Reviews for Organized Chaos
flowergazing chapter 1 . 7/25/2013
This sounds really interesting even though it was told very straightforward and simply :)
I like this!
Whirlymerle chapter 3 . 7/14/2013
[the herd had taken on my own agitation, bred of exhaustion] I really like your word choice of “bred” after talking about livestock. My writing professor once told us that good writers have all kinds of connections in their writing to make it flow, and I thought this was a good instance of that.

[She understood so perfectly, and I her] Just a suggestion: since you have “I her,” maybe you could say, “She understood me so perfectly” for clarity?

I like the contrasting settings between Lucien and Natara. It’s apparent how trapped Natara is, with her story mostly set in the bedroom, while we see Lucien outside, if unhappily. I think it’s also clear that Lucien and Natara are focused on different things.
Like, Lucien’s narration revolves around Natara, while Natara is more concerned with the wellbeing of her family. It’s quite bittersweet.

I thought it was an interesting technique, how you described Marcus’ cheeks in one sentence, eyes in another, cheeks in a third. It makes him seem not whole or human, which makes sense given Natara’s view of him.

I would, however, have liked to know a little about him. I expected Natara’s wedding to be slightly more memorable, even if she has nobler things to focus on. I’m very curious, why did Marcus choose to marry her, when she doesn’t seem to do anything to even pretend she cares for him and he could have had anyone with his money? I’m wondering, is there no one prettier?

[for the welcome wrinkle of a smile that never came] did she try to do anything to make him smile?

[an unkempt mind that was not to be trusted] how did she get that sense?

One possible explanation is that Natara’s so traumatized and miserable or just busy with taking care of her family that she doesn’t want to talk in specifics about how he’s abhorring, unsmiling, and possibly insane. If so, maybe you could have Lucien, whose very being seems to subsist on Natara’s existence, explain how her nuptials came to be?
Whirlymerle chapter 2 . 7/11/2013
My favorite part of this chapter is probably Lucien's obvious and kind of painful denial of his crush for Natara. I love how he's like, most people would probably say Nattie has pretty hair, it's not something I talk about, but it looks like this and this and this—he's CLEARLY spent a lot of time thinking about it. :D

[Loose curls were more welcoming than the average flame] I… was not a big fan of this line. While I see the connection between Natara’s hair and fire and what you’re doing with the flame image here, this comparison seemed a little out of the way for me. Also, in my personal opinion, the idea of flame is not particularly unwelcoming.

[A woman who doesn't know she's striking lacks the confidence to make it shine, whereas those who relish the power they know themselves to hold are a dangerous breed indeed] Well there, Lucien, you’ve clearly given a lot of thought about women and their beauty… I thought the entire paragraph on his sentiments regarding types of beautiful women was interesting, because it gave a lot of insight into his character. Obviously, this early in the chapter, I have no idea how you intend to portray him, but this is how I feel about him thus far:

He cares a lot for Natara, and I feel strongly that he means well. Heck, I’ll wager that he’s at least half in love with her, but because he’s constantly talking about innocent their friendship is, I feel like he’s not a hundred percent aware of his feelings and because of that, it’s a puppy love stage that he’s in. And as a character, he does endear (to me, at least) in that way.

Personally, however, the elements in his spiel on the things women do or not do with their beauty really rubbed me the wrong way. And to be honest, it’s probably because I’ve been indoctrinated with a fair share of (postmodern?) feminist ideas. I found the gospel according to Lucien kind of obnoxious, if not offensive. He uses some incredibly strong words, like “dangerous” and “evil,” which I feel like indicates his own naivety, but also an uncomfortable kind of black-and-white-mindedness. The fact that he’s idealizing women who are confident enough to be aware of their beauty, but like Natara, view their good looks as “something between a distraction and a burden,” just to me sounds insidious. And the whole effortless honor and purity that he loves about Natara, I think, is overrated. Because, even Natara, who does an arguably “honorable” thing by marrying the rich guy to save her family, couldn’t have made that decision without effort. If anything, that would have cheapened her decision.

If Lucien admits that he’s turned on by nun/sacrificial virgin types or that those girls are fun to kiss or just focus on what gives him pleasure, he’d be easier to empathize with, I think, because everyone has a type and some are kinkier/more eccentric than others. But because he’s so in denial and establishes himself in this holier than thou position, he utters those beliefs like they’re universal maxims, and that just makes me apprehensive. Like, if he doesn’t take responsibility of his feelings soon, things are inevitably going to get ugly for him at some point.

