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117047 No. 117047
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; The sticky, which contains important information)

If you're a reviewer, old or new, and you want feedback on your review, please put a "*" at the front of the subject line of your review post. This is something new we're trying out.
For writers:
Submission guide | TL/DR of the submission guide | List of TTG regulars | Submission form | List of recently-finished reviews | Reviews in progress
For reviewers:
How to review | List of unclaimed requests
For Maintainers:
The full, current active queue | Statistics and queue-dump text for thread updates | A guide to how it's all organized
For live communication
IRC (live chat)
Some Notes:
  • Do jump in and participate if you can. New reviewers, editors and authors are always welcome!
  • No one is infallible. If something doesn't seem right, ask about it! Whether it be about a review you've received, a fanfic submitted, or something about the queue spreadsheet, the best way to solve it is through communication.
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  • Reviewers: the writers want their work to shine. Highlight faults with gusto. Don't fear compliments either: if something makes you smile, a few kind words won't ruin your review.
  • Writers: the reviewers love to read, but will often lean towards being critical. Don't allow it to discourage you; use their criticism to improve your writing! See "Receiving Critique: Gallant" in The Editor's Omnibus and the Submission Etiquette Guide.

Helpful Documentation

How to request to be a queue maintainer:
Note: you don't have to be a maintainer to help out reviewing in this thread. What maintainers do is update and maintain the queue spreadsheet. If you review in The Training Grounds on a regular basis, and would like to help out maintaining the queue:
  1. Read / bookmark this document
  2. Email Demetrius (deconstrained at gmail.com) and say something random in that email. Post the same thing (verbatim) in this thread, preferably identifying yourself with a tripcode.
  3. When you've been given editing permissions, you may delete your random post.
Unspoiler all text  • Expand all images  • Reveal spoilers
>> No. 117049
Unclaimed Stories
08/14/2012 ❖ Last Chance by The_Incredible_Blunderbolt (>>116191)
08/21/2012 ❖ Caveat Emptor: Let The Buyer Beware by Brony Z-Ro (>>116714)
08/20/2012 ❖ Prologue: Twilight and I by ToastiestZombie (>>116857)
08/20/2012 ❖ You'll Never Know Until You Try It by Anonymous (>>116921)
08/21/2012 ❖ The Solar Enigma by Lionheart07 (>>116989)
08/21/2012 ❖ Birthday Wish by Bronius Maximus (>>117032)
08/21/2012 ❖ Starlight, O' Starlight by Star Swift (>>117005)

Reviews Awaiting Acknowledgment
Friendship is Aura by KangTheSpartan (>>104728) submitted 05/31/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Still Waters on 08/05/2012 (>>114904)
Nightdreams and Daymares by Mareinthemoon (>>98882) submitted 07/03/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Minjask on 07/20/2012 (>>112391)
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)
Snake Tales P by OrckDorck (>>112662) submitted 07/22/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Minjask on 08/14/2012 (>>116096)
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)
Chain Of Memories by AlphaNova (>>113090) submitted 07/24/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Doseux on 07/30/2012 (>>114014)
A Leaky Roof by SterlingNomad (>>113837) submitted 07/29/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Minjask on 08/14/2012 (>>116115)
Hope in the Storm by Chrome Dash (>>114975) submitted 08/05/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Dublio on 08/13/2012 (>>115990)
A Bit of Riddles, A Riddle of Bits by Karach (>>115252) submitted 08/07/2012 ❖ Reviewed by morning_angles on 08/09/2012 (>>115515)
Applejack's Little Secret by Honored Service (>>115330) submitted 08/08/2012 ❖ Reviewed by MissInfinityness on 08/09/2012 (>>115493)
Little Fluttershop of Horrors by Erin Mills (>>115425) submitted 08/08/2012 ❖ Reviewed by theworstwriter on 08/10/2012 (>>115628)
Zecora's Guest by Sayhono (>>115724) submitted 08/11/2012 ❖ Reviewed by alexmagnet on 08/13/2012 (>>115894)
Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Hooves by alexmagnet (>>115738) submitted 08/11/2012 ❖ Reviewed by trelatyarelis on 08/15/2012 (>>116296)
The League by Za Raapini (>>116393) submitted 08/16/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Casca on 08/17/2012 (>>116721)
The Sound of Raindrops on Slate by Redanon (>>116795) submitted 08/19/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Huh? on 08/21/2012 (>>116997)

Reviews in Progress
AzuNyan: reviewing Nopony's Innocent by Eyeclops (>>110818) submitted 07/11/2012
NumberNine99: reviewing Mines of Equestria by LunarShadow (>>112645) submitted 07/22/2012
Pascoite: reviewing Fluttershy's Shadow: Chapter Two by Broken Logic (>>115127) submitted 08/06/2012
Paper_mate_Pony: reviewing The RED Cataclysm by Conchshellthegeek7 (>>115640) submitted 08/10/2012
Dromer: reviewing Into the Night by TheDamnedScribe (>>115811) submitted 08/12/2012
Dublio: reviewing Ponystar Celestia by InsufferableUnicorn (>>116323) submitted 08/15/2012
Minjask: reviewing Black Equinox by JDude (>>116367) submitted 08/15/2012
Seattle: reviewing Random Elementsq by Stryke (>>116659) submitted 08/18/2012
Doseux: reviewing Soul Survivor by JC Borch (>>116778) submitted 08/19/2012

Unclaimed: 7
Reviews awaiting acknowledgment: 17
Reviews In Progress: 9

Overall Statistics:
Total reviews since spreadsheet began its use: 996
Est. Total since founding: >1200
>> No. 117051
Since this is the Training Grounds for both writers and reviewers, I think we should probably have some kind of way to help reviewers who might be looking for help with reviewing--that is to say, reviewing reviews. Might I suggest those who want their reviews reviewed to mark their posts somehow, like the * in front of my subject line of this post?

I know reviewing reviews sounds like a moot exercise, but at the moment, there's not much in ways of helping reviewers improve when compared to ways of helping writers improve.
>> No. 117054
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I'd like in on this! If anypony has pointers regarding my review (>>116997), please let me know!
>> No. 117056
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>The League by Za Raapini (>>116393) submitted 08/16/2012 ❖ Reviewed by Casca on 08/17/2012 (>>116721)
Just a note, Za Raapini has acknowledged the review and can be cleared from the queue.

>Total reviews since spreadsheet began its use: 996
>pic related
You lot are awesome. <3
>> No. 117057
I just did a bit of math, and it seems like the Training Grounds gets about half all the stories which went to EqD and were rejected. So, in general, 50% of the people who get rejected come here. That's pretty impressive if you ask me.
>> No. 117059

Well damn, thanks! At once, I'm thrilled and ashamed.

Some people who read my fic complain that it's tiresome for a few reasons, and I was hoping I'd remedied that. Sounds like I might have.

As to native language, that's where the "shame" comes in. Born and raised American English, always considered something of a wordsmith by people who know me.

Some of the more glaring issues like "the Applejack" are probably from me fixing stuff like Lavender Unicorn Syndrome and not entirely deleting the previous bit. Other things might just be stuff I outright don't know to be erroneous, as I'm pretty much learning to write properly as I go. It's not my first time writing fanfiction, but it's the first time I've cared to write correctly.

Before, I wrote in a sort of script-style I bullshitted the whole way through. This fic has undergone so many revisions, it would be interesting to dig up the original draft of the first two chapters. I know my first review was so negative and loaded with vitriol it nearly made me give up entirely.
>> No. 117060
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Wha-Hey, new thread, whad'ya know? Blast it, the queue's growing again, I'd better finish this story I'm on real quick.
Finally, somepony else agrees with me; I've been pushing for something like this for a while now. You've got my support Filler.
I thought you did fine, better than mine anyway. I don't usually point out individual story elements, as much as I point out what felt funny or could be improved.
So, bucking close. I'll make that a thousand before long.
Well you've got a big vocabulary, I'll give you that. Too big almost. There were a few spots that looked like an amateur reaching for a thesaurus, but I guess it was just a big brain. *shrug* I'll fix 'er up for ya. It's the least I can do after that section about dealing with death in chapter two. That helped me more than you could ever know.
>> No. 117068
Let's get a good polished (and short) official version of this, and see if we canna get a mod to insert it in the OP. Seeing as it's both new and untested, I'm thinking just below the initial intro, above "For Writers".
>> No. 117071
Hey, can I ask you guys some advice on something?

I've recently decided to add a couple of romantic subplots to my story. They aren't the focus of the story (the story's fairly plot-driven), but they do move the plot forward in at least one case. Now I'm left wondering if I should add the Shipping tag to my story. The problem is, the story's already got Comedy, Crossover, Dark, Human and Tragedy to work with. THE GENRES, THEY'RE EVERYWHERE! THIS IS A BUG HUNT, MAN, A BUG HUNT! So... yeah. Should I add the tag?
>> No. 117074
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Well, this ought to be in the Story forge thread (>>106451), but if it fits your story, I don't see why not, although I've never seen tragedy and dark combined with comedy.
>> No. 117079
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Heh, thank you! I don't think I'd have gotten so detailed on my own, but the author asked and I tried to oblige. I'll try to be nice and specific in the future, too.
>> No. 117082
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>Comedy, Crossover, Dark, Human and Tragedy
>romance subplots
>add tag?
In a word, no.

Crossover and Human are more of an information thing than a genre. Dark and Tragedy are tones, and so is Comedy. Dark and Comedy are at odds, regardless of how many people use the combination of it in Fimfic (and personally it's a turn-off, too). You do not need a Shipping tag for romance subplots because it's not the focus of the story.

For instance, Harry Potter is fantasy. The closest tag we have, imo, is Adventure. HP wouldn't be labelled as shipping just because it has romance in it, nor Comedy just because it has occasionally funny moments. Twilight would be [Romance] because romance is what drives the story, regardless of how many action scenes or jokes it has in it (wouldn't know, never will).

I'd strongly advise taking a hard look at your tags and summarizing them. Decide what your story is supposed to be, and whatever fits your central focus the best, that's your tag. If you find that your central focus is so broad that it needs more than 2 tags, well, you need to focus closer then.

[Adventure] is usually the best blanket tag, followed by [Normal]. Stories with these can and probably should have funny, dark and romantic moments without the need for extra tags.
>> No. 117085
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>Scrunch Edition
>Posted on my birthday
>Best birthday ever <3
>> No. 117087
Tag: {adventure}

chapter 1: http://evedeevee.deviantart.com/#/d5bxbr2
chapter 2: http://evedeevee.deviantart.com/#/d5c4t58

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.

Request: I would like the second chapter to be reviewed please :)
>> No. 117090
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Hn. This is goods informations fors my own fives-tag beast.

Will waits to hear froms reviewers before decidings which tags to drops, though.
>> No. 117091
You missed adding ReEN to the queue, guys.
>> No. 117094

Here you go, buddy.

>> No. 117101
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Well now I'm feeling not unlike a guy who has just gone ten rounds with Tyson along with a fair chunk of Ralph Wiggum ("Me fail English? That's unpossible!")

I'm glad you enjoyed doing the review and I really appreciate all your help and constructive criticism, even if seriously bloody hell this is going to be an absolute nightmare to fix now.

A couple of responses to some of your notes.

>While this isn’t a direct issue, know that “C’s sun/L’s moon” is a heavily over-played thing, and as such, it’s stylistically frowned upon as amateurish.

Fair point and will change it.

>However(,) just because // She blinked a few times(,) attempting to focus
>appositive (where you add information outside the main content-flow of the sentence)
Amongst all this(,) and ignored by most of the other ponies doing business in the centre of the town(,) there was a unicorn

Head meets keyboard repeatedly here, I must admit some of these were removed in editing due to trying to avoid comma splices after the ED response. Ergo I'm an idiot.

>See that? Beautiful, smooth. Thus is the glory of the Em Dash. Note also how it allows you to avoid so many commas it looks like you took a comma shotgun to the thing.

A fantastically handy tip, thank you.

>The story’s in the details when it comes to this stuff mate.

Another one that I agree is a massive stonking issue and alas probably going to be one of the hardest things for me to fix.

>Compound Hyphenation.

Yet another Head meets keyboard scenario as I thought the comment was that I'd done it too often and so removed a bunch...

>Conversely, you abuse the shit out of semicolons.

Yeah, that was an partial attempt to fix the comma splice issue. Ah well will revisit with fresh eyes armed with your advice.

>Memes. They are dead, trampled, cooked and recycled into flora food. Kill them all. Seriously.

Awww, I liked that bit :D

>Bloody brits. Don’t you know the z is zuperior?

Sodding colonials, s is fine and the u is awesome.

>You see how important comma placement is? One mistake will leave your reader scratching his head and considering what that last joint was laced with.

Ouch, can't believe I missed that one.

>Right, end chapter one. You’re issues are as serious as they are systemic, and the only solution is practice. Read a lot, and keep practicing. One of your strongest points is your characterization; rather, your work with the inversions. I found your rendition of Flutterbitch particularly amusing, I should note.
Anyhow, I do hope you’ve enjoyed this. I don’t get to loosen up an have fun doing reviews so much anymore, so thanks for that.
Cheers mate, keep writing.

Thanks once more for the sterling review and also the encouragement which is definitely appreciated.

One thing I'm wondering about is that I'm aware a major problem from my end is that I wrote chapter 1 last year, while the other chapters I've only written in the last month or so. Would you mind having a look at the rest of the fic if you have the time? I'm not expecting the same line by line dissection, just a rough feel of whether it's a bit better, it's on par, or good lord it's even worse, how can this be?!
>> No. 117105
Wow. Thanks for the review; 'twas quite helpful. I'll post my replies to the points you brought up when I can.
>> No. 117106
Thanks, mate.
>> No. 117116
I'll take a look at this one. Since it isn't on google docs, I won't do a grammar edit.

I'll give you my overall impression of what you've got so far.
>> No. 117119
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>>117047 Ho boy, I think this review may actually exceed the word count of the story. You've got quite a bit of work to do on this one. Let's start with the synopsis.

>It's Nightmare Night, and all is well. Except for a small Pegasus pony, who has mysteriously appeared in the Everfree Forest, bringing with her a secret that will change the lives of the six friends in Ponyville.

Okay, for starters, it's just not very interesting, The idea of a mysterious OC appearing in the woods is about as played out as starting a fic with 'It was a dark and stormy night.'
My first bit of advice to you is to get an editor to look over your work. There's a group on FIMFIC specifically for that kind of thing, I'd suggest you look them up. most would be more than willing to help you catch mistakes and things of that nature.

Okay, on to the review.

>Cold. So cold. Dark. Wet. Shivering. Helpless.
You are not William Shatner (as far as I know). Use complete sentences. Also, if this is a character's thoughts, it should be italicized. All thoughts should be done this way.

>The small pony looked around at the ground where she lay, covered in dew and mud, exhausted and softly crying.

Break this up into two sentences, As I read, I noticed you tended to use commas to make really long sentences, when shorter ones would not only flow better, but not seem like a laundry list of things you were trying to describe in one go. Less is more, in this case.

Way too many ellipses(...). Three periods, and only three periods. Every time. Also, keep a space between the word and the ellipses.

>Only sounds of echoing bleakness returned her faint call.
Use darkness here. Bleakness just doesn't fit right.

>sickeningly soft ground
Sickeningly soft? How can something be sickening soft, exactly? Maybe if she was talking about something that wasn't ordinarily soft, but mud is generally very soft.

>The small pony shivered and cowered away from their reaching limbs, and started to gallop as fast as she could, not knowing where she was going, and not caring, as long as it was away from there.

This is all one sentence. That is not cool, break it up with some periods.

>spraying the grass with the sticky dew that night brings on.
We know the ground has dew, you told us earlier, no need to remind us. Also, no need to mention where the dew came from.

> hanging vines which stretched down into the swamp from some unknown height.
Hanging vines is enough of a descriptor, we don't need to know they hung from an 'unknown height'.

>the dark, wet forest
I thought she was in a swamp?

>desperate hope
Desperate attempt?

>a thought sprang into her mind. Her wings!
Not too bright is she? Also that period should be a semicolon.

>she could no longer see it, yet it still remained in her vision.
Wat. How is that even...?

>Shaking her head, she saw a faint glow coming from off to her left, a glow that reached up from the horizon, and she felt that she might be safe there. Veering towards the glow, she strained her wings until they beat faster and faster. The wind violently tore at her mane, her eyes started to feel raw, but she did not slow her speed. Crossing a river, a forest grew underneath her until it swallowed the ground, rushing up to meet her so quickly she almost was consumed by its tickling branches. She swerved upward and shot towards the moon, the air thinning around her. She looked around for the glow, spied it, and angled towards the ground in its direction.
This entire paragraph is confusing. I'm not even sure what you're trying to describe here.

>Nothing else entered her head, ‘cept for the light on the horizon.
Do NOT abbreviate words when using third person narration.

>cocooning her in small spider’s legs of moonlight.
What even is this?

Stop right here. I've got a few issues. Firstly, if you're going to use onomatopoeia, italicize it, and spell it correctly. Secondly, did your OC just do a sonic rainboom? If so, we're going to have serious Mary Sue problems. Nopony besides RD does sonic rainbooms. As a general rule, ans OC should not be equal or better than any of the main characters at the thing said main characters are good at. For example, no OC should be smarter than Twilight, better at applebucking than AJ, better with animals than fluttershy. See what I'm getting at? That isn't to say it can't be done, but it takes near flawless execution for an OC to posses those qualities and not be immediately written off as another self-insert mary sue.

>A shockwave flew from her body, tearing leaves from the trees and ripping dirt from the ground.
You did. *sigh* this is unnacceptabru.

One exclamation mark, lose the caps.

again, one punctuation mark per sentence.

Use italics. All caps is only for shouting.

See above


this is the last one I'm going to highlight, but if you have a word in all caps, take it out of all caps and put it in italics if you mean to have emphasis on the word.

>*knock knock*
axe this.

>“Thank you gals f’r bein’ my friends. Ev’ry Nightmare Night with y’all makes me a little not so scared, anymore.” Applejack proudly said to the little group.

I am offended by this as both a southerner, and a brony. Applejack's dialogue should be limited to (at most) using 'Ah' in place of 'I' or dropping the 'g' from words ending in 'g'.
"Writin' my dialogue ain't that hard, sugarcube!"
Also that is blatantly out of character for AJ. she would never utter the word 'scared' when referring to herself.

>Pinkie tackled Applejack and the pair rolled on the ground for a little while, tussling in the dirt.
This is random, and OOC for Pinkie.

Okay, now let's give you a breakdown by category:

Not good. The main 6 only had a few lines, but in those lines they were awkward, stilted, and just not themselves. Applejack especially. As for your OC, we know virtually nothing about her (not even what she looks like) except that she was lost in the woods and can apparently perform sonic rainbooms.

Plot: Not enough of a story to tell where you were gonna take this, but I can tell you that the general idea of an OC with a life changing secret for the mane six is quite stale.

Grammar and technical writing: Get an editor for this type of thing. There are simple rule for fiction writing that you may simply not know, and can research if you like. But a good editor can be invaluable.

Overall: 4/10
From the looks of it, this is your first fic. Don't get discouraged by my low score, everyone has to start somewhere so don't be embarrassed. What I would suggest to you is to find authors known for their good writing styles, (published authors or fanfic authors) and read their work. Look how they write, the rules they follow, the way they form and punctuate dialogue. You can learn by just reading good works of fiction. Most importantly, if you want to improve, you have to keep writing. Don't let a bad review or a hate comment discourage you, because practice is the only way to improve.

I hope some of this helped you!
>> No. 117124

I'm going to drop this story as I have to take a leave of absence for a while. It wouldn't be right to make you wait longer than I already have. I'm sorry about this. =(
>> No. 117130
File 134569020518.gif - (3.36MB , 1083x619 , Vinyl gasp.gif )
I think Edna Mode, from Pixar’s “The Incredibles”, put it best: No capes. NO BUCKING CAPES! That said…

Dammit, this is, just fucking perfect! You’ve got all the elements of an epic story; you follow the perfect curve for pacing, and suspense, and action, rising and falling in perfect time; you’ve got the characterizations absolutely perfect; your jokes were perfect and perfectly timed. You’ve added humor action, horror, suspense, everything in perfect dosage and timing; I have nothing but compliments for this story. You even nearly made me cry. ME! I know you don’t know me, but I never cry. Okay I’ve legitimately cried about twice in my life, but you damn near drew a tear with that ending, and that’s saying a lot.

I cannot express how proud I am to have had the opportunity to work on this. Throughout the last six hours total that I spent on this, I found only small grammar mistakes, most often in the form of a confused tense or awkward phrasing. Not once did I find a single punctuation error. Suffice it all to say: you have the perfect story here.

I must ask: Are you a fan of Naruto? Your writing style matches almost perfectly with that of the great Masashi Kishimoto, and your whole “Mandeville is crazy” scheme, matches almost perfectly with the Nagato/Pain story arc.

If EQD still gave six-star ratings, I would be willing to bet beyond a shadow of a doubt, that this beautiful masterpiece right here would qualify. I could not be happier that I claimed this. Bravo author, I say bravo! Take a bow, you’ve earned it.

>pic because I didn’t have a Scoots pic or gif worthy of this review.
>> No. 117134
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Well if you're dropping it, I guess I'll pick it up. It's next in the queue after all and I was interested when it first posted.

I'll be taking a quick breather after that last story I just went through, but rest assured I'll have it done in the next day or two.
>> No. 117143
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Thank you, Minjask. When Dublio PM'ed me to let me know he was dropping, he suggested you might take it; I'm glad he was right.

Fair warning, though: after Black Equinox you're going to be disappointed by my fic.
>> No. 117144
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Title: Beautiful Freak
Name: Damocles23
Email: [email protected]
Tags: [shipping][sad]
Synopsis: 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.
The fic wasn’t submitted to Equestria Daily. I would like to have all the chapters reviewed. Thank you.
>> No. 117147
How's this?

If you're a reviewer, old or new, and you want feedback on your review, please put a * at the front of the subject line of your review post. This is something new we're trying out.
>> No. 117150

Got rid of most of the comments. I left most of them in there for reference even after I dealt with them.
Sorry it's so long in general, though. I can imagine how bored of it you must be by now.
>> No. 117151
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>> No. 117157
Quick Question, if it has been a while since you've posted your story and it hasn't been claimed can you post it again or make a post giving it some attention?
>> No. 117160
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Nobody's stopping you, but it's not really encouraged, seeing as: 1) it makes you sound impatient, unless you really have waited long (and by long, some people have waited for a month in the past) and 2) it gives the idea that we're working for you, which in turn implies obligation. We're not. It's all volunteering in here, and free time is not the most readily available resource.

Also, 3 days? Son, that isn't long. = If it's just 800-something words, I'm sure someone'll be around to pick it up soon. Also next person to post a review gets 1000th documented review in TTG history, so there's that.

Your review seemed fine. The points you raised weren't critically wrong, although I haven't read the story: all I got was something about poetry and a banjo-playing human which personally I might have lampooned a lot harder if it were irrelevant, felt like he was put in there for the sake of having a human in there, or just deux ex machina-ish so as to shatter suspension of disbelief, but I have zero context, so ehh.
>> No. 117161
It depends from how long it's been sitting there. If it's been there for two weeks, feel free to re-submit it. Apparently your story has been submitted on the 20th, so I'd say no.
>> No. 117162
OK, I'll wait for another week or so. If it hasn't been done by then I'll think of a resubmission. I'll probably have done the first chapter by then too.
>> No. 117163
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I generally pick from the top of the queue, so if nopony else picks it up it'll land on me before long, don't worry, and just have patience.

Eh, don't sweat it. One amazing story isn't going to ruin a different one for me, your story will still speak for itself. Let's just hope it has a good voice.
>> No. 117168
Title: Twilight's Odyssey

Tags: Alternate Universe, Adventure, Slice of Life

Synopsis: In an Equestria where Discord never was, and the Pony Princesses never came to power, a young Twilight Sparkle loses her family in a crowd during the Summer Sun Celebration. Little does she know that her very existence is about to set a series of events into motion that won't just take her further beyond the borders of Equestria than anypony before her, but will also change the fates of both the nation and her life, forever.

Notes: Unpublished story, still a WIP.

Prologue link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1k-G6jVAnXu5NBSNvZavj7AqB2pKHRdmndPwvK3DFDpg/edit

Chapter 1 link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Om_2m0nn2h7ZcucS6bIg2JqZTHJVA-Hamg9PMg_JqWc/edit
>> No. 117170
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Thank you. I'd normally have gone berserk at "Random Banjo Man," but this fic was... different.

I rather feel like I was in over my forelock, but I'm glad my review wasn't an epic failure.

Here's hoping...
>> No. 117172
File 134573339035.png - (1.10MB , 563x1313 , pcb_ponies.png )

*throws confetti and cookies everywhere at everyone*

I couldn't find an Embodiment of Scarlet Devil ponies one, so PCB will have to do. Ah, Touhou - proof that overpowered characters are not Mary Sues as long as everyone else is equally overpowered. Oh, and Law of Moe.


Anyhow, WB (give me a short form of your handle for future reference, wouldja?), I've gone on and looked at some and a bit. I couldn't help but mark out a lot of things in chapter 2, so here you go - have the initial part of your line-by-line review in greentext, which is surprisingly fitting for the occasion.

Probably should remember to mention this in future reviews: for me, the connotations words have due to commonly-used context matters quite a bit. I like to call these connotations "flavours". The reason why I'm mentioning this is because you're probably going to see me mention "flavours" a few times when I examine your word choice.

>A thought sent her whisking in a direction
What kind of thought? This is too vague

>It’s not like
Tense consistency. "It wasn't like"

>But what was there really to do in here?
Make it into a statement; too many questions like these break immersion, and you don't need that sort of breaking to happen so early into your chapter.

>Of course that
Implies that it should happen, which, well, it shouldn't, not necessarily I mean. Delete "of course"

>bidding her to come closer
>always trying to keep the whisper growing louder and louder
so much wasted opportunity for sensual details. See, this is a dream scene. Make it dreamy and surreal. Ever been awake hours after you should've gone to sleep? That's when the mind starting slipping and you sense things much differently. It's almost the same in a dream. Anyone who tells you that a vague dream scene is a good dream scene doesn't know any better lol generalization. Dreams are where the impossible can happen. Don't waste this potential; shape it up and appeal to your reader's senses.

Also, that second phrase is awkward. The word choice isn't something that would occur naturally in the use of language. I'd put a finger on the combination of the absolute-flavoured "always", the indefinite-sounding "trying", and that unnecessary repetition.

>“I know who I am.
Attach to previous sentence

> it replied, sounding remarkably similar to her. At least with distortions that made it sound like several variations of her were all talking at the same time. There was an angry shout, a sad wail, a nervous whimper, and so many other such variations of tone and volume that it was hard to separate all of them out.
Your second sentence makes it hard to visualize this because it's so hard to digest in terms of meaning. We're stuck chewing on this when the clearer description is in the third sentence. By the time we move on we've tired of the effort of trying to figure out the nature of the voice, and your third sentence is wasted. Rephrase and merge the two so that we get a good description of this voice straight up. Also, first sentence is tell - exploit the opportunity to present Twilight's reaction to the situation rather than just the situation itself, because anyone can imagine up their own surreal situations.

>sat down,
You can't sit down while you're floating on account of having nothing to sit down on.

>“Well, let it never be said I failed to deliver
But it never said it wanted to deliver anything in the first place. Good if not cliche-sounding line, wrong place to use it.

>and, before
Remove the and and start a new sentence.

>Twilight stood in t
Consider "found herself standing"

>were here
Consider "there"

>an unrolled scroll
Consider "open"

> joyous monotone
Bit of a contradiction there in terms of flavour. Consider "unity"

>All hail, mistress of the mystic. May her wisdom be unquestioned, her power unchallenged, and her talent unrivaled. All hail, the mage supreme.”
Could do with some exclamation marks in there.

>overall for the scene before the line break
Do you see what's missing? Sensory details and emotion. It's all just action and scenery.

Now, you have two options. I've been trying to get you to inject a closer POV to Twilight, partly because I know it works for me. The first option is to add more sensory details and inner thought to push the thrill and kick she's getting out of this. The second option is to leave it as it is and hope that your reader can fill in the blanks. The fact that I'm considering the second option to be a potential one shows that you're doing something right here; I feel that it could be better, though. I'm just not sure whether adding sensory details (which is not telling, mind you - it's just showing more clearly so that the reader doesn't have to make as big a leap in deduction to guess at Twilight's feelings) is the way to go about it. Consider the style of your chapter 1 and see which meshes better.

Also, one more page down, and the lack of guilt regarding indulging in self-glorification above her teacher is... disturbing.

>That was odd, she didn’t usually sleep in this late
Get rid of that "That was odd" or convert into direct thought

> turned to her little dragon assistant
Too many words for the little it contributes to the scene, not to mention the potential nitpicks one can have when it comes to calling Spike Spike vs. his title, his race and everything else that isn't his name or "him". "stifled a yawn" is fine on its own. Delete

>” he said and she
he said, and

>Bringing a select few up to her room she closed the door carefully behind her. But, the instant it was shut, she tore into the knowledge voraciously.
room, she

The contrast isn't significant enough to warrant the use of "but". Delete it

>like those before, they werebefore. They

If she was inspired by the dream to go and look it up, hint at it a bit more than this.

>What could he have meant? Would it give a clue as to who he was, or where he’d come from?
The more you push this, the more it seems like you're egging the reader on to discover the Fantastic Enigma That Is Knight, complete with sparklers. That's not how you induce intrigue.

Also, all of this curiosity needs foreshadowing. Twilight seemed perfectly happy to leave him be as is in the last chapter. You're going to have to hint a lot more at her being bothered enough to spend precious time playing with her friends working doing what ponies do looking stuff about him up. Probably using the dream as an irritant that stirs her up would be good

>About three or five books in she found one of the spells which, as she’d suspected, had been a healing. The mist was useful for dealing with internal damage, as it could flow and absorb much better than simpler spells that used energy and light. It was less invasive too, using a subtler nature to encourage the body to heal itself rather than using force that could have negative consequences if you weren’t careful. It wasn’t great for dealing with critical wounds but scratches, or blown out eardrums, were well within its ability to handle.
Mackerel on a stick with mustard, that is one pointless infodump. Fascinating, yes, hmm, but what does this have to do with the story at all? Sure, Twilight cares about it, but we don't - at least, not in that much detail.

...books in, she

...been a healing - healing what? To put it in programming terms, word "spell" was expected, but found character ".". Some conventions you follow because not following them results in immersion breaking.

In fact a better thing to spend your words on would be a close-up look at how exactly Twilight gets about looking these up. Y'know, more of Twilight's actions showing how Twilight matters in this story, rather than Twilight seeing things that she has no consequence on.

>Another couple books later, she found the other one. It was called Resonics: the power of sound, the user adjusting the pitch of their voice and amplifying it with magic. Using the natural resonance of the object they were trying to affect meant it was a magic that could be devastating, crumbling buildings and causing severe bodily damage, if it was utilized properly. Also, due to its nonphysical nature, it could be particularly effective against spirits and the extremely resilient. It didn’t matter how big or strong you were, or even if you had good hearing: a master of Resonics could drop you.
Refer to above, and Skyrim did it much cooler. And I'm totally not saying that because my current project is a Skyrim fanfic, oh no.

>The final question was trickier to answer.
See, the question wasn't even stated. Phrasing like this throws your reader off. Were you talking about the rhetoric questions just above the infodump? Because I took those to be rhetoric, and once I've read them, I promptly move on. Your spell information certainly doesn't answer either of the three questions, so I assumed those questions to be unimportant, and really, they aren't - not the way you plan to answer them (via Twilight reading about it) anyways.

No numbers in writing, werds only

>Some ponies say there is a pair of great gates deep within the reaches of space and time, protected by a mysterious guardian. One gate is said to be formed of glass with iron struts: this is new beginnings, which signifies the spirit’s part in the birth of each new generation. The other gate is supposedly formed of iron with glass struts and this gate leads to the underworld, the place where everything ends. Many cultures speak of this guardian in whispered tones, for fear of it overhearing and arriving too early for either of its duties. Names have included The Reaper, The First-Breath, The Unknowable One, The Walker, and Eternus (A name which supposedly translates to “Eternal One” [citation needed]). A powerful and unpredictable force, it is unwise to incur the attention of this ancient guardian. It is also an unforgivable and treasonous crime to attempt summoning it by order of Princess Celestia herself. You have been forewarned.
You so silly.

See, would I read through all of that? No, not really. Why? 'cos it's quite literally a passage of data from some crusty old book. Even my math lecture notes are more engaging, although that's because they have practical purpose, I get to interact with them, and I kinda like figuring out math. Is there something important in there? Probably, but I wouldn't know - and I slowly come to the realization that I do not care. And the thread unravels and you have a problem.

Break it up. Interject it with direct thought that reveals character. Use sensory details. Present things that we as readers can appreciate on a deeper level instead of knowledge-deep, because that's not what fantasy is for. Paint a picture, not write a book (lol zen).

>Could the stranger be Eternus?
>No, that didn’t make sense. Something this powerful wouldn’t be out of breath and almost collapsing from just six Windigos. He wouldn’t have chased them away, he’d have annihilated them on the spot. Also, why would a creature of life and afterlife visit Ponyville anyways?
Indirect glorifying is still glorifying. Also, the word guardian implies that they're supposed to guard. A guard that isn't around to guard is a useless one. I don't think Twilight would jump to "the stranger is Eternus" - "what if Eternus was there?" when the closer scenario in logic is "Eternus should be at the gates, not out here".

>looking at every book
looking through

>most everything
contradictory since one is absolute and the other exists precisely to mean a non-absolute majority

And another infodump, which also went to show just how powerful Knight is, oh my.

>it was certainly good to note
"good" - I wouldn't use that word when everything about Eternus screams bad news, and it's disconcerting when it tries to pass off as Twilight's opinion.

>but Twilight was nearing the end of the line
Didn't you say that she spent the whole of the afternoon looking through everything - implying that she's already exhausted every book?

And that's the line-by-line for... 3 pages. Well. I'll be reading the rest of chapter 2 normally. Probably would be a good idea to enable comments for chapters 3 and 4 just in case, though we'll see how I go with assignments and related jazz.

The biggest problem I have with your opener for chapter 2 is that it struck me as not engaging. My instinct is telling me to put the blame on lack of sensory details and main character actions with impact - because Twilight does nothing of value, simply floating and firing some spark into the air. And that gives the idea that we're not really reading something important. The only things of note in the first 3 pages are the bits about magic, which, for reasons stated above, are mostly futile. Did Harry Potter go into the workings of Expelliarmus? All we know is that it hits you, you lose your wand and you experience a powerful force - but that's good enough because the sensation of being hit by one appeals to our senses and sticks, whereas thaumatical theory probably doesn't (and I'm guilty of using it in my own works, albeit sparingly and with lampshading). Words have that power. Utilize that power to tell your story.

I'll get to the rest of chapter 2 in a couple of days.
>> No. 117176
>>117161 >>117162
No. Resubmitting is an awful idea. Not only does it cause extra work for the maintainers, since there's no automated way for the user to remove himself from the queue, but it also makes it look like you haven't been waiting as long, so it resets your clock. The only possible benefit is that you might get a quick claim from one of the opportunists who always pick from the newest couple of submissions. A few days' wait is nothing. Some people have waited a month or more.
>> No. 117189
Much appreciated. Thanks!
>> No. 117193
On a different note, when does the queue update? By every new thread, or how does it go? Seeing as my story hasn't been queued yet.
>> No. 117196

Let’s get to it.


>What kind of thought? This is too vague

Well, the thought of moving (or flying as the case is here) in a direction. The rest of that sentence goes as such:

>... , straight up in this case, so she experimented freely with her new playground.

That sounded fine to me, but I guess some more info wouldn’t hurt. Probably needs some work on arrangement too.

Also, yes, I suppose I could play with the dream scene a little more. A few more crucial details can be used, and that thought of something in the dream provoking her to look up things in the library is a much better strategy.

My original thought was just an interest in the strange reference to Eternus, and the spells he used, from Chapter 1 just being interesting to her. It wasn’t suspicion, just that curiosity at something new and different. That wasn’t helped by the questions, so I’ll call my bad there.


>Also, one more page down, and the lack of guilt regarding indulging in self-glorification above her teacher is... disturbing.

To my understanding, why she has no guilt about the dream would be that, to her, it was just a dream. As for “self-glorification above her teacher”, one could argue she isn’t putting herself above Celestia. The fact that Celestia shows her respect was supposed to indicate just how far she’s come. I didn’t have her licking Twilight’s hooves, just a bow.

And, if you want to argue that a sun deity has no place bowing to a regular mortal, let us recall that this is her protege by her own choice to begin with. I don’t believe that that qualifies as being “one of the crowd”.


> Mackerel on a stick with mustard, that is one pointless infodump.

They had a point, but I guess I was slinging out too much too soon. I’ve always been fascinated by exploring the rules of fictional universes. Asking questions like: Why does this magic do what it does? What are the limitations? What are the uses? Can the rules be bent in some way? If so, how?

I was trying to build up some of the rules, and some of the universe, but I suppose that’s best given a little less... um, indepthness. Especially for things that don’t have an enormous impact on the story. So, I probably did get just a tad carried away there.

Why can I never seem to have the massive amounts of description where they’ll be liked?

Also, part of the purpose was to show that the spells weren’t godly ones. They were ones that, given some time and practice, Twilight could master herself. It’s not like Celestia raising the sun, needing a level of power beyond comprehension, just a matter of knowing where to look. That she hasn’t heard about them is simply a matter of need. After all, how often has she really used such aggressive magic? (Once, if I’m thinking right: the light beam in the finale of Season Two) And when has she ever used healing magic? (To my knowledge, never. Therefore, it’s unexplored territory.)

So, I’m establishing some rules for new magic. However, I’m also trying to make sure it would conform to my current understanding of this universe’s rules while making some of my own when I find an opportunity to expand on the lore some.


Part of the reason for the size of the Eternus section was to help point out how small the reference was itself. One whole paragraph, mentioning just his duties, with the one name amongst several others. Also, I am establishing this being right now because this won’t be the last we hear of them. Future episodes are going to have this Eternus popping up again.

As for how to chop it up, wouldn’t that be kind of shooting myself in the foot? You say I need to avoid breaking immersion, but having her read something and then interjecting with a thought or action would seem to draw us out of that, wouldn’t it?


I know you keep suggesting to use direct thoughts. The temptation is overwhelming, but I keep worrying that I’ll run into telling problems if I do, or that I’ll be tempted to use them too often. I’ve had telling problems in full force before, and the thought of wading through that quagmire again makes me want to put my head through a wall. Hence, I’ve tried to focus more on action, scene, and dialogue, avoiding telling as much as I could.

To these results.

Dang it.


For a short form of my name: WB would be perfectly fine.

For comments: I was working off how you requested comments disabled for the prologue and chapter 1, so as to focus on overall story. But, if you want me to, I have no qualms about turning them back on. Your judgement call.
>> No. 117199
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The unclaimed list, where your story ought to be, is auto-filled when you fill out the submission form. From there, the queue maintainers move it around the document. Your story seems to be there, however.
>> No. 117205
The queue update posts are done whenever we feel like it, which often only happens once or twice per thread. The real-time queue is in a GDocs spreadsheet (link near the top of the thread). Your story is there.
>> No. 117206
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>What kind of thought? This is too vague
>Well, the thought of moving (or flying as the case is here) in a direction. The rest of that sentence goes as such:
We don't know how the thought propels her. There's no description given to the nature of the thought. Things like cups don't need explanation, but things like these, where the reader has nothing to go on when they try to imagine it happening, need clearer description. "Concise" is what you're looking for - say, 2 to 3 sentences about her experimenting with different types of thoughts and their functions, show how it happens, and her developing so that the reader can follow her too. But usually no more than that. Probably.

>To my understanding, why she has no guilt about the dream would be that, to her, it was just a dream. As for “self-glorification above her teacher”, one could argue she isn’t putting herself above Celestia. The fact that Celestia shows her respect was supposed to indicate just how far she’s come. I didn’t have her licking Twilight’s hooves, just a bow.
>And, if you want to argue that a sun deity has no place bowing to a regular mortal, let us recall that this is her protege by her own choice to begin with. I don’t believe that that qualifies as being “one of the crowd”.
Mmmm, fair enough, although if I were to dream about my father serving me chocolate pudding on a golden platter, I'd spare at least some thought to it when I wake up. As is, it seems like the dream has no relation to the rest of what she does, so either you bridge the two divides or remove one.

>They had a point, but I guess I was slinging out too much too soon. I’ve always been fascinated by exploring the rules of fictional universes. Asking questions like: Why does this magic do what it does? What are the limitations? What are the uses? Can the rules be bent in some way? If so, how?
>I was trying to build up some of the rules, and some of the universe, but I suppose that’s best given a little less... um, indepthness. Especially for things that don’t have an enormous impact on the story. So, I probably did get just a tad carried away there.
>Why can I never seem to have the massive amounts of description where they’ll be liked?
The trick is in context. I have a bit of experience in this regard, so let me share: I wrote a little something that involved Derpy being the genius scientist in Discordian times, and how the two alicorns were engineered in a vat. I used quite a lot of magitech and magical theory in it. My readers apparently loved it, and I suppose the reason why is because: 1) the science was closely linked to Derpy's motivations/goals - engineer a solution - and 2) the science tied in with morals, ethics, and struggle, things that a reader can relate to on a deeper level. Also 3) it was tagged SciFi but that's not a get-off-free pass. Keep every word relevant, and its relevance has to be apparent, not "you'll need this later, how later, well you'll see for yourself winky face".

You have what reads like a standard fantasy adventure type. "Within and Without" by Cloudy Skies is an adventure and the only long ponyfic I've ever finished through (I don't read much, oh the irony). At first glance, your story is in the same style, tone and vein as that, and less like my own. Of course, WaW does have some fancy in depth magic later on. But that's only when the characters have been firmly established and their roles set in place. And that's as it should always be. So what you can include in what amounts vary depending on the foundation you've set. There's a mysterious stranger who saves the day in the previous chapter. That doesn't lead in very well to in-depth magic.

>Also, part of the purpose was to show that the spells weren’t godly ones. They were ones that, given some time and practice, Twilight could master herself. It’s not like Celestia raising the sun, needing a level of power beyond comprehension, just a matter of knowing where to look. That she hasn’t heard about them is simply a matter of need. After all, how often has she really used such aggressive magic? (Once, if I’m thinking right: the light beam in the finale of Season Two) And when has she ever used healing magic? (To my knowledge, never. Therefore, it’s unexplored territory.)
Then less theory and dry text and more practical. If you want to show that someone can do something, show that someone doing something. Not "This is one heckuva p'werful spell ya got here, mister". This is an issue of focus. As of how to execute that, well, as long as it isn't insane power-levelling like in Dragon Ball, you should be fine. But Twilight learning magic isn't the crux of the story, so you may want to draw that out as a subplot instead.

