I hear stories in my head | SparkaTale

Sparkatale


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I hear stories in my head



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  • Joined 11/17/13
  • Last login 02/06/15
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I hear stories in my head's Bio

My age and gender? Take a guess! 

I write for fun. And because there are these stories floating around in my head that I just have to get out of my system. I write the stories that I'd like to read, nothing more ambitious than that. 

Want to know more about my writing? 

a) I like unconventional plots - my stories hardly ever take a straightforward direction. Even the simple plots get twisted because I don't cover the events in chronological order.

b) I don't get very explicit, but I do address themes that are quite dark sometimes. So chapters that I think are not suitable for those below 18 are clearly marked. I'm not out to shock anyone here.

c) I try to make my characters as un-generic as I can, and also to make them as different from each other as possible. Generally, I tend to go for unconventional gender roles as well.

d) It isn't all sunshine and rainbows in my stories - people get hurt, even die. Life's like that. We just have to deal with it.

e) I often work at getting a particular 'feel' in my romances - kind of a bittersweet goosepimply ache that makes one want to cheer the lovers on against the odds. Because my characters never have it easy when it comes to the matters of the heart, whatever gender they are. 

Thank you for reading my stories, and I hope you are entertained!

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3 1 2 1150
Together

3 0 14 1641
All of Him
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I hear stories in my head has not written any poems yet.
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Comments
  • Gifted

    I guess I wasn't paying attention to this point on the Other Worlds - if you want it to be a significant detail then you'd need to make it stand out more, I think. Like, does everyone know of these worlds, or just the Gifted? Is it the source of the Gifts, etc...

    I understand your logic behind the ambush-after-talking, but they could equally have estimated her deadliness by trying to talk to her as she wandered through the village, or simply throwing something at her to see how she reacted. Or just spiked her sandwiches with some tasteless, odorless sleeping drug - they have their wonder doctor at hand to mix up a suitable concoction, no? Anyway, the way you wrote it was good too, but the reasoning was not obvious until you explained it. Could you make it clearer somehow, maybe by having Michelle discuss it with somebody beforehand?

    Commented on: December 31, 2013

  • Quest for a Home

    The description of the cirque and its people is great. Just detailed enough to pique but not too over the top. You manage to insert references to Devon's past experiences with some of the people, and that helps to make the description even more vivid. There is obviously a triangle building up with Alex, Liz and Devon - the only thing I'd say about it at the moment is: it happened very fast! Particularly with Devon. Let's see how it goes then.

    I have one minor nitpicky point to make about Jackal and Cheshire. If they're wearing masks, then how is it that Liz is able to see their expressions in such detail? Masks are usually used to disguise how a person really feels by obscuring their true expression, so I'm not sure what is the purpose of them not revealing their true faces to Liz.

     

    Commented on: December 31, 2013

  • Quest for a Home

    The interaction between Devon and Elizabeth is quite natural, but it seems to me more like the kind of relationship that has been built up for some time, rather than an exchange between strangers who literally just met.And then all of a sudden they're exchanging life stories, and even secrets on Elizabeth's part. It's a bit hard to take, frankly.

    Elizabeth is very self-aware - of her history with males, and that she is for the first time experiencing flirting with a real live guy. She seems rather naive in other ways, though. What 19 year old girl thinks it's alright, or safe, to attach herself to an unknown young man out there in the lawless middle of nowhere?

     

    Commented on: December 31, 2013

  • Quest for a Home

    Alex in the morning made me laugh - I know some people like that. Poor owls. I'm a lark myself. I thought Elizabeth and Alex are on the run? Their conversation doesn't have a sense of urgency that would come with that. In fact, I find some parts of the dialogue generally too 'modern' in tone as well, like the one about the crazy ex.

    That someone has a dark past but isn't dark by nature - wow, that's quite a lot to be able to tell from a laugh! I wonder if Devon is what he seems to be - a runner-away like them, or a spy sent to get them back?

    There are some typos - you might want to edit the chapter in general.

    Commented on: December 31, 2013

  • Gifted

    The mention of the Other Worlds – is that the first one? I can’t remember reading about it earlier. If it isn’t an important detail, then I don’t think it needs to be included; it could just be assumed that 13 is unlucky in their world too.

    I liked the conversation between Carey and Michelle about if you were Gifted you’d know that. It was quite funny to me. Michelle’s story seems a little different from what you put in your collection of short stories, however. Did her mum tell her a different story then? Not a complaint, just an observation.

    I don’t know why Michelle even bothered to tell her the story, really – she could have waited for her to leave the inn and ambushed her outside with a whole posse of rebels. And then they could have taken their time interrogating the truth out of her. 

    Commented on: December 30, 2013

  • Quest for a Home

    I’m very confused. Why are chp 2 and 3 the same? Is it the website acting up, or did you mistakenly upload something?

