>>115915
>>115916
What is a spambot?
>> No. 115921
File 134485026357.png - (46.15KB , 289x317 , spillo.png )
115921
>>115860
Well, given your blessing...

Claiming Conch's 'The RED cataclysm'
>> No. 115923
File 134485552098.jpg - (5.14KB , 100x203 , potatopatchy.jpg )
115923
So I haven't had time to look at it, and probably won't until the end of the week. So here's a heads-up and an apology in advance. I did say that I wouldn't know when I can get to it, but I didn't expect my week to be this clogged. Still, I should be able to get back to you latest next Monday.
>> No. 115933
File 134486504129.png - (28.40KB , 945x945 , 2013044020.png )
115933
>>115899
>While the offer of highlighting the grammar issues is >appreciated, I would like to do it myself.

Fair enough.

>'The pony' isn't a changeling. Just so you know. :P

Thank you, that actually makes more me far more interested in your story than I initially was.

>She could be an outcast from her village and an >outsider in Ponyville.

I realized this not long after posting that review. So, yes, you are correct.
>> No. 115973
>>115681
Claim

>>115811
I'll try to take less than a month this time.
>> No. 115979
Title: Sweet Escape
Author: Bob From Bottles
Tags: Comedy, Slice-of-life
Synopsis: Luna is on a mission to save Equestria. With so many ponies gaining weight, she feels it is time to put down the cake and pick up a salad. Her plan is simple: she and her sister will become fitness champions so that they can show everypony the benefits of a healthier lifestyle. Now, Luna only needs to find a way to let her sister know that the dieting and exercise begins today.

Current Story Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ySL9fdUsFL_T4JI4YEmtpd1wWLuaQma4wFhnRtj0szc/edit
Pre-Reader comments: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1HdmakjwLFuB7reu8iGSU3fv6xLDWTqGZpW5rXSFKS9k/edit
Original story link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/33043/21/Cutting-Ties/Sweet-Escape

Comments: So, I got my response back from EQD, and while I wasn't rejected, I wasn't really accepted either. Instead, my story exists in the limbo of 'could be improved.' The main issue is that the pre-reader feels my story is worse off now than it was in its original form. I already took care of the minor issues, but I'm at a loss to how to fix my story short of scrapping it and starting over.
If possible, I would like a reviewer who has read the original story so they could tell me what has improved/gotten worse in my latest version.
There's no need to look deep into the grammar or mechanics as there will likely be significant rewrites.
>> No. 115981
File 134489924469.png - (96.09KB , 289x406 , Oh yeah, I'm awesome.png )
115981
Hi everypony. I'm back. took a week long break to figure some stuff out, but I'll be back to reducing that queue now. wow it grew a little since I left. I thought I left it at 7 stories.
>>112662
Ye're at the top o' the queue, time for ye te get reviewed laddae.
>> No. 115989
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115989
Hey there /fic/. One of my random scribblings from writer's block actually turned into something. Fimfiction seems to think so anyway. I was going to try to throw it at EQD, but my better judgment has told me to put it here. Have at it.

Title: 2-D Pony
Author: Bleeding Raindrops
Email: email field
Tags: [Grimdark][Sad(?)]
Synopsis: Two-dimensional. You’d think being flat would be fun right? Wrong. It’s the worst existence imaginable, if you can even call it existing. I think I’m going insane.
Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1-fJ2rXnSi0O55Xf_9L4gae3O05hhgg2CDpdLMPiFxLo/edit
Word count: 1089

If you could give me some advice on whether or not I should have the [Sad] tag, that would be helpful
>> No. 115990
Hello there and welcome to the Training Grounds! I'm your reviewer Dublio here and I'm going to do my best to help you. I sincerely apologize for the long delay in your review and thank you for being patient. Some life things happened and all that. You understand, yes?

This review is not over (obviously) cause it only covers the first chapter (plus introduction, but that doesn't really count). I'll post the rest later as I go along, cause I don't want to bog you down with TOO much information. A small warning beforehand. These are simply suggestions and I'm only human, so listen with a grain of salt, analyze, and decide for yourself what you want to do. I'll do my best to point out mistakes, but keep in mind that a lot of the English language is subjective.

Notes on the Synopsis:

First off, your synopsis has a few errors in it. Let's go find them.

>The thing about loyalty… the thing about loyalty is sometimes you don’t know where your loyalties lie.

Add a "that" before "sometimes."

>Have I always been loyal to my friends... no.

Replace that ellipsis with a question mark, then make the next word its own sentence. Like this:

Have I always been loyal to my friends? No.

>There are things that they didn't know about me.

There are things they don't know about me.

>All these things of my past have been kept from everypony.

Awkward-sounding. How about:

"Lots of secrets from the past that I've kept from everypony."

Also, there's an extra period on that line. Delete that. Please don't clog your synopsis with ellipses either. That gets annoying after a while. Too many pauses make the narrative all stutter-y.

>I had a past full of disgrace and shame, and loneliness.

Normally when using a list, one says it like this: "disgrace, shame, and loneliness."

>Only a few ponies knew these secrets about me.

Hmm, sounds a bit froo-froo. How about: "Only a few ponies know the truth." You already stated that she had secrets, so perhaps mentioning it a different way like I did above would be better? Just a suggestion.

>But one day…everything that had happened came back to bite me in the ass…

Many people are split down the middle when it comes to using curse words in ponyfic, so be aware of that. As for me, I think the two ellipses in this line is unnecessary and the word "ass" is a bit suspension breaking. Perhaps it's just me, but I don't really like it. Sorry. =(

I looked at your introduction and I realize it's just an extended, long-winded version of the synopsis. I don't believe it's needed at all. Considering how chapter one begins with her parents, I really don't think the introduction has any place here. I think that your introduction works better as a synopsis. Since you have already turned it into one, I think it would be redundant to keep your introduction in there. After all, it doesn't tell the reader something that they don't already know or can't get from the synopsis anyway.

As for the first chapter so far, here are my thoughts. When I read this story's first chapter and saw the bright blue pegasus and the female with magenta eyes, I immediately thought that these were Rainbow Dash's parents. After reading a bit, I realize that it was. Basically, they have a foal who is very sick and through a miracle, somehow absorbs the rainbow colors from her mom's mane. Because of that, she is no longer sick. So far, consider me intrigued as to what will happen next. I question the point of repeating yourself so much that it kinda bogs down the narrative a bit, but I can at least see what you were trying to go for.

Pre-Reader Issues:

Let's address the pre-reader issues and see if they're still there. I didn't see any author's notes, memes, or excessive punctuation in the first chapter, so you're alright there. The pre-reader was correct when he said you had word repetition though. Sometimes you repeat the exact same word in the sentence, but I'm not sure if you're intentionally doing that for effect or if it's just an accident. Judging purely by the way it reads however kinda makes the repetition a tad annoying to read through.

The next item is the mention about his name, "Valientwing." The reason the pre-reader found your naming of "Valientwing" hokey was because of the naming scheme that normally befits the ponies. It's just a mouthful to say the entire name at once. Just imagine if Rainbow Dash's name was read like "Rainbowdash." But that's up to you if you want to keep it the same. Just wanted to point it out.

I did notice some telling issues and I will do my best to point them out. There are still homonym errors hidden in there, but I didn't notice any parenthesis, so yay! There's not really much dialogue in this chapter, so it's harder to tell if you have dialogue attribution problems at this point, but I'll make a note to look for them in chapter two. As for the rest, you either removed the errors or they're in a later chapter so for now, let's set it aside. Alright, now here is a line by line review for Chapter One. I didn't bother to line by line the introduction because I believe you should cut it completely. If you want more information about the errors in the introduction though, let me know and I'll point out why stuff doesn't work.

Chapter One Line-by-Line Review:

>It was a rainy day, the kind of day where ponies stay inside in their warm homes and drink cider by the fire.

Delete the word "in." Saying "inside in" sounds repetitive.

>There was nothing out of the ordinary for the scheduled Storm of the Century. But one thing in particular did seem out of place.

This contradicts itself almost immediately afterwards. Was that intentional?

>She was simple, an ordinary pegasus pony with ordinary features. There was only one thing about her that stood out…

Contradicting yourself again.

>He was soaking to the bone in the pouring summer rain.

He was soaked

>Down the street, no more than a few blocks, was his intended destination.

Add the word "away" after "blocks".

>The cargo he was pulling was no ordinary cargo.

Replace "was pulling" with "pulled" in order to make it sound more like an active voice. I also question your repetition of the word cargo. You might have repeated the exact same word for emphasis, but I think it kinda sounds awkward there. I think it would be okay to just say that it wasn't ordinary, since the readers will think you're still talking about it.

After looking through your first chapter, I realize that sometimes it can get confusing as to what's happening or that it seems too repetitive at times, so here's a link to a valuable resource.

http://www.dailywritingtips.com/7-solutions-for-repetitive-sentence-structure/

>Resting in the dark, safe carriage cabin was a beautiful teal green mare.

Usually teal is a subset of green, so you can just delete the word "green" as it means the same thing anyway.

>To the stallion pulling the carriage, She was the most beautiful creature in all of Equestria.

Random capitalization. Change to "she."

>She was also crying out in pain... she was in labor.

Why thank you for telling the reader that outright instead of showing them. Perhaps giving us a clue by mentioning her short, raspy breaths and huge stomach would have gave it away. This is an example of telling instead of showing.

>Her cutie mark was a rainbow. Some might say that, looking at it with a passing glance, she was good for nothing. With a rainbow on her flank, she had to be destined for weather control.

So in your world, weather control isn't considered important? I'm not sure how else to interpret that sentence that she was good for nothing.

>In truth, she had one real special talent, and it had nothing to do with working in a factory.

That comma before "and" doesn't belong. Kill it.

>He was tearing with the beauty of the moment he found himself in.

Oh well, we better get him some scotch tape then. Also, this sentence is telling and obvious. We can see it's supposed to be a beautiful moment, but outright telling us so is boring.

>He loved the teal pony with all his heart.

Why thank you for telling us something that should be obvious.

>He was so proud of her; she was delivering his foal.

Again, this is an excellent example of telling instead of showing. Telling would be when you say things outright to the reader instead of implying them, which is boring and unengaging. I can't feel close to the characters if you tell me all of their feelings and what they're doing directly. At the end of the review, I'll tell more about this showing/telling problem.

>Through raspy breathing, the lovely mare began to speak to her love.

Don't have actions that "begin to happen" unless they continue onwards throughout the scene. Since it's a single action, it should just happen. I also think you could do better by replacing "began to speak" with describing the way she's talking. "Through raspy breathing" is one part of that, but perhaps it would be better if you just changed this sentence to describe her pain and what she's doing.

>“Valiantwing, I… Can’t believe this moment has finally come. I love you so much, I never thought we would make it this far.”

Random capitalization. Since it's still a part of the previous sentence, that "can't" should be lowercase.

>“I know, love. This is the happiest moment of my life; I would never trade these moments with you for anything in the world.” He comforted her as her convulsions continued.

I'm not sure if this is a speaking verb or not. Since I don't see any accompanying actions, I can't really say. If you specifically mentioned what he was doing physically (rubbing her back or stroking her mane) then you could leave the sentence as is (add in said action into the sentence of course). If you meant comforting as in a tone of voice, then you have to change the period after "world" into a comma, then lowercase the following pronoun (He).

Confounded dialogue attribution rules and all. They get confusing sometimes depending on what you want to do with your writing.

>He comforted her as her convulsions continued.

How so? What was he doing? Was it only his words? Did he do something specific like stroke her mane? Rub her back? I'm seeing a blank picture here.

>Lightning struck outside the window. Rain pattered on the glass window of the small hospital room. The sky was almost black with the rolling clouds. Her breathing quickened.

The way you list these actions sounds like a list. It's unvaried and boring. You need to vary your sentence structures a bit more. For more variation, see this link:

http://www.towson.edu/ows/sentences.htm

>Valiantwing turned to the mare and smiled.

Well, the nurse just walked in, so who are you talking about? You really should name her, you know?

>“I’ll be here, the whole time. I will not let go of your hooves, do you understand me?”

This dialogue sounds a bit... off for some reason. For one, remove the first comma as it's not needed there. Second, you use a contraction in the first sentence, but not in the second, which sounds weird. Also, he's already holding onto her hooves and it sounds weird for him to mention a specific body part since it's ordinary. Perhaps it should be like this:

"I'll be here for you. I won't let go, no matter what."

Anyhoo, just a suggestion. Also, have a link to some interesting information about dialogue.

http://mayracalvani.com/2011/08/30/tips-to-write-better-dialogue/

>She nodded, and calmed down, knowing that her love would never let her go.

Isn't it repetitive to say that he wouldn't let her go, since he just said so in the line above? Also, that first comma isn't necessary so you can delete it. However, I guess it's not technically incorrect so you can just leave it depending on how you want to word your sentence.

>Everything would be okay…

For all intents and purposes, it would be fine to just use a period there. Normally, ellipses are frowned upon in narrative and are usually requested to be rewritten. I know you probably to emphasize a pause there, but it's really unneeded as readers will assume a pause because they reached a scene break anyway.

I wonder why scene breaks don't show up on fimfiction? I see a faintly yellow line separating the scenes, but that's it. Blame fimfic's formatting I guess.

Since you keep repeating this line throughout this chapter, the reader can only assume that it will NOT be okay given that you keep foreshadowing so heavy-handedly that something bad is going to happen.

>Valiantwing was gazing upon the most beautiful thing he had ever seen in his life.

I thought the most beautiful thing he had ever seen was the mare with the magenta eyes?

>His words sank in, and understanding shone through.

Not sure what this looks like.

>His love had been spent from her ordeal, and was resting in the nearby hospital bed.

Is there a reason you're not naming her and purposely making it confusing for the reader to figure out who it is? At first I thought you were talking about Valiantwing till you mentioned "her."

>She was asleep.

Telling and boring. If you want to make the reader daww, describe what she was doing. You mention her sleeping restlessly in a later sentence, so why not describe that then?

>Her coat was blue, her hair a bright, blinding white.

While technically correct, it reads a bit awkwardly. Allow my fellow reviewer to explain in this link.

http://fillerarc.tumblr.com/post/28620583027/subject-verb-object-another-object-verbing

>She was making soft breathing noises, sleeping restlessly in the new world she now found herself.

Another opportunity for showing lost.

>She was the awesomest baby in all of Equestria.

Sounds kinda weird for the narrator to express an opinion like this. It's unnecessary and breaks my suspension of disbelief.

>She looked… off. Withered. Her crib was blocked off by a glass chamber.

It would be nice if I could actually see what this is. Go into a bit more detail please, and use specific words.

>She was dying. The bundle of newfound joy, the life in the storm, was dying.

I think your repetition for emphasis is too heavy handed. This chapter is only 1300 words, but you've written six different sentences that repeat the exact same words in a really tiny amount of space. Yea, I get that it's raining, no need to say it five different times. Yes, the mare is beautiful. Yes, she is tired. Etc, etc. But I want to see more, instead of you simply repeating yourself. Doing that should be kept to a minimum for when it really counts.

>A unicorn mare, adorned with a white smock, walked in the room.

Was she already in the room and just walking around for no apparent reason? I kid, I kid. What you want is "into the room" because otherwise she was simply walking in said room. Sound confusing? Yes, the English language always is. Teehee.

>She whispered quietly to Valiantwing, so as not to disturb the sleeping pegasus.

Not sure if you're referring to Baby Rainbow Dash (I assume that's who it is) or the wife (who you still haven't named, which is confusing).

>We can make sure she doesn’t suffer, try to recover her, but her chances are slim.

"try to recover her?" What an awkward sounding phrase. What does that even mean? Did she get lost in a well or something?

>Valiantwing nodded, not truly comprehending what he had just heard.

Could you show us instead of outright telling us?

>Tears began to run down the stallion's face.

Be careful of "started to" or "began to" verbs. It's normally better to make your subjects take direct action and just used the "verb-ed" form instead. Instead of saying "started to walk" then just say "walked." I mention this earlier in the review because you have it happen about four or five times in the first chapter alone.

>He stroked his love’s white mint mane, as she began stirring slightly in her satin lined bedding.

And immediately in the next sentence, you use more "began to" actions, which slow down the narrative. So many "began to" verbs, so many...

And... you still haven't named her. It just seems so weird when you purposefully turn a character's only identification as an object of something else as related to their description. So what are you going to do? Only identify her as "Rainbow Dash's mom" later on?

>He was trying desperately to hold on to all the hope he had left inside himself.

How? HOW!? I must know! Please show instead of tell, please.

>After every storm there will always be hope.

Missing a comma after storm.

>Almost as if she knew what to do. She always seemed to know what to do, the stallion noticed.

Repeating yourself again. :o

>hooked up to a magical device that was only thing keeping her clinging to this world

device that was the only thing

>She looked away

This is telling.

>Valiantwing stepped through the doors, and offered to comfort her.

Delete that comma.

>She walked over to the window, and looked out into the dark sky, cursing the storm and the promise she was told so long ago.

Delete the first comma

>She screamed out once more, and collapsed on the hard tiled floor, tears pouring down her chin, hitting the floor with a soft pat, pat.

Hmm, this seems to be a recurring issue. Delete the first comma and then take a look at this link cause I'm not sure if you know when commas are supposed to be used. Commas go before conjunctions sometimes but there are exceptions. It's a mite confusing sometimes but eventually you get used to it.

http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/607/02/

>The clouds began to separate and disappear.

Oh no! More "began to" verbs. Kill it! Also, you're missing a space after this paragraph. I wasn't sure if you accidentally left it out or meant to merge it with the next line or what.

>The most beautiful rainbow

Do you have any other adjectives you could use? You've used "beautiful" like six times now and each time, it's another form of telling as it describes nothing. How am I supposed to get emotionally involved in your fic if you keep giving me a blank slate.

>She walked over to her beloved daughter.

Saying beloved just keeps telling me the obvious. It's better to keep it implied by their actions, which is coming up anyway.

>She knew if she didn’t do what she had to do next, they’re beautiful creation wouldn’t be long for this world.

She knew that if she didn't do what she had to do, their beautiful creation wouldn't have been long for the world.

>Their daughter’s mane began to glow.

Say glowed instead of "began to glow."

>She began to cry.

Oy, more "began to" verbs.

>The kind of crying that newborns made: a healthy beautiful noise of life.

More word repetitiveness with the word "beautiful." Also, you're missing a comma between healthy and beautiful.

>She was weak.

More telling.

>“You are so wonderful! you are my baby.

Capitalize the second "You."

>“You are so wonderful! you are my baby. I will be a part of you forever, Rainbow Dash.”

Kinda sounds robotic. The dialogue seems... off somehow.

>It seemed as if every doctor in the hospital had rushed into the room to see the commotion.

The narrator is not allowed to be unsure of himself unless he is actually a character. Therefore, remove all instances of "seemed to" from your narrative unless you're mentioning that it only seemed that way to a certain person. Since I don't really feel like I'm in the mindset of Valientwing or anypony else, I feel like a hovering ghost over the entire proceedings.

>The filly was going to be okay. Everything was going to be okay…

Not sure if repeating this line constantly was intentional or not.
>> No. 115992
>>115990

Sorry, it was too long and got cut off. Anyhoo, here is the rest of the review for part one of Hope in the Storm.


Final Thoughts:

Every writer struggles with the showing vs telling issue, but it has something to do with pulling your reader into your story and making them want to spend time with the characters of your fic. When done correctly, it will make time fly by quickly and engage your readers, leaving an everlasting impression on them. To make matters short, here's a link to fellow reviewer CartoonGeld about Showing versus Telling.

>>89502

It's long, but trust me, it's helpful. Also, since I've only seen like three lines of dialogue, I can't quite comment on that yet, so I'll just stick to what I've seen. For more showing vs telling links, here you go (borrowed from various reviewers).

http://victoriamixon.com/2010/12/01/the-6-degrees-of-show-vs-tell-rated-by-quality/
http://www.coffeehouseforwriters.com/fictionfix/0505Grossack.html
http://jerz.setonhill.edu/writing/creative1/showing/

Kay, moving on. As for your first chapter, to be frank it's quite weak. Your story becomes a lot better later on, but many readers will end up quitting before they get that far. At most, you have three sentences to hook your reader. First, you start with a weather report which is the most common beginning for a fic, which is quite boring, then you keep the reader at arm's length because you don't give us any insight as to their thoughts. The only thing that clues us in is their dialogue, which is a bit cliched. If you want your reader to actually care, then consider rewriting it from the dad's perspective.

Another thing that's quite annoying is the fact that you don't name the mom and instead repeatedly refer to her with various descriptions. This is another form of something we call "Lavender unicorn syndrome" here. Normally it's okay if you use it sparingly, but you have had plenty of opportunities to name the mom and yet didn't. It's very grating and confusing when you don't use a name.

Lavender Unicorn Syndrome:

Anyhoo, here's the definition of LUS (provided by Vanner):

Avoid Lavender Unicorn Syndrome. Lavender Unicorn Syndrome is what happens when, instead of using your characters name or a pronoun, you repeatedly use other descriptors for them. You only have to describe your characters once, and again if something about them changed. Just remember that “Lavender Unicorn Syndrome” affects hundred of ponies every year. Symptoms include cyan pegasi, white alicorns, and of course, lavender unicorns. But there is hope. Ask Nurse Redheart if new and improved PRONOUNS® are right for you. Side effects include better writing, love and adoration of fans, acceptance to EqD, glitter cannons, and dry mouth. PRONOUNS®. Because having a lavender unicorn is no way to go through life.

<end quote>

The most common reason for saying other things besides their name is because they don't want to be repetitive. Well, that's what pronouns are for. Besides, you're still being repetitive but when you use names, at least it's less confusing. If your writing is still too confusing with pronouns or you can't get away without saying their names dozens of times, then you have to rewrite your sentences and reorder them to operate from a single viewpoint. That way, the pronouns refer to that character and you can stop with all of the "cream colored pony" and "mint colored pony" jazz.

For your sake, here are some more links that help explain the dangers of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome.

http://eznwords.tumblr.com/post/21010451863/ellyewess

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/mind-your-language/2010/jun/02/my-synonym-hell-mind-your-language

http://trickster.org/arduinna/epithet.html

Now you didn't use the most common form of "color + type of pony" but you used another variation. "His love, the mare, etc" You never addressed her with an actual name. You should probably fix that.

More Notes:

I flipped over to chapter two real quick and saw that you changed from third person over to first person. If you were going to do that, I wonder why you didn't just go from Valientwing's mindset for the first chapter then. It would have been a great way to get some insight as to his thoughts and feelings as well as help the readers feel closer to the characters. I get that you were trying to say that Rainbow Dash's birth was harsh, but the massive amount of telling and the way the narrative was written is just... Well, the execution was lacking. Unfortunately, you can't really cut it if it's an important event later in the story. If it were up to me, I'd suggest rewriting it into the other point of view of the dad because frankly, it's really jarring to have it be third person and then switch to 1st person. Considering that your introduction is also 1st person, I'm not sure where the story is going. I also promptly forgot about the introduction cause it really wasn't that important.

Now, your story has the potential of being a great story. Whoever the pre-reader was definitely saw that the premise is fine, even if the execution needs a lot of work. I did all I could with the line by line, but it seems there's an even greater force underneath your writing that needs some help. Execution is everything in the writing world however, so you have a long way to go. No worries though, we all do, considering we're only amateurs.

Now, as of this post I only read Chapter One, which isn't fair to your story, so obviously I'm not done reviewing it. I just wanted to post what I had so far so you could take a look into your own writing tics. From what I can see, you have a lot of problems with showing vs telling, began to verbs, repetition of words and sentences, misused commas and a few other things here and there. But never fear, I'll do my best to keep helping you. Please don't be discouraged by my massive walls of text. I only did it for your benefit. Anyhoo, I shall work on chapter two and get it to you as soon as possible. I'm pretty sure that if I didn't line by line, I should be done quicker but I wanted to make sure you had enough examples as to why stuff doesn't work. I think I missed a few things cause I lost track of where I was during the long review, but I figure I got most of it.

