Alexander Skel

So long as one person enjoys the story I tell, I am happy.

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"I don't want to know you"

I fell in love with this piece right off the second line and I only continued to enjoy it. I admittedly don't read a lot of poetry or romance stories, but I do often think that many people don't fall in love for a person, a least not at first, but rather the person they create in their mind. You encapsulated that well in your writing.

The poem is sad, but doesn't feel so overly dramatic. I enjoy that it reads like a one sided conversation.

Good work.

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An emtional ride

You did something that I feel a lot of people are hesitant to do when you created rather rude and immature behavior from both sides. Joey’s friends enjoy their gay bashing on one side, and Freddie’s friends seem to enjoy making fun of them in turn.

Obviously one side is worse than the other, but a lot of times you end up only seeing one side acting like this so it creates clearly divided lines of right and wrong, and while that can be satisfying for the reader, it is less realistic and can take away from the story. So good job!

You also did a god job of establishing Freddie as a likable and sympathetic character early on. Even more so with the reveal about his father (first one) and then the later reveal about how his father feels about him, which was pretty much a gut punch. For first person narratives that is really needed to keep the reader engaged.

On the flip side with Joey you made him relatable in a way. He’s a person who makes stupid mistakes. He’s scared to go against the grain, even if what is happening feels wrong and uncomfortable. I think everyone has felt that way at least once before.

I really liked the parallel with the father issue and when they refer to each other as ‘first name’ fucking ‘last name’ during their narration.

As for what could be improved.

I think once or twice the perspective might have changed without being marked as so, I remember being confused in one of the early chapters.

The chapters that have multiple perspective changes sometimes feel like they could warrant their own chapters, but honestly that is a personal thing and I think it could work either way.

A few typos here and there, like a ‘fact’ when you meant to put face. I’m not all that great at grammar and spelling either, but with a few rounds of editing or maybe I beta I’m sure you could get most of it.

I really liked the line. “He was a coward and she was strong. And they had made me and I was lukewarm.” Especially in light of the conversation he later had with his mother. “


Sorry this got a little rambly. Romance is far from my usual area of reading, but this was worth the time. You left this on a heart breaking note, but there is hope there, I think.


Good work all around.

Also shout-out to cyanide and Happiness woot!

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That was an interesting read.

It had quite a bit of flair and you seem to really like using lots of similes and metaphors. Because of that it reads almost more stream of consciously than anything else. A very visual pieces so it feels more like a scene in a movie.

Now some issues I had with it. Even though I understand that the song lyrics are important to the piece, I found them kind of jarring and when they came in they kind of took me out of the scene for a moment. Maybe see how it reads with the entire song written out before story, or a bit in the beginning and a bit at the end.

The perspective change near the end also threw me a bit, when it changed from the man, to the woman, back to the man.

Some grammar mistakes here and there, but nothing that made it unreadable.

Overall a good start to what seems to be a creepy and mysterious story.

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Strong opening. Good Action Desciption

I do not know much about the Musketeers, but this was a great opening chapter in its own right.

The way you blended d’Artagnan watching Athos and Athos’ own movement was excellent. It’s no easy feat to have an action scene that is being described by a character that is watching it and keep it from being nothing more than a list. The writing was very fluid and much like Athos’ sword, it flowed gracefully from one area to the next.

I also really appreciated the parallel between d’Artagnan so closely watching Athos and in turn having Athos watch d’Artagnan. It created a good sense of a developing kinship between the two that they take the time to notice each other in such a way.

You keep a good balance between describing the scene and not overworking with details.

Excellent work and I wish you the best of luck with your further writing!

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I don’t know much about Stargate

I don’t know much about Stargate, but the plot seems interesting. Lots of mystery and tension, which leaves me wondering where the story is going and what is going to happen. I felt a bit lost at times, but I’m sure it would help a lot if I knew the characters.

Onto what you could work on.

Maybe put a page break between the “ongoing flight to Colorado” and “A tall athletic blonde walked into Poor Richard’s.” It’s a bit of a jarring change. Same with the second chapter with “asleep in moments.” and “Walter never missed much.”

Dialogue is pretty good, but some is a bit awkward. Reading it a loud may help.

A couple of grammatical errors, as well. You could probably catch them with a few read throughs.”

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Well done!

I was slightly wary when I first opened this story because I saw how long it was, yet only one chapter, but you did an excellent job. I found the pacing to be easy enough to follow along and brisk enough not to get boring. Your strengths really seem to be in your understanding of the characters and it shows in the dialogue.