    Anyway, I thought of something else. Alex and Elizabeth – are they supposed to be falling for each other? I just wanted to say that if they are, there’s no sign of it so far. But of course, they don’t have to be a couple; that’s just me the romance junkie compulsively turning everything I read into a love story. 

    Good luck with the updating.

    Commented on: December 19, 2013

  • Quest for a Home

    Haha, I don’t like chickens either; I’ve been scared of them ever since I got mobbed as a kid bringing their daily feed into the coop. I liked the bit about Stuart not looking like a Stuart as well – it made me think about whether people can ‘look’ like their names, apart from things like someone huge and tall being called ‘Tiny’ of course.

    What happened to her concern over her sister? She was all about that in the previous chapter, and then now there isn’t a single mention of it. The point is also related to your summary: you ask the question of what makes a family, and if you want to convey that family is the people who care for you, then you need to show how she is gradually letting go of her blood sister to join her new family, not just abandon her own sister completely without any further thought. So I suggest she thinks a lot about her sister at first, and then she compares her to Annabelle and the others, and then she starts thinking less of her and more of them. And probably she should start asking herself mentally, who is my family?

    One small point that you might want to consider is your dialogue – words like ‘will’ and ‘am’ tend to be shortened in actual speech, so it sounds more natural to have ‘I’m/I’ll’ than the full forms, unless it is a very stiff character or a very formal scene. You sometimes do, sometimes don’t, use the short forms, so maybe you want to be more consistent with them?

    Editing:

    • giving them so feed (should ‘so’ be some other word?)
    • a more abandoned area (I suggest ‘isolated’ instead)
    • The horse starts off, falling Alex, (you probably mean ‘following’)
    • I loved adventure: Does that mean she doesn’t love it anymore now?

    Commented on: December 19, 2013

  • All of Him

    Nope, he's still a Zomb. That glowy orb needs to be 'installed' to complete the process. She might do that, she might not. But first we get to see how they started out and what events led up to Allegra being in this situation of being stuck between a rock and  a hard place.

    Commented on: December 17, 2013

  • All of Him

    At this point, she's got the means to restore his memory, but that doesn't mean she will go through with it, because to do so would mean admitting to him what she did, not to mention possibly losing him completely. Which would you rather have? Do the right thing and lose the only person you ever felt any connection to, or hold on to someone who can literally be everything you ever wanted? That is the big question in this story.

    Commented on: December 17, 2013

  • Gifted

    I felt that the part on Carey asking 256 to teach her hand to hand combat was pretty rushed – you could have gotten so much more out of it, IMHO. I mean, with all that grappling and wrestling and very close contact... I’d have used it to include a few tender moments.

    I wonder what happened to 404 that made him so nasty? Or was he always nasty? If something made him that way, presumably the same thing happened to 256, but the effect on him is quite different. Why? I wonder if you’d ever tell us what it is or leave it to our (admittedly, fertile) imaginations.

    The thing that struck me most about this chapter is how it ended – so heart-wrenchingly SAD!!! And on behalf of romance-story addicts everywhere, I do present this appeal to you: please, please, let Carey and 256 end up together. Pretty please with whipped cream and chocolate sprinkles...

    Commented on: December 16, 2013

  • Gifted

    Or it might be the site itself, cause I've been getting notifications for comments supposedly added to comments that I made, only they're for stories that I never commented on. 

    Commented on: December 16, 2013

  • Gifted

    Yes, I do think that's what happened, because I distinctly remember posting a comment on chapter 14 - my broadband connection sucks. It probably swallowed my comment whole. So ok, I'll do a new one, hope I remember what I said!

    Commented on: December 16, 2013

  • Quest for a Home

    You set up the background of the story well with a main character who is not so well rounded yet but getting there. There are a few details that perhaps you’d like to fill in later, like how much exactly they stole and why the penalty for doing so is so high, or even the precise reason why they chose to steal from the king and not just any other rich person. This would help the reader understand the main character better because otherwise it can be argued that she’s just a thief and thieves are not people you’d normally root for.

    The ending paragraph seems rather rushed to me. Perhaps you could talk more about her feelings? I mean, her sister whom she thought dead might not be dead after all...

    Editing:

    • brings me back to reality
    • I peek my head
    • perhaps by a loving wife (cause she doesn’t yet know if he’s married)
    • being led to the gallows

    Commented on: December 16, 2013

  • Run

    Your writing is smooth and easy to navigate, not too flowery. The only part I found a little out of place was the doctor’s description of the woman who’d saved him – it doesn’t sound natural; I don’t think doctors are in the habit of paying so much attention to someone who wasn’t a patient, or at least a male doctor won’t be noticing the brand of the shorts she was wearing.

    The plot is still quite mystifying but you’ve given me enough information that I can deal with it for now – Kim is in trouble, stuck with an apparently mad woman named Ira; it also seems that Kim rescued a guy from killing himself and now he’s kind of obsessed with her. Right, I’ll be waiting to see how all these threads tie together.