If you would like more information, please let me know and I'll do my best to elaborate. Believe me, the party's just begin. If you really want to improve, then I'll help since Seattle asked. But it's not going to be easy. If you can accept that, then here we go! Heeyah!
>> No. 116002
File 134490622678.jpg - (23.74KB , 395x376 , ohshit.jpg )
116002
>>115921
May I have a word with you, sir? I'm afraid something major has come up with my story. I still want a review, but hear me out for a second. I don't want to go into the details, but the short version is, there was just a MAJOR FyayING PLOT TWIST in the already-tangled web that is the canon of TF2. In light of the upcoming Mann vs Machine update, everything has changed. And because my story takes place in the hypothetical future of the TF2-niverse, I need to make sure I'm being faithful to the new canon. So, long story short, the word count I gave you probably isn't accurate any more. Just letting you know.
>> No. 116006
>>115923
I appreciate the heads-up and can understand a busy schedule. You fairly warned me and I accepted that, so don't expect much fuss from me, but it's nice to know I wasn't forgotten.

Thank you and I still look forward to your review.
>> No. 116019
I tried sending in a story to Equestria Daily the other day. They recently replied to me saying it had "systemic issues" that needed to be addressed before it could pass. I honestly don't know what they're talking about, but they said coming here to get it reviewed could help.

Title: Captain Colt Stallion

Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/44208/Captain-Colt-Stallion

Summary: It's a bird. It's a plane. It's a pegasus. It's a griffon. It's a... Oh, I give up. Wait, it's the one and only Captain Colt Stallion, the superhero who is half colt, half stallion, and 100% stallionly. And he is the only thing standing in the way of evil-doers from destroying the proud city of Maretropolis... Celestia and Luna help us all.

Tags: Comedy, Random, Alternate Universe

Please keep in mind when reviewing this that this fic is a parody and is meant to be silly and stupid. Also, the character's name itself is meant as a logic-lacking joke. Thank you.
>> No. 116024
File 134491227792.jpg - (5.70KB , 225x225 , derpy again.jpg )
116024
Me and Mole talked over the doc and have come to a conclusion somewhat resembling a review. I'm not sure if he still plans to write one but we're cool at least from my perspective.
>> No. 116036
I'd just like to say that Part 10 of my fic, Not Exactly Green; No ODST Is, was reviewed, and I acknowledge.
>> No. 116038
File 134492130459.jpg - (27.79KB , 400x305 , Frank+Zappa (6).jpg )
116038
>>115734 Bountiful Rainbows Dawning Ark
>> No. 116062
File 134492707720.jpg - (73.68KB , 502x480 , strand_paget.jpg )
116062
>>116002
My dear friend.

What you show is dedication, and I for one certainly cannot fault you for that. Take as much time as you need to ensure that Cataclysm is exactly as you envisioned it. I keenly await the time whence I can begin your review
>> No. 116064
>>116024
hope I was able to help you in some way. I know it wasn't the most conventional review... I probably learned more from you than you did from me. but I did want to do a little follow-up with some things I think could be useful to take away:

why do I write?/would I want to read this? - this seemed to really clear things up in our chat (I can say it has been a touchstone in my own process, as well). don't misunderstand it as "am I a good writer?" - as amateurs or aspiring writers, we tend to take on things that are too difficult for us, anyways (it's how we grow, hopefully). keep this question close; it will become more difficult as you face external pressures (that's the "effort" part!)

revision/using criticism - the only point of revision is to strive toward manifesting intentionality in your writing: "am I getting across what I mean to?" this is connected to the previous point. it is a simple, but deep, process, and something which can be refined with practice. it's work, but it doesn't have to be labor - try five minutes a day for two weeks, no more, no less.

when you have initiative in your revision process, you will be able to use criticism more effectively. instead of being "pushed around" and losing a sense of what you are doing (thus getting "burnt out"), you will be able to relate information you get as a dialogue to your work, rather than as a checklist. this, too, is a skill that can be refined with practice - you're pretty low on ego, which is a great advantage.

author bias syndrome/identifying with habits - on a technical level, one of the problems with your writing is that it is almost entirely dialogue. this is probably symptomatic of a bias toward a visual medium - it reads very "script-like". as we talked about, it also reflects "author bias syndrome" - you know the characters feelings, the flow of their actions, what the scene looks like, etc., but the audience will form their own ideas based soley on the details you present. go back and read one of your favorite books with a "craftperson's eye".

you have an initiative role in shaping your artistic (yes, even in fanfic) voice. try new things - like mixing dialogue with exposition and action - even if you aren't good at them (this, too, can be refined with practice!) don't identify with your habits: "well, I write a lot of dialogue, so that must be my 'style'." the aim is to command language, rather than have language command you.

***

good luck!
>> No. 116096
File 134494811431.jpg - (17.18KB , 300x329 , 399411_122146571262914_912008048_n.jpg )
116096
Good morning. Such a fun phrase to say, and it always brings a smile to somepony’s face who needs it. I really ought to do reviews in the morning more often; it leaves me with such cheer for the rest of the day. Ahem, attention deficit ramblings aside, here’s your review.

Your first chapter was so-so. It needs a better opening, as I made mention to more than once in the Doc, and you’ve got some lines in there that are really telly.

I question most of your phrasing, but there’s nothing I can find technically wrong with it, so it’s probably just my opinion.

Also, who’s this Hal. Furthermore, who is Snake? I’m guessing this is a Crossover from Metal Gear Solid, as that’s the only place I’ve ever heard the name snake before, but I never played the game itself. Enlighten me, as your reader, who these ponies/humans are.

I do like the idea of Pinkie Pie not only being able to, but being quite familiar with interdimensional travel. I can’t wait to see how you use it in the story

>>CH 2

The entire first half is just one big info dump. Not very engaging at all; I skipped overskimmed it. It got interesting again when he woke up in Fluttershy’s cottage, and I actually enjoyed the rest of the story even without the information from your pointless info dump.

Why does Pinkie keep calling Hal Otacon?

Well, at least you managed to make the second info dump engaging, but a lot of the stuff from that game is unknown to me, and you left most of it up to the reader’s previous knowledge of the game so you about fail on creating familiarity with the characters.
>> No. 116109
File 134495234435.jpg - (27.72KB , 320x271 , 380664_346592988722272_339685176079720_833887_2015314431_n.jpg )
116109
Let's see if I can't bang out another review before class this morning. If not, I'll have it done later tonight.
>>113837
You've also been sitting awhile, let's do this.
>> No. 116112
File 134495516759.jpg - (9.31KB , 156x192 , spellcard_2.jpg )
116112
>don't identify with your habits: "well, I write a lot of dialogue, so that must be my 'style'." the aim is to command language, rather than have language command you.
Mighty profound nugget you got there, son. Interesting way to look at it, though I believe the umbrella mantra is "balance/moderation is key".
>> No. 116115
File 134495671818.jpg - (5.37KB , 225x224 , 25696344356.jpg )
116115
Wow. Not the worst I’ve seen, but pretty bad.

You’ve a few mix ups of common homonyms, the most prominent of which being your<>you’re.

There’s also lots of tell, and LUS scattered throughout most of it, and you keep capitalizing unicorn.

You use inconsistent dialoging for Applejack; words that would sound the same for most ponies, are phonetically inconsistent in your writing.
>“Twah, I know what you’re trying to do,
If “Twi” (Twah-ee) is shortened to “TwaH”, should not “I” (Ah-ee) also be shortened to “Ah”? You keep switching between the two, keep those consistent. You do the same thing a lot with my and mah.

And your phrasing: oh my. Your descriptors could use a lot of work, like A LOT a lot. You try to sound all smart and stuff, but your word choice is… well let’s just say highly questionable.
>Twilight had keeled over, and was now being straddled by the farmer.
Most would agree this implies some sort of incoming sexual act. Also, LUS.

Applejack is very out of character; as the element of honesty, she ought to be able to tell her friends the truth.

Your story carries far too many mistakes, and is overall too incomprehensible, for me to focus clearly on it. I mainly skimmed the last 1000 words, which was far easier than it should have been. I still never understood the leaky roof part, was that supposed to be some sort of metaphor for Applejack’s ill-conceived “not-a-lie”?

Here just–Just read this entire thing. All of it. Every word. http://derpy.me/EznGuide
>> No. 116117
File 134495673250.jpg - (225.80KB , 475x605 , tumblr_ludw4o9KZZ1qde93jo1_r3_500.jpg )
116117
Question the First:
How do you remove your ric from the queue?

I put up my Twilight Writes a "Dear Seabiscuit" Letter, but I've decided to refocus my energies on my primary fic.

Question the Second
Is it possible/permissable/etc. to request a particular reviewer, assuming they don't have a thread of their own?

I rather like Dublio's thoroughness. I do of course understand that he would in no way be obligated to accept the task of reviewing my behemoth.
>> No. 116118
File 134495663852.png - (167.82KB , 479x507 , Fluttershy131949820259.png )
116118
>>115892
Oh this is short, I can take this.

>and trust me, a lot of ponies would do very questionable things to be your coltfriend or fillyfriend
What?

(Fluttershy)>and outflown Rainbow Dash
When?

I'm not sure how to feel about this. I mean, we never see their relationship begin or see Twilight and Fluttershy's feelings build up. So it's like reading the last chapter of a book, after the climax has already happened and we're just winding down. Because of this, there's no emotional attachment to their relationship. And at the end, everything goes back to canon status quo, where none of them are in romantic relationships. It almost feels like one of those Spike x Rarity "friendzone" troll fics.

If you really, truly care about writing a [sad] TwiShy fic, then go back to the beginning and write about how their relationship started, using this as an outline. Then keep going 'til you get to where Twilight was writing the letter.

Other than that, your grammar was fine; I only found one mechanical error. But reading an entire fic in italics is a bit annoying.
>> No. 116119
File 134495676438.jpg - (7.63KB , 202x250 , 25667809453.jpg )
116119
>>116117
It's usually acceptable, but it's up to the reviewer themselves if they want to take it on.

I don't personally know Dubs, so I can't speak for him, but your request is certainly not impolite.
>> No. 116121
>>116117
1) Too late! I already reviewed it. :D >>116118

2) Yes you can (and should) request a specific reviewer See "List of TTG Regulars" http://tinyurl.com/TGRegulars
>> No. 116123
>>116117
>How do you remove your ric from the queue?
You can make a post in this thread saying that you'd like your fic removed.

>Is it possible/permissable/etc. to request a particular reviewer, assuming they don't have a thread of their own?
Yes. This is actually encouraged by some reviewers as it shows research on the writer's part and as it also increases the likelyhood that you'll get a review sooner than--

>>116119
>>116121

Oh, okay.
>> No. 116124
File 134495719631.jpg - (7.21KB , 239x211 , 23948652-309.jpg )
116124
>>116121
Heh, I'm still not listed there. Maybe I should poke somepony. >.>
>> No. 116125
>>116124
I guess I could add you. PM me on FimFic about it.
>> No. 116127
File 134495820807.jpg - (8.02KB , 225x225 , innocent scootaloo.jpg )
116127
>>116125
Well I sent you the message, but you might be a bit shocked by the username.
>> No. 116128
File 134495836568.jpg - (86.79KB , 680x478 , tdkr-bane-voice-07242012.jpg )
116128
>>116118
>Oh this is short, I can take this.
Hn. Beaten to the punch.

>What?
I was going for the equivalent of "people would kill to date you," but trying to keep it closer to the spirit of the show.

>When?
"The Return of Harmony: Part 2". >That big. Dumb. MEANIE!

>I'm not sure how to feel about this. I mean, we never see their relationship begin or see Twilight and Fluttershy's feelings build up. So it's like reading the last chapter of a book, after the climax has already happened and we're just winding down. Because of this, there's no emotional attachment to their relationship. And at the end, everything goes back to canon status quo, where none of them are in romantic relationships. It almost feels like one of those Spike x Rarity "friendzone" troll fics.
Ouch. I assure you that there was nothing troll-y intended. It was partly an effort to explore one of Kurt Vonnegut's writing rules, namely, "Start as close to the end as possible." Also, my other fic is almost preturnaturally wordy; I thought I'd dabble in minimalism.

>If you really, truly care about writing a [sad] TwiShy fic, then go back to the beginning and write about how their relationship started, using this as an outline. Then keep going 'til you get to where Twilight was writing the letter.
To be honest--and I'm sorry to have wasted your time--I do not care to add to this. I had to write it--if that makes sense--but I have no love for it; thus my attempt to bow out of the queue.

>Other than that, your grammar was fine; I only found one mechanical error. But reading an entire fic in italics is a bit annoying.
For the sake of my growth, what was the error? As for the italics, I apologize; it is my habit to italicize in-universe writing, but I can certainly see how that could get old.

>>116119
Thank you.
>> No. 116129
>>116128
>It was partly an effort to explore one of Kurt Vonnegut's writing rules, namely, "Start as close to the end as possible."
Yes, but you must also follow the three-act structure. See: http://penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/amnesia-and-story-structure

>To be honest--and I'm sorry to have wasted your time--I do not care to add to this. I had to write it--if that makes sense--but I have no love for it; thus my attempt to bow out of the queue.
Oh no, I didn't consider this this to be a waste of time. It was only 1k words, and I'm sure that you'll at least learn something from my review that you can apply to future stories.

Oh, now that I see it again, it wasn't a mechanical error, it was an awkwardly phrased sentence.
>When I feel neutral others think I'm annoyed.
The word "neutral" feels weird for some reason. Maybe it's all the time I spent playing Neverwinter Nights.
>> No. 116131
Please forgive my multilayered ignorance.

How do I go about requesting Dublio's attention? Should I simply note it in my post?
>> No. 116132
>>116131
PMing him in the #fic IRC would probably be faster.
>> No. 116136
>>116132
[Looks at hideous flipper-things where hands should be.]

I'll... look into that. Regardless of how successful I am, thank you for all of your assistance.
>> No. 116140
>>115227

Hi Halcyon. Sorry it's taking so long (friends visiting IRL for a week). I've gone through everything you mentioned in chapter 1. The new version is here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1eR1ZPh96OBelg8V9jNEDc9-yWTPpnrAexkwoIjQmi7k/edit

You mentioned being willing to look at it again after I got finished with it, and I'd appreciate it if you would. I left a couple of comments/questions of my own in there for you.

I've done a pass on chapter 2, but I want to do another one before I give it to you. That should only take a couple of days now. I've been able to find some stuff that I didn't see before, but I'm sure I'm still missing a bunch of errors.

Thanks again for the help. :)
>> No. 116150
>>115878
Quick note on this fic, I clicked the romance box by mistake. this story is ship free.
>> No. 116155
File 134498315785.jpg - (8.63KB , 230x200 , alrighty_then.jpg )
116155
>>116062
Well, I believe I've solved the continuity issue. That didn't take nearly as long as I thought it would. There is still some more of the update to come, however, so it's entirely possible that what I've written could still be Jossed in the coming days. But I'll deal with that as it comes up. I'm ready to receive your review when you're ready to deliver it.
>> No. 116156
File 134498587142.png - (136.00KB , 900x834 , Derpy133281541329.png )
116156
>>115989
Well, that was certainly different.

The part where Pinkie and Twilight just leave you OC there, seems out of character.

The whole thing really feels like a script for a radio show. Since your first person PoV character can't see properly, you never describe anything in too much detail. But that's obviously not what you were going for.

And it is much better than the Derpy fic which shall not be named. It's on his FimFic account. What I'd suggest is, find someone who does FiMfic readings, and collaborate with him/her to make this into a mini radio show, then post it to YouTube.
>> No. 116159
File 134498816091.png - (120.65KB , 560x826 , 289475629.png )
116159
>>116156
>>116156
Wow, a review already, thanks.

I might just try that radio show idea, although like I said: This was just to get over writer's block, it was never supposed to turn into anything.

Sorry about the white text on black--I remember I had the same problem when I read White Box--but I do have a reason for it. Did you notice the way it fades out, and is nearly black by the time you finish? This correlates to how the narrator is fading away into nothing. I tried it with black text on white, but it didn't have the same effect.

As to the horn, I was trying to play off of my OC disliking the 3D aspect of most things, and while a cone is still 3D, it's a lot closer to 2D than an irregularly-shaped pony head. Basically, it was a failed attempt at drawing attention to her being 3D, and him being 2D.

Nothing against you, but I'm going to leave most of your comments concerning tell alone. It's not that I think you're wrong, it's mostly that I think they fit the narration style quite well. I could be wrong, but if I am, I'll probably realize it a few weeks down the road anyway.
>> No. 116160
File 134498859382.png - (374.62KB , 900x900 , Rainbow Dash180894 - artist DrawAlanDraw headphones rainbow_dash.png )
116160
[random][comedy][crossover] (Team Fortress Classic)

https://docs.google.com/document/d/15DLl7LoxTZCyoUxRTYKZOqYVtYsDp-env1Hp1GKrxm4/edit

Synopsis: After finally getting her new headphones, Rainbow Dash is pulled into the craziest battle that Ponyville has ever known.

I mostly what to know if there's anyway I could make this funnier.
>> No. 116161
>>116159
Okay, the parts where we're told what a character is feeling—which, if I recall correctly, are all marked—those you need to change. Here's the example soundslikeponies gave me:

>Lyra was sad
>Lyra's lip quivered.

See, it's very easy to fix and will greatly improve the quality of your fic.
>> No. 116164
File 134498986880.jpg - (39.72KB , 960x786 , 70's pinkamena.jpg )
116164
>>116161
True, but keep in mind the narration style. It's told purely through thought. there's not dialogue, there's no scene description, it's pure thought. This is unfamiliar territory for most, myself included, but I believe the point is in focusing on what the narrator is actually saying in their head. You don't go "Oh, Lyra's lip is quivering, she must be sad." Instead, you notice that her lip is quivering, and make the jump to "Lyra is sad". It's almost like reverse show. Now--like I said--this is unfamiliar territory for me, so I could actually be completely wrong here, but that's just the way I saw it. A few of the points could be made better, but one's like
>Whatever she was doing seems to have failed
ought to be left alone for this narration style, IMO.

Correct me if I'm wrong.
>> No. 116166
>>116164
I really need to get a transparent vector of that image already. It looks weird with the white background.
>> No. 116170
File 134499172956.png - (96.60KB , 490x283 , 134095605117.png )
116170
>>116164
Okay so the "I was wrong" feeling set in a lot quicker this time. I might just fix those now.
>> No. 116176
=== At the Library ===


> The shimmering light of the shrinking flame illuminated the frazzled mane and sagging eyelids of a mare on a mission to finish taking notes on the last chapter of Miracles of Modern Magic before she went to bed.

Shimmering, shrinking, illuminated, and frazzled are all rather large words, and they're placed close together in the sentence. There may not be anything particularly wrong with this, but it seems overloaded to me.


> A soft snoring let her know Spike had already fallen asleep on the couch while trying to get through one of the Daring Do books Rainbow Dash had been so interested in the past few months.

It looks like this should be broken into several sentences. At the very least I think there should be an extra 'in' in "... Rainbow Dash had been so interested in <in> the past few months."


> Although it wasn't that late, She had just received this book from the Canterlot Archives, and simply couldn't sleep soundly knowing there was unlearned information calling to her from downstairs.

Why should she feel sleepy if it isn't that late? To me this sentence looks contradictory.


> "And?" Twilight completed quietly, growing somewhat impatient with her usually straightforward pal.

'And' doesn't really complete AJ's thought from the previous paragraph. Maybe 'prompted' would fit better here.


> "No trouble at all. I think it'll be fun!" Twilight replied, returning her friends smile.

'Friends' is possessive, so it becomes "friend's."


> She hoped Applejack wouldn't mind her indulging her latent desire to instruct on her sister, but then again, she wouldn't have asked if she didn't want her help.

This looks like it should be rewritten more clearly.



=== Breakfast with the Apples ===


After a second read through the story, I noticed that you have Applejack nonchalantly glance over Apple Bloom's homework and tell her that it 'looks good.' But later on, in the scene where AJ and RD are at a cafe, you have her sweating things out as she tries to avoid the discovery of her secret. If AJ shows anxiety because she can't read, maybe she would have shown some anxiety in this scene as well?


> "Don't you fret silly filly. Twilight said she's gonna start helpin' ya after school, startin' today," she explained, heading back toward the stove and stirring the remaining bit of oatmeal in the pot.

I think that 'while' should come after "she explained, ..." Like this instance, there are a number of other sentences that show a character's actions but seem to be missing a few connecting words. These two for example:

> “Go on then, Ah’ll finish cleanin’ th’ kitchen,” Granny insisted, straining to rise from her rocker before getting her hooves under her.
> “Yes ma’am.” Applejack nodded, straightening her hat and heading out of the front screen door.

For the last one, this looks more correct to me:
“Yes ma’am.” Applejack nodded and straightening her hat before heading out the front door.



=== Lunch with AJ and RD, and Tutoring with Twilight ===


> “Right! How could Ah have missed ‘em,” she laughed, a bead of sweat forming along her brow and sliding down her jaw line.

I think both 'form' and 'slide' should be in their past tenses here.


> “Twilight is expectin’ us after school, and that’s when we’re gonna show up. C’mon now.” She nudged her gently, as Rarity and Rainbow Dash both bid them goodbye and headed into town.

You need the past tense of bid here.


> Unlike her pal Rainbow, she wasn’t much afforded the luxury of daytime sleeping, so she took the chance and ran—er, slept with it.

Replace 'much' with 'often'.



=== Final thoughts ===


From what I remember of the show, your characterizations seem good. Only Applejack seemed a little off to me. I think this may give the story a somewhat contrived feel, since you may not be able to infer AJs behavior from the television series.

After reading and reviewing your story, I think I am beginning to understand how you 'show' something subtle like "Applejack can't read" without doing it in a ham-fisted way or just stating it as exposition. I think you played that part pretty well.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this and wouldn't mind reading whatever parts follow.


Note: This is my first review. I hope it looks okay, but if anyone reads this and feels the need to offer suggestions or point out horrible flaws, please do so.
>> No. 116179
>>116176
Thanks for the review! I appreciate all the tips, with one minor point of contention.

>All totaled, she had gotten possibly six hours of sleep in the past two days.

This sentence is right after the sentence that sounded contradictory.

I'll look into everything else, though. Thanks for picking it up!
>> No. 116180
File 134499762169.png - (718.18KB , 1500x941 , 54352 - Nightmare_Moon artist sonicgirl21.png )
116180
>>115656
I do believe you look familiar, dear author. I would be more than happy to review your work.
>> No. 116191
Tags:
Romance, Sad, Comedy, Slice of Life

Synopsis:
When Twilight springs some great news on her friends, she didn't seem to notice that Rainbow was less than ecstatic. In fact, it was all the pegasus could do to not pin her down and force her to take it back! Now, time is running out, and Rainbow Dash has to make a decision. Should she take a chance? Nothing is worse than the road not traveled, right?

Wrong.

Link:
http://www.fimfiction.net/story/36788/Last-Chance

This is a one-shot.

EqD said:
"Excessively stacked descriptors and considerably purple prose in the beginning especially. It’s unnecessary and detracting.

Increasingly awkward phrasing. Lines like the following serve only to muddle your story, and you have many of them. // voice called out lamely. A brown stallion glanced up at its owner / swayed to and fro from her vigorous pulling / adjusted her the bow in her hoof.

Variety of dialogue tagging mistakes // I guess this is it then, huh?She thought to herself. / She propped her head up with a hoof and stared into her drink, “Nothin' at all.” / “She's sleeping.” he deadpanned. / Twilight Sparkle!” she paused.

You have a really rough time transitioning between characters and keeping it clear who’s doing what.
Semicolon misuse.

You really don’t need to stack a modifier on every adverb. Let your characters actions and dialogue speak for itself once in a while, because it actually is strong enough. It’s your narration that’s overbearing and feels like it’s forcing matters."