For me, the biggest factor that decides if I like a story is how well the story and scenes flow together and this story came together extremely well in my opinion.

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Very interesting!

It's rare to see a horror or thriller type story where the protagonist is the one calling the shots or doing the killing. That's a very interesting route to take and it looks to be very compelling, especially with the people Max is hunting.

The opening scenes are a little hard to follow because there are no name used, but beyond that I found it to be a very good read.

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A good start

The opening is pretty graphic, which is just what you need if you are going for a horror style. It sets the tone well and will keep readers who are interested in this type of story. I think you should try to make the rest of the chapter match that level of interest and intensity. This opening is good in that it gives the reader questions that are left unanswered but with the promise of information later. That said, it is also feels rather sparse. I would suggest expanding and adding some more description. Like I said, match the intensity of the opening lines.

Also, I would think about restructuring the chapter grammatically. The way you've written the dialogue (not breaking it into new paragraphs with each new speaker) makes it hard to follow.

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A game of life and death with a twist.

That summary makes it look like some kind of manic pixie dream girl story but instead it turns into so much more.

Lots of imagery again, but for the opening part it works very well. Gives a feel of a epic fantasy story. Be a bit more careful when you transition back to the real world though. Every now and then is fine, but doing two in a row in the same paragraph can end up being more distracting rather than adding to the setting. You’re good at them though, so removing a few wouldn’t be a problem in my opinion. You don't want to create an overload with the similes and metaphors.

In chapter one I honestly got a bit confused after the line “he just took it.” Suddenly we have Zed speaking when before we only had TJ and the neighbor. I’m not sure if I am just misreading it, if a line is missing, or it’s supposed to be a scene change?

Be away of how many times you say “As if” Everyone has a phrase they overuse and that might just be yours.


As I read through this, am I right to assume this is somewhat of a parody. Or at least an extreme self-aware exaggeration? What with the amount of violence and the reactions of the characters. To be a bit of a nerd, it actually gives me somewhat of a ‘highschool of the dead’ vibe.

Also with this amount of gore you might want to consider changing the rating to 18+.

Oh, and the pop culture references might be a problem in the future. Currently they work, because they are relevant, but as time passes they might not all age well. It adds a sense of realism to the character dialogue, but just something to consider.

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tongue in cheek opening

Opening works because it’s fairy tongue in cheek and self references the fact that it is an info dump. That said, it is an info dump and a lot of that might be lost on the reader and even off putting to some. The fact that it’s a bit comedic might divide your readership a bit, but I personally am a fan.

The pacing of the first few chapters is a bit slow but the action quickly picks up. I would work on strengthening them. Your prologue sets a tone that the opening few chapters don’t seem to match.

Since this does have a fair bit of action in it I would recommend giving more detail to that. In the end battle with the Empress is a good start but I’m sure you can make it even better with a bit of work.

Some things to work on.

A little too much description when introducing characters. Information is good, but find a way to present it more organically than just outright stating it every time.

Sometimes you switched between the present and the past tense.


At times the dialogue is a bit awkward and unnatural sounding. I wouldn’t put everything the empress says in uppercase, just using an exclamation point would be enough. Also try speaking it out loud to make sure it sounds realistic. On that note, some of your dialogue is improperly punctuated. It’s something I have a lot of trouble with as well. Lots of guides online to help. A few read through and you can probably find all of them and fix that. Getting another person to help beta might be helpful as well.

I believe there is potential here and you have an interesting premise. Good luck!

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melancholy

That's some pretty sad subject matter you are working with. The pacing was a bit hurried and the writing is awkward at times, but I get the gist of what you are going for and I'm sure you could easily clean it up to make it a lot better in the future.

I do see what you are trying to do, though. There is an emotional impact there, it's just currently lessened because the story doesn't flow as well as it could.

If you ever update it and want me to read it again let me know.

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Sorry for the wait

I really liked the unrelenting bureaucracy shown at Rebecca’s work, it gives off a good sense of frustration for Rebecca that translates well to the reader. The line about “when you start questioning that things fall apart” also gave a good sense of foreboding and set a tone for how the city functions.

Rebecca’s reaction to Jason, and what happened to him, was genuine, and his lead in to explaining the controllers didn’t feel like forced exposition, considering it is supposed to be common knowledge. The fact that she feels guilty but doesn't go too far out of her way for a person she just met is realistic and fits the character you’ve developed so far.

