|Reviews for Simple & Clean|
| Damned to heaven chapter 3 . 9/30/2009
Glad she gave him a chance. Loved it.
| Ravina chapter 3 . 12/17/2008
You deserve more reviews - seriously!
Very well written, and it had great character development.
| Nopotofgold chapter 3 . 12/16/2008
I just refound the story. It was a good ending. I really wish it was longer just because I like the charaters too.
| nagekinoki chapter 2 . 8/7/2008
From the first two chapters I have some strengths of your writing I really like, some weaknesses and some neutral observations.
1. A great amount of consistency within a character's persona. Stassi is wavering, undecided, weak but attempting to portray strength, opportunistic. It'd be easy to have her have a sudden breakdown (which I think may be likely), but you're taking the harder route of trying to make her behave like an adult.
2. An interesting counter-player in the form of Carter. He has a unique personality relative to a lot of romance stories and is actually the voice of reason, which doesn't seem to actually emanate from Stassi.
3. Some good descriptive writing - I like your ability to balance speech, action and background detail. The story has a slow, thoughtful pace to it - almost like the quandary Stassi finds herself in.
1. Not being well-detailed about the main character. Now, I don't really know if that's supposed to come out gradually within the story, but it is really hard to understand Stassi's point of view unless you can give us something more concrete to work with. She sounds needy about her ex without understanding why, but she sounds independent enough to go to the Sahara and manage a household on her own while her father is in Alaska and the Arctic? In that, you find a lot of tension which you could explore and I think it could be a rich ground to discuss, and I think at this early point it's really important to at least give your reader some idea of how this (what I perceive as contradiction) can arise.
It becomes a little cloudier now that I think about the servants, indicating that she lives with her father, and I'm not sure if that means she's an adult living at home or a student. I assume the former, but that makes it even harder to accept that she would be so needy if she's self-managing enough to run servants (it does take some organization) and her own life.
You also don't really give a good explanation of where she is in life - is she in transition in general, is she established at her job, does she have non-relationship dreams? In a way, Stassi really comes off as 1-D even though you stay very consistent inside her perspective.
2. Unless you make Carter look a little more imperfect (which is possible, since it is first impressions and one tends to be more critical when meeting someone for the first time), the semi-180 he does between being used as rebound and wanting something more seems a little unrealistic. See, there is nothing in his manner which belies impatience, or genuine desire most of the time. His manner comes off as polite, but almost pitying of sorts. And if it's polite and pitying, that tends to include doing what you feel won't be costly to yourself relative to helping another (ie, being used in this manner).
3. I wish you had more descriptions of things because it might give us an ability to at least guess as to why she feels like she's pining. You have to tie more of the current surrounding to her yearning - often, comparison tends to be drawn to what you're thinking of. For instance, is the difference in weather between where she is and the Sahara (where she used to be) something which makes her think slightly, or does it not? Does the simple act of seeing people, in contrast to the Sahara, make her feel affected in some way? Even if you don't say that Stassi has a reason for feeling affected, or doesn't, then it gives us some ability to have insight. Involvement of a reader in this kind of story requires us to have a certain level of empathy for the characters, and without some further detail the examination of Stassi, even with her first person perspective, feels distanced. It's like looking at Holden Caulfield - you can't really figure out what he's feeling as a grand sum, but all the indications Salinger has in the story gives you some ability to at least guess.
1. I actually seem to have a better sense of what Stassi's friends (Sara and Kylie) are thinking as compared to Stassi, even though I know even less about them. This could be intentional, unintentional or not - it will be interesting to see how you choose to develop this.
2. Stassi's relationship with her dad is hard to define: she's either dependent on him, not dependent on him, or dependent while trying to maintain an illusion of independence (hence, not answering the phone). It also looks somewhere between caring (him calling), adversarial (her not even choosing to let him know how she is in the weeks she's back) and plain strangers (Alaska and the Arctic?). I'm not sure if he's intended to remain as the 'shadow figure' who merely provides money, but I hope not, because those kinds of stories tend to encroach on the realism of the situation completely.
You know how to reach me - I hope you can make use of what I've said so far.
| murderprotocol chapter 2 . 8/6/2008
Oh, I sympathise with Stassi right now. I hate getting out of bed some mornings. But I'd get up for Carter. Especially Carter with gifts. :)
So Kelly is... her step-mother? Or is Kelly's husband George, in which case, are they hired help? So obviously Stassi's father has a bit of money. And it's funny that she used Stassi's full name - I'm usually not a fan of it unless it's used in the right situation, and in this instance, it shows a bond. Or at least it shows that Kelly's been around for awhile and probably knows Stassi a lot better than she's like her to.
I just have to say I really like that we don't know who her ex is or even what his name is. He's just him. And I love that Stassi thinks it's him at the door and not Carter.
Ooh, Carter's annoyed. I like broody men.
I love Stassi's dislike of Carter at this point. It would only be natural to not like feeling something for someone else when you've just broken up with someone. It's guilt, like you'd be cheating on them when they broke up with you, and you deserve every right to move on. Very realistic. :)
HA, a date! Oh, I'm excited... can you tell I'm reviewing as I go so I don't forget anything? I'm liking the banter between them; Carter's funny and Stassi's inner thoughts are wonderful. I think every girl at some point wants to be wanted.
Their time feeding the ducks was a great part to the development of the characters. We got to learn a little more about Stassi, and about her blooming relationship with Carter. I'm just curious to know more about him now.