Additional Comments:
Looking for a second review after applied corrections from the first one. Again, I would like Pascoite to review this for me. I would also like to thank him for his first review, as I think I forgot to earlier.
>> No. 116199
>>116176
Also, if you could put the MAJOR CONFLICT of the story in spoiler script, that'd be great.
>> No. 116218
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116218
I'm a bit tired, but I'll say I've been trying to get through the first chapter of >>115464 so I can have some modicum of I-know-what-I'm-talking-about when and if I can muster critique for character and story development. When I say "trying" I really mean it. The first chapter is too full of mundane details about travel, places, daily routines and bog-standard introductions between one character and another, without enough conflict-building or foreshadowing to balance it out. Also, what happened to Pocket Watch? The story begins with a perspective centered around him, and then he all of a sudden disappears.

It sounds altogether too much like an uneventful travelogue. That is, up until the gossip in the establishment that sells and encourages on its premises the public consumption of caffeinated beverages. Even then, it's too little and too late; it doesn't strike me as compelling, juicy or conspicuous enough to form a compelling basis for conflict in the story. Reading through the chapter, I had to go back multiple times to look for important details. I feared I had missed some important MacGuffin, Checkhov Gun or character development amongst the sightseeing, pastries and waking up in the morning. Alas, all that appears to be mere fluff; our protagonist is off to a different city for inexplicable reasons (the only one formally given is "wanderlust").
>> No. 116223
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116223
>>116218
yeah, I'm not at all proud of the first chapter at the moment. I'm also not terribly proud of the second chapter, either. haven't taken the chance to do a sweep of it since I started getting my first impressions from people, so I know it's bad. Which is why I'm here. I need to know what's wrong with it before I can fix it.

I also need to know what's working so I don't break it.

not trying to rush you or anything, just know that I appreciate the input considerably. doing this for EqD's national writing month, and it's all about quantity. Just putting something to paper. I'm way behind as it is because I keep looking back and fussing over early details. once august begins to come to a close, I'm going to start doing rewrites.

>rubic's sparkle seems to becoming my go-to picture. odd.
>> No. 116234
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116234
>>114209
Welp, I'm awake, and this has been sitting for two weeks. It would seem your wait is over, Glue factory.
"Here's your chance to get the best of me, hope your hand is hot. Come on clown, let's see what you've got!"

Heh, sorry. Couldn't resist
>> No. 116236
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116236
Title: Through Innocent Eyes

Tags: Sad, dark

Description: After his father’s death, Pip was left with one parent to comfort him, but she wasn’t a mother anymore. Grievance rolled into alcoholism and her life spiralled downward. For Pip, his family is broken, and only with the help of Twilight can he begin to see again.

Links: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1CTvVSCaIcop12iVSqLu2HN_HjY3QSU5xg5E8qs9N7pg/edit

Notes: The synopsis needs work, I know. would my reviewer spare me a few details of how to write a good one or at least give me a useful link, Thanks.
>> No. 116243
File 134504004698.jpg - (6.94KB , 204x204 , 5t746767.jpg )
116243
>>116234
Heh, I actually had this review ready 2 hours ago, but my schools server had a connectivity issue. Anyway, here's your review.


And here’s your first mistake right here.
> slightly shuttering from the memory.
I do believe the word you’re searching for is “shuddering”.
A shutter is a blind or cover for anything that shuts. A shudder is a convulsive shiver, often due to repulsion.

>Can it!
Hardly seems like something Rarity would say.

>In the past, both Pinke and Rarity had a lot to scream about, leading to a dual perfection in the yelling arts.
I can see how this would escape most writers, as normally it is not incorrect. However, because this is a past tense event within a past tense narration, a double “had” is required.

>“... I... I’m sorry for last week because I sorta kinda used your toothbrush!”
Okay, I have to stop for a moment to tell you that this is just like Pinkie Pie. Good job with this one.

>“Aw, now did you have to mention lollipops?” groaned Pinkie.
“Now” ought to be omitted.

>A talent that’s saved her and her friends from angry stomachs over a dozen times.
It should be “That had saved her”. “That’s” is just “that has” as you know, and you are telling about an event in the past, not the present, and it is still within a past tense narration.

I’ve got to say I quite enjoyed Pinkie Pie’s customer/waitress/chef act at the greasy spoon. I didn’t laugh much, but it was still quite entertaining, very reminiscent of a similar scene from “The Emperor’s New Groove”.

>“Ponyville? I knew you two were from otta town, but not that otta town!”
This one’s actually unfamiliar territory for me; I don’t know whether or not an interrobang is allowed in dialogue, but it certainly seems appropriate here. Also it should be “outta”, not “otta”.

>“Never mind that now, Pinkie. I believe I've found our one-way ticked home.
ticket*

>“I look boss, and you’re jealous,” said Pinkie, matter-of-factly, as she bit into her seventh out of thirteen gummy cakes from the half empty box on her back.
Sounds more like something RD would say. Pinkie would have some silly and ridiculous reason as to why such items were truly essential. “Oh come on Rarity, it’s a gumdrop shaped hat! I mean come on, how awesomely terrific is that?”
>For extra measure, she pulled down a pair of bedazzled shades over her eyes.
And the bedazzled shades certainly seem over the top.

>“I live in a bakery, sweetheart. I know cinnamon when I smell it!”
Pinkie Pie would definitely not say sweetheart, rather just “silly”
>”I live in a bakery, silly. I know cinnamon when I smell it”

>That was worse than the gumdrop crack.
Leave that for your reader to decide. Pinkie has been acting hurt, not stung, until this point.

>Rarity seethed at the party pony, her cheeks puffed and bright red. But she still couldn’t think straight. No witty retort, no well-crafted insult, nothing.
Nothing except, "THBPBPTHPT!"
Okay, you’ve lost me. You just passed up a perfectly good opportunity to add some drama to this whole fiasco. Rarity and Pinkie ought to head off in separate directions at this point, but instead they just sit there blowing raspberries at each other, which–-frankly–-has grown old fast. You know, I almost forgot this was a comedy for a moment. In fact, it hardly feels like a comedy at all. You’ve got a good story here, with some great humor thrown in, but I would just stick with the adventure tag.

>Finally, almost simultaneously, the two turned on their hooves and stomped away from each other.
>Finally,
You said it. I would cut the scene above.

>Experts predict that, should ELG tip off balance, nothing save for Celestia herself could stop its rolling path of destruction.
Well this thing better be the size of Canterlot Castle or I’m calling horse apples.

>Though Pinkie second hug was still tight, Rarity was still able to hug back.
Double still and should be “Pinkie’s”.

“Dear Princess Celestia, you should always bring sunblock when your in the desert.
you’re*

>“*I can’t believe our luck,” huffed Rarity.
*Random asterisk

>It was a glamor shot of the monster gumdrop in its full sparkling glory. Overhead it read: ‘Welcome to The Largest Gumdrop In Equestria! The Sweetest Spot on the Frontier! Wish you were here!”
D’awww

>To the tune of: ‘The Road to Morocco’ or: ‘Road to Rhode Island’
Don’t know that song, sorry. I’ll just add my own melody.

“I'd go with Cherry-Changa.”
*slow clap* It’s been a while since I read a decent story that actually went full circle. Nicely done.

Well that was quite the read, but enjoyable. I would lose the comedy tag, as there’s so much else in here that kinda drowns out the humor, most of which is well timed. Your Pinkie Pie and Rarity are spot on, other than a few lines, which I pointed out. The story line is a fun one, and though it starts out as comedy, it takes a beautiful turn, and makes for a very heartwarming tale. Your grammar only had a few cases where it needed to be fixed, and they weren’t elementary mistakes either. If I had to give this a number rating, I would place it at 7.9/10
>> No. 116244
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116244
>>116236
>sad, dark
Bucking claimed!!
I usually take the top of the queue, but it's been a while since I got to do a good sadfic, or a dark one. I'll have it up sometime tomorrow, depending on word count.
>> No. 116259
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116259
>>116244
So you are fond of the darkness, little pegasus?

Hmmm... If Dublio declines to review my work, might you be interested? Sorrow and Shadows are among its tags, though of course only readers can judge whether I uphold those promises.
>> No. 116264
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116264
>>116259
>So you are fond of the darkness, little pegasus?
Oh so much. Cupcakes Rainbow Factory both were delicious. I'd have been more fond of Bubbles if it weren't impeding my own work, but that's beside the point.

If the situation arises, make the request, and if I'm not preoccupied, I would be more than happy to accept.
>> No. 116267
>>116140

Hi again Halcyon. Here's chapter 2: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1rgbBXOeyfL_9fQPzUe-uvQ5cqIyiAz8zb7jvkL-X2Is/edit

This has been quite the learning experience for me, and thanks for the help. :)
>> No. 116273
I'll give it a shot, since "overwordly grace has already been claimed.
>> No. 116274
File 134505122329.png - (168.83KB , 838x953 , 25381_imgcache.png )
116274
>>116273
Please be brutally honest. I need to know where I can improve. Thanks in advance.
>> No. 116283
Okay, kind of in a bind. My usual pre-readers are both on hiatus, and this chapter is due out on Monday. I dropped it in Umbra's thread, but I doubt he will get to it in time. So can I humbly request an expedited review? I understand that there is a queue, but I'm a little on the clock. I hope to not step on too many toes, but we have a few different reviewers here, so hopefully I can get this done in time. Thanks!

Title: Under A Luminous Sky
Author: Jake The Army Guy
Tags: Dark
Word count: 6026
Synopsis: Equestria is a land of peace. Violent crime is almost nonexistent. Ponyville in particular hasn't had a single case of equicide in all its years of existence. But nothing lasts forever.

A body is discovered in the Everfree Forest. Shortly thereafter, an enigmatic stallion arrives at the local library, dispatched by Celestia herself. Faced with an obstinate police force, Twilight and this strange new pony must put the pieces together and catch a killer. But as the blood continues to spill, one thing becomes terrifyingly clear: in the dark of the Everfree, much more is at stake than mere lives.

Chapter Synopsis: Twilight, Rainbow, and Special Agent Bentgrass sneak into the hospital to examine the latest victims.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1QWsEDzDYJ7wiziPFo_nGEJ-tzuCNbXqQqp4P7Wy1hLg/edit

I hope you can review this without having read the previous chapters, mainly because I don't want to force you to read it all. But if you need context, here is the current published story:
http://www.fimfiction.net/story/40634/Under-A-Luminous-Sky

Again, thank you so much!
>> No. 116285
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1lzb5i69zrnZaHSzut1IUBLK9a5n0YofhB9ay5kTbPHA/edit

PM me when you finish chapter four.
>> No. 116291
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116291
>>116285
Thankee kindly! Rest assured, the donation to Bronies for Good is on its way!

As for chapter four, I've started writing it, but I won't have it viewable until after Pascoite gets a chance to make me feel comparatively useless too. I'd like to get what currently exists polished to a shine before I spew out anything more. Thanks for offering yourself to be subjected to further torture, though!
>> No. 116296
I've corrected every synthax error/grammar I've seen.
Now, about the story:
The story in itself is not badly written, it's a good fic, maybe a bit random,but it made me grin a couple of times; The pacing is good, the jokes are ...the kind you'd assume from a fic, which technically isn't bad, it's the average. I enjoyed reading it and now taht is mostly error free, it stands out as a comedy fic worthy of only thumbs. It is silly, but enough not to make it boring... Not bad.
Sage because I can't stop derping.

My review thread(please don't kill me I've been told that's what I'm supposed to do)
>>115804
>> No. 116301
>>115990
>>115992

Continuing from the last review, this is a review of Chapter Two of Hope in the Storm.

Interlude:

>I was told about the moment of my birth by my mother.

"the moment of" is just filler and you can cut it. The sentence will mean pretty much the same thing, but be less bulky.

>I was told about the moment of my birth by my mother. She would tell it to me every night when I was too scared or too restless to go to sleep, back when I was a scaredy-filly.

On second thought, I think it would be better if you combined these two sentences like this:

My mother told me the story of my birth every night, whenever I was too scared or restless, back when I was a scaredy-filly.

Just a suggestion though.

>she said I could make it through the night, if I knew that the sun would be there in the morning, like it had come for me when I was born.

Something's wrong here in what this sentence is saying. I don't understand it at all. It feels incomplete. It sounds like you're missing an "if" in the beginning and the sentence that comes after this one (seen below) seems like it completes the thought. Since I'm not sure what it's saying, perhaps you could clarify?

>Everything will always be okay.

Random tense change.

Everything would always be okay.

>I will remember this story for the rest of my life.

It sounds more natural when you use contractions, so let's go with "I'll."

>It was the most beautiful story I can remember.

This sounds stilted. Also, you really need another adjective besides "beautiful."

>She gave her life for me…

Adding the ellipsis just makes it melodramatic. Turn it into a period instead. That way, the reader will be intrigued by what Rainbow Dash is talking about and wonder if she means what the reader thinks she means.

Chapter Two:

>But none of them would have as much of an effect as the one I met that day.

This kinda seems weird in terms of Rainbow Dash's dialogue and how it doesn't quite sound like her.

>Even at such a young age, I was already a pretty reckless and radical flyer. Ponies all around Canterlot knew me as the Little Bullet.

So Rainbow Dash's fillyhood was in Canterlot, not Cloudsdale? Interesting. (Yea, I noticed that it was Canterlot in the first chapter. I just assumed they moved)

>On this particular summer evening, I trudged into our small house on the edge of Canterlot.

You just mentioned that they were in Canterlot. It would be better if you said "on the edge of the city" in order to reduce repetitiveness.

>I had crashed into Mr. Dew’s cabbage cart, and knocked off one of the wheels.

Delete that comma

>He got really mad, and scolded me for it.

Delete that comma

>My leg hurt really badly, and there was a really bad scrape on it --it was really bad for a young filly, but looking back it probably wasn’t as bad as I thought--.

You just said "really bad" three times. It's a bit repetitive. Also, what's with the "--"? I assume it's an em-dash, but be aware that they're supposed to replace the ending punctuation and are used for interruptions. The second one used here is incorrect usage and should be deleted.

Here, this is an em-dash. (—) Be sure to remove the spaces before and after when using it.

I also think this entire sentence needs to be rewritten a bit to be less repetitive.

>As a young filly, I wasn’t used to getting in trouble. I was worried what my mom was going to say.

Thanks for stating the obvious.

>“ Mr. Dew told me about what happened today.

Delete the space before Mr. Dew.

>I started shaking,

replace the comma with a period.

>The entire exchange with her mom.

Seeing as how she knows about the scrape but mentions being careful while flying first instead of the injury, I have no sympathy for your character. What a real mom would do would be concerned for her child, take care of the scrape, and while dressing up the wound, then they would kindly remind her about being more careful.

The way you currently have it, she only changes her tone when Rainbow starts crying, which seems manipulative.

>I gave her a sad nod.

Saying "sad" is telling, so it would be better to describe the nod with something that denotes something sad aka nodding slowly. "I slowly nodded" might work better.

>My bottom lip started to quiver. Tears started pouring out of my eyes.

Nooo! More "started to" verbs. Die! "Quivered" and "poured" would work fine enough.

>She gave me another squeeze,

Not a speaking verb, so this should be a period.

>“Why would I ever be mad at you? I love you, honey, I just want you to be safe. We’ll wash up that scrape and get you a bandage, and then you should go get in bed. You’ve got a very important day tomorrow.”

See? She knows about the scrape but doesn't talk about it first. I can understand her mentioning being careful if she didn't see the wound, but she did so I think it just sounds off.

>Excitement flowed through my small body.

That's nice, but what does that look like? More showing please.

>I momentarily forgot the pain in my foreleg, and rushed into the bathroom.

Delete that comma.

>She took care of my leg.

This is a great chance to show off some specifics on what she did to show that she was a good mother. Don't gloss over this!

>Just as she was finishing I heard the front door open.

Comma between "finishing" and "I"

>When I was still young enough for him to still hold me

You repeated the word "still"

>He looked at Mom, and smiled at her beauty.

Commas don't always go before "and." Only sometimes. But you seem to put one there every single time. Also, the second clause is telling once again.

>“Alright, Rainbow. I think Mom wants you to get in bed. You’ve got a big day tomorrow! First day of school kiddo!”

Apparently Valientwing is also a psychic and repeated the exact same thing the mom said earlier word for word.

>He carried me to my bedroom, and lay me down on the soft mattress.

No comma

>My leg still hurt really badly, but I wasn’t tired, I didn’t want to go to sleep.

I wasn't tired, so I didn't want to go to sleep.

>The next paragraph

I noticed that as I go along in the story that you definitely like to repeat yourself. When portraying information to the audience, be aware that it's not necessary to say something and say it the exact same way in the next line. Since this is Rainbow thinking about her past, you have to make it actually sound like that instead of filly Rainbow recalling her day. Subtle difference yes I know, but keep track of who is telling the story.

>The rest of the scene

To make a long story short, you repeat the same errors with commas before the word "and", you have too many "started to" actions where they're inappropriate, and the narrative that Rainbow Dash is saying is so cluttered with with many words that make my mouth full. You kinda tend to have a lot of word repetition. Not only that, it's hard for me to grow attached with your characters because you gloss over many important points while making the not-important points stick out. For example, I'd like to see what Rainbow Dash's idea of playing all day actually looks like. What did they do together? You can't just say "Oh they met each other and wow, they got along great just like that." Slow down a little bit, would you?

>He looked sad as I told him I should get home, before mom starts to worry about me. Then I got an idea.

I feel like your story has no build up, a lot of telling, and glossed over details.

>Why don’t you come home with me!

Question mark, not exclamation point.

>How could she say no to me, I was the cutest filly in all of Equestria.

Comma splice, turn that comma into a question mark instead.

>I laughed, and mom chuckled.

delete that comma. Since RD is addressing her as Mom, I'd say to capitalize it, but that's because it sounds like a name. (Because you haven't given the reader her real one yet and it would be inappropriate for RD to call her by her name)

>“Hey there sport! What brings you around here at this late hour?” My mom walked up, and pulled me into her arms.

Be careful where you put your dialogue. Make sure it matches with the character doing the action, or put it on another line. The way this sounds, the mom is the one talking, but it's actually the dad.

>He made a “wow” face as we climbed into our chairs.

More telling.

>my mom turned her magenta eyes on my new friend.

"My" should be capitalized.

>she looked at me suspiciously.

"she" should be capitalized. With this and various other errors, I have to conclude that you might not know about the dialogue attribution rules. Because of that, I'll have to ask you to look at Ezn's guide and read up under the section: Dialogue. It explains the differences between punctuation for action tags versus dialogue tags and other miscellaneous things. In fact, I'd recommend reading the entire thing because it explains a lot more indepth about writing than I ever could. Here is the link below. Take a look whenever you have time.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xemG7BLk2rvAmQCREIaj5wX2ubvmVt7WziEvh7xXV9g/edit

>After dinner was over, Aero and I listened to the radio for a little while in my room. Then mom walked in and watched us for a minute, smiling at our silly dancing.

I had no idea they were dancing. You might want to mention that because the reaction to the dancing happens, because it makes no sense otherwise.

>“Hey Aero, I think you need to start heading home, don’t you think your parents are worried about you?”

Comma splice. Change the second comma after "home" into a period, then capitalize the next word.

"Hey Aero, I think you need to start heading home. Don’t you think your parents are worried about you?”

>he looked at me, then frowned.

He looked at me, then frowned.

>Tears started to well up in his eyes.

Tears welled up in his eyes.

>tears started running down his cheeks

Okay, you said that already.

>He was a foal, who lived on his streets.

So you don't think a scene where Rainbow is talking to him about where he came from is that important huh? Apparently Rainbow magically knows all about his situation even though the reader doesn't before this moment.

> she looked at him quizzically.

She looked at him quizzically.

>He broke down sobbing on my bed.

So melodramatic. You mentioned him sobbing already many many times.

>He started saying gibberish into my mother’s breast.

You know what? Please go through your story and kill all mentions of "started to" or "began to." It seems like extremely annoying passive voice. I'm not sure what the actual term is, but the characters are doing an action, they're not "starting to" unless they continue doing it until you specifically say that they stopped.

Oh and something probably unrelated, but I believe a pony's breasts are located downwards, so he would have to bend down in order to reach it. That or he was just really short. Stupid pony anatomy, how does it work?

>My mother quieted him

How? Another opportunity to show.

>He was crying hard,

period, not comma.

>“I know, honey, but we’ve got our hands full with our own daughter as it is. We can’t just take him in…”

I know it's an expression, but it should be "hoofs full." Also, kill that last ellipsis. When you overuse ellipses, the impact for when you actually need one is lessened, so please don't overuse them.

>Valiantwing sighed, “he can stay here, until we put him up for adoption. He will continue to live with us until a good family comes along to take him.”

In this case, sighed is not a speaking verb, so the comma following "sighed" should be a period. Unless you're saying that he sighed the entire sentence. So replace that comma with a period and capitalize the next word. "He"

>I got really excited, and looked up at Aero, who was still sobbing on the bed.

Show me how she was excited.

>Are we clear young man?”

comma between "clear" and "young man" because it's a direct address.

Final Notes:

I didn't mark down all of the excessive commas before "ands" because there were simply too many. Look at the links I posted in the earlier reviews and they will explain when the commas should be used. I hope I provided enough examples but at this point, it's taking too long to track all of them down. After reading your chapter two, I realize that the same errors from chapter one are also in here. Most likely, those same errors will be present in every chapters onwards. Let's recap on those.

Showing vs telling
Comma issues
Too many started to actions
Glossing over important details (has to do with telling)
Clunky narrative, occasionally listing unimportant actions
Excessive repetitiveness
Dialogue attribution errors

I didn't notice the dialogue attributions errors that much since there was only a few lines of dialogue in the first chapter (except for that one mistake) but after seeing this chapter, it's much more clear. The good news is that for the chapters I've seen, you've removed the stuff that the pre-reader pointed out. There's no apparent memes (while funny in life, they're terrible in fiction) and no parenthesis (same deal, good in life but not in fiction) so that's good.

You have a bit of an issue with pacing. For that, I have this handy-dandy video for you.

http://www.penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/episode-07-pacing

It's quite interesting and may help give you some insight as to how to improve your story. When the pre-reader mentioned that your pacing was dragging, that was because of what I mentioned earlier, that is, the glossing over of important details while mentioning the unimportant ones. I'd recommend that after watching that video and reading Ezn's guide (as well as the omnibus, which is located in the sticky), that you also find an editor to help you with finding the punctuation mistakes. It's not easy learning to improve, but at the end, I'd say it's worth it. Your story has potential, if you clean up your execution. In the end, that's all that matters, yes?

So clean up your story a bit, check for the same errors that I pointed out in the first two chapters and apply them to the rest of your story, and resubmit. That way, someone will be better off to help you. Let me know if you need more help regarding the showing/telling issue as that tends to throw a lot of people off. That's another of your big issues besides the dialogue attribution errors in your story.
>> No. 116305
>>116291
As promised, I began my review of your story yesterday, and got through the first two chapters. I'll do the third today and have a review post up tonight.
>> No. 116306
>>115702
Ahg. Complications, complications.
If everything goes as planned, I should be able to get your review to you within twenty-four hours. If not, RL has gotten in the way.

My apologies if this has caused any inconveniences.
>> No. 116310
>>116243
Thanks for the review and for giving this story the refinement it needs. I've made the changes and corrections you talked about. Aside from the "raspberry duel" which I'm deciding to leave in. It just seems like this is the kind of fight that would devolve between Pinkie and Rarity.

Your input was invaluable, thanks again for taking the time to read and review.
>> No. 116311
Wow, there's only 5 unclaimed stories in the Training Grounds queue. What manner of sorcery is this? o.O
>> No. 116316
>>116311
Good sir! As my phone objects to IRC as a concept, I must ask you here: would you be willing to apply your detailed reviewing style to a 36k-word beast?

If so I shall post it as soon as possible. If not I completely understand, and shall go harass Minjask.

