|Reviews for Before the Stardust|
| Os chapter 10 . 8/10/2017
This chapter was a roller coaster and I realized about partway through that I had no idea how long this story was meant to be or if killing off characters is your style as a writer or not and got very very worried for the crew, especially Rob and Eli.
I also took notes this read through so I could remember what I wanted to comment about!
First up, the clocks were a really interesting way to set the scene and the chapter. Their presence on board the ship to track subjective time was a nice little worldbuilding bit and the way they were tied into the rest of the chapter was pretty cool. Nice work.
As for Raisins, they suck. Same, Eli, same.
The point of origin talk and miscalculation is A) a great way to get lost and end up on mystery world or the vast emptiness of space and B) makes me think that they'd have some kind of system in place to track that kind of stuff and keep that specific mistake from happening, especially since they would need to input new coordinates every time they calculate a flight path. Aka, Super easy mistake to make with really deadly consequences, I feel like they'd have safety protocols for that kind of stuff. (This is more just world building stuff because of course that's the kind of thought tangent my brain takes, it was a very good mistake narratively speaking. I just have a thing for world building.)
ALSO AN ALIEN CIVILIZATION anD IT WAS AL BASICALLY RELEGATE TO SUMMARY EXPLANATION About what happened. I realize in the context of this chapter that it's a side bit of information and it's likely to be covered in more detail later, but gosh darn I would have loved to have half a chapter or a whole one just to them trekking through the alien planet and discovering that cave and then eli showing that cave to the others and gettting to see their reactions, and then their search for other signs of life nad then them telling others about it and the scientists all gtting to the planet. Like, This is A HUGE THING and I feel it deserved way more attention than it got and I really hope we get to hear more about it in the next chapter. (THis is also a great place to illustrate the show don't tell rule. becuase everything was told and man this needs to be fat and juicy show text where we get to see everyone's reactions to everything because gosh the crew's reactions to all this I am sad I missed them.)
(Also, hey, parallel parking is totally something to get excited about when you have zero sense of spacial awareness and are still required to parallel park because that's the only kind of parking you have and having to ask other people to park your car for you earns you a lot bullying, but being able to park the car then is super exciting!)
I know you said they were DNA based (or dna ish) but I wonder how discovering life that obviously gets to qualify as life but doesn't have DNA would affect our understanding and definition on what constitutes a living organism. Like how viruses occupy that weird "technically you're not living because RNA but otherwise yes"
AND THEN THE TIME STOP THING. O. M. G. I'm glad that you gave us explanations on how it was happening and then how they were still moving and all of that because as soon as I decided I was going to have to ask, the questions were answered so those were done in a very good way. But holy shit, the part where they realized they were going to die and everyone got philosophical and sentimental, wow, that got emotional.
I really like how you handled Sally there. Also, the whole "this kind of stuff really makes you realize what you care about most, GOSH I JUST LOVE OWLS" line had me going "I'm eli" and then when he said he wasn't gonna say I love you back. roflmao. I'm just dead. The entire anniversary thing and exchange between them was cute. like who the fuck celebrates a two month anniversary? hopeless sappy romantic rob is who. I'm glad Eli has him, they're good for each other.
Also, just all the little details you got to sprinkle throughout the chapter, like the thing Rob was working on in the beginning, then he mentions the hot water still works, then they get to blow up the thing.
Also, Sally Cheats At Cards. I'm of two minds about this, the first is yeah, that's reallyy the only explanation, the other is that I'm a huge fan of characters being supernaturally good at cards for not obvious reason. Kind of a peek behind the curtain. Although maybe I'll just headcanon her as so good at cards she started cheating as a way to make it MORE interesting for her since cheating means she has to try.
And lol. Everyone remembers the commercial jingles. The universal constant. I love seeing that pop up in fiction.
aeirhgjrussjsfkuj this was just a great chapter. well done. I can't wait to see what the fallout from their discovery is and everything they missed over their journey through time.
| Os chapter 9 . 5/28/2017
A monster/alien horror plotline with accurate science? That was amazing.