    On another point, I understand the need to separate the flashback from the main narration, but I’d just like to share with you a comment that I frequently receive when I do that – too many italics are hard to read. I personally don’t have such an issue with it, but I think you should know that some readers do.

    Commented on: December 16, 2013

  • Gifted

    I really, really liked Marvin’s speech to Janelle. It wasn’t quite the smack in the head that I would like someone to give her, but it expressed my feelings exactly. It’s good for the rebels that she’s finally found her backbone, but I think she’s still too self-centred in her internal dialogue to convince me that she’s turning into a capable leader. Oh well, there’s still time for her to grow, I guess. Yes, I’m biased against Jan but that’s just how it is – you can’t have all your characters likeable to every reader. So I hope you take this positively as evidence that your writing is having a great effect on me!

    What are they going to do to 256? Oh no, I’m so worried for him!

    Editing:

    • everything that’s coming TO me
    • He other Gifted (missing word?)

    Commented on: December 16, 2013

  • All of Him

    Again, you are right in guessing that when Allegra made the decision, it seemed the right thing to do. I don't present events in chronological order, which is probably the source of this Why? question.

    Allegra is socially unskilled because she's a programming genius who doesn't have many friends, whereas Zech is somewhat more 'normal' - at least he was before he got Zombed. Anyway, they do have history together, which will be revealed later.

    Commented on: December 11, 2013

  • All of Him

    I don't think you're slow on the uptake, it's just the way I've presented the story - readers have to work things out for themselves, little by little. Cause I like stories like that, they're like puzzles or whodunits.

    Yes, an aw is one hour, a sec is a second, twelve aws in a daycycle and another twelve in a noctcycle (from nocturnal). The story is set in the not so distant future, so I use these terms based on the reasoning that language changes slowly over time but it wouldn't be completely different. Likewise hetfriend (the opposite is homfriend), biological progenitor (parent), etc

    Commented on: December 11, 2013

  • All of Him

    You're spot on in your understanding of what a Zomb is - a human being with his/her personality suppressed and replaced with programming, that the owner can do anything with. And yes, Allegra has an operating system installed in her brain (almost everyone in this story does), with which she interacts as a voice in her head. She refers it with her own name, allegra, because it is essentially herself. Kind of like Iggy's Voice but much much smarter and without a personality of its own.

    Commented on: December 11, 2013

  • Quinn's Duty

    Whoopsie, I think I attached both comments to the same chapter. Sorry, I'm not very techy. Anyway, the last comment was for chp 1, this one below is for chp 2.

    The remark on the benefits of being popular – I found it funny; way to go, Captain Obvious! I actually like reading the two stories side by side – it’s interesting to see this scene from Quinn’s POV after reading it from Dakota’s. I write from the perspective of a male character sometimes (except nearly all my stories are in the first person), so it’s interesting for me to see how someone else approaches it.

    When I have more information about Quinn, his reaction of getting mad over the year book photo doesn’t seem so arrogant anymore (which was what I felt the first time round). That goes to show how important it is for a character to be fully developed so that the reader can interpret him/her better. Of course I also realise that Quinn’s story will separate from Dakota’s after the next chapter cause he is presumably not going to get captured by slavers, but while it lasts, it’s a fun read!

    Editing:

    • feel arms wrap around me from behind
    • How many times do I have to tell her
    • Brittney whined
    • those were the most miserable
    • Her plan is obvious to me
    • Loren, one of Brittney’s friends

    ... Sorry, there were more but I stopped after this one, cause I wanted to concentrate on the story.

    Commented on: December 10, 2013

  • Quinn's Duty

    The summary at the beginning of the background information is efficient, but it sounds rather impersonal to me. It’d have been nice if you could have presented it as a conversation between Alastar and Quinn, and describe Quinn’s reactions to the information that he’s given. Would it be a ‘duh?’ or a ‘wicked!’? I like Quinn’s warm relationship with his mother – it’s a nice change from the angsty interaction that you get between teenagers and their parents in many stories.

    In your introduction you said that this story can be read together with Tripped. Well, I’m doing that, and I have to tell you that I had an ‘almost spoiler’ moment – the bit in Tripped when Dakota finds out about the prince of Talamh is exactly what the beginning of this chapter is about. It wasn’t a major issue in this instance, but probably you should bear in mind that if you’re running both stories at the same time, you have to be extra careful with the spoilers.

    Editing:

    • why am I up at five (missing ‘I’)
    • a simple white apron. Her blond hair (run-on sentences)

    PS I like Coldplay.

    Commented on: December 10, 2013

  • Side Stories

    This story is certainly more grown-up than Gifted, but I like that, it’s a nice change and it shows your versatility. I love the bittersweet flavour of it – in the dialogue and in the restrained depiction of intimacy. You are right in saying that it contains a spoiler, so I was wondering if perhaps you’d have been better off delaying this story until you’ve finished Gifted. Still, so far I don’t think the spoiler is affecting my reading of the main story in any way, so maybe it’s alright after all.