My apologies for this unorthodox request format; as I implied my phone's machine spirit is not cooperating.
>> No. 116317
>>116316

Sure, I'll give it a shot. I'm a mite slow though. Definitely not as fast as Minjask at reviewing. <3
>> No. 116320
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116320
>>116311
I don't intend to take even half of the credit for that, but I think between the recent newcomers picking up a story, and the old regulars being slightly more active, not to mention my quest to erradicate the queue, The Training Grounds is for the first time in a while, running exactly as it was intended at it's inception.
>> No. 116323
File 134508385548.jpg - (33.62KB , 400x405 , the-dark-knight-rises-box-office-bane-tom-hardy.jpg )
116323
ATTN: Dublio

Title: Ponystar Celestia

Author: InsufferableUnicorn (my FiMFiction handle)

Tags: Adventure, Crossover (of sorts), Dark, Sad, Shipping

Synopsis:
>Years after the wedding of Princess Cadance and Shining Armor, Equestria has expanded its borders. This expansion has led to the creation of massive airships known as "ponystars," which protect settlers and civilian caravans.

>This is the story of one such ponystar, as she and her crew face an attack from a mysterious foe that threatens the very survival of ponykind.

>Can these ponies and their friendships survive when the enemy could be anypony?

Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/38220/Ponystar-Celestia

Notes:Firstly, thank you in advance for your time and efforts.

Some of this fic has already been looked at by a pre-reader* and by Applejinx. The fic is currently in the queues of MintyRest and Ukai. If memory serves, that's everypony I've thrown this at to-date.

Please review as much of it as you can bear. I wonder which will burn out first: your monitor or your mind?

Also, if you refer to enemy agents by name in the review, please spoiler-tag them. I'm probably just waxing narcissistic, but I'd hate for a prospective reader to have plot points spoiled.

*While the first four chapters have been seen by a pre-reader, I would prefer not to color your reading. If you insist, though, I shall provide their comments.
>> No. 116324
>>116305
Sweet! I'm looking forward to further feelings of inadequacy.
>> No. 116325
>>116323

Claiming this story. I'll do my best to help. <3
>> No. 116327
>>114856
>>114751

Chapter 1:
>officially-recognised
You generally don't have to hyphenate compound modifiers with an -ly adverb in front since its function is obvious.

>(and let’s be honest here, best flyer period)
It's very rare that parentheses are a good idea. Use em dashes here. I'm only marking this one instance, but I see there are others.

>"fans",
It appears you employ British usage. If so, this is fine. If not, punctuation goes inside the quotes.

>This lead
It's essentially dialogue, so rules get relaxed, but be aware that this/that/these/those make weak pronouns. They have vague antecedents that refer to the narration itself, so tend to be disengaging. "led"

You're using the word "try" or one of its variants quite a lot up front. Go for some variety.

>It couldn’t get through all of the faces pressed against the glass, eyes gleaming as they followed me around the room, faces screwed up into happy, creepy grins when I had to go close enough to check the glass for damage.
The "eyes gleaming" and "faces screwed up" phrases are absolutes. You've got two of them stacked up, which is a bad idea. Limit yourself to one per sentence. You could join these with an "and" to make a compound absolute.

>her subsequent attempt to lock me in my own house and seduce me
That's an awful teaser. I trust you'll elaborate on it at some point?

>supposed to feed a tur-I mean, tortoise.
Use an em dash for an interruption, not a hyphen.

>There was a problem with that idea, though - actually getting out of the house.
Em dash here, not a hyphen. And em dashes should not have any spaces adjoining them.

>'reinforce'
I think this is the case in British usage as well: Since you're using double quotes as your speech punctuation, the only use for single quote marks is for a quote within another quote. Use doubles here. I see multiple instances later on as well.

>Slowly and quietly I made my way the door, and gently pressed my ear against it.
No comma. It's just a compound verb. You'd only use a comma if the first part of the verb got so complex that you need to help the reader straighten it out.

>I span around
spun

>The door flew open, and straight into the faces of some unlucky ponies.
no comma

>Even as I watched, they started to struggle back to their hooves, a maddened glint appearing in their eyes as they saw me. I could see the ponies behind them starting to press forward.
Repetition of "start." Be especially careful of "begin" and "start." Many authors overuse them horribly.

>Whoosh!
Grey area. First-person narration is effectively dialogue, but it's generally preferred to avoid sound effects in favor of describing the sound.

>they'd been there for every other day this week
Lose the "for."

>I flew onwards in tight spirals, away from my house and skimming the clouds, as objects hurtled towards me.
Note that preceding an "as" with a comma tends to give it the feel of "because," and no comma gives it the feel of "while."

>By this point, I was so used to facing this artillery that I had started sorted these things into three categories in my head.
"By this point" references the narration itself, which is a bad thing. Tense error on "sorted."

>Like the freaking sink that rose out of the cloud in front of me.
This had better not be a reference to that fanfic. It's a joke that gets old quickly (and already has), and in a relatively short period of time, most readers won't even understand it.

>ton of steel
A sink? Ton?

>I took on evasive manoeuvres
The idiom doesn't use "on."

>ANYTHING?!
All caps and most double punctuation are discouraged. Most often, emphasis and proper description preclude the need for all caps.

>NO.
Same deal. And bold type is an even bigger no-no.

Chapter 2:
>It’s funny how being chased by a deity can make somepony put in a little more effort.
Alright, that was funny. You might lose a few readers that don't like to god interpretation of Celestia, but that's a minor effect.

>, and I was sure
no comma

>Doing it any way but straight down took a lot of preparation, after all.
>but I supposed that it did make sense.
It's a fine point, but consider which actions she actually did back when the story happened, and which ones are happening now as she tells the story. "Took" should be "takes," as it's a comment not tied to the specific past event. It's a generalization. Likewise, "supposed" should be "suppose."

>Places that normally take a full day to reach by train, and, maybe at a push, half of that for the fastest fliers out there.
First comma is unnecessary. Lose the "of." The common phrasing is "half that."

>At least, if the trip...
no comma

>wide circle flight
awkward phrasing

>love-struck
one word, no hyphen

>As I expected, there were weather faults all across town; rain clouds where I had scheduled clear skies, clear skies where I wanted some minor cloud cover, and a rainbow that started at Town Hall and then suddenly cut off just over one of the hills.
The semicolon is misused, as what follows it isn't an independent clause. You should use a colon since you're listing examples.

>as they fell for me
More awkward phrasing.

>The truth is,
I've skipped a few of these already, but these little narrative lead-ins that contain a verb (including phrases like "I mean") are best set off with a dash.

>Ulp.
Doesn't work, because it's a present-tense reaction to something in the past, and I don't believe she would be doing it while telling the story.

>no need for evasion, Derpy had trouble flying in a straight line anyway
Use an "as." A dash would work, too, but that's probably how you need to fix the parentheses, so you can't nest them.

>Applejack usually found my napping spots within a few days, and had an awful habit of bucking me out of them when I was in the middle of a great dream.
no comma

>to almost completely hide
split infinitive. In general, try to avoid putting words between "to" and its verb.

>I’d struck a gold mine with this one, since there was enough leaf coverage to almost completely hide me from any nosy ponies, it had already been cleaned of apples by the time I got to it, and it was in one of the furthest groves from the farm itself.
Either the first or second comma is a splice. The bit between themc ould be attached to either one, so it doesn't matter which you pick.

>I shook the waiting blanket off to one side, to get rid of the leaves and bugs that made it their home since I’d last visited.
no comma. "had made," since it's an action completed in the past.

> I then carefully set it back down in the crook of two thick branches to make it as comfy as possible, and just collapsed onto it.
no comma. It's just a compound verb for the subject.

>Every time, it was the same thing, flashing before my eyes; everything about this whole...'problem', coming back up to mock me.
The semicolon doesn't work since it's not followed by an independent clause. There are several schools of though on ellipses:
like... this,
like ... this,
and like . . . this.
The first is preferred.

>It
capitalization derp

>It wasn’t like I didn’t already have a fan club, I could deal with a little more attention.
comma splice

>that I could come up with in my head
Where else would it happen?

>to just make
split infinitive

>me and my friends have been having began
Rephrase that bit. It takes a few passes to figure out what you're saying. Here's another instance where I can forgive a grammatical error in speech because it's believable for the character. It should be "my friends and I," but I don't believe Dash would talk that way.

>something…or someone…
Ellipsis spacing again. You get it right sometimes, so I don't know why you're being inconsistent.

>wanted me to be some kind of relationship
I believe you're missing an "in."

Chapter 3:
>and considered it for a moment before shaking my head
You never mention what "it" is.

>Don't get me wrong, I could probably escape her again
Comma splice. It'd work better as a dash.

>(She might have been pretty tough, but my wings were freaking powerhouses)
I object to the parentheses anyway, but there's no reason for "She" to be capitalized.

>, her brother would be a different matter.
That comma is a splice.

>love-struck
lovestruck

>I couldn't go back house
Read that. Then fix it.

>with a sigh I moved to the side
Introductory phrases leading into the subject need a comma.

>trudging through the dense undergrowth and trees that grew on the edge of the path, knowing that it would be thick enough to keep me hidden.
Stacked up two participial phrases.

>there just aren't that many ponies as amazing as me walking around.
Another grammatical that's probably acceptable for Dash. Technically, "as amazing as I."

>Obviously I wasn’t scared or anything.
Intro word/phrase needs a comma again.

>I don’t care what anypony has to say, I definitely didn’t jump backwards out of fright.
Comma splice

>had manage
managed

>formerly-booby-trapped
Lose the first hyphen.

>‘Course
Apostrophe is unnecessary. You've got a missing word, not missing letters.

>Within 10 minutes I was no longer Rainbow Dash.
Comma after intro phrase, and spell out numbers that are that short.

>dark green
hyphenate

>The second half of that plan became particularly difficult to do
You don't normally "do" a plan. Choose a better verb.

>to actually talk
split infinitive

>pale blue
hyphenate

>She scrutinised my dyed coat, and gently flicked my coloured mane with a hoof.
No comma

>“Why, how positively absurd you look!” She declared with a small giggle.
Capitalization error

>Oh, how could I possibly let such a dear friend present themselves in public in such a state!
Number disagreement. friend (singular) -> themselves (plural). Use "herself," since you can't even play the gender neutrality card here.

>pale blue
hyphenate

>Don't get me wrong,
I've marked this as a verb lead-in that would do better with a dash than a comma, but you're really overusing this phrase. "I mean" is also wearing out its welcome.

>friend-come-kidnapper
British-ism? The phrasing I'd use is friend-turned-kidnapper.

>span around
spun

>“Come now, dearie!” She cajoled.
Capitalization

>This went on for quite a while
Vague "this" again

>Usually, any pegasus unleashing her full wingpower indoors was a terrible idea.
I haven't harped on possessive use with gerunds because it's been Dash talking, and I doubt she'd get it right. But this one has to be fixed. Technically, "pegasus" should be "pegasus's," but it'd be better to rephrase. "Usually, it'd be a terrible idea for a pegasus to unleash her full wingpower indoors."

>Not just because of the updraft that would scatter a few loose papers; when somepony's going flat out, it’s pretty hard to stop for little things like walls and other ponies.
Speaking as someone who does aerodynamics for a living, "updraft" is completely the wrong thing to say here. She's indoors, so there's nowhere "up" for the "updraft" to go. It'd also mean she was trying to fly into the ground. You could just use a generic term like "wind," or if you want to be a bit more technical, "downwash." The semicolon is misued; what precedes it is not an independent clause.

>Times this by about a billion
Maybe Dash says it that way and maybe not, but it's just grating on me. Please use "multiply."

>It was lucky for me that the chef was standing right on the other side, otherwise my face would've had an unscheduled appointment with the oven door.
Comma splice

>I also noticed that he’d been holding a plate with a sandwich on it when I collided with him, and he was still cupping one foreleg around its plate.
That last bit—"around its plate"—is repetitive and oddly phrased.

>to shakily walk
split infinitive

>Evidently some of the ponies had decided to team up.
Intro word needs a comma.

>The door was suddenly blockaded with a wall of bodies
Unnecessary passive voice. Your subject is receiving the action, not performing it. A more active phrasing would be: "A wall of bodies suddenly blockaded the door."

Overall Impressions
Mechanics:

Just be aware that I glossed over a few of the more formal points of grammar because of your first-person narration. It's essentially dialogue, so rules get relaxed. I don't feel Dash would know those rules, so I'm not troubled when she breaks them. Several types of errors are things I trust you can find yourself, so i marked only one or two instances. Fix your hyphen/dash problems, ellipsis spacing, single quote usage, and some comma abuse. And please, please, please stop using those parentheses. Based on your PR response, these things are what EqD wants to see fixed.

Style:
That brings me to another issue. Your narrator is Dash, but doesn't always sound like her. She's not someone to be wordy or use fancy language, so your narrator shouldn't either. When he does, there's a disconnect that distances the reader. It's a guideline I recommend even for a third-person narrator. Tune your narrator to the character under focus. The first chapter focuses mostly on action, which is fine. Just make sure the narrative style fits. Action scenes work best when the narration largely moves at a quick pace. Short sentences, simple syntax. Try to include a few more detailed actions, like body language and facial expression, which is admittedly more difficult to do in first-person. It'll keep your reader more engaged and get him to identify with your character more. The PR comments mentioned switches to second person. What I saw kind of falls into a gray area. If you want to be absolutely sure to deal with that, you can do a search through your fic of "you" and rephrase instances that are not quotations. These are the spots where Dash is speaking to the reader directly.

Character:
You got Dash's voice down pretty well. No complaints here. Though she seems a bit dismissive and even hostile toward everyone else. I get that she's fed up, but she is the Element of Loyalty. I'm surprised she's not doing more to figure out why all this is happening.

Plot:
The first chapter ends pretty well on a suspenseful note, but the second is a dud. The best ways to end a chapter are on a cliffhanger, making the reader eager to see how it's resolved, or by tying up a plot point, giving the reader a sense of completion and signaling that he gets to start something new in the next chapter. This one just kind of fizzles out. Same with the third. The jokes are mostly landing. But we're getting a lot of the same stuff over again. It's not helping that your chapters don't cut off at good stopping points. That makes it feel like Rainbow's predicament is being rehashed twice. Aside from a change of setting, it's just more ponies reacting to Dash the same way. You could combine all these into a single chapter, and it might actually help, since the plot wouldn't be expected to vary as much then. We're getting a feel for the basics of Dash's problem and how she deals with it, but absolutely no progress toward resolving it. For a cohesive story you need to introduce a conflict, build it up, and resolve it. I don't see any of steps two and three yet, and there's only so long you can stall the reader before he gives up.

You writing is good, and you've pulled off the humor, which not every writer can say. Now make it clear that it's all working toward something. Keep writing, and have fun with it.
>> No. 116330
File 134508706542.png - (370.05KB , 486x570 , goodjob.png )
116330
>>116320
>>116325
Patchouli approves. <3
>> No. 116336
>>116325
Thank you again. I will try to give back by reviewing a fic once I return from Everfree Northwest.

It will be my first review. The poor soul.
>> No. 116367
[Tags] HiE, Grimdark

[Synopsis] Twilight knew Spike would start to grow up one day, but that doesn't make it any easier when it happens. She's sure Pinkie's right: he just needs some space, and he'll be just fine by himself while she spends some time with Celestia.

But the Princess has her own reasons for calling Twilight back to Canterlot. Villainy is afoot: two travelers in the Everfree have woken dark forces beneath the Earth, forces of fire and steel.

Link: https://docs.google.com/folder/d/0B4GwtWrskMSEZXlJbUlzeGxpY1E/edit

Chapters: 5, 6, 7

Words: 33853

~~~~~~~~~

Like it says, just looking for chapters 5-7 to be reviewed so I don't kill anyone here. Obviously would be best to at least skim the previous chapters, or at least ask and I can give you the gist of the thing.

Otherwise have at it. Plot is my primary concern, but I'm definitely trying to improve my style, so feel no need to remain silent if something bugs you.

Also open to story-wide issued, but understand I can only do so much. Although, per my last reviewer's request, I went back and rewrote a scene in the first chapter where Spike and Twilight argued. The reviewer thought Spike had been unrealistically "douchy," and while this scene was a pretty big impetus for the story at large, I acquiesced and toned the scene down. So don't be afraid, I'm one of those writers who listens :-)
>> No. 116383
>>116367
Shit, you got everything already fanimage'd? Can't see it anywhere on fimfic or EqD. Did you do those yourself or have a friend who does them?
>> No. 116385
>>116383
Oh, the chapter art? I did those.

Most of them borrow elements I took from other images and edited in Photoshop. The character art of my human OC's was done by commissioning Kloudmutt, and I just cut those out and edited them into the image. The only one that's 100% my work is chapter 1 and chapter 6's art.

...Well, technically chapter 3 as well, but it still has a cutout silhouette of Twilight that wasn't mine.

Also, what didn't you see on EQD or FimFiction? Only four of my chapters are officially up, but in FimFiction the chapter art is at the top of each page the same as in the GoogleDoc ones. The EQD post doesn't host the chapter images, but it does use the Chapter 1 art for the post itself.

http://www.fimfiction.net/story/23282/Black-Equinox
http://www.equestriadaily.com/2011/08/story-black-equinox.html
>> No. 116386
File 134511495028.jpg - (57.38KB , 693x960 , 149730_408956145803658_100000678274898_1291656_1191550359_n.jpg )
116386
>>116336
I and hopefully some other more experienced reviewers will be watching, ready to help
>> No. 116393
Good morning.

I would like to request that all three chapters of my fic 'The League' be reviewed.

Title: The League
Author: Za Raapini
Tags: Comedy, Slice-of-life
Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/34509/The-League
Synopsis: Ponies playing basketball? In a professional league? On Draft Day Slam Dunk sees his dreams being crushed right in front of him, and he ends up saddled on the laughingstock of the league- The Los Andaluses Kickers. Gritting his teeth against a perceived injustice, he will try to do everything he can to show Equestria he doesn't belong on a team that dwells in the basement year after year.
Chapters: All three (8403 words total)
>> No. 116394
File 134511758657.png - (116.16KB , 610x542 , 4628_quizzical_scootaloo_by_moongazeponies-d3e5zo6_png-610x0.png )
116394
Well there’s nothing wrong with indenting, but I must say that after so many stories without indentation, I was surprised to see it.

And very early on you present us with a question: What is this strange creature that only pip can see, that lurks in his bathroom? Very nice.

Ah, it seems to have just been his imagination, and here I thought I was reading something creepy. Oh well, it makes a good emotional connection.

Wow, so far this is more of a sad story than dark, but still, it’s pretty good. I don’t think I’ve read a story about Pip before.

Well I don’t know If I would label it dark, but it was a good story.

The premise and the storyline were very enjoyable. You do a great job of emotionally attaching the reader to the character, and of showing Moondrop’s emotional and physiological state. The few grammar mistakes I found were pointed out in Doc.

The only qualm I have with this story is that it puts a toe just over the line. I had to recheck the rules section, and description, allusion, or depiction of sexual acts in dialogue, text, or images is not allowed on Ponychan, so I’m sorry to say you won’t be able to post this anywhere else on the site unless that gets fixed. You might also want to watch out for torture/abuse for that same scene. http://www.ponychan.net/chan/?p=rules

Other than that I enjoyed this quite a bit, good luck to you with completing this story.
>> No. 116395
File 134511780144.jpg - (8.07KB , 225x225 , scootaloo grinning.jpg )
116395
>>1114313
You're the last one that's been sitting for over a week, let's get this done. Ooh, and it's a 20,000 word dark epic. This should be fun, although I might be a few days.
>> No. 116398
I thought of something while browsing through a story.

Usually a character would use "Celestia" as an expression of shock. e.g: "Oh Celestia... she lives in a freakin' tree!"

I'm wondering what that would become if the character happens to be Celestia herself. I know there are other ways to get the emotion across, but what if I want to do it using dialogue?
>> No. 116399
File 134512036378.jpg - (15.91KB , 348x232 , backpain-1292835351.jpg )
116399
>>116395

Thanks! Hopefully it'll be a satisfying read.
>> No. 116401
File 134512148316.png - (1.02MB , 900x780 , 132783428177.png )
116401
>>116398
'Celestia' is rather interchangeable in the pony vernacular with 'god', it seems. For obvious reasons. Immortal, benevolent, omnipotent (she moves the sun, or tethers the earth around the sun, depending on your scientific viewpoint), and likely omnipresent, at least to some small degree.

you raise an interesting question about it, though. Luna, I could easily imagine professing her shock or adulation to the stars, the heavens, or some other celestial body. "Oh my stars!" or something to that degree. Celestia, not as easily, but simply because it just isn't within her character to do so, in my opinion. Celestia has always struck me as a very serious (about her work and her play) and grounded personality, while Luna is much more extravagant and boisterous.

got a few other ideas in that regard, as well. it's possible that there is some kind of higher power beyond the alicorns, that they pay homage to. some kind of multidimensional governing body, or some such. or it could be a simple affirmation to their parents, the previous god-figures of the world, I would assume. Maybe they swear to each other - Luna to Celestia, and Celestia to Luna. given how cheeky she can be sometimes, Celestia might even just swear to herself anyway XD

'sage' because not sure if off-topic. still interesting through.
>> No. 116402
File 134512148533.jpg - (9.05KB , 200x200 , reading.jpg )
116402
>>116398
"By Tartarus" or somesuch, I guess. Though if it's Celestia doing the exclaiming, you have her calm, cool and collected characterization working against the possibility of her using such language. Or you could lampshade it - "Oh me" - like Terry Prachett did with a certain god of hangovers, though he's Terry Prachett so he's a unique case.
>> No. 116403
File 134512169507.jpg - (226.39KB , 1024x1024 , 1336705187441.jpg )
116403
>>116401
Rarity, has also used that same expression, in episode one.

"Oh my stars, darling! Whatever happened to your coiffure?"
>> No. 116406
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116406
>>116401
While I see Celestia as too controlled to exclaim that way, in my mind the superior power she acknowledges would be her mother who totally isn't Lauren Faust's ponysona.

But then, I'm a weirdo and like to think of the Princess' father as an eldritch entity known only as "the M'Kraken."
>> No. 116407
>>116394
Thanks for the review, I'll amend those pesky grammar errors.
As for the 'sexual content' I'm not sure. It shows the scene which we can only gather is 'after sex' and we are only aware of this due to context from earlier. At no point is a sexual act even described or even implied, it merely shows us the aftermath.
I was aware of the abuse thingy and I tried to keep it to a minimal. It shan't feature anywhere else although may be implied.

However, I must thank you again for a great review. It's nice to know what worked and what needs work.
>> No. 116417
Seems no one is claiming it...plus, the fact that it's rather short only makes it sweeter.
>> No. 116424
File 134513708640.png - (65.48KB , 180x262 , 133956615642.png )
116424
>>116407
"Implied" means that you are aware of something without it being openly stated. What you have is pretty much a textbook definition of implied sex.

im·plied   [im-plahyd] Show IPA
adjective
involved, indicated, or suggested without being directly or explicitly stated; tacitly understood: an implied rebuke; an implied compliment.~ http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/implied?s=t

The information from earlier is enough; you could almost cut the scene in question entirely if not for the need to introduce that new character.
>> No. 116426
>>116417
Oh, I forgot to mention, this is my first time writing about canon characters. So please help me make sure that everypony acts the way that they should.
>> No. 116437
Redirecting to my review thread
>>116435

Sage because I love derping and I just can't stop.
>> No. 116438
>>116434
Well, Fluttershy was trying to calm down. I'll make it clearer.

Thanks for your review.
>> No. 116440
>>116323

Oh, a small warning before I start. I'm not familiar with the crossover material, so any jokes involving that will probably fly over my head. A good crossover for MLP needs to be able to function without too much of an infodump, but that's why crossovers are hard to do in the first place.

I'm not going to line by line the entire fic, because I will probably insane and start killing people. So I'll just read along, note the errors, and post some examples. If you have recurring errors, I'll stop mentioning them after the umpteeth time. Most people tend to make the same ones rather than different ones, but I'll try my best.

Unless your story doesn't really interest me enough to keep going. Sorry about that, as sci-fi isn't really my cup of tea.
>> No. 116442
>>116440
>Oh, a small warning before I start. I'm not familiar with the crossover material, so any jokes involving that will probably fly over my head.
Knowledge of BSG might enhance some bits, but I have tried to make knowledge of it totally unncessary. To that end I've tried to eliminate such in-jokes.

>A good crossover for MLP needs to be able to function without too much of an infodump, but that's why crossovers are hard to do in the first place.
There are infodumps I'm afraid, but they trail off around Act 3 of "The End." Pretentious, I know. The dumps mostly have to do with changes between the Season 2 finale and the time of my work.

>I'm not going to line by line the entire fic, because I will probably insane and start killing people.
Unfortunate but completely understandable.

>(Spoiler Box)
I hope you are pleasantly surprised by how little sci is in this fi.
>> No. 116484
I deeply regret this, but due to circumstances beyond my control, I cannot finish my review.

I'm very sorry Equ-us. I hope your next reviewer is able to give your story the attention it needs.
>> No. 116490
>>114441
Review can be found here:
http://mobile.fimfiction.net/blog/57713
>> No. 116491
File 134517415339.png - (310.26KB , 1024x462 , she_brings_the_night_by_allthelostsouls-d47db5w.png )
116491
>>115656
Review incoming, categorized for your convenience. Please keep all arms and legs at your sides during the entirety of the review. Hold all your indignant rage until the post is over. Head shaking is allowed. Fist shaking is not. See the second sentence.

Plot

The premise is a nice one. The idea of having Big Bad, chaotic Discord attached to Little Bad, arrogant Trixie promises great things. Unfortunately, your hook drops the reader back into the water before the story really sinks in. The hook promises great things with Trixie’s discovery of her hitchhiker. I rubbed my hands together at their inevitable confrontation. How would Trixie handle it? Would she team up with Discord, try to fight him, come to some sort of compromise? An unlikely duo would form some way or another and would only made more deliciously complicated by Twilight’s Band of Pursuers.

However, skimming ahead, I saw that Trixie doesn’t discover that Discord is inside her until chapter five. Now, building up to that highly anticipated scene is all well and good, but you need something else to hook along the way, something else to hold the reader's interest, a satisfying side dish until the main course. Instead, I got a Trixie vs. nature showdown, not a shabby sideshow, to be sure, except that the showdown didn’t go anywhere. It built Trixie’s rep for her trip to Manehattan but this became a dead end. She just ended up getting hospitalized, again, and then all that effort was shoved out of the way by Discord forcing her to work with him.

It simply feels like the story is dragged on until around chapter six. Now keep in mind, I only skimmed the chapters past numero dos, so if there’s something vital I missed, then feel free to beat me over the head with the Bludgeon of Authorial Anger.

(Disclaimer: This review is highly subjective, of course, and there’s nothing more subjectiver in this subjective review than the plot, so take everything I just said here with a salt shaker.)

Characterization

I’ll just go right out and say that Trixie didn’t really engage me. Trixie, from what we’ve seen of her in the show, is a very grandiose figure. She should be leaping out of the page at me. She wasn’t. I eagerly awaited the scenes where Discord returned because he was amusing, engaging, and commanded the scene. As a reader, I shouldn’t want to gloss over one of your primary protagonists for another character. One of the big issues causing this eye glazing was that you’ve made Trixie an emotional basket case. A fast] basket, at that. One moment she’s giddy at the prospect of performing in front of the Canterlot elite and the Princess herself, as if her charming smile would win them over all by itself, and then she’s wiping sweat off her brow after pacing nervously backstage. At one point she’s studiously looking over her script while living the apex of her popularity in Canterlot and then she’s jumping to conclusions about Twilight and her friends’ intentions, becoming almost instantly infuriated. I think you’re more than capable of writing a good Trixie, it’s just a matter of fleshing her character out more. You obviously understand your Trixie, now just let your reader in on her.

Twilight & Co., seemed quite in character. Your Pinkie really worked at times and really fell flat at others. I’d keep a watchful eye on her. She’s a tricky character to work with.

This brings us to Discord. Allow me to repeat myself: “he was amusing, engaging, and commanded the scene.” You really did an excellent job of combining his antagonistic nature with his gleeful energy. He has zeal and the page can’t contain him (in a good, non-dangerous way). His parts were the ones I looked forward to the most. Now, if later on in the story, I’m supposed start rooting against him, this is going to be difficult without some other character to attach my affections to.

Narration and Prose

Time for another moment of truth. Your prose is lacking energy. A lot of this will be fixed by getting better with showing instead of telling (something that I think I’ve addressed pretty well in my Gdoc comments), however, I don’t think this is the sole major issue. I think you need to give a serious look at your narrative style. I can see that you’re using third-person omniscient, and that’s fine, but you’re not utilizing it to its full extent. The other narrative styles are standing across from the reader, narrowing their focus, and showing them the story through a filter, but the third-person omniscient narrator is sitting next to the reader. There is no limiting scope, the reader is privy to everything that the storyteller is. In this POV, the narrator is the reader’s companion, jumping in and out of characters with fluidity and pointing a finger at different spots of the panorama to guide the reader along, nudge-nudge wink-winking, making frantic gestures, and eating the reader’s popcorn.

What you have in the story right now could very easily be shifted into third-person limited without too much tweaking. Any comments with the word “marker” in them are sections that struck me as being a distinct product of the omniscient POV, where you jumped out and said “Hey, it's the storyteller here! Blah blah blah.” The problem with them, however, is that they felt jarring because you haven’t kept that style consistent. The majority of the first two chapters are spent behind the shoulders of either a single character or a small handful, not in the pulled back view.

Grammar

I am far, far from an expert on this, but to my poorly trained eye, your grammar and spelling seemed quite solid. There shouldn’t be any worries here.

Ending Note

I read over the pre-reader’s response and the previous training ground review and these quotes stuck out to me:

>“as well as "telling" and passive tense that make it boring to read in parts. You also have stylistic issues…”
>“Since this is about Discord, I began reading with high expectations for vivid, playfully-described action. I was disappointed.”

These strike right to the heart of the matter. You need to infuse your story with a strong dose of pizzazz, and from the sound of the previous review, you’ve definitely improved. Now keep the upper portion of the outside of your mouth rigid and listen to King Henry V!