Or maybe not. I think I just gave you the gospel according to Whirly, which likely isn’t applicable in the time where horses are the primary mode of transportation, haha. In short, I had strong feelings about Lucien’s character.

[on the horse who had always preferred her] I like this line a lot, and how bittersweet it is.
Whirlymerle chapter 1 . 6/30/2013
Your A/N makes me feel warm and fuzzy. :3

What I found most interesting in this chapter is the relationship dynamic between Natara and her father. The second line, “Papa can go to hell,” I think, demonstrates Natara’s complicated sentiments towards her father. I mean, she’s clearly upset with him. At the same time, however, she calls him “Papa,” one of the more endearing ways to call one’s father, which makes the sentence stick out all the more.

Same with this line: [Natara Williams simply does not have the same sort of ring to it as Natara Andrews] I think that shows the complexity of her situation, because it’s her father’s name that she wants to keep, even though it’s him that she’s upset with.

[accompanied in my mind as it was with the toll of a dismal bell] I really like this. I don’t know if Natara’s thinking the same thing, but since she’s getting married, it made me think of a wedding bell. But with the words “toll” and “dismal,” it feels more like a funeral bell, which in a sense, is also appropriate since her marriage marks the death of the life she knew, maybe.

This chapter is short, and I have a lot of questions, but I’m also sure that they’ll be answered in the coming chapters. Namely, I’m with the rest of your reviewers in that I was curious about the setting. Their first names make me think medieval or new-agey modern, though with everything else, I’m thinking early to mid 19th century. Or maybe an alternative universe?

The line “blistering hot all day as we rode beneath the brutal sun” intrigued me especially. I’m wondering what they were riding. A car or a horse or a wagon? That could give a lot of indication of the time period, if you don’t want to intentionally keep it vague.

Writing wise, this is very polished. There’s a lot of backstory here, which I think is necessary for the premise. I wouldn’t mind, however, if you add a little more description to what’s going on in real time while Natara’s thinking all these things. I’m wondering, where did they come out to camp? What’s the air like? What’s going on with the other kids and her father while she’s thinking? I think these details would balance out your scene a little more.
Highway Unicorn chapter 1 . 11/25/2012
I like where this plot is heading. Natara seems like a well written out character with a strong voice/emotion to her, which makes her likable and relatable. I think it's nice to see a character show this type of emotion towards a situation where she is forced to wed; it promises a good dramatic read.

I also like the brief back history that was mention, with Lucien and how she had to step up to raise the siblings. It shows her stronger side, and it also hints that those factors may pop up agian in the future.

I think my favorite part was "Papa can go to hell." It was a good twist that I didn't see coming based on the first sentence. :D
Vivace.Assai chapter 1 . 6/21/2012
Sorry for the late review return. I've been busy this week.

This story does have an interesting premise, though there are so many different versions following the same premise that I'm not exactly sure how you can make this story different than what I've heard. But I'm open and maybe with the right creativity, you can out an imaginative spin on everything. I don't know. It's too early to tell.

But anyways, you've immediately jumped into Natara's character rather nicely. Even with the simplistic dialogue, you've gotten her e options and feelings really clear to the readers. This suggests that she might become a sympathetic character in later chapters allowing for more interest readers. As of now, I don't really feel that much for her. I pity her situation but the problem is, I hardly know her yet. She's a stranger to me, so I feel sadness for her arranged marriage as I feel for any arranged marriage but not on a personal scale. So her emotions do reach me but not quite as impactful as it could be.

Thanks for the author's note about the setting. It clarifies everything a lot more, but the only problem is that I'm not sure if it is a good idea to have to rely on notes to explain thing. You can't explain the setting or any confusion to the readers when you publish a novel. It would be better to integrate that setting into the narration, since a novel should have the exposition with the setting. But that is just a suggestion.

Thanks for the interesting read,

Signing off...
professional griefer chapter 1 . 6/19/2012
This confused me the tiniest bit. First of all, what time period is it? Is it our world? You give some indication that it's the past from the arranged marriage, but she speaks a bit like someone modern.

You don't explain a whole lot in general, and that bothered me. It's so short, I think you should have taken the time to expand this a bit more.

I like your narrative style and how you introduce the conflict straight up, that made it interesting. She seems a bit bland so far, though, you might want to work on her character.

The details were adequate, I could vaguely picture everything.