>Part of the reason for the size of the Eternus section was to help point out how small the reference was itself. One whole paragraph, mentioning just his duties, with the one name amongst several others. Also, I am establishing this being right now because this won’t be the last we hear of them. Future episodes are going to have this Eternus popping up again.
>As for how to chop it up, wouldn’t that be kind of shooting myself in the foot? You say I need to avoid breaking immersion, but having her read something and then interjecting with a thought or action would seem to draw us out of that, wouldn’t it?
It's in what to gloss over and what to bring out. Bringing out a chunk on some made-up place when your main character hasn't really done anything isn't the way to go. It's keeping the reader connected which brings immersion. Hence my apparent obsession with sensory details and relatable things because those work.

When you have a paragraph of data, you need to keep the reader connected, and I can't think of any other way except punctuating that data with something that keeps the reader with your text - direct thoughts and the ilk which connect the reader to another personality.

>I know you keep suggesting to use direct thoughts. The temptation is overwhelming, but I keep worrying that I’ll run into telling problems if I do, or that I’ll be tempted to use them too often. I’ve had telling problems in full force before, and the thought of wading through that quagmire again makes me want to put my head through a wall. Hence, I’ve tried to focus more on action, scene, and dialogue, avoiding telling as much as I could.
I know that feel. Moderation is key, and I'd say you're doing a decent job of not having to rely on it. It's just that when you phrase it so as to aim it out of the page, direct thoughts are preferred because then they're contained within the text.

>For comments: I was working off how you requested comments disabled for the prologue and chapter 1, so as to focus on overall story. But, if you want me to, I have no qualms about turning them back on. Your judgement call.
I didn't expect myself to be doing line-by-lines like these haha, nor can I say whether I'll have the luxury of doing so again. But turn them on for the other two chapters, just in case I get the urge to start. If I'm really starved for time I'll download a non-commentable copy and make notes instead.
>> No. 117209
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The RED Catyclysm by Conchshellthegeek7

I’ll level with you, and I’ve explained in the comments, I find the way you wrote this confusing. Its enjoyable, don’t get me wrong, plus there are areas of the story--pages Nine and Ten especially--where I really couldn’t find much to critique on. But the whole 3rd person 1st person dialogue/narration/prose conundrum was especially confusing, and led to distraction. So I’ll start with that, then move on to some other points, namely your info-dumps and the numerous tells.

[u]Voice/Point of View.[u]

This here’s a small extract from Kate Grenville’s ‘The Writing Book’

>Point of View is the voice a story speaks with, so it has to be the right voice for the right story.

The issue with your project happens to be your indecision on which point of view is right for your story. The first section is written quite clearly in 3rd person, that we can have no qualms over. It when we get into discord’s monologue/dialogue that it really becomes confusing. Take this paragraph:

>And on top of all that, it shouldn’t have been there. This was a New Mexico mountaintop, after all, not a Transylvanian one. Ha, I love looking at it. I’m gonna build myself one just like it one day. Anyway…

Without context, we have what appears to be some 1st person narration. “Ha, I love looking at it” and such. But we know, at least there’s no evidence to contrary, that Discord, the narrator, was not present. That is the big problem with what you’ve done. It’s being told by a character, in first person, who wasn't actually witnessing the proceedings. Grenville explains:

>An ‘I’ [First Person] Narrator needs to establish its authority for telling the story. Was the narrator there? If not, how does the narrator know so much? Is the narrator putting together evidence from somewhere else: What other people have said, letters found in attics, messages in a bottle? Or is the narrator just guessing?

This ‘authority’ of your character does not exist, and it doesn’t help that you switch between First and Third person grammar. What you need to do is make your mind up on how Discord knows of the proceedings. If this is part of some grand master plan, and He happens to be privy to everything as some omniscient consciousness, it may be best to re-write this section in first person, using the frequent asides as a means of fleshing out his chaotic character. Alternatively, you can keep using the pre-existing framework, and just ditch Discord’s commentary. This is the best advice I can give you so far, and if anyone else can do better, please [i]please[i] do point it out. I hate to force my meager knowledge on your work if a better opinion exists elsewhere.

[u]Info Dumps[u]

These are everywhere, a nasty side effect that has been produced by the aforementioned 1st person 3rd person conundrum.

Now, an infodump can sometimes be unavoidable, see numerous sci-fi and historical fiction novels. But here, I think that you could most definitely deal with them in a far more subtle fashion than having Discord menially discussing it with Helen. Take this part of the transcript:

>But then, in 1972, there was a, ahem, hostile takeover of both of those companies. So he, his old teammates and the old BLU Team were given a markedly marvelous mission mixing it up with masses of marauding mechanical mercenaries. I love alliteration. Then, of course, RED and BLU were taken over again by the spirits of their old owners, the mercenaries were re-hired, the Second Gravel Wars began, and everything went back to normal for the next eleven years. …Well, the robots didn’t leave, and the teams still have to team up every so often to fight them off, but besides that. I think I’m getting a little off-topic here.

Damn right you got a little off topic there. Now, you mentioned that you needed to add some exposition to encompass the growing lore of TF2. A paragraph tacked on as an afterthought is a pretty poor way to do it. I did say I was going to be flexible, but this is just hard to take in, and hard to take seriously. Try siphoning this paragraph into smaller, less obvious points and perhaps even dialogue. That way, you aren't lecturing the reader, you're including them into the story. As a bi-fandom crossover,you are already restricting yourself to a much smaller interest base. Try not to scare some of them away by re-explaining the plot that they know and love.

Just a side note, but as the reader is technically taking on the role of Helen, it seems a little strange explaining everything about TF2 to her of all people.

[u]Show vs Tell[u]

This is also a side effect of the previous points, but I think I can atleast give you some advice on how to fix it.

> “Remind me, Engineer, what’s the cue again?” he asked through his familiar German accent.

If you alter the dialogue to something along the lines of:

“... vat’s ze cue again?”, We get a pretty immediate sense that he happens to be German.

>“How many times did I already tell ya?” the Engineer sighed with a similarly heavy Southern drawl,

Same here with the accents. If you make it clear in the dialogue, as you did here, pointing out what the accent sounds like is unnecessary.

>To the casual listener, it would be complete muffled gibberish, but the RED Team had had sixteen years of experience translating it, so they were fully capable of understanding it. “Rrnjrrnrr? Hrrrlp, Rrrm shtrrrk,”

“Rrnjrrnrr? Hrrrlp, Rrrm shtrrrk” is pretty self explanatory. The other memebers of the team can understand him perfectly however, which will lead the reader to deduce that their relationship had been a long one. You don’t need to explain it.

>It’s like a little kid trapped in a grown-up’s body.

Thing is, you haven’t shown it doing anything immature. It seems quite grounded, actually.

>which of course made it sound like some kind of rasping abomination. (Which, to be fair, it was.)

By saying of course, you diminish the readers intelligence somewhat. The reader is at liberty to think what they want to think about how he sounds, and Its not up to you to tell the reader what breathing through a mask sounds like.

>Two white orbs, glinting with the faint light characteristic of the magical arts

Two white orbs appearing where eyes used to be is pretty indicative of trickery afoot. You needn’t explain this to your readers.

>By this point, everyone knew what their roles would be in the confrontation to come. As usual, the Engineer would play the good cop, the Medic would play the bad cop, and the Pyro would play the muscle

The last one I’ll go over, and its feels like a doosy. You're doing plenty of things wrong here. All those present may know what their roles are, but we don’t. The explanation only happens after the point is made, which probably doesn’t need to happen anyway. If you are making it clear that these team members happen to be well practised at evictions, than we can be fairly sure that they know what the other is doing. The fact that you distinguish their roles here, as opposed to leaving us to draw such conclusions from their shenanigans within the house, is text book definition ‘Tell’


I’ll be brief as this is a very subjective point, but, the accents all these characters speak with is [i]very[i] stereotypical in the game. Its part of the humor. But the accents here just aren’t comical, they aren't overdone to the same degree as the game has them as a standard. Its very debatable, and any third party with an opinion is free to express it, but I think you need to push the accents far more than you are now.

[u]Final Words[u]

Like I said in the beginning, I don’t mind this story. Its relaxing and panders to the Fandoms a bit. It’s a story that feels like you enjoyed writing it, something that just flew out of your head onto the computer. It leads to some serious drawback, as you can see above, but the thought counts for something. I wish thee well, Conch, I have enjoyed writing this review.

Yours faithfully

>> No. 117211
File 134578088211.jpg - (7.09KB , 227x222 , 368359824.jpg )
Hey, um, I'm curious, Are you going to be picking up Last Chance by The_Incredible_Blunderbolt? I keep skipping it because the author requested you, so I'm just curious.
>> No. 117214
I asked if he wanted to wait for me, and I haven't heard back, so I don't know.

If you want to give it a shot, I recommend you read my previous review.
I advised him to expand some of the back story significantly... and his word count increased by 5. So I don't know how much actually changed.
>> No. 117223
Good to know. Thanks, mates.
>> No. 117234

First and foremost... wow O_o

That's about the single most positive review I've ever been given for... anything. It kinda' made my day, if not moreso. Eustachian's take was pretty positive too, but nothing like using words like "masterpiece" or "perfect".

As to the "Incredibles" bit, I'd never really thought of that, haha. But yeah, too many tragic occurrences where capes are involved!

As to that, I'm surprised that scene came off as sad as you say. Sure, it was inherently sad, though I was more going for horror. I knew it would be too much to say that everyone in the group got out unscathed: these are real dangers they're up against after all.

I actually expected someone to tell me it was going too far, or that I'd pointlessly offed her after going to the trouble of bringing her back from the dead in the first place. I mean, it was always the plan, but I imagine a more critical person's interpretation and doubt myself, even with scenes I really want in the story.

As to the whole Naruto thing, I've watched the anime as far as that fight where that one "Ninja Info Cards" dude got his nerve-signals rearranged and somehow he figured out how to move his body well enough to keep fighting, and I think Naruto perfects his one blue-energy supermove he learns by playing with water balloons or something... I can't really say I'm trying to emulate anyone, not outright anyway. At any rate, I don't know those characters you're referring to. The only Nagato I know is Yuki from "Haruhi Suzumya."

And while Mandeville IS a little warped in his logic, he's still a thinking, feeling man who DID want what was best for the world. His main problem is he's a coward. I hope that much is obvious. Ultimately, it's one thing for him to FEEL people should suffer, it's another thing for him to experience it. The problem is, even if he felt like he should stop what he's doing and surrender before it's too late, he's not brave enough to take responsibility, not brave enough to take the fall for his own crimes. For him, the only way out is forward.

And of course, there were other things I worried about.

For instance, Corey. I was extremely worried he'd come across as a self-insert, and I tried what I could to diminish the voice of the author with him. Yeah, he comes in all the sudden to save the day, Rarity crushes on him a little bit (I fear Spike/Rarity shippers will string me up by my toes for that, and I almost don't blame them.) But I needed Corey as Yin to Mandeville's Yang. Someone to serve as the girls' anchor and window into the human world that isn't working to get them killed. Someone who could tell them how to counter Mandeville's tech. I wanted Corey and Mandeville to be a sort of statement on mankind itself.

You have Mandeville, a man who tried to save the world being vilified and cast out for his deeds, and finding a bitter, hateful monster within himself. And then you have Corey, a man so blinded with revenge that he willingly condemned an innocent man and brought doom to another world in the process. But in the meantime he sees his error and feels the weight of his actions, leading him on a course for the redemption of himself, and by extension, humanity. Essentially a role-reversal.

Then there was that bit with Twilight learning to fly. I thought people would say it happened too easily, and would make her rather overpowered. I'll admit, after seeing "Baby Cakes" I couldn't help but write it into the story. I just figured that if anypony could do it, it would be Twilight.

And of course... Pinkie's little song number. I hear a lot in comic reviews that having people READ a song is pointless and ineffectual, and ends up being awkward poetry. And it can be argued that given what happens only several lines after this bit, the tone of the story changes so immediately as a result it could give you whiplash. Still, I figured if Pinkie was going to saunter across a battlefield as everything in the damn world fails to scratch her, it would be even funnier if she sang a little tune while doing so... ABOUT doing so...

Anyway, I'm really glad you enjoyed it so much. I'll be working to address those comments now, either by fixing the issue or replying to your comment directly, so be ready to see those replies on GMail just in case.

Again man, you rock ;-)
>> No. 117235
File 134580238179.jpg - (22.93KB , 320x311 , Baron tea.jpg )
I haven't had internet these past few days. I don't know if this will even be read by the intended party.

My schedule is terrible.

Oh, yes, not opposed to the idea, just commenting that there will probably need to be an excuse for the character.

>Grammar = unfun
Yeah, grammar corrections can do that. I have this tiny editor in the back on my head who screams at me, so I just happen to notice silly things like that.

As mentioned (↑), I have no issue with the character, but there probably needs to be justification for the masses. If nothing else, I think that saying "Chancellor Puddinghead" is a title as opposed to a name would satiate most of them; likewise with the pegasi and unicorns. Still, your story, your call.

And don't forget: have fun!
>> No. 117237
File 134580303282.jpg - (9.44KB , 350x197 , SOUL_EATER_-_20_-_Large_24_6101.jpg )
If I'm right in thinking that no-one has claimed it yet, I'd like to claim >>116989: The Solar Enigma.

It looks like something I could sink my teeth into...
>> No. 117258
File 134581838022.png - (116.16KB , 610x542 , 4628_quizzical_scootaloo_by_moongazeponies-d3e5zo6_png-610x0.png )
You really didn't think it would come off as sad? You've got Trixie suddenly feeling bad about herself for stabbing Twilight in the back, to the point where she tries to kill herself, then she realizes she can help Twilight, and sees Corey as an opportunity to redeem herself. You put her through a large amount of character development, although appropriate for the level of stress they're put through, and then Twilight finally forgives her right at the end. Heck they were nearly friends, and now--through a tragic accident--she has to sacrifice herself to set them all free. Yeah, that's a tearjerker my friend.

Anyway, the Nagato/Pain story arc is about a boy who grew up in a small country pinioned between three larger countries who were constantly at war. His home had become the battleground for all of their fights, and his parents were killed when he was very young. Forced to grow up as an orphan, he found only two others like him, who became his two best friends. Eventually one of them stood up to the warlord causing most of the bloodshed, and ended up a martyr. Nagato then unlocked a hidden power he himself hadn't known about, and began to grow very powerful, when he was fully grown, he unleashed this ability on the world, destroying entire villages and cities, so that they too might know his pain. As a result he began calling himself Pain. Sound familiar?

As for the rest of that stuff, just use your personal judgment, it's served you well so far.
>> No. 117266
>It’s a story that feels like you enjoyed writing it, something that just flew out of your head onto the computer.
Yeah, pretty much! In all seriousness, though, this went better than I thought it would. Clearly, I've got some work to do here. Review acknowledged. Thanks for your help!
>> No. 117267
File 134581989032.png - (818.76KB , 894x893 , Octavia good_morning_octavia_by_johnjoseco-d49qmxf.png )
Review's in the doc.
>> No. 117274
Unfortunately, I must drop my claim on this story. Something has come up that will not allow me to get to reviewing it in a timely manner.
>> No. 117278
File 134582247647.png - (122.08KB , 701x497 , Prowling_Scootaloo.png )
Okay, let’s see what we’ve got here. It’s Fimfiction, so this will have to be a line by line review, and this is just the first chapter, as that tends to be introductory, so it requires a separate review on longer stories.

I was always a fan of FlutterMac, but you’ve done a good job writing this one, so I can’t complain.

>In a strange way, Fluttershy reminded Twilight Sparkle of Princess Celestia.
You don’t need to use her full name. It actually sounds kind of weird.

>she herself was generally a stay-at-home sort of pony. In fact, there had been many times when she’d gone to Fluttershy’s cottage intending to take her out for some social activity, only to spend the day there reading and tending to animals and having tea.
You could combine these with “, and in fact…”

Great job with Scoots’s wings, it fits the era, and as you know I’m a big Scootaloo fan.
I’m tempted to trot over to /art/ and ask for a drawing of that now.
Also, nice one on Apple Bloom. My head cannon has always been that she becomes a herbologist, since she hangs out near Zecora’s so often.

>He’d gotten up just before dawn as usual, but instead of performing his daily cardio routine Shining had gone down to the kitchen and whipped up a tall stack of strawberry-and-carrot pancakes.
There should be a comma after routine.

>he wore only the changeling-detecting anklet he’d received from Twilight Sparkle as a post-wedding present
Seeing as Twilight is his sister, he wouldn’t use her full name. Try just Twilight, or even “his sister”.

I do have one big problem with this chapter: If Cadence was secretly a changeling, why didn’t Shining Armor’s “changeling-detecting anklet” go off before, and why did it go off when it did?

After reading a few of the comments I see that this is a crossover. Therefore I must grade you on how well you explained the elements from the other source material: Quite well, there was little to no confusion on my part as to what the Ponystar airships were, and I don’t even know what this Battlestar Galactica even is. 9/10
>> No. 117285
File 134582551422.jpg - (37.06KB , 825x549 , 131683602022-TwiWidesmile.jpg )
>It’s Fimfiction, so this will have to be a line by line review, and this is just the first chapter, as that tends to be introductory, so it requires a separate review on longer stories.
Sorry about that; GDocs and I... don't get along.

>I was always a fan of FlutterMac, but you’ve done a good job writing this one, so I can’t complain.

>Full name formality.
Yeah, I was thinking something similar on my most recent re-read. I'll add that to my Edit List.

>You could combine these with “, and in fact…”
Ah, danke!

>Great job with Scoots’s wings, it fits the era, and as you know I’m a big Scootaloo fan.
Heh, I was hoping you'd approve.

>I’m tempted to trot over to /art/ and ask for a drawing of that now.
Srsly? Cool! Let me know if they deliver!

>There should be a comma after routine.
Hrm... I was trained to allow myself only one comma per sentence, unless it was split with something else such as a semicolon. I'll have to think on this one.

I know it seems like BS now, but it's a plot point for a section I've not yet written. My pre-reader strongly recommended that I not resubmit without the explanation, and I've taken that to heart.

>Crossover 9/10
Woot! That was one of the things I'd been most worried about. Glad to hear I've kept it accessable!
>> No. 117289
File 134582674022.jpg - (84.85KB , 612x612 , 0b150122d5ef11e1a2fe22000a1e8a58_7.jpg )
Thanks so much for what you did. I wholeheartedly appreciate it.
>> No. 117315
File 134584181317.jpg - (6.48KB , 491x400 , tumblr_m2chgpb5hc1r44ysg.jpg )
Title: Black Box

Name: Breath of Plagues

Email: [email protected]

Tags: [dark][adventure][sad]

Synopsis: Cutie Marks:Their appearance marks a very joyous occasion for the youth of Equestria, but not all cutie marks are innocent. Some unlucky foals develop much darker natured marks. These young ponies all soon disappear without a trace, never to be heard from again. They disappear to Black Box.


Comments/Request: The first draft was reviewed by Garnet, but since then the story has been extensively reworked and expanded. Also, I listed some concerns at the bottom that I'd like you to comment on.

The goal of this fic was to be an experiment targeted at self improvement.
>> No. 117324

Well argued.

Alright, those first two scenes are getting some boot in 'em. Also, comments will be enabled for chapters three and four.

As for commenting line-by-line and getting it done quickly, don't strain yourself too much. I'd rather a little extra time for a good review, than one slapped together because you'd think I'll bite otherwise. As I've said before, I know life can get hectic and this is a hobby, not your job. So please, enjoy your hobby. I'll get a better review from that.
>> No. 117331
Tags: [Crossover] [Grimdark] [Human in Equestria]

Synopsis: ODSTs are trained to handle any situation. Get any better, and they become spartans. However, no trooper is truly perfect. Garrett Archer gets more than what he bargained for after following an order to go back to Earth. He finds himself crashing in flames and waking up in Equestria, only to be introduced to more problems that add to the weight of the Human-Covenant war. Some see him as a monster, a friend, and the last piece of the puzzle.

Part 11: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bXM_aouRsc4ZP-e8LXaG13OBxRzINQOl1OOIlJa8Gs8/edit

Comments: I would like to have my review in-doc.
>> No. 117337
Synopsis: A unicorn called Terra Firma arrives in Ponyville around the same time as a natural disaster hits town. It soon becomes clear that he has a bone to pick with Twilight, even though she has no idea who he is.

Posted on Fimfiction:

Or as a google doc:

I know this story needs work, and hopefully I can get some good advice here. I sent this to EqD not really expecting to get in, but here's a quote from their reply: Unfortunately, your story did not pass initial grammar inspections due a number of systemic issues that need to be rectified and, as a result, cannot be sent to the pre-readers.
>> No. 117364
If my fics has been dropped by the pre-reader, could someone kindly put it back into the unclaimed list?
>> No. 117369
File 134590063435.jpg - (395.65KB , 773x1000 , Grant.jpg )

I'm going to try to broadly address some of the items that your pre-reader mentioned. In addition I'll touch on issues that stood out to me.

I'll be Honest: this will take a while. Go use the restroom and grab a snack.

Back? Good. Let's do this.

Awkward Phrasing
The core of your problem here is your word choice.

You seem to be allergic to simple words. You're seriously coming across as though you typed this with an open thesaurus in your lap.


You're not getting paid by the syllable, and it's not as though fancier words equate to "author cred". Stephen King has more copies sold than I have words written, and part of that is because he usually avoids twenty-bit words.

>Instead of relaxing in Canterlot sprawling out like a lackadaisical fool and stuffing his face with no care for manners, he was cutting through the sky on his way to Manehatten.
That doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. The primary culprit here is "lackadaisical". About half of your readers will have to reach for a thesaurus and the other half will wonder what was wrong with "lazy".

On top of that, you already mention that Soarin' wants to relax, so "sprawling out like a lackadaisical fool" comes off as redundant. You could cut everything between "relaxing" and "and" and not lose much.

>Upon arriving at work, only a few minutes late, Spitfire had yelled, spewing more than enough saliva to satisfy her namesake, and had made the entire team do drills.
Okay. First: while context implies that it was Soarin' who was late, the sentence as-written says it was Spitfire. Something has to change there.

Second: this is sort of a grammar note, but when you do an aside in a sentence--like this one--you should use an em dash rather than a comma. I can't show you what an em dash looks like because my phone hates me, but it's a hyphen's longer cousin.

Third: "spewing more than enough saliva to satisfy her namesake"?
A) What is her namesake, in the context of your fic? I ask because I doubt that it's a WWII fighter plane.
B) I can't help but picture the speech-impeded cartoon stars of yore--Sylvester the Cat and Daffy Duck, for instance--when I read this. If that's not your goal I'd change your phrasing.
C) Alternatively you could drop it altogether, as it makes a fairly long sentence into a behemoth.

>Celestia's sun
Unless Soarin' is a very religious pony, I'd drop that. It's something of a faux pas.

Also, your way of describing things clashes with your POV. On the one hoof it's clear that you're writing this as a third-pony limited perspective fic, with the "camera" following Soarin'. On the other, your almost-poetic descriptions seem wildly out of place for such a rough-around-the-edges stallion. Your narrative style would be a better fit for Rarity or Twilight Sparkle. Alternatively you could drop the "limited" and go with an omniscient narrator.

I'm not going to mention every instance of awkward phrasing, but trust me: there are more.

I'm not an expert on pacing
>implying I'm an expert on anything, lol
But your descriptions are a bit too detailed in your action scenes, which slows things down.

Wow. Everypony comes off as a dick. Okay, not everypony. Scootaloo is more-or-less herself, and Bon Bon is--how shall we say--unsubtle in her desires.

I could see it being a reflection of Soarin's POV--assuming he's quite the pessimist--except that he[/] comes off as a dick too.

Flying with his eyes shut through the middle of Manehattan, just expecting everyone to get out of his way? How is he not in prison/Tartarus?

The sheer amount of snark that he and Lyra toss around while Scootaloo might be dying simply beggars belief. And Bon Bon can barely be bothered to check up on her patient if it means dragging herself away from Soarin', who has the charisma of a vexed porcupine.

I'm seriously wondering why these ponies are all such bastards.

Your synopsis suffers from the same issues as the story itself, but here it's even more damning. You want your synopsis to [i]briefly
lay out what makes your fic different from an episode of the show, and to do so in such a way that it draws prosepctive readers. If I may, here's another way you could phrase your synopsis:

When Soarin' found a half-frozen filly in the woods, he also found a chance to change his errant ways and become a family stallion.

However, the winds of change are blowing across all of Equestria, and soon Soarin' will have to choose between living in peace and doing what is right.

The above is merely a suggestion--and a presumptuous one at that--but one way or another you definitely need to trim what you currently have.

Grammar, Spelling, and Other Thoughts
>How it made night appear faster and last longer.
Using "it" here implies that you're referring to the subject of your last sentence, but that was snow. If you put the snow sentence behind this one the problem is solved.

Courier missions? In the show the Wonderbolts seem like a fusion between the Blue Angels and the Navy SEALS; not exactly someone you'd have delivering mail. I suppose it could work if it's a packet of top-secret documents, but you'd want to mention that.


>small red brink building

>waited for the line move,
You forgot "to".

>Best part of these missions. Everything is paid for by the 'bolts.
I like this; it's snarky but not to the point of being a rick. You should capitalize "'bolts", though, as he's referencing a proper noun.

>"Oh ya,"
Unless Soarin's speaking German, it's "yeah". If he is, it's "ja".

>Exciting the city

>indistinguishable specs to his eyes

The bit where Spitfire is chewing him out, leading him to check up on Scootaloo: is that his imagination or a memory?

>Luckily sight isn't my only sense.
I have never seen a line this expositive outside of a comic book, and I'd like it to stay that way.

>"Dad said angles don't exist."
Suck it, Euclid!

It's usually preferable to italicize shouted dialogue. Or you can rely on the exclamation point. Either way, you generally want to avoid all caps unless you're portraying the Royal Canterlot Voice.

So Soarin' damn near breaks a door down in an effort to get help for Scootaloo and the first thing he does is look at a lyre in confusion? I'd move that observation to later in the scene. Or drop it altogether, as it's odd for somepony not to know a stringed instrument when they see one.

>"...she need help..."

>her mouth was gapping slightly.
Gaping. Although that's a weird reaction, in-context.

>sweet and dulcet
Dulcet (adj): Sweet.

>his hooves clanging on the wooden ground.
A) That's an odd sound for hooves on wood.
B) I think you mean "floor" rather than "ground".

>Sweetie Bell
Sweetie Belle is the commonly accepted spelling.

Unfortunately CPR and defibrillators are really useful when dealing with an irregular heartbeat. Full cardiac arrest is pretty much always fatal. I mention this because it looked like you were shooting for realism in this scene, so you might want Bon Bon--or the MED, if it's automated like an AED--to clarify that.

>"That cheep?"

>"I will take her, but alas, I do not know the way."
Soarin' really doesn't strike me as the type to quote Tolkien.

Closing Thoughts
If you think I hated your fic, you're wrong.

I see potential here, but it needs a lot of work before you resubmit to EQD.

Please do another re-write with this review in mind.

After that, come on back to /fic/ and get more reviews. In particular I recommend Applejinx for his expertise in characterization and MintyRest for his discerning eye, but get as many different reviews as you can; the more folks who read this, the more improvements you'll be able to make.

I look forward to seeing the end result.
>> No. 117370
Tch. Formatting errors. My kingdom for an edit button.
>> No. 117374
8/24 >>117315 Black Box

Okay, this is the first time I'm doing a fanfic review, but here goes. I call dibs!
>> No. 117378

It already is.
>> No. 117379

Your story is fairly well written for what's there, and I've added most of my suggestions as comments on the google doc.

My main question is this: how long of a fic are you planning on writing here? From what I've read you have set up a detailed world with multiple complex storylines that I'm assuming you will have a many chapters to clear up. If you do, that's great; I think it should come together nicely. If this is a short piece, I feel there's way too much going on. This is hard for me to judge with only this much of your story to go on, but it's a concern that I felt I needed to bring up.

I do think your concerns you listed are a bit over-critical. Your jumping chronology works well; while there isn't too much big action going on your skipping does add a good deal of suspense. It is a good hook to keep a reader there.

You talk about not liking the OCs, but they are pretty likable so far. Of the three of the main characters you have there, Origin seems the least developed. We don't really have a good feel for his personality, other than that he's less impulsive than Quick Step. He seems a bit more flat than the other two.

Overall your story is intriguing, and you've built a solid opening chapter. I'm curious to see where it all heads!

One last note, this is the first fic I've reviewed on this site, so if you could let me know if it was helpful or not that would be great! I hope something I wrote will be useful to you.
>> No. 117380
File 134591201641.jpg - (9.18KB , 205x246 , carefree.jpg )

>“I’m not the one wandering around Ponyville in the dark,” she countered.
>“So, how are we talking then?”
>Twilight sighed. “Okay, not normally.”
How does walking in the dark tie in to "how are we talking"?

>The hood turned away, there was a slight, peaceful sigh, and his head began to swivel again.
Most conjoined sentences have two dependent phrases, parts or ideas. This sentence, and a few others of its ilk below, have three. There's nothing wrong with it except that it doesn't read as smoothly as it should due to it being, well, different, in a way that is neither better nor worse than the norm. I would personally break your triplets up simply to make it more digestible. Just saying.

All right, so Twilight-meets-Knight scene over. I'd say you handled that pretty well. Didn't trigger any warning bells or anything, at least.

>Everything about Knight gave them the willies. His pleasant demeanor, his calm attitude, and that wasn’t even counting that rather memorable introduction
>followed by three positive-flavoured descriptors
Son, unpleasantness contaminates. The DD's unpleasant meeting with Knight therefore needs to contaminate. It needs to show in your word choice; that shapes the tone and mood. Of course, you might be going for the DDs actually liking their meeting, well, then, I'd have nothing to say except wat.

>Why had the door been left open?
Re-phrase this to something in Rover's POV

All right, so Rover feels intense fear. If I'm on the right track, this fear induction is still part of Knight's aura/perks/what have you, yes? So it reveals character. Even if inducing fear is no longer part of Knight's characterization, it still reveals character. So this fear is important. It has impact. Consider, therefore, giving this fear its own paragraph for it to really sink in. Not too long, but something like 4, 5 sentences? Right now, the fear descriptors are mixed in with actions, and so the weight of it is dissipated somewhat. Go into sensory details - eyes dilating, heart pumping, sinking feeling, hammer in the full, cold picture of Rover fearing for his life, and then start suggesting confusion because he doesn't know why he's so afraid. Or something. Just, put in a mood establisher to really kickstart the scene, and to really show that this Knight pony is unsavoury.

Yeah, this:
>He’d never been so terrified in all his life. What sort of creature were they dealing with?
feels puny. Get your writing chops working and convey to me some delish fear, yeah?

>W-what would y-you h-have us d-d-d-do?”
Stutter overkill.

>“Why would you need a gem that can do that?” asked Rover,
Maybe have him ask what "exude" means, and then this, so that you can cater to those of a lesser level of vocabulary. Also helps to make the DD sound more simple-minded.

>His eyes glowed in a vicious smile. “And then you’ll run. You’ll run as fast as you can.”
This makes it sound like an order to run after 2 halves of days, even though you said three weeks' journey. Clarify it - add "at the end of the three weeks, on the last day, ...."

There seems to be a lot of "chuckled" and "smiled" in here all of a sudden. Have a look at your saidisms and cut out one in every four.

> word, “crick”.
Remove comma

>“How does twice the first payment sound?”
Who says this? Add the tag

>Hmm, a dilemma indeed
What dilemma?

>sentences starting with So
Purge them all.

apple cart

>you mean” he sighed
missing comma

>willow wand
I have no idea what this is and why is it easy to move things with it.

>walking within visible distance but not immediately closing the gap
tell, make this more of a conscious effort by Twilight rather than just something she's been puppetered into doing

>“I can help you?” she said.
Rarity making a derp in the most common line of shopkeeping? Naw.

Consider putting in there somewhere, around AJ's scene, Twilight managing to see Knight's features more clearly. Give shape and height in more definite terms than "tall" - how tall? A head, a head and a half? Also legs and tail and body.

>fussing over him like some protective mother hen.
omit this; Kinght's had enough positive reception for one chapter as is.

>her actual fans
Just have her grab a regular fan. The "actual" has no place in here.

>After a few minutes of her fanning him like he was going to perish if he didn’t get some puffs of air blown into his face and asking him what was wrong, the stranger was able to stand again.
Wordy sentence is wordy. It's not tell, granted, but it's not gracefully written.

>wheezed, “Sorry about that.”
That comma is ugly. Removing it is probably incorrect, but rephrasing it so that it's not necessary is a better option than leaving it as it is.

You could stand to have more of Twilight's thoughts in that Rarity scene.

Aaand weak ending is weak. Please no thin, rheoric questions for endings, because you need to end on a definitive note. End with weight. Some sort of musing or conclusive thought.

So that's my stream-of-consciousness notes, written as I read your fic. Cue overall review.

It's actually not all that bad. That one moment of Knight finally doing something new was good; the rest of the fic, unfortunately, resembles a pattern so worn into the ground that stepping into the groove drops you on to the other side of the planet. I'm talking about "buy apples from AJ, get dress from Rarity" here. Do you know where else this pattern of activity is featured? Just about every poorly-written self-insert OC alicorn fic ever. Heck, all we're missing is a Pinkie Pie party. I find myself getting increasingly bothered about Knight's endless riches the more I think about it. I'm of the school of thought that gems aren't really worth all that much, because if they were, Rarity would no longer be living in Ponyville, so that may be getting in the way. But seriously, the latter half of this chapter, condensed, is filthy rich superpower OC gains favour with 2 of the Mane 6. Yes, there's no such thing as true originality in fanfic any more, but your choice of sequence of events is not helping your case at all. Scenes like the DD one, though, will, tremendously, because they show character. I discovered more about Knight as a character, plus the scenes were not something I would have come up with on my own. They were unique. The scenes with AJ and Rarity didn't have that. There were signs of it being "Hello Character, interact for the sake of checking boxes". Knight's motives for interacting with them felt shallow, so much more shallow than the DD scene where he actually wants something done for a change instead of simply to keep up some facade, burn time or whatever.

Do bear in mind that this is largely impressions talking. It's ridiculously subjective, but take from it at least something. Because as I type this out, I realize that this section is the only one that bothers me out of the whole chapter, aside from what I mentioned about the first three pages.

If you can come up with something that isn't so run-of-the-mill, then good. Break the mold with a vengeance. That's what interesting fics do. If you insist on keeping those in, well, I'm not sure how to go about improving it, but it is possible, with proper execution. A good piece of general advice, courtesy of the IRC, would be to make it so that every character is doing something at some time, and when your story's focus moves to them, it simply shows where their actions cross paths. Don't have characters be in there for the sake of having them be scenery. You've achieved this somewhat. That's why your Mane 2 scenes aren't downright bad; they're simply lacking.

Mind you, the writing's decent, and it's not something I dislike. It's just... lower-tier than I'd expected after the DD scene. Really Slice-of-life-ish, in a bland way (and Slice-of-life does not necessarily equal bland).

Which, of course, implies that I really like the DD scene. And I do. It progressed the plot. It fit into the adventure/intrigue theme of the whole thing. And it didn't even have Twilight in it.

So, in short, it's about time you started moving the story along. Go easy on the Slice-of-life moments; get your story up and running first, and reveal character. And no, not much character is revealed when all he does is spend lots of money and buys food and clothing and smiles all the time. Because you're already mentioned that.
>> No. 117381
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>And no, not much character is revealed when all he does is spend lots of money and buys food and clothing and smiles all the time. Because you're already mentioned that.
I should add that the character that you reveal in those scenes are things that we already know (Knight being polite and smile-y, Rarity being fussy about clothing - AJ is actually fairly well done in her scene). If you're going to keep the interactions, make a new spin on it so that it shows a deeper and/or new and/or interesting side to them.
>> No. 117407
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First, I'd like to claim this story by The_Incredible_Blunderbolt to review, assuming no one has yet? I'm also putting one of my own up for perusal:

Tags: [Adventure], Possible [Dark]

Synopsis: "In ages past, stories of warriors traveling the land, righting wrongs, defending the weak and needy, and engaging in epic deeds and romances, inspired many, both citizen and soldier. Princess Luna should know, because she was there for almost all of them, recorded many, exaggerated a couple, and outright fabricated a few. They have fallen into obscurity during the centuries of relative peace Equestria has enjoyed, but after the invasion of the Changelings nearly killed her sister, a chance encounter on the road finally convinces Luna that those ancient tales of chivalry need to be brought back. With a mysterious companion joining her on the path, the quest begins, and for the first time in many, many years, Luna is completely unsure of the ending to her story."

Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/44015/Night-Errantry

I think Chapters 1-3 are the most important to be reviewed, but if anyone would like to review all of it, I would be eternally grateful instead of just undyingly grateful.

I was sent here by the Equestria Daily pre-readers, and here is what they said:
"I've found instances of typos, missing words, shaky grammar, lots of show vs. tell... and to be honest, your interpretation of Luna comes off as cocky and overblown. I understand that she's supposed to be confident, but the way you portray her is over the top. Along with that, it seems like you've put a lot of effort into the combat scenes, but the rest of the story suffers a little as a result. My final issue is that you have Zecora speaking normally, rather than in rhyme after a point, with no explanation as to why there's a change in the first place. I understand rhyming's tough, but a little nod in the story would go a long way towards fixing that oddity."

So if anyone would like to help me with those issues or any others they notice, they shall have either of the above levels of gratitude.

I'm also going to get started on the review asap, and it shouldn't be too long since I'm stuck in sick this weekend. Cheers everyone!
>> No. 117408
I'd like to cancel the review of "Prologue: Twilight and I". So could it be taken off the queue?
>> No. 117410
I'd like to cancel the review of "Prologue: Twilight and I". So could it be taken off the queue?
>> No. 117414
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Crap, I didn't see that Blunderbolt asked for a specific person's review. If that's still the case, I claim Brony Z-ro's story here instead, if that's cool.

>> No. 117426
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In order to make more of those helpful links visible, I'd like to start using this for Training Grounds OP's
Since (as we all know) the visibility cut-off point is measured in the length of characters after processing of the BBCode and text into HTML, this more compact HTML should do the trick.

For this OP, put "114434" in the "Previous thread ID" field and hit "Generate". That should give you the markup.
>> No. 117427
On second thought, I'd like everyone's feedback on it first. How does it look, using definition lists for the link categories?
>> No. 117430
I like how the link to the IRC is above the "Read more" cut off, where it's easier to see.
>> No. 117436
>> No. 117439
Welp, I'm back! Let's cut right to the chase, shall we?

Title: The RED Cataclysm
Tags: Comedy, Crossover, Dark, Human, Romance*, 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 god. (A crossover with Team Fortress 2.)
Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1y9AJ7kJ34kvo5UlZ3o1c6GrUM25VmvV29cTEPEIUNgI/edit
Word Count: 5611

This time, I'm submitting Chapter 2 for review! I feel you should know that Chapter 1 has already been posted to FiMFiction. At time of writing, however, it has yet to be approved. Now, last time I was here, I received a review from Paper_mate_Pony. I punched up Chapter 1 a little in accordance with his advice, and I've taken his advice into account for Chapter 2 as well. Another review from him would be nice, but it's not mandatory.

*The Romance tag has been added to the story since it was last featured here, making this story a six-tag monstrosity. There is a perfectly valid reason why the tag was added, but it does not appear in this chapter.
>> No. 117445

Some of those problems (like all those sentences starting with ‘so’, “actual fans”, and even that final ending part of the chapter) have already been addressed for the most part. You’re working off the older copy. When I saw your review for the first half, I went through and started doing what I could to correct the majority of problems like that. I would have told you, but I didn’t think you wouldn’t have seen them. So, apologies there.

A few points still in the newer version leapt at me though, so I’ll discuss them.


>How does walking in the dark tie in to "how are we talking"?

Referring to the fact that she said she wasn’t the one wandering around Ponyville in the dark. He’s saying if that was the case, how could she be standing there talking to him? By necessity of logic, she would be wandering Ponyville in the dark, just like he was.

>This makes it sound like an order to run after 2 halves of days, even though you said three weeks' journey. Clarify it - add "at the end of the three weeks, on the last day, ...."

He said for them to release their power for half a day, every third day, for three weeks. So, every third day over that three week period, they release the power for half of one day. At the end of that half day, they run for two more days before repeating the process on the third day.

>willow wand

>I have no idea what this is and why is it easy to move things with it.

Okay, this was probably stupid on my part. The phrase (which to my knowledge does exist) is “Light as a willow wand”. I thought this would be a more interesting way of saying “he lifted it without difficulty”. I'll just get rid of that.

>“How does twice the first payment sound?”

>Who says this? Add the tag

Knight is. Is it really that confusing? Considering the scene, I’d have thought this was fairly obvious. If I really need a tag, I guess I can add one, but who else would be offering this?

>“I can help you?” she said.

>Rarity making a derp in the most common line of shopkeeping? Naw.

This was completely intentional. I do know it’s actually, “Can I help you?” but, by merely switching the first two words, I was changing the tone she’s supposed to be using. Remember, this is now the first time she’s seen this character, and what he’s wearing is a tattered cloak obtained from Canoids.

This is her basically saying, “You look horrible,” in slightly subtler way. I was hoping for a laugh.


Now, to address some of the concerns on the scenes with the Mane 2.

1. Twilight, in the scene where they’re talking at night, mentions that he looks a little sketchy, and the stranger agrees with her on that. He’s wearing a tattered looking cloak, and likes walking around in the dark, so he’s a tad creepy in appearance right now. This same being has also been released from underground after an undisclosed period of time.

So, he gets food, as we can both imagine he’s not had a lot to eat down there, and a slightly less strange looking cloak. He’s remedying two problems. That’s exactly why I haven’t had him meeting with Pinkie, or Rainbow Dash, or Fluttershy because here he’s looking for services, not being buddies. I also didn’t have him making friends with any secondary characters for that reason too. I use the Mane six because, well, he has to get them somewhere, right? If anything, maybe Applejack is the fifth wheel, because he doesn’t have to get apples. However, he’s seen her before in chapter one, so she’s immediately familiar to him. Why not get something from someone you’ve at least met?

2. Yes, I also don’t think gems are worth much in this universe. However, I thought they probably have at least a reasonable value, depending on the cut, size and type of gem. They aren’t like in human standards, where diamonds like those would make you wealthy beyond your wildest dreams, but I figured they’re probably worth more than just a few bits. He didn’t buy the whole cart with them, don’t forget, and Applejack didn’t offer the whole cart for them. She’s a business pony, and these are valuable to some degree. To her, it’s a smart transaction, if a little unorthodox.

