|Reviews for Footy Highlights|
| Persevera 9/1/12 . chapter 1
Not sure about word choice. If this is supposed to be narrated by a boy, would he use a word like adorn? I don't think that word is correct in the sentence anyway, unless you would say that the girls adorned their skirts and jumpers with something.
The standout characters are the narrator, Chrissy and the boy with glasses. It's good that the hot-shot narrator can learn something about real bravery from the boy and leadership from the girl. Gregory, who hits girls then cries when he sees someone willing to stand up to him, has only one redeemable characteristic-that he only beat someone to a pulp if he/she said no.
I like the story and its lesson. I like that the narrator's teammates all stood with him then others joined in. Too bad they couldn't do something similar for the poor kid in the first place though.
The ending was great. It was simple, with the concerned mom, who just wanted to raise her son, not necessarily a hero. The why indeed, though, was a little more complex, as the hero admitted he was bothered by the beating but probably wouldn't have taken action if he weren't trying to impress a girl.
| lookingwest 8/28/12 . chapter 1
Okay, one final note about ellipses in your narration and I'm just going to say screw it and never say anything again. I don't get it. I remember awhile ago you (probably sarcastically/jokingly) said you would want me as your teacher. Well I'm trying to teach you - and I've been trying to teach you not to use ellipses in narration. But you keep using it - as if, for some weird reason, you're just throwing my advice down a garbage can. I feel like I'm being ignored and/or not taken seriously. But I'm serious - it doesn't make any sense, and it's not grammatically correct. You could give me the excuse that this is an older piece of writing that you just posted up - so? You needed to edit them out, then. Edit, edit, edit - a piece of fiction is *never* perfect. Never. Things can always be improved. Yet for some bizarre reason, your new posted works *still* have ellipses in the narration, even though you could've easily edited them out because you know they're not right. I'm not the only one who has told you about them either, but I feel like you're ignoring me and I'm a little offended to see them in your new work. I'm also offended as a reader - as if you think the Fictionpress audience doesn't need your best and brightest, that you can half-ass it here because it's not "really" published. Don't you get sick of people commenting on them? Wouldn't you *rather* have reviewers comment on something more concrete, the characters, the scenes, the settings? I mean, half of everyone could just throw away one of their sentences in Easy-Fix for this ellipses comment that you *already* know about. Why throw away that constructive criticism you could get elsewhere? Use Fictionpress to your advantage, an experimental spring board. As much as you play the games, you could be changing and getting different angles on most stories if you bothered to edit them and tweak them, but you don't take advantage of this to improve your skill. I don't get it! I'm trying to help you grow as a writer, honestly, and you can't even work on this one simple thing - I dunno, it just turns me off * immediately* to this story, because seeing them there means that you probably have ignored all other advice/teachings people have given you for writing too. That you didn't edit this even after it won that award. Again - things *always* can be edited. No matter what. And I know you're an intelligent person, so this is why I'm being up-front. So translation: I didn't like the ellipses because they're starting to feel like a slap in my face for blatantly disregarding helpful work that me and other people have put in to reading your fiction and giving constructive criticism. This takes time to do - I'd like to see some change for once.
I found the situation introduced cliche, I think the character of the boy could've been improved so that he wasn't just a classic "nerd" looking kid getting beat up. We've seen that a million times before. You could keep the smarts but throw away the looks in my opinion, give it more of an original spin, excite the reader with something they haven't seen before in a character archetype. Right now it feels too stock.
I didn't like the last sentence of "Why Indeed?", but I liked the three paragraphs before it. I would almost cut it and leave it at "She always did". This got more interesting towards the end, and overall I think your balance of detail and writing style was well balanced in this piece. It's one of the more clearer pieces from you and it had multiple characters that you handled well. I liked it in that regard. The scenes were well framed narrative-wise.
| natalieward 8/28/12 . chapter 1
Writing: I really like it, it's very descriptive and there's not a lot of dialogue, which some people hate. The whole show, don't tell mentality...I personally don't think that always works, so ignore it, and hey am guilty of it. What I will say though is your writing is very definitely Australian! Maybe cause I am too, but it definitely stands out.
Plot: Interesting. I think you have created some interesting atmosphere and tension with this fight scene, because it's never really disclosed what it's about. The introduction of the sister and the second hand knowledge of the victim adds another dynamic.
