|Reviews for Romantic Dreams|
| Victoria Best chapter 1 . 1/26/2016
I really enjoyed this. I liked your other pieces also, but they weren't something I would pick up in a shop (personal taste). This, however, is. I love the idea of the girl being able to travel, and you introduced that part perfectly - I didn't see it coming after her dad explains that she never goes anywhere. Cleverly done :)
The dialogue was great. I could clearly 'hear' the characters talking, and I thought this was interesting that Claudia tried to get Dante to text her, and even more interesting when it seems, at the end, like he is considering it. Both scenes that I didn't expect to see, so again, great job with the plot and the way you went about the twists.
"Laid upon her bed." This sounded a little too formal compared to the rest of the piece, as did the word "seemingly." In the rest of the story you write very 'normal,' so I am not sure why the beginning was so formal.
I love the descriptions of her traveling. Very vivid and thrilling. Those were definitely the highlight of the piece, particularly her looking through the window as a cat at the very end, and then running off. That had a chilling quality to it (her watching him) but also a sort of calming one to it - here, Claudia was clearly reaching a closure. An unusual but effective combination.
I also liked the descriptions you gave us of what Asia looks like when she is possessed, with the line, "like half is missing." This was great writing because, through Dantes eyes and words, you slotted in another important part of the scene - a description of what someone looks like in this "possession."
My two favourite lines have to be, "Fragmented, insect pod eyes," and, "Drifted with feather-like motion." I also liked the line about the heart fluttering like a caged animal. All wonderful pieces of writing! You certainly have talent! :)
I loved the complexity of the characters. All of them had their layers, especially Claudia, and I still have mixed opinions about her. She comes across as a little psychotic when she threatens Asia, but I also understand she is a vulnerable, broken character and is certainly very lonely. At the end, I got the feeling that all three had taken something away from the experience.
"Legs for days." This is a cliche line. Could you think of a more original way to describe this?
"As flawless as the surface of an egg." This is the same line you use in Vampyre. Try not to do this - it's good to challenge yourself and to make every piece completely original.
"Damn I'm tweaking" should be "Damn, I'm tweaking,"
"Shut up about prom" should be "shut about prom."
"Couldn't even began to" should be "couldn't even begin to."
Lots of commas missing after names also, like "Lord,"
My main issue was that I was skeptical that Asia didn't fight harder. She can clearly talk through the 'possession' but she doesn't make much of an effort. I would be shouting my mouth off, absolutely refusing to go, and I think she would spend most of the night telling Dante that she is feeling ill and just wants to go home, not just once. I was skeptical that she just seems to accept it and keeps her mouth shut. I know that Claudia threatens her, but I think she would have to threaten her a few times before Asia gave in, not just once, possibly even proving to her that she is serious about the threat (maybe starting to walk her outside, as though she is taking her to the "lonely hoods").
Also, can Asia move during her possession? This wasn't really explained, but I think it's an important feature. She hits Dante, which makes me think that she can. So why doesn't she try to move to get out of the situation, for example getting away from Dante to avoid having to talk to him, maybe even locking herself in the bathroom either at home or at the prom, etc? Maybe get rid of the part where she hits Dante to show that she cannot move during her possession, otherwise this leads to the questions I have mentioned.
Otherwise, this was a solid read and totally my taste. I would love to read more of this. Do you think you will ever extend it or will it stay as a one-shot? Thanks for the read and keep writing!
| m. b. whitlock chapter 1 . 11/10/2014
What a fun read! Very enjoyable. :)
There's a cool freaky edge to this fairytale-like story. I think by the end of the piece all three main characters Claudia, Asia and Dante have all learned things about themselves. I really like the mechanism of Claudia's mysterious 'traveling' ability. Great concept to have her inhabit other lifeforms/consciousnesses, and very cool to have all these 'possessions' culminate in Claudia taking control of a human, Asia, for the first time. Having the prom be the motivation for this maiden voyage is terrific I think.
Here are my notes:
I like the opening a lot:
""Lord I ain't never seen nothing like this before in my life," he said. "All that gal do is just go to school, come home, eat, and sleep, what good does she do?""
The dialogue between Pops and Nana works well. I can totally hear their voices in my head reading this.
""School years almost over and it's her prom night! She should be out enjoying herself, 'stead she sleep!""
I like how this sets up so many questions while revealing a lot about Claudia at the same time. :)
Like this part as well:
"Pops and Nana made their way downstairs, leaving Claudia alone, alone to do what she did best.
This is cool because 'travel' is close to the last thing I expected to read after "what she did best", since Pops has explained Claudia never goes anywhere. Great!
Nice, poetic action scenes/descriptions here:
"She soared in crows darker than shadows, passed through trees and lived in blossoms, showering away in petals with the breeze."