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Gifted

    The tone of your story gets much darker in this chapter. I’d had 256 pegged as an innocent who’s probably never been kissed, and now you have him hiding deep dark secrets with 440. Delicious.

    I was expecting the self-doubting from Jane, and it was fitting that it was there, but well, it wasn’t easy for me to get through it. Still, now that it’s clear that Jane is trying to rescue her own daughter and not her sister, I can fully understand her motivation. I just wish she’d grow a backbone. If I were Sam, I’d slap some sense into her head rather than babytalk her. Sorry if I sound like a total meanie.

    Editing:

    • won’t cut OFF her circulation
    • one stirred ... they quickly found ... their throat: the pronouns don’t match in this sequence

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Gifted

    Ooh, the two arcs of your story have joined up! Your fight scenes are cool, in spite of what you said about not being good at them – you’re much better than me anyway! There was only one bit of confusion for me – the pursuer after Janelle is supposed to be a woman, right (wonder which Gifted that was?) but at one point, you used the pronoun ‘he’ (He was still after them)

    I’m not really surprised at the outcome of the rebels’ attack, and had you written them a victory, I would have been very disappointed and even annoyed at having to pull off such a huge suspension of disbelief. So I’m glad you kept it realistic, although now we’d probably get a whole cartload of self-doubting angst from Jane, won’t we? Sorry... I just don’t like Jane very much. But I want to assure you that it is through no fault of yours, it is strictly a matter of personal taste.

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Tripped

    Was Eirnin (I like that name, BTW) one of the slaves? If he was, then referring to my remarks for chapter 3, I would have expected him to be one of the ones trying to escape or revolt. Right, so Eric is the boy in the dream sequence – yay, mystery solved. It’s good that you didn’t wait too long to reveal that fact – it’s hard work to have to hold random things in your memory while reading.

    I’m surprised that Dakota turns out to be good at camping (making the fire etc) – I thought she was the typical city teenager who’d freak out at a broken nail and faint if a bug so much as looked at her.

    Well, another cliffhanger ending... :) I look forward to more unexpectedness from you.

    Editing:

    • become used to this miserable means
    • I’m injured I deserve rest, but Eric. This sentence feels incomplete somehow.
    • claiming I can help more
    • the supplies they stole had enough supplies for three : I suggest ‘the supplies they stole were enough for three’
    • Who did you follow here?

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • All of Him

    It's sci-fi - another genre you probably don't usually read, I think? I try to keep the science content manageable, but if you find it overwhelming, then do let me know.

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Tripped

    The action just doesn’t let up! :D I like how you’re full of surprises. At this point, I’d say that I’m enjoying the unpredictable plot of your story, even if I may sound a little demanding in my comments.

    Dakota remains true to her character – I LOLed at how the first thing she noticed about the boy who saved her was that he had ‘average looks’. Her delayed reaction (the bawling) is also accurate – the shock of a traumatic experience usually doesn’t hit straight away.

    Editing:

    • A burst of magic (how does she know it’s magic, incidentally? a burst of white light, maybe?)
    • he is over the six foot mark
    • ... on their prey to lure...

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Tripped

    Right, so at least now we’ve been told the consequences of trying to escape. Dakota shows that she has guts along with her ‘tude. She’s also able to plan forward now that she’s settled down. Funny how she has accepted so quickly that she’s in another world, but that just goes to show how adaptable she is, I guess.

    The last bit in italics was very mysterious and no doubt connected to the story somehow, but I can’t figure it out right now. I don’t recall this ‘Eric’ being introduced anywhere... Who was it that was talking about needing to put effort into understanding a story? :P

    Editing:

    • fed once a day
    • Still too obvious. How else...
    • They were being controlled too

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    The last chapter was supposed to show how Voice (as the last remainder of whom Iggy used to be) is very different and distinct from who Iggy is now (he can't remember his origins). This chapter, I try to show what he is - something dark, born of human nature but not human anymore.

    BTW Iggy is technically neither a she nor a he but an it but I use 'he' to refer to him because he is presently in a male form.

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    Yes, I AM a Dexter fan, but of the books not the TV series. I wasn't trying to do a Dexter here, though. I was just trying to show how Iggy isn't, well, human. 

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    Yeah, humans are much scarier than Iggy. :P This was the chapter I was most worried about cause it had an action scene and I have a phobia of writing those. How'd I do?

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    Oh, that's a UK/US spelling thing. My spell check is set to UK English for some reason. Iggy is of course no longer human, but he was, once... so I dunno, maybe that makes him a lovable monster? 

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Tripped

    Well the story just keeps moving really fast! The Alice in Wonderland vibe continues, and now there’s Willy Wonka note as well with the description of the fantastic fruits.