The ending was great. I love that they ended up at the club, that Kylie and Sara were lecturing her and that Stassi decided to not listen to her friend and just go with things. Carter certainly did make it easy with all his confidence, but she got a reality check when he rejected her. It's almost like he'd been planning it all along to get her to realise she needs to move on from her ex. He's decent - I like that. And Stassi's revelation! I've never believed in love at first sight, but I'm a big believer in chemistry at first sight. Sometimes, you just connect with people.
There was some typos and some mixed up words, plus some more of the issues I spoke about in the last review, but of course, I'm not going to repeat it. What would be the point, hee hee. I'm still glad to help if you'd like.
I'm eager to read the next part now! I kind of feel like I relate to Stassi, in the way her emotions flip-flop. I think there's a point in everyone's life where they're constantly changing their mind and unable to settle on one course of action. And Carter, I like how he was forceful with Stassi but didn't flat out reject her - he sees there's a connection, yet leaves things up to her for when she's ready. He didn't just say goodbye. That maturity of Carter's is something special.
Anyway, I look forward to the next chapter! I hope this wasn't too all over the place. :)
| murderprotocol chapter 1 . 8/5/2008
So, I saw your little request for some help on fp_review and thought I'd check your story out. I have to admit, after skim reading it, I almost didn't continue simply because of your main character's name. I have a character named Stassi (although, the story is no longer on FP) and I always find it hard to read other stories with characters who share names with mine. It's kind of difficult to forget my character and focus on the other. But I'm still here!
I like this. From what I can tell, this isn't high school, which I like. Not that HS stories are bad, I'm just past that. But this comes across very lifelike - I saw everything in my head like it were actually happening.
I really liked the beginning - the use of repetition is a nice tool. It's almost like Stassi is in denial about being in denial. Constantly telling herself she is - it's like she has to remind herself so she can believe it. And I like that her friends aren't pushovers. In such a situation, not that I've ever been in it, I think one needs someone to just say 'get over it'.
I really like Carter - he sounds hot, hee hee. But I like that he came across intelligent, and wasn't a pushover either. He didn't whinge about her or insult her back. That shows he's got maturity on his side. It certainly doesn't mean he isn't really an arsehole, but it shows he's a man at least.
Stassi's life does sound quite interesting too. She's working on TV shows (?) and taking photographs, and goes with her dad on expeditions. That sounds like a thrill. :)
However, despite my like of the plot and characters, you do mess up your tenses from time to time, flipping to present when you're writing in past. It's tricky, I know - I always find first person POV harder to write than third. But, for example, in these sentences: "A deep male voice spoke up and I realize it was the person who steadied me.", "This was a pathetic way to get over it, but I don’t even know what I’m trying to get over.", "And now I’m trying to convince myself that he was nothing."
The first could be a typo, but it should be 'realised', not realise. The second half of the second sentence is better read 'but I [didn't] even know what [I was] trying to get over'. The third: 'And now [I was] trying to convince myself that he was nothing.'
Also, there should be commas before you use a name in dialogue. Example: when Garrett (I love bartenders...) refuses to give Stassi more alcohol, you wrote, "It's not the money Stass." It should read: "It's not the money, Stass.".
I did notice on occasion you misuse commas/semi-colons. [Six tequila shots and three kamikazes, are we nursing a broken heart here?.] A semi-colon would work better after kamikazes, whereas the semi-colon in this sentence [During the past couple weeks; when I had locked myself in my house, they had tried calling repeatedly.] would be better replaced by a comma. The semi-colon kind of throws off the pacing and the sentence doesn't quite make sense.
And I hate saying this, but sometimes I felt like it was a little wordy. That probably isn't the right term, but a few times it felt like you said too much or were using some words just to use them or it could have just been worded better. Like this sentence: 'I let myself break down into a shell and all for what?' It seems to read better (to me) as 'I let myself break down into a shell and what for?' Decription is never a bad thing, but it felt a little choppy on occasion. With some rewording though, I think you could combat this. It's something I do a lot, and when I'm reading over things, I'm always deleting stuff. It's a pain too, because it's usually good stuff! I usually just pop those things into another document and keep them for something else.
Apart from those things - which you shouldn't worry too much about because everyone does it (believe me, I'm terrible, hee hee) and the more you practise and learn the better you get - I enjoyed this. You've definitely got some talent; you caught my attention and I'm pretty fussy when it comes to FP stories! If you want some more help, I could go through it bit by bit and point out some things - I certainly don't know everything but I can help a little. Feel free to PM me. :)
I hope I offered you something useful, and that I wasn't too harsh, or made you feel like I was writing your story for you. I've just been cursed with being an editor as well as a writer. Trust me, it sucks. I hardly finish anything because I'm always picking at bits and pieces, ha ha.
Keep writing! You've got lots to offer. :)
| dreeachann chapter 2 . 7/24/2008
THAT WAS AMAZING. lol.
hahaha i cant wait for more :D
| September Sapphire chapter 1 . 5/22/2008
likin it so far!
| funnechick chapter 1 . 5/22/2008
This really seems interesting. I can't wait to find out what you do with this story.
| DreamsOnlyLastForTheNight chapter 1 . 5/21/2008
i feel so bad for her
but she didn't need to be so rude to carter
| Ashley Sauve chapter 1 . 5/21/2008
Very, very well written. Grammar, spelling and overall sentence structure are nearlt flawless.
I'm interested to see how your characters develope.
| Nopotofgold chapter 1 . 5/21/2008
Awsome first chpater. I love how she is so mean but Carter keeps trying.