It was nice, just too short to tell much else.
OneOriginalThing chapter 1 . 6/19/2012
I liked this chapter because it's rich in a way. Your charector comes to life, you can see her internal conflict and in a way i can tell she's still young because she doesn't entirely understand wether her sister is lucky to never have known their mother there-for not miss her or unlicky because she never got to see her father's good side. I also like how she talks about how her last name has that ring to it now, and it won't once she get's married. It helps the audience see that she's still young, and innocent i suppose. I dislike that i can't picture the setting in my head. And it's hard for me to understand if this is something that happens very ofton. or this is something new. WHat time period is this in? What ethnicity are these people? All these questions usually should be answered in the first chapter. But overall awsome job. it was short and to the point. it'll keep people hooked longer.
Guest chapter 15 . 6/18/2012
I love this story! Very well written. I also love the dynamic between Natara and her husband. It will be interesting to see if they fall in love. I understand Natara's feelings but I hope that she will finally give her husband a break even though I do not like the fact that he sees her as his possession. Madison is such a sweetheart I hope that she finds love. Also finally the fight between Natara and Madison was so hilarious lollll. You made it even funnier because of the way you told it lol.
Rogue Energizer Bunny chapter 3 . 6/17/2012
Prose is a little dense and wordy. Maybe that's just a stylistic thing. I'm not sure; I kinda think it makes it hard to read.

I love the lines "It's just that today I did not lose my virginity. It was taken from me." In fact, I think setting them out of the paragraph would help bring more attention to them, since it's such a profound thought.

Rogue Energizer Bunny chapter 2 . 6/17/2012
I like the introduction of Lucien's point of view-very insightful.

I wish there was more development in this chapter, really. It develops the relationship between the characters, but not the conflict, and there isn't much in the way of plot. Maybe add some more scenes?

And the paragraphs are really intimidating in Lucien's POV, LOL. Most people are too lazy to read through them when they're that long.

Rogue Energizer Bunny chapter 1 . 6/17/2012
I love this as an opening chapter. The pacing is good, and it gives a lot of good information without dumping it. It establishes the conflict well too.

I think some of the paragraphs are a little long, and so some of the sentences loose impact. That's just my feeling.

TinfoilKnight chapter 1 . 6/16/2012
Nice chapter! I like that you introduce the main conflict right away. I already like the main character, you did a good job of characterizing her. Her voice is my favorite part about this scene - it sounds like a seventeen year old, yet it's not so casual it's annoying. And the part about wanting to cuddle with Lucien is sweet, and it makes me like her even more. :3

So far I'm excited to read more, and I can't find anything wrong with this chapter. :) See you around the RG?
Whirlymerle chapter 14 . 6/15/2012
Hi from the review game!

[He carried with him the same burden as I.] small grammar mistake—you're comparing "burden" to "I" here. Should be something along the lines of "the same burden as I did"

So I jumped to your latest chapter and don't have all the background. However, I like the character of Natara a lot just from this. I think you gave her depth by showing that while she's trying to appease her husband, there's a more flippant side of her, like when she says "I do so like to get my way."

I like the scene between Madison and Marcus. Even though they seem to be near strangers, I like how they gradually grew more familiar as they talked and you ended on a very tender note.

this wild abyss chapter 1 . 6/13/2012
So right away I'm really curious as to the setting. From Natara's diction I get the sense that this takes place in the 21st century or thereabouts. However, she's being forced to marry a man she's never met. That is definitely a little abnormal for most modern Western societies, especially since she's only 17. If this takes place in the East, that's a little more understandable, but since you never established that, your entire premise, for me, is pushing credibility. I mean, since her new last name is Williams it sounds like she's in a Western country, and I don't really feel like it's legal in a lost of first world countries to force your seventeen year old daughter to marry someone. So yeah, I'm not exactly buying this. To make this more believable I'm going to need more information—there are times when being vague doesn't work well.

I also wasn't a fan of how Natara broke the fourth wall constantly. I don't like it when a novel's narrator addresses me like one of her girlfriends at the day spa. It's a technical aspect of a plot that doesn't tend to work very and even if it does, too much can get old. And for me, having Natara talk to the reader was a bad choice.

And in general, I'm not sure that I can like Natara as a character. She obviously doesn't seem to want to marry this person, but she's allowing her family to pressure her into it. To me, that speaks of a girl with no backbone. I mean, it's all well and fine that she wants the best for her family, but there is a time when you have to preserve your own happiness. Just bending over at 17 and throwing your life away hardly makes me like her as a main character.

As far as plot, I'm not sure where you can take this. I see two options. First, Natara ditches her husband and does her own thing. Second, Natara realizes how great her husband is and stays with him. I really dearly hope it's not the second.
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