~~~

I would have would have gone more in depth with your later chapters but I feel that you should shore up early chapter problems before I delve further. You never know what might change down the line by changing things in the first few. When that’s done, I’d be more than happy to go through the rest, if you wish.

This has been my first Training Grounds review, so do please tell me how well I did, and feel free to let loose with the questions, requests for clarification, and rebuttals as to why I’m entirely wrong on any number of issues.

Well, I’m off to write and make all the same mistakes I just took the time pointing out. It shall be a blast.
>> No. 116492
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116492
>>116327

Many thanks for the feedback! Couple of things I wanna say in return:

Yeah, I'm English, so I suppose that would explain the bit about the comma being outside the quotes. I didn't even realise that was a nation-specific thing, to be honest. It's just the way I've always seen it done here.

I'm currently throwing around the idea of having a chapter feature each of the mane 6, just so I can go over back stories in this universe of Dash adoration. I will admit that I love teasing, though.

Em dashes were actually in my original version, but for some reason Word stopped changing my hyphens into them when I went back to edit. I didn't really know how to put them in manually until I Googled it just now, so thanks for making me learn how to do that!

I wasn't aware of a fanfic that featured a sink. I literally just threw out the words "[insert funny inanimate object here]", and sink was what my mind responded with.

I was going for a broad measurement of weight with the "ton" thing, rather than literal (in the sense of "man, this thing weighs a ton!"). Maybe it would come across better as "tonne"? I'm not really up-to-date with weights.

The bold and caps thing was my attempt to set apart the words and thoughts respectively - I wanted the idea that they were building up in frustration. I'm currently struggling to think of a better way to write it, though.

I have no idea where the ellipsis inconsistency came from, either. I guess I just couldn't settle on one side or the other for some reason.

"I couldn't go back house"... oh man. I want to punch myself. In fact, I think I will.

Ow.

The whole "and me/and I" thing, I can exclusively confirm, was a sacrifice made to actually sound like Dash. One of the few I actually did somewhat correctly, I'd like to think.

I did consider using "friend-turned-kidnapper", but it just felt to me like it made Dash sound like Rarity was no longer her friend, which is totally not what I wanted. "Friend-come-kidnapper" just felt more suitable, like she was saying Rarity was both at once. I may be completely wrong on that account, but I have seen it used before in similar circumstances, so I felt at least a little validated using it.

As for "updraft", I just used it because it sounded cool, which really was a terrible idea. I bow to your superior knowledge, and will never again do something like this without checking the facts first.

Times vs. multiplication... Alright, I'll concede that to you too. I'm not going to argue over maths. Unless you wanna start one over maths vs. math, that is, in which case i'm game.

I think I can actually work out why I use parentheses so much. A long time ago, I used em dashes to huge excess, and I seem to remember being told I could alternate them with parentheses to the same effect. Evidently, I've chosen to go to the other extreme now without even realising it. Thanks for pointing this out, though; I'll be sure to work on it.

That's pretty much it, really. I'm gonna be reworking some of this, and some of my ideas for later chapters too, in light of what you've said. Thanks very much for helping me with this!
>> No. 116495
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116495
>>116492
>I did consider using "friend-turned-kidnapper", but it just felt to me like it made Dash sound like Rarity was no longer her friend, which is totally not what I wanted. "Friend-come-kidnapper" just felt more suitable, like she was saying Rarity was both at once. I may be completely wrong on that account, but I have seen it used before in similar circumstances, so I felt at least a little validated using it.
[Pokes muzzle in.]

"Come" is rarely used in that context in the United States anymore. A more U.S.-friendly way of phrasing it would probably be "friend-slash-kidnapper". Assuming you want to pander to Yanks, anyway.

[Glances about shiftily, then withdraws.]
>> No. 116499
>>116495

I still hear it pretty regularly. Maybe it's a regional thing? I live in Minnesota, sometimes we end up a decade or three behind the linguistic times.

Also, I've only ever seen it spelled "cum" (e.g. "author-cum-reviewer"). From Latin, presumably, though I don't claim to know anything other than what I see and hear.
>> No. 116504
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116504
There are just a few things that bear immediate mention:

First, you have a strange habit of putting commas between adjectives that aren’t coordinate. Some examples:
> clean, hardwood
> simple, porcelain
> stuffy, Canterlot
Do the following experiment: for each of these pairs of adjectives, replace the comma with “and” and try reversing their order. Does the sentence still make sense? No. Here’s why: they’re hierarchical adjectives (also, the latter in each case is not even an adjective in the strict sense, but the genitive case of another noun that modifies the subject). Thus, the commas are awkward and undue; simply clean hardwood floor is correct. This issue I noticed a few times in chapter 2, but can’t remember seeing it enough times in chapter 1 for it to make me think, “hey wait a minute, this is a bit annoying” and then find out what the deal was in grammar.

Secondly, you have some informal speech in the narrative. You also, noticeably often, use this roundabout method of making a statement that encumbers the pace of narration: (although|unless|while) something, something else. It’s not terrible per se but it introduces more of what seems like fluff by taking the time and words to explain why a character is doing one thing and not the other. If you’re using it to specifically develop character, then it would be easier to see as useful.

For the most part, your sentences aren’t bad enough to warrant concern, though some of them seem just a tad bit unwieldy. As for the story’s style and content, I am at a loss of words for what to suggest, except to focus more on what’s actually happening in it. I understand you probably want to put into words this world and the goings-about, but I think you need to shift the balance, because it seems you’re trying too hard to create immersion for the reader and it ends up all pine. Ponderous-a, that is.

Here’s what happens in the first chapter:
- There’s a train on the way to Sauvigneigh
- Character “Pocket Watch” does his duty to wake the passengers on the train
- He wakes Miss Blossoms and finds her attractive
- Miss Blossoms reveals she’s from Manehattan, travelling light and going to Marelot after getting off at Sauvigneigh, for “family business”
- Pocket Watch leaves the narration
- Blossoms meets “Brass Badge,” law enforcement official in Marelot, who says many are leaving Marelot; hard times are had there
- Blossoms disembarks and whistles, very loudly, for a cab
- She goes to a coffee place/bakery and orders food
- She listens to gossip about the town of Marelot until interrupted by waitstaff
- A character named “Snicker Doodle” sees how tired she is from time lag and sits down to chat with her
- Snicker Doodle asks a favor of her - to deliver a message to the parents in Marelot (bakers by trade) who stayed despite hardships

Not a bad story per se, but those few things took up nearly six and a half thousand words, and not all of them were significant; it seems like the story could be better told in fewer words. A lot of the writing it is just setting up pony-world analogues that emulate real places and entities so obviously that it’s just superfluous. The worst example of this is “Moonbucks”. You spend one big long paragraph describing the Equestrian Starbucks, and even include an annoying little disclaimer that is even less necessary than the paragraph it lives in. What compounds it (or rather, makes it troublesome in the first place) is that because there’s no mention of it anywhere else in the chapter, it would seem it has no significance, and is thus fluff.

I’m not saying throw what you have in terms of exposition out the window. I’m just saying you need to throw your readers a bone by giving them more details that tie in to the conflict. If you’re just putting things in to set the scene and describe a day or two in the life of Miss Blossom as she goes Marelot (to do what, exactly, I do not know; “settling a legal dispute”? What kind of legal dispute?) then you’re diluting the actual story and the end result will be that important details (and the will to care about the story) get lost among all the lesser details. Having gone through what seems like too many details of the world that aren’t relevant to the plot itself, it was harder to discern important details that are necessary to understand the plot, because I wasn’t sure whether I was reading some important character development or just a “hello-goodbye” encounter like the one with Pocket Watch (for example).

Your second chapter isn’t as bad as the first in that regard, unless the characters you introduced are never going to be seen again after Blossoms leaves the establishment she’s currently sleeping in (and having nightmares in). It’s becoming easier to discern important plot points, but that’s only because plot points are finally being introduced — the full extent of Marelot’s predicament, for instance. I would say focus on the plot, use exposition for mood-setting that is appropriate for the part of the story you’re in, and keep on writing.
>> No. 116514
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116514
Title : Pride of Magic, Earth and Sky
Author : Shader
Tags : Dark, Adventure
Word Count : 16,293 words
Synopsis :
After centuries of hatred, and ten long years of bloodshed, pony-kind has finally found peace.

Banding together to form the nation of Equestria, the three tribes work together to create a new age of prosperity for all. Laws, order, freedom and harmony. A happy ending for everypony.

Boring, isn't it?

But perhaps the still smoldering embers of war can be reignited. All one would need is a single pinch of Chaos.

Link : https://docs.google.com/document/d/16CvXpCkPtSnxd8OJsvv3HEif_uUwrMjAUmUXTYCW5Ro/edit
Comments : Names of character's aren't finalised (I'm not terribly good at making names). Synopsis is still a work in progress.
>> No. 116515
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116515
>>116499
>>116495
You both have excellent points. I would change it to "cum", but seeing how 'Mericans have trouble with "titbit", I'm guessing that a word that apparently has sexual connotations would be too much. "Slash" it is.
>> No. 116516
>>116491
Thank you very much for taking up your precious time to review this. It is very much appreciated.

Now it's time for me to be blunt. I don't think this story has what it takes to reach the heights that I'm aiming for. You're the third reviewer on this board that has pointed out that the premise started out strong but didn't build up to anything significant in the short term. My prose is flat and all over the place narratively, I have severe issues with telling vs showing and my face is ugly. Okay, I take back that last part, but the rest is true. I don't think anything less than a complete rewrite is going to be able to solve the problems that this story has. In hindsight, I should have come here after my first rejection and submitted each new chapter instead of bulldozing ahead and finishing the fic. It's only in recent months that I've learned the godsend of pre-readers.

At least my grammar is gooder. I have that at least.

It's nice to hear that for the most part, I'm capable of writing the characters in-character. Of all the compliments that I've received, that's the one that pleases me the most.

Where I'm going with this is that I'm ready to move beyond Thunderdome Trixcord. I'm frustrated with working with it and want to start other projects that I've been putting off.

That's not to say I haven't learned a great deal! My subsequent stories have seen a marked improvement and I'm more aware during the writing process of what works and what doesn't. Trixcord will always be that reminder of what not to do, kinda how artists keep their earlier works nearby so that they can see the pitfalls before falling into them.

Since you took the time to give me such a in-depth review, let me give you one. You could have fooled me when you said this is your first Training Grounds review. You have a keen eye for spotting the boring prose and the clumsy narration. You found several places where the show vs tell needed to be reworded. Your insight on the plot is spot-on. All this while giving a healthy dose of humor and goodwill in your comments that kept a relaxed atmosphere even as you were tearing my stuff apart. You weren't derogatory when pointing out a flaw, patient when explaining that something didn't work and very encouraging that things will get better. That last part is really important because some of the other reviews I've gotten have made me want to hang up my keyboard for good. I hope this encourages you to continue helping others here that come asking for it.

Please don't feel as though your review was done in vain. I've saved what you said so that I may refer to it whenever I need to. Perhaps, somewhere down the line, I may pick this story up again and try to salvage what I can. Right now, I just can't look at it without shaking my head. I need to get away from it and take what I've learned to get some other plot bunnies written out.

Thank you very much Coconutswallow for reviewing my story. I hope the experience was a learning one for you as well.
>> No. 116518
>>116516

I should have mentioned this in my above post. I will be taking your suggestions for the first two chapters and make corrections. I'll post those up so that anyone that stumbles upon this story won't have to plow though the crap that's currently up there. I feel I owe you for the time you put into this and want to implement your changes.

Thanks again!
>> No. 116519
>>116504
to be honest, I was expecting some much harsher critique, so i'm a little relieved.

your very first point on hierarchical adjectives is really going to help. I'd never even heard of such a thing before, and it'll really help clearing up my comma abuse that another reviewer mentioned. I don't quite follow on the informal speech, but it gives me something to look into.
as for my fluff overuse, you make a lot of valid points. old habits. I need to consider what exactly a paragraph is contributing to the story from now on. got a lot of work to do in that regard. I'm glad chapter two doesn't suffer as badly from it.

I'm not sure if you'd be interested in continuing to review and help edit this story into chapter three and beyond. it's hard to judge a person's interest in a story when they're writing a review. but it would be greatly appreciated if you were.

>no idea what picture to post. need more pictures.
>> No. 116522
>>116490

Thank for taking a look at the story! I'll set to work as soon as I can.
>> No. 116525
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116525
>>116519
> I'm not sure if you'd be interested in continuing to review and help edit this story into chapter three and beyond.
I'm not really much of an editor. I'll comment if I see mistakes repeated or technical errors in abundance, but I've burnt out on being an editor/proofreader in the past (not under this posting handle, mind you). Truth be told, the guy who was commenting in the doc (I didn't comment; I read it and took notes, the old fashion way) spotted at least one minor plot hole / loose end that I didn't notice. I'm really only good for picking out the worst issues in a 'fic.

I'll be honest, I had to really compel myself to read as carefully as I did and be able to discern what the story actually was. Maybe it's because I'm tired after work when I actually have time to read and my patience is thinner. Hence, I spent time finding ways to articulate what made that whole process of reading more difficult for me (yet didn't comment on other ways in which it could be improved). I would say then that your best bet is to take my advice for what it's worth and get a wider diversity of opinions from other reviewers as you continue writing and editing. That way you have an abundance of general advice to work with instead of continually requiring labor input from the same people, which is hardly an easy way to get started around here. Eventually, if your writing and story get strong enough, someone will be willing to stick with you and follow as you release new chapters (and if you're extremely lucky and good at writing, you'll end up like SS&E, Seattle_lite et al with several people following and reviewing your story's progress).
>> No. 116530
>>116525
yeah, that's the general idea. leaving all my comments tagged in there until the rewrite at the end of the month. I was in there highlighting things from your initial impressions, as well as from ideas from another reviewer. I'm so far behind on my word count for the writing month at this point it's not even funny, though, so all I can afford at the moment is to comment it and leave it for later. which sucks, because I'd really like to go back and rewrite the first chapter now with the new ideas and a revised outlook.

either way, thanks very much for your input on this. godspeed sir.

to anyone else, I certainly won't be turning down additional commentary, and this is probably where I'm going to bring the story to work on once the writing spam ends at the end of august. gonna try and pick up a couple stories to review in return, at some point, and keep helping out with TTG. it's tough, but it's fun :3
>> No. 116556
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116556
posted 7/27
>>113650
author: Equ-us

this poor thing's been in the queue for nearly three weeks now. it just got dropped by somepony else, and I'd like to pick it up. took a peek at it, and it looks interesting, and it's been awhile since I've seen a good shipping fic I could get behind. at a whopping ~14k words, it might take me a little while, so I hope the author can continue to have patience for us here at TTG. should be able to get it done over the weekend, help to break up my own writing, but I'll have it by next friday at the absolute latest.

have faith, Equ-us.
>> No. 116570
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116570
>>115681
Line-by-line in-doc. Note that I'm not that great of an editor, so I may have missed something.

Chapter two is complete raw arse. It's really bad. And here's why:

A) Flow: Chapter one made logical sense. Every scene lead to the next, and the characters acted logically as possible in a world populated by technicolor ponies. Chapter two starts with a jarring and confusing introduction (and it's never later explained as to whether Kite's mom consented, or what happened) and the scenes seem pasted together like a first-grade art project (he wakes up and cries and then the labor camp leaders arbitrarily decide when he's supposed to work. We're given no frame of reference as to how much time he's spent in there.). Not only that, but we were given no indication that this would happen in the chapter prior. It's like going to see Casablanca and having Optimus Prime appear in the second scene.

B) Tone: Chapter one and chapter two are night and day. In fact, if you switched some of the names around, I would have said the two chapters were from completely different stories. The first chapter is about lower middle-class living and the social pressures of school, and the second is about medical practices being used as a cover for child labor camps.

C) Story integrity: Chapter two nukes the plot integrity. How did the ponies get to Kite? Why doesn't Celestia, who is quite literally a god, know about this? How are they abducting children? Why aren't the children telling? Why aren't the children's parents telling? That's just a few of the questions I have after reading chapter two.

D)Message: After reading chapter one, I was really hoping you'd play up the angle of Kite being ostracized from his school. I was looking forward to emotional depth, family problems and the growing pains of a kid growing up. Instead, I was treated to: A colt accidentally kills a bird with a pencil and gets a strange cutie mark. Suddenly, Kite is imprisoned for no reason at all. Enter insinuation of rape, child labor, and concentration camps.

Not exactly the kind of depth I was hoping for.

Recommendations:
Either nuke chapter two with the fury of a thousand suns or change chapter one to more clearly represent where the story is going. I'll say this: if you go with chapter one over two, there's a lot of potential in this story. Heck, I could think of ten ways to turn it into a decent adventure story without having the stupid and arbitrary labor camps.

Keep writing.
>> No. 116571
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116571
My apologies to you, Cheezsauce. I should have had this done hours ago but I’ve spent most of the day vegetating.

And you’ve got a heap of a mess here.

You have a lot of choppy paragraphs full of unrelated sentences, and a lot of tell. You also need to stop trying to explain everything to the reader. You’re using things phrases like ‘it seemed like’ or ‘for some reason’. Just state what happens, and if you've done it right, the events will explain themselves.

I have to ask, are you native English speaking? The manner in which you confuse tenses correlates to that of Somepony for whom English is their 3rd or 4th language.

You may want to make the pages compact if you’re going to leave GDocs as your hosting site.
View>Document view>Compact

>attracted towards it like iron filings to a magnet
Never heard that one before. Creative.

I’m going to be doing this review in pieces, because it is–-frankly–-exhausting to read. I recommend that as soon as you finish fixing what you can for this chapter, you jump ahead and try to find the same mistakes in the later chapters, so that I might get this done just a little bit sooner.

Also, how many individual chapters are there? I plan to do this one chapter at a time.
>> No. 116576
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116576
>>116571
Crap... didn’t know my story was that bad. Sorry you had to go through that mess. I guess I need to take a step back for a moment and look at everything again.
>> No. 116579
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116579
>>113650
I must have a lot of free time on my hands, or I'm an impossibly fast reader. I think I just have a lot of free time.