"Claudia rested on the gutter above the girl*'*s head and watched her through fragmented, insectoid eyes."
This whole paragraph describing how Claudia sees Asia is wonderful. Tiny fix, you are missing an *'*. ;)
Seems like fate when the first words we get from Asia are her dissing other girls. She may be beautiful but she does not appear to have a pretty heart:
""Oh my God yes that bitch is ratchet! Nope, nope I'm the Queen tonight, all them other hoes can bow down boo, they gonna be lookin' faded as hell next to muah!""
Asia's mother seems as bad as her daughter (worse actually, since she's the parent):
""I don't know what the hell has gotten into you but you cut this mess out right now! You-are-NOT wasting our money over your drama so you get your ass down them stairs and stop keeping that boy waiting! I ain't playing with you!""
She doesn't appear concerned that her daughter is in distress. She doesn't even ask why Asia is acting the way she is. If her mother has always been this insensitive it explains why Asia is so callous and cruel towards other kids.
Very cool turn of events here:
""And that ain't you?" Dante asked surprised.
Asia shook her head. "Nope, but I know who is." She rummaged in her small purse and pulled out a pen and scrap of paper.""
I like the ending. It is not what I expected and it works very well thematically.
| Longe chapter 1 . 6/30/2014
Review Game- Easy Fix
Try to use commas and apostrophes more- it will make your writing look more professional that way.
Ex. granddaughter's, "Lord, I ain't never...", "...big brain of her's..."
Your story reminds me of Ray Bradbury's The April Witch. Not sure if that's a coincidence, but this is heavily similar in concept and plot.
This was very humorous overall and it matched the pace well. The way she talked to Asia was interesting and granted insight to how she was treated by the girl in the past.
| NicoleLee chapter 1 . 6/27/2014
What I liked.. well you're a BEAUTIFUL writer. I can tell you've been at this a while! The idea for the story was also extremely original. The main character was very likable, and the ability to go into the mind of others fit her perfectly. The interactions between her and Asia seemed believable. I especially liked the rambling and eventual vomiting towards the end. Idk if that's a weird thing to like but it made the scene realistic. Your flow/pace was amazing, it made the story easy to follow and almost dream-like (which maybe you were aiming for).
What I didn't like... besides the main character, the other characters were sort of a cliche. With the evil, beautiful high school girl and the horny jock. BUT you gave the male character some realism towards the end when you mentioned him holding onto the paper. I thought that was a sweet touch and a good way to end the story.
All in all, the story was beautiful and I'm so glad I got the chance to read it.
| SenatorBlitz chapter 1 . 6/18/2014
review game easy fix!
this was a strange story for me. usually i love a story because i love the characters. in this story, i loved no one. i don't think i even really liked anyone. the grandfather was woefully judgmental. claudia, while a victim of asia, did not seem like much of a class act herself. she phrased her take over as a revenge for asia's terrible behavior, but that seems like a front for the fact that she just wants asia's life. im hard pressed to think she'd be any different than asia. asia herself is vapid as rubbing alcohol and dante, is a piece of meat. so really, none of the characters endeared themselves to me. however, while the characters weren't ultimately loveable, the actual story and its story telling /were/. i really liked the way that spring was described here and the air that she was experiencing and the freedom she felt in a way only she could. i also thought that the fresh way you chose to incorporate the fantasy elements to this story, without specifically calling them out was brilliant. i dont know if she is a shape shifter or a ghost or a...whatever she is, but the way you've written it, it isn't incredibly important to label what she is. only what she /does/ is important. the tension you built between claudia and asia was interesting as well. like other readers, i was also curious as to why she would have ever talked to asia, if she were able to control her without it? it is almost as if she /wanted/ asia to know that she was being controlled and wanted her to feel what it was like to have no control - it's a bit sadistic if you think about it. to bend someone's will and make them watch. granted, im sure asia would have freaked out anyway (what with her body doing whatever it pleased), but it would have definitely been different. the ending of the story was also well done. i think you really let your creative pen fly, drawing out her journey through the many eyes of the animals of the night. i think my inner reading voice /actually/ read this quieter to match these stealthy animals. i do think the ending is a bit vague, but not in a bad way. in a "we're not sure exactly what happened way". we could probably assume that dante with his phone in his hand and a crumpled piece of paper was him calling claudia (who he hasnt talked to for so long he's lost her number) and being frustrated by the fact that she wasn't home and going to sleep (oh the irony). or...we could be as realistic as everything else in this story and think it had nothing at all to do with claudia, but she's going to choose to interpret it as if it did.
all in all, i enjoyed myself once more with a tale from you! kudos!
| handna95 chapter 1 . 6/16/2014
I love your use of the word ratchet haha. Expertly used to describe modern teenage dialogue. Your dialogue was very engaging, and I did appreciate how modern and unhindered it was, if that makes sense. When the characters spoke, it reminded me very easily of how my friends and I would communicate with each other - it was relatable.