Also Rose's line about having discovered and defeating it and so getting to name it was great.
| Eclectic chapter 9 . 4/25/2017
Go Rose! I'm glad we've seemed to focus on every crew member. The story with her ice skating was cute.
In other news,
I WAS RIGHT!
I've been waiting since the begining for Rob and Eli to kiss. It was perfect and I love it and I can't wait for the next chapter!
| Eclectic chapter 8 . 1/4/2017
Agh, this was such a good chapter! The job issue with Jemini seemed to be resolved pretty quickly but worse things have been done in professional work. It was still a great chapter. I loved her parents. And Rob at the end was fantastic but he's always a gem.
| Os chapter 8 . 1/1/2017
Water does too totally have a taste and most of it sucks. (Although unlike Eli I can't stand the taste of bottled water, it tastes like plastic. Yuck.) Also I can hear dog whistles. It's totally a thing.
The bit about Jemini and her family was nice and her moms having opposite reactions. Classic. Although I feel like the tension there was lacking. There wasn't any time to worry about her being stuck on Mars before they had the Curiosity solution. (Although there is a general lack of tension in the writing itself since it reads at a clipped pace and is mostly tell rather than show.)
Rob telling the others to say no to going to the planetarium was hilarious and I actually laughed at that part. The rest of the relationship talk for everyone in the chapter was mostly just me being too aroace and wondering why they're even talking about it. (But then Oh right people do that.)
Also "It's almost like we are programmed to adore the night sky." and "Maybe we are all hopelessly in love with the stars." THOSE LINES. I AM IN LOVE WITH THOSE LINES. They gave me chills and I just yes so much yes.
| Os chapter 7 . 12/11/2016
Ok I am now 100% certain Rob has a thing for Eli and that Eli is definitely not noticing it, and that Eli may or may not have something, but that the story is definitely going in the direction where they're gonna end up as a couple. ALSO Eli's mom is Aro! I thought she might be based on a comment in the last chapter but I wasn't sure and this one has convinced me she is. Yessss.
Also, wow. I am so loving the amount of character development that Rob's gone through over the course of this story. He's come a really long way and I can't wait to see how far he'll go.
Not gonna lie though, was slightly disappointed Rob didn't try to adopt Angelo (because I didn't even consider he had family that would want to take him in, and I thought that after he mentioned his mom, that she wouldn't be there or something and he'd be left alone.)
Worried about Sally though. Sounds like something's up with her that isn't good. Hopefully that'll be resolved though like everything else has been and it'll be better in the end.
| Os chapter 6 . 12/11/2016
It was nice getting to see Earth and Eli's childhood home and his family. Also I'm like now 75% sure Rob's got a crush or something on Eli and that other people have started to notice?
The talk about green beans being the protein source though kind of confused me. Generally those are a vegetable vegetable and not really used as a protein source. Other kinds of beans and legumes are. Although given that it's a made up species, I don't really see why they couldn't have modified the green bean to be a good source of protein. ... That would actually be super awesome. I can't stand the taste and texture of bean beans, but green beans are good.
| Os chapter 5 . 12/10/2016
And the plot thickens. Shifty government conspiracies are shifty.
But alien life! Multicellular alien life. That's exciting, Also an underwater forest. It's a shame they didn't explore under the ocean, that would have been really cool. But there was some really nice character interactions and insights so at least not everything went unexplored.
These chapters are really long though and the focus is killing my eyes.
| Os chapter 4 . 12/10/2016
I've been thinking that I might have been noticing that there might be something shippy between Eli and Rob. Or at least on Rob's side? And this chapter is making me think that yes, I am in fact noticing something. Maybe? It's nice to see Rob becoming nicer and less of a jerk, it's good character development and I hope it continues.