In the category of technical merit!
You have two consistently occurring issues. One, you are aware of, and that is the punctuation rules regarding the transition from narration to dialog. So I'll start there. You have a firm grasp of your transitions from dialog to narration, going through [dialog][comma][end quote][narration] in nearly every instance. You demonstrate correct usage of the replacement of the comma in that sequence with question marks and explanation marks, as well as the occasional interobang and hyphen. Your issue, is the transition from narration to dialog. [narration][comma][start quote][dialog] is generally what I see, and what is generally accepted as correct. Very rarely will the transition from narration to dialog be separated with a period, though it can happen on occasion. I stopped counting how many times it happened. It is extremely prevalent. Normally I wouldn't make such a big deal about this, as it is a relatively minor flaw compared to some other works I have read, but you specifically requested details on this subject, so here they are.
Next, I need to explain what I know about Lavender Unicorn Syndrome to you. Your story is rife with it, and it is another type of error I stopped counting after a while. Lavender Unicorn Syndrome is the inexplicable habit of the writer to use descriptors in place of names or applicable pronouns. Some examples of this are:
>the curious unicorn
>the fastidious researcher
>The demure pegasus
>the pegasus
>the pegasus
>the pegasus (it showed up a lot and caused some other technical issues.)
>the baby dragon
>the party crazed pony
I only nail these when I see them used in reference to dialog. People are especially tempted to submit to LUS when writing for canon characters, and it is the worst possible thing to do. Every one of these statements is a redundancy. I know that Fluttershy is demure and quiet. I know that Rarity owns a boutique. I know that Spike is an infant/toddler. I know that Twilight is fastidious. And I could go on and on to that regard. I also want you to know that you're not alone in this problem. If you go read chapter two of my story that just went through the Training Grounds, you'd probably stop counting the Lavender Unicorn sightings, too. I'm just as bad at it, and have been fighting hard to avoid it ever since I was diagnosed.
Moving on to missing words, of all things. These are incredibly difficult to spot yourself, as your mind tends to fill in the blanks when you self-edit. Even reading aloud doesn't solve the problem one-hundred percent. Sometimes stuff just goes missing. But there are quite a few times where you accidentally the whole sentence. Not so many that I stopped counting, though. Also counting times where a piece of a word was chopped of, the tensing was off, or a word was added where it didn't need to be, this category counted to sixteen. Sounds like a lot, but you have over 14,000 words. That's less than a .12% attrition rate for word placement. Which is phenomenal. But it can be even better, if you pick through your work with a fine tooth comb to find those last few imperfections.
One final area in grammar and technical merit, which is addressing and contributing dialog to a character. There were a handful of times that I had to really think exactly who was speaking, and once where I couldn't nail it down. This mostly came about from outbreaks of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, primarily from the use of 'the pegasus', when there was more than one pegasus in the scene. There were a few other nitpicks, but I've droned on in this category.

Score: 8/10
Tl;dr – learn your dialog punctuation rules (as you're already aware of), and see about addressing your Lavender Unicorn Syndrome. Read through and clean up any artifact words. Then do it again. Otherwise, fantastic.

In the category of plot and story progression!
I, personally, am a supporter of the Rainbow-Pie ship. I don't know why everyone wants to ship Applejack with Rainbow, but what are you going to do. My subjectiveness out of the way, let's proceed.
The story begins innocently enough, with Dash trying to wrap a present for Pinkie, but we don't exactly know why. There's obvious frustration and trepidation in the act, which gets me curious, and keeps me reading. Very little wasted breath here, which is something I could learn from, to be honest. I have a tendency to talk in circles. Hence my tl;dr score at the end of each category.
The scene shifts, early, which immediately tells me this will not be following Dash exclusively. Good to know. We're given background into an important question, why it was formulated, and just how completely tactless Twilight can be at times. The name of the book seems a little contrived, but then, most pony book names do. Let's face it, ponies are not good at deciding on names. Some discussion ensues about the nature of sexuality for the mane six, and we get some insight on everypony's perspective on the matter, as well as some juicy tidbits to stow away for later. I do wish something more had been done with Rarity's feelings toward the end, though. It just feels like a loose end to me. There's a couple along the way.
Twilight poses “the question”, and we get our first bite of conflict in the story. Dash reacts predictably, with spit and thunder and fury, which I think could be handled better. She is an extremely confrontational character, yes, and it doesn't feel out of character (which would be impossible to gage as we don't have a benchmark on sexuality in the ponyverse.) but this feels like one of those moments you felt might have been rushed. Everypony finding out about Dash's [spoiler A] raises additional questions for them, and doubts in Rainbow.
Later, Fluttershy confronts Dash in an effort to console her, as well as sate her own curiosity. Dash's middle name is a river in Egypt, which while predicable given the context of the story, is completely understandable. It runs so deep it sounds as though she's trying to convince herself more than anypony else, which is fantastic, and makes perfect sense in context. Especially with later plot developments.
We reach Sugar Cube Corner for the first time in the story, and get our second dose of conflict, which so far is making for a nice oscillation of problem/resolution/problem. An intense breach of trust results in some conflicting feelings between Dash and Pinkie, Dash's worries are explicitly voiced, but Dash believes she's smoothed things out. Especially given Pinkie's reaction to [spoiler A]. I don't know why I'm bothering to be so secretive about plot sensitive items, but it's fun. And here comes my first major complaint in regards to storyboard. Dash FAINTS, and Pinkie seems perfectly okay with it. Pinkie might strike most as an aloof, hyperactive individual, but I can't imagine she'd let that slip by with hardly a passing glance. This is the health and mental well being of the pony she supposedly loves, and she's just written it off. To top it all off... well, next scene.
There's some wonderful mood setting as the mane six begin to gather. Dash attempts to mend fences and actually has some success in that regard. There are more subtle and not-so-subtle hints that nearly everypony, except poor adorkable Twilight, knows what's going on. Twilight and Pinkie separate themselves from the group to talk in private, and Twilight asks “that question” again, to which Pinkie drops the mother of all bombshells about her's and Dash's relationship, right in front of Dash, after explicitly being asked not too. This is accompanied by a fantastically Pinkie pun, which felt both in place and out of place, which was perfect for the scene. I wanted to laugh, but I felt bad about it afterwards, given the state everypony was in. The obvious occurs, much to my satisfaction, though I was expecting hooves to fly, to be honest. In the end, feelings get hurt, Dash feels ostracized, and – though we don't know it at the time – understandably betrayed. Also, poor Rarity.
Dash flees, and monologues upon her feelings, blowing everything out of context and proportion. Not a lot going on for this short little paragraph, but it does a wonderful job of portraying Dash's feelings and her stance on the matter at the time.
We learn about Dash's experimentation in Flight Camp and thus begin to understand why she is so defensive about the entire situation. There's a lot of tension and reluctance as she sorts out her feelings, and ultimately tries to distract herself from her problems. She flies herself to the brink of exhaustion until Fluttershy passively confronts her, Rainbow taking it as an affront, and a not-so-polite request from her friends to leave 'the group', as Dash puts it. I wouldn't expect Fluttershy to be the one giving the pep talk, but you covered your bases here. Twilight's clueless, Pinkie's in tears, and Rarity would suffer a conflict of interest. Given their rivalry with one another, Dash likely wouldn't give Applejack the time of day, given how they broke off the previous night, and finally, Fluttershy and Dash had a long standing history. Well played.
And now, my second biggest complaint, chronologically. It's my biggest complaint in terms of plot direction, and that is Mr. Cake's reaction to Dash returning to Sugar Cube Corner. We don't have a lot of canon characterization for Mr. or Mrs. Cake, and this might just be my own personal opinion, and you do try to rationalize it somewhat, but... Mr. Cake just strikes me as overly harsh. What I do know of him, in canon, portrays Mr. Cake as a panicky individual, but never critical. Mind you, you're breaking new ground in terms of situations he's been involved in, so what do I know. It just doesn't seem like the right choice. There are ways to go about talking someone down without sounding like a tremendous [email protected]#$. And then we get the rational behind it, courtesy of Mr. Cake himself. He views Pinkie as a daughter figure, which threw me for a loop. Might be watching too much Friend is Witchcraft, and it's another one of those unexplored loose ends that nags at me to be explored, but can't be.
Finally, the climax arrives, but I don't have much to say in that regard, at least in terms of the story category.

Score: 9/10
Tl;dr – some of Dash's reactions feel pigeon-holed, like they were scripted and Dash's character had to compensate for it. The unexplored plot angles leave me curious and distracted from the main story. Consider cutting them down or out completely, or explore them a bit further.

And finally, in the category of characterization! My harshest, but shortest section.
Near. Perfect. Twilight was adorkable, curious, and not afraid to ask “that question” no matter the consequences. Rarity's mannerisms and vocabulary felt refined and deliberate. Her quip in the barn was spot on for her, and gave me a hearty laugh to boot. Rainbow was brazen and impulsive, often to her own detriment. Fluttershy seemed a bit more comfortable with everything going on that I expected, but these six have been friends with each other for going on two years now. Pinkie was... well, how do you describe Pinkie? And my god, dat pun. She seemed a touch unconcerned with the wellfare of her marefriend, though, which niggles at me considerably. Especially given her nature and ability for keeping secrets. Applejack played the responsible adult of the six, not really causing or solving anypony's problems, just letting things work out for themselves and stepping in to prevent bodily harm. But that's what she's good at, and that's why she is best pony. I've already expressed my disapproval for Mr. Cake, but your choices for his characterization seemed more plot related, and given that he was a one-scene-wonder, I thought it more pertinent to included the gist of that discussion in plot.
There were a few points in which the personalities of the ponies seemed a little jumbled, though. I don't think I've ever heard Twilight call Applejack 'AJ', for instance, nor can I ever recall a moment that Pinkie has called Twilight 'Twi'. My just be my faulty memory, but I can't place it.
Finally, from another one-scene-wonder, Thunderlane. There is practically zero characterization in canon for him, so what he's like and what he does is practically free reign, however, the end of the story played him crocked and straight at the same time, first breaking up Dash's announcement, then walking up to congratulate her on it, which seemed rather counter intuitive. It would have made loads more sense if literally anypony other than him had come up afterwards, after his initial outburst.

Score: 9/10
tl;dr – a few hiccups, but fantastic overall. Watch some more ponies and really crawl inside their heads, but you've already done a great job here. Be careful with background ponies, though. There isn't much too them, but it can be as carefully revered as any main character's canon.

Overall Score: 26/30
Would read again.
>> No. 116583
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116583
>>116579
A spot of trivia: Mr. Cake's view on Pinkie--while never articulated in the show--comes from the muzzle of the Allmother lips of Lauren Faust, and is thus commonly viewed as canon by those who know of it.

Also, your review makes me want to read this story.

Double also, thanks for spoilering stuff. I chose to poke it anyway, but it was a Kind gesture.
>> No. 116585
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116585
>>116514
There is a grammatical error in the title of this piece.

I lay claim.
>> No. 116586
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116586
>>116514
There is a grammatical error in the title of this piece.

I lay claim.
>> No. 116587
>>116583
hrm. good to know. makes me wonder what the relationship there is, though. as in, what happened with the Pies, or between the Pies and the Cakes, that could promote such a relationship.
crossing my fingers for some exposition in s3.
>> No. 116596
>>116585
Oh my god.

I forgot to review the chapter that you emailed me.

Please forgive me.
>> No. 116599
>>116579

Thanks for the review, I'm actually surprised you enjoyed it as much as you seemed to. You brought up a lot of good points I hadn't thought about, so I guess I'll be revising it for a while longer. I do have a couple questions about the mechanics though.

Regarding Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, I was under the impression that replacing names with physical descriptions was ok in moderation. Is that something I should never do under any circumstance?

You mention [narration][comma][start quote][dialog], which is the format I had originally, but I changed it because I was told the only time I should use a comma to transition between narration and dialogue was when using some form of 'he said', and not when the narration is only an action without using 'he said'.

For example,

He turned around and said, "I'm confused."

as opposed to

He turned around. "I'm confused."

But should that second sentence be

He turned around, "I'm confused."

No matter how hard I look, I can't seem to find an answer in any of the punctuation references I've been using.

Also, one final question about my fic itself; I've been working on cutting down its size and breaking it into multiple parts, because I thought there were a lot of points where it sort of dragged on. But you didn't mention it in the review, so is this something you noticed any, or just something I'm imagining?

Also, sorry if this wasn't the place to be asking these questions, this is the first time I've ever had something reviewed here and I'm not entirely clear on the rules.
>> No. 116600
>>116596
You are forgiven; Master Seattle likewise forgot. I'll probably remind him later.

I was going to give it until Wednesday before I started knocking on windows. I cannot expect you guys to have nothing on your plate but my story; how arrogant would that be?
>> No. 116606
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116606
>>116599
nope, this is definitely the place to ask.

regarding Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, I've had people say it's bad, I've had people say it's good, I've seen people say to avoid it like the plague, and others say it's fine in moderation. I'm in the moderation camp, myself, and to that extent, I believe you're overusing it somewhat. not to mention that it created some technical difficulties with identifying speakers and character's actions, as well. Very rarely does a descriptor need to be used, where the name of the character or an appropriately placed pronoun wouldn't suffice. but there are exceptions to every rule.

as for dialog transitions, I raided my bookshelf, and you've got a point. nowhere in any serialized novel did I even see the narration, comma, start quote, dialog sequence. kudos for sticking to your guns on that, and teaching me a thing or two myself. now I'm curious as to what the proper rule it in that regard.

finally, as to breaking it into chunks, know this. I'm insane. check the time stamps on my posts for picking up and reviewing this story. 2:24pm, to 6:27pm, same day. I devoured your 14k plus fic in a few hours, and wrote what I consider to be a fairly comprehensive review for it. before starting my current story, I considered 20k to be a good stopping point for a single chapter. I still consider it a good stopping point for a chapter, but have broken my current fic into 'episodes' to satisfy my own word count quota, with chapters being in smaller, more manageable bites. I don't understand how some people of capable of telling a full fledged story in under 10k. you impressed me in that regard. I am the last person to ask about segmenting your story. XD I write and read epics, but I will say that 7k seems to be most people's tolerance points for a chapter. for 14k words, I would consider breaking it into 3-4k segments. finding those breaks, though, I would consider a challenge. your story had me pretty thoroughly engaged from start to finish.

but again, I'm insane.
>> No. 116609
>6:37

and I call myself a math major. >_>
>> No. 116615
>>116606
>now I'm curious as to what the proper rule it in that regard.

First, you would capitalize the first letter of this (↑) sentence, then follow this (↓) link that so graciously helped me with my own dialogue questions.
http://www.be-a-better-writer.com/punctuate-dialogue.html
>> No. 116620
>>116615
that... actually didn't tell me anything I didn't already know. in fact, it just reinforced what I said in >>116579 which is a little perplexing. nice link, though.

as for my grammar typing in thread? if I didn't copy it out of a word processor first, it probably won't have correct capitalization at the beginning. I don't really know why this is. old IM and texting habits, I guess. should probably try and correct that habit, if I want to be taken seriously here.
>> No. 116624
>>116606
>as for dialog transitions, I raided my bookshelf, and you've got a point. nowhere in any serialized novel did I even see the narration, comma, start quote, dialog sequence. kudos for sticking to your guns on that, and teaching me a thing or two myself. now I'm curious as to what the proper rule it in that regard.
The proper rule is that you need to write complete sentences.

>"Hello," said Ezn.
is a complete sentence. It has a subject, a transitive verb (said, which needs an object to make sense) and an object, which in this case is a bit of dialogue.

>"I love grammar!" Ezn clicked "Reply" with gusto.
is two complete sentences, whereas
>"I love grammar," Ezn clicked "Reply" with gusto.
would make a comma splice.

The rule is here (scroll down a bunch): http://theeditorsblog.net/2010/12/08/punctuation-in-dialogue/
And also in here: http://www.crayne.com/articles/Dialogue--How-to-Punctuate,-Use-Tags,-and-Vary-the-Structure-of-Your-Dialogue.pdf
>> No. 116627
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116627
I'm sensing a lot of hostility from this thread all of a sudden.

Did I do something to piss someone off? Did I break some unwritten rule? Because now I've had two people nitpick my thread grammar. Both in ways that I don't particularly agree with, nor care about. If you want to critique my grammar, go find my story and hit that with your textbooks. I appreciate criticism in the workroom, not around the water cooler.
>> No. 116630
>>116627
>Because now I've had two people nitpick my thread grammar
Is one of them >>116624? I guess I can see how you could interpret my post as that, but attacking your John Egbert style of typing was not my intention (and those sentences I quoted are complete). I was talking entirely about the dialogue punctuation thing.

>The proper rule [for this narration/dialogue thing] is that you need to write complete sentences.
>> No. 116631
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116631
>>116630
Well, buck.
Now I feel like a jerk. I couldn't figure out how any of those were incomplete, and I was already a little on the defensive. My apologies.

Now I'm going to admit my own illiteracy and go google John Egbert.

>first link actually did have the rule for it, too.
>> No. 116632
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116632
>>116630
I gotta say, calling it "John Egbert style" seemed like overkill/snark, but that was witty nonetheless (and thanks for introducing me to the existence of John Egbert as a character).
>>116631
Don't feel bad. Feel glad. You learned something. Also, you swallowed your pride way better than I did in >>115652 when I was partly wrong about something (in the sense that I wasn't familiar with a particular sentence structure and misjudged instances of it, and then proceeded to make half-baked post-hoc retorts from rationalizations based on strict definition). So, good on you.

Some bickering about grammar isn't all bad, provided each party is capable of taking it in good humor. I say let's try to avoid making each other feel too stupid.
>> No. 116641
>>116632

Demetrius wrote something for the write-off? Ooo, I should probably start reading those then.
>> No. 116645
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116645
>>114546

So let me just start this off by saying that I'm rather impressed at how far you've come. That doesn't give you a stamp of perfection, though, so I'll just mention a few things which stood out to me.

1) starting sentences with "Well,..." and conjunctions i.e. "And"
You do this a lot. You're going for the informal tone, I know, but it's distracting, the "Well" instances more so than the "And". Why? 'cos they don't sound like prose sentences. They push your reader to the realization that they're reading something of someone's creation and not following the adventure, because you, that someone, keep on nudging yourself into the prose.

>Well, that explained the unnatural snowstorm.
Yeah, see, that's you, the author, telling us, not them, the characters, figuring it out.

Also personal preference, but, eh, you can't please everyone (lol irony).

This pushing effect isn't a bad thing in itself if played right, but the only times it's been "played right", in my experience, that come to mind are first-person with a strong narrative voice, usually snarky, e.g. Kyon in The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya light novels, and the works of literary geniuses such as Douglas Adams and Terry Prachett, and even then they use sentences that start with "Well" extremely rarely. And yours is neither.

Here's a guideline for you: can you remove the "Well" and rephrase it into direct thought without losing the meaning? If yes, then do it. /fic/'s somewhat divided on direct thought, but I like it, so I'd say that it's a better alternative to the "Well"s.

1b) Sentences like
>What the blazes did he think he was doing?
could be put into direct thought to avoid the above informalization.

2) Prologue: "Which naturally made them cranky"
That line still bugs me. Just thought I should let you know.

3) Knight's speech
It's pretty inconsistent. He speaks formally in the prologue and the beginning, but this sort of dissolves into
>Bet it was rather unpleasant
and its ilk. That line was the only one that stood out to me, but you need to determine just how rigid is his formal voice going to be. I'd advise you to have him stick to the formal way of talking, so that 1) you establish him clearer, 2) it doesn't seem like he gets all buddy-buddy with them so quickly.

4) Show vs. tell
Not too bad. The Windigo fight scene could have used less tell and more sensory details. Like, actual cold on actual skin. But otherwise it was fine.

5) Miscellaneous lines:
>a male voice so deep and smooth that Twilight felt another little shiver
I won't hesitate to remind you that you're walking a tightrope here. No need to rock the cradle any more than necessary.

>trouble. Or she was going to have some strong words with him.
replace period with comma

>Thankfully though, by the time she’d wandered back into the library, Applejack were there to greet her at least.
>Applejack were there to greet her at least
Read this sentence. Read it. Read ittttt. Then give yourself a smack on the hand for being silly and fix it. Also, that "though" could do with removing.

>She was thankfully caught before she could fall too far
Remove the thankfully

>She hit like a sack of potatoes
Hit what?

>Twilight turned on the stranger and yelled, “Why’d you do-” but what was cut off by an enraged screech from non-pony lips.
>but what was cut off
wat

>Well, that explained the unnatural snowstorm.
Windigos are an ancient race enshrined in pony lore. Why the heck is Twilight so causal about their reemergence? It's like going to the local mall and saying "Oh, hey, it's a minotaur. lolkay".

>where the Windigos took a distinct dislike.
replace "where" with "to which"

>When they’d made a few dozen feet in the exact opposite direction of Ponyville
The imagery of this is lost. What sort of action is "made" supposed to be?

>Twilight shook her head to clear the stars, before shouting,
comma after stars is wrong, delete

>thundered Rainbow Dash, finally having made her hooves
>made her hooves
>made
>hooves
I hope the error here is self-evident.

>“Been having much worse than damaged pride, you stupid foal"
Eh, this sounds like you're trying to express a sentence with too few words. Redo it to flow better, something that links to "I could've" to form a more commonly-used sentence structure.

>She leapt at him, making to do some damage,
Yarrr.

>For the most part: Rainbow Dash’s
improper use of colon

>everyponies’
I think the accepted convention is "everypony's"

6) Consider merging the Prologue and Chapter 1. I saved a MS doc copy of your two GDocs so that I could read it without the Internet, and I prefer the immediate flow merging brings. You see, every time you have a chapter in a separate doc, you give the reader an option to stop reading. Most fics sort of avoid this problem because their first chapters, or first docs, are longer than <1000 words. By the time the reader is challenged with the choice to continue, given that the story's good enough, the reader will have invested enough in the process of reading to move on. To leave would be to lose that investment. You've got <1000 words. That's not enough potential loss to provide a driving force.

7) Personal experience with power-blessed, super'd, cheesy somewhat-antagonistic OCs played straight has taught me this: you can never lampoon them hard enough. Never. Hard. Enough. The reason why this version is good is because you've got this principle into gear. You've got the disbelief. You've got the reader rallying to Twilight's POV, and Twilight rallying to the reader's POV. You have a relatable point which closes the distance between text and brain. It will take Twilight ages to come around to accept him. It should. When it does, and the process is organic and true to character, you will have succeeded. But not before. So don't have her lower her defenses right when Chapter 2 kicks off, because that will ruin everything you've managed to keep so far.

This version is definitely better than the previous. It's a lot more Twilight-centric, the characters sound more like themselves, and you have just enough lampooning to keep Knight non-repulsive. Don't take this as a pass to just do whatever, though - the characters, their clashing personalities, events - you need to keep up this level, nay, exceed it to realize your vision. But you probably know that already. You've come some ways; now go on some more. I'll admit, I was feeling pretty satisfied when I finished reading. You managed to prove my doubts wrong. It's with a degree of acknowledgement that I end this review: keep writing.
>> No. 116659
Title: Random Elements
Author: Stryke
Tags: [Adventure][Alternate Universe]
Synopsis: The ponies that could have wielded the Elements of Harmony have been thrown into a strange alternate Equestria where the sun actually comes up in the morning, worse there are other versions of themselves here. strange ponies completely opposed to how they should be.

Somehow they’ve got to find a way home but how can they do that when most of them before now haven’t even met each other?
Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/40456/Random-Elements
Word count: 7,624

Hi, I'm hoping for some help polishing up the first chapter as far as the grammar goes after getting knocked back by ED, though if you want to check out the whole thing then feel free.

In the rejection I was told I've got issues with Capitalization, Comma use, Comma splices, Spelling, Missing spaces, Dialogue punctuation, Possessive nouns and Compound word hyphenation.

I've been through the fic repeatedly though and I can't see the problems hence me coming to you guys. Specific examples of where I'm messing up under each of those errors especially would be amazing.

Thanks in advance.
>> No. 116676
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116676
>>116516
A little late on this reply but here we go:

You are most welcome!