The attacker (which I assume is a controller?) is a good balance of mysterious and terrifying. I want to know much more about this world, and Rebecca. I’m excited to see more of this.

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Very interested.

The opening gives sense of a very dark, dystopian world with a threat of immediate danger.

When the wardens show up, the narrator mentions that she is insulted they aren’t wearing body armour. The way she says this seems to indicate that she is going to attack them, but instead she just runs away. Though it is apparent that she has power, considering the control over electricity, that line doesn’t fall in line with her actions.

She seems extremely smart and talented, considering she developed a cloaking device for her bike so I would like to see some further explanation on how she came to acquire these skills.

I also didn’t quite understand why she was so surprised about the wardens figuring out she was a possible GP. The lights in the building randomly going out seems less plausible than a GP knocking them out, especially if they are very openly hunted.

There are some grammar and spelling errors that need to be cleaned up, like using loose instead of lose. A bit of formatting on the dialogue would improve the overall flow of the story. Just separating out the dialogue from the main paragraphs would do it, I think.

Beyond that it is an interesting start to what I hope will turn into a great novel. There is a lot of potential here and I wish you the best of luck writing.

- Dryger

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An amusing read

This was a fun read that addresses an issue I have see brought up many times before. As a fan of LoZ, I have wondered just what kind of toll time traveling would have had on link. While I usually have thought of, and seen, this question tackled in a more serious sense, it is good to see a more humorous take on it as well.

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Wonderful

As I believe I mentioned before I have almost no knowledge of Naruto, having only seen a handful of episodes a long time ago. As such, I judged this story on it’s own merit and as an original fiction.

First chapter was very captivating. First person stories are made or broken by the narrators ability to create a voice for the main character that is likable and compelling and you seem to have done that. You really captured the felling of confusion.

I was a very big fan of the casual reveal of ninjas and the simplified Chakra explanation.

The development of the relationship between Quorra and Kakashi felt very natural, progressing from confusion and suspicion to curiosity to respect and trust. I especially liked chapter 14, where they are walking together in the rain, even if he had to ruin the moment.

So as not to spoil any future readers of this review, I will say that the final chapter with Leda was extremely well done. You did a good job conveying the emotions that Quorra felt.

A few small changes in tenses from time to time, but those weren’t too prevalent and didn’t break the flow of the story all that much. A small amount of editing and you could nab all of them.

I do wish I could offer more to improve the story, but in terms of technical writing skills I believe it is solid. Most of the dialogue felt natural and scenes flowed well from one to another.

Best of luck in the contest and you have more than earned a vote from me.

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An interesting world

Alright! Looks like you have a real interesting world built up here and some great characters. I’ve always been a fan of fantasy style stories, so this was right up my alley. I really like how you have a character in the Red Witch that is far from in control of her powers. Allows you to really build on that character and have her grow as the story continues.

Now, onto some things I think you could consider to improve your story.

One thought I had very early on. Wielders of magic are not permitted inside of the town, but Jackson still uses and is known by the name Spellbinder? It might be more prudent for him to go by a pseudonym, or at least change his name so it doesn’t allude to magic.

When the hunter discovers the spell book he gasps, then everyone gasps against almost immediately and it breaks the flow a little bit. May want to consider making a small change so it reads less awkward.

Also, one thing to watch is over using terms like “signature” or “usual.” In chapter 11 you put “Muffin ran around her, as she usually did, and Jackson sighed as usual” and then shortly after that you had Arthur and his ‘signature grin.’ The readers will come to notice that the characters do certain things on their own, so you don’t have to point them out too often.

The story seems very interesting and I think you have a good start, but you’re doing a lot of telling and not enough showing. You tell me that the Red Witch wants to learn to control her power, but I don’t see enough of that from her, only from what the narrator says.

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Lots of information.

You seem to have created a very large and detailed world which is great! However, the reader is given a very large amount of information from the get go. In the opening chapter you seem to have an entire potential novel there, but it is told so quickly. I understand why, as it's a story being told to the character, but it still a bit jarring It may be better to expand on that or make that its own full length story, or even a short story.

The first interaction between Rosetta and Master Jay seem too informal and rushed. It feels like if he is a master she would revere him more. The dialogue also doesn't flow as smoothly as it could. Part of this is due to the fact that the characters often speak for entered sentences without break. It might help to read aloud to make the conversations more organic.


I also noticed some technical errors. From time to time the tenses that you were using changed. Things like that really break up the flow of the story and make it hard to follow. Going through and editing a bit more is something I would recommend, or getting someone else to look at it and help you.

