Reviews for Confessions
seredemia chapter 1 . 7/28/2010
I like how you join these contests... I never seem to be able to come up with a good idea to enter one of these things. Probably cos I bother... *lazy*

Usually, I'm not into stories with religious stuff in it (no offense to religion, it's just not my type :P), but this was actually interesting. I was curious to see how you would include the picture into this.

"You are familiar with the ten commandments, aren't you? Well, I'm here because I've committed them all."

- *Chokes* Okay, I'm not a big religious person, but those commandments include killing someone and stealing and... um, that's all I know :P. It does make you think though. Could a man like that be forgiven..? *ponders*

'staring at his hands as though he could see his sins written on them.'

- I'm loving this. It's like that picture because it shows a picture of the commandment written on the hands. That's really clever...

Ahh... So Paul killed himself... *sniff*

I loved his note at the end... "Thank you for forgiving my sins." That's really bittersweet and tragic...

Anyway, great piece overall!

sophiesix chapter 1 . 7/25/2010
I liked this, but somehow I felt it was a first chapter rather than an ending? Lol, peole are always telling me that of my stuff, so I don’t know how to fix it :). I like how you constructed the characters of Paul and the priest, and the mood was right right between dark and curious. i think you did the priests thoughts and emotions really well, and hinted rather nicely/mysteriously at Paul's.

A couple of cc’s?

Watch for lengthy sentences, especially in tense moments. E.g. consider making “He-he couldn't be serious, not when he was staring calmly back at him, like what he said wasn't significant.” into two sentences at ‘serious’.

Contrasting descriptor: e.g. ‘twitch’ and ‘ghost’ to me, twitch is a very short but sure movement, whereas ‘ghost’ conveys something fainter and slower? I’d get rid of the ‘ghost of a smile’, it’s a bit over used. Same with the silence was deafening bit.

You’ve also got a repetitive structure with the ‘so-and-so said/asked, comma, descriptor.’ Nothing wrong with it except that it’s a bit repetitive. :)

“he tore through the pages” nice, I like that! Fits perfectly.

A bit that confused me a little bit was why he couldn’t he see his daughters face before the confession? I figure it had something to do with the photo at the end… was it that he couldn’t bring himself to look at it before, until he was forgiven? A line of clarification somewhere about that would pull that loose thread together and tie the whole thing up for me!

Nice work, Avid!
Creeping Collarbones chapter 1 . 7/24/2010
This was a quick read, but I enjoyed it. I think you could've expanded on the sins or more of the priest's emotions and thoughts.

It was intriguing. I also liked how you left it kind of open.

I think you did a good job and good luck!

Tsumujikaze no Soujutsu chapter 1 . 7/18/2010
Herro there from the Roadhouse. I know I should have reviewed Persephone's Flight, but I'm not too confident of my brain being able to process any constructive stuff to say where a mid or long length chapter is concerned, so I'll just have to settle with this one for now. Please don't hate me for that. -.-

Okay, so basically this is an interesting crossover of the standard Christian spiritual stuff with the whole concept of ghost story. For your info, ghosts don't exist within the Christian/Jewish/Islamic dogma since the rule of thumb on it is that a soul will depart away from the world literally upon death.

Okay, enough of theology. Basically as I've said, this is an interesting crossover of religion thinking and since this is a secular site of course, I don't think any nutbar will go all out to bash the idea because there's no reason to. The entire transition of the story is really interesting and the end of the story was pretty much ironic in a good way. It's like we're talking about a member of the clergy, so provided his faith was as strong as someone of his status, he wouldn't have any reason to fear. Which comes to my suggestion that you could have done a certain insight on his thoughts on the area of faith and whether it had gotten compromised or it's just that the priest was truly lacking in his faith right in the first place.

Also on the issue of confession, I actually felt that you could have input a more clear cut portrayal on the priest's emotions as well. Not just on his views towards Paul like what you've done here, but at the same time that of his sins as well. Also the essence of the story would be much more convincing if you managed to capture a certain version of how Paul had sinned. Take note that because we're talking about a broken person, you could actually take liberties on the notion of sin. You don't have to go by the conventional norms. In fact it would work better if you don't do that because via this means, the reader would be impressed by how Paul viewed his own concept of sinning. Of course going like breaking the entire ten Commandments would take an immense effort to do, not to mention the relevant creativity as well, so I won't blame you for that. But maybe you could have include certain snippets of the whole thing.

Eh I think I might be playing the role of a dickweed here from what I've said so far. I hope I'm not being too critical or mean here. I actually like the concept and nature of this story. It's just that I felt the whole thing could be improved further. -.-

P.S: Pay back the review via A Ranger's Tale. :)

Add P.S: I know you're swamped with outstanding reviews, but I actually hope you can give me a certain idea on how long it will take for you to review back. I don't actually mind the duration as long as you can give me a certain idea on this aspect. :)

-From the Roadhouse. :)
Naomi Chick chapter 1 . 7/17/2010
This really was a deep prompt. It gave a straight interpertation on Paul and the sins he felt remorse over.

It had a gripping point with the priest rather shock that someone had committed every ten commandments. I love the mood tighten around the priest reading the newspaper on Paul's death.
Sercus Kaynine chapter 1 . 7/8/2010
Ah, I see. A rather straightforward interpretation of the prompt, but with a nice twist. Clever.

I liked the descriptions at the beginning, especially the one where you say even a seasoned priest couldn't get used to the silence. It really set the mood.