    One thing I found a little out of place is how the slaves seem to be taking things so calmly – no panic or protest or even despair. If the guards were portrayed as being sadistic beasts who savagely punish any would-be escapees, that would be understandable, but they just sound like bored office workers. It’s just, ‘Here we are, we’re slaves, ho hum. Oh, gather our own food? Sure. No point trying to run away while doing that, right? Cause we’re slaves.’ I mean, I understand that Dakota is playing it safe for now, but what about the others, who presumably know the land better? Are they all that helpless? A little more tension and grittiness would be quite in order here, IMHO.

    Editing:

    • where did you think you’d end up
    • throwing me off balance
    • the size of a volleyball

    I didn’t list some other things, especially punctuation, which BTW can make a difference, eg this sentence: Like I need to be told that I'm not stupid! (one continuous sentence) which is rather different in meaning to Like I need to be told that. I'm not stupid! (two sentences).

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Tripped

    Ah, this is the chapter where we get the intro and prologue from. Actually, I think it’d have been nice if you’d repeated those two passages here. There’s an interesting Alice in Wonderland feel to this chapter, if Alice had ‘tude, that is. Some people don’t like chapters that end on a cliffhanger, but I’m ok with it – the natural thing to do now would be to read on to find out what happens next!

    Generally there are a lot of punctuation marks missing. It’s not a big deal in that it doesn’t make the meaning less clear, but it does show that you’re serious and passionate about your writing if you take the time to edit your work before putting it up.

    Editing:

    • but it is now over
    • call gran’s number
    • Their clothes have an almost medieval look or Their clothes look almost medieval (no ‘a’)
    • I believe it’s cobblestones (one word)

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    I guess you could say ITCOYE isn't a straightforward story, so probably it isn't everyone's cup of tea. The focus is on the psychological state of Iggy, or the supernatural state rather, so that's why it's written the way it is. Heads up: things get more intense after the first chapter, so...

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Tripped

    Dakota sounds like a very excitable and generally emo person. I understand how she could have a crush on Quinn based solely on appearance, the way you describe him (very hot!), but at the moment he doesn’t seem to have a very attractive personality. You have the high school setting down pat, anyway – perhaps from personal experience? It’s good to write about what we know, but writing can be about imagining new and never seen before settings too.

    Editing:

    • Today’s a big day, the king’s table (missing apostrophes)
    • Spelling: leech not leach, principal not principle, where the heroine meets
    • The “ after love potions is not necessary, it isn’t part of the dialogue

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Tripped

    So far, there isn’t very much story to comment on, but I like what I’ve seen so far.

    Editing:

    • I think you mean lush jungle vegetation, not plush
    • Lightning need not be capitalised, I think

    BTW, if you’d rather I left your language alone, let me know, lest I annoy you to death with my nitpickiness on typos etc. :p

    Commented on: December 9, 2013

  • Gifted

    Another apology - the previous comment was meant for chapter 11. Anyway, In the Corner of Your Eye only has 10 chapters, so if you'd like to continue this exchange, would you mind doing All of Him next? I hope so. Really enjoying your story so far!

    Commented on: December 8, 2013

  • Gifted

    Ah, sorry about the repeated lines at the end of my previous comment - I forgot to clear the pop up box of the previous chapter's comments before inserting the comment for this chapter.

    Commented on: December 8, 2013

  • Gifted

    I don’t know if it’s because I just don’t find Janelle very interesting, but I found the beginning part rather repetitious – there wasn’t anything new to be learned about Janelle, although we did get something about James’ background. Apart from that, it’s all been said before – she’s in it for her sister, she’s not very sociable, she doubts her leadership abilities.

    The second part was more interesting to me, but of course it had the advantage of something big happening (Carey’s escape). I also had a sudden thought about her Gift – does only what she’s wearing when she goes invisible become invisible too, or does anything that touches her disappear as well? Cause in some invisibility stories, the person has to take off his/her clothes (like that Jeff Goldblum movie), in others the clothes that he’she is wearing become invisible as well. Just wondering which type Carey is.

    Commented on: December 8, 2013

  • Gifted

    I’m very pleased that there’s a whole chapter devoted to Carey and 256, cause they’re my favourite characters! It was great to learn something about 256’s past as well as how his feelings for Carey are developing. Your characters are rounding out nicely. The incident at the first house also provided more info on why the residents would dislike the Gifted regime, which hasn’t been that clear up to now.

    On another note, perhaps you’d like to start experimenting with ways of describing that are all your own rather than relying on stock expressions like ‘full to the brim’ and ‘stone-cold’. It’s not a pressing matter right now, but if you’re serious about honing your writing skills, I think that’s something worth working on.

    Editing:

    • SHE stood back, and 256...
    • There’RE eight of us now

    The scene in the cold was so sweet! At least Carey has the decency to feel guilty about eventually betraying 256. The way she rationalised her own turning back was kind of cute too.