I also liked the concept of a girl being able to flat into other living creatures. You didn't give a clear explanation as to how she could possess other people, but the way you wrote this, I don't think you need to. It seemed like a natural progression of events for Claudia. Her grandparents also made me chuckle. "She needs a man!" That was golden.
| The Smile Machine chapter 1 . 6/15/2014
I think you set the tone really well in the beginning. The coarse way that Pops and Nana speak is a huge contrast with the imaginary world that Claudia builds. Remember when you're using such words as "said" or "thought," they should be preceded by a comma, and not capitalized. That being said, I don't know about the casual disrespect between the parents and children. It doesn't seem natural to me, and especially with Asia, I don't see how her being a jerk to everyone makes her endearing. Interesting read!
| The Autumn Queen chapter 1 . 3/13/2014
It's rather endearing to begin with the grandfather looking into his granddaughter's room. It makes for a nice soft beginning. You change to focus on Claudia though, something a little misleading with the initial focus on the grandfather. I think that qualifies as a subject change and should have a new paragraph. Maybe explore the grandfather looking at his granddaughter from the grandfather's perspective, or make it sound more like his perspective than her's.
You also have a lot of grammer mistakes littered around, eg. "granddaughters" implies plural but you only mention one granddaughter, so maybe you meant "grandddaughter's" ie. belonging to the singular grandaughter. And ... ." Explained Nana should be "... ," explained Nana. You've done that quite a few places.
"...under the stars, above a building, a street lamp, a pond flew Claudia Trujillo" - the "flew Claudia Trujillo" sounds a little strange here. The idea of metaphorical travel instead of physical travel is lovely though, lovely and unexpected too. It's a little hard to tell whether she has left her bed or not, particularly with things like stretching implying she has, but no mention of her actually leaving her room implying she hasn't.
I love the [she was hers] comment. It contrasts with the rest of the two paragraphs that frame her very nicely. I do wish though that this was a longer piece so that we could have seen some of that instead of a big block of text, but as a oneshot I think it works relatively well. It is a little blockish still, compared to the other paragraphs (the one that starts with Claudia opened her eyes).
The possession-effect is an interesting one, though it did take a bit to clear up exactly what Claudia had been doing. But Claudia's personality really seems to change here; she might be freer than she was before, she might be hungry for revenge, but it still seems a little overdramatic.
The scene at the prompt was an interesting one: it's like the guy doesn't see Asia or Claudia but something that's the combination of them, which is what the combination really is. Makes for an interesting romance story; usually I see one or the other develop. It disappears after a bit though, which is a shame, but probably my personal preferences. :D I think it would have worked better if Dante was a little deeper as a character though.
The way Claudia scurries away like a rabbit is interesting, but not really an ending that implies closure I think. After a three way relationship issue like that, I would have expected Claudia that had more parting thoughts than that.
| Domus Vocis chapter 1 . 3/4/2014
I need to tell you first that I'm not attacking, but giving you advice. First off, I like this story, both the premise and the choice of words. It really fits the tons of the story and the drama. I especially like how Claudia and Asia work off each other.
However, I wish you gave some more depth on Claudia; give her a legit reason to ruin Asia's night. Reading this made her sound like a jerk and it makes it distracting. I'd give them a backstory that holds up an gives her a justifiable reason to be so cruel to Asia. It'll make her more interesting.
But that's just nitpicking; I'm trying to find problems. Otherwise, this is a very good story! :)
| Whirlymerle chapter 1 . 1/12/2014
Review game review!
I like how you portray Claudia’s jealousy of Asia as she’s introduced. It’s all pretty superficial, but I think it’s realistic to show that it’s normal to be bothered by superficial things, and in the end, when Dante calls Claudia the fat bitch with the overbite, I thought that was a good show of how much these things matter.
I like how there’s an air of unpredictability to this story. I was really afraid that Claudia was going to do something terrible when she threatens Asia, but I’m glad that in the end, she only made Asia go to prom with the guy she liked.
| cybersheep chapter 1 . 12/23/2013
Baha, I found it a little weird that the granddad notices his granddaughter’s ‘hefty bosom’ – or um at least describes it that way. But ha, I won’t judge… They ‘layed upon her bed’ line was a little off though, I think should just be ‘lay’? Or ‘laid’. Also, you’re missing an apostrophe with ‘granddaughters’.
A few of your dialogue tags are new sentences when they shouldn’t be – e.g. ‘beside her.” Pops grumbled’ should be ‘beside her,” Pops grumbled’.