3. The wealth could be argued that it has to do with him coming from underground, like the Diamond Dogs. Plus, he obviously doesn’t have bits to pay with, and he can’t just pull them out of the air. If he’s shown anything though, it’s that he does have access to gems.

4. I didn’t think he’d ingratiated himself with either Rarity or Applejack, and I really tried to avoid doing that at all costs.

Granted, he received a much stronger reaction from how he treated Rarity, so that would be the guiltier one of these interactions I’ll admit, but I reasoned that it was a matter of her personality. She’s one of the vainest of the Six, and thus reacts much more to flattery and praise. His demeanor plays into what she likes most: an individual with courtly manners and treats a lady like a lady. Hence, why she takes a more immediate liking to him.

This is also why it didn’t work quite so well with Applejack, who’s much less inclined to react so strongly to that sort of thing. He gave her a charming line, and she saw it as smooth talk, which she wouldn’t fall for. She was friendly with him, true, but I didn’t imagine this was being anything less than what she’d give any newcomer who at least shows respect to her.

5. This section is actually a big part of the reason I included the part with the DD. I knew that, if left unchecked, this would be seen as very close to using a self-insert, if maybe even outright doing so, despite my above thoughts and maybe just a bit boring besides as well. So, the part with the DD proves to the audience that, whatever else is happening, there’s more to it then what we’re seeing here and acts as a sharp contrast to the following scene and preceding scene. The scariest villains in my opinion are the ones who can smile with you and appear to be perfectly normal, even as they spin their webs.

6. True, it’s a little on the slower side, but hopefully the next two chapters make up for it. Don’t forget, I need to give the audience some time to breathe a little. The previous chapter had some build-up and a fight scene (though an admittedly short one) so we need some calmer moments too. If I constantly rock the boat, people don’t get to appreciate the waves.


This is in regard to the suggestion of giving more description of Knight’s looks under the cloak:

I’m hesitant to give out too much too soon. I’m toying with the idea of Chapter 5 being a reveal of how he looks under the cloak, but my original thought is to hold that until the very end. I don’t know how much I should really give before people would start questioning it. He’s an OC so, right out the gate some people are going to be eyeing him already, ready to call shenanigans if I make him a centimeter too tall or give his lip a strange twitch. You questioned the eyes, and that’s just one feature which can’t be obstructed from view, so I’m already nervous on revealing too much of how he looks at once.

I wanted him to have a fighting chance to develop some character first before I go about giving people ammunition on how he looks. Maybe I can give more, but I want to avoid too much at all costs.

Of course, this also partly explains why I generally use only the words “smile”, “chuckle”, and “laugh” with his dialogue when he needs to express those emotions. Most other words for laughter, when he needs to laugh, don’t really fit him (snicker, giggle, chortle) as they just don’t sound like anything he’d do. The sounds they conjure don’t match the voice in my head. And the smile really is only in the eyes, since we can’t see his face. I’m trying to keep some variation, but it’s hard with how little expression I can give him right now.

Any suggestions?


In regards to this quote:

> Son, unpleasantness contaminates. The DD's unpleasant meeting with Knight therefore needs to contaminate. It needs to show in your word choice; that shapes the tone and mood. Of course, you might be going for the DDs actually liking their meeting, well, then, I'd have nothing to say except wat.

The meeting was terrifying for them. But the moment passed and they actually received a good benefit from the experience.

They didn’t like it, and wouldn’t care to try that again, but to them this was an incredibly lucky break. They hope, and feel, that their part is over. Something caught them, scaring at least a few years off their life in the process, but it only asked some questions and sent them on their way with a huge reward for it. However, they wouldn’t care to try their hand again, which is why seeing him a second time nearly makes them soil themselves. In their minds, there is absolutely no good reason for Knight wanting to see them once more unless it’s for something horrible.


So, that’s my thoughts. Hope you enjoy three and four better, because we’re getting some more movement in those.
>> No. 117450
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Comments. That's all.

>Your story is fairly well written for what's there,

Alright awesome. Finally a mostly positive review. I've been getting frustrated lately. Glad someone kinda liked my stuff for once.

>My main question is this: how long of a fic are you planning on writing here?

ehhhhhhhhh. Well the whole thing was done as a vehicle for self-improvement as a writer. I pretty much winged the whole thing, plot wise, so I didn't really plan much. However, I'd like it to be about 6 chapters of the same size. It's set up to be long (that's just my writing style), but I don't want to mess with it too much unless people give it good feedback.

>my concerns

I'm glad you disagree. Most of my concerns were written before I re-tuned this story. They were worse at first.

>You talk about not liking the OCs, but they are pretty likable so far.

Wow that's great! I didn't expect that. I worked hard on trying to make them interesting. Also, yes, Origin is a little flat. However, instances where I wrote more dialogue to flesh him out slowed down the action, and just made him come off wrong. There will be more to develop him in the future along with Wave Chaser.

>I'm curious to see where it all heads!

Damn and exclamation point... this is serious... haha just messin. That's cool that I got someone truly intrigued. That was the goal. To be compelling with plot while working on my crappy writing (you should have seen my last work... it was written really bad.)

> Um... What death scene?

oh... yeah Originally Origin (pun intended) died in the scene with Twilight at the end. It got too much initial criticism so I rewrote it like a maybe. I tried to make the reader think he COULD have died. Obviously you thought he was totally fine which is no big deal either.

>let me know if it was helpful

Hell yeah. It was very helpful. You caught grammar derps I, and other friends of mine, missed (somehow) as well as gave me clear opinions/suggestions. It's really important, as a writer, to understand how your work is coming off to people. I honestly had no clue how people would see my OC's because I spend so much time viewing them from a different angle.

Also, I was really happy to see a review where they mention something I did right, rather than just being told what I did wrong. I'm not here to be praised, but there's just as much to learn from people telling you "this part is good." Anyways, it was really refreshing to feel like someone liked what I poured blood sweat and tears into during my very little free time.

I put more specific responses in the same google doc if you wish to view me making excuses all over the place.
>> No. 117453
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Alright! Done up to Chapter 3 (part 4 of the FimFiction link, this whole “having-a-prologue” thing is throwing me off :p). I'm going to leave some comments on the Chapter 4 googledoc soon, probably some time tomorrow. If you prefer to read praise before critique, then read this post backwards. Or something like that.

Here are some broad problems I came across.

The first is that it's bad form to write any bit of fiction in all caps, even onomatopoeia. It's better to use italics, bold, or sometimes both. If you're worried that doing that might confuse some lines with the Voice talking, just make it the only part of the story that is both italicized and bolded. (Speaking of the Voice, great job on that. Every time I read it, my inner narrator conjured up the most sinister reading it could imagine. Not sure exactly why that was so effective, but a lot of it was probably because of descriptions like it feeling like someone's head filling up with water.)

The second is that in dialog, it's best to let your reader know who is speaking as early as you can in each section. For example, the sentence: “'Oh, thank goodness! I was worried there for a second." Sweetie Belle said, shaking the last of the dirt out of her mane.'” would become: “Oh, thank goodness!” Sweetie Belle said, shaking the last of the dirt out of her mane. “I was worried there for a second.'” That might seem really minor, but when combined with lines where no speaker at all is named, it can make the whole chapter's speech seem off. For an example of that, take: “"Oh, there you are, Fluttershy dear! We were worried that you had forgotten."” While a moment's reflection on the context and speech pattern would reveal to most fans of the show that the pony talking is Rarity, that moment's reflection took me out of the story.

There are also a lot of places where there should or should not be commas, sometimes mixed up with periods (i.e., there are a few comma-spliced sentences, or “'I HOPE YOU LEARNED YOUR LESSON.' said Spike.” should have a comma in the quote instead of a period, that kind of thing). There are too many of them to list individually. That makes it sound worse than it actually is though, so don't worry too much, but since you mentioned submitting to Equestria Daily in a comment, I should note that that is something their pre-readers are generally very picky about. If you'd like, I could email you a copy of the story with as many of those errors as I can find fixed, or you could email me a googledocs link so I can edit it directly.

I am not usually one to harp on the whole “Lavender Unicorn Syndrome” thing, because variety of description is important, but it's best to keep those instances short, rare, and simple. “The purple unicorn” is fine, but “a certain multi-chromatic pegasus” is a bit much, especially since it was used at least twice in the same chapter. That reminds me, the phrase “a certain ____” when talking about known characters occurred often enough to throw me out of the story as well. Other ways to identify newcomers to a scene would help a lot. You can just use their names straight-away sometimes too. The narrator seems to be mostly omniscient, so we should usually be told who's who quickly, unless you have a *very* good reason for obfuscating.

Okay, just two little details that stuck out, then I'm done with the “bad news.” At the beginning of Chapter 1 there is some jarring tense switching where you describe modern spellcasting. While it is describing the present state of affairs in Equestria, the past tense should still be used when writing most fiction, with the past perfect as necessary. By that I mean something like this: “Chanting, while it had once been traditional, was rarely used for modern spellcasting. Most spells required a simple flick of the mind to accomplish, and more intricate ones a few moments of concentration.” Also, Chapter 2 devoted a long, unnecessary paragraph to describing Hedge Hill. I did get that it was a reference to the show, but I don't think the reference was amusing enough to warrant that much detail. One or two sentences at most.

Now, onto the good.

In general, you did really well in characterizing the main six. That might sound really easy to do, but you'd be surprised. Sometimes the Friendship is Magic writers themselves have trouble with it :p. A number of times, I found myself nodding, saying “yeah, that's exactly what she'd say.” Here's one quote I enjoyed from Pinkie Pie:

"Well, I noticed that after he was introduced to everypony you started being really nice to him and at first I didn't think about it because it was his welcome party but then I remembered that usually at welcome parties you pull pranks and I began to wonder why instead of doing that you were super nice to him even nicer than when you're normally nice and especially nicer considering it was a welcome party and you normally aren't super nice at welcome parties (no offense) and I tried to think of all the reasons why you would be so nice to him just out of the blue like that and only one reason made sense!"

I'm usually left cold by reading Pinkie's run-on sentences in fics, but this one had me grinning the whole way through, and laughing out loud at the (no offense) part. That whole scene was pretty good, actually. That would have been a great prank to play on the master prankster, if things hadn't gone horribly wrong with Molt's sudden arrival.

I also loved Fluttershy's conversation with Angel in Chapter 3. It was like her voice was coming out of my speakers.

Moving on, finding out just how many times Twilight Sparkle had figured Molt's magic out was horrifying in such a subtle way as to be worthy of a really good suspense tale. From your synopsis, I was expecting Twilight to be the one getting the weird hallucinations first. Or maybe she did, and I misread and thought Rainbow Dash got them first. Either way, the extremely low-key mindfuck of Twilight was one of the best parts of the story.

I am a huge fan of dread. I can take or leave blood and guts and death in my horror (usually leave, so that's another point to you for not dwelling on those aspects too long), but if a horror story doesn't have dread, it isn't worthy of the title. You did an excellent job of building that up. Discovering that something very sinister has been able to read Twilight's letters to Celestia was particularly chilling.

I hope my final bit of praise doesn't come across as douche-y or faintly damning, but I think it might say a lot. I have an instinctive negative reaction against stories where the villain is, or is implied to be, an even bigger threat to Equestria than all the previous villains combined. I just don't like My Little Pony stuff that is that huge. I have favorited your story nonetheless, because you proved that you can build tension and terror without relying on massive displays of power, which is what I've seen far too often. The mind-bending manipulation of our beloved ponies that has been, and hopefully will continue to be, in the story is great.

I really hope my review helps you out. Again, let me know if you want me to fine-tooth-comb the grammatical errors out. I'd be happy to. Keep up the good work!
>> No. 117457
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>Referring to the fact that she said she wasn’t the one wandering around Ponyville in the dark. He’s saying if that was the case, how could she be standing there talking to him? By necessity of logic, she would be wandering Ponyville in the dark, just like he was.
>He said for them to release their power for half a day, every third day, for three weeks. So, every third day over that three week period, they release the power for half of one day. At the end of that half day, they run for two more days before repeating the process on the third day.
I calls 'em as I sees 'em. The first one really is too big a leap in logical step for me, and the second is complicated by nature. Hence you need clearer descriptions.

>“How does twice the first payment sound?”
>Knight is. Is it really that confusing? Considering the scene, I’d have thought this was fairly obvious. If I really need a tag, I guess I can add one, but who else would be offering this?
Because one of the DD goes on to cover his mouth as if he insulted Knight, and thus I thought there was a possibility that it was the DD that suggested it. I'd add the tag anyway, if not for clarity, then for aesthetic reasons: every other dialogue in that chunk has a tag, and only that line is hanging.

>This was completely intentional. I do know it’s actually, “Can I help you?” but, by merely switching the first two words, I was changing the tone she’s supposed to be using. Remember, this is now the first time she’s seen this character, and what he’s wearing is a tattered cloak obtained from Canoids.
>This is her basically saying, “You look horrible,” in slightly subtler way. I was hoping for a laugh.
Hmm, okay. Then add facial expression and nuances in her tone to better present this.

>The wealth could be argued that it has to do with him coming from underground, like the Diamond Dogs. Plus, he obviously doesn’t have bits to pay with, and he can’t just pull them out of the air. If he’s shown anything though, it’s that he does have access to gems.
>This is also why it didn’t work quite so well with Applejack, who’s much less inclined to react so strongly to that sort of thing. He gave her a charming line, and she saw it as smooth talk, which she wouldn’t fall for. She was friendly with him, true, but I didn’t imagine this was being anything less than what she’d give any newcomer who at least shows respect to her.
I actually didn't find the AJ scene, or his copious amounts of money, to be much problem on the first read-through. It was when I went back to it that the similarities to Plot X started popping out, and when, in relative terms, I saw that you could capitalize so much more on the DD scene.

You've got something that passes. But I'm challenging you to do better, because the DD scene showed me that you can do precisely that. Take a path that isn't as flimsy to skepticism and isn't as heavily trodden. It's your call, ultimately.

>1. Twilight, in the scene where they’re talking at night, mentions that he looks a little sketchy, and the stranger agrees with her on that. He’s wearing a tattered looking cloak, and likes walking around in the dark, so he’s a tad creepy in appearance right now. This same being has also been released from underground after an undisclosed period of time.
>This section is actually a big part of the reason I included the part with the DD. I knew that, if left unchecked, this would be seen as very close to using a self-insert, if maybe even outright doing so, despite my above thoughts and maybe just a bit boring besides as well. So, the part with the DD proves to the audience that, whatever else is happening, there’s more to it then what we’re seeing here and acts as a sharp contrast to the following scene and preceding scene. The scariest villains in my opinion are the ones who can smile with you and appear to be perfectly normal, even as they spin their webs.
There's a line between irritating and scary. Scary comes from the unknown. Imagine showing Harry Potter from both Snape's POV as well as Harry's. We end up watching Snape, who probably isn't really likeable, screw Harry over, whom we care about. Snape's final redemption-revelation loses all its impact because we're been bearing with him for so long rather than outright disliking him for the villain he seems to be. Here, you have us watching Knight, who isn't really likeable, slowly screw over Twilight, whom we care about. That wouldn't be scary; that would be irritating. It's too early to say whether this is how it's going to turn out, but it's something to keep at the back of your mind.

>True, it’s a little on the slower side, but hopefully the next two chapters make up for it. Don’t forget, I need to give the audience some time to breathe a little. The previous chapter had some build-up and a fight scene (though an admittedly short one) so we need some calmer moments too. If I constantly rock the boat, people don’t get to appreciate the waves.
And this is only the 2nd chapter. If you have plot cannons you need to keep them firing. "Fast-paced" is more often a compliment than not. You've got a cast where Twilight has a greater advantage over Knight in terms of acceptability - "why is he/she in this story?". You need to shove the plot along regarding Knight to keep him relevant, to close the gap in terms of purpose in the story so that his presence becomes something accepted - not necessarily liked, but accepted. Having him dawdle in town doesn't do that.

>I’m hesitant to give out too much too soon. I’m toying with the idea of Chapter 5 being a reveal of how he looks under the cloak, but my original thought is to hold that until the very end. I don’t know how much I should really give before people would start questioning it. He’s an OC so, right out the gate some people are going to be eyeing him already, ready to call shenanigans if I make him a centimeter too tall or give his lip a strange twitch. You questioned the eyes, and that’s just one feature which can’t be obstructed from view, so I’m already nervous on revealing too much of how he looks at once.
>I wanted him to have a fighting chance to develop some character first before I go about giving people ammunition on how he looks. Maybe I can give more, but I want to avoid too much at all costs.
>Of course, this also partly explains why I generally use only the words “smile”, “chuckle”, and “laugh” with his dialogue when he needs to express those emotions. Most other words for laughter, when he needs to laugh, don’t really fit him (snicker, giggle, chortle) as they just don’t sound like anything he’d do. The sounds they conjure don’t match the voice in my head. And the smile really is only in the eyes, since we can’t see his face. I’m trying to keep some variation, but it’s hard with how little expression I can give him right now.
There's more than smiles to it. Tails twitch and some roll on the balls of their hooves or something. And by the time you mention him smiling for the dozenth time, we already get the point.

Why not have him don a guise spell of some sort? He would certainly know of one. Tada - plain old Joe-pony which the readers can view properly in their heads.

>The meeting was terrifying for them. But the moment passed and they actually received a good benefit from the experience.
Doesn't make the experience any less harrowing, and the descriptors are counter-intuitive to the side of Knight you're trying to show.
>> No. 117463
Updated the OP, as you can see. If anything's amiss, be sure to report.
>> No. 117470
File 134597166735.png - (107.17KB , 617x887 , 131216364215.png )
Aaallright! Every link above the "Read More"! It worked perfectly.
>> No. 117475
File 134597379897.png - (106.00KB , 820x800 , derpy_in_socks_by_grilledcat-d427fov.png )
Actually, there is one thing amiss, which I just corrected: I got the ID wrong on the sticky; it should be 112263. My bad.

Should work properly now. Please change, when you get the chance.
>> No. 117476
...Aaaand thanks!
>> No. 117478
No problem. If there's anything else, just let me know!
>> No. 117523
File 134600945855.png - (35.61KB , 775x607 , twilight_and_celestia_by_eeveepikachuchan-d4lfb2m.png )
Title: "A Talk"
Author: Dubs Rewatcher
Email: [email protected]
Tags: [Slice-Of-Life]

Synopsis: One winter afternoon, Princess Celestia receives a visit from her student, Twilight, for one of their weekly reading sessions. But she quickly realizes that something is wrong.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ndY3so8NY-osBMYq1wC0jioEBbCpqQyCHaKS742W4jY/edit

Comments: Just a short littler thing I wrote last night. Not looking to make this a masterpiece or anything.
>> No. 117524
File 134601022007.png - (145.75KB , 500x500 , 132891099959.png )
Not to bother everyone yet again, but I'd just like to call everyone's attention to a small change: instead of the post number in the first field, now put the permalink. That way is much easier. To use: just right click the "No." link in the post header of the request you wish to claim in lieu of posting your own request for a review, and select "copy link location/address", then paste the result into that field.

I decided it would be great to do it this way because that allows me to very easily turn the "charity" column in the "Unclaimed" filtersheet into a hyperlink to the post that was requested, so that it's easier to see what was claimed, which is handy for reviewers an even moreso for maintainers, who can more quickly (using this feature) recognize the request as claimed. Which reminds me, I really need to catch up on working on Gummii, which (when finished) will be way better and will make this entire system (which I conceived of almost a year ago) totally obsolete.

Also, I thought it late enough after the most recent /fic/ write-off to amend the claim "You'll Never Know Until You Try It" as being mine own. Because it was, and I wrote that "story". I may work on improving that story today, but the weather outside and/or possibly a matinee with friends (and a long-overdue review for Master Edward J) beckon.
>> No. 117527
File 134601078576.jpg - (38.55KB , 300x200 , 19342.jpg )

It's my first time, so I'll give it a shot.
>> No. 117564
File 134602368463.png - (39.26KB , 200x200 , kamina.png )

This will mark my very first review and hopefully set me up for many more to come. Any pointers on how to review would be appreciated as well.

I don’t really know how to approach this review all to well, seeing as you said you weren’t trying to make this a masterpiece or anything, so I’ll just give you my impressions on it along with some advice.

Also, since it was rather short I really didn’t have much material to work with.

Ok, let’s begin.


The synopsis of the story could use some improvement. It didn’t really feel that interesting at all. There isn’t anything truly wrong with it, but it just feels dry. A good synopsis is key to attracting potential readers.

This story was pretty cookie-cutter in terms of plot. You didn’t really bring anything new or original to the genre in terms of story as well, which made it extremely predictable. The basic formula: somepony sees something is wrong with another pony, they talk, and the pony with the problem has an epiphany/revelation that they are wrong and what not and they make some kind of resolution to make things all better again.

Though the story did follow the basic formula, I would have like it more if it was just a bit longer in order to describe Twilight’s transitions from emotion to emotion better. Personally, it didn’t make too much sense for me to read about how angry/sad Twilight then to have in the span of 50 or so words have her being fine. It felt as if Twilight wasn’t really mad at all, and that she was just making excuses to act dramatic.


I have to say that Princess Celestia shined in this fic. She just felt so right in my opinion. Her thoughts and the little jokes she made characterized her pretty well. Taking into account this is a younger Twilight Sparkle, she was characterized pretty good as well. There isn’t much I can say about that other then keep up the good work.

However, I don’t think Shining Armor would ever say that he hates Twilight or that she’s stupid. Evidence being that even during the end scene in “A Canterlot Wedding-Part 1” he never said such things to Twilight when that was a more serious situation. I don’t know what was going through your mind, but I’m going to assume that since Shining is younger as well, he let his temper get the better of him.

Just a quick afterthought, didn’t the song BBBFF say that “We never had a single fight.”
Hell, whatever though. It’s just a story and I wasn’t sure how close to canon you wanted this to be.


To be honest, there were not very many errors that I could find in the area. There were a few however such as:

>Twilight looked up at her menor irritably.

I’m assuming the word you were looking for is mentor?

>As the guard had told her, her student, Twilight was walking into the room.

To me this felt clunky. Maybe you should rearrange it so the two “hers” aren’t right next to each other.

>She glanced at Twilight, and suddenly became aware that her student was naked.

This stopped me in my tracks. I honestly thought for a moment, ‘Aren’t the ponies supposed to be naked?”
I advise that you find a different word for naked or describe it in a different way.

Try not to use parenthesis to much. They’re usually not needed.
Also, even though there is no law about using conjunctions in the beginning of sentences try to limit it. People like me who grew up hearing how bad that is really get thrown off by that sort of thing.

End Thoughts:
I have to say that even though it’s a bland concept you executed the story very well and that it still managed to warm my heart ever so slightly. I happen to be a huge fan of the slice-of-life genre and you did a good job pulling it off. Keep writing and keep up the good work.

And that’s my first review complete!
>> No. 117574
File 134603144168.jpg - (43.36KB , 512x269 , bio31.jpg )
I'm still new to reviewing myself, but this looks solid to me.
>> No. 117584
File 134603655648.png - (137.39KB , 386x421 , 132619963672.png )
Well, I don't claim to be an expert, but this is a community effort, so here's my piece, number ratings this time:

Evaluation of the story:
You clearly and thoroughly explained what you thought of the story, and noted individual examples of errors. 9/10

Grammar/Punctuation [b/]
A good review should have little to no errors, and you’ve got a few. [b]7/10

Try typing your review in a text editing software first, and proofreading it before you post.

You came off as a little skittish, but it’s acceptable considering this was your first review. Most of your points were able to back themselves. 7/10
I would advise you to read the different writing tools available to you, in order to become more educated and more confident about what to tell the author of the story you’re reviewing.

Categorical, with mostly clear and informative descriptions. A few line-by- line examples. 8/10
Some reviewers prefer to use number ratings as well, but it’s not necessary. One or two of your descriptions could probably be a bit clearer, but I can’t tell without having read the story.

No BBCoding used, whatsoever. Review is mildly flavored. 4/10
While this last category isn’t as important as the others, it is still nice to see some sort of dynamic in your review. Try coloring your review with some bolds, underlines or italics, and maybe season it with some personalized arguments that make your points just a bit clearer.

Overall rating
Not bad, you successfully submitted your opinion of the story, and gave the author useful advice to use on their story. 45/50
I gave you a curve of 10 because that last category isn’t as important as I make it sound.
>> No. 117586
File 134603794903.png - (37.04KB , 225x224 , 25696344356.png )
well, it would seem I need to proofread my posts more thoroughly in the future.
>> No. 117589

Wow, thanks guys! It makes me feel all warm and cuddly inside when someone says I did something good. Also, thanks for the tips Minjask, I'll be sure to implement them in the future.

Man, I want to review another story, but all the stories in the queue are kind of long compared to the one I just did.

So basically, I really really want to review something, but I don't feel like it. Does that make sense? You guys get that feeling?
>> No. 117590
Tags: [Dark] [Comedy]
Synopsis: [Meant to sound like the ad for some B Horror Movie]

According to the myth, if you say "Bloody Mary" before a mirror three times, then turn the lights off and on, she will appear. Sometimes she's just an image. Other times, as the stories go, she'll eat your brains or something like that.

In Equestria, the "Bloody Marey" myth is quite similar. Except it's real. And she eats eyes.

Join Pinkie Pie and Twilight Sparkle as they struggle with this spawn of Tartarus and her restless afterlife. Will they live? Will they soil themselves? Or will their shenanigans hide the fact that we're talking about a demonic ghost pony named "Marey"?

Only time will tell!
Link: https://docs.google.com/folder/d/0B_PHPA4FL7ZXcmdDOUZmTGVqaUE/edit
Comments: Just 2 chapters so far, always doubting my ability to make something actually funny to anyone but me. Mostly asking for help with the Comedy aspect.

So totally not my second fic directly inspired by SSPU
As a side note I might take something to review later when I feel more up to it.
>> No. 117595
>So basically, I really really want to review something, but I don't feel like it. Does that make sense? You guys get that feeling?
I do a little, but it's more common for me to get sidetracked by my own fic and/or my non-pony life stuff.
>> No. 117596
Thanks. It was just a niggling idea I got in the shower, and I wanted to get it out on paper. I'll be sure to fix what you said!
>> No. 117597
File 134604276383.png - (86.65KB , 500x524 , rainbow-dash-is-cool.png )

Heh, no problem. Next time you write something I'll be glad to give you another review!
>> No. 117599
Thankyou, I'm glad you liked it. And especially thanks for pointing out the dialouge issues. I felt like something was up with that, but I could not have figured it out myself. I hope you enjoy chapter 4!
>> No. 117642
>> No. 117650

Thanks for taking the time to look over my work.

> You're seriously coming across as though you type this with an open thesaurus in your lap.

I must admit, I kind of do. Being a new author I get worried about word repetitions. I'll work on toning it down.

>But your descriptions are a bit too detailed in your action scenes, which slows things down.

Good thing you didn't read the first drafts then, it used to be much longer.


There is a reason that Lyra and Bon Bon are supposed to come of as frustrated and annoyed. Although, Soarin definitely comes off as too much of a jerk. Tone it down, I shall.

Again, thanks for taking the time to review my story. I'll take your criticisms into consideration and try to improve the tale.
>> No. 117652
File 134608899162.jpg - (257.21KB , 1024x1024 , 133798578827-1.jpg )
>Thanks for taking the time to look over my work.
You're welcome! I'm simply paying forward the Kindness that others have shown me.

>Being a new author I get worried about word repetitions. I'll work on toning it down.
Heh, I absolutely did the same thing in my first works--I'm new to pony fics, but I farted around on other projects before--and it ruined them. If I can spare you that pain I'll be very pleased.

>Good thing you didn't read the first drafts then, it used to be much longer.
Oh my! You might want to look at the Dresden Files series, or perhaps some of Simon R. Green's works. They're pretty good at punchy action scenes, and Green in particular is good at implying descriptions without using many words. I wouldn't look to Green for characterization tips, though; he tends towards Marty Stus, in my opinion.

>There is a reason that Lyra and Bon Bon are supposed to come of as frustrated and annoyed. Although, Soarin definitely comes off as too much of a jerk. Tone it down, I shall.
I might be thick, but I couldn't pick up on Lyra's reason as she seemed pissed right out of the gate. Bon Bon only seemed frustrated in one way--if you know what I mean--and seemed pleasant enough otherwise. Glad to hear about Soarin'; a protagonist you can't like is a hard sale to make.

>Again, thanks for taking the time to review my story. I'll take your criticisms into consideration and try to improve the tale.
My pleasure, especially because you've gotten back to me. This is only my second review, and I really appreciate the feedback!
>> No. 117675
File 134610929909.png - (317.43KB , 1920x1440 , mlfw5609_huge.png )
Title: The Box
Author: alexmagnet
Tags: Dark
Synopsis: Rarity receives a strange visitor one day, and an even stranger box.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/159ekP7lULp_PsgsYiCdeCq3tEYYtO2TIGsQ5ufAi1nc/edit

I've got a relatively short story I'd like someone to review. I wrote, more or less on a whim, for two reasons. One, to write out of my comfort zone and two, to write a one-shot. I frequently write far more than I intend and I wanted to set myself a limit, just to see if I could do it. My limit was 5K and I was able to keep it well under that.

Anyways, the main things I want to know is if the syntax and word choice seems correct. This story was heavily influenced by Bram Stoker's Dracula and I was trying to imitate his style in a way. So, I suppose if I was requesting a reviewer I would ask for one that has read Dracula so they can judge the style. Really though, I'll take any review. I'm not too picky.

Thanks in advance.
>> No. 117677
File 134611189904.jpg - (55.48KB , 904x720 , mlfw4324-1334919344386.jpg )

Yup, just acknowledging a review. It was all in-document. Thanks to SeattleLite, you're the best bro.
>> No. 117678
File 134611205912.png - (0.98MB , 2123x2430 , sweetie_dracula_by_lerauxart-d502rss.png )
I'd like to claim this tale. I imagine it's bad form to grab from the "fresh" end of the list, but I really liked Dracula.
>> No. 117679
File 134611234730.png - (235.61KB , 710x469 , 132619874222.png )
>mfw seattle gets another review done before it can be removed from the unclaimed list
I really need to get moving.
>> No. 117682
File 134611360503.png - (24.19KB , 150x148 , angry_rarity_by_ilonis-d4f6qoo.png )
>> No. 117685
File 134611411214.png - (168.83KB , 838x953 , 25381_imgcache.png )

You know, I wouldn't mind having another person look at it if you still want to. In fact, I would love to have another person take a look.
>> No. 117688
File 134611623481.png - (117.12KB , 500x673 , tumblr_llcbd7K3dz1qha245o1_500.png )
D'aw, thanks! I won't be as fast as Seattle because I'm not a witch but I'll do my best.
>> No. 117691
File 134611706458.jpg - (139.51KB , 500x568 , NapoleonBike.jpg )

>because I'm not a witch

had me cracking up for a good minute...

Thanks though, I'm glad that someone who really loves Dracula will read this. I really appreciate it. Also, take all the time you need. I'm in no rush.
>> No. 117724
File 134615312438.png - (128.21KB , 320x229 , 79231_-_Artist_rizcifra_Scrunchy_Nose_Sweetie_Belle_candy_cute_nightmare_night_rarity_sisters_sl.png )
Welcome to your review! Enter freely and of your own free will!

First, let us speak of your primary concern: your syntax and choice of words as compared to Dracula.

As best I can tell--and I downloaded a copy of Dracula to refresh my memory--you're pretty much spot-on during the journal segments.

As you mostly just wanted to know about that, I will spoiler-box the rest of this review. You are under no obligation to "open" this box.

And now we commence with the unsolicited commentary.

As I said, the journal segments are very Stoker. Unfortunately, there's the rub: the journal reads as if it were written by Jonathan Harker of London, rather than by Rarity of Ponyville. You've done too well, Mr. Magnet... but I suppose that's only fitting for an author shooting for gothic horror.

There are certain details that scream "English gentleman," but as Rarity is based on a "Virginia princess" it doesn't quite fly.

>At the time of his arrival [...] I spared him only a cursory glance.
As best I recall from the series, during business hours Rarity puts her customers first. If you'd like her to keep this aloof reaction, I'd recommend having the Visitor enter Carousel Boutique just after it closes.

Oh, I'm getting ahead of myself! I forgot to mention: in the interests of both keeping to Stoker's style and enhancing the horror of the piece, I recommend dropping the third-person segments at the beginning and end. The opening I would drop in its entirety, instead skipping straight to the first diary entry. Like Stoker, you could simply tag the beginning "From the diary of Rarity".

The content of the ending piece cannot be completely discarded of course, lest you lose the tale's sting. I'd recommend transitioning to Rainbow Dash's diary/journal and more-or-less echoing the first Rarity entry. Admittedly you'd lose the mention of the Visitor's list, but in my opinion that would only enhance the horror.

Oh, and you might want to change the Visitor's appearance slightly; his current palette is a near-match for Hoity Toity.

I'd recommend making the Visitor's opening statement more vague. Unless the compulsion of the Box begins working instantly--and I didn't get that feeling--the fact that he mentions a "dark and awesome power" should make Rarity run straight to Twilight Sparkle and by extension Princess Celestia.

That's something as well. While your word choice and syntax are indeed very much like Dracula, the overall feel is wildly different. A large part of that comes from the challenge you set for yourself, to write short little piece. Stoker's style in Dracula is slow and thoughtful, allowing the tension to simmer along slowly. Using similar phrasing in a much faster-paced work feels... odd. It makes the later entries seem less "gothic horror" and more like Gollum's chats with himself from the Lord of the Rings films.

Ugh. Re-reading my review, I come off as though I didn't enjoy this.

That's not the case at all. I'd just say that Dracula-esque stylings and a super-short fic don't mix. As much as I liked this story in its current form, I think it could benefit either from either deviating from Stoker more or from being expanded upon.

But of course I am but one reviewer, and a novice at that. I can only hope that my thoughts are helpful to you.
>> No. 117738
File 134616397683.jpg - (84.45KB , 894x894 , the_one_and_only_rarity_by_johnjoseco-d3eeyk1.jpg )
> Enter freely and of your own free will!
I really love that line. It's so inviting and yet so foreboding at the same time. Stoker, why are you so awesome?

>You are under no obligation to "open" this box.
I see what you did there.

Anyways, as for the review I like many of your suggestions. Like, making the Visitor show up just after the store closes. That's easy to implement and it makes Rarity's aloofness more believable. Also, dropping the third-person segments. I thought about it for awhile and I have to agree. Dropping the first part almost seems necessary now. As for the last bit, I think I'll leave his metamorphosis in there (as I feel that is important) and take out most of the other stuff and just go right into RD's journal. The only problem I have with that is she doesn't really talk (or write I assume) like Rarity. I don't want to lose the gothic-y-ness of the writing, but I also think that jumping straight into her journal would do what the ending does already, only better, and in a more implied way.

That actually brings me to my next point. You said that I was too closely resembling Harker and, by extension, Stoker in my writing. I agree that Rarity does seem more English gentlemanly than she ought to. I'll probably go back and re-write some of it to make it seem less so, but I was trying to write her as being more well-spoken than even she is the show. Not necessarily out of character, but closer to Stoker so as to keep the gothic feel. I mean, if the characters talked like they did in FiM then it would seem really weird in the context of this story. Anyways, like I said, I'll change some of it, but I'll keep the overall tone of the writing.

As for the Visitor's appearance, yeah, I didn't even think about that. Heh, wouldn't it be funny if it was actually Hoity Toity as the villain and he was some kind of monster? I suppose I'll just change his mane to black. I was trying to avoid Gary Stu territory, but I think giving him a black mane wouldn't be too bad. It feels more Dracula-esque anyways, without being a rip-off.

As for why Rarity doesn't just take off to tell her friends and whatnot about this box, well I was trying to imply that the Visitor held some kind of power over her, that made her willing to do as he wished. I suppose I'll have to add more in to make that more apparent. Maybe something about him pleading with his eyes, or something that shows her looking into his eyes and then shortly afterwards being unable to refuse. Seattle had some similar points and I think both of you are right.

Hmm, I understand what you mean when you say that it feels odd for it to be written like Dracula yet be very short. I'll probably expand upon it some, and maybe stretch the length of time she spends as the box's keeper. But, I don't want to end up with a 600 page story like Dracula. I'll keep it short, not just because of the challenge, but because I prefer it to be kept quite short. I don't think I could sustain this story for a long time without losing some of what I was going for. To that end, I will try to make it a little less Stoker-y while still maintaining the gothic feel.

Anyways, thanks a lot for the review. It was excellent and it made me think about what I wanted to change. I'm glad that I was able to capture Stoker's style, even if that ended up being a little detrimental, and that you seemed to enjoy it. I can only hope that further revision will only serve to improve this fic.

If it's not too much trouble I'd ask that in a day or two you take another look at it to see the changes I will have made. I'm not asking for another review, simply a "cursory glance" and for some of your thoughts.
>> No. 117739
File 134616383257.jpg - (57.38KB , 693x960 , 149730_408956145803658_100000678274898_1291656_1191550359_n.jpg )
Okay, review part two, here we go. I apologize for the wait. This really only took me four hours, so I wish I could have had time sooner.

> That’s what happened to Silver Spoon; she was laughing inside so hard that her body didn’t move.
And the first mistake: this one is difficult to notice, because both instances are past tense, but you’re supposed to be telling about present events in a past tense narration, that’s how most stories are told. Although the reader doesn’t notice it, they are perceiving the events real time, even though it’s in past tense. What you have here is what I can only think to call a double past tense, a.k.a a past tense event within a past tense narration. You’re telling this in a way that implies that it happened before the current point in the story. Instead of “that’s what happened” it should be “that’s what was happening”. Notice the difference?

It almost seems unrealistic that Prince Blueblood would mention his unruly behavior in such a casual manner, but I’ve done similar in the past, so I suppose it’s believable. The problem is that it’s almost talking heads; the only actions you include are Silver Spoon’s laughing-so-hard-she-can’t-move and her occasional jaw drops. It’s also a massive info dump, and doesn’t progress the story.

>You may be surprised, but even though this is the pegasus bay the coordinator is usually an earth pony.
There should be a comma after bay.

The scene where Caramel gives a tour of the Celestia also bugs me. It’s an info dump, and seems to serve no purpose other than to deliver Apple Bloom’s line: Full of surprises. Not to mention it feels very telly, although I can’t seem to spot any specific instances.

>“Oh my!” Cheerilee said. “I had no idea they were working you so hard!” The fuchsia earth pony paused for a moment, thinking.
Urgh– LUS. Just say “she”.

>The song continued, but Mac was elsewhere. He hadn’t heard that song in a long, long time. It took him back to when he was just a gangly colt, doing his best in all of his classes even though he knew that most of them were useless to a farmer, pining for this filly or that, laughing with his friends.
This adds nothing to the story.

>???, Aitselec Ratsynop. os ro setunim neetfif sunim T.
I didn’t even read this section. Wall o’ text. Not touching it until you fix that.

Nice Sleep number joke. That got a chuckle.

> Fluttershy didn’t know how it was possible,
I’m not sure why, but that one sounds like a couple of grinding gears.

And at this point I also think I have RD’s feather flu about figured. I suspected when she first mentioned the pills made her feel bad that something might be the case, but when Applejack sneezed, it was like fresh scent to a bloodhound. Now that Fluttershy is noticing the accelerated advancement of the feather flu, it’s obvious to me that Somepony spiked Rainbows food or drink somewhere along the line, and has replaced her pills with something to advance the disease, rather than cure it.

>They got from the paper to her eyes just fine, but something within her was filtering out the meaning before they could reach her brain.
This right here is the epitome of tell. Lose it.

Heh, figures Spitfire would be the CAG.

>T plus sixteen minutes. Ponystar Celestia, pegasus bay.
This section is another info dump. I can see the importance of mentioning the reason for Scootaloo’s flightlessness, but don’t take so long getting there.

>“Nothing to report at thith time, Major!”
Okay hold up a moment. You’re telling me that Twist is in the military too?! Write some OC’s for pony’s sake! Don’t just recycle characters in the hopes that you’ll be able to explain away the oddity of them being military. Colonel Agrippa is currently your only original character.

>“Well, if he’s not answering the on the comm.
You’ve got an extra word there, and that period should be a comma.

>The dragon’s green spines flared slightly. “It?”
You’re trying to show offense at Spitfire’s error, but she never said “it”, she said “your dragon”.

>“An extremely qualified mare,” Twilight said, fair too calmly.
Should be “far”.

You really need to work on spacing out your paragraphs; a lot of these are very large blocks of text.

>“I really like her mane,” Prince Blueblood said evenly, like he was quoting something.
I do hope you’re going to explain how he knows about that.

>As she waited Spitfire took a sip of her applejack,
Comma after waited

And then another random and seemingly pointless flashback, after an equally insignificant trigger. These are getting annoying.

You also might want to unjustify your text. Short sentences like: Apple Bloom took a deep breath.
End up looking like: Apple Bloom took a deep breath.

rtant‘causeIdon’twantyoutohateme‘n’notwantmetobeyoursisternomore!” she said in a rush.

> “Ah was askin’ Mac if you were in love with Twilight,” she said.
WHAT?! ’TIS A LIE! Ow, okay, brain hurt. Ow. WHY?! Okay, seriously why? What possible reason could you have for this? Maybe I’m just intruding with my own opinion on this shipping but I do not see what this adds to the story at all. As much as it explains the previous behavioral tidbits, it further labels them all as pointless, and of needing to be deleted.

>especially given the lightning bolt of pain that shot through Bucky McGillicutty when Applejack put her weight down
It took me until now to remember this from the Mare-Do-Well episode. I know you think it’s a clever line, but it’s only serving to confuse your reader. Get rid of it.

> She shot a glance to where Discord had been, but he had vanished without a trace.
Clichés are a no-no in writing unless they’re absolutely necessary; cut those last three words.

Your overall Plotline is excellent, but you weigh it down with far too many pointless details, and while I can’t find anything technically wrong with your writing style, it’s not the most attractive narrative voice. Touch this up a bit, and then find a really good editor, because some of this is simply beyond my comprehension, or ability to identify.

