|Reviews for After Lily|
| Darket chapter 3 . 8/20/2011
This is really good, it's getting spicy. I like your writing style, it's pretty good compared to other works on FP. The only thing I had to point out were little grammar errors like sentence ending like
"Thank you-" said the so-so, "...And I wanna."
The hyphon ending a sentence was always a pet peeve of mine because grammatically it's in correct as well as sentences starting with "..." but the second is fine if it ends with that. Not bad though. That's all I had to input. If you could could you read my story Dimension Hopper and give a little CC? I'd appreciate it
| Darket chapter 2 . 8/20/2011
I really liked the concept of people sulking over how they died and such. The whole afterlife was pretty funny. I like the way this story is unfolding. It has a really strong feel like I'm watching an anime which is what I've been trying to master for my story dimension hopper. No real CC for me, I'm sorry, but I really like where it's going!
| Darket chapter 1 . 8/20/2011
Sounds like it's got a little bit of promise to it so far. I'm goign to read the second chapter. Not much CC here that I can give-it's pretty well written. Not stellar, but good.
| Drake-El chapter 3 . 8/19/2011
For some weird reason, I feel like this was more descriptive than the comic...
But whatever, it's awesome, I enjoy it, can't wait to see how you continue with it (assuming that you take it in a different direction that giant amount of monsters and ice cream, which I believe you will...)
| Drake-El chapter 1 . 8/19/2011
REALLY! Man, i loved the comic and was disappointed when it wasn't updated. It's awesome to see that it's now on Fiction Press and I'm quite excited to read it...
| valderois chapter 3 . 8/19/2011
I like where this story is going so far! Lily's lack of tact makes her pretty funny, and I'm curious about the way you brought up compound spirits...hmm...
And I'm also really curious about the reasoning behind Kai's suicide...but I guess we'll find out sooner or later, right?
I'm looking forward to your next chapter!
| anonymous chapter 2 . 8/1/2011
update soon, please!
| John Jude Farragut chapter 2 . 7/31/2011
I looked over the changes you made to the prologue. The ending was much stronger and clearer, and I love the description of him looking at himself in the mirror and seeing his invisibility. That was awesome!
You've kept up the momentum in your story in the first chapter. I clicked onto the first chapter and read it through quickly (although I usually re-read chapters a few times to make sure I don't miss anything). The pace is still great, the story still feels focused, and I had a great time reading it. Only a few things stood out as I read it.
As before, I'll start with the technical details.
In the sentence "Some one coughed," change "some one" to "someone."
In the sentence "Kai stretched; glad to finally be out of that chair, when the counselor appeared behind him," the semicolon needs to be a comma. Appositives are separated by either commas (almost always) or dashes (rarely, for an abrupt shift in tone).
When Kai explains why he has a job, he says, "Doing nothing all day will drive you crazy." It sounds like he's saying that to someone else, as if it's a matter of fact. Since it would drive him crazy most likely, the sentence should be "Doing nothing all day will drive me crazy."
The phrase "cities records" isn't clear; are you referring to one city or multiple cities? If it's multiple cities, put an apostrophe at the end of "cities"; if it's just city, change it to "city's."
In the sentence "You weren't expecting it all to just go away were you?" Since Kai is addressing someone (himself, in this case), put a comma after "away."
The biggest technical point to stress is the dialogue. Most of your dialogue sentences go like this:
"My name is Kai Harukawa." He said.
Whenever you use a dialogue tag such as "he said or "she said," put a comma before the closing quotes:
"My name is Kai Harukawa," he said.
(Note that the pronoun's first letter is left lowercase.)
But if your sentence ends in a question or exclamation, then the punctuation is OK. This sentence...
"Stress from what?" spat an older man
...is correct. (The lowercase 's' in "spat" is correct, too.)
Sentences like these are the tricky ones:
"I'm just glad it's over." The rest of the room was silent.
You wrote this perfectly since you don't transition into a dialogue tag.