I love the idea of this, the way that Claudia lives. And the darker side to it to – her jealous voyeurism into some other girl’s prom night. That line about the lonely hoods *shudder*. And I do always appreciate getting in the POV of someone like Claudia – someone you don’t necessarily sympathise with. I always find that much more interesting :).
‘so your going to go’ – typo – you’re, not your.
I think a little more explanation as to why Claudia decides to try to communicate with Asia would be nice – only because she seems to at least have some experience in possessing humans, and it causes her a lot of aggro. Simple curiosity doesn’t seem like it would necessarily be enough.
‘the soap creamed over her smooth porcelain like shoulders and the flesh of her warm breast bobbed’ – I think I got confused a little here. Asia’s black, right (elsewhere it says she has mahogany skin?) but the porcelain thing automatically drums up super pale. And I think the breast should be breasts as you’re describing her boobs, as opposed to the general area :p.
One thing – why does Claudia need to threaten Asia with that ‘trip’ at all? Surely, if she can make her take it, she can just make Asia shut up and go to prom too? And the fact that she’s not doing that…wouldn’t Asia notice and challenge her?
‘ain’t that that fat bitch with the overbite’ – ahhh, what a catch he is. Asia’s better off rid of him. And him and Claudia sort of deserve each other.
This was really interesting! Thanks for writing! :D
| deadaccount2019 chapter 1 . 12/23/2013
Although the dialogue tags could use some work, the dialogue itself was very enjoyable. There's a lot of character and accent in it, without having to deviate to misspellings, which I really appreciate. Also, lovely imagery throughout.
I love the build up of tension throughout the story. Wanting Claudia to have her moment, worrying what would become of Asia, and fear of Claudia going too far all came together to make a sort of perfect storm. At one point I wondered if one of the creatures Claudia ended up in would be killed, and in turn her as well, playing into a bit of a karma twist.
I think the only thing that really bothered me was the end. Somehow it didn't seem as fleshed out as the rest, which left it feeling a bit dead-endish and lacking closure.
Overall, though, it was an enjoyable read. :)
| Jalux chapter 1 . 12/22/2013
The characterization here is excellent, in particular I enjoy Claudia's character, it feels strangely refreshing and original, she seems like a strong character that's a bit of an anti-hero. I do think you need to check over some of your grammar, as other reviewers have mentioned there are some minor punctuation errors and typos. Dialogue was fairly solid too, I think it can be improved a bit more to make it feel just a bit more natural but as a whole it's not bad at all. Good short read.
| lookingwest chapter 1 . 12/15/2013
"granddaughter's room" (with an apostrophe s)
There are a lot of mis-punctuation moments going on with your dialogue in this story, especially regarding places where there should be commas, or commas instead of periods, or un-capitalization of speaker tags. I think treating the "Thought Claudia" sentences as actually part of the "speaker tag" of her thought, it might also smooth out some flow in your writing. So instead just put a comma and un-capitalize the "T's". Hope that make sense. I'm always for well punctuated grammar regarding dialogue just because it tends to smooth things out flow-wise while reading.
Anyway - I liked the humorous bits of this piece. There were some good moments, especially when Claudia first "possesses" Asia. The exaggeration and over-the-tope dialogue at times worked well to convey a unique tone for this piece, almost satirical.
I also liked the description of the Springtime right before Claudia possesses Asia's body - there were some great descriptions there regarding the setting and a good use of figurative language to describe the characters, like "legs for days" which I actually haven't heard before but has a cool ring to it, haha. The setting of having it be in Springtime also gives it sort of this crazed feeling associated with well, mating - or being a live, at least, new growth. So that had a great added backdrop for the events and also framed well for you in the last paragraph/last few words.
The unfolding events with Dante were paced really well, and really sped up when the dialogue started playing between the two of them. The content of the dialogue was well fitted to suit their characterizations and the depth you've provided, though like I mentioned, felt a little stilted because of the frequent grammar oversights. That being said, overall I enjoyed this - it's very funky and unique, especially regarding Claudia's "powers" and her perspective on things. Well done!
| Jitterbug Blues chapter 1 . 12/15/2013
This was interesting and oddly fun - oddly so because I don't I have ever read a piece as animated as this before? I admit I wasn't sure about the tone of this story at first; it comes across as satirical, magical and even strange at times - a weird mix of fantasy and screwball comedy (the vulgar language, the exaggerated characters... ). But I enjoyed it - your prose is rich and visual, and I liked the powers of the girl.
I am just not sure about the tone XD - but I was entertained nevertheless? Hmm, for improvement: some minor errors could be ironed out and some of the writing tightened. Still: I really like your visuals, especially when you describe how the girl travels.