I'm still waiting about the Scootaloo image. I had hoped to use it for this review.
>> No. 117743
File 134616449849.jpg - (3.91KB , 126x127 , 535689_3594722039823_1626625739_2878124_1142754651_n.jpg )
Whew, now that I've finally gotten all the long stories out of the way, that--eek, growing--queue shouldn't get much longer. I think I'll claim >>116778 this. It looks like Anon claimed it though. Was it dropped? Eh, I'll take a look anyway, it's in the unclaimed list after all.
>> No. 117745
>As for the last bit, I think I'll leave his metamorphosis in there (as I feel that is important) and take out most of the other stuff and just go right into RD's journal. The only problem I have with that is she doesn't really talk (or write I assume) like Rarity. I don't want to lose the gothic-y-ness of the writing, but I also think that jumping straight into her journal would do what the ending does already, only better, and in a more implied way.
I was thinking on that myself. I had meant to suggest including a description of the Visitor's pegasus form in the Dash entry, and trusting the reader to make the leap. As for the tone... Perhaps the Dash entry could read like a hastily-scrawled note, almost damning in its simplicity? Do take my ideas with a grain of salt, though; as the post below yours keenly illustrates, I am far from infallable.

>If it's not too much trouble I'd ask that in a day or two you take another look at it to see the changes I will have made. I'm not asking for another review, simply a "cursory glance" and for some of your thoughts.
'Twould be my pleasure.
>> No. 117746
File 134616762165.jpg - (13.38KB , 244x207 , righto.jpg )
Nothing seems off. I suppose that the fic was of above-average quality, since most of your suggestions are tweaks which work to improve rather than fix. Everything made sense, although I don't have context to back this opinion up; I'd say you did fine. ^_^
>> No. 117747
File 134616775151.jpg - (3.42MB , 794x1004 , 134562572823.jpg )
Title: Harmony Reborn

Tags: [Adventure] [Dark] (I'm hesitant to use this tag, as the dark themes of the story are mainly alluded to and not addressed directly, but better safe than sorry)

Word Count: 14,727

Synopsis: In the steampunk future of Equestria, any signs of harmony in the city of New Canterlot have been replaced by corruption, greed, sickness and lust for power. 6 unlikely ponies will unite in their search to find out what happened to the Elements and the Ponies that represented them, in hopes of reviving harmony and saving their home.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1kF_vOt-xa_JfCXpXtuIw0chHwDCEurs48gA-Pyxx1lY/edit

Comments: Yes, it's a long one, and just the first part of a much-longer fic to come. If the size seems too daunting, feel free to simply review the prologue and first 6 chapters, which introduces the main characters individually
>> No. 117751
File 134617052840.jpg - (97.47KB , 900x900 , rarity_of_the_night_sky_by_johnjoseco-d3hvq2y.jpg )
> I had meant to suggest including a description of the Visitor's pegasus form in the Dash entry, and trusting the reader to make the leap.
Damn, I really like the idea of having a Dash journal to end the story. It would really add to the horror, and leave a lot for the reader to think about. Everything would be up to the reader to infer on their own, using hints and breadcrumbs left in the story. It's too bad though, I really liked the description of how he changes form. I wanted to make it clear that he wasn't a Changeling, that he was something far more sinister. I'm not sure how I would keep that in there and still only write through journal entries. I suppose I'll keep a copy of what the story looks like before I make huge changes and then I can compare the two.

> As for the tone... Perhaps the Dash entry could read like a hastily-scrawled note, almost damning in its simplicity?
I like that idea: "Damning in its simplicity." It'll be interesting to write that, though, I imagine, somewhat challenging. Well, here goes nothing.
>> No. 117752
File 134617073305.jpg - (94.15KB , 720x480 , gundam-0080-05-kampfer-cockpit-post-battle.jpg )
Ouch. Damn. I'd rather been hoping that MintyRest was joking about that whole "kiss-of-death" thing.

>(Spoon laughter phrasing).
I was shooting for the sort of documentary-esque narrative aside that some of my favorite British authors use. Not sure where I fumbled it, but I'll give 'er another look.

>(Spoon: talking heads)
I'd hoped that the action within Blueblood's tale would serve... Hrm...

>(Spoon: info dump/no story progress.)
Weird... If anything I was afraid that I wasn't providing enough info there... I admit it's not an action-y scene, but I was shooting for character revelation/development, which I'd always heard was the other viable use for a sentence.

>There should be a comma after bay.

>The scene where Caramel gives a tour of the Celestia also bugs me. It’s an info dump
Yeah, I--
>and seems to serve no purpose other than to deliver Apple Bloom’s line: Full of surprises.
Bwuh? B-but the hint that Caramel was a changeling! I--aw, hexagonal nuts!

>Urgh– LUS. Just say “she”.
No argument here. Onto the Edit List!

>[Mac's reaction to the song] adds nothing to the story.
Damn. I was shooting for more characterization.

>I didn’t even read this section. Wall o’ text. Not touching it until you fix that.
Agh, my tears--! It's not a bug, it's a feature!

>Nice Sleep number joke. That got a chuckle.
Wha--? Oh, right. That was totally intentional.

> And at this point I also think I have RD’s feather flu about figured.
You're close enough as makes no difference.

>This right here is the epitome of tell. Lose it.
Yeah, it bugged me during the writing phase. As with the rhetorical question in my synopsis, though, when I pull it it feels like there's a gap there and I don't know how to fill it.

>Heh, figures Spitfire would be the CAG.
"Was there ever any doubt?" --Trixie

>This section is another info dump. I can see the importance of mentioning the reason for Scootaloo’s flightlessness, but don’t take so long getting there.
But characterization... [Sighs.] Moving on.

>You’re telling me that Twist is in the military too?!
Eeeyup. Payin' for culinary college with the G.I. Bill.

>You’ve got an extra word there, and that period should be a comma.
The extra word is going on the Edit List. The period was intentional, as it's an abbreviation.

>You’re trying to show offense at Spitfire’s error, but she never said “it”, she said “your dragon”.
Yeah, Minty caught that one too. I haven't had time to hit the local library for an editing run, though; sorry about that.

>Should be “far”.
Oooh, good catch! Onto the Edit List!

>You really need to work on spacing out your paragraphs; a lot of these are very large blocks of text.
Eh?! I thought I was chopping them too finely...

>I do hope you’re going to explain how he knows about that.
Only via implication. Sweetie told Rarity and--as established earlier--Rarity and Blueblood are close quill-pals.

>Comma after waited
So I'm actually underdoing commas? Wow... Teen me wouldn't recognize my writing.

>And then another random and seemingly pointless flashback, after an equally insignificant trigger. These are getting annoying.

>You also might want to unjustify your text. Short sentences like: Apple Bloom took a deep breath.
End up looking like: Apple Bloom took a deep breath.
Your example derped, but I think I got the gist. The thing is, before I justified readers were staying away in droves claiming that the whole fic was a wall of text.


>Okay, seriously why? What possible reason could you have for this? Maybe I’m just intruding with my own opinion on this shipping but I do not see what this adds to the story at all. As much as it explains the previous behavioral tidbits, it further labels them all as pointless, and of needing to be deleted.
Well, there's two reasons, see, and hopefully only one will sound insane:

1) I figured it explained AB's interest in various magical arts--like the ones responsible for Scoot's wings--and why she'd work on the Ponystar Project.

2) Apple Bloom told me so. I hadn't been planning to ship her at all--and as you can see in Night 1 Act 1, Twi's actually interested in Fluttershy--but I try to trust my characters.

>I know you think it’s a clever line, but it’s only serving to confuse your reader.

>Clichés are a no-no in writing unless they’re absolutely necessary; cut those last three words.

>Your overall Plotline is excellent
>but you weigh it down with far too many pointless details, and while I can’t find anything technically wrong with your writing style, it’s not the most attractive narrative voice.

>Touch this up a bit, and then find a really good editor, because some of this is simply beyond my comprehension, or ability to identify.
Yeahhhh... That "editor" thing is a big roadblock to me. My phone hates GDocs--or maybe GDocs hates me--and as near as I can tell all the editor-types here only take GDocs. I know it ain't your job, but I don't suppose you could point me somewhere?

>I'm still waiting about the Scootaloo image. I had hoped to use it for this review.
Heh, I'm glad you still like that, at least. Well, along with the plot and the accidental sleep number joke.

Pic related, but thank you for your time and your Honesty, Minjask.
>> No. 117759
File 134617966874.png - (134.29KB , 958x833 , 133989007148.png )
I need to read this. It's been a while since I looked in on one of Minty's reviews. This should be interesting.

As for your paragraphs, most of them were fine, but there's a lot of them like this one:
“…and though we have lost some, through your heroism we have saved more…” Applejack tried to tune out Commander Agrippa’s gravelly voice. The stallion’s speech had been going on for about five minutes now, and the whole thing had just been a string of condolences and congratulations. It wasn’t that she had a problem with either of those. Celestia knew that there was a need for condolences, especially seeing as how a lot of the folks aboard the ship were Ponyville natives same as her. Applejack was also all for congratulating and thanking the brave pegasi who had struggled—and in some cases died—to save their neighbors and kin. The problem as Applejack saw it was that the Commander never stepped up and apologized for the deaths he had caused when he had quit the fight. She didn’t know who Agrippa thought he was tricking by avoiding the subject. While Applejack herself had been out cold during the evacuation, a conversation she’d overheard revealed that everypony else had heard the Commander’s orders and Major Spitfire’s desperate pleas.
are a bit of a read. My general rule of thumb is that if it takes up more than six lines of text, it's time for a new paragraph.

>>You’re telling me that Twist is in the military too?!
>Eeeyup. Payin' for culinary college with the G.I. Bill.
... No comment.

>Well, there's two reasons, see, and hopefully only one will sound insane:
Call me crazy, but the only one that makes sense to me is the second one.

as for an editor... I've got nothing. There have been two ponies that have offered to edit for me in the past, and they were quite good, but I don't remember how to contact them, so I guess I can't help there. Honestly though, for editing purposes, a text editor such as GDocs is a must, unless you'd care to save the whole thing into a .txt or .docx file and send it via email.
>> No. 117760
Title--Tail: A Story of Time and Forgiveness

[email protected]


The alicorns have been struck by a fatal illness, and Twilight and her friends must find the cure: a panacea hidden in the deepest reaches of Tartarus. But Tartarus is unnavigable to those who cannot withstand the chaos in its depths, and the spirits of harmony are no exception. In order to obtain this cure, Twilight and company will need to find ponies who can traverse Tartarus, a task that will take them to the edge of the world and back. Supposedly, these ponies have two things in common: they've all crossed paths with the mane six, and none of them ever learn from their mistakes.

Inspired by, but not quite based on, Braid.

Link (Gdoc)--https://docs.google.com/document/d/14cAZx32VRT9f7u6xFQTWn_Cl3FbzzXDrzQIqgvKVs7s/edit

Comments--I'd like to request that Minjask review this chapter, since he reviewed the first one. Still, if you've got a good eye for errors, please feel free.

Also, I'll be posting this story on MintyRest's review thread sometime soon. Additionally, this chapter has previously been looked at by Aquillo.
>> No. 117762
File 134618904248.png - (209.77KB , 600x800 , 4bb0609eec2b2aac4202ef8966345dda-d5010dx.png )

I finished my sweep of chapter 4! I just wanted to let you know here, because I'm not sure how Googledocs handles informing you about comments. I did in fact enjoy it.
>> No. 117763
First of all, let me apologize for posting a reply here and in the old thread (when the review has been posted). Only after posting the reply had I noticed that new thread had already been created.
Mods may delete whichever reply they like. Sorry for necroing.

The reply:
First of all, let me apologize for taking too long to find and comment on your review. And, most of all, thank you for reviewing my story in so much detail. :)

Firstly, I was surprised that you took your time to actually mention parts that didn't totally suck. Now, I may not write very much, and even when I do I rarely get the works published. Even more rarely do I ask for a review. And let me tell you--yours was invaluable. :)

I'm going to let you in on a little secret of mine. I'm not a native English speaker, and one of the points of me writing pony fiction is to practice my writing skills. Hence, I consider your part of the review focused on grammar the most valuable. Yes, commas do prove to be a problem, I will have to work on them more.
The toast... *facehoof* I won't even comment on it. :)
Flowerpots... how do you call those that don't contain dirt but only flowers and water? Vases? Will have to check that again sometime. :P

Plot - yeah, I agree 100% with what you said.

Characterization - I agree too. I majorly screwed this up and would have to fix it if I truly cared for this story. ;)

Finally, if I may give you an advice in return... Your review is very consistent, informative (for me, the writer) and simply invaluable. You have not crushed my ego (do I even have one? :P ) or anything. Why, if I had been afraid of that, I wouldn't have asked for a review in the first place. :)
What I'm trying to say is that you don't have to keep apologizing for bashing a story. I asked you to do it, hadn't I? :) ? And you truly did an amazing job with the review of my story, for which I am extremely grateful.

During the characterization you wrote: "I've been a royal bastard for this part, and I dare anyone to say otherwise."

I do say you hadn't been. :D You did an amazing job, pointed out what you liked, and what you didn't like and why, thus allowing me to keep your valuable advices in mind when attempting to write another stories in the future.

So--a little bit of confidence in yourself. :) Once again, you review was invaluable to me, and I'm very grateful you had decided to do it.

Sincere thanks and see you around again (hopefully).
>> No. 117764
This is a reply to: >>115515

Once again, sorry for useless post. I find it extremely hard to navigate around this kind of boards. :(
>> No. 117766
My Little Pony: Shards of Hope

by Bed Head

[email protected]

Tags: Adventure, Dark (more to be safe than anything else)

Synopsis: Set three-hundred years in the future, Equestria has fallen under the rule of chaos. The world outside of Canterlot and a few villages scattered across the country is dangerous wilderness, much like the Everfree Forest was. After an attack on Canterlot, three siblings caught up in the incident are sent forth to find the long lost Elements of Harmony in order to protect the city.


Not looking for any particular chapters to be reviewed, I'd like them all to have some feedback if possible.

I did attempt to submit to EQD and was rejected, what follows is the comments sent by the pre-reader.

- General grammar errors:
•Missing commas
•Mispunctuated dialogue
•Hyphenating words that shouldn't be hyphenated
•Not hyphenating words that should be hyphenated
•Hyphens where there should be em or en dashes
•Capitalization issues
- General awkward phrasing:
•Minor cases of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, where you say "the (color) (pony type)" instead of a name or pronoun in an obtrusive manner
•Using more phrases in one sentence than can be comfortably read
•Using more words in one phrase than can be comfortably read
- Missing spaces between paragraphs every so often.

- Physical description taking away the spotlight from the actual narration at points.

- So much physical description. Ponies are judged not by the color of their coats, but by the content of their character. If there's more about what hue their eyes are than about how they act, that's a problem. The introduction of each character feels less like story and more like character bio.

- Using the structure "Someone A did something, Someone B doing something else" when the first and second somethings are tenuously unrelated. Similarly, using the structure "Someone did something A, that someone's something B being something C" in such a way that the second part should probably deserve its own sentence.

- Character overload. There are at least five characters being introduced in one scene. It's difficult to keep track of who's who. In addition, the characters feel kind of like talking heads. There's little if any action outside of dialogue, and the dialogue itself seems like idle chit-chat.

(I'm glad he was harsh, literally nobody else was giving me any feedback on this except a friend of mine who has written stories with me before. First time posting to Ponychan, so thanks a lot to anyone that helps me!)
>> No. 117768
File 134619214369.jpg - (30.00KB , 486x373 , 1288538496264-_n1318683943231_.jpg )
Thanks for the positive review review!

Aye, The Box was a strong showing. It helped me as a reviewer that the author stated his intent clearly and early, too; to paraphrase the Samurai, the author's intent is the soul of a piece.
>> No. 117772
File 134619609391.png - (150.57KB , 800x605 , 1341442762296.png )
>to paraphrase the Samurai
Does he keep a collection of his sayings, or you just have to catch them as they come?

>pic unrelated and post saged because non-relevant and joke.
>> No. 117774
File 134619710700.png - (223.30KB , 900x830 , Rainbow Dash133692663501.png )
Two things: 1.) Questions like these are why we have the #fic IRC. And 2.) Saging you posts still adds to the post limit, bringing us slightly closer to when the thread stops bumping and a new thread has to be made.

And claiming Last Chance so this isn't a needless post. Also, I've learned that it isn't the best idea to ask for a second review from the same reviewer.
>> No. 117783
File 134620247118.png - (23.22KB , 945x945 , shrugponyscootaloo.png )
Unfortunately there's been an enormous derp with my internet lately, specific to Google Documents. I can't load the story without seeing nothing but lines of [object HTMLObjectElement] all across the page, and I haven't yet found a way to fix it. Even my tenacity has it's limits, and I simply won't be able to wade through that. So I must relinquish my claim on this and all GDoc stories until further notice. )':
>> No. 117785
Have you tried downloading a different internet browser, clearing your cookies, or opening your current browser in Safe Mode?
Also, you could open it on a public computer, download it as the document type of your choice, then Email it to yourself or put it on a flash drive for when you get home.
>> No. 117786
File 134620558504.png - (59.15KB , 187x215 , scootawut.png )
I'll try those, although I don't know what "safe mode" means. hopefully this will work.

Also, I'll be looking at this >>117337 as it's on Fimfiction. That's a claim.
>> No. 117787
File 134620622775.png - (252.87KB , 1790x2000 , 5777.png )
Switching to Firefox works. It's so embarrasing to be trotting back to this old thing after I gave it the finger dumped it a few weeks back. I guess I won't be dropping Soul Survivor then. Thanks Ion.

>Now I have two stories at once, this should be fun.
>> No. 117788
My pleasure.
Just stick with old FF. She'll never let you down or give you up.
>> No. 117798
Detailed comments in doc.

I actually don't have much to say. Most of the problems from last time have been cleared up. I like the new scenes added between Compass and Derpy, as it does much more to get the reader invested in those characters. The main thing still going on is a show-versus-tell problem. I appreciate that you took my advice from last time and abolished many of the -ly adverbs from your descriptions, but you've traded one kind of telling for another. I marked plenty of examples so you should be able to get a feel for it. In addition to such adverbs, it's also telly to use "in/with <emotion>" phrases or otherwise name an emotion directly. Keep those to a minimum.

I do see improvement here. You're on the right track. Keep writing, and have fun with it.
>> No. 117829
File 134625203431.jpg - (8.79KB , 233x216 , 3498564090.jpg )
I always hate picking up stories rejected by EQD, particularly those on their last legs, because one of two things always happens:
1) I find so many errors and the story is so exhausting to even read–-let alone edit or review–-that it makes me wonder what made the author think it was EQD worthy in the first place.
2) I find so few errors that I worry about being able to make a difference.

Your story is the more common of the two: the first one; it’s no surprise that EQD won’t even look at this. I had a hard time myself. “Generally poor descriptions and awkward phrasing” is neither under or over stated, it’s exactly on the dot. A quick run through of the Editors omnibus–-which EQD would have linked you to anyway–-would fix most of your problems here, as would EZN’s guide, or any of the other writing tools lying around here.

Your story is, not very engaging. It’s very telly, you weigh it down with pointless and/or confusing details, and the whole thing looks slapped together as if you didn’t even know where you were headed when you wrote it. Not to mention it moves way too fast, and your dialogue is contrived and hardly believable. Much of your word choice is also questionable, and you lay the prose on thicker than I’ve ever seen. And if it makes my point any clearer, I wrote this review after reading the first 1,000 words of your story. Take a look at the comments I left in the Doc, and send this through at least three other ponies before you even think about EQD again, or I can personally guarantee you it will fail. Better yet, scrap it and start over with a complete rewrite.
>> No. 117830

8/26--Play With Bloody Marey

I'll be claiming this. Sounds like a grand old time.
>> No. 117831
File 134625465455.jpg - (122.36KB , 500x375 , spoiler.jpg )
>I need to read this. It's been a while since I looked in on one of Minty's reviews. This should be interesting.
I hope you find it so. [Smiles.]

>My general rule of thumb is that if it takes up more than six lines of text, it's time for a new paragraph.
Hmmm... Okay, thank you; I'll try to keep that in mind!

>>>You’re telling me that Twist is in the military too?!
>>Eeeyup. Payin' for culinary college with the G.I. Bill.
>... No comment.
I read that and I see [Pic], with me as Dash.

>Call me crazy, but the only one that makes sense to me is the second one.
That's a good kind of crazy in my opinion, heh.

>unless you'd care to save the whole thing into a .txt or .docx file and send it via email.
Oh, that I can do easily enough. Does the "send it" imply "to you", or am I just over-tired?
>> No. 117849
Looking for someone to review this for me. Someone else here did a review for a previous draft and I'm looking for some help for this one. It's a multi-part story but I don't want to move on from Ch.1 until I can make it the best it can be.

Title: Unbroken Steel: Rainbow Dash and Starscream
Name: Mad-Mutt
Tags: Shipping, action, adventure, crossover
Synopsis: A shipping fic between Dash and Starscream done as realistically as possible... no really. They spend most of the time fighting though, it was a romance that was doomed to fail form the start. Based off the Death Battle on Screwattack.com when Dash fought the Decepticon and won. Also has action and adventure.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jOnEslMAzXh9Uchbt-PJF2UHYmaWcMAqAZegamPbZOM/edit?pli=1

I'm a fairly new writer so I hope this is a good read for whoever picks it up. I do tend to make rookie mistakes but I'm trying to get better. I can take criticism so be honest, I need to get better. I am trying to do this little message thing about technology without it being too in your face about it. If anyone reviews this thanks for your time and help.
>> No. 117852

So, your primary concern is comedy? Then I'll start with comedy.

There are parts of your story that had me chuckling. Nothing really put me in stitches, though. I'm not entirely sure why, but I think it's because you're trying to be funny in the same way that the show is funny, which is just a bad idea. See, different types of comedy are funnier in different artistic mediums. What works well in a cartoon just comes across as silly and trite in written form. For example, Twilight grabbing the checklist while Spike's still holding on, accidentally whipping him into the side of the house? That would be hilarious on television. In writing, not so much. You should focus more on comical situations, clever one-liners, and colorfully derisive descriptions, as opposed to straight-up slapstick. Slapstick can be funny, however, if it's rooted in a humorous situation.

Another reason your story might not seem funny is because you try too hard at times. Every now and then, your narrative becomes really convoluted, uninteresting, and hard to follow, as if you're more focused on being funny than on advancing the plot. If a situation is comical, don't draw attention to the comedy; just write the situation, and the laughs will come.

Another thing that might get in the way of how funny you are: suspense. You tend to mix humor into your more suspenseful scenes, which is just a terrible idea. Humor should only come after the suspense has paid off. If you crack jokes willy-nilly, you'll let all the air out of your dramatic build-up, and then your audience will have no idea what to expect from your story in terms of atmosphere.

Alright, I think that's all the advice I can give when it comes to comedy. Now for the more general stuff.

You use way too many dialogue tags, to the point of redundancy. In a two-person scene, it's not that hard for the reader to figure out who's talking, especially when action tags are involved.

And, of course, the said-bookisms. Holy Jesus Taptancing Christ on roller blades, the said-bookisms. Emotion and inflection are already expressed well enough through dialogue alone, you don't need to specify when a character "grumbles" something or "groans" something or "giggles" something or "hisses" something. On top of that, you use so many synonyms of "said" and "asked," it almost reminded me of My Immortal. This is something you seriously need to work on.

Another problem with your story is generally awkward phrasing. You use conjunctions in ways that are stylistically unnatractive. I left a pretty massive comment explaining my thoughts on conjunction-use on your doc, so I won't go into detail here.

Also, your Twilight is extremely out of character. Twilight isn't as easily frightened as you're making her out to be, nor is she as colloquial or casual. She does not use words like "sorta" or "kinda." I go into more detail in my doc contents.

Attend to the noted issues above, and this could actually be a pretty good story. Not my cup of tea, exactly, but still good.
>> No. 117858
First of all, thank you for the review and especially on the tips for the humor. I'll get to the changes when I can.

I have to ask though, since I've never heard anyone else use the term before: What are "said-bookisms" exactly? Synonyms for the word "said"? And I understand not using as many speech tags, but I've never heard that using an alternative to "said" is a bad thing.
>> No. 117864
File 134627181829.jpg - (23.90KB , 360x316 , omg.jpg )
Ok, This is mine!! I was literally tripping over my fingers when I read this request. (How does one trip over his fingers? I have no idea.)

I'll get back to you on this as soon as I can. Can't wait to read, seems interesting!!!! You should tell me your email so that I can contact you.
>> No. 117870

Yeah, it wouldn't seem like it would be a problem, but it is. See, readers usually gloss right over short, simple tags like 'said' or 'asked,' as long as you don't use them too often; they tell the reader who's talking without pulling them away from the dialogue. Words like 'exclaimed' and 'recited,' however, are very salient, and draw your reader's focus away from what's important. Besides, dialogue should speak for itself; I should be able to tell how something is said simply be reading it.

When tagging dialogue, your language needs to be as unobtrusive as possible. Use mostly action tags, with a small number of 'said's' and 'asked's.' If you want to make things a little more colorful, it's okay to throw in commonplace words like 'yelled,' or 'whispered,' as long as you use them as infrequently as possible. Also, when using those action tags, try not to write them in between every sentence of dialogue. It really breaks the flow of things.

The term "said-bookism" has a bit of a history. See, way back when, using those ordinary dialogue tags was considered unfashionable. So, if you were a writer, you could send in for a said-book: a book containing every conceivable alternative to the word 'said.'

For more info on said-bookisms, click this link: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/SaidBookism
>> No. 117909
File 134627944642.png - (54.37KB , 202x250 , 25667809453.png )
A little over-tired is my guess. As much as I enjoyed your story--although that's not obvious by reading my review--I'm trying to blow through the queue at the moment, and have little extra time to spend. I will be adding your story to my favorites list, however, if I haven't already
>> No. 117914
So NumberNine99, did you ever finish the review for Lunar's story? I'm not sure if we just missed amongst the thread changes or whatnot. :o
>> No. 117930
File 134628568052.png - (174.15KB , 782x1106 , derpy_hooves_vector_by_chiko997-d3j9719.png )
Huzzah for sleep deprivation!

Thanks for clearing that up, though.

Once my next chapter is up*--as I don't multitask well--I'll start grabbing stories here again myself.

*I'll do that second skim of The Box sooner rather than later, though, Mr. Magnet.
>> No. 117931

When I opened up LunarShadow's Gdoc, I found a note telling me that he had found another reviewer for Mines of Equestria. I closed it up, and never gave it another thought. I guess he forgot to have his story retracted from the queue; that, or he expected me to do it for him. Sorry for the trouble.
>> No. 117937
I don't usually give out my e-mail out of general paranoid but since you're willing to help me out.
Here you go:
[email protected]

Feel free to be as honest as you need to be in the review its the only way I'll get better.
>> No. 117942
File 134628860013.png - (169.99KB , 1190x1111 , the_great_and_powerful_trixie_by_flutterknight-d4s8o63.png )
Much appreciated.

Also claiming You'll Never Know Until You Try so as to not make this a useless post.
>> No. 117944
Did you know? you can put your email in the email field, and nopony will see it unless they click on your name. Notice mine?
>> No. 117946
Please enter your fic into our queue via the submission form. Link is at the top of the thread under "For writers."
>> No. 117948
*Face Palm!*
Thanks for the tip buddy.
>> No. 117965
File 134629445173.png - (77.38KB , 257x221 , 134534730064.png )
Whew, reviewing is hard when you’ve got a roommate that just happens to like the exact same TV shows as you. Minus MLP of course. :( Soon.

Okay, first off: lose the Author’s note. It’s not part of the story, and if at all included it should be in the comments below.

>Just had the quill barely graced the parchment, a loud knock broke her freshly-made concentration.
… I… actually don’t know this one. You’ve stumped me; I can’t figure out if this is correct or incorrect.

>they finally were mailed out here!
It would be “they were finally mailed out here” except that Twilight would exclaim that they have arrived, or that they are here. Consider your reaction when you receive that latest video game you preordered months ago. Do you say “It was finally mailed!” Or do you say “It’s finally here!”?

>Just mentioning those two letters got a pair of purple ears perked up.
I’m not sure if you’re trying to use “perked up” as an adjective or a past tense verb. If it’s the latter, then you could leave it, but if it’s the former, it ought to be

>Twilight kept going on, but that was all the further Dash actually listened.
A better way to say this would be that Dash had stopped listening.

>What was the weird noise she heard?
Because this has not been previously mentioned, this would be “that”, and you might put this in italics if it’s a thought, but that’s not required.

>Don’t fly too close to it, just look from a big distance.
A big distance? No, I believe you’d be trying to say a good distance, or a safe distance, as far as American English goes.

> Twilight barely got the last bit in before blue streak took off towards the menacing mountain.
I believe her name is Rainbow Dash, not blue streak, unless of course that’s LUS. You’ve also got some purple prose here.

>Even at her speeds, it still took a few minutes to get near the base of the mountain.
A better way to say this would be “Fast as she was, it still too Rainbow Dash a few minutes to arrive at the base of the mountain” although I’m fairly certain it would only take about a minute, if that.

>By this point, over half the surface of it was covered in an angry red that threatened to consume anything that got too near. The few trees that dared grow on its slopes seemed to regret that decision as one touch from the heaving molten mass sent their branches aflame. An ominous cloud formed above the peak, forcing her to fly close the ground. She only had a few minutes before the ash would be raining down onto her.
It should be set their branches aflame, and purple prose galore!

>As fun as it is being stranded about to be burned to death, can you get me out of here?!?”
It should be stranded and about to be burned to death, and that interrobang is highly unnecessary, just use a question mark.

>While she didn’t seek out trouble as much as before she would still help anypony who needed saving.
There needs to be a comma after before.

>she exclaimed with a dramatic pose. With a flap, she swooped her head down under him and plopped him down on her back.
A number of things are wrong with this.
1) “dramatic pose” is telly.
2) You used “with a x” twice in a row. Not good.
3) “she swooped her head down under him” is awkward phrasing.
4) How did she “plop” him down on her back by swooping her head down under him? He would already be on her back methinks.

>With a big flap, she took off away from the mountain.
Tack this on to that last one; you’ve used the same opener again, and this is also awkward phrasing

>Be glad I came out here! Where would you be if I wasn’t here to save your sorry flank?”
Well fuck you too, bitch! Rainbow Dash is being a bit of an ass by saying this; this retort is usually in defense of oneself, but no accusation was made. Try “Lucky for you I came out here. You’d be a puddle right now if I hadn’t.”

>“Whoa-Whaaaa!” was all the stallion on her back managed.
We already know he’s on her back–-which would kind of make flying difficult, as it could obstruct the wings–-cut those three words.

>Most ponies aren’t used to being lifted off the ground and sped away.
You don’t say.jpg

>You must not be from around here then are you?
It should be “you must not be from around here” or “you’re not from around here are you?” pick one.

As much as it’s used today, this is actually bad grammar; “anyways” is just a form of slang, but you should cut it anyway.

>Rainbow Dash struggled to keep a slow pace. It wasn’t even that far of a run, and yet looking at Twilight covered in sweat told Rainbow all she needed to know about her purple friend’s endurance.
It wasn’t even that far of a run could be added to the previous sentence instead, with a semicolon. Rainbow Dash would most likely be flying, and the second sentence could use some work. Try “But seeing her friend sweat so easily told Rainbow all she needed to know about Twilight’s endurance.”

>Rarity was even farther behind, barely breaking more than a canter and fussing with her mane.
Try barely moving at more than a canter, or barely breaking out of a canter.
>Seriously, why did this crazy pony want unicorns to come help with…whatever?
Even to Rainbow Dash that should be obvious.

>If it was Applejack with her they’d be out there already!
Cut “with her”

>Anyways, why are we running out here?
It should be, “Why are we running out here anyway?”

>I know that pony told you get get some unicorns, but he just disapeared you said! So why are we running out to meet nopony at all?” Twilight huffed.
>“I agree with Twilight. Natural disaster or not, I see no good reason to ruin my hooficure running willy-nilly after some stallion that you dropped on the way to town!”
>“Hey, I didn’t drop him! He jumped off! How was I supposed to deal with some crazy pony like that? Come on, even if he doesn’t have a plan, I still don’t want to leave him out there. What if he did get hurt jumping and I just didn’t find him? I can’t just leave a hurt pony out there especially with a volcano headed this way!”
Their lack of concern for the molten lava headed for Ponyville concerns me. Also you’ve got a double “get” up there and one of them is supposed to be a “to”.

>Extending upward about six feet, a large wall was now blocking the road out.
Try, “Standing about six feet high, a large wall now blocked the road.

>It extended less than fifty feet out to the left of where they were, but only a short ways to the right of Rainbows accidental discovery.
I am less than fifty feet tall, as is an ant.

>“I think I’ve got it! This circle has to be a drawn spell designed to make this wall! These lines here represent growth, and this symbol here implies its an earth magic spell. Then, if you look at this section, it has to-”
.“Enough about that! Lets just get this guy inside the town! We gotta get him over to the nurse!” Rainbow stomped at the ground and bit at the tail of the still sleeping unicorn, ready to drag him all the way over there herself.
>“Now careful Rainbow! I agree he definitely needs medical attention soon. Twilight, are you coming with? You really should get back in here as well.” With a bit of magic, Rarity grabbed the stallion’s head so at least that would stay off the dirt as he was dragged, wiping off a bit more ash as she went along.
You aren’t mentioning the speaker, and while they can be deduced through logic, nopony wants to think that hard when they’re trying to enjoy the story. Also, when Rarity “grabs” this pony’s head, how is she doing so? You should describe that.

>With another glow, she popped herself off the wall, staggering a bit. Shaking it off, she headed back into town to see what else she could do to help.
>staggering a bit. Shaking it off
Try not to stack descriptors like that; you could end the first sentence with “and staggered a bit.”

>Rarity stopped to look at the colt in her care once again. After Nurse Redheart gave him a few bandages for some of the burns, it was high time this pony was cleaned up in her mind.
You should rearrange those two sentences. Switch the first period with the comma in the second sentence, and cut “in her mind”.

>With the faucet gently flowing, she began her work of gently washing his mane.
Don’t use adjectives twice like that; get rid of one of those “gently”s.

>She was more than happy to help carry this pony over to the bath, dainty work like this was more Rarity’s style.
Sounds like there should be a conjunction of some sort after that comma. I recommend “but”.

>While he is unconscious now, he’ll probably wake up tomorrow but completely unable to cast spells.
Remove the “but”, and possibly add a comma.

>Anyhow, wherever he did learn that magic it did come in mighty handy.
Did and did, pick one.

There are several more instances of anyways, that should be anyway. Here is a find and replace[i] gun, use it wisely.

>was all he managed to get out before bouncing his way down the staircase, landing with a thud and right back unconscious.
Don’t say that’s what he managed to get out, just say what happened to cause him not to finish.

>“Rainbow Dash! What a horrible thing to say! Some ponies are just no good, what’s the matter with you?!”
“Rarity! What a horrible thing to say! What’s the matter with you?!”

>Certainly it’s a good idea to keep him away from Twilight Sparkle for a bit given whatever history there may be there, but we must at least be gracious! He has to be at least a somewhat decent pony, he did help save the town, and injured himself to do so! So whatever you plan on doing afterwards, I for one plan on having some breakfast ready for him when he awakes.
Twilight’s full name should not be used by her friend in a non-formal setting, and you just used “at least” twice in a row.

>Making her way up the stairs, Rarity did have to wonder what if Rainbow Dash was right?
Making her way up the stairs, Rarity had to wonder if Rainbow Dash was right.

>Still, she supposed, he deserved at least a chance to prove himself.
saying “she supposed” makes this sound funny. You should cut it.

> If nothing else, she was determined to try and find out what his apparent grudge with Twilight was about.
No, Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try. And also you should cut apparently.

>When you’re ready, there’s breakfast downstairs if you feel hungry
>When you’re ready
>if you’re hungry
pick one

>“Uh, bye, I guess. He must be late or something.”
Rarity never mentioned Spike, so who is Terra referring to? Wow, I just realized Terra is also the name of my second favorite Tara Strong character.

Judging by his reaction to Twilight, compared to that of the others, I’m guessing Terra is insanely jealous of Twilight, specifically in that she inadvertently stole some dream of his.

>But anyway out of town would take either bits, or four working hooves.
Lose the anyway, change the “but” to an “and”, and maybe tack it on to the previous sentence as well.

>he glanced up to see he was close the town entrance.
Should be “he glanced up to see that he was close to the town entrance”

>Hobbling forward, he made his way to the sudden shift in terrain that sprung up in the past few days.
Should be “that had sprung up”

>Reaching a hoof out, he gave it a quick poke and found it cool to the touch.
I don’t know if you know this, but aside from being so hot it could melt your face off, most lava actually has a very high melting point, and can take weeks to cool off after it has hardened.

>Twilight shock her head slowly as she made her way back to the staircase,

>She watched her friend wipe off the large table
That’s some pretty bad LUS right there, we don’t even know who it is.

>Rubbing the sleep from his eyes, he looked out the window to see Luna’s moon just starting its assent into the sky.
Urgh! Copy/paste time!
[i] You know, I kind of wish there was like a sewer god; then, every time someone takes a shit, they would be taking a _______'s Shit.
May Celestia watch over you, Nick, wherever you are.

>Now it was her turn to be too engrossed in the book, she barely noticed he responded at all.
Try “she barely noticed his response at all.”

>After the old statue was torn down, the new one was almost immediately in its place with no artist name, just the title carved into the base in front of it! It really is a fascinating piece of art, don’t you agree?”
Laying it on a little thick don’t you think? Nothing actually wrong here I just had to comment.

>“Whoo! Who’s ready to party?”
Suddenly, Pinkie Pie is right next to you. What do?

>I’ll let you two lovebirds finish up, then the party’s gonna be in the middle of town
Even if this last scene weren’t random, and out of the blue, and contrived, and an enormous whiplash for the reader… It’s Pinkie Pie. You could at least say “lovey birdies” or something Pinkie-ish.

No problem ^_^
>> No. 117970
Title: Sweet Escape
Author: Bob From Bottles
Tags: Slice-of-life, Comedy
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. Now, she only needs to find a way to let her sister know that the dieting and exercise begins today.
Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Zwl8pirwaDDdaoL3j5Upzzvk451mDxBzZB3GO-daMtQ/edit
>> No. 117991
File 134629879728.png - (209.77KB , 600x800 , 4bb0609eec2b2aac4202ef8966345dda-d5010dx.png )

I'm going to pick this up, DemPonies. Sounds fun.
>> No. 117993
This sounds ridiculous, I have to claim it.
>> No. 117996

I think my claim got lost or something. I'll be taking this one. (Just making sure nopony takes whats mine!)
>> No. 118037
It pains me that things are still like this after all this time. I will take your comments to heart, but I probably won't try EqD again... with anything.
>> No. 118040
File 134632806538.jpg - (26.02KB , 487x629 , spoiler.jpg )
Notes taken while reading:
The wording on the entry for February 9th makes it sound like Rarity disdains or resents the Canterlot noble. I'd generally expect her to react more like she did with Sapphire Shores, but perhaps she's still smarting from the way Jet Set and Upper Crust treated her on Twilight's birthday.

Speaking of Twilight, I quite like the account of her all-too-brief visit, though the very end--
>I feel as though it is compelling me somwhow
--strikes me as a bit too on-the-nose. I'd recommend rewording that bit to sound more like self-justification.

Ah, that Sweetie Belle visit is even better than the Twilight one! I particularly like how the Box drives Rarity to suspect Sweetie of lying; delicious!

Hmmm... It may just be my phone, but the Visitor's letter is experiencing severe paragraph derps. Keep an eye out there if you put this up on FiMFiction or the like.

The picnic denial is another nice touch; so far, so good.

23 February. Yes.

>The box will protect me.
Pic related.

I forgot to say before, but rather than having Rarity remember where she hid the key I'd recommend her "learning" it from re-reading the earlier entries. That strikes me as less sane.

Closing Thoughts:
I recently learned of an old Hollywood saying:

"Cut what you love."

That is: if your tale can be told without a scene, drop the scene.

While I know you love the Visitor's transformation--and I can see why--I think the break from the journal style is too high a price.

Then again, I've spent the last day thinking of reasons not to make cuts on my own fic, so I can't preach too hard, heh.

I'd recommend shortening the Dash entry, partly because I don't see her as much of one for writing and partly to differentiate her further from Rarity. See if you can't condense her entry into--say--seven sentences, excluding the quote from the Visitor.

Well, if I linger here any longer your story will start to reek of Huh?-ness, and while I'm something of a narcissist I'd rather help you bring your vision to life. Thus I will provide no more input, unless one counts hearty cheers from the sidelines.

My pre-reader encouraged me to get several different reviews, and I pass that advice to you. I even have some recommendations, if you're interested:

Minjask can be found here in the Training Grounds and adores Dark fics. If you repost here with a note requesting his attention, he may snap your fic up.

Applejinx and Mintyrest are brutal in their Honesty, which is always a plus in a reviewer. AJ is a specialist in characterization--especially that of the Six--and though Minty is more of a generalist his eyes are likewise keen.

Those three I recommend from experience. The Samurai I recommend based on his sterling reputation, though I've not yet had the pleasure of working with him.

Yon list is by no means exhaustive, of course; feel free to explore the skills of other reviewers.

I must be off now, but I hope that you and your tale fare well.

Sleep well and dream well!
>> No. 118042
File 134632909219.png - (54.37KB , 202x250 , 25667809453.png )
Well, I was going to claim this (>>117032), especially since I read it on Fimfiction last week, but it's already been replied to and appears to have a mini review. Was it missed? I'd be happy to look at it more thoroughly but if it's already been reviewed I'd like to move on to others that haven't yet.

In the meantime, I'll be looking at >>117407
>> No. 118081
File 134633578624.png - (5.31KB , 258x298 , dashslug.png )
>Hmmm... It may just be my phone, but the Visitor's letter is experiencing severe paragraph derps

Must've been your phone. Looks fine to me. But, I will definitely be sure to keep an eye out when I post it to FiMFic. I've been screwed with paragraph derping before, and for seemingly no reason.

>I forgot to say before, but rather than having Rarity remember where she hid the key I'd recommend her "learning" it from re-reading the earlier entries.

I like that, I'll be implementing that for sure.

>I think the break from the journal style is too high a price.

Yeah, I agree. It seems very out of place (which is unfortunate). I've removed it and left the story to be told only through journal entries.

>I'd recommend shortening the Dash entry

Yeah, I was just thinking that last night. I've gone ahead and shortened it to what I feel are the essential bits.

Also, I'll be taking your advice and doubling this post as a review request; specifically a review from Minjask, if he'll have me. I don't think I'll re-enter it into the queue though, it doesn't seem necessary... I guess. Anyways, if Minjask doesn't want to review it, or is too busy (which would be fine) then I'll probably check out some other review threads.

Oh, and I don't particularly need a full-review (I think), just more-or-less what Huh? already did for his second look. I just want a second (or third, really) opinion on the fic. Specifically, I'm a little worried that the scenes with Rarity ignoring her friends might escalate too quickly.