    There was a lot of information given in this chapter about the Gifted, and it’s good that you did this through Marvin rather than as a ‘lecture’ style passage. Knowing Marvin’s background also helps me relate better to him, although I still can’t decide if he’s actually friend or foe to the rebels. But he definitely isn’t so one-dimensional now. 

     

    Commented on: December 8, 2013

  • Gifted

    The scene in the cold was so sweet! At least Carey has the decency to feel guilty about eventually betraying 256. The way she rationalised her own turning back was kind of cute too.

    There was a lot of information given in this chapter about the Gifted, and it’s good that you did this through Marvin rather than as a ‘lecture’ style passage. Knowing Marvin’s background also helps me relate better to him, although I still can’t decide if he’s actually friend or foe to the rebels. But he definitely isn’t so one-dimensional now. 

     

    Commented on: December 8, 2013

  • Gifted

    Carey’s warming up to 256, they’re gonna fall for each other… *Hums happily* Yeah, yeah, I’m a hopeless romance addict. It’s touching that 256 is more worried that she’d get hurt on the mission, rather than worrying that she’ll try to run away! Maybe this is a test of some kind by the Leader of her loyalty?

    James seems interested in Jan. Is this going to be another couple? *looks hopeful* The background info on Jan helps to develop her character even more. For one thing, it establishes that she’s a homebody not a tomboy, and makes her role as leader all the harder to take up.

    Editing: I think you mean ‘SEWING and knitting’ rather than sowing?

    Commented on: December 7, 2013

  • Gifted

    There were quite a few random bits that I liked – Rosa’s interaction with her brother, Jan’s speech (Public speaking can be a very scary thing to have to do, so I think she did good!), the self-introduction scene in the basement (I found that funny, somehow; they’re off to overthrow a regime and yet there they were politely presenting themselves like at a tea party).

    I said before that I don’t get the two girls, and now in this chapter I finally start to understand Jan a little. She doesn’t believe in herself as much as others believe in her, and I can identify with that because I have been in that same situation before.

    Editing:

    • standing very close to A man (missing article)
    • weren’t exactly what she HAD imagined
    • just a few DAYS’ trip from here (missing apostrophe)
    • the basement WHERE they now stood

    Commented on: December 7, 2013

  • Carriers

    Once I get over the implausibility of the doctor simply letting his precious experiments go into a situation that would certainly get most of them killed (oh well, the guy IS deranged after all), the action moves forward very nicely. Marena’s reaction is realistically depicted – people do act crazy after being shocked.

    At the moment, nine people are quite a handful to keep track of, but no doubt that will become easier as I get to know each of them individually. Some are already starting to stand out, Shay of course, and Marena, and Carson.

    Editing

    • it’s mass murder (not its mass murder)
    • insignificant to Cassie’s feelings: I think you mean indifferent
    • two BILLION less than we did
    • none the wiser in this situation thAn they are

    Commented on: December 3, 2013

  • Carriers

    The action kicks in in this chapter, which is great, because if this is a plague story then a high-speed plot is expected – people won’t sit around twiddling their thumbs when there’s a deadly disease spreading. I also like that you had one of the teens figure out what the virus is for rather than the doctor telling them. And I like the doctor! I don’t know if I’m supposed to, ie if you plan to have him as the bad guy that should be hated, but I do. It’s like he saying, ‘Ok, you stupid teens got yourself infected with the sub-standard version. So now stop whining and go out there and spread it already.’

    Editing

    • body-shaking (not shacking) cough
    • become aware OF the fact
    • some of your paragraphs are not indented (minor detail, but it matters to some people)
    • from other humans: if you’d like to make the guy sound creepier, you could say ‘from other subjects’ – that shows that he doesn’t see the sick people as human
    • when one of triggered infection (missing word? when one of YOU?)

    Commented on: December 3, 2013

  • Gifted

    It’s sad that Carey still thinks of 256 as one of the enemy, as shown by her dream. Oh well, one can always hope... He’s being really nice to her, partly because he thinks that’s his job, of course, but as you indicated at the end of the chapter, perhaps also because for the first time in his life he’s feeling something for someone else.

    So Jan and Sam get a reality check (pardon the short forms, I always do that cause I can’t remember how to spell characters’ proper names). That gives your plot substance and plausibility. I haven’t really warmed up to these two characters yet. Maybe because I don’t really understand their motivation yet apart from simple revenge.

    Editing:

    • a peaceful night’s rest (missing apostrophe)
    • there are quite a few questions in dialogue that are not punctuated with ? but I didn’t point them all out here
    • “Yes you are,” she said, as if that solved it: would ‘settled’ be a better word for ‘solved’ here?