I hesitated to say that the story needed a total rewrite because that's the most drastic of steps and not something I wanted to say was necessary. However, if you the author feel that the only way to get your story up to snuff is to overhaul it, then trust your gut on that. Don't feel that you wasted anytime finishing your story only to find out you need a rewrite. No writing is a waste of time. It's better to write 10,000 words of garbage (which this story was far from) and learn from them then to write nothing at all.

I wish you the best of luck on your future endeavors. It's good to just move onto other ideas sometimes. Trying to rewrite something won't do you any good if you're sick of looking at it. In fact, it's not a bad idea to work on several things at once. It gives you time to take a breather on a story by working on something else. It keeps your writing fresh.

I have no doubt that you came out of this endeavor a better writer. It's obvious to me that you have the skills and the ideas to make good stories, that writing brilliance is there just beneath the surface of this story, just get a good sized drill and get digging.

I too have stories that I keep by my side, one of them a pony story as well, that I look at with an amused grin at how poorly done it was. Some point down the line, I'm going to return to it and make it what I originally intended but until then, it's been a fantastic stepping stone.

Reviewers and pre-readers are indeed one of the best thing amateur writers such as ourselves could ask for and I'm glad that I could do my part. I very much appreciate that you appreciate my review. You don't have to feel compelled to implement or hold on to my review if you don't want to, I wouldn't consider it a waste of my time, but the fact that you did is awesome and I'm glad I could help out.
>> No. 116696
First off, thank you for your time. Also, yay, I’m getting some real forward progress at last!

Now, please bear with me as I dive into debating and discussing some of the below points with you. As is tradition, of course.

***

1. Hmm, I really thought that wouldn’t be so much of an issue. It isn’t a first person perspective I’m using for my story, but I thought those would help us identify more with Twilight. A little deviation into some of her thoughts to help draw us into her perspective more. They sounded good on paper to me, and I also believed it would help vary sentence structure to avoid becoming repetitive. If nothing else though, I can admit that I probably use them too often and so should at least go through and trim it down. Let’s hope I can avoid needing a weed-eater.

1b. Okay, that might work and help get rid of some of the above problem if I used it right, but how do I “put it into direct thought”? Do I put it in italics, using first person narration? If yes, I should tell you that I’ve been using italics for “written” pieces of the story later where a character is reading something (like a book). So, direct thought using italics might be an interesting idea, but I’d worry on confusing a reader if I start using those too freely next. Any suggestions?

2. Crap. I liked the joke, but it’s not as entertaining as I kept hoping it would be. I suppose I should just get rid of it. Doesn’t add too much and you don’t get second chances at first impressions, after all.

3. Huh, I didn’t think there was such a change of tone. I’ll need to look into that. His speech is supposed to be only somewhat formal (You should’ve seen some of the first drafts. Way more formal sounding and I don’t like it the more I look at it), depending on situation. He deviates into a less formal language for a reason, but I always thought he maintained a reasonable degree of formality in his dialogue even then, so I didn’t feel he ever actually left his character.

In this vein of thought, doesn’t tone of speech often change depending on whom you’re speaking too? You’d never talk to a police officer, or other figure of authority, like you might talk to a close friend, because it’s a matter of respect. At work, you’d also not talk to a subordinate like you’d talk to a superior or a person at your level, which is a matter of being professional. How you talk to a friend can vary greatly, depending on the level of trust and closeness between you and that friend. The tone used often says a lot about the way someone views another being, or the way that being will view them in return.

4. I’ll take another look at that scene. Maybe I can work that over a bit.

5. Okay, I’ll just point out the ones that actually need argument or explanation from either from me or you as many others were either just missed bits or plain stupidity.

>a male voice so deep and smooth that Twilight felt another little shiver

Gah! Get away from me, you unholy undead! Back! Back to the grave from whence you stumbled! I killed so many of these, but I really should start double-tapping them to make sure. The purpose was just supposed to reveal the way his voice sounds, I swear. I’ll take care of it.

>She hit like a sack of potatoes

The ground. The previous sentence mentioned her being yanked to the dirt, but I suppose adding ‘the ground’ here won’t kill me. This will be fixed.

>Twilight turned on the stranger and yelled, “Why’d you do-” but what was cut off by an enraged screech from non-pony lips.
>but what was cut off

This doesn’t work? What is it exactly that’s wrong here?

>Well, that explained the unnatural snowstorm.

Hmm. That was a (supposedly) helpful thing for the reader and, again, a small journey into Twilight’s thoughts. Also, I thought it might be a nice line. Maybe I should extend the paragraph this is in more a little more, and put the line itself as a single sentence paragraph. That might be a better use for it than the one I have with the Diamond Dogs. Would that work?

>“Been having much worse than damaged pride, you stupid foal"

Would ‘had’ instead of ‘been having’ be better here?

>everyponies’

There’s more than one pony though, so wouldn’t grammar dictate that a plural possessive be used? “One” is rather neutral, needing only an s to be added, but the word ‘pony’ actually changes depending on number. I thought I was doing the right thing. I’ll change it, if that isn’t the case.

6. That’s very nice reasoning. I’d personally thought it best to use the prologue as my hook, a short taste so readers could decide if they wanted to go further, but that works better for trailers than stories it would seem. I’ll combine them.

7. This was actually the original intent of some of those choices I made for his character, as well as some of the ideas I’d originally planned for the story itself. How I ever wound up actually playing those completely straight, I’ll never know. Maybe it was just how much I liked the character, and the nice backstory I’ve made for him, and I let myself grow too fond of his scenes. Hopefully this newer draft I’m working on continues with improvement, and I avoid those nasty pitfalls in the future.

******

In conclusion, it’s nice to know you were actually able to enjoy this one a little. Makes me feel loads better about the worth of this story. As for how Chapter Two goes, that actually has been made. (Had a good week to think of how this story plays out in its newer form. Made another couple chapters as well and I’m working on chapter five.)

So, that said and in shameless fashion, I ask: You interested?
>> No. 116707
Hey Minjask, I will not be able to respond to your comments for the next three weeks or so because I'm going out of town. Thanks for helping me out with my story and I'll look through it again once I get back.
>> No. 116709
File 134536144232.jpg - (10.38KB , 217x232 , mhm.jpg )
116709
>trip because chan culture

>>116696
>1. ...but I thought those would help us identify more with Twilight. A little deviation into some of her thoughts to help draw us into her perspective more... and I also believed it would help vary sentence structure to avoid becoming repetitive...
>1b.but how do I “put it into direct thought”? ... Any suggestions?
Right on most accounts, but the way you're doing it now comes with an unnecessary cost, as explained previously. Direct thought would be putting it into italics + present tense, yes. Of course, moderation is key, and direct thought is still inferior to showing since it has a very tell-y tendency to it.

>So this is direct thought. He stretched an arm. Not bad, and it's in present tense too. Fancy.

How big is your reading part? Personally, I prefer to keep my italics reserved for direct thought only, since I use a lot of it, and let the rest e.g. emphasis, quoting and reading run on their own. Direct thought applies to whatever goes inside the character's head. So if Twi were reading in her mind, it'd be:

> Chapter one. Let's see... So and so did so and so, while the pony named You walked on. You was looking for a picture of his that had gone missing. And thus ends the story, mused Twilight. Wait, what? Oh, there's more. Chapter two. And so on, so forth. I'm sorry, is there a point to this?

where her own thoughts are mixed in to what she's reading silently. If it goes on too long, you've have a chunk of italics, which is plain ugly. So a better option would be:

>Twilight opened the book and began reading soundlessly. "Chapter one. Dumbledore kills Snape. Huh. I wonder what that means. It was a fine and sunny morning..."

or a mix, which, while more technically right, because there is a difference evident for d. thought and reading, is rather ugly in itself:

>Her lips twitched as she read silently. "Chapter one: Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins." Ugh, sorry, what? "My sin, my soul... Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue, something, something..." I can't stand this. Who wrote this and why does Spike have it under his pillow?

Of greater importance though would be keeping the reading part interesting. Formatting is secondary and mostly aesthetic compared to that. Other reviewers, feel free to tear me to bits kindly correct me if I'm wrong.

>3. Huh, I didn’t think there was such a change of tone. I’ll need to look into that. His speech is supposed to be only somewhat formal (You should’ve seen some of the first drafts. Way more formal sounding and I don’t like it the more I look at it), depending on situation. He deviates into a less formal language for a reason, but I always thought he maintained a reasonable degree of formality in his dialogue even then, so I didn’t feel he ever actually left his character. In this vein of thought, doesn’t tone of speech often change depending on whom you’re speaking too? You’d never talk to a police officer, or other figure of authority, like you might talk to a close friend, because it’s a matter of respect. At work, you’d also not talk to a subordinate like you’d talk to a superior or a person at your level, which is a matter of being professional. How you talk to a friend can vary greatly, depending on the level of trust and closeness between you and that friend. The tone used often says a lot about the way someone views another being, or the way that being will view them in return.
He's a creature thing released from underground after a ridiculously long period of time, so he has culture shock to deal with. There's an air of condescension and cockiness about him, not to mention the looming difference in magical power. You tell me what sort of tone is he supposed to have when talking to others.

>Twilight turned on the stranger and yelled, “Why’d you do-” but what was cut off by an enraged screech from non-pony lips.
>but what was cut off
Replacing the "what" with "she" or "the rest of her sentence" would fix it. I can't say what the problem is aside from it not reading right.

>Well, that explained the unnatural snowstorm.
>Hmm. That was a (supposedly) helpful thing for the reader and, again, a small journey into Twilight’s thoughts. Also, I thought it might be a nice line. Maybe I should extend the paragraph this is in more a little more, and put the line itself as a single sentence paragraph. That might be a better use for it than the one I have with the Diamond Dogs. Would that work?
It was helpful, but it's the laziest way you could present the information. Going, "Well, such and such" is nonchalant, non-emotive, and not framed as part of the story, feeling more like an aside you put in there.

What bothered me more was the nonchalance of Twilight regarding the windigos.

>“Been having much worse than damaged pride, you stupid foal"
>Would ‘had’ instead of ‘been having’ be better here?
I'd go with "Had a lot worse to deal with than...", personally.

>There’s more than one pony though, so wouldn’t grammar dictate that a plural possessive be used? “One” is rather neutral, needing only an s to be added, but the word ‘pony’ actually changes depending on number. I thought I was doing the right thing. I’ll change it, if that isn’t the case.
It's pony vernacular. The best we have is the status quo, and "everpony's" is the status quo. It's a debatable point, but not the sort of thing you want to bring up in Chapter 1 of your story.

>7. This was actually the original intent of some of those choices I made for his character, as well as some of the ideas I’d originally planned for the story itself. How I ever wound up actually playing those completely straight, I’ll never know. Maybe it was just how much I liked the character, and the nice backstory I’ve made for him, and I let myself grow too fond of his scenes. Hopefully this newer draft I’m working on continues with improvement, and I avoid those nasty pitfalls in the future.
This, pretty much.

>So, that said and in shameless fashion, I ask: You interested?
I'm torn. I'd like to take you on and see you at least some ways down the road, but leaving you 15k, 20k words in is probably worse than leaving you now, since you'd have to look for someone else to be your consistent reviewer. I can't guarantee how good my advice will be, or how long you might have to wait to receive it, but I'll still give you a tentative yes.

I'd prefer it if we did business via the TG - it holds me to public account. =P
>> No. 116714
Title: Caveat Emptor: Let the Buyer Beware

Author: Brony Z-Ro

Tags: Sad, Dark, Adventure

Synopsis: Voices in her head, strange hallucinations, patches of memory going blank? If Twilight Sparkle didn't know better, she'd think she was going insane! But when her friends begin to suffer alongside her, she realizes that something much, much darker is taking place. Searching for answers, Twilight makes a horrifying discovery, and suddenly, more than just her sanity is at stake. A secret that Celestia
has kept hidden for centuries is about to come to light. And this secret didn't like being cooped up...


Story: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/5117/Caveat-Emptor%3A-Let-the-Buyer-Beware

Unpublished Chapter: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1gqmsWeEySm_ZCbnFU_IX8aQX-iE07IUrCAyC2pI2-2E/edit



I've taken a bit of a hiatus, but now I'm back. What I want concentrated on are chapter 3 and chapter 4, because those probably suck the most. If you DO chose to review this, thanks! And for anypony who remembers me, it's great to be back!
>> No. 116719
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116719
>>116283
Going into this without context. I did read the prologue, but nothing after that... Let's see how we do.

And, an hour later, I'm done.

Line-by-line in doc. A couple of silly edits, but grammar's otherwise clean.

Also, wow. I had a good feeling about it when I read the prologue, and I knew you were working your heart out with this, not to mention you having collected a team of potent reviewers, but this story here is pretty damn good. It was immersive, you had the tone and mood set up with plenty of visual detail, and the gore parts had the amount of weight they needed without actually being gorey at all. Also, the characters felt in character, with Bentgrass not feeling above Twilight in terms of importance. Everpony played a part, and it paid off in the form of interactions being interesting. Heck, I was almost willing to forego the parts where my overbearing logic told me "No" because I wanted to read on.

The only problem I have is with how the windows that lower one into the basement are located outside the hospital. If the place that they needed to go was accessible from the outside, why try and break into the hospital in the first place?

Other than that, though, you have a solid story. Hope this got to you in time for your next release!
>> No. 116720
File 134537067094.jpg - (45.41KB , 457x759 , 36566 - pinkie_pie_head_explode.jpg )
116720
>>116719
Yay! Glad to know you liked it!

Yeah, Like I said, all of my normal editors are busy or have IRL drama, so I was kinda flapping in the breeze. Thanks for the help.

>Heck, I was almost willing to forego the parts where my overbearing logic told me "No" because I wanted to read on.

Um, out of curiosity, would that be the... eheh, "murder weapon?" If so, then yes, I was kind of expecting that reaction. All's I can say is trust me. It'll all make sense in a few chapters, if you choose to keep reading. ^_^
>> No. 116721
File 134537091093.jpg - (7.40KB , 177x177 , okay.jpg )
116721
>>116393
I'm on a roll today. I have about, eh, an hour, an hour and a half until I leave with friends for dinner. Let's see how far we get.

Okay. So your opening is fine. Then we get Slam Dunk. Then we get Slam Dunk's friend, who is introduced as:
>He was Foul Line, Dunk's best friend.

I'm sorry, what? His introduction could be more smoother, i.e. don't make it sound like you, the author, are coming in with a giant foam finger and telling us "THIS IS HIS FRIEND". Make it flow. Something like

>The white coated, red-maned stallion walked into the building. Despite his quick trot, Foul Line, his best friend, managed to follow with ease. His normally messy white mane had been [...], and his black coat was gleaming, having been groomed just for the occasion.

You'll see that I've added extra action descriptions, and extra visual details. Both of these descriptions imply that the two are excited, and that it's a big day for them. This is something you lack - details that we can pick up on.

>The white coated, red-maned stallion walked into the building. Next to him, a bulky black-coated, white-maned stallion followed. He was Foul Line, Dunk's best friend. They walked through the doors and headed to the waiting area.

The first actions your main character does is "walk into a building" and "walk through the doors", then "headed to the waiting area". There's no zest or life in that. There should be, given the situation and how momentous it is, but setting the scene with your opening paragraph isn't enough - you need to maintain it.

Also, "Foul" as a first name is almost as hilariously bad/painfully hilarious as "Filthy Rich". Just saying.

And then your characters start talking and sound like complete jocks, with basketball terminology flying over my head like Patchouli's Agni Shrine spellcard.

See, if I were to write a Touhou fanfic (assuming you don't know what Touhou is) and fill the action scenes with descriptions of "grazing", "deathbombing", "focus-firing", you'd sort of get it. But you'd also sort of not get it. And that not getting it is precisely what I'm feeling.

"Deepest draft" - okay, I can assume that to be good.
"Everypony projected to go in the first round played for teams that made at least the Elite Eight in this year’s College Championship." - long sentence is long and hard to digest. I glazed over this.
"draft a power forward with a mean three pointer" - I know what a 3 pointer is, and sort of get power forward.
"an open look" - "challenge outside the arc" - okay, you've lost me.

You see, when people run into things they don't understand, they glaze over and try to understand based on context. That's how most people learn new words, by using context. But when you pile your terminology talk like so, and there's no context in which this is understandable, you lose your reader. It doesn't help that Slam Dunk is cocky - not the acceptable sort of cocky you find with fictional characters, but a cockiness that resembles real-life jocks too much, which results in mild irritation. That in itself is not a problem. In fact, I'd say that it's a decent way of making an identifiable character. But he's not someone I'd come to like, so if you were aiming for that, well, there you go.

>Hold up. Hold up. Even Foul Line got drafted ahead of me? Foul Line can’t score! Sure, he pulls in boards really well. But he’s been a sub-par shooter ever since he started playing! Dunk thought to himself.
Direct thought needs to be in italics, as so:

>Hold up. Hold up. Even Foul Line got drafted ahead of me? Foul Line can’t score! Sure, he pulls in boards really well. But he’s been a sub-par shooter ever since he started playing! Dunk thought to himself.

Yes, it could be a stylistic quirk on your behalf. No, it doesn't add anything to the story, and is in fact a bit distracting. Also, the "to himself" is redundant. Who else could he be thinking to?

>the Los Pegasus Lakers select Quick Shot, out of Salt Lick City College!
>[name] out of [place]
I'm not familiar with these, but shouldn't it be [name] from [place]?

>That was it. His career was finished before it had even started. Nobody paid attention to undrafted players. Ever. How could this have happened? Dunk was wondering whether he would even play at all.
But isn't basketball a sport that anyone can play at any time? So he wants to play professionally. Then foreshadow it more at the beginning that this is his intention. http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/Foreshadowing Have him daydream about actually playing in a professional game, being lauded, doing generally jock-y things. Lift him higher so that when he falls, it makes a sound. Has more impact, I mean.

>Now, undrafted, his future was uncertain.
How about going to college and getting a proper job? Sorry, having an Asian moment. But seriously, is this supposed to be tragic? Because to me, a reader that does not share his dreams, is in fact not very tolerant of jocks, and does not feel for the character that much (because we're only 1000 words in), this isn't tragic, just a bit whiny. I'll admit it's not terribad, but, eh, if you were going for epic moment of feels, this isn't giving me that.

>Sure Shot, the Hall of Fame member of the draft’s TV coverage
The significance of this character is lost on me, because that description tag is shoddy. It tries to cram what I need to know about the character into a puny additional tag, like some sort of aside. I don't know what a member of a draft TV coverage is supposed to be. Really, read it - member of a coverage?

>playing in a zone defense versus pony to pony coverage
Moar jargon, this time as a means of justification. The justification falls weak and is actually distracting as I try to figure out just what exactly this is supposed to mean.

>Ponies will have better looks than you sometime
What do looks have to do with anything (snark about how everything mainstream is just a bid to win the teenage slice of the money market aside)?

>“Kid, it’s a team game. Look, I know you were always friends with the guys on your teams, but there’s more to being a team player than just being friends with them. Ponies will have better looks than you sometime. It’s part of the game. It doesn’t make anypony better or worse than you. It’s just a part of the game.”
>“The sooner you figure out that the world doesn’t revolve around you and that this is a team sport the sooner you’ll figure out why you didn’t get drafted. Will you make it on a tryout? Probably. Should you be? That’s not my call to make. But I’ll tell you this. I played in the league for fifteen years. I’ve seen all kinds of ponies come through teams. You got talent. But you don’t get it yet,” Shot finished.
Do you see this? I see an unwarranted moment of Zen that just feels preachy. Does this Sure Shot guy know SD personally? If yes, then, well, I didn't know that, and he still sounds preachy. If not, then how does he even know all of this? From watching replays? Watching replays doesn't give you enough authority to make personal cracks at a person so liberally.

I also see a massive chunk of dialogue with no emotion or actions. It's Talking Head Syndrome, and I suggest you look over your other instances of dialogue for this. You need to spice it up by giving us a clearer image. Ponies don't just talk. There's body language and sensory details and visual details to be used. Again, moderation is key, but right now you have too little of it.

>He could see where that thinking had got him.
So wait, he's learnt his lesson already? I'm sorry, what?

Now a quick repentance is all right and all, and plausible, but this one feels a little rushed. Take time for him to dwell on moments where he one-up'd his teammates for the sake of himself. Draw out the conclusion.

Also, if he really did learn his lesson, then that's going to hit you hard in terms of character development. You see, his pride is, so far, his biggest flaw. Now that his pride is solved, that's the end of your major conflict (so far) and thus the driving force for your story.

>Of course Sure Shot had talked to his dad. He had been the three-point anchor for his dad’s championship teams.
Sure, just casually mention something that sounds important but doesn't really, making me wonder which is the case and thus distracting me from the story.

>Air said.
Wait, so now you're just going to try and sneak his name in like that? Son, you're skimping too much on the writing work 'ere. Either introduce him properly if he's important or don't introduce him at all. Work your way around having to mention his name: "his father continued", "the gruff voice said", "he said"

>The Kickers? The same Kickers that hadn’t made the playoffs in almost fifteen years?
This would do well in direct thought

>A/N:
No. Purge your mid-story A/Ns with the fury of a thousand suns. If you have to have them, put them at the beginning of the story, or the end of the last chapter (which is where they rightfully belong). It breaks immersion and flow.

More notes:
>It was the most famous arena, in the world’s most famous city.
I'd delete the comma

> ponies whose livelihoods were based off others abilities on the court.
others', with the apostrophe, and this line doesn't make sense, since basketball isn't the only sport in the world.

>A few boos echoed here and there, and Stern Gaze only smirke
You make it sound like the only sound audible were the boos. Are they? Fill in the details about the scene. Also, I'd break it up at "Stern Gaze", and replace only with "merely".

>Hello ladies and gentlecolts. Welcome to the two thousand thirty two EBL Draft
Lacks the oomph and showmanship these events generally have. Consider something like:
>"Ladies and gentlecolts! Welcome, one and all, to the two-thousand-thirty-second EBL drafts!"
>insert description about crowd cheering in response immediately as of compared to in a new paragraph, because you lose the intimacy of connection
Note the "thirty-second", btw.

>Punctuation
Your ellipses are spaced wrongly in the first half and correctly in the first half.
This... is correct.
This...is not.

Your dashes are ugly.
This- is not how it goes. Space it evenly, one before and one after - like this. The proper way would be to use the full emdash, here: — but that's only if you're dead serious with this, and hey, it's fanfic.

I'm a reader who no basketball knowledge whatsoever. Maybe I'm not your target audience. But the writing itself could do with a good deal of improvement.

In conclusion:
1) you need to flavour your text a lot more with details that show emotion, as well as general scene-setting
2) cut down on the confusing jargon
3) consider making Dunk's personal growth less shallow
4) fix up your punctuation
5) italicize direct thoughts
6) foreshadow your character's motives better

If you wish, you can keep this in the queue for the other two chapters. Just make a post saying so. But I'd advise you, in the interest of saving time, to take what you've learned from this and apply it to the other chapters before re-submitting, so that other reviewers don't point out what you should already know. I'm not going to do the other two chapters, btw, since I'd rather you try your own hand at scene-building and emotion first before going on. Feel free to reply with any comments or rebuttals or clarifications, and keep writing.
>> No. 116723
File 134537115820.jpg - (10.38KB , 217x232 , mhm.jpg )
116723
>>116720
Naw, I actually really liked it. It was a twist that I didn't see coming, and very smart on your behalf. Maybe it's me, but I have moments of immense appreciation when I see a clever plot device, rather than surprise or just awe.
>> No. 116724
File 134537146397.jpg - (3.79KB , 211x239 , derp.jpg )
116724
>>116721
>mfw multipost

>I'm a reader who no basketball knowledge whatsoever.
Derp. "with", not "who.

And I forgot to mention: your fic as it stands isn't bad. Your characters would be pretty vibrant, and it seems like this would make a good tale. It's just dry and mangled by the execution, resulting in something that overall is meh.
>> No. 116736
File 134538078022.jpg - (38.73KB , 361x500 , Baron.jpg )
116736
>>116514
I now have a picture of an old lady with blue hair selling knives. What more do you need?