A thousand thanks to Huh? for his most generous double (sort of) review and a preemptive thanks to Minjask, even if he doesn't choose to give it a look.

Also, here's the link again.

>> No. 118095

And when I say "another reviewer," I mean he found a replacement reviewer, and that I wouldn't need to review his story. Sorry for not making that clear in the first post.
>> No. 118114

Alright, thanks for telling me. I didn't know cause the story was sitting there for ever so long. :o
>> No. 118115
File 134635077862.png - (27.87KB , 280x280 , marty-huggins-it-s-a-mess-the-campaign-sleeveless-tank-top_design.png )
Pic very much related...

Hmm, where do I start?
I don't want to sound mean, but, this story... it's a mess.
It is filled with awkward phrasing and odd dialogue that isn't really believable. Three OC's that are basically hipster ponies, whom I hated as soon as I read their description (although I get the feeling that was the point). Anyways, here are some examples of things that left me utterly confused as to what the **** was going on.

>"Yes, of course it's yours! Twilight and I just knew you would love to have a touch of music while you're in the air practicing for the next Young Flier's Competition. So I insisted, and while I acquired the device, she ordered the music subscription."
This is confusing for several reasons. First off, there was no dialogue tag. I was able to figure it out after re-reading, and because I'm not an idiot, but it was not immediately apparent who was talking, which it should be. Also, I can't pinpoint why, but this just reads really weirdly to me. That's a major theme with this fic; inexplicably confusing dialogue and narration.

>"They're based on an amazing new technology," Twilight commented with detached fascination. "All the music propagates silently from the DJ cloud in Cumulustino in the form of metaphantasm irregularities! The crystalline substructure of the leyline mainboard in each unit only resonates with patterns passing through it if they match the patterns embedded in the superstructure!"
I understand that you're trying to make a joke here, and you're next line makes that apparent, but all it does is serve to confuse the hell out of the reader and, in my case at least, bore them.

>Rainbow Dash raised an eyebrow, but continued smiling.
I dunno, but in my mind's eye that makes for an awkward facial expression.

>"Um...If you like, I could pitch in for another channel," Fluttershy said meekly.
Suddenly Fluttershy...
>"Ah could too," Applejack added.
And then Applejack...
>"Me three!" Pinkie squeaked.
… and Pinkie?
You said nothing about those three being there before now and they're suddenly talking. I realize that you said that RD was 'surrounded by her friends' but you made it seem like that was only Twilight and Rarity. At least give some indication that all of 5 of them are there. You could say she was surrounded by 'her five friends', I dunno.

>Rainbow Dash's voice carried the resoluteness and amiable air of the loyalty she embodied.
Ugh, this line makes me cringe for some reason.

>"You may even grow to enjoy it, the way Applebloom's favorite singers grew on me, even though them demons used to annoy me to my wits' end."
Really? Applejack thought of those singers as 'demons'? Doesn't that seem a bit harsh?

>“Hey Fluttershy, that gives me an idea! You know, I’ve got a few guilty pleasures I don’t think I’ve shared with you!” Pinkie Pie said.
The way you talk about this music throughout the rest of the story makes it seem like they're less 'guilty pleasures' and more 'the only sh*t I listen to'.

>"And now," she said as she lifted off, "let's have some tunes!"
Please stop referring to the music as 'tunes', it's really grating (in my opinion).

>The device responded to her vocal command [...] in preparation for her routine.
Oh boy, this whole paragraph was difficult to read. I know what you're going for, but my god, that was... that was not it.

Alright, I'm going to stop here. This was only the first few pages and I only pointed out some of the stuff I had problems with. Basically, this thing needs major revision and editing. I brought up the lack of dialogue tags in that first quote, but it persists throughout the fic. I understand not wanting to overuse them, but when there are 6 ponies in the room and they're all talking... you need to tag your dialogue. Also, you use exclamation marks like they're periods. I ctrl+f'ed and you had 61 of those suckers. That's way too many, seriously! Exclamation marks should be used sparingly! Or else they lose their impact! Do you see what I mean!

>(passage wherein Fluttershy listens to Pinkie’s music again, and begins to enjoy it)
Perhaps you should finish writing your first chapter (I assume that's what this is) before submitting it for review. Merely a suggestion.

Also this:
>They each took a plug, rubbed them on their coats and inserted them.
I understand the context, and yet, it still sounds... weird.

One thing I will give you is that this was more-or-less free of spelling and (most) grammatical errors, at least that was what I got from my quick read-through. Anyways, I suggest reading this fic out-loud to yourself and see what sounds awkward. Then, change it, make it sound like what a normal person would say, or think. But, keep in mind that I am but one person, and am by no means a professional reviewer (and not even a very good writer at that), so you should take what I say with an ocean of salt and probably get a review from other people too. Good luck to you.

Freakin' Ponychan 502'ed on me the first time I tried to post this
>> No. 118167
File 134636686073.jpg - (7.14KB , 205x246 , hip.jpg )

Ok, lets see what we got here. Oh, we got best pony Rainbow Dash and a giant transforming robot duking it out in hoofs-on-steel combat. But to make it even better, they’re being shipped together! Man, I’ve got to say, this is the craziest crack pairing I’ve ever seen. But don’t worry, I happen to like my crack. It makes for interesting stories—most of the time, that is.

However, it’s easy to see that you’re fairly new to writing. But thats ok, you’ve got a lot of room to improve.

That being said, I see your story trying desperately to fight its way out of the mountain of punctuation, grammatical, and plot errors that plague it. I won’t be able to touch on everything, but I will give you a good rundown on the problems I see. As a rule of thumb, assume that for every error I list below, there are at least 4 more of the same kind.

Lets begin:

>A shipping fic between Dash and Starscream done as realistically as possible... no really. They spend most of the time fighting though, it was a romance that was doomed to fail form the start. Based off the Death Battle on Screwattack.com when Dash fought the Decepticon and won. Also has action and adventure.

Your synopsis is...lacking. To be honest, its a complete mess. I advise a complete rework of this. Its supposed to be engaging and interesting, but you make yourself sound indecisive about your own story. The synopsis is your advertisement of your story, and I’m just going to assume you want people to buy your product.

Ok, moving on.

Now, I’d say grammar/punctuation is your main problem. It was really hard to find a paragraph without any errors. On that note, you need it's imperative that you learn when to use commas. I swear, if I could get a bucket full of commas and sprinkle them on your story, it would make it 10x better—hoofs down. Another thing to note, the list below is nowhere near a complete list of the errors I found, I’m just giving you an idea of what you can find and fix later.

>Metal rained down on the green and grassy field as the Decepticon named Starscream fell broken and defeated, the little pony with the rainbow mane had used an attack he never saw coming and now he was once again laying before her as she hovered victoriously over him with that smug smile on her blue face.

This, my friend, is a run-on. You need to break this up into multiple sentences. God, it gives me a headache to try and fix this. You can replace the first comma with a period and another period after “coming”. Of course, there are 100’s of other variations you can do as well.

>Again he had underestimated her. Again she had gotten the better of him. Again he had been reduced to a worthless piece of junk at her hooves just like the last time and the time before that.

Replace the periods with commas. It makes the anaphora flow better. Take out “just like the last time and the time before that.” Its redundant. You just said “again” three times, I think we know what happened the last time.

>he had lost count of how many times his master Megatron had called him an idiot a long time ago, not that he ever kept count in the first place that is.

It should be, “his master, Megatron, had called”. Scrap the “a long time ago”, it doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t make sense because the meaning is unclear. It can be read, “Megatron had called him an idiot a long time ago.” However, I think you’re trying to say, “Starscream lost count a long time ago.”

>As Starscream’s body laid there broken his spark (which looked like a little glowing orb to Dash) flew out,

The same mistake as above. When adding extra detail you enclose it in commas or you can use the em dash. You should almost never use parenthesis. Your sentence should look something like this: “As Starscream’s body laid there broken, his spark— a little glowing orb— flew out,”

>In the meantime he would just have to wait and plot his revenge.

You use a comma to set off introductory elements. So you need to place a comma after “meantime”.

>When Starscream asked how he was able to do this the little annoying egghead went into a really long description of how he would change the molecular structures of the objects he was using his magic on and it quickly put the robot to sleep but he got the basic idea of it.


>When Starscream and Sparks first met this mad scientist of a pony he was attempting to poison Ponyville’s water supply

Who is this “mad scientist of a pony” you are referring to?

>that was the beginning of Sparks’ criminal carrier.
*Face palm* The word is career, not carrier. Also, the career belongs to just Sparks so its Sparks’s

>an Alicorn princess named Celestia keep the discovery

Verb conjugation misuse. Celestia “keeps” the discovery.

>Starscream flew out of the nest and shouted, “When I’m back in my body I’m going to break your horn off!”

This does not sound very threatening to me.

>“Just sending a message.” Sparks replied with a wink and Starscream decided to let it end there. Starscream had sent more than a few ‘messages’ in his lifetime.

Learn to punctuate dialogue tags. It should be, “Just sending a message,”.

>There was a hyperactive pink pony that ate so many sweats Starscream

I really hope Pinkie Pie doesn’t eat sweat.

>Rainbow Dash tossed the stick over her should and grabbed Starscream’s spark

This shoulder be self-explanatory. (See what I did there?)

>Dash said, and then blotted off out of sight

Its bolted. She bolted out of sight... I’m starting to get the feeling you didn’t even proofread this at all.

>“I really hate you,” Starscream hissed at her.

Here’s a test, you try and and “hiss” the sentence above... It’s not easy right? Try not to make people/things hiss what they say.

>“Why do you keep fighting that thing Dash, Celestia could probably settle this in no time?” Twilight asked once Rainbow Dash had finished telling her about Starscream.

Heh, Celestia settling anything? That’s a good joke. (This isn’t really an error, but it made me chuckle. )

>whether they be Autobot, Deceptacon


Some other things you should fix are the walls of text. Separate blocks of text that exceed 5 lines into different paragraphs. It becomes tiring to read all that at once.

Even though this is the first part, you should go more in-depth of why Starscream is really here. I didn’t feel any depth in the plot. The fights between the two were quite repetitive as well. Change it up some more.

Final Thoughts:

Man, you’ve got a ways to go before this chapter is in a presentable state, but don’t worry, most of these errors are real easy fixes.

On a lighter note, I did enjoy your characterization of Rainbow Dash. Her banter with Starscream was really amusing. Sparks was a pretty interesting character as well. (I am not very good when it comes to OCs, though.)

All-in-all, the premise of the story seems real interesting and I really want to see it pulled off effectively. You’ve got the potential, but you lack the experience and knowledge to pull it off at this time.

When you need another review be sure to come back here. I’ll be glad to give you another one—if you want me to, that is. Also, if you have any questions/concerns/complaints be sure to ask.

And that’s a wrap.
>> No. 118172
Thanks for the review. You were right about me being new at writing. I did proof read it once but it seems once isn't enough, I guess I should do multiple proofreads in the future. It is a bit disappointing to see this many errors but it just fuels the drive to get better. I'll do my best to fix the errors you pointed out and the others I find and try to make it a more fun read. I do think one problem I have is that I don't feel very confident as I write because I'm so new at it, but I do have fun when I invent the stories in my head and start typing them out.
I am glad you were able to enjoy the story some and I would like to take you up on that offer for another review. Would you be willing to review this chapter again or maybe any other chapters I write or would you prefer a different story. I would like to have this chapter reviewed again after I spend the next couple of weeks or so fixing it the best I can but if you don't want to then that's okay. Let me know what you'd prefer to do. I don't know how long it will take before I ask for another review though, it kind of depends on how things work out.
So yeah this is just the first chapter of a larger story and I want to make it the best it can be and you've helped me out with that. Thanks a lot for your time.
I would like to ask if you think I should remove or add anything to the story other than explaining more about how Starscream got to Equestria. You don't have to do that but it might help.
Thanks again.
Also when you pointed out that thing about Celestia I couldn't help but laugh a little myself.
I'll get to work on my story once I have time available.
>> No. 118174
Wow, even though that wasn't the category of criticism I was asking for (see original request post) that is very useful editorial advice. You found faults that I needed to be aware of and wasn't, that that no one else has elaborated on yet, so thank you kindly.
>> No. 118175
File 134638282339.jpg - (26.23KB , 640x360 , mlfw254_facehoof.jpg )
Note to self: Read original post before writing review.

Sorry about that, I just grabbed the first fic in the queue and didn't read the request post. Oh well, at least you found my review helpful, so I guess that's good. Again, take everything I said with heaps of salt and know that I'm not infallible.One thing that I didn't mention, but should have, was that I do like the premise of your story. I think it could be very interesting if done properly. However, unless the sub-plot of Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie learning to like each other's music becomes more important, then I suggest removing it, or making it more important. It felt unnecessary (again, just my opinion).
>> No. 118176

Thanks for the review! I know this is terrible, thanks for looking over my mediocre story. A couple of questions:

You know, I kind of wish there was like a sewer god; then, every time someone takes a shit, they would be taking a _______'s Shit. ~Nick!Nack.

um...what? This has to be a quote, and I'm pretty sure I've failed a knowledge check to know what its from...

That’s some pretty bad LUS right there, we don’t even know who it is.

LUS? What does LUS stand for?

It should be set their branches aflame, and purple prose galore!

Purple prose? What does that mean?

Those are the only parts I didn't understand from your review, the rest makes sense to me. This needs a lot of work still.
>> No. 118178
File 134638418485.jpg - (13.86KB , 480x360 , spellcard_4.jpg )
If I may.

>You know, I kind of wish there was like a sewer god; then, every time someone takes a shit, they would be taking a _______'s Shit. ~Nick!Nack.
>um...what? This has to be a quote, and I'm pretty sure I've failed a knowledge check to know what its from...
The quote comes from a former member of the board. Essentially it's a delicious way of saying that "Celestia's sun" and "Luna's moon" are silly descriptors.

>LUS? What does LUS stand for?
Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, where excessive descriptors (the lavender unicorn, the yellow pegasus, the white alicorn) are used instead of simple, non-obtrusive pronouns (he, she, they). If your characters have already been described once, pointing out their colours is redundant, especially if it involves the Mane 6 whose colours are already established knowledge.

>Purple prose? What does that mean?
tl;dr, excessive descriptions draw attention away from plot and characters and to themselves - as in, "hey, why is this sentence so overly complicated and hard to digest?".
>> No. 118179
File 134638450721.png - (64.97KB , 1042x766 , saluting_rainbow_dash_by_markfrompoland-d3eytqo.png )

>Would you be willing to review this chapter again or maybe any other chapters I write or would you prefer a different story. I would like to have this chapter reviewed again after I spend the next couple of weeks or so fixing it the best I can but if you don't want to then that's okay. Let me know what you'd prefer to do.

Sure, I'm willing to help you out in any way possible. However, I am just one person. It wouldn't be a bad idea to get some else to review your story as well. Keep in mind though, not everyone is as nice as me.
>> No. 118182

Ah, makes sense. Thanks for that!
>> No. 118183
File 134638790780.png - (209.77KB , 600x800 , 4bb0609eec2b2aac4202ef8966345dda-d5010dx.png )

Alright, I'm done graffiti-ing up your googledocs. There are a lot of specifics and examples there, so here I'll just outline the few things I believe you should keep most in mind as you continue to write (which you definitely should).

1. Take a mighty whirlwind swing of a barbarian axe to your semicolons. Even when they're used correctly, there's so many that they're distracting, and another form of punctuation would usually work better.

2. Go easy on the internal narration. Trust your dialogue and descriptors more. For the most part, I got more out of those than out of the characters speaking to themselves. Don't ditch them entirely of course, but whenever you write one, consider carefully if it's really necessary.

3. I didn't highlight every single instance of shaky grammar. Mostly because that would have resulted in a ton of repetitious comments, but also so you can practice looking for them yourself, and hopefully catch them before you write them in the future. Just bare in mind things like comma splicing, speaker identification, when to capitalize letters when they're around quotes, and where to put the "speaking verbs" in lines of dialogue (usually, the earlier the better).

The first two are much more important to work on than the third, but I believe, and hope, they'll all help.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing what you've got coming next. Keep it coming, DemPonies. :-)
>> No. 118184
Thanks, Bronetheus!

You've been a great help, especially in highlighting which internal monologue is and isn't worth keeping.

I'm glad that the issues I have left seems to be quite easily fixed.

Thanks again for taking your time to review my work. It's been of tremendous help! :)
>> No. 118186
Also, I just now saw your last comment attached to the prologue. While the characters themselves won't return (barring perhaps a few mentions) the details of the treaty they've written will become an important plot point later in (much later). Therefore, I felt the need to introduce it as early as possible, so that it seems like less of an "ass-pull" (as a troper might call it) when it does turn up.
>> No. 118198
File 134642822623.png - (61.02KB , 186x270 , scootaloo tears.png )
I can’t do it. This must be what burnout feels like. I’ve been trying to sit down and read this story for two days, and it’s really interesting, but my mental stamina is just gone, and I can’t focus anymore. This whole thing is totally fun, and I hate to give it up, but I just don’t think I’ll be able to give a quality review anymore, if I can even call half the reviews I gave around here “quality”. I’ll try to pick up a story every couple of weeks to stay active, and I’m willing to follow up with the authors of reviews I’ve finished, but for now, Minjask is gone, and I need to drop Night Errantry. (>>117407)

I’m sorry. I would have loved to have gotten through the queue and pick this up, but I just can’t do this anymore. Reviewing is like the most fun thing ever, because I really love helping everypony, but if my last review is anything to go by, I’ve lost it. I’m really sorry everypony, I would have loved to have helped more, but I just can’t do it.

Well, I at least got 15 reviews out of the way, and nopony has been sitting for longer than a week now.

Since I’m leaving, it might interest some of you to discover that Bleeding Rain!DROPS was me. I picked that name for writing and chatting on other boards, so that Minjask could be my reviewer name.
>> No. 118203
File 134643079095.jpg - (20.28KB , 600x254 , 430322-vlcsnap_00025_super.jpg )
Take a breather, you've earned it. Better to walk away smoking than go out on fire.
>> No. 118206

On further reflection, I think that instead of ditching the prologue, you should do something to remind the reader about the treaty later (like having Twilight come across it, perhaps), maybe a chapter or two before it's going to become important. While "ass-pulls" are bad, so is making the reader go back to your prologue in the middle of the action to understand what's going on (looking at you, George Martin).

I'm sorry to hear that, and not just because it was my fic you were working on. I've only been on here a week and I was already impressed by how active you were in helping us authors out.

It is really important to admit when you think you're burnt out though. Continuing to do something when you're just not feeling it anymore is the. Worst. Possible. Thing! I do hope you return to it some day, both for our sake and because you love it, but I'd say with 15 reviews done, you've more than earned a break.
>> No. 118208

Hey, hey. It's okay. It happens. For what it's worth, I thought you did a good job helping out. 15 reviews is nothing to scoff at.

You'll always be known as Minjask to me. :)
>> No. 118209
File 134643235932.jpg - (38.71KB , 438x512 , 150126_2520-_2520artist-mysticalpha_2520rarity.jpg )
>I just don’t think I’ll be able to give a quality review anymore, if I can even call half the reviews I gave around here “quality”.
Hey, self-deprecation is my shtick; go find your own!

Seriously, though: all of your reviews looked good to me. Sure I disagreed with you on a few points when you reviewed my fic, but I'm a narcissist.

In fact, your reviews were the reason I decided to start reviewing stories myself.

>for now, Minjask is gone
Sleep well, little pegasus.

>if my last review is anything to go by, I’ve lost it.
I must be over-tired again, because I ain't seein' it. I'll trust your judgement, though.

>(Secret Identity.)
Ah, one less secret to keep.

I know you're doing a review hiatus, but will you be visiting /fic/--in either guise--just to hang out?

I hope so.
>> No. 118210
File 134643276551.png - (554.81KB , 965x1400 , hnng_2.png )
Son, you just went and got 15 reviews done in a span of a week or two. That's awesome. Go do something equally awesome and take a well-earned break. Like pick up Touhou. Or something by P.G. Wodehouse, I find his stuff to be absolutely delightful.

Have some amazingly cute Patchy.
>> No. 118211
File 134643320891.png - (248.55KB , 720x720 , mlfw7674-1343593158403.png )
>I would have loved to have gotten through the queue and pick this up
Don't sweat it man. You've done more than enough for this thread already. It's impressive enough that you managed 15 reviews in such a short time.

And, like Huh? said, I thought those reviews were excellent. But, if you were unhappy with the quality than that's your opinion. Only you can decide when you're done, and apparently you have. It's good to know when to fold, that's an admirable trait. Best of luck to you in whatever you do from now on.
>> No. 118213
Welcome to fic. Now you're truly a reviewer. Happens to all of us.

You were Bleeding!Raindrops?!?!!?!!1
>> No. 118216
That sounds like a good idea. I could totally do that.

I wish I could repay you by reviewing your own story. Alas, I have neither the time nor the skill to do such a thing with confidence. I actually saw your story in FiM fiction a while ago and found the premise intriguing. But, again, time :(
>> No. 118217
File 134643906989.png - (422.27KB , 1280x720 , Royal_Guards_saluting_S2E25.png )

I salute you in all your future endeavors, whatever they may be.

Thanks for reviewing my story. It's a shame you won't be able to take a look at chapter two, but if there's one thing I can tell, it's that you've earned a nice, long break. Good luck and godspeed.
>> No. 118220
File 134644227776.png - (209.77KB , 600x800 , 4bb0609eec2b2aac4202ef8966345dda-d5010dx.png )
Hey, don't worry about that. A review is what I came here for, but views, ratings, and/or comments are always welcome too. If you've got time for any of those, that would be really cool too. Not necessary though, because I reviewed out of the goodness of my heart and all that.

Speaking of which, having done a couple reviews on FimFiction and a couple on Googledocs, the relative ease of reviewing on the latter has convinced me to put up a comment version of my story, so whoever picks it up can choose whichever version they like better. There are all six chapters here, but again, the first three are what I'm most concerned with.

1: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1oTdwUoyDVvDGxf1b-QsMlB8iJEKVqO1tQHfRUpa5b7Q/edit
2: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1RmfCRmvC7tumtqkpl4xZu1YnMvrId8Bn4NixCtKPoQU/edit
3: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jzTKMcQu9eXf2HE1gQAMIlMlLoI5c30ESQmEeChJe8M/edit
4: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1i0VrbeULRBQJj1ooSfWoYwYZm4bPX7fQggd4klZeN-M/edit
5: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1csDPpwh4xcts3EcX3NmE77UmPI72kNmzS6bpfkpJ5-o/edit
6: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ukLrgBn2Cp9JvFXhFm866GOtzUIrRprBKW4rR3pd-w4/edit
>> No. 118229
File 134645187185.png - (61.43KB , 400x379 , Sad.png )

I didn't really know you, but you seemed like an awesome person. Good luck out there.

"Keep Calm and Brony On."
>> No. 118241
File 134647159432.png - (934.06KB , 1280x914 , scootaloo_hug_please.png )
If you pay attention to reviews in I've done in the past, compared to those I've done recently, a careful eye can see the difference: In the past, I would always go the extra mile, swapping in suggestions, giving detailed explanations, to make sure I'd done everything I possibly could to help the author. In my latest review, the best I could come up with was snarky sarcastic remarks, and "This is awkward phrasing" comments, and I just can't respect that, not even from myself. Don't worry, I'm not leaving /fic/ entirely, I'll still step in from time to time, but I'm laying down the reviewer card for a while.

Too obvious?
>> No. 118247
File 134647839847.png - (285.72KB , 486x704 , 132641408941.png )
By one: DanSplats

Finally back, writing contest is finally over, and I finally have time to read again. This looks fairly interesting from the synopsis, but a quick peek has left me a touch intimidated. Expect something by the end of the weekend.

>reeeeeaaaaadiiiiiiiiing o.o
>> No. 118248
File 134647905816.jpg - (7.22KB , 275x183 , spoiler.jpg )
Title: Encased in Stone (working title)
Author: Bleeding Raindrops
Email: in the email field
Tags: Dark
Synopsis: Just a regular day of collecting gems, except for a very special Sapphire I found. I just love it, except... wait what?! What’s going on?!
Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/16_d6KgvmZLRyoGV6wsdk1lA4WiY_A4Dq4YK5w8YFZoE/edit

Okay, I know this sounds weird, but this is actually a dream I had two nights ago, no joke. I’m hoping to expand it to at least 2,000 words, and whoever picks this up will be the first pony to see it other than–-you know–-the story forge thread, so it’s going to be pretty bad. I realize the synopsis isn’t the greatest, and I’m working on that, as well as the title. Any helpful suggestions would be most welcome. Thanks in advance.

You also might want to know that the Training Grounds Active Reviewers link in the submission guide actually links to the unclaimed list
>> No. 118249
File 134648050808.png - (112.78KB , 813x896 , 3ede0b348c4376240590cbcac660b067.png )

I'll take this.
>> No. 118273
File 134651272691.jpg - (6.82KB , 199x253 , i_must_go.jpg )
Line by line in doc.

Okay, I'll admit, I ended the first read-through in a sour mood. I skimmed through a lot of the possession sequence, and the whole RD-idiot-ball thing kept me thinking for a good deal today. Then I read through it a second time, and your 180 turn of the fight scene was a pleasant surprise. Seriously, pat on the back for turning it around like that. Do you get it now? Have Twilight do things that matter.

I don't have much to say that I haven't said already. I suppose something that I should note is the wild variation in tone your chapters have. Chapter 1 is based on an episodic format. Chapter 2 is slice-of-life-dream-ish. Chapter 3 is extended fight scene without as much episodic resemblance as chapter 1. It's like having a hand consisting of the ten of clubs, the queen of diamonds and the ace of hearts. They're not bad cards by themselves, but combined, there's no added value. And chapters are things to be combined. A unifying of tone presents consistency and boosts flow; the feel that strikes me when I consider your chapters overall is "rough around the edges". I don't quite know how to deal with that, but perhaps it's food for thought.

It's with this that I've decided to bid you adieu. So, to reply a previous comment, no, I won't be looking at chapter 4. I could give you a list of reasons, but they won't mean much in the long run, so I'll say instead that working with you was, on the whole, rewarding. I gush when I see something amazing, and get snarky real quick when I see something subpar, but it's rare that I feel an acknowledging sort of respect when reviewing like I do towards you. I'll make it clear that my personal opinions are not perfect and, indeed, there's probably a lot more areas ready for improvement that I haven't touched on. But I thank you for giving them consideration.

Where do you go on from here?

Well, I'd recommend you to send this to MintyRest to further hone your foundation. His thread is here: http://www.ponychan.net/chan/fic/res/104134+50.html. There's nothing much I can say about his style that you can't learn from a quick look through his reviews. I regard his skills highly. If you can win him over, you will most likely have no trouble with skeptics, period. Just make sure to read the OP fully before posting. The queue looks like it'll be a while, though.

General advice for future reviews should you return to the TG, based on unfounded personal opinion: post it in chunks. Anything more than 10k will sit for a bit, but the review will most likely cover all of it, and we've had quite a lot of hard workers up and about lately clearing the queue (props to y'all btw, you put me to shame). I'd say the length of prologue + first 2 chapters is about right, although you can specifically say that you only want chapter n to be reviewed, and thus post all previous chapters leading up to it. Just, well, given the trend, don't be too shy about posting more than 10k words, because it'll give you a more effective review than if you only posted one chapter.

And, of course, keep writing.
>> No. 118278
Hey, I'm back with a new chapter!

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 and Bentgrass examine evidence from the last murder, and we learn some new facts about a certain number one assistant. Also, Big Macintosh gets a surprise visitor...


One thing that I'm sure needs changing is the ending bit. For one, I want to keep the gender ambiguous, mainly because there are certain ponies I want people to think could be the killer. Two, I tried to do my best to avoid saying exactly what was going on, partly because I think it adds depth, and also because it's kinda gross. Any help on that is MUCH appreciated.
>> No. 118283

Thank you for your time. I'm sorry to see you go, but that's your choice to make and I can only respect that. I think you would have liked it, given our discussion regarding a reader's desires, but who knows in the end?

It was good to have someone to argue with who would say "no that doesn't work" and not only explain why but offer an alternative solution.

Whether or not your advice was expert I still don't care about, as I never did, but it was frank and well-reasoned, so I got what I asked for. You listened and thought over what I had to say and I also can't help but believe you always tried to make your opinions as fair as possible. I can't really demand any more of you than that.

So, all that said, I assure you that the respect is mutual.

Adieu, au revoir, farewell.

Until we meet again.
>> No. 118320
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Going to be brutally honest. This was very difficult to read.

In the category of technical merit:
This story needs a lot of help. The single most damning element of this work is the combination of six protagonists and telling the story through a first-pony narrative. Now, that's not to say that it can't be done. But as the reader I need to know who I'm switching to. Explicitly. Otherwise the story goes sideways. Of particular note, when Curiosity Killed the Pony began, I thought for the first five paragraphs or so that I was following Chance, until whoever it is that is speaking – I assumed it was Windup afterwards, and wasn't confirmed in my suspicions until nearly halfway through the section – mentions following a pony. Then I had to backtrack six parts in order to find out who I thought Chance was following, only to rediscover that he'd been toppled by Shining Reflection in two sections, and I hadn't even realized it yet because the parts are so disjointed. If you really want to keep to this style of storytelling, I suggest you go pick up a copy of Rick Riodron's recent works; The Red Pyramid in The Kane Chronicles series, or The Lost Hero in The Heroes of Olympus series. Both are written in a similar narrative style. First-person, switching around perspectives between two or three protagonists. Another work to consider would be D.J. MacHall's The Pendragon Adventure, though that story only has one protagonist it follows in first-person perspective. Study up on the style. First-person narrative is very difficult to pull off, especially in the present tense, as your story tends to keep slipping into, the characters recounting events as they happen. I'm still not sure what tense the story is in, even after reading through it. With so many protagonists, I highly recommend switching to third-person limited narrative.
Moving on from your stylistic choices, it's plain to see you're trusting your spellchecker too much. Spellcheck, in any form, only catches typographical errors. Misspellings, mainly. It doesn't catch dropped words, or added words, or incorrect words, or punctuation. This was especially prevalent in the part Shining Reflection, I believe. Words missing, everywhere. They're an extremely tedious issue to clear up, as there really is no way to automate it. You just have to read through the work and find them yourself. Reading your work aloud will help to find these grammatical disjoints, as well as other errors, and simply help the story's flow. When people read their own work silently, they tend to gloss over such errors, their mind filling in the blanks.
Next, ellipsi. '…' that thing. Mother of god, they're everywhere. Everywhere.
>They still felt so odd... so unnatural... but, they were all I had now... and they worked just the same.
>She was always so cheerful...
>pushed me in front of... but I also knew... that I didn’t have any other option.
>ponies around me... and without my
>Oh no... SHE was here... That voice could only be
>completely in half...
>was impaled...
>If only that were true... But in reality
>I was in a panic... but instead of screams
>We just stared at each other in shocked silence... until I finally got giggly again
>...Oh no...
>after all... At least a few days
Everywhere. In most of these cases, a comma or a period would have sufficed. I would say that I'll excuse them within the character's dialog, but you don't have that luxury seeing as everything is the character's dialog. It makes the characters seem bored with their own stories, or unsure of themselves, and it really destroys the pace of the story. Which is a bizarre thing to say, seeing as how the pace of the story is so rapid to begin with.
And speaking of punctuation, you need to review the rules of dialog and narration transitions.
>“Save it, Chance” She interrupted again. “Shylock’s promised a cut of the profits for anypony who collects from you. Time to pay the piper.” she smirked, stepping closer to me.
This is a perfect example. In the first transition, the subject of the sentence is a pronoun, she, directly referring back to the quote spoke in the sentence. But when you do this, you need to transition with a comma inside the quote, and lower case spelling outside of it.
>”Save it, Chance,” she interrupted again.
What you do with the rest of the sentence varies. You can include the second quote in the first sentence, bridging them with a comma once more, or you could leave it as is, as the juxtaposition of the narrative could refer forward to the second quote, as well. The second piece of narrative in that paragraph, however, in no way refers back to the dialog. As such, it should be treated as a new sentence, capitols in place. It's difficult to find any other instances of this problem due to your blatant overuse of ellipsis, and your tendency to end dialog in question marks. But here's a few more:
>“I only trust Old Timer with my repairs.” I was rudely interrupted.
Once again, the narrative segment directly refers to the dialog. Comma in quote.
>“Round and round and round it goes. Time to stop, here we go.” I said,
Directly refers to the dialog. Comma in quote.
>Sawbones shook his head and responded sternly. “I said this would hurt. This’ll make sure you don’t bite down on your tongue or yell out.”
The narrative refers directly to the ensuing dialog, but both are technically complete sentences and can stand on their own.
I could go on, and really nitpick a lot of things, but there are other categories to review.

Tl;dr – First-person narrative is difficult to execute, and you're doing so poorly with so many protagonists. This work does not appear to have been proofread by you before submission for review, as evident by many simple grammatical errors. You also need to review your rules for quotation. Consider condensing your cast into pairs, or even down to a single protagonist, or introducing characters more explicitly at the beginning of their sections. Read your work personally and address its minor grammatical flaws. Finally, read this.

Score: 4/10

In the category of story craft and plot progression:
Have I mentioned this all felt very disjointed? This all feels extremely disjointed. Again, I imagine it was done on purpose, but the constant shifting of perspective makes it difficult to keep track of everything that has happened. And a lot has happened. The problem is, very little of it seems of any consequence. Let's review.
In the prologue, we get a view of the dystopia that Equestria has become, along with fleeting glimpses of the mane six and your original six. There isn't much to be said of a prologue – it's meant to set the scene, and this does its job. But it seems to me to be setting the wrong kind of scene.
Moving into the story, we're introduced to Windup, who I would assume is the leading protagonist seeing as he was introduced first. We learn what he does for a living, and get some background and characterization for him. Then the process repeats itself for the other five characters, all at once, one right after the other, in no particular order. There's very little plot progression. Shining makes the most progress in this regard, but even she seems to be meandering aimlessly through the introduction. She's the only character to have any immediate contact with the other protagonists, and it's not even addressed until three sections later, at the end of Chance's section. By then, I'd forgotten what had transpired, because it hadn't transpired from Chance's perspective, and it's so tangential as to seem unimportant. Telling their two introductions in quick succession would help bridge that gap. Followed by an immediate transition into Bonesaw's introduction would further help to cement and clarify the story. Shining is also the only one of the six protagonists to have any contact or seemingly any knowledge of the mane six, none of them being mentioned outside of Shining's introduction section or the prologue. Then they're tossed aside as you return to pulling the six protagonists together. It's a tantalizing tidbit that is quickly discarded. I would suggest expanding on this thread of the plot, or removing it entirely for later consideration. Focus on one element at a time until its been established, then begin introducing subplots. Or in this case, the main plot.
Glimmerlode and Smogbloom both feel forced into the story's sequential introductions. Nothing of consequence seems to happen in their introductions other than introducing them, either. I can only assume we're going to see the CMC again at a later time, seeing as they were such a integral part of Glimmerlode's story, which is at least something. But Smog's entire purpose seems to be to get Windup into the story. And once again, the orientation of the story's sections leaves these two points disjointed.

Tl;dr – I stopped reading at Curiosity Killed the Pony and just started skimming. There's no significant hook in the story to keep me reading. There are hooks, but there's so many of them and they're all so scantily baited I don't feel inclined to bother with any of them. Sort your sequence of events out better and thread them together somehow – give the plot some cohesion, even if it's just getting the cast together for now.

Score: 5/10

In the category of characterization:
I'm always super excited for original characters. Canon characters are extremely difficult to write for, in my opinion. You're able to dodge a bullet in that regard as the canon characters you're dealing with are all being deliberately written out of character, but they'll still have a character to consider. The mane six were barely touched in this regard, with only Rarity making an appearance, and she had all of two lines. Not much to judge there. The CMC had some more screen time, however, but you seemed to do a good job with them. Scootaloo was reckless, Applebloom was commanding, and Sweetie was unremarkable. Once Scootaloo was introduced, it became very obvious when Applebloom and Sweetie were introduced, even without explicitly stating it. Well done.
Your six protagonists, however, were not quite as defined. With the constant shift in perspective the story goes through, no one character gets a chance to express him or herself much. Even so, a few of the characters have established an archetype for themselves. Glimmerlode is obviously and adorably insane, and comes from an odd and somewhat tragic background. Shining Reflection is despondent and disillusioned with her life, and doesn't seem to have any real direction. I hope she gains one soon, and her apathy isn't milked for several chapters. Also, she's had the most screen time among all the protagonists, so I wonder if she was intended to be the group's leader. Chance is a conman and a player, and not particularly good at it. Sawbones is a straight talker, obviously concerned with the state of the city and the cause of its many problems. He has a goal, even as lofty as it is, which is great for this early in the story. Smog, and Windup, though. I don't even know what to do with them. Smog more than Windup. Windup at least has some background established, and a bit of his personality fleshed out. But Smog seems incredibly two-dimensional as of now. His parts are short and inconsequential, and he seems to be a bit of a tag-along. Everypony else has two or more sections where they're leading, but he only has the one, and it's easily the shortest of any of the other character's. He just seems creepy and analytical. Then, there's Windup, at last. If you plan for him to become the story's main protagonist – the story's Twlight – which I assume you do, seeing as you introduced him first, his character and motivations need to be carefully considered. He seems driven by curiosity, desperate for interaction with other ponies, but contrastingly shy and withdrawn. It's not an unheard of characterization, but he doesn't seem to have any motivation other than these things.

Tl;dr – your characters need more time on their own to let their personalities come through. Some of them are lacking an obvious or even a subtle motivation. Consider compressing each character's introduction into a single long segment, in order to give each character more time to develop, instead of jumping around so much.

Score: 7/10

Total Score: 16/30
There's a story here to be told. That much is obvious. Sort your thoughts and uncover that story. I have a similar problem, so I'm right there with you. Remember that writing is a process, and keep working on it.
>> No. 118321
File 134653598261.jpg - (58.38KB , 333x333 , face hoof.jpg )

“Let me be cruel, not unnatural; I will speak daggers to [you], but use none.”

This quote basically sums up how I am going to review this story. I hold no ill will towards you at all, I’m just here to help you out.

Quick question. Did you even pre-read this before submitting this? I found a lot of really simple errors that should have never got through quality control, but I will touch on that in a bit.

First thing first, let’s look at the synopsis.

>Just a regular day of collecting gems, except for a very special Sapphire I found. I just love it, except... wait what?! What’s going on?!

Ok. The synopsis itself is fine. A little different, but it’s fine. However, you should never have mistakes in the synopsis. It basically foreshadows to the reader the atrocities that
will probably be found within the story. Sapphire is not a proper noun, so don’t capitalize it. A comma should be placed after the “wait” in order to denote a pause before she said “what?!”


I’m not going to sugarcoat this. You had a truck load of errors. These errors range from sentence structure, misuse of words, awkward phrasing, and confusing descriptions.

Ok, here’s a few:

>I shift to the sensing spell, and it pulls toward me left a little

Correct me if I’m wrong. This is a mistake, right? It was so blatant, I didn’t even think it was wrong. Were you trying to say “and it pulls toward my left a little” or “and it pulls me toward the left a little”

>“Oh! My goodness this must be a big gem” I follow it for a few minutes and I come to an enormous blue sapphire.

You ended the dialogue, so there should be a period after “gem”.

>When I start the next searching spell, my horn pulls so hard I nearly lose my balance.

By saying “when”, you reference a future event. So, this means that every time she starts her searching spell, she loses balance. It could also mean that she knows she’s going to lose balance when she starts her next spell. Keep it consistent with the present tense.

>“Oh please, curses tend to, not be quite as they seem.” I respond, remembering the poison joke incident.

An ellipsis should be used after “tend to”, instead of a comma. Use an ellipsis because it indicates a pause in the flow of a sentence. In this case, she paused to remember the incident.

>and before long I am sweating glistening with exertion.

Do you mean, “sweating and glistening”?

>At last it leaves the dirt,

Use a comma after an introductory phrase. It should be “At last,” but using “Finally,” works too.

>“Rarity are you home?”

Use a comma after “Rarity”. When directly referencing someone, place commas around his/her name.

>Oh, I was wondering–“

Um, you forgot the quotation mark at the beginning of the dialogue.

>I ask raising my voice a little.

Comma after “ask”.

>Oh no, what’s going on? I’ve got to do something. Twilight! Yes, if anypony knows what to do it’s Twilight. I take off out the door, except I am stopped at the door by some unknown invisible force. I look down at my hoof to notice a blue aura surrounding my body, but I’m not casting a spell. Sweetie Belle perhaps? I look back at her, and not Sweetie Belle, but the Sapphire is glowing bright blue. She is quite pale on the other hoof, if that’s even possible. Oh this is going to ruin my hooficure. I dig my hooves into the ground and pull against the stone.

This paragraph was so confusing to read. You should at the very least, italicize her own thoughts and maybe even separate them from the descriptions.

>The battle continues for nearly an hour, by which time I have reached the library, breathing heavily. Whoo, I can’t feel it very much anymore. I hope Twilight can help.

Same as above.

>who procedes to stare straight through me.

Who proceeds.

>“Hello? Is Somepony there?”

“Somepony” is not a proper noun.

>The diamond dog was right. Oh come on, think Rarity. That’s it! I’m sorry for this Twilight. I turn and spin on my front hooves, bringing my tail around and into Twilight’s face, hard.

*Sigh* Same as above.

>“Ow!” what was that?” She staggers backward. Good, I’m still solid. She looks angrily in my direction, squinting her eyes. She looks straight at me for a moment, and her eyes widen.

You should never have put that quotation mark after “Ow!” and again italicize her thoughts.

>About a thousand years ago I discovered a text that said they could do something else as well

Use a comma after introductory phrases. So, “About a thousand years ago,”.

Some of these errors were really extremely obvious. I didn’t mark them all, but this should give you the chance to reread and fix the errors you find yourself.


It was kind of obvious that this was a dream you had, because a lot of this didn’t make much sense at all. I’m still trying to figure out if this is a one-shot, or it’s chapter 1 of a story you are starting—you never really said. Either way, you need to go more indepth. The beginning was good, but it started to fall off real quick.

Here’s a couple questions:

1.) Why didn’t Sweetie Belle go get help?
2.) What was the point of putting Twilight in? (It felt like you just tossed her in there just because you could.)
3.) If this is a one-shot, who is the black unicorn?
4.) Is there another reason why the black unicorn wants these gems? Becoming the most powerful (insert bad guy’s race/gender/species here) is probably the most cliche concept in any form of media—ever.

There was a certain element of mystery in the beginning, but at the end you spilled the whole entire story in the span of 100 words. You said you want to make this around 2000 words. I advise you make it longer than that. You need more rising action in order to make the climax as epic as it should be.