This sentence ends with a dash, but the capitalization of "He" is perfect because there's no dialogue tag:
"I would never have thought that I would - " He stopped cold.
The dialogue rules can be a bit confusing, so if you have any questions or would like some clarification, let me know. (It took me a while to get the hang of it myself.)
Now, onto the story details.
The dialogue is great: it's not melodramatic or stilted. With a story this dark, it'd probably be easy to make it too dark or dramatic; you did a great job with your conversations and thoughts.
The concept is still solid, and I love the intake agency and how it works. What a great idea!
I said in my last review that it would be nice to see more of Kai's situation, but I'd like to correct it. Reading this chapter made me more comfortable with his situation; I know him better now that I see him interacting with this new world. It's like friends or acquaintances: you don't need to say everything to be cool with each other. (In fact, less said is often better.)
I also like Lily a lot, especially where she says "Calling him our boss is like calling the President a politician!"
One line about Lily made me go "Wow." It was, "If there was one thing that she had plenty of, it was time." Little things like that show that authors know their stories intimately, and I can tell that you know yours that deeply.
When Kai gets overwhelmed in counseling, he stands up and his chair falls. But how does his chair fall? Does he lift it up as he stands, or does he push it back? I think if he's reacting as strongly as he is, he'd either jump up from the chair (without hearing it make a noise) or push it out from under him (which would make it scrape across the floor). Plus, a chair probably wouldn't fall with a metallic clink; it would sound like a thump, or (in this case, because of his strong emotions) it would sound like a metallic slam (if it gets thrown to the floor) or a scrape (if he pushes it away).
When he's outside, he has a conversation with an "all too familiar voice." When I read that part, it sounded like someone else talking to him, especially when he says that "Mercifully, the voice complied." If it's someone else talking to him, then it should be shown that he's talking to someone else. If he's talking to himself, then his voice would nag at him until he forces it to shut up.
I recommend changing the sentence "Without thinking, he started to do something that he shouldn't have." You can either remove the sentence or show why he shouldn't be doing it.
I don't read ghost stories at all, so I'm writing this next point with extra care. By now, I think the ghosts need clearer descriptions or an indication of the kind of world they live in. Since Kai's interacting with other ghosts, how does he know they're there? Are they invisible to each other, a force that they can feel? Are they pearly-white like the ghosts in Harry Potter? Do they look like regular humans, invisible to the living world? My guess is they and their world look just like ours, but we just can't see them.
The setting itself isn't quite clear to me. Kai says that he felt the cool air of the city; again, this makes me think of the real world. (Actually, San Francisco came to mind right away.) Do the ghosts live in a different dimension? Someone comes and brings them away, but what's the place like? Is it like our world? Is it a metropolis shrouded in dark mist? I think the things that are obvious to Kai should be obvious to me as a reader by now; they aren't, but that's probably because I just don't read ghost stories or know what's to be expected in them.
To sum up, I'm still enjoying the story. The story keeps building up, and it's a lot of fun to read. The technical details still need some attention: the things I said about dashes and mild interjections, and the descriptions of the obvious things-the world and people that Kai sees from day to day-are the biggest things to note.
For not writing in a long time, you have a really strong story here, and you show a lot of talent and a knack for thinking things through. Keep it up!
| John Jude Farragut chapter 1 . 7/27/2011
Hi! I know I said I was going to PM you with my thoughts, but you can write more in a review, and I wanted to subscribe and up your review count. :)
I love your story so far! The story feels solid, the concept is great, and the angst and darkness are just right-not over-the-top, not wangsty, but real. It feels like you've had this story in mind for a long time; you've got a lot of talent, you think through your ideas, and it really shows in your work.
The first things I'll go over are the technical details.
So far, the grammar, punctuation, and spelling are excellent: you've got a good command of the language. Only a few things need changing, but they're simple.
You'll need to get rid of the hyphen in "in-between." It's always spelled "in between."