So.

I looked at your request, and, as noted previously, spotted a grammar error in the title; I shall tell the story of why I think this is important. See, I saw the title saying: "Pride of Magic, Earth and Sky," and read it as: "Pride of Magic: Earth and Sky." As you can imagine, this leads to either thinking that only Unicorns are mentioned in this pride, or unicorns are left out and the Pegasi and Earth ponies frolic in their own magic. It was after reading the synopsis and looking at the picture did I realize what you meant. For this reason, I insist on the Oxford comma.


So.
Pride of Magic, Earth, and Sky.

Concept:
This is a tale of ponies. Long before the Goddess sisters stepped down to walk among them and show them the way, the ponies lived peacefully. Forgotten are the petty differences that so violently divided them on the shores of yesteryear, the three tribes of Unicorn, Pegasus, and Earth ponies come together in blissful harmony. Their lives are quiet, serene, and full of joy, but there is at least one being believes things are getting a little dull. That's okay, though; he has just the thing for that.

Just a little bit of Chaos to spice things up.
====

Your concept, near as I can tell, is leading up into the Discord Wars, a period of history not actually covered in the show. Not a bad thing, by any means, and it gives you such creative freedom to play around in. So far, I think, you are doing a good job.

Structure - Technical:
You do have technical issues; common ones include punctuating dialogue, comma (mis)use, and such things as have been noted in in-doc comments. I did not mark every single one of your systemic errors, but I still expect you to find and correct them. Additionally, I attempted to show you why such things were in error in the hopes that you could learn from it, rather than just blindly following my every word. THEREFORE! If you disagree with anything I said, feel free to ignore/defend yourself.

Some paragraphs are a little odd. I pointed out some unnecessary paragraph breaks, but others I left, primarily because, though I didn't agree with the breaks, I saw the reason they were there. This part is entirely optional, but I would suggest getting a few references as to what a paragraph should be. This may help cut back on too many breaks.

Overall, though, you have a good mastery of grammar.

Structure - Story:
You have very good pacing, though the prologue is a little slow. This is to say that those with little patience will be turned off by the first several paragraphs. This is not to say that you need to throw in some explosions to grab people's attention; far from it. If you want to correct it, I would recommend changing how the information is presented; rather than, say, info dumping on the first page, weave that into the narrative of Discord trying to witness fresh disorder.

I cannot comment too much on 'Show vs. Tell,' primarily because I am still struggling with it myself, but info dumps like the first page clearly fall into 'tell' territory. Most of the rest is free from this, as I can see, but first impressions matter.

Also, I do like how you throw in the information packets in green at the chapter's ends. Bear in mind, however, that not everyone will appreciate them, so be sure to leave highly important information out of there; we don't want someone missing an important plot point because they didn't like reading the greentext.

Characterization:
Most are OCs, and you do a good job of keeping them consistent, and that's all we can ask for on that (as well as making them believable, and you pull that off nicely too). We don't get a lot of time with these characters so far, so I hope that you can maintain this consistency when we do see them again. Discord, I must say, is fairly easy to write so long as you have imagination, and in the small amount of time he is on screen, I cannot fault you in that. You have a few minor characters who seem to be in need of a bit more thought (Orange Patch comes to mind), but that is the exception, not the rule.

The Chancellor, however...
Now, as I mentioned in comments, our only image of the Chancellor is Pinkie Pie's acting (or lack thereof). While one might easily argue that Pinkie simply read lines and played herself, one could also argue that she was chosen for the role because she fit it so well. To this end, the Chancellor falls short. I have already mentioned the fact that you have the Chancellor being a stallion. In addition, you have him being a shrewd, calculating pony, who would not surprize me in the least if he had accurate predictions of the next twenty years of how things would go down, based upon the events he sees today. This is, quite obviously, not the bouncy, bubbly, can't-think-past-this-second Chancellor we saw in Hearth's Warming. If you can justify this, then great; please do so. If not, then try to figure him out.

Overall:
Well.

Do not be discouraged by the copious red marks I left in-doc. Seriously. This story is engaging and intriguing, and I, for one, want to see where it goes and what you can do with it. This is, so far, a very good work. It is well thought out, well paced, and quite worth the time.

May your pen never run out of ink.
>> No. 116737
Beautiful Freak

by Damocles23

Tags: [sad] [shipping]

In the most important day of Rainbow Dash's life, the only one of her friends that is missing is Pinkie Pie.

The only thing left of her is a letter.

A letter in which the pink pony poured all of her heart...

A letter in which there is everything she wished to say to the pegasus...and couldn't find the courage.

Words Count: 8,275


http://www.fimfiction.net/story/43088/Beautiful-Freak

Just a simple review and pre-read request. I posted a thread about it before but i've been said to post it here, so ignore the first one.
>> No. 116742
File 134538496902.jpg - (7.58KB , 184x184 , patchy.jpg )
116742
>>116736
>In addition, you have him being a shrewd, calculating pony, who would not surprize me in the least if he had accurate predictions of the next twenty years of how things would go down, based upon the events he sees today. This is, quite obviously, not the bouncy, bubbly, can't-think-past-this-second Chancellor we saw in Hearth's Warming. If you can justify this, then great; please do so. If not, then try to figure him out.
Considering that s/he was the leader of the Earth ponies, easily the most disadvantaged of the three in lore, s/he would have to be shrewd and calculating if the Earth ponies ever planned to make out of the crisis alive. Just saying.
>> No. 116743
>>116709

>How big is your reading part?

One, kinda long paragraph (excerpt from a book) in chapter 2 and a single word in chapter 4. Might be some longer bits down the road, but I suppose I can see about what I'll need to do.

>but what was cut off

Whoops. I'll take care of that. The “what” shouldn’t be there. Don’t know how I missed that.

>It's pony vernacular. The best we have is the status quo, and "everpony's" is the status quo. It's a debatable point, but not the sort of thing you want to bring up in Chapter 1 of your story.

Well, I’ve no interest in stirring up war over a single word. Consider it dealt with.

>I'm torn. I'd like to take you on and see you at least some ways down the road, but leaving you 15k, 20k words in is probably worse than leaving you now, since you'd have to look for someone else to be your consistent reviewer. I can't guarantee how good my advice will be, or how long you might have to wait to receive it, but I'll still give you a tentative yes.

You know what? The fact I can get you for more than one chapter is already awesome in my book. The more I can get anyone to look at is the more that I can at least have an idea of what needs working on. (I mean, just look at chapter one. Imagine if I’d set the old version loose somewhere. Okay, you can stop screaming now.)

I don’t know, or really care, if you’re a complete expert. You have some good thoughts at least, and I liked picking at them. So, here are Chapters 2-4, put up so the board can see I’m requesting you to look:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1cpMWQb3-xTzGfw2loZK3UU6ny1ICF8E4fiMtQRumUiY/edit

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1T2o7aJiJ7GAf9PJCYB1JcDhFykcL-9TQqyKxz7TDGxE/edit

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1mFjjZr2E3q9WI0fQk9TOlGeMEiXGviNq7c4wG8__f_4/edit

I won’t demand that you go through the whole story, beginning to end. That’s your choice, and I respect that. You won’t promise me the moon. But, I can hope that I’ll keep your interest going for a while longer. Look through however many of these you feel comfortable with, debate with me, and otherwise do what you can.

If you decide you do want to go further, tell me and I’ll happily give you more to look at and dissect. If you don’t, or decide after one or two of the above chapters you’re done, I’ll only ask you to please tell me why you decided to stop. You won’t need to give a long essay, but at least tell me if it was something I did or if you simply can’t keep going. You continue being honest with me, that’s the only thing I’ll truly require of you, and I’ll keep being honest with you.

As always, I look forward to your critique.
>> No. 116776
File 134540878842.jpg - (259.54KB , 640x551 , rainbow_sad_by_kawaiipiepied3jbejq_display.jpg )
116776
hello everyone

so yesterday i wrote my first chapter EVER. im sorry if im doing anything wrong here on /fic/ i've read the sticky and and submission guide, but hell i dont understand a thing :S

as it is my first story, and english is not my native, i know its full of errors. i need a pre-reader to help me fix it, and it would make me very happy :D it would be awesome if the pre reader could support me for the rest of the fic, please mind that. i'm always online on skype and steam. email me if you're interested

currently the chapter is about 800 words.
http://www.fimfiction.net/chapter/143233
pass: yoghurt_is_very_yummy

quick description:
basicly i projected my own life into rainbow dash's.

she as the the element of loyalty is well.... very loyal to her friends, but as all of her friends are being more and more occupied and dont want to/cant spend time with her, how will rainbow dash deal with this?

i hope i informed everyone enough with this. like i said, the current chapter is about 800 words, but i think i can expend it with some help. especially the sugercube corner part where she spends her day. i also suck at applejacks accent. maybe cause im not a redneck american

Greetings,
Dutchy

in my first, misplaced, tread, someone asked me where im from. i am from the netherlands. seeing this is going to be a self introduction, lets go.

my name is erik, 18 years old. i recently left shool to go working. i found a job pretty quick at a book distribution center. yay books!

ahum, i've been amazed by the fanfics about mlp ever since i became a brony. i wanted to write one myself but never got up to something untill now.

i think thats pretty much it.

greetings,
Dutchy
>> No. 116777
File 134541009775.jpg - (144.04KB , 495x700 , Rainbow Dash9347__rainbow-dash_humanized_artist-moritoakira_androgynous.jpg )
116777
>>116776
I said I'd review this, and I will. So, claiming.
>> No. 116778
File 134541028168.jpg - (149.96KB , 500x375 , 1277783657_tes_iii_tribunal1.jpg )
116778
Human, crossover (Tribunal), adventure

A good 16 years before the return of Nightmare Moon, another fantastic event occurred in Canterlot. All it took was one human who discovered the secrets of ponies, a zealous guard that would do everything for his country and a Princess who only wanted the wellbeing of her people.

This here's the first chapter: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1QHyxEHjOQ0WLbhMNtXcbDNv-IDkBsIgpqxKILmptil0/edit

Just so we're clear, I posted a beta version some time ago under its working title "Sole Survivor." The story has been significantly overhauled and contains only negligible traces of the old.

You guys are my last hope to reach the divine bar of EqD. They won't even touch it, says it has "Generally poor description and awkward phrasings."
>> No. 116790
File 134541968879.png - (164.03KB , 1330x1556 , 133633494049.png )
116790
Okay, sorry for procrastinating. Every time I pick this up I manage to find some reason to put it down. This time it was TF2. That game is evil Here’s a sort of double review.

Anyway, your main problem is Show-don’t-tell. I would recommend finding a different narration style, because this one isn’t working for you. You’ve also managed to use Lavender Unicorn Syndrome in the most irritating way possible, and the second chapter has the same awkward phrasing problems as the first. I did what proofreading I could in the Doc, but other than that there’s not much else to say.

I recommend you take a lookat EZN’s guide if you haven’t already. These two sections specifically, but reading the rest of it certainly won’t hurt.
>Lavender Unicorn Syndrome: http://derpy.me/EznGuideLUS
>Show, don’t tell: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xemG7BLk2rvAmQCREIaj5wX2ubvmVt7WziEvh7xXV9g/edit#heading=h.cd61b05656b9

Also, Ravens sends his regards. We had a lovely chat in Doc.
>> No. 116791
File 134542025843.png - (39.44KB , 125x115 , 133884823007s.png )
116791
>>116790
Also, because your style errors remain consistent throughout the story, I don't think further review will help much. Unless there was a specific section you'd like me to give attention to, I'd like to drop this one.
>> No. 116793
File 134542218377.jpg - (8.63KB , 234x216 , 234892348-09.jpg )
116793
While I’m waiting for a response to my last post, I think I’ll claim this. >>115979
Yes I think you will be an enjoyable read. I never got to read you in the write off, so this will be fun.
>> No. 116794
File 134542264807.jpg - (249.93KB , 800x960 , Fluttershy12384__safe_rainbow-dash_fluttershy_humanized_angel_winged-humanization_angel-bunny_sk.jpg )
116794
>>116776
Review: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ei_g8wLp6uqQKElkN8BWfi96hZ91tgpoGK8erE6seq4/edit
>> No. 116795
File 134542414185.png - (145.10KB , 278x598 , 278px-FireRed_LeafGreen_Red.png )
116795
Since the Write-Off isn’t over for another few hours, I’ll make some attempt to obscure my identity, but the story’s already been knocked out in the qualifying round.

Tags: Slice-of-Life, Dark

Synopsis: I see the rain, the dead trees, ponies’ haunts-turned-husks. They left no bones.

Link:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/17TNVcZ-5D9Cjx2-pTRianeCxwqP30rsKhqAiITxL_lA/edit

A warning to reviewers, though: While I wouldn’t quite call the piece “Avant-Garde,” it certainly has a few l’art pour l’art flavor. For the most part, I need help on the style—characterization, imagery, etc. as well as suggested tags and improvements on the synopsis. If you can decipher the plot, comment on that as well. I would like to know if Raindrops is material suited for Equestria Daily.


To expedite the reviewing process, I will claim >>116778, “Soul Survivor,” posted 8/19, for review. I know nothing of the world crossed over, so I can comment on the accessibility; if that's not alright with you, you can request the maintainers drop my claim. If all goes to plan, you’ll have your review within the week.
>> No. 116797
>>116570
Review acknowledged.

I'll probably wait till the other guy reviewing this is done before I get started on anything major.
>> No. 116804
>>116736
Thanks for the review. Will definitely have a good look though the punctuation. Some of it I'll probably change, some I probably won't. Getting too anal about things is just a good way of making writing 'un-fun'.

>The Chancellor, however...
This is really meant to be a "Serious... seriously!" fic, and while having a loopy-de-loop leader of the earth ponies would be hilarious, it just wouldn't fit with what I intend to do. Having a shrewd, calculating quiet stallion does two things for me.
Having him a stallion helps say 'These are not the leaders from the play'. It's been a hell of a long time, and a lot of who they were can be lost. Plus, he was played by Pinkie... I'd be honestly surprised if she hit 1 word out of every 100 of the actual script.
Also, Pinkie's 'can't-think-past-this-second' attitude would put the earth ponies out of the war in a second. She'd never see it coming. The pegasi would swoop in and absorb them because they weren't prepared.
Just as Puddinghead isn't Pinkie, Platinum and Hurricane aren't going to be Rarity/Dash. But Puddinghead's changes will be the most obvious.

>Bear in mind, however, that not everyone will appreciate them, so be sure to leave highly important information out of there;
That's my intention. Giving additional info on the different soldiers/factions, or even explaining why everyone reacted so strongly to Hurricane's jab at Platinum. You know that what she said was a horrible thing to say, but there's nowhere in the story to say why. So I'll have snippets of books to help explain.

> punctuating dialogue
I hates them... I hates them bad! Dialog punctuation has been the bane of my writing existence, and I've just never been able to wrap my head around it properly. All these abstract rules and regulations.

>This story is engaging and intriguing, and I, for one, want to see where it goes and what you can do with it. This is, so far, a very good work. It is well thought out, well paced, and quite worth the time.
Good. This is my main concern at the moment is that I might have messed something up with the story. Punctuation, grammar, etc can all be easily fixed, but if somethings messed up with the story itself... that's a need to know from the start.
>> No. 116807
>>116777

thanks a lot, kind sir
>> No. 116808
File 134543447730.jpg - (97.09KB , 720x619 , Applejack on clopfics.jpg )
116808
This short fic is mainly for giggles. I didn't take it seriously when I wrote it so I don't expect anyone else too. I am still working on some other fics but I just wanted to get this one out of my system. If you laugh at it, then mission accomplished. If not I guess I will soon find out how to improve it.

Title: Who Knew?

Author: Digi

Tags: Comedy, Random

Synopsis: What started out as a friendly get together soon goes off the rails. It all starts when Applejack make a simple offhand statement. This draws the mane 6 to begin to discuss the most intimate of topics. Sex.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pG4yhJOxx2K_AEVX1KczqtXW_xVqgKcHLPDHivjXO9Y/edit
>> No. 116811
>>116808
ah, a comedy. I'll give this a look for you, Lord Digi, and post my thoughts forthwith!
>> No. 116825
File 134545968685.png - (350.62KB , 545x532 , Cover.png )
116825
Okay, I'm throwing this back in here because my last reviewer politely declined it due to its being a big, roomy crossover/HIE fic. I'd like to ask that anyone who take this on do it with that in mind. Your help is appreciated, but I'd much like a review from someone who knows their way around crossovers, HIE's and whatnot, simply because it gets better that way. For all parts involved. If there's any /fic/er that has actually read Eric Flint's 1632 series that it's crossover'd with, I'd very much like their opinion on it and my interpretation of the characters, regardless of review or not.
NOW:

AUTHOR: NejinOniwa
STORY: Regina Et Equi Nox
CHAPTERS: All (presently Prelude/0 to 4)
http://www.fimfiction.net/story/9782/Regina-et-Equi-Nox
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XcKTPTvH97oGoI8GGvFU3N5ihHN3WERdCyWOnWogd1A/edit

Tags: HIE, Crossover, Adventure, Dark (eventually at least)
Crossover with Eric Flint's 1632 series.

Synopsis:
In Equestria, shortly after the foiled changeling invasion, Princess Luna is having nightmares. Terrible nightmares that have been going on for weeks now, and won't let her sleep. Determined to get rid of this problem, she turns to her sister who comes up with some unorthodox methods of curing her.

On Earth, 1634, another princess (slightly more human and slightly younger) is having similar problems, and turns to - what else - an American psychiatrist. American, because human civilization was recently treated to a rare case of timewarping when a hillbilly town from 21st century West Virginia was dumped into the middle of Germany 3 years ago.

Needless to say, the nightmares aren't exactly unrelated, and a bunch of things start to go wrong - much as you would guess they would, when a crazy pony guided by a treacherous jötunn inside her head starts drawing the strings of space, time and dimensions where she pleases.
>> No. 116828
File 134546828903.png - (203.51KB , 314x435 , not quite sure scootaloo.png )
116828
Well after reading the prereader comments, I was somewhat afraid to read this second edition, more so in that my opinion would be colored than anything else, but I digress. I did read the original first and…

I have to say I agree with them. If the first time I read your story could be compared to Wily Coyote being tied to a railroad track, your second story would contain several crates of TNT, not to mention a three ton anvil hanging over his head and– Oh, look! There’s the Pendulum of Doom. What is the Pendulum of Doom doing there? I did not order it. It’s overkill, get rid of it!

Simply put, your second story is an example of too much detail. If you’ve read EZN’s guide, you might have seen the section on story pacing. What you’ve got here seems to model the second paragraph quite well. Your story was so bogged down with details that most of the jokes lost their luster, and while a few of the new jokes drew a chuckle, I hardly enjoyed it. It felt far too serious to be a comedy, and I will second the prereaders that your first edition would draw far more laughs. Lighten up on the details, and let the comedy flow on its own. Most jokes hit harder if they are left unexplained until the punchline anyway.

As it stands, I much prefer the original.
>> No. 116832
File 134547019825.jpg - (18.44KB , 300x300 , 564121_122146267929611_838835145_n.jpg )
116832
>>116367
Only chapters 5-7 eh? Okay. I usually enjoy a good long story, but the most recent ones I've read have been... tiresome. I'll see what I can find here. Claimed.
>> No. 116842
>>116807

Dutchy, your story has already been reviewed even though I don't see it in the queue. Because of that, here's the link to your review. Enjoy!

http://www.ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/114434+50.html#116790
>> No. 116857
Title: Prologue: Twilight and I

Author: ToastiestZombie

Tags: [Dark][Adventure][Tragedy]

Description: A dark tale of one pony's struggle to survive in an Equestria that's gone to hell. (Not finished description)

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1HUK6EICpnokbE2wptEzLw2KMPz8dd42_ul60DMBzFt0/edit

Other Things: Twilight and I is not the title of the whole fanfiction. I haven't decided on that yet. And, please go in knowing that this prologue is very near the end and the rest of the fic is telling how the main character gets to the point she is. This will be obvious when the first chapter is done, but right now it isn't. Also, I would like to request a reviewer who's good at prologues.
>> No. 116869
Tags : {adventure} {war} {romance}
Synopsis: The hearts warming eve play tells us how the ponies founded Equestria. What it fails to tell us is what happened to those who refused to live in harmony with the other kinds of ponies. About the ponies who stayed back in the old land and still fight to this day.
http://evedeevee.deviantart.com/#/d5bxbr2
>> No. 116874
>>116869
I think I can handle this. Claiming!
>> No. 116880
>>116828

Thanks for the review. I made the changes to the story because I wanted it to have less random things happening only for laughs. I feel the best comedies are the ones that can tell an enjoyable story at the same time. This fic just didn't turn out the way I imagined it would. It was a learning experience at least.
>> No. 116884
>>116808
despite all the comments in the doc, this actually wasn't bad. you bring out a great, playful dynamic in the group, and make effective use of the characters involved toward your purpose. I do want to bring your attention to a couple of points:

* careful with your tense. 'past' is probably preferable.

* make sure it is easy to follow who is saying what in your dialogue, especially when there are many participants in the conversation:

Rarities blush only deepened once more leaving her at a loss for words. Pinkie however was rolling on the floor in a fit of giggles. “I still don’t believe this,” Dash sighed putting a hoof to her face “You're one of the youngest here besides me and you got laid before all of us!”

here, it seems Rarity will be the one to speak; then, Pinkie Pie; but it's actually Rainbow Dash who gets the word in. think of it like 'blocking' in theater, where you have the entry, layout and exit of each character planned in advance for each scene; only, working in the written medium, you have to paint it out for the reader with detail and descriptive action:

Rarity was speechless. She blushed at her friend's candidness, and was chagrined by Pinkie Pie, who was rolling in an irreverent fit of laughter beside her.

"I still don't believe this," Dash put in over Pinkie's guffaws. "You're one of the youngest here besides me, and you got laid before all of us!"


* consider prosody when writing dialogue. this refers to the cadence or 'music' of speech (and will actually help you when you're trying to affect accents):

“What easy? Is that what you were gonna say?” Applejack glared daggers at the unicorn, “Ah will lhave ya know that any ol random stallion can just walk up ta me, say a few lines, and get me ta bed. Ah do have standards ya know.”

comma placement, hyphens, italices, and even sentence structure are your friends:

"...What? [i]Easy?" Applejack glared daggers at her. "...Ah will have you know that I don't just 'get ta bed' for any ol' stallion that walks up and says a few lines!" she growled. "Ah do have standards, ya know."[/i]

...otherwise, keep plugging away!
>> No. 116885
File 134550722138.jpg - (93.85KB , 825x825 , fluttershy_is_shy_by_mysticalpha-d4bjzwf.jpg )
116885
Um... I'd like to review "The Sound of Raindrops on Slate" (>>116795)... That is... if nopony minds?

It'll be my first run as a reviewer, so if the author in particular would prefer someone more experienced I'll relinquish it.
>> No. 116891
File 134551034454.jpg - (226.39KB , 1024x1024 , 1336705187441.jpg )
116891
>>116885
Gotta dip your toes in at some point. I'll be watching, and hopefully some more reviewers will as well
>> No. 116894
>>116884
Thanks for the review. Considering that I wrote the whole thing in roughly an hour or so, I am a bit surprised that there were not more errors. Glad that you enjoyed it at the very least. So long as I manage that, then I see it as a success. Also, I do have to thank a friend for a bit of help they added when I was cleaning it up a bit before you did the review. He did the aliases bit, I am terrible at thinking up names.
>> No. 116895
>>116191
A few things...

The PR comments you included appear to be the same ones as last time, so I assume you're just asking a reviewer to make sure they were addressed?

I'm game for claiming this, but be aware that my calendar is filled about 2 weeks in advance right now, so it might be a while.

Also note that checking things like grammar that are pretty black and white is one thing, but for impressions on story and character, it can be beneficial to get multiple opinions. I'll be happy to review it again if you like, but you might prefer having another set of eyes on it. Your call.