Reviews for The Good Doctor
Rianne.Dogs chapter 1 . 10/5/2013
I really like how the first sentence of your story sounds like it is a positive message, but then it turns out it's not positive or negative. The story is very life like, I mean that you get sucked up in their situation, in their world actually. I must say, you use a lot of -, it's not a bad thing, but if I read it critically instead of amused, then it is really obvious. I like how detailed you describe Jenna crying, you could've just do easy, but you didn't, what I really like. :-) I love how Andras brings to Jenna that he isn't sailing on a warship, but on a supply ship, and she doesn't react all happy, that's really genius. I also like that when the Doctor is gone, you still 'show' what Jenna is doing.
It's an awesome story, and I really love how much detail you put in it, even though it's a short story (right?).
InkHound chapter 1 . 6/26/2013
Not a bad story, but it's pretty rough all over. I perused the other reviews listed after I finished reading the piece, just so I wouldn't have to reiterate certain shared points of crit at length, and subsequently waste both your time and mine.

Firstly, even though it's a short one-off story taking place in your realm, there's too much dialogue and not enough description, characterization, and setting. You don't need to introduce people, things, or even concepts. When dealing with the fantasy genre (from what I've seen), the writer just dumps the reader into the world and leaves it up to them to sink or swim. But your story lacks balance, it's all just one conversation, with very little description. If you could break that up with more surrounding detail (be it person, place, or thing), that would make this story a lot more poignant and truly heart-wrenching.

Which brings me to the next point. I got bored. Flat out, bored, and then annoyed at how weak the wife was being over a measly year and half at most. Your story is relying too much on the dialogue to get the reader emotionally involved, and it fails in that regard. I'm unsure if you're familiar with military contracts, drafts, or recruitment processes at all, but a standard is typically 8yrs of service. Because no matter what civilian training or experience a person has in the field they go into, they are still given supplemental training in the military. It's a waste of anyone and everyone's time if someone is only taken for a little over a year with a 'maybe more'. If this is how your world's military is set up, alright, I'll roll with it. But! You need to make this short amount of time seem a lot longer to the reader, and more devastating for the wife.

Another reason the work failed to wrench my heart strings is that when there was description following a bit of dialogue (what little there was), is how stilted, unnatural, and lackluster it was. All of it was clear-cut and distant with a very dry coating. I didn't feel any of the emotion that the character's dialogue was trying to deliver. You toss out these sorts of lines; "The silence that followed stretched out time to a near standstill" and, "Jenna talked as if she was looking out into some faraway expanse." and then rubberband that distance right back to the present. Those sentences and the depth you're trying to convey in them are utterly destroyed and rendered meaningless when you do that.

I understand this is a short story, and the full of it takes place in a single conversation that probably lasts less than fifteen minutes in real time, but with writing... that's infinity, that is all the damn time in the world because you're the master of the pen. So back up and slow this all down. Go back and inject more content to balance out the dialogue, give some depth to the characters so their emotions can have some resonance. You can do this with very subtle gestures on their part (hell, utilizing the surroundings can often be a very powerful tool where turbulent emotions are concerned); instead of just something like this:

"only broke once the good doctor had summoned enough strength to embrace his wife"
stretch it into at least three sentences. Does he not feel any hesitation, fear, worry, grief at embracing his wife when he's pretty much just shattered her world? And what about the kids? He can throw that money excuse around all he likes, but he's still got to own up to the fact that he's abandoning his family to go traipse around on a boat for the sake of a war.

There's so much drama going on in this, but you've gotta loosen up and let it come out. Read a trashy romance novel or two to get an idea. Because yes, while they're trashy porn, they are very good at showing a writer how to write in an emotional way that will reach the audience.

I actually had to look it up just to be sure, but bespake isn't a word (if it is, then it's severely outdated), and it sounds awkward and out of place with all of the modern word usage. So I'd suggest dumping it unless you intend to timeskip the words and structure within this story so it better fits and does not sound so jarring when read.

And those dashes, dude, those dashes... and ellipses... you abuse them too much. Both of those are to be used sparingly and with GREAT discretion. Dashes are utilized for very immediate, very abrupt breaks in thought, action, or speech. Yes, the characters interrupt each other a lot, but most of that can just be commas. Ellipses are for more subtle breaks, one's that linger on like a bad smell, or ones that can imply a very ominous feeling. They are used even more sparingly than dashes.

Thanks for sharing the work, hopefully my review has assisted you some!
Order and Chaos - Qui Iudicant chapter 1 . 2/20/2013
Whoa, what is this story about? Fantasy or Sic-fi? Anyways, this is really good! (BTW, I'm interested to know about this 'Empire' and what's going on ;) )
nightfuries chapter 1 . 1/12/2013
"Well, it's done: Jenna, I have the money." Dr. Andras Joshù said, as he walked down the stairs into his living room.
- The period after "money" should be a comma. And the comma after "said" is unnecessary

"…You did?" Even though Jenna had forced away her denial away, her words still bespake her disbelief.
- Bespake? Really? Don't think I've ever seen that version of the verb used before, and it's a little weird

"Isn't there anything you can do, Andras?"
- Should be in the paragraph above, otherwise it gets confusing as to who's speaking

"Please, Andras—think of us—think of the children!"
- I don't know if it's because it's really cliche or I just saw something funny recently where "think of the children!" was used, but I giggled at this part :)

...his right shoulder as he opened the door. As he opened the door, the doctor turned around...
- You've repeated that same phrase ('as he opened the door') right next to each other. I'd try and figure out a way not to do that

For this chapter in general (I'm assuming it's a chapter of something and not a oneshot, right?), it was pretty good, though there's not much to go on. Usually, I'm a huge fan of dialogue, but I found there wasn't enough of anything else in this chapter. That's not to say you should take some dialogue out; just put some more stuff in. After all, this is only 696 words. Plus it's nice to see variation in paragraph lengths, and at the beginning they're all less than one line long.