I think you have all the potential in your story, and from the information you presented, but it just needs to be cleaned up. Slow the story down a bit and give your characters more characterization and feeling.

Best of luck int he contest and I hope this was helpful.

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Very dark

I wasn't sure where this was going at first, beyond a rather macabre game played between two characters I assumed to be immortal. I won't say too much, so not to spoil the story, but the build up to the characters reveal was well done and upon a second read I could clearly see the hints.

Despite its length the story still manages to be quite sad yet end on a decidedly hopeful note. While it does feel complete in a way, I would love to see more of these two characters interacting, perhaps someone in the future, or even in their past, at different points in their relationship.

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Well written with a compelling start

The opening sets a very strong tone for the rest of the story. The dialogue mostly flowed well for the most part and I enjoyed the character interactions. You have a good sense for story telling and progression. I only marked off for some typos and misplaced words, though none of them were enough to ruin my enjoyment of the story. With some minor editing this could be really great.

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Amazing

When I first started reading this story, I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. The first few paragraphs really caught my attention. Your style of writing is very fluid and enticing, makes the reader want to keep going.

I honestly did not see this story taking the dark turn that it did, but it seemed to happen so naturally. Your description of the demons is enough to be thrilling and gives more than enough for the reader to imagine.

I really enjoyed the narrative switch between the part one and part two. Even though this is a short piece, the characters growth is extremely well done and hinted at in the opening.

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Good story. Needs polishing.

First of all, awesome choice of setting. Pokemon is still one of my favorite shows. You seem to really have Team Rocket down, with the interactions between Jesse, James, and Meowth. Also noticed that Harry Potter ref in the sixth chapter. The pokemon battles were fitting with how they go in the show and the Epilogue was a nice addition to the story and a good way to give it a sense of closure. Most importantly, you've done the hard part and finished the story,

Now as to what you can work on making the story better.

You need to pick a tense and stick with it. I noticed this especially in the early chapters when you were switching between past and present tense. I personally prefer past tense, but whatever you pick you need to be consistent.

Some of the dialogue is awkward and doesn't flow correctly.. It's often hard to see when you read through on your own, but try slowing down and reading it aloud.

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A good opening

The opening gave a good sense of what Lowell is all about. Depending on the length of the story, you may want to spread that information out more over time, but for now it seems fine to me. There were some grammar mistakes, but I'm sure with a few read through and edits you could find and fix all of them.

One thing I would recommend to strength the first chapter. When you have III hack into the NOBLE computers it comes off as very abrupt. Instead, it might be more effective to have the computers act up. Maybe have a few of the screens start to go haywire, or a few of the techs start yelling that they have a breach in the system. Something to add a buildup and create some tension.

You for sure have a good start and an interesting premise. You've got my vote and best of luck!

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Wonderfully dark from start to finish

Horror is not usually my choice for fiction. Normally my interest isn't piqued enough to pay attention as it falls into the tried and true cliches. This story pulled me in immediately, even though it was in a "Oh god, what is going to happen?" kind of way.

Rarely have I read a story where the author is willing to have a main character start in such a violent manner and that is exactly what kept me entranced. It's shockingly violent and from the start you can tell he is going to go too far and it's tragic in a way.. It's almost like a train wreck, you want to look away but you simply cannot because of the awfulness of the situation.

Your writing style is fluid and extremely easy to follow. The description is beautifully done which is so important when writing in the first person and doubly so when it is a story such as this.

Wonderfully done.

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That final chapter

Had to be my favorite of the entire piece. The way you were able to convey the emotions was fantastic as it kept in character, making it feel like a discovery for both the protagonist and the reader.

I am usually not a fan of first-person writing simply because many authors end up over-explaining the story through the mouthpiece of the protagonist. You did a great job at avoiding this and I never felt like I was getting bogged down in the details of the piece, yet I was still given enough information to understand what was going on around me with just enough to leave me wanting to read and understand more. It's a great balance and one I think a lot of people struggle with.

The only complaint I have is that the formatting of the first chapter dialogue is different than usual, with the dialogue being inside the blocks of text. It stays coherent and I was able to follow it, but it is not what I am used to see and it threw me a little to read at first.

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Top 10 in Beyond Time
2nd Place in Skybound
StoryPeak Top 10%
Top 10% in Epic Worlds
Got 100 Readers in the StoryPeak Novel Contest

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