All in all, I enjoyed the concept. With the doubt and the note at the end, it all tied together nicely. Well done!

Good job and good luck in WCC!
Your-Magpie chapter 1 . 7/7/2010
i really liked this, it was short and sweet, and really made me think about what priests do as a role. do they help their cause by forgiving sins or are they leaving room for more sins to be had (ie killing/suicide)

one typo i noticed: "Tell me of your sins, brother, and I perhaps I will forgive them' delete the first 'I'

iris chapter 1 . 7/7/2010
interesting use of words...! commendable job! vry gripping n u cud actually visualize the scene! luved it :)

tip: ending cud have been better... but d gud thing abt d ending is dat it is left to d reader's imagination n holds the reader in the aura of the story...
Nesasio chapter 1 . 7/6/2010
This is an interesting take on the prompt. I liked how it's about the guy Paul but he also kinda drags the priest guy into his sins as well. Writing the suicide note to him was a nice touch.

I was a little disappointed that Paul didn't go into details about all his sins. I mean, maybe that's how confession works (wouldn't know) but when I read that he'd committed all the big sins, I REALLY wanted to know how. In explicit detail. I realize that's not exactly the point of this piece but even just a little bit on that subject would've made it go from good to great in my mind.
lianoid chapter 1 . 7/6/2010
The man's hushed voice echoed slightly in the small space, bouncing off the thick walls.

-Personal: Remove “slightly” or change it to “quietly/softly”.

Was he bored, this man who decided to relieve humanity's burden? Or was he nervous, the priest thought, but then decided against it. The nervous people's voices shook...

-This line confuses me because I thought the confessor was tapping his foot; so I don’t understand the “this man who decided to relieve humanity’s burden” bit. Could be just me, though.

"Tell me of your sins, brother, and I perhaps I will forgive them."

-Edit: Remove the first “I”.

The priest's eyes narrowed suspiciously, trying to unearth who this man exactly was.

-You switch between “the priest”, “brother Marcus” and “Marcus”. Although I understand who you’re talking about when using all three names, I find for style purposes it’s usually best to stick to one, maybe two at the most. You’re also switching them up at points that are obvious. (i.e. the man will call him ‘priest’ so then you’ll start referring to him as ‘the priest’).

...the man began, not still staring at his hands as though he could see his sins written on them.

-Edit?: I don’t think you want the “not” before “still”.

...and how I coped with it hasn't been, well, positive.

-Personal: I might change the comma after “well” to ellipses so that there’s a longer pause between the two words. I think it might have a smoother effect.

I want to start over fresh again..

-Personal: The “start over fresh again” reads oddly to me. Perhaps “start over again” or “start fresh again”?

Brother Marcus hobbled to the end of his driveway, picking up the Sunday paper.

-Wouldn’t he have to hobble to the end before picking up the paper? I think this line could use a bit of clarification.

Well this was kind of dark, wasn’t it? Ha-ha. I thought this was a pretty darn good piece, Avid. I really liked it. I didn’t really feel for the characters, though. I think you could have thrown in a bit more gradual emotion to help me sympathize with both characters; although I understand due to the word limit that might be difficult. (I’m still working on mine. Man, two-thousand words max is tough. S’alright, though. There are some other competitions out there with a five-hundred-word max for stories. Yikes! Ha-ha). Best of luck in WCC.
Lea Ai chapter 1 . 7/6/2010
Wow...that was eerie. Poor priest! I thought you did a good job of fleshing out the characters in this short piece. I could really see them well in my head.

My only critic would be that the newspaper article wasn't quite official enough in my opinion. In such a short piece, the newspaper would probably want to cut it down to get as much information in as few words as possible. Specifically, I think that you could rearrange the 1st paragraph [of the article] so the 3rd sentence is the 2nd sentence and remove "who died three years ago in a car accident." since in such a short blurb, "his daughter's death in 2007" would cover all the "need to know". I also think you could cut out the sentence "we were able to get information..." since newspapers rarely explain why they were able to get information-especially in such a short article-they just state the information. Sorry to be so nitpicky, but the article was the only part that took away from the "realism" for me :-D.

Great job. Good luck in WCC :-D
Vernelley chapter 1 . 7/5/2010
This was an interesting approach to the prompt of the Ten Commandments. There was definitely this down, depressing sort of feel to the story, but I think you did a good job with it. Paul was a strange character, in my opinion, but he was fairly realistic as well. The only problem here seems to be near the beginning; it's a little dialogue heavy, but the balance between narration and dialogue is better towards the end. There was a good amount of description in the opening lines though, and that was a nice way to set the scene.
Ghosts chapter 1 . 7/5/2010
This was pretty good. You had a few spelling and grammatical errors, I suggest reading your stories before posting them, though it is tedious, simple spelling errors can break a reader from the story, and that's never good.

I love how you used the prompt. When I wrote I could not for the life of me think how to insinuate the prompt instead of just outright putting it in the story, so I did the former, and I'm sourly dissapointed with it, but you have taken the prompt and become inspired! Amazing!

However, at some parts you were repetitive. That may just be my pet peeve, but repetition in a story is a super duper turn off. I also had the abstract feeling that this story followed the movie "In Bruges". I could just see all of this happening with the same tone of dark humor, and with british accents, and a medeval setting.

All in all, great job! I'm impressed :)

-The roadhouse
RandomUser674 chapter 1 . 7/5/2010
Haha, I found the end faintly humorous. I couldn't help but chuckle. Great story, and keep writing!