One thing I've noticed in this chapter and your other story as well is you tend to use dashes A LOT. It's not a bad thing per se, but seeing so many of them gets weird, and can also lead to run on sentences. Sometimes you can even just replace them with commas to make things better, or else try and split one sentence into two.

Other than that, I don't really have all that much to say, since there isn't too much to go on here :) Still, good chapter!
Amy B. R. Mead chapter 1 . 1/5/2013
I enjoyed this, and I felt that I should return the favor of your very helpful reviews on Dragon Marked.

["—think of us—think of the children!"] This line seems a bit overly dramatic. I know that you're trying to convey Jenna's desperation, but "Think of the children" is so often used in a humorous context that I have trouble taking it seriously here. I'd suggest something along the lines of "And Andras... your children..." Of course, it is your choice.

I would like to know what class Jenna and Andras are, because they speak very formally, and I don't know if that's intentional.
Krystal Watters chapter 1 . 12/20/2012
I read this before I got your PM, and I personally hate reading somthing without leaving a review.

( A.Y. 1388) - why not use "ca." ?

"—The Empire needs..." - I don't think that's the interrupting party needs the double hyphen. I'm no English major so I could easily be wrong.

Also, your use of semi-colons and ellipsis may be grammatically correct, but too many may be a distraction. I especially think that this is True in the dialogue. Common people don't have the best grammar. And IIMH-nonexpert-O ellipsis in dialogue should be used if someone losses their train of thought completely, not for pauses, etc.

I liked how tender the two seemed, but since this story is presumably more focused on andras, I feel like we shouldn't end with the wife's perspective.
thewhimsicalbard chapter 1 . 12/8/2012
Alright, so it's a month later, but I'm finally reviewing you back.

This is... Well, there's not a whole lot to it, I guess. I will admit that you have the older-man character down pretty well. There's a certain element that you capture very easily, and I like that. It's fun to read your characters.

The fact that this story is all character/dialogue driven was excellent. You don't waste time world-building here. I don't know if it's in the same universe as your Dahrain (sp?) Chronicles, but I don't really care. I don't really care that I know next to nothing about the world. Your summary told me the basics, and that's all I needed to know. This is just well-done. I was interested the whole time, and it's finals week. That's an impressive feat right there.

Now, I do have a few little complaints. The first is that you published this story with less than 700 words. I mean, bro... the best way to sum up this story is, "Well... Good what there was of it!" I mean, how am I supposed to go anywhere on less than 700 words of mostly dialogue? I need more to get me hooked!

Honestly, that might have been my only complaint. There wasn't exactly a lot to pick through here, but I did enjoy it, though I definitely enjoyed it from the perspective of an author as opposed to that of a reader. As a reader, there's just so little true substance here, because you haven't built this very real and emotional opening scene on anything else. I'm not saying it feels fake; there's just nothing else happening to prove that it's real.

The only other problem is that I'm running out of stuff to review for you. I only have one more story left. You need to step up your publishing rate!

-twb
Nmb3l35s S0u1 chapter 1 . 11/13/2012
Great chapter. Near-perfect language, sentence structure and grammar. This plotline is good, grasps the reader quite well. Few hidden typos here and there, easily ignored, but still extremely good. From this, I can tell you're a seasoned writer. The idea of a doctor's journey seems quite stale, but this might show some promise. Make sure that the story doesn't hit a stand-still, like many I had met has done.
Luckycool9 chapter 1 . 11/7/2012
I like how the wife automically beleives he will be on a war ship because it is the only ship most doctors worked on. I also like how the wife cries when he leaves because it proves they have a strong and stable marriage which is easy to forget about.
The Autumn Queen chapter 1 . 9/16/2012
You did mention the meaning of A.Y in one of your other footnotes, but I think you should probably footnote that here too.

["Well, it's done: Jenna, I have the money." Dr. Andras] - "Well, it's done Jenna, I have the money," Dr. Andras... is how you'd write it conventionally. You could perhaps substitute the colon for a comma instead but then there's too many commas in there. Also, since the dialogue consists of two separate clauses of sorts, I think it would work better if you wrote it as "Well, it's Done Jenna," Dr. Andras... "I have the money." It puts a bit more emphasis on the action and result.

I really do like the way you presented your dialogue though. The lack of too many speaker tags and the minimal description really highlights the uprising emotion you've got in there.

Ohana from the Review Marathon (link in profile)
Linguistic chapter 1 . 9/9/2012
I loved it. I'm intrigued. I could feel the tension in the scene. I'm hooked. I thought your portrayal of your protagonist's emotions was very -very- realistic. They were almost real people. It's fantastic. In this story, I saw a perfect blend of storytelling and worldbuilding, without the latter becoming obnoxious and redundant. I was told just enough to get me interested. Are you going to write a second chapter?

I'm only slightly bothered by (in my opinion) the complexity of some of the sentences in this, but that's your own style, so I won't berate you on that account.

Well done!
J.D. Vincent chapter 1 . 8/27/2012
I like where this is going... love the writing style, and the dialogue seems realistic, which is always tricky to do. I'd love to see an update!