    Commented on: December 3, 2013

  • Gifted

    This chapter humanises the Gifted even further, particularly 256’s memory of his teacher. The interaction between 256 and Carey is very natural. I’m glad that she’s gotten over her initial mistrust and is ‘opening up’ to him. Romance radar activated.... :D

    On Janelle/Sam’s end, the bit with Janelle not trusting Marvin is good, and it answered my earlier question on that issue, even if Marvin didn’t give any real answer. You are giving more information on the Gifted, so this is the point where you need to be careful and be consistent in your ‘facts’ or else you’d have to do major rewriting of earlier chapters later on.

    One small nitpicky thing is that you word the characters’ thoughts like dialogue. The convention is to write thoughts as reported speech, I believe, unless it’s an utterance that is unsaid. Eg instead of ‘She’s probably dehydrated,” he thought, it would be He decided / concluded / thought she was probably just dehydrated.

    Editing

    • with only A few young children
    • from the SIGHT of him

    Commented on: December 3, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    Iggy's had multiple past lives, but he (we'll stick to that pronoun since he's in a male form) can't remember which one was the first and real live. My premise is that there is one of Iggy's kind in most if not all human beings - within the dark part of who they are, and they only need to be set free from the human host under the right conditions. The way Iggy's kind reproduce is when a mature one (a formless one) identifies a new member of the race and calls to it in the moment just after death. 

    Commented on: December 3, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    I'm relieved that you find it funny, and rather happy too, since I was indeed aiming for a little humour in this chapter. I was more worried, though, that the intensity of the content would put people off, and I feel very reassured after reading your comment. Thank you!

    Commented on: December 3, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    Yay, I did manage to sound a little creepy then! On the little things that don't quite fit, if it's in the dialogue (external or internal), then it might be because I'm not a native speaker of English, so I don't actually know how people talk 'naturally'. I speak all proper usually and you'd probably find me insufferably stuffy.

    Commented on: December 3, 2013

  • Gifted

    Plot-wise, it’s rather hard to accept that the ladies would trust Marvin so easily, and that he in turn would agree to help them straightaway. I think it’s because you haven’t made it clear enough that the majority of people are against the Gifted, which would make this partnership more believable. However, the fact that Marvin has no illusions about their chances of success helps to temper this somewhat.

    On the part of Carey, I like that she’s beginning to see that the Gifted are not what she has assumed them to be, and I still like the interaction between her and 256 very much. It also seems that 256 is starting to think about his own situation due to her questions, and that could be a significant development.

    Editing: our father soon after... (missing word after ‘father’)

    Commented on: December 2, 2013

  • Gifted

    I like 256, straight off. I like that he has a conscience, and that he thinks Carey is pretty. I also like the way he talks, so reasonable and unexcitable unlike Carey. I get the impression that he's a little clueless when it comes to girls, and I have a major soft spot for that kind of male character.

    It's good that you start explaining how the Gifted are brought up by the Council to think of themselves as superior etc – it helps to clarify the divide between the gifted and ungifted. I also look forward to seeing how you intend to have 256 train this very unwilling new recruit who is as likely to stab him as learn anything from him.

    Editing:

    • acidentAlly kill them / murdering
    • no matter what Gift (not ‘not matter what’)

    Commented on: December 2, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    The idea was that even if Stan told anyone about Iggy (which he can't do without compromising himself), nobody would believe him because it's just too fantastic. As for Ash, Iggy is able to read minds to a certain degree, so what Iggy is saying about Ash is a result of that 'eavesdropping'. Spoiler: the next chapter takes place mostly inside somebody's head.

    Commented on: December 2, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    That's the whole idea of ITCOYE - it's a DIY read! Readers can read or interpret Iggy as they please, as the 'innocent' predator or the lovestruck hunter or the cynical ghoul. Iggy isn't human anyway, so human rules don't necessarily apply to him/her/it. 

    Commented on: December 2, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    Yes, the capitalization is deliberate. But thanks for pointing out the typo on 'questions'. I try to keep my work error free but one or two do slip through now and then.

    Commented on: December 2, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    Unexpected? :D This is the point in the story where many people stop, scrunch up their faces and drop the rest of it. I'm glad that you weren't put off!

    Commented on: December 1, 2013

  • More Than Meets the Eye

    I like the way you talk about words in the starting, like they are living things. You repeat the same motif at the end of the chapter, which is also a nice touch. However, I don’t quite understand the last phrase on the leader’s eyes, because you had already mentioned earlier that he had electric blue eyes.

    Language-wise, there are a few word choices that I find out of place, namely

        ‘couldn’t resist shivering’ – I associate ‘couldn’t resist’ with something tempting; would ‘couldn’t help shivering’ or ‘couldn’t hold back a shiver’ be more consistent with the shiver?

        blaring lights – blazing lights?

        loud drop sound – loud drip(ping) sound?

     

    Commented on: December 1, 2013

  • Run

    I like your writing so far. It’s tight, the tension builds up well, there’s enough mystery to make me want to read on. Also, the story is typo-free, as far as I can see, and that’s a BIG plus point for me.