Final Thoughts

In a way, the story is interesting. I guess the real reason I may sound a little frustrated/fed-up is because you left it on such a cliffhanger. I would really like to know what’s going to happen next.

If you have any question/concerns/complaints be sure to ask.

”So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”
>> No. 118323
File 134653671758.png - (17.58KB , 480x360 , clap.png )

This looks like a real solid review. Better than anything I'll produce anyway. You went really in depth on the problems, which is really good.

Only suggestion I can make would be to break your paragraphs into smaller ones. Ones eyes sometimes get lost when trying to read walls of text.

Besides that, looks good.
>> No. 118327
Yeah, it always looks better in the word processor. I always seem to forget to space it out afterwards.
>> No. 118332
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I'll be honest with you: No, I did not preread this. I had planned to, but I have been mentally exhausted for days now, and I apologize to you for that.

>I shift to the sensing spell, and it pulls toward me left a little
Ouch. I should be ashamed. That was supposed to be toward my left.

>So, this means that every time she starts her searching spell, she loses balance.
... I didn't realize that. Good catch.

>Do you mean, “sweating and glistening”?
That's just a major derp in coding. Sweating is supposed to be a strikethrough, to indicate that Rarity refuses to use that word, but it was the first one that came to mind.

> You should at the very least, italicize her own thoughts and maybe even separate them from the descriptions.
That's my fault, yeah. (Technically all of it is my fault because I'm the writer, but that's beside the point.) I thought about italicizing it, but was too lazy exhausted to go back and fix it.

>I didn’t mark them all, but this should give you the chance to reread and fix the errors you find yourself.
I deserve a slap for those *slaps self in the face* I'd like to say I was too tired to catch those but that's not an excuse. I had time.

1. She panicked? I should fix that, yeah.
2. It was to show that she didn't just lie down and accept her fate. But I will admit it's quite flimsy.
3. The point here is actually that Rarity never gets a chance to find out. You don't need to know who your attacker is for them to completely obliterate you.
4. I don't have an answer to that.

Sorry about the cliffhanger, but I woke up at that point and honestly, I kind of like it like that.

When I get some mental energy back--Probably in the next couple of days--I'll see to fixing this... insult to literature.
>> No. 118343
File 134654718780.jpg - (8.99KB , 257x196 , trolololololol.jpg )
*Walks into the ttg queue with shifty eyes before grabbing the nearest fic and pulling out a gun. "Alright suckers listen up. I'll just be taking this fic down to Seidio's and I's thread for the typical review treatment. A notice shall be posted here linking to the review once it's finished. Nopody whines or complains and we'll all get this over with soon. Nopony gets hurt. Got that?"

*Turns to see which fic I've grabbed. "Oh, Jake the Army Guy huh? I've seen you post this story on a lot of threads in the past. In fact there's only one I haven't seen you post it to: mine! Well buddy, whether you like it or not, I will take a look at your fic, and I'm not taking no for an answer!"

*Slowly backs out of ttg, fic in tow.
>> No. 118346
My body is ready...

And in my defense, I DID post it in Minjask and Hugbox's thread, and you DID do some work there. So, I get points for effort?
>> No. 118353
File 134655250279.png - (64.06KB , 874x914 , surprise_rainbow_dash_by_ultimateultimate-d51fffe.png )

Dude, Minjask. Wtf man. I can't tell if your trolling me or your dead serious. BUT just in case it's the latter.

Your statements lack fighting spirit! If you don't believe in yourself, believe in me! Believe in me, who believes in you!

To be honest, I thought this was some kind of test, man. You know, like you making sure the threads left in good hands, so I really analyzed it intently.

If you have a problem with how I review, please tell me. I want to get better at this too.
>> No. 118367
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He never posted it to either of mine.

.... [Error: cannot post as two users] Crap, I'll have to drop the gag for a moment. I was REALLY tired when I typed that, but I'm not kidding. If my statements lacked spirit, it's because I agree with you. I'm tired man, I don't have the brain power to fix that story right now, or at least I didn't. I'm not giving up on it, I'm just saying that as it currently sits, it's crap, and you were right to label it so. In a way, you could call it a test--if you want--but believe me when I say I do not believe myself better than any newcomer that just happens to waltz in here.

Your review was fine, you labeled enough of the errors that I got the gist of it, the fixes were clear enough to understand, and you made sure to explain the mistakes so I wouldn't make them again. That's the mark of a good reviewer; you need only gain knowledge of English literature.
>> No. 118369
File 134655948654.png - (777.56KB , 1024x1280 , Derpy020.png )
>I do not believe myself better than any newcomer that just happens to waltz in here.
Actually, I'd say you've gotten a lot better at writing (and because of that, reviewing) since you first came here... Dang, how long ago was it.
>> No. 118377
File 134656853815.png - (0.97MB , 3508x3508 , 132699501485.png )
This ought to be good. Brace yourself, armyguy. Those two know what they're doing, but they do not pull their punches.

>browses for another fic to read over.
>> No. 118378
File 134656898842.jpg - (6.23KB , 218x232 , Satisfied.jpg )

> I'm just saying that as it currently sits, it's crap, and you were right to label it so.

Pssh. I never said anything of the sort. It just had a bunch of rookie errors that never should have got past you. This I know, since your the most awesome reviewer here XD. I was even hoping to get you to look at some of my work.
>> No. 118386
>> No. 118403
File 134659600783.gif - (495.97KB , 500x294 , read_a_book.gif )
Heya. Snarkle here. I put the beginnings of a review on the document itself, but I gotta be straight with ya.
Y'got three problems. This is better'n most, but they're a bit harder to pin down than the usual grammar or spelling bits.
Your first problem is show versus tell. Your narrator just loves to butt in and tell us how the characters feel, or think, or eat a pizza, rather than allowing them to show us themselves.
Your second is characterization. You lean on the descriptions from Hasbro and kinda forget the rest. Dash acts first, and usually only engages the muscle between her ears if acting fails. Twilight's a worry-wart, despite her strong sense of 'right' and 'wrong' - she'll often let her doubts nibble away at the course of action. Spike's an overworked, underappreciated brother who just wants to be noticed. Scoot's a fireball of bragging and confidence which is a bald-faced lie to everyone but herself. We know this because of the cartoons. But were someone to pick up your fic first, he'd think that Twi was Professor Peabody, Dash was a warrior-poet, Scoots was a knight-errant disillusioned with her lot in life, and so forth. All great makings of an Arthurian drama, but not for the story you presented.
Third and finally, Chekov's Arsenal. Y'got guns, knives, swords, lengths of rope, razor blades, and an M-1 Abrams.
You have ideas for a dozen stories, and you're so intent on showing us your ideas that you don't focus on the story at hand.
Meanwhile? Your story is (while a bit predictable) a good shot at an episodic feel. It does need a good scrub for characterization and you need to sit down and prune some of the branches, but you've got a good start.
Keep it up.
>> No. 118409
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April 23, 2012. The day I posted "A Special Mare" in four queues: Mintyrest, Umbra, Chocolate Milk, and Golden Vision, then proceeded to open my own thread, twice. Yeah, I was terrible back then. I only looked at plot holes.

I'm flattered.
>> No. 118431
I appreciate the honesty! I'm glad the episode feel came off, and you're right, my SDT problems are something I'm still trying to work on. It's one of those intangible things for me that's somewhat hard to nail down. Anyway, thanks for the suggestions, and I'll be sure to give this fic a once over before trying my third strike on EqD.
>> No. 118437
I say again, my body is ready...
>> No. 118444
Review can be found on my thread here >>118443
>> No. 118447
File 134663327480.jpg - (78.47KB , 640x356 , FlittersNight4.jpg )
Tags: [Normal][Sad]

Synopsis: While performing cloud duty on a quiet night, Flitter takes time out to reflect on the less-than-exemplary behaviour she's shown in the past.

Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/40416/Flitter%27s-Night

Password: Fli78tCloud22ThunderBell116NDD

Word Count: 8619 (one-shot)

Comments: I've had this story proofread by Meeester on FIMF.net, so grammar and spelling are not what I'm concerned with. That said, if you do happen to spot any leftover goofs, I'd much appreciate it! What I'm interested in, though, are story elements such as characterization, setting, pace, and dialogue.

I'm particularly interested in characterization, as that's the heart of this fic. Is Flitter an engaging character here? Does she seem believable and sympathetic? I would also like the same questions answered about any other prominent characters in the story, if at all possible.

For the setting, I was trying to make something serene and quiet, but also dark and a little disturbing. Does the setting work (the place and the time)? Should I include more or less detail, and if so, where? Are my in-universe explanations and world-building elements sensible, or well-phrased (such as when I explain the cirrus clouds)?

Also, I understand the fic is not meant to be a rollercoaster ride, but is it too slow and ponderous, and are there moments when the pacing is jerky and not smooth? How do the flashbacks work? Do they seem to fit in among the surrounding text, or are they out of place, too short, a little awkward in transition, etc.?

I also include a fair amount of dialogue at times, such as during the flashbacks and near the end. I need to know if there are moments when it feels wrong or stilted. If it needs editing, then I need to know specifically which passages could be changed, and if possible how they could be changed.

And, of course, I really want to know if you enjoyed this fic. That's very important, too!

Those are my main areas of concern. If possible, I'd particularly like a reviewer who could address all these points and state whether or not my fic is of the standard of Equestria Daily (or could be, with polish). You don't need to give a line-by-line or delve into too much detail; a short summary of each point and one or two examples will be just fine.
>> No. 118449
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Took a little peek at this... Your second word is a grammatical error...
>> No. 118457
No it's not.
>> No. 118458
File 134663998337.png - (54.37KB , 202x250 , 25667809453.png )
I thought the same thing at first, but "lay" is acceptable on some occasions. I believe this is one of them.
>> No. 118459
File 134664064057.png - (120.87KB , 1167x1164 , Shocked Dash.png )

Wait, why?
>> No. 118460
File 134664124361.png - (214.75KB , 473x434 , 6.png )
"Lay", in addition to being a word commonly confused with "lie", is also the past tense of "lie". The rest of the scene is written in the past tense as well, so it looks fine to me.

Isn't English fun?
>> No. 118462
"Lay" is transitive. It is what you do with another object. You lay a book on the desk.
Present "lay," past "laid," past participle "laid."

"Lie" is intransitive. It is what you do with yourself. You lie down on the bed.
Present "lie," past "lay," past participle "lain."

>Flitter lay down on the edge of the ice rink
The past tense of "lie" is what's being used here.
>> No. 118463
File 134664233929.jpg - (39.62KB , 1000x562 , mlfw1432_large.jpg )

Heh. Well, this is embarrassing.

I feel like a complete idiot now. Real sorry about that, Impossible Numbers.

Well, time to move on with my life after I go cry in a cold, dark, and lonely place
>> No. 118464
Eh. Don't beat yourself up. It's one of the most common confusion errors.
>> No. 118469
Here's a lie vs lay copypasta I made a while back if anyone wants to use it: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/68611394/LieLay.txt
>> No. 118490
File 134668041422.jpg - (41.64KB , 900x675 , 64953_381939041817834_376030225742049_1540316_2110690167_n.jpg )
>Storm Vision
>in /fic/
*blink* What?

Alllrighty then. Systems are running almost at full capacity again, so let's see what'cha got here.
>Pic I will always recognize as Chocolate Milk’s thread: Pure Pony Proofreading.

Evaluation of the story:
Whoo boy! You sure evaluated it alright. If the author can’t figure out what’s wrong with that story, they clearly didn’t read your review, although probably because it’s so freakin’ long, and in one big block of text. 7/10

A good review–-like a good piece of writing–-should have little to no errors in it, and Sonny, you’ve got em’.
One example: “But as the reader I need to know who I'm switching to. Explicitly. Otherwise the story goes sideways.” That ought to be separated by em or en dashes, not periods.
You’ve also got another rookie mistake I usually only see in fanfictions: Wall o’ text. You’ve got to break that up to make it easier to read; even if it makes your post longer, the author can’t fix the story if they get lost in your review. 4/10

That’s the idea. You’re confident and assertive enough that the author is going to take you seriously, but you’re not so forceful that they feel like they’ve been raped. Provided the story hasn’t also been obliterated.9/10
I don’t give out tens unless there’s a really good reason for it.

You basically just crammed as much as you could into one review and posted the whole thing, possibly without formatting it first. You’ve got a bunch of stacked examples–-that only serve to blur each other–-and one really big block of text. You even put a tl;dr at the bottom, which should have tipped you off. 3/10
First: Try breaking up your points; anytime you mention a new point in the story, hit that [Enter] button a couple of times.
Second: Try not to post lots of examples at once unless the author specifically requests it.

Well, I wouldn’t put a gold sticker on it, but it works for you. You’ve used BBCode to embolden the headers of your scoring sections… and that’s about it. 7/10
I can’t really kick you too hard for this. It’s not super important, just nice to see.

Overall rating
Eh, could be better, but at least the author has something to work with when they fix their story. 37/50
Curve: 7. I think I’ll just add the style score as a curve from now on, essentially doubling it.
>> No. 118493
Thank you very much for taking the time to read, I realize it was likely a daunting task.

Just a few comments and sort-of explaining my reasonings:

I chose first person because I intend to use "unreliable narrators" to my advantage as the story progresses, and I agree that it can be quite confusing, I will work on being much more explicit with my character narration. Though in the case of the last chapter, any character-confusion was perfectly intentional.

As for elipses... I really have no excuse, it's really a bad habit of mine that I've been trying to work on. But in the case of narration, I do have a tendency to use it even more, since I picture the character's tone in my head, and want to express when a narrator might pause as if they were searching for the proper word. By the sound of it, that just made things more confusing, so I'll do my best to clean it up.

In terms of characterization, you were exactly spot-on. That is exactly what I was trying to express about all of the characters, yes even Smogbloom. He's intentionally stoic, creepy, and generally off-putting, even to the characters themselves. And, while I wouldn't say exclusively that Windup is the "main character" of the six, as he'll share some of that weight with Shining, he'll be the main focus.

I definitely will take your advice and extend each character's individual sections so they all get proper introduction in a way that helps the story. My original intention was for each character to get a chapter alone to "introduce themselves" and then afterwords slowly reveal more about themselves to the others as the story progresses. I'll see what I can do about making sure it isn't quite as 'slow'

Once again, thank you, your review was a great help!
>> No. 118514
File 134670047900.png - (209.77KB , 600x800 , 4bb0609eec2b2aac4202ef8966345dda-d5010dx.png )

I read through all of this and found it pretty interesting so far, so I'm going to review it. I'm not sure I can do all of it due to wanting to get some writing of my own done, but I can promise at least the first two chapters.
>> No. 118518
File 134671559517.jpg - (945.55KB , 1500x1050 , 174750 - artist maru Japanese shining_armor.jpg )
Title: Baptism of Fire. <Working on the title any ideas are welcome.>

Name: Vilwind

E-mail: [email protected]

Tags: Adventure <More will be added when the story will expand>

Synopsis: Shining Armor story. How Shining Armor became Captain of the Canterlot Royal Guard.

Links: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1_LFdx1NthFAUUQ1cxHmiQU0snhbf6YxMWVniEe92DeI/edit
>> No. 118519
>Baptism of Fire
Best. Title. Ever! I say keep it.
>> No. 118520
Tags: [Shipping]
Synopsis: When Rarity’s friends discover that she has been seeing a prostitute, they decide to investigate and find out why. What they discover is stranger than any of them could have realized. (Not clop)
I’m just looking for any general criticism/pre-reading. I’m told I overuse the passive voice, so any help with that would be appreciated.
>> No. 118522
I'm not sure if this is against the rules. But since Rarity is my favorite pony, I guess I could take a look.

Claiming unless the mods take it down.
>> No. 118523
Oh, I see commenting isn't enabled on your doc. I can't start my review 'til it is.
>> No. 118525
File 134673528697.png - (154.24KB , 999x800 , rainbow_dash___laid_back_by_cptofthefriendship-d4ejp6u.png )

I got this.

>Best. Title. Ever! I say keep it.

True dat.
>> No. 118537
File 134677713530.jpg - (113.75KB , 900x771 , Celestia134518271281.jpg )
Okay, the good news is your fic is fairly mechanically sound. I don't recall any grammar or punctuation errors. But mechanical errors are the least important thing when reviewing. A few of my favorite stories have terrible punctuation, but the stories they told were so wonderful that it was easy for me to look past their flaws.

But Sweet Escape... Err...

The whole thing reads like a script for a comic series. Granted a lot of writers start with a skeleton and then add the meat later, so you can still save this if you absolutely love the art of prose writing.

Towards the beginning you jump around too much, it feels like you're trying to have the fanfiction version of a movie montage.

Your biggest pun not intended problem is your fic lacks detail. Besides the time when Celestia touched her face, we never really get a sense that they over-weight; they don't even act like they're fat.

And the scene where they duel with umbrellas, where I quit. That's not how good fight scenes work in prose. Again, it reads like a script.

You have a choice to make, you can either acquire a metric ton of books and read them while adding the meat to your skeleton, or you can get the pony who does the fat Diamond Tiara blog to draw this as a comic.
>> No. 118542
Oh, you've taken your doc down...

>You have a choice to make...
I didn't realize how rude this was when I wrote this and I'm sorry.
>> No. 118543

You know what? I loved Sweet Escape back when it was a write-off entry. While some advice is valid, like adding extra show-don't-tell for dramatic effect, don't you tell me that this suffers from having a bare-bones structure. Sometimes we want to paint a mental picture with word-inks distilled from ripe ideaberries; sometimes we want to tell a funny story.

This fic may not be big on concrete description, but some of the humor is genuinely clever. This is easily the start of a very good fic. To me, the main problem is that it's one of those fics that wants to say something funny and otherwise doesn't really give a shit. If I were to suggest a change, it would be to shift it a little bit away from "one long joke" and towards "almost believable story about the Princesses' relationship."
>> No. 118545

That was only the review copy I took down. I already saved in to my PC and had been making some of the suggested changes in my working copy. I'm kind of a neat freak when it comes to how my Google Docs look, and I do this after each review is completed. I'm not giving up on this story yet.

I think part of the confusion you had was with the new beginning I was trying out. It removed some of the exposition to try and quicken the pace, but I removed too much. Basically, Celestia and Luna aren't really that fat, and it's mostly Luna overreacting to meeting an obese pony noble at a social gathering. This was further revealed in the scene after the "fight."


I have been trying to move away from "Celestia is fat" and more towards "sisters being sisters" since the write-off. It has been slow going, but I think I'm making progress.
>> No. 118550
Whoops, sorry about that, commenting is enabled now.

What did I do to potentially break the rules?
>> No. 118551

Nah, it's just easier to review with gdoc comments on for certain reviews. You didn't break any rules. :3
>> No. 118553
File 134679894220.png - (1.03MB , 976x752 , Rarity89496 - applejack artist whitediamonds brush cute I_don't_think_this_is_shipping make.png )
I'll be honest with you. I'm not reviewing this because I think your idea is the greatest ever.

Rarity is one of the ponies I relate to the most. Look Before You Sleep is the episode that really hooked me on the show; when I stopped watching just because I knew this show was going to influence animation the same way Bayformers have influenced live action movies and started watching because it was a high quality show.

And I want to make sure you treat Rarity with respect.

By the way, you probably shouldn't use the word "prostitute" in your synopsis if you want anyone to read your story.
>> No. 118557
I've been told that you've resubmitted your fic to Equestria Daily without waiting for another review.

I'm gonna cut to the chase. Your fic doesn't have a first act. Without one, it is impossible for the reader to care about your characters. If you want to know how to fix this, watch the two videos I linked to below.

>> No. 118582
File 134683154980.png - (256.74KB , 500x500 , rainbow_dash_holding_coffee_mug_vector_by_jakobeks-d4kekrs.png )

Ok, before I begin, I would like to ask you a couple questions.

1.) Do you happen to be from England or some other European country?
2.) Is this story a one-shot?

I will be making references to these questions throughout the review, so make sure you have an answer for both.

Now that thats out of the way, let’s begin.

>Shining Armor story. How Shining Armor became Captain of the Canterlot Royal Guard.

Well, your synopsis is really boring, to be honest. If you want people to read your story, you have to make it more engaging and interesting. Right now it sounds bland and it doesn’t entice any form of “Oh, I wonder, how did Shining Armor become captain of the Canterlot Royal Guard.” If your synopsis isn’t good, many people will assume your story isn’t either.

Ok, referencing question 2, another reason you should change the synopsis is because if this is a one-shot then your synopsis really didn’t deliver what it said it would.


There were a lot of errors that I found throughout your story and I’m starting to question whether you pre-read it before submitting it. What I have done below is put 1-2 examples of errors that I saw.

>Captain of the Canterlot Royal Guard Snapdragon, straightened up

Your first sentence is already a little unclear. It should say “The Captain of the Canterlot Royal Guard, Snapdragon, straightened up”. When directly referencing someone place commas around their name.

>After a second of admiring the view he decided that it is time to continue his voyage.

Ok, a comma needs to be placed after “view” because it’s an introductory phrase. Also change "is" to "was" because you should always stay consistent with the tense you are using.

>a path encircling the old Lionhart Castle

This is an inconsistency and you do this quite often. Earlier in the story you said the name of the castle was “Lionheart”.

>The narrow, Slaughterpath meandered and looped its way through the forest and, in order to master it, the colt would take far longer than he would, following the shortcut.

Ok, again this is an inconsistency. Before you spelled Slaughterpath like “Slaughter-Path”. Also, this sentence doesn’t make any sense. I had to read it multiple times and I still find it confusing. The way you wrote it makes it sound as if the colt took the shortcut in order to master Slaughterpath, but it took longer.

>Colt’s silhouette appeared on the rock and the boy jumped, not slowing his pace.

>Snapdragon could see long horn.

>“Calm down, Snapy,” said large grayish earthpony stallion.

>Left thigh was black and blue with haematomas and swellings.

>when cold healing spell touched his back leg

These are all examples of missing articles. The articles make the statements more specific and overall, they make your statements sound a little smarter.

>His Turquoisish white coat was dirty from the fall.

“Turquoishish” is not a word and I’m pretty sure Shining Armor’s coat is completely white and it doesn’t have blue-green tints on it besides the cutie mark.

>Rookie lined over and started to rubbed his injured knee.

What does it mean that he “”Rookie lined over”? Also, change rubbed to “rub”.

>that‘s why I rushed here”

End your dialogue with a period.

>“Oooh,” he said.” It doesn‘t hurt anymore!

Ok, you misplace your quotation marks a lot. I saw this at least 7 times. Attach it to the next part of the dialogue.

>“In matter of fact I did. Why do you ask?”

I believe the phrase is “As a matter of fact,”.

>“My sister is attending it.” Shining Armor smiled for a second but as soon as the smile arrived it was gone.”

Why is there a quotation after gone?

>Shining Armor looked into Snapdragon eyes and immediately understood that he is speaking to an officer.” Sir!”

The eyes are Snapdragon’s, so make sure you say “Snapdragon’s” because it’s possessive.

>You have to learn a refrex. If you haven‘t got the refrex the windmill wallops you with a stick.

Do you mean reflex?

>Only those who weren‘t in the keep or were at Celestia side at the time,

Another possessive error. Should be “Celestia’s side”

From that point I stopped looking at the mechanical errors. Just so you know, there are at least 2-3 more occurrences of all the errors I posted above. These errors can also be found in the second half of the story as well.


I’m going to be honest. Overall, this story is rather boring. Nothing substantially exciting or memorable happens at all. In the beginning, your overuse of descriptions take away from the imagery and it also takes away from what's really important, clearly describing what’s happening.

For the majority of the beginning sequence, I had a hard time actually understanding what was happening and when I did understand it wasn’t very captivating. However, once the dialogue started, I found that reading their banter kept me attached.

The story did pick-up once you went into detail on his training. But where you overused description in the beginning, here you lacked it. I didn’t know what was going on besides what was being said by the characters. You should show the reader, not tell.

When reading your training scenes, I found similarities in many movies that I had seen, such as: Star Wars, Rocky, and The Karate Kid (especially Star Wars). Though this isn’t a bad thing, it takes away from the originality of the story. But, I have to say the part where you realize Shining Armor had a blindfold on, was pretty cool.

Unfortunately, right when I started getting interested in the story, you end it abruptly, leaving so many questions to the reader.

Also, I have to say that your title is awesome. But what does your story have to do with baptism or fire?

Referencing question 2: It would be a good idea to elaborate more on why Celestia wants Shining Armor trained so hard.

But, if this is only part one, make sure you do elaborate on these things.


Since most of the characters are OCs there isn’t much I can say about them, except that they have no real identifying properties. During the training sequences, I could never tell which of the ponies was training Shining Armor and this brought a lot of confusion. This makes me doubt the importance of these other characters. Unless you do something to make them stand out from one another, it would be a better idea to just have Snapdragon train Shining Armor.

Referencing question 1:
Shining Armor came off as OoC in quite a few places. In some parts, you made him sound as if he was some English gentleman or something of the sorts. He shouldn’t talk like he is from Britain, saying things like “thumping”.

Final Thoughts

The story could be a lot better once you fix the issues I have stated. Also, I do really hope this isn’t the end of the story either, seeing as there was no climax or no real conflicts.

If you have any questions/concerns/complaints be sure to ask.
>> No. 118584
File 134684168985.png - (304.12KB , 868x920 , shining_armor___vector_by_regolithx-d4yk5o6.png )

I humbly thank you for your review. I will implement your grammar and punctuation marks asap.

To answer your questions.

1)You are right in your suspicions. I’m Polish. As a non-native English speaker I have some problems with grasping the subtleties of this language.

2)No this isn’t a one-shot. I intend to write more. As a matter of fact, I already have.

>Well, your synopsis is really boring, to be honest.

Its work in progress. I know that before people decide if they want to read a fanfic. they tend to relay on three things. Firsts is the picture that the author gave for the story. If it captures the attention, the potential reader goes for the tile. If it’s interesting he goes for the description. If all those thee capture his attention average reader is willing to give the fic. a go.
Unfortunately I have a problem with crating an interesting description. I can’t find equilibrium between epic sounding, adventure description and giving away information about the plot itself.

> Also, I have to say that your title is awesome. But what does your story have to do with baptism or fire?

I want to show that Shining Armor is more than Twilights brother or Princess Cadance husband. He is Royal Guard. A protector. His duty leads him through suffering and pain for those he love. That suffering and that pain cleanses him. It’s his Baptism of Fire.

> It would be a good idea to elaborate more on why Celestia wants Shining Armor trained so hard.

I intend to. I want to show Princess Celestia as the monarch who controls its subjects and land through a web of subtle strings. To do so she needs ponies that can “make shit done”. For a thousand Years her dominion over Equestria was unshaken but now epic times are coming. The Mare on the Moon can be seen at night in the silver orb of the moon. The Statue of Discord has been found in the ruins of long forgotten keep and now stands in Canterlot palace gardens. Bad omens surround Celestia. She would not rule for this long if she would ignore those omens. Her grate hope Twilight Sparkle is only a filly now and it will be years before she is of age. She needs some pony who will be loyal. Some pony she can control easily, who will do her every command. Shining Armor fulfills all of these conditions. With a bit of unorthodox training he will become a excellent pawn in Celestias game.

> Since most of the characters are OCs there isn’t much I can say about them, except that they have no real identifying properties.

That is something I intended to do. They have peripheral role. I’m probably not use them in the future. They are here only to express some facts that surround Shining Armor.

> But where you overused description in the beginning, here you lacked it.

Why the second part of the story is written only in dialog?
When we are young and learn new things we receive knowledge from our teachers. There are words and moments from that period that are stuck with us till death. We can forget the face of the teacher we can forget what we were doing back then but we always remember words that were said to us because those words of knowledge burn in to the core of our being.
That is what I aimed for. And some comedy. I probably missed the target I was aiming for. I shall rethink this part.

Again I would like to thank you for your reviewing work on this fic. <Bow>
>> No. 118589
Title: White Eclipse
Name: Portal Jumper
E-Mail: [email protected]
Tags: Slice of Life, Sad
Synopsis: On a solitary night, Princess Luna sits, watching her sky and knowing that nopony appreciates her work. Yet, just as the princess sinks to her lowest, a filly known as White Eclipse comes to share in the night the princess created. And so begins a tale of friendship as the regent of the moon learns that everypony needs compassion, and that
it can come from the most unlikely of sources.
Link: http://portaljumper339.deviantart.com/art/White-Eclipse-Part-1-A-Chance-Occurrence-316259591?q=gallery%3Aportaljumper339%2F38080568&qo=0

Only one part so far, and this is it.

EqD pre reader comments: 

1st time:
Please see the following sample of issues I found in your fic:
>They were always too busy working during the day, they couldn't be bothered to stay up for even a few minutes
Comma splice
Watch out for word repetition. When you use the same word too much, it can get distracting.
>"Yes, 'tis I," she answered,
Why doesn't Luna use the royal 'we', if this is pre-banishment? I don't particularly care, honestly, but some people will howl for your blood and call this OOC.
 >Dear White Eclipse,
You may want to slightly change the formatting of the letter, either by italicizing, changing the font, or changing the indentation, in order to differentate it from the narration.
>She would never speak to her parents this way, as it was normally grounds for getting punished, but the idea of them using her to get to the Royal Sister's money was simply appalling, even to her young mind.
This is an example of your issue with telling rather than showing.
>with the princesses help
Incorrect possessive usage.
>"You have to promise me that you won't go begging for money. If the princesses offer it, then feel free to take it, but I don't want us to become common street urchins begging for coin at the princess' doorstep."
How old is this filly supposed to be? This seems more like something an adult or teenager would say than a child.
>"Oh, thank you Papa!" Having finally gotten through the rough patch of their conversation, Eclipse was once again overjoyed at the fact that she was had been invited to the castle to have dinner with the Royal Sisters.
You have two sentences here that express almost exaclty the same thing, but one does so in four words, and the other does so in more words than I care to count.
>the navy alicorn's
Try to keep references simple. Names and pronouns are preferred, and when you have to use descriptive references, don't make them more complex than they absolutely need to be.
The most substantial problem with this work is your issues with telling rather than showing, and it's substantial enough to seriously damage your ability to engage the reader and prevent me from recommending this work for posting. Refer to the section of the Editor's Omnibus regarding show vs tell for more. This is your first strike of three; revise wisely.

2nd time: 
Look for errors in the following areas:
Comma splices
Dialogue punctuation
Hyphen/dash confusion
There are still a lot of issues with the use of empty phrases like "the [color] filly" and overuse of telling, as your previous pre-reader pointed out. The pacing is also a tad glacial; to be perfectly blunt, I'm unconvinced most of our blog readers would give this a chance beyond the first few paragraphs, due to how many stories we see about Luna being in a similar situation.
As this is your second strike out of a possible three, I'd recommend you get help from someone (a reviewer on Ponychan's /fic/ board, for example) in terms of these issues. Take your time and revise. EqD isn't going anywhere.
>> No. 118605

I'm interested in reviewing this one, if it's still open. This will be my first review though, so if anyone else wants to take a stab at it they are more than welcome to. I wouldn't want to deny the author better criticism than what I can provide.
>> No. 118608
Please enter your story into our queue with the submission form linked near the top of the thread, under "For Writers."
>> No. 118616
File 134690229298.png - (116.32KB , 900x512 , tumblr_m74vxgbTJS1qc5ffho1_1280.png )

I'm glad to hear this isn't a one-shot. You have the makings of a real good story.

>There are words and moments from that period that are stuck with us till death. We can forget the face of the teacher we can forget what we were doing back then but we always remember words that were said to us because those words of knowledge burn in to the core of our being.

Man, this is just... awesome.


Ohh, this is your last strike on your story? That's kind of a heavy burden to put on a reviewer, don't you think?
>> No. 118617
File 134690305594.png - (531.91KB , 900x563 , luna__s_moon_by_tvolcom322-d536nsg.png )
Title: The Study of a Winning Pony

Author: Ponibius

Email Address: [email protected]

Tags: Comedy & Slice of Life

Synopsis: Cloud Kicker might just have the wildest life of any pony in Equestria. That may just be why Princess Luna wants Twilight Sparkle to study the insanity that is Cloud Kicker’s life for a sociology report. Unfortunately for Twilight Sparkle, she is going to have to survive the circle of jealous friends, paramours, enemies, crazy co-workers and disappointed family members that surround this crazy pony. Will Twilight Sparkle be able to complete this assignment before it spins out of control, or will she be reduced to a neurotic mess?

A Chengar Qordath and Comma-Kazie approved side story of The Incredibly Dense Mind of Rainbow Dash, The Life and Times of a Winning Pony, and What’s in a Name.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ZIqOaKyphsr2dGT6RT_PDdQpzlJ2RxM5RGYEWJQTUA0/edit?disco=AAAAAE1tHpk

Chapters: This is the beginning of the story. I originally intended this to be one chapter, but due to the length I ended up with, I was considering splitting it up into three more digestible chapters when I put it up.

Comments: This is a side story to the Incredibly Dense Mind of Rainbow Cash/Life and Times of a Winning Pony series of stories. While it is not required to read those stories to understand what is going on in mine, familiarity with those stories will certainly help (besides, they are great stories in their own rights, and I would highly recommend them). The concept and story has been approved by the original authors, and they have each helped by giving me an editorial run through of the story. But they did suggest I get a third party to help edit this story to make sure various grammar issues have been dealt with.

I had a significant number of comma mistakes when I first wrote this, and I am in the middle of reviewing comma rules so that I am better equipped to write in the future.

This is my first attempt at writing a story, and I intend to submit this to EQD once it is ready for the prereaders there. So I am more than willing to listen to any comments or criticism that is offered. Better to take it on the chin in a controlled environment like this then to get torn apart out there on the wild internet.

I have set up the GoogleDoc to allow for comments to be put in. If that is not so, please email me so that I may correct it. If you have any questions or comments feel free to email me.
>> No. 118618
Yeah, I'd suggest submitting to one of the review threads. But, multiple reviews can't hurt, so you could get a review here too.
>> No. 118619
Tags: [Adventure]

Synopsis: A fire in the Royal Archives. A mysterious, unreadable scroll. An enigmatic figure cloaked in darkness. Fate conspires to draw the Mane Six into an adventure that will decide not just the fate of Equestria, but the doom of the entire world.

Prologue: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1kW46-21M4PAPmNG5aGXT7C08VGc3SHhG4_Y6-V03F-o/edit

Chapter One: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1385LPqBZQm66vgVFgSNgCS2UZ8R3dyp4ExTKX2v9YC8/edit

I request that both the Prologue and Chapter One be reviewed, the sum total of which is about 9,000 words. I am looking to improve in any way I can, but I would appreciate help with plot structure and narrative flow.

Thank you in advance to whoever takes on my request.
>> No. 118620

As an addendum: some parts of the story have seen considerably more revision than others, so I apologize for any fluctuations in quality.
>> No. 118621
File 134690716317.jpg - (21.44KB , 450x425 , 132269228688.jpg )
Oh, why not. Sounds like there's potential here, and I need to do some contributing.
Claiming this, as I already have notes taken down for the Prologue, starting on Chapter 1 now.

By the way, Mr. or Ms. Sock, could you please submit the story through the Submission form in the OP? It's sort of a formality, but the maintainers will get on you if you don't. Thank you.
inb4 they submitted it while I was making my post
>> No. 118625
File 134691750184.png - (129.31KB , 281x416 , scootaloo hates you.png )
Yo, Alexmagnet. I ended up taking a look at your story out of pure boredom, and curiosity. It was greatly disappointing. I could just be cranky due to insomnia but I am feeling quite flank-hurt at the enormous letdown I encountered upon opening your story. You’ll find a comment or two in Doc about it, and a short but oh so bittersweet review at the end.
Why? Why would you write this?
>> No. 118627
To be honest? I liked it. I don't get what the whole slenderman thing is all about.
>> No. 118629
File 134692535697.png - (240.21KB , 477x450 , scootaloo not amused.png )
Well, I can’t find it, but it was a creepy folktale I read in High School English class. The fanfic “Slender Mane” on Equestria Daily had a near perfect rendition of it, so I attributed the name to that. Here is the original story:

Slender Man was once like you or I. A simple being, who lived a simple life. He was a wise monk, who lived secluded in the mountains, and spent his days meditating in order to expand his mind. One day a visitor arrived from seemingly out of nowhere, and handed him a small wooden box, saying “I cannot tell you what is in this box, for that would be too terrible a burden to bear. I can only humbly ask you to be its keeper, in my stead, until such time that I should return. You must never open the box, for it holds a dark and awesome power, and it cannot fall into the wrong hands.” The monk kindly accepted the box, and the visitor went on his way. Heeding the visitor’s warning, the monk carefully wrapped the box in silk, and hid it away among his belongings.
As he meditated, the image of the box kept returning to his mind, however. No matter how hard he tried, the monk could not find any peace. Many years passed away. The monk grew old, and the visitor never returned. The monk’s soul was in a state of distress as visions of the box filled his every waking hour, and haunted his dreams. One day he could tolerate it no more. He took the box, and his few belongings, and set out on a pilgrimage to find its owner and return it.
For years the monk wandered across the land restlessly. No one he talked to had ever seen or heard of the visitor. One day as he was traveling down a long road the monk contracted a strange illness. He became pale and weak. Terrible visions followed him wherever he went, and he knew that he was soon to die. In his last moments, the monk’s will broke. He tore open his bag and retrieved the box, desperately needing to know what was inside. As he opened the lid, his eyes fell upon a small key. He picked it up and examined it closely, trying to find its purpose. Trying to find any meaning in this thing that had haunted him for so long. As he examined the key, a door suddenly appeared before him. Hysteria had affected him, for he never questioned it. He quickly inserted the key, and it fit. The door swung open, and he stepped through without hesitation.
Three years later his body was found in a small town miles away, horribly mutilated. His eyes scratched out, his mouth sewn shut, his limbs stretched and torn, and his heart burned black. The villagers buried him in a deep grave on the edge of the forest and never spoke of the strange incident again. It was said that inside the monk’s blackened heart was placed a seed which contained his memories from that place he had been, because some time later a tree sprouted from his grave. It was said that he lived on in this tree. He no longer searches for the lost visitor, though. Now he wanders the land trying to make others see what he has seen, and feel what he has felt.

It’s a really old story, actually, which is why I was so upset to find no originality in “The Box” other than a first person narrative.
>> No. 118630
File 134692779113.jpg - (61.13KB , 500x642 , slenderman-2-784777.jpg )
>not knowing about Slenderman
>year of the pegasus
>> No. 118631
I knew about that already.
>> No. 118633
File 134692793492.jpg - (16.54KB , 294x300 , egg-on-face1-294x300.jpg )
Welp, that explains why it felt so "classic" to me.

And here I thought that it just came from how Mr. Magnet was trying to emulate Bram Stoker's writing style...
>> No. 118635

>submit the story through the Submission form

Argh, I knew I forgot something. That's the last time I try to do this right before bed. Thank you for pointing that out, and thank you for the swift response. I eagerly await your review.
>> No. 118636
File 134693779429.png - (317.43KB , 1920x1440 , mlfw5609_huge.png )
Holy crap, I've never heard of this before. I can't believe I copied it so closely. Wow... I honestly don't know what to say. I should also note that I know nothing of Slendermane(man) except what I heard. It just never seemed very interesting to me. Funny then, that that's what I apparently inadvertently wrote. I feel like you may think that I was trying to trick you or something. But, I'm being completely honest when I say that I've never ever heard that story before and that as unlikely as that seems I somehow copied it almost word for word. This is kind of freaking me out. Am I really that unoriginal?
>> No. 118639
File 134694085608.png - (16.03KB , 97x125 , file.png )
>Am I really that unoriginal?
"There is nothing new under the sun."

There are only X number of stories to be told, and Y ways to tell them. It's part of why Hollywood and television have been running out of ideas. Creators inadvertently parallel each other all the time--although rarely this closely--so it's something you just have to accept as a occupational hazard. Once I wrote a closing line to an essay that was almost a word-for-word match to a great author--I want to say Kipling--even though I'd never read nor heard the tale it came from.

Usually such parallels are minor enough that you can just live with them, but this one... Ouch.

Glad to hear it wasn't done a-purpose, though.
>> No. 118642
Damn. Well... I guess the only thing I can do is try to change the speech some to not be a freakin' copy of Slendermane. As for the rest though, I'd have to re-write the entire story and I'm just not willing to do that. I guess I'll just have to live with it knowing that I didn't copy it on purpose so that makes it somewhat okay.

>Usually such parallels are minor enough that you can just live with them, but this one... Ouch.
I knew that story wasn't like groundbreaking or anything, but I didn't realize it was so close to another story already done.
>> No. 118643
File 134694455029.png - (286.91KB , 504x480 , 132475907341.png )
>Comments in-doc

Before I get into anything else, I just want to say something on behalf of your synopsis: Lose the "Mane 6" part. Not even counting the fact that you're using a numeral in something akin to literature, its a meta/fan-created term. Just say the names of the characters.

Now for the actual review:
Catch the reader's attention? Check
Set the stage for subsequent chapters? Check
Doesn't smother the reader with exposition? Check
Congratulations, you have the makings of a good prologue right there.

As far as the plot goes, not much happens here. Shining gets a call, and sees what damage has been done. And then there's good reason to believe Twilight dunit. You know, outside of the out-of-character implications. The good news is that Shining and Twilight are sort of distanced by this presumed point in time, even after the wedding, so its a little excusable for Shining.

Only things I'd worry about are some words and phrases you seemed to latch onto between paragraphs (I'm pretty sure every writer tends to do this unintentionally), and a few quick odd points in the plot. I'll go more into the repeated problems in the Chapter 1 section.

Chapter 1
Just as soon as Twilight is accused, she's found not guilty. Then you spend the early parts of the chapter with Luna, showing off her power, annnd then the plot resumes. Granted, after reading the whole thing, I get why you have the part with Luna, but at the time it seems so insignificant and time-wasting.

Biggest issue of plot here was how quickly Twilight just jumped to "The Elements of Harmony". This is the epitome of "plot convenience" in this story. I don't care if it extends your story's word count, you need something better to tie this into the story, something that'll bring it to Twilight or Shining's mind besides an ass-pull.

Believe it or not, your super-villain, who feels so much like a fate-preaching magical Joker it's not even funny, is actually a good thing for this story. He's evil, he's overconfident and cocky, he's mysterious, and best of all he's deluded. Or at least he seems that way to the reader and the protagonists, going on and on about fate like he does. Well done there.

Other plot issues aren't as major, positive or negative, but I've marked them with comments. Most have to do with that plot-convenience issue, unfortunately.

I remember reading somewhere that if you write a series of coincidences, they should always work against the favor of the protagonists. Bear that in mind, and you might even pick up a few more issues than I noticed.