A couple dashes need to be spaced out: for example, "he was dead- a ghost" should be "he was dead - a ghost," and "the same- and somehow" should be "the same - and somehow." If you can't fix the dashes, it's all good: both FanFiction and FictionPress mess up a lot of formatting.
Also, put a comma into "Well it's too late for that now, isn't it?" Mild interjections like "Oh," "Well," "Hey," and so on need commas after them; in this case, the sentence should read, "Well, it's too late for that now, isn't it?"
(Here's the weird thing: There's only one mild interjection that doesn't get a comma after it: "O"...as in, "O you contemptible cur!" But since it's used mostly in poetry and song, you'd just use "Oh"...as in, "Oh, go sit on a tack!")
On that lovely note, now for the story details.
You're doing a great job at showing what's going on in Kai's head. It's interesting to see how he processes things-seeing his dead body in his last seconds, his weightlessness, his looking at himself and seeing a stranger, and so on. That's really awesome.
The only thing that I wondered was why he killed himself. Already, you've got a strong premise-he kills himself, realizes he's a ghost, and struggles with accepting it. But I think it would make him a stronger, more compelling character if the audience knew more about him. His life "spiraled into a living hell," but what happened over that year? Why did he kill himself? You don't need to show all of what happened or even show the main reason; actually, just a strategic detail or two would show what brought him to this point. It would make the audience feel his relief, regret, wishing he didn't do it, etc. His character and his emotions just don't feel completely rounded to me.
The ending needs a bit more of a punch. The last sentence could be a little less wordy: I read it three times before the emotion of it all sank in. If I were in his shoes, I would freak out over what I did. One idea I have is that he leaves the house, stares at the world through his ghostly eyes, and feels the weight of what he's just done. The last sentence would be a single thought: "What have I done?" That way, we see his shock and disbelief, his coming to terms with it, and the trauma ahead of him. This could tie right into the opening in the first chapter, where he's meeting with the counselors. (I took a first pass through the next chapter, and I'll go over it in my next review.)
A few things also weren't clear. In the narration, these few phrases had me asking, "What does this mean?"
"It was easy, the way it should be."
"...the sounds of his father and sister making their normal morning preparations..." (A bit wordy and unclear; this could be changed by saying, "His father and sister were downstairs." But what preparations are they doing? Does the audience need to know about them?)
"It looked the same - and somehow, it felt the same too."
With the first and third phrases, I recommend adding specific details. To say that "he felt almost exactly the same as he had when he was still alive" says a lot, but I'm curious to know what the differences are. Is he invisible? (When he approaches his dad and sister, can they see him or feel his presence?) Is he in another world, where the troubles of earth are gone and he's got new troubles of his own?
My guess is you've already worked these details out; if you have, just showing a few of them in the prologue will help the audience see what he sees and feel what he feels. If you haven't worked them out, maybe do it a bit before writing more. Your story may change as you add things, but the way I see it is this: you've got an awesome concept, and you're taking it in a great direction. Working out the details will only strengthen your ideas.
So, that's my commentary on the prologue: you have a strong concept and good grammar and punctuation, but the main character and story idea feel a bit loose in places. I'll post my thoughts on the next chapter soon. If you have any comments, corrections, etc., feel free to PM me. :)
Again, great job! Definitely one of the best fics I've read on FictionPress.
| Exotic chapter 1 . 7/16/2011
This prologue was interesting to me because I got a sense that Kai was expecting this immediate and immense relief after his death that he didn't really experience.
I'm also curious to see how Kai will appeal to readers considering he took his own life and willingly left his family behind. Suicide can be very taboo and Kai seems a little unstable, so it'll be interesting to see how he progresses as a protagonist.
Honestly, what first attracted me to the story was the mention of a 'Grim Reaper in training' because I think that's such a different idea, so I'm excited to see Lily's character introduced in the future.
Over all, good start! Can't wait for more. :)