    Kim’s confusion is well portrayed, I felt, but Ira’s behavior came across as ‘too much, too soon’. It would be creepier (if that is your intention for Ira) if she was portrayed as normal and caring and ‘we’re in this together’ for now, and then only let her ‘you can’t get away from me’ craziness show in later chapters.

    Some people have a problem with stories that drop the reader right into the middle of the action without much background. Although I’m not one of them, I just want to point out that some background will be necessary before long in order not to alienate this kind of reader. Or well, you could just say ‘I don’t care’ and tell the story any way you want.

    Commented on: November 30, 2013

  • Carriers

    The beginning works well to lull the reader into a false sense of security – ‘it’s just another episode in a teen’s life’, they’ll think. However, you drop some hints that something is not quite right, and that leads well into your chapter ending. Still, I think the sentence ‘Of course, she had no idea it would be her last opportunity to do so.’ acts as a spoiler. Would it be more effective if you left it out, let the reader think that everything’s normal and then drop your surprise? Then you could insert that sentence later as a reflection on Shay’s part.

    I enjoy your descriptions of the characters, which helps me to visualize them as I’m reading. There are rather a lot of them introduced here, so it got a bit overwhelming. But I’m sure I’ll figure out who is whom once I read a little further into the story.

    You’re very direct in the clues that you give about what is happening to the teenagers with the warnings on infection and germs being released. On one hand, this means that there is no possible doubt that the reader would understand what is happening, but on the other, you could increase the suspense by not having those warnings and letting them work out that something awful is happening by means of other signs – red lights, siren, countdown, etc. The last sentence on the pain beginning would be enough to show that something bad has indeed happened to them.

    Editing:

    • WHO lacked an attention span
    • slipped out her phone with UTMOST caution
    •  fairly average height, like HER
    • LINED with cold metal desks
    • the NUMBER of human beings? (actually if you didn’t explicitly point out that it’s the population of earth, it won’t be as obvious at you said it was. What would make it obvious would be three numbers: births, deaths and the difference, with maybe a B / D / P for each other)

    Like I said, if you prefer that I leave your language alone, let me know. BTW when I give editing suggestions, the capitals are to highlight the change I’m recommending, I’m not shouting. :) 

    Commented on: November 30, 2013

  • Gifted

    First off, my top priority in a story is the plot. I like original, twisty plots; so far this plot is interesting enough to keep me wanting to find out more. So in this chapter, right away, Carey’s gift is identified as such. As I mentioned earlier, there are two sides to it: obviousness makes a story easy to understand, but giving clues keeps a reader mentally engaged. You might want to revise your summary as well, to indicate that perhaps Carey is a new kind of gifted person, one that doesn’t manifest her ability until well past babyhood.

    There is no earlier indication that Harold’s mother is an innkeeper, so that came rather suddenly. Perhaps you could insert a sentence somewhere in her dialogue. Probably somewhere after ‘That was not what Janelle had expected.’ Something along the lines of “I have an inn, small but very comfortable, perfect for weary travellers like you,” the woman explained. That removed some of Janelle’s doubt about why she would suddenly take in strangers into her home, and why the boy was so excited to meet travellers.

    I’d thought earlier that the gifted children were taken away to serve some unnamed tyrant, but now it seems that the Gifted themselves are the oppressors in some way (which is also not explained so far). That changes some things. For instance it makes Janelle and Samantha’s desire for revenge all the harder to get. Are they angry because the Gifted turned their siblings against them?

    Editing:

    • tearS fell from her eyes
    • like nothing WAS wrong

    Commented on: November 29, 2013

  • In the Corner of Your Eye

    The story was my attempt at a horror-romance, so if you felt that creepy vibe, then I guess I'm doing something right, haha. I try to use the formatting to show the inner workings of Iggy; I'm glad it didn't turn out too hard to handle.

    Commented on: November 29, 2013

  • Gifted

    You provide a very clear background for the story in terms of Carey’s family, Janelle and Samantha, and the premise of the story in general, i.e. the identification of the gifted ones. By making everything explicit, you are making it easier for your readers to get into the story. However, you could also try to let the readers work out some things for themselves, e.g. from their conversation or by describing some of their inner thoughts and feelings.

    Janelle and Samantha’s desire for revenge is understandable to me, but I feel that it needs to be developed a little more to make them more relatable to readers. No doubt you’ll do so in later chapters.  

    The ending of the chapter came as a surprise, and worked well to make me want to go on reading. I just have a minor question on how Carey could kick the man from behind when he was supposed to be holding her by the throat, and so they were presumably face to face.

    Editing:

    • her brothers’ and sisters’ Assessments (missing apostrophes)
    • united in their DESIRE FOR revenge

    Like I said, if you prefer that I leave your language alone, let me know. BTW when I give editing suggestions, the capitals are to highlight the change I’m recommending, I’m not shouting. :) 

    Commented on: November 29, 2013