|Reviews for The Adventures of the Space Freighter Melissa|
| ConcertMasterD 10/30/06 . chapter 1
Not bad! Some of the difficulties with your Last Man story are still here - a bit of stiffness in dialog, and some awkward transitions between speakers and actions. But there are some great scenes here, although I think you probably could have stretched things out a bit - this feels somewhat condensed. But hey, if that's the way the ideas come, that's the way they get put down - and all in all this is a great piece of short story! Thanks so much for sharing it, bro - I enjoyed. Take care, and keep it up!
| EnderWinner 10/30/06 . chapter 1
Cool, I'm liking the characters and the setup you have for the moment. I really don't have any nitpicking to do, but all around I figured it was rather well rounded. I do agree with the whole security measures thing. I know it was probably a bluff on his part, but yeah... it was rather odd that he'd admit to it.
I'm loving the fact that the teenager saves the day! _ Keep writing please!
| JonBTI 10/30/06 . chapter 1
Note: this was a follow-up message from Lorendiac. Thanks for the clarification!
Part of the review I just put on your story was wrong. Right after I posted it, I went back to your story and searched for the word "lockdown" and found a bit I must have forgotten as fast as I read it the first time, where Jennifer reflects that only her dad could end this lockdown ahead of schedule, from Engineering. I mistakenly suggested you hadn't clarified that point anywhere in this chapter. Unfortunately, there's no way to go back and edit my own silly review now that I've posted it. Sorry about that! I should have double-checked my facts first!
| Lorendiac 10/30/06 . chapter 1
So far, it gives me something of that Star Wars style, "space opera" feeling. Not the parts where the heroes are doing anything so sweeping as blowing up Death Stars and freeing a galaxy from tyranny, but other events in that same universe where things are happening on a somewhat smaller scale. Like in three well-written "prequel" novels by Brian Daley about the adventures of Han Solo, Chewbacca, and a few miscellaneous other people in the days before the original trilogy, when Han and Chewie were just shipping cargo from Place A to Place B and making a reasonable living (sometimes smuggling, of course) without being all mixed up in any great big rebellions against anybody.
With that in mind, it did not come as a total surprise when the spunky teenager ended up saving everyone else by living the kind of exciting heroics she had previously only enjoyed in videogame simulations. A classic wish-fulfillment scenario that could appeal to just about any teenager I can think of. (And there's nothing wrong with that!)
So I liked it. I intend to read the next episode, whenever you get around to posting it.
I do have one observation about a plot point where I wasn't sure what I was supposed to believe, and then I'll throw in a couple of nitpicks at no extra charge!
* Paul grinned slightly. “Actually, it’s worse than that. It takes the entire crew’s access codes, voice confirmations, and DNA samples to unlock the computer. And we have to be in Engineering. And since you don’t have all the crew…” he trailed off. The man was glaring at Paul now. *
When I read that passage, my first reaction was, "There's such a thing as having too many security precautions for your own good. What if things were in lockdown and then a single member of the crew was dead or imprisoned or otherwise unavailable for some reason, but the rest of the crew desperately wanted to end the lockdown for a very good reason? Would the sudden loss of a single person basically cripple the ship indefinitely?"
My second reaction, of course, was to question Paul's veracity. If I were the prisoner of pirates, I wouldn't necessarily feel the moral obligation to make their lives easier by telling them the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth about our local security procedures!
The Boss eventually duplicated my reasoning and announced his intention to force Paul to unlock the computer . . . but I don't think we ever found out for sure if the Boss was right that Paul could do it singlehandedly. You might want to slip in a mention somewhere of what the actual rules were, if they were different from what Paul told the pirates at one point?
And now for the Shameless Nitpicking portion of our program!
In your profile you asked us to be gentle, on account of your not being an English major, so I'll confine myself to pointing out just two varieties of typographical errors that caught my eye.
* “Hey Henry,” piped up Paul, “don’t scratch the paint job on the way in.” *
I believe that first part should go: "Hey, Henry,"
As a rule of thumb, when spoken dialogue includes the name (or a nickname, formal rank, etc.) of the person who is being directly addressed by the speaker, then that name (or nickname, etc.) should be set off by commas from the rest of the dialogue. You make that same tiny mistake at least a few more times in this chapter.
* “Of course.” Paul replied with a straight face, but a second later broke into a chuckle. *
That should actually begin:
"Of course," Paul replied
When the dialogue in quotation marks is immediately followed by words such as "Paul replied," something specifically telling us who said (or yelled, or whispered, or whatever) the words we just read, then the period at the end of the "spoken part" of the longer sentence is turned into a comma. (Although if the spoken part ends with "!" or "?" then we just leave it alone and move on!) Again, you made this mistake at least a few more times in the course of this chapter - although I noticed you didn't always make that mistake in similar passages!
Okay, that's it. I've now met my self-imposed quota for this review, with no more and no less than two nitpicks over minor typographical errors that you might want to tidy up in your spare time! Hope that wasn't too painful for you! :)