(Also I think I've gotten the main cast squared in my head in terms of who's who and can now know who is being talked about when there's a name attached! The first chapter was especially confusing because I had trouble keeping track of the characters and they were introduced so quickly.)
| Os chapter 3 . 12/10/2016
Love the focus on Sally in this chapter and the revelation and subsequent mission to erase her from the system. I was scared that something was going to go wrong and someone was going to get caught or get in trouble, but woo nobody did and it went off splendidly! Jemini's calling as a secretary was adorable! Also it sounds like the kittens managed to get that yarn ball untangled.
| Guest chapter 2 . 12/10/2016
I'm actually starting to like Rob quite a bit after all this. He's learning~
That said, Jody and Steve are on my internal list of jerks. They should definitely have been WAY more careful with their friends.
I noticed a couple of cases of spellchecker-misfire in this chapter, like using "you" instead of "your" because the former word is still a /word,/ but the grammar is off. Also, English tends to use the quotation marks above to indicate dialogue, where British English specifically uses single inverted commas (') for the same thing. I spend half of the first chapter convinced that your characters were all speaking in sign language, which does not have a defined notation, solely because you're using hyphens (-) as dialogue markers. I've also seen telepathy marked the same way.
Nonetheless, I hope you continue to work on this and continue experimenting with your story-writing prowess. You're doing well aside from the punctuation confusion there.
| Os chapter 2 . 12/10/2016
OWLS! When those got mentioned as number one that was super excited and made me flap happy.
Also that spider in the hair. I would be a crying mess if that happened. Just reading that make my heart pound and made me need to stim. Spiders stuck in your hair and you can't get it out. Shuddders.
The - this- for the dialogue thing is still throwing me off, but I've adjusted enough to follow it, although using them as dashes in sentences to signal connecting thoughts rather than dialogue is making it ? confusing again. And the grammar either improved or I just got used to it, so it's still noticeable, but I don't trip over it enough that it impairs my ability to read and enjoy the story.
The writing though is much more fleshed out and has less floating head syndrome so it was easier to follow. Although I think more interaction between the crew of the mcs and the crew of the other ship (steve and jody?) to allow the reader to get an idea of who they are and the dynamic between them and eli's crew before getting left on the planet could make it something that the reader could form their own opinion on (whether they were left intentionally or by accident).
An excited little spaceship. : I now feel bad for it and the robot on the other planet. I just wanna hug them both and see them happy.
| Os chapter 1 . 12/10/2016
The grammar problems and lack of descriptions combined with the use of - this - for dialogue make it kind of difficult to process, but I think I'm catching on and the next chapter will be easier.
Although I'm not entirely sure what's going on, I think I'm feeling bad for the little beacon in the dust cloud. Also I was hoping there was someone using that little q&a bot to talk through. I got really excited thinking that aliens were communicating that way.
| Eclectic chapter 7 . 11/6/2016
Aaahh, that was such a good chapter! I love it.
-Yes, baby, just a little bit deeper...Rob paused and laughed... I'd like to say that to a person.
-...I have a thing that looks similar enough, and some heat-resistant glue.
Too bad not everything can be fixed with some glue.
Rob is hilarious, I love him. The opening was super cute to.
Oh my god, I almost cried with Rob and Eli talking after Rob showed the crew the video of Angelo.
I'm glad other people see Eli's sort of crush on Rob.
-I don't remember giving you the role of creepy old man who throws menacing hints at the protagonist.
Silly Eli, Rob is madly crushing on you.
-What the hell?!...You were supposed to distract him, not punch him in the face!
-Doesn't the silent nod mean 'knock them out' in burglar code?
-I don't know, I'm not a burglar.
-Well neither am I.
And at the end, Rob giving those people all the food was very nice of him. He is probably my favorite character.
| Eclectic chapter 6 . 8/26/2016
Another amazing chapter. Great job.
-That is a great idea, actually. - Eli said, typing something on his tablet. Rob crossed his arms on his chest. - You're surprised, and I'm offended.
Rob is hilarious.