Mind your indents, your ponyspeak (anypony, everypony, etc.), and your admittedly impressive vocabulary. A reader shouldn't have to have a dictionary on hand to refer to while going through your work. Not that your writing is quite that bad, but it really pushes it in some pllaces.

Keep convenience in check, even if it seems to streamline plot pacing.

Avoid cliches and memetic/fan-centric content, and keep characters in-character.

For the most part, I liked this, and I'd keep reading had I just found this somewhere. What you do well is in keeping reader interest, moving the plot (and action) along and leaving open-ended questions with each chapter. Don't cliffhanger every chapter though, or that will get stale and lose its effect. For the first couple, however, it helps draw the reader in to more.

I think plot should be your bigger concern over narrative structure. I found myself questioning plot points more than phrasing and wording, although there were a few spots I couldn't let slip by unnoticed.

Overall, this is pretty good, just needing a little extra polish, and maybe another once-over from a different set of eyes, then it'd be a nice damn opener to a potentially great Adventure story. It has all the makings for it, anyway. It's a tad dark, but otherwise well-fitting for a pony story (and the Saturday-morning-cartoon villain certainly helps). Keep it up, and I can see this story turning out pretty well.
>> No. 118646
File 134695047320.jpg - (312.05KB , 631x762 , 47266 - artist-fiarel bedhair cute_overdose morning_ponies rainbow_dash.jpg )

I see you have an asterisk thar! Let's see what we've got.

>might want to try using spaces around EM dashes like this
You don’t space em dashes. En dashes can be used for the same appositive structuring, and those do have a space on either side, but I really prefer the em dash for versatility.
Also, em dashes and other punctuation? No.

I’d say be a bit more careful mate; you’re throwing in a lot of personal opinion in regards to appropriate word choice or phrasing, and it seems more often than not that you’re just unfamiliar with the piece in question. Be sure to delineate more clearly what’s your opinion and what you know to be grammatically objectionable; writers are impressionable creatures.

Don’t forget to call an author out on random capitalization, especially with titles.

Missed a few dialogue tagging mistakes.

Good job catching redundant narration and missed indentation.

>heavily-armed guards
Let this slip past you. There be a rule against that.

It’s a bit of a balancing act, really—we want to lean toward *encouraging* expansion of vocabulary, rather than restricting it. In my estimation, the author is hardly waxing erudite.

Author is inconsistent with keeping punctuation within single quotations, and I didn’t note any brit-spelled words on the skim, so all punctuation should be within quotations.

You do a pretty decent job of catching word repetition, structuring, and OOC issues, though you could stand to brush up on your attention to detail, and being careful about letting your objectivity waver—or if it does, then let the writer know. Remember, in the end, if you don’t *know* if something is a mistake, it’s best to highlight it just in case, and so you can potentially improve yourself.

>ps, cliffhangers never get stale :P
>> No. 118661
File 134695780894.png - (283.99KB , 900x755 , scootaloo__s_butterfly_by_glamourkat-d396t7u.png )
Well, if it was unintentional I suppose I can appreciate it. I did a similar thing with "Bubbles". Speaking of which, that may or may not find its way back through here in the next few weeks. >.>
A closer look reveals two things:
1) You actually have added details and plot elements that weren't in the ~500 words of the original story.
2) I was really cranky this morning. I had an exam today and I couldn't sleep last night. Sorry about that.
>> No. 118663
File 134695834686.png - (85.54KB , 772x872 , Lyra131483323720.png )
>Speaking of which, that may or may not find its way back through here in the next few weeks.
>> No. 118668
File 134695997740.png - (264.14KB , 700x700 , mlfw4583-1335645456658.png )
> I was really cranky this morning. I had an exam today and I couldn't sleep last night. Sorry about that.
Don't worry about it. I didn't take it personally, even if it originally was personal. Anyway, if I'm understanding this correctly than you think a little better of this story than you did upon your first reading. You did leave a comment saying that I added absolutely nothing to the original story, which I was confused about at first since I had never read Slendermane(man). Now that you understand that I wasn't trying to copy that story do think it would be too much to ask for your opinion of it now, especially since you're not cranky anymore? Definitely not asking for a review, just an opinion.
>> No. 118670
File 134696029287.png - (65.48KB , 180x262 , 133956615642.png )
Look man, I apologize for making you the unfortunate first second victim of the original draft, MintyRest was the first but it's been rewritten; it's not the same story anymore, and I've explained this to you about three or four times already. Don't read it if you don't want to but could you please just let the issue die?
I got banned twice, isn't that enough?
>> No. 118674
File 134696154872.jpg - (11.50KB , 320x296 , 104.jpg )
>I got banned twice
Preemptively claiming if you don't mind a bit of a wait.
>> No. 118675
File 134696165295.png - (70.59KB , 200x201 , Rainbow Dash131603958633.png )
Okay, I'll forgive you.

Could you please stop posting exclusively as Scootaloo, though. It makes it harder to forget the story in question when I see them.
>> No. 118677
Tags: [Adventure]

Synopsis: Armed and trained, and with experience as forest rangers, Finesse and his wolf Ray are prepared for the next part in their journey, the Everfree Forest. Before they go, they intended to pass through Ponyville, where, according to Princess Celestia, her apprentice should give them some advice, but after meeting an old friend that is not so happy to see them, their plan changes. Now, they need to convince Fluttershy, and her friends, that they did not attempt to kill her years ago.


Just the first chapter.

I'm new to this, so I'm especially looking for any common mistakes. Hopefully I didn't wreck anything too much.
>> No. 118679
File 134696386574.jpg - (203.29KB , 866x1100 , Derpy146073 - artist gsphere derpy_hooves eyepatch.jpg )
>Finesse and his wolf Ray
Not a timberwolf? Aww, I really want someone to write a story about them.

By the way, I assume that, since your story is about an original character, you have put him through the Gary Stu test. On the off chance that you haven't: http://www.springhole.net/writing/marysue.htm
>> No. 118684
File 134696534145.png - (100.10KB , 400x278 , Trixie the magnificent croped.png )
I'm tentatively interested in this, but you might want to check your Gdocs link. I clicked on it and there's nothing there, just a blank document.
>> No. 118690
File 134696746047.png - (114.23KB , 319x466 , 181309_336031333139585_1404126637_n.png )
Fine. I'm sick of that usertag anyway. Raindrops from here on out, unless I'm doing a review.
>Scootaloo Banned
>> No. 118692
File 134696897038.png - (184.16KB , 838x954 , rainbow_dash___concerned_by_midnite99-d4ehwlv.png )

Jeez, it sounds like some unspeakable crime had occurred. What happened exactly?
>> No. 118696
>unspeakable crime.
>ask for it to be spoken about
>Looks at his copy of the story
>> No. 118699
File 134697420897.png - (68.94KB , 760x1052 , rainbow_dash_by_thenaro-d4udka0.png )
Does anyone have a copy of his original? I'd like to see.
>> No. 118701
There's a reason we don't speak of it here. If you want to see it that badly, please seek out the author via PM in an IRC or try to find an old post that contains an email address in the nick so you can contact him. We're not going to clutter up a review thread with this.
>> No. 118703
I won't risk getting banned by talking about it here. If you want to hear the whole story, query me in the #fic IRC and I'll tell you.

Link: http://derpy.me/6DBGi
>> No. 118704
File 134697564937.png - (66.09KB , 256x289 )

... you guys are being silly. Nobody's going to ban you for talking about the fic in question.

If you want to take it off-site, feel free, but I'd rather folks not feel like we're going to toss banhammers around willy nilly.
>> No. 118707

We have talked about the story quite a couple of times and we have had discussion of similar content before on the board without everyone freaking out. Hell, the only reason he got banned was because he linked to it, twice, which is kind of logical because that content shouldn't be linked here anyway.


That link might get me a ban because of the content being so offensive to everyone here, but it kind of does apply to the discussion.

So, Pinkie here is right, what banhammer are you talking guys?
>> No. 118713
File 134697653179.png - (86.77KB , 500x500 , rainbow_dash___rd_you_are_most_beautiful_pony____by_konradelite-d529j7b.png )

Yo, alexmagnet, is this a formal review claim or are you just interested cause I'd like to dissect this one.


Lol, I don't see anythign wrong with the picture. Quite funny, actually.
>> No. 118716
On a related note, this document will open only if you add /edit afterwards, otherwise googledocs doesn't recognize that address and creates a whole new document for you.
>> No. 118720
File 134697861594.png - (73.20KB , 125x125 , 132631965934.png )
Whoa wait what? Geez guys, It's old news. Like, as long as I've been on this board old. If you're that curious, my email's in the field, other than that, I think this issue has outlived its welcome.

Hi, !!PinkiePie.
>> No. 118721
File 134697885143.png - (628.12KB , 940x777 )

Hi Raindrops.

Can't stay and chat, don't want to be off-topic. Just happy to lend a hand, y'know? Have a good evening.
>> No. 118730
File 134698443060.jpg - (56.30KB , 500x495 , 57544.jpg )
>Yo, alexmagnet, is this a formal review claim or are you just interested cause I'd like to dissect this one.
Be my guest, I was just stating that the initial story idea interested me. Feel free to review it.

However, if I may offer some of my inexpert opinions based off my brief skim. I noticed some minor LUS issues and the random font changes, though I doubt they are intentional, are kind of annoying, and distracting as well. Other than that though it seems to be relatively free of basic grammatical errors, which is good, and the story seemed to be somewhat interesting. Just a skim though, didn't have time to actually read it. Good luck, Shoeblock. I look forward to the review so I can see if this is worth a full read-through.
>> No. 118735

Thank you, Azure Spark, for your extremely quick review.

I've sent you an email with my response. I'd like to discuss a few things, if that's all right.
>> No. 118737
Thanks very much, I'll look forward to that review!
>> No. 118741
File 134699057748.png - (192.10KB , 486x486 , Rainbow-Dash-American-salute-486.png )

Ok, I shall be performing my experiments on this story.

>Good luck, Shoeblock. I look forward to the review so I can see if this is worth a full read-through.

Thanks, broski. I will not let your sacrifice be in vain.
>> No. 118746
File 134699331942.png - (257.60KB , 1024x768 , why_would_you_bring_me_here__by_thelivingmachine02-d54iknx.png )
So was >>118661 a joke, then? Because I was serious.

If you have a version that can be posted here, I'll review it.

Hay, I'll review it either way--just PM me on FiMFiction. (I prefer to avoid e-mails; call it one of my... eccentricities.)

>Posting Scootaloo because I don't let the Nyan keep me down. ;P
>> No. 118747
File 134699349977.png - (142.62KB , 800x981 , i_just_don__t_know_what_went_wrong_by_404compliant-d4n6nuf.png )
Seems like I messed up the link. Sorry!


Any way to fix it in the queue?
>> No. 118751
File 134699591113.png - (168.47KB , 1000x1000 , 132672748496s.png )
I still need to go through and make the necessary edits from way back When Seattle looked at it, but once I'm through with that, it's all yours if you want it. Anyway, we've used up far more than a fair share of the thread already. If you still want to contact me about it, my email's in the email field, and I'm also on Fimfiction.
>> No. 118778
File 134705130838.png - (717.60KB , 2000x2000 , 134638014542.png )
Just... don't hate me. I typed this up as an attempt to overcome writer's block, and in the interest of progress, I chose to ignore any and all mistakes I made. I figure it might be fun to toss this around and see if it could be improved. Maybe story forge or something, but anyway:

Title - A Really Bad Fanfic
Author - Anonymous
Tags - Normal, Shipping
Word count - ~1000
Synopsis - ScootaBelle Shipping
>> No. 118779
Link updated
>> No. 118781
Did you put a link into the submission guide? Cause I don't see any here, and this really not around 1k words.
>> No. 118784
File 134705492863.jpg - (42.62KB , 687x384 , 132619922357.jpg )
link - https://docs.google.com/document/d/1aBs1yWBFgkf-u6_iYYRfUbkbPuSmnjIBePyfPXj0f5o/edit?pli=1
>> No. 118785
File 134705536665.png - (45.43KB , 1196x668 , Rainbow-Dash-American-salute-486.png )

WTF, broski. Are you trolling us? Basically, what I read from your post is that you took a dump, put it on a plate, and now you want people to analyze it.

What are you doing, bro?

But, eh eh. I'll take it. I need to practice my satirical writing anyway if you don't mind.

If the story is as bad as you say, I will rain down hell upon you.
>> No. 118794
Same here. I'll say this... it's not good.
>> No. 118795
File 134706152149.png - (285.72KB , 486x704 , 132641408941.png )
By Bronethus, posted 8/25. It's been in the queue for a while and the word count is right up my alley.

I need to come in here more often. Thanks for the review.

You raise some valid point and concerns. I'll be the first to admit that my grammatical skills are somewhat lacking. I think that's why my grammar sections are always so long winded, because most the time I'm talking out my flank in that regard.

One thing that would really help my formatting would be to know the exact character limit on ponychan posts. It seems massive, but I've heard a few posters complain about getting cut off occasionally, which is something I would like to try and avoid if at all possible, or at the very least break the review into discernible parts
>> No. 118796
File 134706180810.png - (79.82KB , 512x512 , Rainbow-Dash-American-salute-486.png )

Ok. To be fair, let’s start with all the good things that could be found in your “fic”.

The Good

Ok, let’s move on to the fun shall we?

The Bad and the Ugly

>A Really Bad Fanfic

Seriously? WTF is that. You spent the time (probably like 5 minutes) writing this and you don’t give it a proper title? What kind of writer are you? And plus, you can’t even get the title right. It shouldn’t be “A Really Bad Fanfic”, its more like “An Absolutely, Disgusting, Appalling, Vile, Revolting, Disastrous, Horrible, Abomination, PoS fic”

You’re a disgrace of a writer.

I doubt this is writer’s block, you’re probably just too ashamed to say you actually tried on this. In that case, good. You can get the pity vote.

>Tags - Normal

Normal? Normal? Please explain to me what “Normal” is. Normal doesn’t apply to a type of story. Are you that dumb? Oh, if you meant “Normal” as in difficulty like in a game thats wrong too. You should have said “Impossible” cause I couldn’t go one sentence without wanting to cut my eyeballs out of my head.

>Synopsis - ScootaBelle Shipping

This is just...just...ughhh. Does that look like a brief summary to you? If it does, you got real serious issues bud, I mean I can’t believe they let you have a computer in the asylum your locked up in. Hands down, this is the worst synopsis I’ve ever seen.

Moving on to the "story" (if you can it that.)

>It was a beautiful spring day in Ponyville. The flowers were growing, the birds were singing, the sun was shining, and need I even mention the bees and the trees. The white unicorn filly and her orange pegasus friend were playing happily in the park, bouncing a ball back and forth between them.

Wait a sec. What am I doing? I really should just post this whole story right here, because everything is wrong. Basically, nothing is right. Nothing.

Why the hell do you randomly talk in first person? Are you sitting there like some pedo staring at the fillies? Don’t even get me started on the weather report opening. Not even writers block could stop a writer from having some form of imagination...My bad, you’re the exception. I would bet you don’t even know what imagination means.

Your characterization is borderline wheelchair retarded. None of these characters would act like this ever. Ever.

Have you even seen a single episode of MLP? Wait, let me guess. No, you haven’t.

>I love you,” she said, kissing her again, and was surprised to find Scootaloo kissing her back.
“Okay, I love you too,” she said, and they both fell asleep together in each other’s hooves.

You’re sick. Sick. Are trying to write out your sick fantasy? I bet you like seeing kids kissing each other, amirite? You're a hardcore pedo, you know that? Your mind must be so twisted to think people want to read about little kids kissing and sleeping together. Keep your fantasies to yourself. We all know what you look at at night.

I hope to God this world will never be cursed with another of your creations ever again.
Please just die in a pit.

Ok, um. If you were actually serious about this than I am sorry. I thought you were trolling so I wanted to give a troll review for fun. This slice-of-life fic could work out, but you need more buildup. It seems like everything happened way too fast. And also please cut the kissing out, it really is disgusting.

Yeah, the story really wasn’t that bad. Well, not as bad as I thought it would be. I didn’t know how far I was allowed to go either, so I toned my review down a lot.

I hope you get over your writers’ block. Keep writing.
>> No. 118802
File 134706810109.gif - (499.81KB , 500x281 , 134626878225.gif )
Oh, my sides.
*wipes tears from eyes* No, I'm not trolling, but if I had known you were going to respond like that I would have posted purely for that response. I had a feeling it was that bad, actually, hence the title. I'm half tempted to actually fix it, and half tempted to leave it just so you can use it as an example of everything not to do. In any case, thanks for the hilarious review, and I'll try not to bother you again. Unless of course—y'know—it's actually good.
>> No. 118804
I'm half tempted to actually go read it now. Best way to know what to do is to know what not to do.

And it's snack sized.
>> No. 118806
File 134707150563.png - (461.90KB , 894x894 , 134578044028.png )
Oh, the character limit? Wasn't it somewhere around 83k?
>> No. 118808
20k characters, last time I asked. That's good enough for about 3.5k words. That's a shit-ton of words.
>> No. 118812
File 134707633402.png - (209.77KB , 600x800 , 4bb0609eec2b2aac4202ef8966345dda-d5010dx.png )
Awesome, thank you. Just to make things easier for you, you saw that I posted googledocs links for the chapters in another post, right? Unless you prefer fimfiction, of course.

There are so many changes I've been dying to make to those chapters since posting them, but I figure it's better to get some feedback first. A) Because it seems weird/rude to change something while someone may be going over it, and B) because I want to be sure the changes I have in mind don't make anything worse. But in any case, I hope you enjoy it anyway.
>> No. 118817
File 134708056303.png - (34.40KB , 373x381 , Relics of A Wounded Soul.png )
Tags: [Sad] [OC] [Dark] [Romance/Shipping]

Freezor Relic was your average pegasus, that is until a tragic accident that cost him dearly. Having moved from his home in Cloudsdale to start a new life, he found a small town known as Ponyville and quickly ran into Twilight Sparkle and her friends.

Twilight, with the help of her friends, will try their best to help Freezor over come his past, and lead a new life in Ponyville.


It's been awhile since I posted a fiction here, party because I forgot about Ponychan, but I figured it would be best to give the first chapter of my fiction a shot here.
>> No. 118820
Oh, this is short. I can take this.
>> No. 118825
File 134708341547.jpg - (127.29KB , 700x544 , Luna77572__UNOPT__safe_princess-celestia_artist-keterok.jpg )
>Comments not enabled.
>> No. 118827
Let me fix that real quick .-.
>> No. 118828
Oh god yes, this'll be much better. I don't usually comment in document, compiling my notes into a single review post once I'm done. But I'm trying some new things in my reviewing technique, and it might behoove you to see my notes, as well as my review. You'll also be able to chat with me as I work, if it appeals to you.
>> No. 118835
File 134708983588.jpg - (20.62KB , 462x465 , Rainbow+Dash+remembers+Cupcakes_+Rainbow+Dash+will+not+forgive+Pinkamena+_08dfe53e804e36d1b92aae.jpg )

Ok, Evya. I’m going to be 100% honest with you right now. I did not decide to pick up your story because it sounded interesting, nor did I pick it because I genuinely wanted to read it. I picked it up cause I thought your synopsis was so badly written that your story would have a million mistakes I could make fun of you for.

Unfortunately, when I opened it up and read it, I was quite disappointed. Not only was the quality of writing about 20x better, it was actually really good and I loved reading it though there were errors. It pains me to say this, but I hope you bring the next chapter here.

Let’s begin:

>Armed and trained, and with experience as forest rangers, Finesse and his wolf Ray are prepared for the next part in their journey, the Everfree Forest. Before they go, they intended to pass through Ponyville, where, according to Princess Celestia, her apprentice should give them some advice, but after meeting an old friend that is not so happy to see them, their plan changes. Now, they need to convince Fluttershy, and her friends, that they did not attempt to kill her years ago.

This is your basic mediocre synopsis. The structure and summary of it are really unoriginal, but it does what it’s supposed to. However, there are a lot of errors in it which make it confusing to read. When directly referencing someone, in this case “Ray”, make sure to put commas around. Also, this sentence:

>Before they go, they intended to pass through Ponyville, where, according to Princess Celestia, her apprentice should give them some advice, but after meeting an old friend that is not so happy to see them, their plan changes.

This is really inconsistent. You talk in the past and the present tense in this sentence. It should look like this,
>After meeting an old friend that “was” not so happy to see them, their plan “changed”.

Unless, you want this written in present then you would have to change your verbs to the present tense.

Also, in the last sentence of the synopsis, who does “her” refer to? Is it Fluttershy or the old friend? It’s pretty unclear.


Your quality of writing was so much better in your main story for some reason. It’s almost like someone else wrote your synopsis. There were only a few minor errors unfortunately that I will point out below.

>“Hello, Derpy, did I receive any –” Twilight stopped asking when she noticed that the mailmare was trembling in fear in front of her.

When using the em dash don’t put a space on either side of it. So, it should look like, “any—”.

>“Arhm, well it’s... Well –”

See Above. You do this quite a lot.

>Derpy had the talent to mess up and create chaos,

Should be, “Derpy has”. I presume she still has the talent to mess up and create chaos. “Had” implies she lost this talent and she doesn’t have it anymore.

>“It’s not a problem at all, and somepony have to talk to him about it.”

When using words such as somebody/somepony and everybody/everypony, they are treated as singular. So the verbs after them must be conjugated in the 3rd person singular. Should look like, “somepony has”.

>I didn’t do anything, but everypony keep saying it’s my fault.

See Above.

>“I hope you’re right.” Derpy put the receipt into her bag. “I have to go and send the rest now. Sorry again for this mess, and Twilight” – Derpy smiled again – ” thanks.”

I have never seen anyone do this before, but I’m pretty sure this is an incorrect use of the em dash. An ellipsis would work better here. So, “Sorry again for this mess, and Twilight...” Derpy smiled again. “...thanks.”

>She made the letter float in front of her for.

What does this even mean?

>“Shine on,
Princess Celestia.”

There shouldn’t be quotes here.

>“You couldn’t possibly chose that old thing

>Why did the princess said so little?

>With that, it went back to be quiet.

>“Celestia must’ve to tell them about me, but all of us?

These are all examples of incorrect tense or conjugation of verbs.

>For a moment Twilight thought she cancelled the spell in mistake

Since, “For a moment” is an introductory phrase, put a comma after it. Also, “she cancelled the spell “by” mistake.”

Besides those, you should never randomly change the font in the middle of a chapter. Keep it consistent. Also, I didn’t mark all your mistakes. That should give you the chance to look for them on your own.


Let’s start with a couple questions:
1.) When did Twilight ask Applejack for help?
2.) When did she go looking for Fluttershy?

Those were just a few things I was a little confused on. Besides that, I’d like to say again that I really liked this. Everything was so well written that it kept me thoroughly interested the whole way through. Even though the beginning was really cliche with Twilight going through her bookshelf and then her receiving a letter, you put your own spin on it and you pulled it off marvelously.

I have to ask. Is Twilight ever going to ever talk to Derpy’s manager? That whole scene did feel slapped in there. Is this vital to the plot? Are you going to expand on this or was this just filler space to increase your word count?

Another thing that I think you did a good job on is the element of mystery you added in. The extra paper found in the letter and the unfinished dialog between Finesse and Ray really made me think about what they could possibly mean. I’d have definitely continued reading if there was more to read. Kudos to you on that.

Jeez, I have to say this again. I think this was really well written. It wasn’t too boring of a story opener and it set up a good solid starting point with a small bit of information to tease the readers’ minds.


Again, you characterizations were spot on, except for one tiny slip on Twilight’s part.

>I’m sure that extra stress ain’t helping you. I think I’ll talk with him,” Twilight said.

“Ain’t” doesn’t sound like a word Twilight would use.

Final Thoughts

Ugh! It feels like since I liked story I didn’t do my job right... Man, I was really hoping to humiliate you too. My pride is tarnished.

Only real problem I can point out is that it felt a bit too cliche in the beginning and you ended it on a cliche note as well.

Hey look, now don’t be letting me saying all these positive things get to your head. I’m just one reviewer and I have my preferences. I don’t want you to get your hopes up only to be shot down by someone else.
>> No. 118857
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>“Hello, Derpy, did I receive any –” Twilight stopped asking when she noticed that the mailmare was trembling in fear in front of her.

>When using the em dash don’t put a space on either side of it. So, it should look like, “any—”.

If I may, he's actually using an en dash there after 'any'. En dashes may have spaces before and after them. Em dashes, as you said, should not have spaces, but since he used an en dash it is acceptable. However, that being said, I've seen it both ways: en dashes with and without spaces. As far as I know, em dashes must not have a space, but en dashes may. I think in this case though, it would be preferable to use em dashes and nix the space. That could just be my bias towards em dashes speaking though, probably since they're so awesome.

Don't quote me on this, because I could be wrong. Though, I'm fairly confident here.
>> No. 118860
File 134712290369.jpg - (10.38KB , 217x232 , mhm.jpg )
En dashes are the lazy man's em dash. Strictly, only em dashes are to serve as breaks, but, eh, nobody'll complain about it too much. With en dashes [as a replacement], spacing becomes personal preference, and I'd prefer having spaces since not having spaces looks cramped, as well as the resulting confusion with hyphens.

Or is it hyphens that are the lazy man's em dash? I've been using a laptop for so long that - is the only one I use anymore...
>> No. 118864
Even with em dashes you will find writers putting spaces around them. In general, just be consistent with them and most people won't care (to not say all people).
>> No. 118865
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Idk, bro. Twilight was interrupted in her dialogue so doesn't that mean an em dash should be used?

En dashes aren't used for interruptions. Right?
>> No. 118869
Actually alex, you'll see that's a hyphen, not an en dash.

Casca an the new guy are correct (hi btw new guy), except for the "en dashes are the lazy man's em dash".
En dashes tend to be use by Europeans, em dashes by Americans. Why is the em dash superior? Because it can create an appositive AND to a sentence break; en dashes cannot do the latter.

> hyphens that are the lazy man's em dash?
Yep, and you'll be called on it by anyone worth their salt.
>> No. 118873
Tags: [Slice of Life]

Synopsis: For most of the their lives the Shadowbolts have practiced to one day be allowed to perform in Canterlot. From flight camp to performances the three have worked hard to obtain their dream even sinking so low as to help a prospective dictator. But when push comes to shove can the team stick it through?
>> No. 118874

Sorry forgot the link. Gotta go soon and in the rush forgot the link.
>> No. 118875
File 134712942087.png - (116.32KB , 900x512 , tumblr_m74vxgbTJS1qc5ffho1_1280.png )

>Actually alex, you'll see that's a hyphen, not an en dash.

Oh, that's strange. When I copy/pasted the em dash didn't show up. It came out as a dash.

>Casca an the new guy are correct (hi btw new guy)


I think I'm going to like being a part of this big 'ole happy reviewer family.
>> No. 118876
I rather like having all the new people around. The queue's being kept in check so much that I've only had to review 2 stories in the last month. Excelsior!
>> No. 118879
Then I suggest not reading most copies of The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles (I don't know if they have made new editions). They all use hyphens and dashes interchangeably. As do a couple other published books.

For better or for worse, the ellipsis, the dashes and hyphens, and conjunctions seem to have everyone doing whatever they want (so much so that you won't find the style guides agreeing with each other, no matter which one you think more proper).
>> No. 118880
Fair enough. I was prepared to be corrected anyways.

>Oh, that's strange. When I copy/pasted the em dash didn't show up. It came out as a dash.
If that's the case then that means it was originally an em dash, correct? If so, then you were right. You aren't supposed to put spaces around em dashes.

Either way, Seattle is right, em dashes are superior in every way to en dashes. **** en dashes.
>> No. 118916
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Hurray! My first review! Here’s hoping it isn’t a train wreck. And that I figured out how to format on this site.

May it be of some use to you.

Okay, first things first, I liked your story. The characters are believable, the grammar is good, and the writing is solid. You don’t have any crippling problems, just things that need a little work. So, with that said, let’s address the points you requested be covered.


You do a good job of creating a setting that serves the tone of the story, and helps set the mood for the rest of the work.

You said that you wanted to create a setting that was serene and quiet, while also being a little dark and disturbing. In the first, you have succeeded. You do a good job of capturing the serenity of nighttime, and of keeping the action of the working pegasi at enough of a remove that the reader is aware of it, but it never interferes with the calm tone of Flitter’s physical location. As for dark and disturbing, I didn’t get any of that. But I don’t think that’s a bad thing. This kind of story, where the emotions of the character are what you are emphasizing, doesn’t need anything other than what you have already provided. When a setting is disturbing, it starts to become a character in itself, and while some stories need that, this isn’t one of them.


Pacing was your biggest issue in this story. It wasn’t bad enough to be a deal breaker, or even bad enough to really upset me, but it is an issue.

I would suggest you read this story to yourself a couple of times. You should find that it breaks into two fairly obvious sections. You have the first section, in which Flitter reminisces about the past and her failings as a pony, and then you have the second, where she interacts with Dumb-Bell and the story moves towards its conclusion.

These two sections feel almost like different stories, and it’s not because you did a bad job in the transition. The problem is that the first section is slow and ponderous, to the point it gets dry and slightly boring, while the second moves along well, and the characters are developed through their interactions. Flitter simply spends too much time not doing anything in the first section, and the brief interruptions from the other pegasi and the flashbacks don’t do anything to address that.

While I understand that this is a fic mostly about who Flitter is, and the problems she has with herself, you really need to do something about how slow it feels at times. The first section could stand to be shorter, and a couple flashbacks cut. You don’t want to bore the reader by jumping into the past too often.

As for the flashbacks themselves, when they worked, they worked well, and when they didn’t, it was pretty noticeable. You can see my notes for the specific offenders, but I think you need to look at these and determine which ones really advance plot and character, and which ones should be cut. Again, cutting down the length of the first section will go a long way towards improving the pace of this story.


You write believable dialogue, most of the time. There is a little repetition that makes it feel awkward at times, but no major punctuation errors that I could find (though the other folks here would know better than I would about that).

You have a tendency to have long strings of dialogue with no action. Specific examples in my notes, but it would be a good idea to spice things up. It doesn’t have to be anything big, but give us an idea of what’s happening around them every once in awhile. I get the feeling you think about this, since you do it well when you do it, but it looks like dialogue trains have a tendency to slip out of your control now and then.


This was one of the things I was most pleased with in your fic, though maybe not for the reasons you’d been hoping. Specifically, I think you did a very good job with Dumb-Bell, but Flitter needs a little work.

You develop Flitter as an insecure mare with a bit of a sister complex and a bad habit of making fun of others to hide her own faults. This is good, but it all feels very surface level. This is in large part because her character development is almost exclusively done in the first section, the part that feels stretched. This is another problem that could be helped (though not fixed entirely) by shortening the first section. There are just too many words there for her character traits to really shine through.

As for Dumb-Bell, I really liked him. His character is developed almost entirely with dialogue and action, and as such he feels real. You manage to give us basically his life story without ever making it feel like you’re doing it, and we get a great sense of who he is and what his motivations are. Now you just need to figure out how to do the same for Flitter.

The scene with him and Rainbow Dash is great, because it concludes his storyline wonderfully, giving him a sense of closure as far as the story is concerned. Flitter never gets this moment, but the ending you gave her still works well, which is good.

Nitpicks and whatnot

You write well, but there are times when something works, and times when something very similar doesn’t. Your first paragraph has examples of what I mean.

>The full moon of midnight swallowed the sky above her, and the islands of cumulus were almost as bright as day under the silver glow.

This isn’t wrong, but it just doesn’t quite do what you want it to.

>Around her, a small archipelago of curly, cumulus platforms floated over an abyss.

This next sentence, on the other hand, is very nice. It does what the first one was trying to do, but much better.

>Far behind the mare, Cloudsdale gleamed like an elaborate mountain.

And then the last one doesn’t quite work again. This one is mostly because of the word ‘elaborate’ but there are examples of this throughout. Try reading the whole thing out loud. That should give you a good sense of which of these kinds of sentences work, and which don’t.

Some of your early descriptions of clouds and the actions of the pegasi read a little too much like a play-by-play. Take a close look at each of these paragraphs, and see what you can cut to smooth out the paragraphs. Remember, this is all in service of making the pace better.

Watch your repetition. You tend to describe the setting around Flitter a bit more often than is necessary, and some of the cuts to the other pegasi break the flow of her mood. Again, this is an example of something you do working well when it works, and really detracting when it doesn’t . You just need to find that happy medium.

Other than that, there isn’t too much you really have to worry about. I’ll link you to my notes doc, which should give you some specific examples of the things I mentioned.


I don’t have a ton of experience with EQD, but this shouldn’t have much trouble getting in there with a little work, and if they have any more problems, they’ll tell you.

Feel free to ask if you have any questions. I hope this review gives you some idea of where to go next.

Also, seeing as this is my first review, if anyone else finds things I overlooked, please feel free to mention them.
>> No. 118919
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I'll see what I can do to get you on EqD.
>> No. 118923
learning so much just hanging around this thread
>> No. 118924
File 134718387799.jpg - (8.63KB , 192x192 , claimed.jpg )
>The full moon of midnight swallowed the sky above her, and the islands of cumulus were almost as bright as day under the silver glow.
>This isn’t wrong, but it just doesn’t quite do what you want it to.
>Around her, a small archipelago of curly, cumulus platforms floated over an abyss.
If you could elaborate a bit on why you think it works/doesn't work, that might be more helpful for the author when he/she tries to self-edit the rest of it. The rest of your review seems fine though.

Also, claiming >>118873 even though it's at the bottom of the queue and rahhhhh.
>> No. 118925
File 134719563484.jpg - (12.42KB , 267x189 , frown.jpg )
Let's cut to the chase. tl;dr, you've got a long way to go in terms of mechanics, and your plot suffers from believability issues.

I like your idea. I like the idea of flight camp rejects banding together to form a group that chases their dreams. I like even more the fact that this group of rejects were pushed into desperation, and made a deal with the dark side to get what they want. But I really, really dislike your presentation. Here's a list of reasons why.

You have a lot of missing punctuation. It's systemic. It's everywhere. Grif has given you a link to something called Ezn's guide in the doc. Please read it. All of it. It will help you. And here's the link again, in case you missed it: http://derpy.me/EznGuide

I cannot stress how much your story will improve if you fixed the punctuation alone. But even then, you've still got some ways to go.

Run-on sentences, generally amateurish writing
Is this your first fanfic?

This is not an insult. It's a curiousity, bordering on suspicion. If it is, I actually want to commend you for not going with a self-insert Brony-in-Equestria route, and I want to state again that I like your concept. However, there's a distinct green-ness to your writing that reminded me of something a 12-year-old would write - and I stand by that statement. There's a lack of logical sequencing to the things presented in your sentences. Most of them are too long to digest, even if one tries to ignore the lack of commas. The actions are mostly wooden and lack life. There's a massive tell problem, the concept of which I've introduced to you. Since show vs. tell and putting emotion into your words are advanced skills, we'll not go any further into them for the time being.

How long is too long? A rule of thumb is that if you can read it out aloud, comfortably, then it's okay. Commas, all punctuation really, are there for the purpose of putting breaks to help the reader follow through, but all the commas in the world will not help an overly long sentence be long; in fact, relying on punctuation alone to break up your sentence sometimes backfires, because the reader can and will pick up on it, like this sentence you're reading right now. See?

Characters and Plot
You have characters that I actually managed to feel a little sorry for. Do you know why? Because you did something right with the part when they talked about their memories together - you showed me characters with hopes and dreams and perseverance. You developed them, and there's a universal appeal to people who try and try again. But then all of that went down the drain when you pulled out that Nightmare Moon thing, because it was too soon for that.

Make us care about your characters first before you try to pull off something as ambitious as a tie-in to canon. Show us their personalities and thoughts and motives, so that we're intrigued enough to stick around. But you can't do that unless your mechanics, i.e. punctuation and all that, are polished up.

Grif's talked about plotholes briefly in the comments, and I'll be asking him to say more on that.

I asked you not to change anything until you've read this. Why? Because I want you to stop writing for a moment and start reading. I'm not telling you to quit, I'm telling you to take a research break. Read and compare your prose to what you read. See where emotions are presented and how characters interact. Notice how actions are played out and how scenery is set. I linked you to Vimbert's "Learn to Fly", which is a good place to start; also, perhaps, look up Cloudy Skies' "Within and Without", which is one of my personal recommendations. And when you get a grasp of what a story should look like, things will be a good deal clearer to you.

To close, here's a little something: http://www.fanfiction.net/s/8447834/1/A-new-life-and-a-new-home

It's a self-insert Brony-in-Equestria. It has cleaner mechanics than yours, by a bit, as well as slightly better writing. But the concept is repulsive. And the thing is, you're here, and you're looking to improve. And that's something I can respect. So, yes; you've got a long way to go, but keep at the path, and you will get somewhere.
>> No. 118926
Hello and here's my ninja (co)review for the day.

As you are well aware, Casca has roped me in for a second opinion and well, here it is. He has already covered your mechanical issues, so I'll just talk more about what I felt your story was going in terms of plot.

Simply put, your story as it stands, do not mesh into any of the canon timeline that the show has presented to us. Let's examine what is considered canon:

Fact: the Shadowbolts was first mentioned in S1 opener as part of Nightmare Moon's subtle illusions to persuade Rainbow Dash to join her. They disappear in her mist-like magic after failing.

From here, there is no indication that was real and the Shadowbolts, if such a group existed, was not there in the forest. Your story directly implies that they were real and had a part in trying to convince Rainbow Dash. Furthermore, you had them interact with Nightmare Moon seemingly before she was even released. (She was only out for a night, remember.) As such, your story directly conflicts with the show. You really need to re-examine the story/plot and try to fit it better into the timeline of the show.

Either make this take place in the past, before Luna's first transformation to Nightmare Moon, or just use a completely different aerial team for the purposes of your story. That way, you don't even need to bend over backwards to fit your story into established canon and it would be more original anyway, since I have yet to see anyone writing about an alternate flying team apart from the Wonderbolts/Shadowbolts.

As for your writing, well Casca mentioned it seemed amateurish. I agree, for a variety of reasons. Your word choices and sentence construction betrays a very simple flow of thought. Don't feel bad. Everyone starts that way. What is important however, is for you to examine how better writers phrase their sentences and /learn/. I cannot stress this enough.

Keep writing bro.
>> No. 118927
File 134720125203.png - (486.83KB , 713x585 , mlfw2659-Fluttershy_thinking.png )

I think this is one of those things that comes down to how it feels, and in this case word choice is a big part of why I think it feels awkward.

>The full moon of midnight swallowed the sky above her, and the islands of cumulus were almost as bright as day under the silver glow.

The phrase 'The full moon of midnight' feels like something that would be written by someone trying too hard to describe a setting. It doesn't do anything more than simply saying 'the full moon'. It's sort of hard to describe, but when a phrase or sentence goes longer than you were expecting it to, it sort of trips you up. It's like when you get to the bottom of a flight of stairs and try to take one more step down. I find this occurs most often when trying to force a description.

This sentence could be fixed by rearranging it into something like, "The full moon swallowed the sky above her, the islands of cumulus almost as bright as day under its silver glow."

That's just a suggestion though, there are a lot of other ways it could be done.

>Around her, a small archipelago of curly, cumulus platforms floated over an abyss.

As for why this one works, it feels very streamlined. None of the words seem superfluous; they are all doing something and they flow very well. They paint a vivid picture without being distracting.

Hopefully this helps clarify. It ends up being largely a matter of preference, really, but streamlining these sorts of sentences can go a long way towards making a story flow better.

Thanks for pointing that out, Casca, it definitely needed some clarification. Hopefully this makes sense to people other than me. Describing the things in my head is hard.
>> No. 118937
File 134720861365.png - (149.31KB , 900x720 , suwako_hngg.png )
Very well explained. Couldn't have described it better myself. ^_^
>> No. 118947
Don't worry, I won't hold it against you if it fails one more time.
>> No. 118948
Thank you!
>> No. 118949
>unwanted entrance:

>Around her, a small archipelago of curly, cumulus platforms floated over an abyss.

That second comma doesn't belong there. You have an adverb and an "adjective" close to each other, which means the comma there is separating the description for no reason. You can't really put an and between curly and cumulus, so that comma isn't suppose to be there.

>OCD out.
>> No. 118953

For a first review, this was excellently written, and it gave precisely the information I needed. You've clearly put a great amount of effort into it. Thank you! :-)

I've already begun editing according to your guidelines, as set out in your review and in the g.doc you attached (thanks especially for giving examples, as they are always a great help when revising). Most of the technical aspects are already being addressed, such as clunky sentence structures, odd grammar, and unnecessary details. I've also cut one of the flashbacks (the one about the weather factory blunder) and I intend to make a subplot which will expand the three remaining ones into something more coherent and relevant (and therefore more interesting, or so I hope).

I must admit I was surprised at some of the elements you brought to my attention, the characterization especially. I wouldn't want Flitter to be upstaged, as she's the central character, so I must address this. Perhaps Flitter could actually do something in the flashbacks (hence the subplot idea), or I could rewrite the ending to make it more like Dumb-Bell's closure, or do both. Certainly, I think I need to address the fact that Dumb-Bell seems to be better developed by comparison, because I'd rather Flitter was at least equally engaging.

Now that you've brought them to my attention, I agree wholeheartedly with your points on pacing and dialogue. The first section needs to spend less time world-building (I admit I get sidetracked by the details a lot, but I'll make an effort to check this sort of thing in the future) and more time giving Flitter some substance. I'll have to add some action to that dialogue train, too, as in hindsight I can see quite clearly what you mean when you point out it's detached from what's going on elsewhere.

I'll try not to radically alter too much; the most radical change will happen to the flashbacks, followed by the dialogue and the ending. Your feedback was encouraging and positive, though, so it seems I'm doing plenty of other things right and I'd hate to spoil that.

All in all, I'm very happy with the review. Thanks again for taking the time to help me improve my writing and editing. I'm very grateful for the effort you clearly put in.
>> No. 118955
I'm glad you liked it. There are a few things I want to explain/ask about though:

>She made the letter float in front of her for.
Woops, deleted something and didn't edit the rest, my bad.

>There shouldn’t be quotes here.
I'm confused. it's part of the letter, so shouldn't there still be quotes there? And if those are wrong, wouldn't all the other quotes in the letter be wrong too?

>Plot's questions
Twilight did both during the period between recieving the letter and meeting Rarity. I guess I could have explained it better.

>Derpy's scene.
It's not just a filler, while it's not the most vital scene, nor Twilight is going to meet Derpy's manager during the story, I am going to expand on it latter on.