Characters: I really want to know more about this observer. This is a good thing, because you have lured me in, but also, we need alittle more on why he is watching and observing the way he is...You do capture it with the whole Chrissy relationship, but somehow I want to know more...I guess this will come out in future chapters.
Ending: It's good. I like how you sum up how he feels watching the fight and the reaction of the girl he likes, and then bring it back home. The question posed at the very end, the last line is good and I think it opens up a lot of thought about what is going to come next. How will he respond to the fall out of this fight, Chrissy, his mother etc..
| Lizzie5115 8/28/12 . chapter 1
I really liked this. The thought process that went through his head before stepping in to the fight was very realistic. Even thinking about the girl, this whole thing was probably less 5 minutes but i believed every thought he had before intervening.
I didn't like the lack of description in the some of the scenes. I know you had a 1500 word limit for the contest you wrote this for but the piece is strong you can now revise it to be more polished now that you entered the piece.
| Dr. Self Destruct 8/26/12 . chapter 1
[ Boys, girls…all wearing the same bland grey uniform: ]
Ellipses felt weird to me. Prefer 'Boys and girls all wearing the same bland grey uniform.' The ellipses don't add drama or strengthen the tone, only slow down the pace, especially for the beginning.
[A girl in front of me backed away and I snuck into the empty spot she left behind…and spotted blood.]
They felt weird here, too. An EM dash would be better. Ellipses give a fading away tone, an EM dash a more immediate tone. If you're trying to add suspense (which I'm guessing you are since there's mention of violence and, right here, blood (and if you're not, then you really should be)) the ellipses only slows down the pace and dampens the effect.
[or watching the game…or their players.]
Same here. In fact, I'm just going to stop pointing them out because they're used so often. But aside from one or two, they all felt very out of place, like the narrator is pausing in speech because he doesn't know what to say next and is trying to gather his thoughts. Not emphasizing a tone or mood. I hear this airy voice inside my head that's trying to sound dramatic or smarter than it really is, and not doing a very good job at it.
[…but even she didn't have the balls to stare down Gregory.]
*she* didn't have the balls? I found this weird, considering girls don't have balls. I know using this phrase can be done in regards to a female (I've told people before about me not having the balls to do something) but the narrator doesn't strike me as crude enough to use that term of phrase for a female. Maybe it's different in Australia and they toss that phrase around a lot more freely, I dunno.
I liked how you kept bringing the attention back to their socks and how they were all muddied up. I thought it was a nice image and it was a great way to segue into the rest of the story's content, like the fight.
| yWrite 8/26/12 . chapter 1
Funny thing is, this story is very realistic. Sometimes, all it takes is one person to just stand in - not even throw a punch - and spectators suddenly want to join in.
"She was always going on about how smart the guy was, but how shy." I didn't understand that part. Was it meant to be "AND how shy"?
| Highway Unicorn 8/26/12 . chapter 1
I love the overall flow of the plot, especially when the table was turned on the bully. It reminded me of my school and how all the students teamed together to help another. :) so, I guess I'm trying to say that this story was rather touching.
I like the rhetorical question at the end because it tied everything up nicely. ;)
| Anihyr Moonstar 8/25/12 . chapter 1
Here - "Boys, girls…all wearing the same bland grey uniform" - I don't think the ellipsis is necessary. I mean, I can see why you put it, but it feels a little clunky. If you really want a pause there, I might consider putting an em-dash, but that might only be because I'm too adicted to them personally. This phrasing, too "while the girls adorned the customary knee-height skirt" feels like a really awkward use of "adorned". Shouldn't it be something like they "were adorned with"? It felt wrong when I read it, but I might be mistaken.
I really like the build-up. The tension. The "nobody's doing *anything* - why is nobody doing anything?" feeling. I think that was well-handled and very real, and I was cheering the narrator on mentally by the time he finally moved out. Because sometimes, that's really all it takes, and I think you conveyed that point well.
I think you over-use ellipses in the middle of your prose, though. It almost never feels necessary when I see it pop up. If at all possible try switching it to either a comma or a period (or a dash, either en dash or em dash). Sentence fragments, when used well and sparingly for emphasis, are totally useful. :) Very nice piece.