Thanks for taking the time and giving a look at my fic, it is appreciated.
>> No. 118956

Funnily enough, you're right but for the wrong reason. It's not a case of an adverb-plus-adjective ("curly" is not an adverb), but a case of adjective-plus-noun-phrase. "Cumulus platform" is a noun-phrase, like Diamond Dog or Earth Pony, so the comma serves no purpose. You wouldn't put "big, Diamond Dog"; you'd put "big Diamond Dog". I think I only put the comma in there in the first place because I initially treated the word "cumulus" like an adjective.

That said, I only just realized my mistake when you brought it up, so thanks for pointing out my error.
>> No. 118957


Agreed. This was very well explained. I'm taking your suggestion and putting it in my story.
>> No. 118958
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You story was filled with little punctuation errors. I suggest reading through all of Ezn's guide (linked below) to learn all the grammar/punctuation rules.

But your fic has a bigger problem. Your OC is a total Gary Stu. He is not believable as a character on the show, nor is he relatable to an audience. This isn't too hard to fix, though. Just start your story, showing what his life was like before his accident. Show how he looked just like any other pony. Then, after his accident, maybe show him selling all of his worldly possessions to pay for the mechanics. Also, you must show him learning how to use his new body parts. It couldn't have been easy.

Query me in the #fic IRC if you need me to elaborate.


This will take you to the section on original characters, but read the whole thing: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xemG7BLk2rvAmQCREIaj5wX2ubvmVt7WziEvh7xXV9g/edit#heading=h.60abc0015516
>> No. 118965
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Glad I could be of assistance. I don't think you have too much to worry about, since you clearly know what you're doing for the most part, and you have a good grasp of what needs to be fixed. I would like to see this when you finish making all the changes. I like the idea you had regarding the flashbacks, and I'd be interested to see what you do with it.

Best of luck on your revisions!
>> No. 118975

Oh, I re-looked at the letter. You're right, it should be fine because Twilight is reading it out loud. If she wasn't then quotations would not have been needed.

Thanks for clearing up my other issues and I wish you the best of luck in your writing.
>> No. 118997

Rainbow Dash has everything she wants. A beautiful mare, an amazing group of friends, and the chance to fulfill her lifelong dream. But as tragedy strikes the group of ponies, the world they know and love falls apart around them. The ideals of friendship and kindness break down allowing for vengeance and hatred to grip the nation.

Among the ensuing darkness, the friends stands firm, guarding the last bright light in this darkening world even as they too, begin to fall.

... and despite it all. Nothing is as it seems.

Links ( Commenting has been enabled for Anon Users):

Chapter 1:

Chapter 2:

EQD Notes:

I cannot recommend this for posting.

Look for errors in the following areas:

Comma use
Dash use
Dialogue punctuation
Inconsistent indentation

There are a lot of empty phrases like "the pink pony" used to refer to characters already named in narration that serve little purpose other than to pad word count, since we're told nothing new about the character. These should be replaced with pronouns and names whenever possible.

Other than that, I might suggest adding more of a hook to draw readers in in the first chapter. To those not already invested in the Pinkiedash ship, it's not terribly gripping; there's a lot of exposition and setup

Personal Notes:

The problem with the empty phrases, and with the intro being boring for non-shippers has should be rectified. The errors that me and my editors have trouble finding is the following:

Comma use
Dash use
Dialogue punctuation
Inconsistent indentation

Help will be greatly appreciated.
>> No. 118998
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This... this is the most disgusting thing I have ever read, as you can probably tell from the comments I made in doc.

But... I thought of a way to save it.

Rarity knows how to sew, right? So have her make a plush toy that looks like Applejack and write a fic about that. Have her trying desperately to hide it and include lots of gaynst about how she's worried that Applejack's straight.

Also, read this: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/SoYouWantTo/WriteAYuriManga
>> No. 118999
And claiming this.
>> No. 119003

Commenting/Editing has only been enabled for AzuNyan.

Edited Chapters:

Chapter 3:

Chapter 4:

Chapter 5:

Unedited Chapters:

Chapter 6:

Chapter 7:

Story Outline:
>> No. 119004
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Any particular reason why you're giving him an additional 7 chapters?
>> No. 119009
Because azu's a pretty chill dude.
>> No. 119010

Well sometime's I guess sometimes you don't realize how bad an idea is until someone else tells you. :P

Basically, I went through my list of ideas and picked out the one that seemed the craziest/strangest.

Oh well, you're always going to have duds.

I assume you recommend I just completely dump this and move on then? There's really no way to save it?

Either way, I do appreciate that you took the time to read all the way through and leave comments. So thanks for that.
>> No. 119012
I liked it.Don't believe his lies.
>> No. 119015
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Man, to hell with both en and em dashes. Not because they aren't really useful and awesome, but because I've never encountered a keyboard that has a key for them. It's completely absurd that I have to hold down the alt key and use my number pad to naturally generate one of them.

No way should you drop the story because of a negative review. After AzuNyan's description of it, I just had to check it out to see if it was really that bad. While it's not my cup of tea at all, it isn't half as bad as he makes it out to be. I mean, "Rarity would at least ask Applejack before making a R34 out of her"? Rarity has lied to her friends about far, far less personal things. I think the whole situation is a little out of character for her (but then, to me most shipping of the main six with each other is), but in no way is it something she would *never* do that slaps every fan of hers in the face. Rarity is my favorite pony, and I was not offended by your story.

And to make my post a little more useful, I would like to tell Bed Head that I'm done with my notes for the first two chapters of Shards of Hope, and I can do the other two if you don't mind waiting a little longer.
>> No. 119017
No, don't delete it. Use my idea of Rarity making an Applejack doll. It'll be hilarious!
>> No. 119019
Either that, or try to fix the grammar and style issues pointed out, then submit the revision to another review thread and see what they have to say about the rest.
>> No. 119039

Thanks for the review, I'll try my best to hack away that Gary Stu.
>> No. 119050
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I took my sweet time with this one. Also, always looking for input on my reviewing technique.

In the area of technical merit:

It's obvious that you have a firm control over your basics, and have given a lot of work to make this presentable. However, you're far from flawless. Your most frequent error is with your pronouns, most often in regard to clarity. You need to pay careful consideration to what nouns your pronouns are referring back to. My commentary in document isn't perfect, and my own knowledge isn't encyclopedic, but there were a few times were I had to step back and really consider what was being said, in order to find the source of the pronoun.

Next up is a slight weakness with commas, which is a weakness of my own, as well. There are several instances of fused nonrestrictive clauses. These are phrases that, while they add to the description of the independent clause, ultimately add nothing mechanical to the sentence. If you can remove a phrase from a sentence and not change its meaning or intent, you have a nonrestrictive clause that should be set aside with a comma.

Another point of issue with commas is with coordinating adjectives. That is, a series of descriptive adjectives upon a noun. Some examples of this are 'Large, ornate, blue chest.', 'rheumy, sea-green eyes', and 'sharp, tangy flavor'. You can trade the order of the adjectives around without much effect, so they should be treated like items on a list, with commas in between each item.

You also have some instances of run-on sentences, most frequently of the comma splice form. My little green book tells me there are only seven coordinating conjugates, which are needed to bridge two independent clauses with a comma. They are and, but, or, nor, for, so, and yet. If you have a comma in the sentence, the result had either be the independent clause after an introductory one, a nonrestrictive or subordinate clause after an independent clause, items in a series, or two or more independent clauses separated by one of these coordinated conjugates. There's probably more that someone else will point out, but those are the one's I know.

One last thing. Punctuation. En dashes ('–'), Em dashes ('—'), and Ellipsis ('…') to begin. You've expressed some rage at the first two, I've noticed. There was some commentary in the Training Ground not too long ago about the first two and their differences. Most people will use en dashes to preform the functions as both en and em dashes. En dashes are used to denote something tangential – but needs to be brought to the reader's attention immediately. In my opinion, they are to the comma what the exclamation mark is to the period. The latter will almost always suffice in any given situation, but sometimes you want some more dramatic flare. The em dash is used most often, in my experience, to denote an interruption in a thought process. Generally within dialog. Finally, the ellipsis denotes a lapse, or an omission. Most your problem was just not having your word processor set up to input those automatically for you, as I don't think there's a key for them on most standard keyboards. Plain dashes, ('-') should only be used to create hyphenated compound words. Last but not least, quotes ( “ ” ). Of note for you, is words used as words. If I say “quotes”, as the word, there shouldn't be any other punctuation other than the quotations around that word. Also, when using quotes inside of quotes, apostrophes are used as a form of “single quotes”, but the same rules apply.

Pay attention to your pronouns and their antecedents, study up on your comma use and other punctuation, and tighten up your structure. Break up your run-ons, and get a second opinion on most of this stuff, because grammar is not my strong suite.
Score – 6/10

In the area of stylistic performance:

You suffer a touch from Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, in trying to break the monotony of pronouns and proper nouns being thrown around. But a character's descriptive qualities – their coat color, their eye color, there “insert object here” color, or their title, their rank, their cutie-mark, or any other kind of physical or personality quality the character possesses – does not need to be brought up unless it has been changed, or unless it is relevant. It will rarely be relevant simply for the sake of being relevant.

In reading your combat scenes – which tended to have fantastic grammar – it felt very mechanical. Technically and grammatically correct, but very dry and rhythmic. This happens a bit outside of your combat scenes, as well, but it isn't as prevalent in exposition or dialog scenes. You have a very predictable “Subject verbed noun, <insert conjugate> verbed noun.” style that feels like reading a clock at times. Mix up this repetition with introductory clauses, nonrestrictive clauses, and joined independent clauses.

Speaking of repetition, there were a few instances of repetitious word use. Consecutive sentences beginning with the same word, the same word being used inside consecutive sentences, and sometimes within the same sentence, when synonyms could help to break up that monotony. While you're finding new ways to write things out, there are also a couple instances of needlessly complex sentences. This is a particularly convoluted one:

>Her heart was soaring so high that she almost didn't notice that one creature of the forest had not fled before her terrible march.

Normally, I would put the instances of Zecora's breaks in meter under story and characterization, but I put part of it here because it's obvious you're trying to keep in meter for her. It just isn't happening sometimes. The same holds true for Luna's archaic tongue. Both are better toward chapter three than in chapters one and two, as you become more accustomed to their styles of speech.

Finally, as your EqD pre-reader mentioned, there's quite a few instances of telling, rather than showing. I'm not very good and finding these, as it's still something I'm working on myself, but there are some obvious cases. Dialog – in particular internal monologue for Luna – is a decent alternative to just telling the readers how a character is feeling through the narration. Aside from that, there should always be some kind of tick, some kind of minor motion, or twitch, some tone to the character's voice, or even just their choice in words, that should indicate the character's mood and intentions. Body language can be exponentially more descriptive than narration, because it lets the reader empathize. Here's a line of your tell, and my attempt to translate it into a show:

>The more [Luna] thought about that, the more she thought that she should be uneasy as well - but she wasn't
Luna cast her gaze about her unusual surroundings, tilting her head thoughtfully. But there wasn't any need for concern, was there? After all, she was in the company of a friend.

I don't mean nor want to put words in your metaphorical mouth, but I thought an example would be prudent. I feel that I've said the same thing you've said – with a few more words, mind you – but it'll be more powerful with the reader for not spoon-feeding them what they should be feeling here.

Pick up a light prescription of PRONOUNS© to clear up those few L.U.S. breakouts, but be careful how and where you apply them. Other than that, your style is good, if a little bit dry. Spice it up a bit with some varied vocabulary and sentence structures, and rely more on the characters' expressing themselves through their actions. Smooth up Zecora's meter a bit by reading her lines aloud, and watching some episodes with her. You can never watch too much pony.
Score – 7/10

Finally, in the area of story progression and characterization:

We've talked about almost everything that'll be covered here, but I want to point it out here for the review. To begin with, what is with Luna's frequent and extremely rapid mood swings? From the beginning of the story, she begins raging mad enough to knock out a squadron of Celestia's day guard for their incompetence, tearing through the Everfree with near gleeful abandon, to nearly running Zecora and her entire hut down before realizing she's gone bat-shit crazy. As a result, she immediately backs down, even after the two share a discovery that Zecora was more-than-a-little responsible for Luna's difficulties during the previous Nightmare Night Festivals. From raging badass to simpering foal in record time, were my words in the comments, I believe. The swings continue after that, as well. After her first solo victory, she becomes nearly manic. We see some genuine, understandable frustration in Luna when she enters the Old Castle and snuffs out the story's first MacGuffin. Her temperament becomes more believably unbalanced the further into the story we get, until she finally has an honest to goodness breakdown at the end of the third chapter. For good reason. But Luna's character and motivations seem somewhat sporadic up until this point.

Zecora's motivations are no less vague. In fact, it doesn't seem she even has any other than morbid curiosity. Like a MacGuffin, there's nothing wrong with a character following their curiosity. But like a MacGuffin, a deeper meaning often needs to develop to keep the character in the story. Particularly after the events of the lake.

Between the two of them, Zecora and Luna's relationship builds and fosters extremely quickly, as well. In spite of their initial animosity (of which both characters seem to dance around) toward one another, the two seem to trust one another implicitly after a shared drink and an apology. So much so, that Luna trusts Zecora with one of her deepest, oldest secrets, and Zecora is willing to follow Luna into the jaws of death. That kind of trust isn't instantaneous. It took the elements of harmony, the very embodiment of friendship, twenty-four hours for them to even recognize they were all friends. Let alone be willing to put their livelihood or the lives on the lines for one another.

The characters aside, there were a couple instances of physical and literary inconsistencies. Firstly, Luna is a nocturnal creature, yet she needs to illuminate her path through the Everfree. Speaking of being nighttime, Luna is somehow able to see her reflection in Zecora's jewelry in the dead of night, in the middle of the forest, with glowing, green lights behind Zecora, and flightlights coming out of Luna's own eyes. There's a MacGuffin of ley lines that comes out of nowhere, a couple uses of ambiguous 'horse languages' that aren't Equestrian, the fact that Luna can FLY and she's traipsing around the Everfree on foot, an omitted conversation about Zecora's mask that never gets addressed, and an exciting opportunity for a fight that gets completely brushed aside by Luna's god-tier status that left me extremely disappointed. Luna nukes the lake from orbit, despite or in spite of the fact that – so far – she seems to want to keep a low profile, and likely against the wishes of Zecora. There are more, but like I've said, we've talked about most of them, and there's nothing here I haven't tagged in the document.

There are a few plot concerns to address, namely in regards to Luna's and especially Zecora's motivations. They need to be made aware to the reader, or at the very least hinted at, if not to the denizens of the story. Which they are, toward the middle and end of chapter three. Luna's more than Zecora's. The MacGuffin hunt is over, and we seem to have a honest plot at this point. Zecora seems a touch impulsive for her canon character, and Luna seems as though she doesn't even know what to do with herself most the time. If it's on purpose, it needs to be played smoother.
Score – 6/10

Final Score – 19/30
I like the premise, but the story seems distracted with where it's going, and is flagging under its own rapid pace to try and get somewhere. Also, you're going to need that [dark] tag, in my opinion, with three fairly grizzly scenes within two and a half chapters.
>> No. 119052
I can't help but feel somewhat responsible for this... tempted to see what I've spawned from an otherwise excellent Rainbow-Pie fic.

Also, NEVER delete or destroy anything. The moment you do, you'll immediately regret it.
>> No. 119062
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I create a Google Doc with comments for the majority of my review:

I don't think I've ever written so much in a doc. I did my best to explain my reasoning behind every suggestion/correction to help you learn from it.

Now, on to the review, yes?

While reading your post, the pre-reader comment that concerned me the most was this one:
>The pacing is also a tad glacial; to be perfectly blunt, I'm unconvinced most of our blog readers would give this a chance beyond the first few paragraphs, due to how many stories we see about Luna being in a similar situation.
When all you've got is some inconsistencies and grammar errors, it's easy enough to fix. However, when your pacing is off, things start to get tricky. I'm going to be blunt: this fic needs some work at the foundation to get to a point where EqD will accept it. But I will emphasize that it is not a wash. You can go somewhere with this.

—I'll start off with the first thing I noticed: the Lavender Unicorn Syndrome. That's something the pre-reader's mentioned—it's when you refer to a character as "the [adjective] filly/pony/etc." You had plenty of that, but I was pleased to notice it died out considerably as the chapter went on to the point where it was almost non-existent. I commented on each occurrence I caught in the doc.

—Second thing that stuck out was your usage of commas. I saw some comma splices near the beginning, but as the chapter rolled on you were just overusing them. Lots of commas before "and"s that were unnecessary. I urge you, when you're reviewing and editing, to not just remove the commas I noted, but try to decide if you could simply end the sentence there. In most cases, you could. Also, the comma is not the be-all-end-all in mid-sentence punctuation. Don't forget about your colons and, to a lesser extent, your semicolons. Use Ezn's Guide ( https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xemG7BLk2rvAmQCREIaj5wX2ubvmVt7WziEvh7xXV9g/edit ) for easy reference on punctuation rules [and other things! That guide is awesome].

—There were a lot of misused pronouns. Make sure you realize who, exactly, a pronoun refers to. It's always the last pony mentioned. I tried to note each one, but I may have missed some. Note: "Luna's hair" isn't a pony, it's hair. So a pronoun after that wouldn't necessarily refer to Luna just because her name was the last one mentioned. Ex: "White ate the apple, watching Luna's hair flow as she enjoyed the treat." That 'she' refers to White.

—You've got a slice of life fic here, which means you're relying more on a immersive world than an active plotline to keep reader's interest. They need to really feel like they're in your world so it's easier to get into your character's heads and live alongside them. However, you do very little scene setting, and what you do have is limited to some visual descriptions. Everyone has 5 senses. Use all of them! Generally, smell and touch are the two most neglected.

Alright, now we're getting to the heavy stuff, the things that are really crippling your story for me.

—Sentence structure. You are completely reliant on using statement qualifiers (said/answered/replied/joked/etc.) to write. Almost every statement happened like this:
"I believe that it was just punishment for this... atrocity!" replied Luna, pointing to her disassembled room. "What were you doing in here?!"
Let me break it down for you a little more:
>"This is spoken,"
[said character,]
doing an action.
Almost every time a character speaks, you do that. Generally, it's great! It keeps dialogue from being bland and is an efficient way to include action in a scene. But you're doing it way too much. I went and found a chapter from a well-written story for you to do some research and look at some alternate ways of writing: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/19198/7/Background-Pony/VII---Bridge . Even in the first scene with Lyra and Twilight, you can see the diversity of sentence structure. My suggestion is for you to go back and remove roughly half (more if you'd like) of these occurrences and rephrase. You need to challenge yourself more. You won't improve as a writer if you only try what you're comfortable with.

—Plot holes/inconsistencies. There was a constant barrage on my suspension of disbelief throughout your story. Lots of little things that just didn't make sense.
>The princess almost started to question whether she had died and gone to heaven.
Are ponies familiar with heaven?

>The white filly thought over her parent's offer carefully, trying as hard as she could to see the pros and cons of what they were saying.
Very advanced critical thinking from a little filly.

>Luna paced the floor of her bedchambers, sweating worse than a marathon runner and biting her lower lip so hard that she was starting to draw blood.
Luna, the centuries-old (at least!) princess of Equestria, is up in a tiff over having a friend visit. She would not lose composure to this extent so easily.

>she tugged and shifted her best Sunday dress around
Ponies are not aware of the human practice of respecting Sunday as far as I know.

In addition, White is bordering on a Mary-Sue. There are more serious transgressions, everything is noted in the doc.

—Complete lack of conflict. I think you introduce conflict in 4 places, 3 of which you immediately solve it. If you want to be a writer, Portal Jumper, you are going to need to start being cruel to your characters. Now, as a Slice-Of-Life fic, you don't need to be near as cruel, but there still needs to be real conflict. Instead of having White soothe all of Luna's problems in the first scene, why not simply have her give Luna pause? Make White cause a change, a shift, in Luna's outlook, and have that change slowly eat Luna up to the point that she feels she must talk with White again. You need to be alluding to the solution while the problem is in full swing, not vice versa.
Same goes for the banquet and White's parents. Why didn't you have money become an issue there? Nothing definitive needed to happen, but it could have raised tensions and engaged the reader more.
I did make one comment near the end of the chapter on a sentence that got me really excited about where you're taking the story... but it only works if you take the path of conflict.
Last thing I will say on this point: the only conflict White is having is that other ponies call her tendencies "weird". Well, the only tendency you stated she has is that she enjoys the night sky... and I don't see how that's weird. You need to introduce real objects of internal conflict for White, she's too Mary Sue-ish.

That's the review! I do hope you continue to write! I know all of this can be quite daunting and you've got a lot of work ahead of you, but don't let that get you down. Push through it, you'll come out a better writer in the end.

*Please, once you've made your edits, ask for another review on the Training Grounds before you send it off to EqD. It's in your best interest for someone to take a look after such drastic changes like I'm suggesting.*
>> No. 119063
You must be new here. People blow up their stuff all the time.
>> No. 119065
Imma karma-claim this one. The others in the queue are one with a reviewer request and two crossovers that I don't know.

So, no, I'm not claiming something just because it's the shortest one.


You had a reviewer request too, but you said it wasn't mandatory and screw you I want a karma claim.

Also, having multiple people is good--the second person will see different things. It's a huge difference trust me.

Ask your requested reviewer as well if you want to.
>> No. 119071
Working title.

Name: Tactical!Rainboom

Email: [email protected]

Tags: Mild Violence and Frequent Ponies. The actual tags are stupid... I guess this is Adventure? I saw someone make an argument once that all tags that don't refer to actual genres or literary thingies should be dropped.

Synopsis: Twilight Sparkle plays the part of Starswirl the Bearded in a play. I just wrote that just now; I'll try for a synopsis later. Wow, never realized I hadn't done this.

Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1B4bH44SvQiyOZWbMwKw1l7H8tLvGeMgzSowD556_C8o/edit
>> No. 119074

I'll give this one a whirl. Sounds like fun
>> No. 119081

So, now that Minjask (or Bleeding Rain) has decided to take a break from writing reviews, I guess I should re-write my review-request? Since I specifically asked him to review my story, I feel like that might deter potential reviewers.

In other words, I'm super impatient, and will come up with any excuse I can think of to remind people that my story exists!
>> No. 119084
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Even this post by itself would be a good review, but the comments in the documents elevate it to excellence. Seriously one of the best editing experiences I've had. You didn't just find a bunch of flaws (although that is always useful too). You also coaxed new, better directions for the story to take out of my brain.

For example, going back over chapter three, I am also incredibly let down by it myself, especially in regards to the ending. Perfect opportunity for an epic fight, which I made trivial. Complete neglect of the whole "stealth" thing. Perfect opportunity for a deeper exploration of Luna's motivations (with possible flashback), which I completely ignored. Looking back on it, I think I was just getting fatigued and wanted to wrap the chapter up so I could get to the next one. I intend to fix it ASAP now, and I probably wouldn't have thought to for a long while without your input.

Thank you so much for the time and attention you put into doing this. If there's a greater form of gratitude than undying, it is yours.
>> No. 119085
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Jeez! WTF!

With all these new I think people me being one of them, though I have already done 6 reviews, and AzuNyan doing work like a boss, all the fresh and tasty junk is being snatched up!

Save something for me will ya?


Yo, you mind posting Chapter 1 as well. I think if someone is going to pick it up there gonna wanna see chapter 1 first so they know what's going on.
>> No. 119086
There are currently six new individuals, but considering the old guard is all but gone (Pascoite and...) I think most people are happy for it.
>> No. 119087
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Minjask does the reviews, dear, I just right the stories. Although we are—in fact—one and the same, the man behind the curtain likes to think of us as two separate ponies.

Tarry not, there are always new stories coming in, and what with Minjask on a break, I've had time to write. Click the watch thread button and install ponychan notifier, you'll get updates so you can be first to the pickings.
>> No. 119089
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Hehe, sorry. I have a strange need to claim all the shipping stories. Probably out of fear that there won't be a new one for awhile. I've considered making a shipping-only review thread.

But there are a few unclaimed stories still in the queue. I know they're long, but they've also been waiting awhile. This would be a chance to end their wait.
>> No. 119092
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>But there are a few unclaimed stories still in the queue. I know they're long, but they've also been waiting awhile. This would be a chance to end their wait.

I don't wanna review those ones! I want something fresh and those are all stale!
>> No. 119093
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>> No. 119094
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Go on ahead. I would have claimed yours a while ago, actually, if not for the fact that I have a helluva ton of work to do and because you asked for Minjask. Might as well give you a signal boost as well, because you've got charity - to anyone interested but worried, Minty's had a look at it already, and I don't remember the review being something like "kill it with fire", so it should be a good read.
>> No. 119095
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Old Dash avatarfriend v. new Dash avatarfriend.
Round 1.
>> No. 119115

Here's chapter one, then: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1KTs5jrbyrFtNMIF78FIoNWH0oZH2ar2i5Fpb6AjcG7M/edit


Thanks for picking this up! I only need a review of chapter two.
>> No. 119123
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Ahhh... >_> It pains me to say it, but that wasn't a claim, because I still have a helluva ton of stuff to do. But when the dust settles on my end, and if it still hasn't been claimed, I'll take it on.
>> No. 119125

Noted. Thanks anyway.
>> No. 119128
File 134738473599.png - (190.63KB , 500x647 , 132641576229.png )
Author: NumberNine99
Posted: 8/29

Blarg! Ponychan ate my first post.
I'll take care of this, though not immediately. I'll need some down time after Bronetheus's fic -- which I plan to continue into the later chapters because it's an interesting concept and he's just generally a cool guy -- but I do make a promise to give it my time an attention.
>> No. 119131
Claiming this: >>118617
tags: Adventure
Synopsis: Rarity needs a special kind of lace for her new country-western themed dress for Sapphire Shores, one that you may only use if you have personal permission from its designer, who live in a town called "Stitchtown," a frontier town populated by fashion designers. In order to get permission, she has to go trough a series of trials that tests her physical abilities as well as her creativity.
Comments: "I feel that some characters interactions could be more, well, vivid. Especially the kiss at the ending." "You also confuse were with where sometimes (and, in some words that have an "o" followed by a "g", you usually insert an "u" between them: monologue/monolougue; dialog/dialougue)." (I've tried to self-edit the typos since then, but there may still be some I missed.)
>> No. 119140

Thanks! Looking forward to it.
>> No. 119143
Thank you so much for your time spent reviewing my story. I honestly had no idea that there were so many little things that could detract from the story, but I guess that's what I get for this only being my second story. Reading through your review, as well as your notes, it became abundantly clear that I have a lot of work to do.

My one issue is with the supposed "lack of conflict". I'm planning on this being a three part story, and I wanted the first part to set up the situation more than introduce the major conflict. The second part is where things will get more interesting as far as conflict is concerned, but I really wanted to set the scene and show how the relationship between Luna and Eclipse grows.

Again, thank you for reading my story, and I will ask for you when I put it back up for reviewing.
>> No. 119146
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But isn't it wonderful that we're all just so eager to help each other out? It's the sign of a healthy community. Besides, I like the idea of the queue being something akin to a game of musical chairs.
>> No. 119149
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There's a reason I took stories from the top of the queue. because everypony does the same thing you do. They take the short stories from the bottom of the queue, leaving everypony else sitting for a month. But some of those longer stories are actually quite good. I never would have found Black Equinox if I hadn't. I would advise you to pick up one of the top three stories in the queue--even if it's long--and just give it a shot. I'm sure the author will thank you.
Also, seriously, get ponychan notifier. http://www.mithent.com/notifier/ It's fucking magic.
>> No. 119158
Tag: [Dark]

Synopsis: When a noisy flock of crows decides to roost on Twilight Sparkle's library tree, keeping her awake all night and refusing to leave, she eventually resorts to drastic measures to run them out of town. Unfortunately, Twilight realizes too late the terrible truth about crows. They never forgive or forget. And they have allies.

Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/story/47367/1/Twilight-vs.-The-Birds/Twilight-vs.-The-Birds

Comments: An Equestria Daily pre-reader had this to say about my story: “I didn't find this fic to be particularly interesting, and the plot was frankly frustrating. Twilight at least tried to use her magic against the parasprites, and I found myself wondering why she wasn't using her magic (even in a non-harmful way) against the crows as soon as they showed themselves to be hostile. This objection is somewhat subjective, but I suspect that many would agree with me.”

I wonder how true that is. The pre-reader’s first statement particularly discouraged me because I’ve read a lot of books on writing fiction and I assumed that I had integrated all the rules and techniques for a compelling plot that those books teach into this story. Namely: Clear character motivation, a strong goal vital to the character's well-being (at least in character's own mind). Character faces obstacles to the goal, experiences struggle/conflict with opposing force, suffers setback. Repeat. Each new setback to the character worse than the last. Use of strong character emotion via internal monologue. I attempted to follow this general principle: "If you make the character care, the reader will care."
According to at least one person on EQD, I was unsuccessful. What went wrong? Was the plot/pacing too slow? Was the story goal not compelling enough? How can I turn my story into a “particularly interesting” fic? If anyone once can answer these questions for me, I will be greatly in your debt. Please be as in-depth as possible.
>> No. 119165
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This reply makes me happy. I give you a mountain of work and you just took it in stride.

>I wanted the first part to set up the situation more than introduce the major conflict
Fair enough. That's kind of the impression I got from the chapter. However, you've got to give the reader some reason to stick with you. Make sure you're always touching on sources of tension and otherwise engaging the reader, otherwise they will get bogged down with the exposition. This is your first chapter, too! This is where everyone will decide whether to continue reading or not.

>I will ask for you when I put it back up for reviewing.
I thank you for the vote of confidence, but I'm afraid I'm not the most active reviewer here. I only stop by when I have the time to review something, so if you were to request me you may end up waiting a little while. Also, there are plenty of other talented reviewers here that may find something I missed. It may be in your best interest to find someone else to review next time.

>> No. 119167
Trust me, I will accept all the critiques and notes in the world if it will help me be the best I can be. You rock!
>> No. 119171

This had some good ideas. If it were me, I'd push the concept to the limit and be unapologetically ridiculous.
>> No. 119173
File 134740133550.png - (33.25KB , 200x200 , large smile.png )

See Pic.


Heh, I'd love to go hoof-to-hoof with Mr. Satellite!


Oh, I'll claim this. Looks like its gonna be a pain in the flank though.


>because everypony does the same thing you do. They take the short stories from the bottom of the queue, leaving everypony else sitting for a month.

Jeez, bro. Was there a hint of malice in that statement? You always make me feel like a jerk.
>> No. 119176
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What? Somepony claimed my story? When in the hell did that happen? ...Um, not that I'm complaining, mind you. Thanks for your help, Tactical.

>push the concept to the limit and be unapologetically ridiculous
That's always been the plan!
>> No. 119177
Please submit your story to our queue using the form linked at the top of the thread, under "For Writers."
>> No. 119178

Oh: Feel free to reply to the comments. I should be able to talk about stuff.
>> No. 119183
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>Heh, I'd love to go hoof-to-hoof with Mr. Satellite!
Heh. Fair enough. I'll go ahead an' review your review then.
>> No. 119186
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I'm not sure what you're looking at but we've stolen enough of the thread as is. Thanks for the notice, and I'll be careful in the future, as well as leave this as an apology:

To Shoeblock,
I apologize if I made you feel bad with my post up there. I was trying to help at first, but I may have stepped out of line. I need to remember that we are only volunteers. Everypony here sacrifices part of their time to be here, and that shouldn't be taken for granted. I will do my best to be more insightful and less accusative in the future, and wish you luck with your reviewing endeavors.
>> No. 119189
I have to consume a short novel before it's due back at the library a few days from now, then I'll catch myself up on your chapter one, before getting started on chapter two's review. Lots of reading, but nothing I haven't done before. Just need to stay away from the youtubes. I wanted to ask, though. Since I'm a different reviewer, did you want to me to take a shot at chapter one, as well?

ah, the magic of applications
>> No. 119193

I'm going to try my hand at reviewing this. It sounds like an interesting concept, and an intriguing challenge. If nothing else, it'll be one more critique of your work to draw from.

Expect the review no later than Sunday.
>> No. 119209
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If I’m not mistaken there was a review recently that was requesting some feedback. >>119050 Ah, there it is. And it’s the story I dropped, no less. Okay, morning_angles, let’s see what you’ve got here.

Evaluation of the story
You showed a clear understanding of the story, and of several plot elements. You provided detailed descriptions of what could be improved and what should have been done differently. 18/20

I noticed one misspelling, which is pretty much inevitable around here since posts aren’t really editable.9/10

Errors that were pointed out were well explained. Praise was given where due. You provided a few pointers as well.8/10

This review was quite lengthy, but there’s a lot to say about a story sometimes. That said, the formatting for this review was pretty clean. It’s readable, it’s informative, and it’s not too hard to find a particular point or category4/5

You have a clear reviewing voice. That is to say, there is a certain personality in your wording and example choices that separates you as an individual. And it’s engaging enough that the author won’t likely get lost in the length of it.5/5

Overall rating: 44/50
Nice job. The author will definitely be able to improve their story with this.
>> No. 119212
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Not a home run -- wasn't expecting one -- but wow I'm proud of that improvement. This made my night. Especially considering you reviewed my previous review, as well. Just need to keep improving the quality for the next one.
>> No. 119218
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Heh, I finally got off my lazy butt and wrote something. Hopefully it won't disgust the reviewer who inflicts it upon themselves.

Title: Hunt and Toll

Tags: [Sad]

Description: Thrown into the afterlife and designated as a guardian of death, one pony is forced to take on a task he never asked for. In this lonely existence, accompanied only by his teacher, death seems to dominate the world—but will this pony let it define him?
Perhaps, if he looks close enough, it isn't all bad...
If you have any suggestions on this synopsis, I am open to them! I don't think it's all that good.

Link (includes both Chapter 1 and 2): https://docs.google.com/document/d/1q6nYFmNenxPmoKpq85dvMMPrYF28ALWJjCSF6PfAV6E/edit?pli=1

Words: 8000 exactly! How did I manage that?

Chapters to review: 1 and 2 (a third is planned)

Comments: Main concern is plot holes, inconsistencies or repetition of sentence structure. I did my best to avoid those, but they have their ways of showing up. Also concerned about my protagonist; I'm notoriously bad at creating a protagonist the reader enjoys following. Last thing: this is my first foray into first-person perspective. I don't know the pitfalls of it, so keep your eye out.
>> No. 119226
What with the nonexistent queue and shit I suppose I can throw my other thing in here too.

Fair warning--this is waiting on a review from a certain Decepticon as well. The comments left in the doc aren't his, though; they've been left open because they're opinions from a reader. I would love it if the reviewer would weigh in on those notes.

Title: The Birth of Ardor (working title. See, it's like the Birth of Venus because I'm so damn clever)

Tags: [Sad except not really I HATE THE TAG SYSTEM]

Description: An urgent letter reaches the castle, bearing news that a very special filly was born in humble East Hayshire. The Sisters immediately make preparations for a royal outing to welcome an infant Goddess to the world.

This is a story about Love.


Words: About 4000.
>> No. 119227

I'm real sorry, I would completely be willing to tackle the two long ones in the queue that have been waiting for so long, but they're both crossovers that I don't know. I mean, I know what Persona IS, and I know what a Persona is and what it does sorta, but your audience will know Persona much better than I do so I'm not a good judge.
>> No. 119229
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Aw, you should give it a go! Part of a good crossover is how accessable it is, and as an outsider you'd be prefect to gauge that.
>> No. 119245
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That's where the queue says that Perona: Harmony is, but I can't find it. Whatever, doesn't matter. I'll go ahead and claim this one since I have an incredibly limited knowledge of Persona I played most of P3 and I play a lot of Persona 4 Arena... Akihiko FTW and I'm also gonna dump a relatively long story into TTG here in a bit. It's not going to be 29K but I'll claim this anyways.

Due to the length Sorakun555 might have to wait awhile for the review, but I'll do my best.
>> No. 119248
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I should have something by the end of the weekend.

Let's do this.
>> No. 119268

I'm looking forward to the upcoming review. Hope you enjoy the story as you look through it!
>> No. 119270
Title: The Zeppo
Tags: Comedy, Crossover (In that The Doctor is a minor character and it's based off a Buffy episode plot), Adventure
Description: This is a sequel to A Day in the Limelight.

It's been a couple months since the Monkey Invasion, and Ponyville has settled down to...normal? During that time The Other Mane 6 have been busy. Now taking a well-deserved break, they try and relax. Luckily, these shadowy sentinels are around when the attack from horrible mo-wait no. The Bearers are taking care of that. Well, what about these strange statues tha-nope. The Doctor and companions are here for that one. Can these heroes just take a break and let other ponies handle it?

Link: http://www.fimfiction.net/chapter/156519
(The password is Indeed)
>> No. 119279
Didn't hear back from you on this, NumberNine99, so I'm going to assume that you don't want review work on the first chapter and I will only read it for reference. As such, I'm beginning work on that right now. Expect a review for chapter two before too much longer.
>> No. 119285
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I'd very much appreciate it if someone can take the time to review this. It's a one-shot.

Title- Mi Amore

Tags- [Sad]

Synopsis- My wedding. My marriage. My love. It was all a lie. I can't hide my true feelings any longer.

Link- https://docs.google.com/document/d/16GH0lAMPwSXvMl8yblxK-CVu2-jLMtBOw1EnrTH7EcI/edit

Word Count- 3151

Comments: Please take not of any grammar/punctuation errors. I'd also like your thoughts and insights on what you think happened in the story. The first read through probably won't make a lot of sense. Everything is true but nothing is.
>> No. 119286
I feel as though I won't be of much help with this review. There was so little wrong that I was able to find, but here's what I've got.

In the area of technical merit:

Your grammar is near flawless from my perspective. I'm sure someone more experienced could find something more than I could, but I was at a loss. There were a few instances of what I assumed were typographical errors, considering your otherwise commanding expertise of the subject. A single issue of tensing your word processor wouldn't have caught is present, as well as a few misplaced punctuation marks. I spent a good deal of time reading over certain paragraphs, trying to comb the work for anything I could knock you with. But I couldn't find any run-ons, or pronoun issues, or anything. I'm thoroughly impressed.

This is the level of technical merit I aspire for in my own work. There's very little wrong with this chapter grammatically, only a few minor problems that presented themselves as isolated incidents. A little more polish and this would be perfect.
Score – 9/10

In the area of stylistic performance:

You have some slight issue with word repetition. There were three or four areas where successive paragraphs began with the same word, though rarely more than once. When that happens, it gives me the sensation that the story isn't really moving forward. As though the narrative had to take a step back and reiterate itself. A simple rehash of introductions in some paragraphs will clear this up very easily.

There were also one or two instances of an explanatory break in dialogue that I didn't feel was expressly necessary. As this is the stylistic judgment, I don't want you to think there's something mechanically wrong with this parts. But they read like speed bumps in an otherwise very well paced story.
>“I mean no disrespect to her majesty, of course, but honestly.” Blueblood downed the rest of his tea, then swiftly levitated the pot over to the table and refilled his cup. “I tried to get some sleep on the way over,” he said. “Of course, the ride was simply tempestuous. I barely got in two hours before I arrived!”
That little “he said” in there just feels redundant and unnecessary. Blueblood is already clearly established as the speaker in this paragraph, so breaking his dialogue to remind us he's speaking feels slightly jarring.

Tangentially, you use the word “said” a lot in your explanatory breaks in dialogue. An awful lot. I tend to get knocked for dialogue qualifiers that aren't the word “said”, but you're on the other end of the spectrum. There are very few qualifiers other than “said”. Can no one clarify, or explain, or agree to something? Or acquiesces, or interject, or reply? The constant use of “said” makes the story's considerable dialogue feel somewhat dry and mechanical, everyone speaking in the same mood and tone. This isn't to say that you need to go out and replace every single instance of “said” with some other qualifier. Just, vary it a little from time to time.

As another isolated incident, there is a moment of minor clarity concern.
>“The one that Fluttershy gave belly-rubs and you lured back to Tartarus with a rubber ball?” Twilight shot Pinkie Pie a deadly glare. “What! I’m just trying to help you jog her memory.”
This sentence – the narrative between the two instances of dialogue – doesn't lend any explicit context as to who exactly is speaking in this paragraph. It alludes, heavily, but there's still an element of ambiguity here.

Consider some variation in your vocabulary for commonly used words, and remember to keep sentence introductions varied, as well. There was an instance it was done for dramatic effect, though. Leave that alone. Other than that, just tighten a few things in general.
Score – 8/10

In the area of story progression and characterization:

Once again, very little for me to say. The story moved along at a rather quicker pace than I prefer, but that's a personal preference that I can't deduct points for. There was an instance with Rarity's vocabulary that stood out as odd to me, but just the one time. Looking over your resolved comments, it's obvious you've given this chapter a lot of love an attention. It paces well, there weren't any major or even minor plot holes I could detect, and everyone seemed in very excellent character (aside from Rarity's one slip). Things are explained as they needed to be explained, and the perspective shift constantly gave the story a fresh feel.

I got nothing. This is a really well done story so far.
Score – 10/10

Final Score – 27/30
This is really, really good, and while it's a little faster in the plot department than I tend to like, I'm eager to see what happens next. Keep at it.
>> No. 119294
I've actually decided that I'm going to revoke Shards of Hope and make some major changes to it. You can go ahead and remove it from the queue here.

Thanks to anyone that took the time to look at it though!
>> No. 119296
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This review makes me happy. Thank you.

I'll be sure to fix everything you brought up, and I'll try my hardest not to make those mistakes in the future. Still, I have two questions for you:

When you say that Rarity felt out of character, was her vocabulary the only thing that put you off? Or were her actions out of character as well?

Also, I was wondering if you could clarify your complaint about the speed of the plot. I know it's just personal preference, but it would still be nice to know how I can avoid something like that in the future.

Thanks again for the review; I appreciate it.
>> No. 119306
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It was just her word choice in that one instance that rankled me. Everyone else felt genuine.

As for the rapid pace, it just felt to me that the story "assembled the team" as it were, awfully quick. The urgency for why this needs to happen is made quite apparent, however, and you preform it very skillfully. The fact that nearly all of the guides were in Ponyville at nearly the same time was addressed and explained. If Gilda had been there, as well, I would have called shenanigans, though. But you handled it extremely well. I'm just the kind of reader who enjoys a more drawn out, scenic route to his destination. A chapter a piece for each of the guides -- tracking them town, locating them, convincing them, etc. -- would have been my preference, but not every story needs to be a seven-hundred page epic. It's just my preference. Like I said, though. I won't knock points for my own personal bias.
>> No. 119311

That makes a lot of sense, actually: one chapter for each guide. It would probably be a little more suspenseful and interesting, at least. Still, this story's probably going to wind up being 700 pages long anyway.

Again, thanks for the review.
>> No. <