• Member Since 3rd Sep, 2011
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Writer, RCL co-curator, EQD prereader, dramatic reader, VA, fic reviewer. Vote for my next fic to release!

More Blog Posts2246

  • Sunday
    Fic reviews, August 2nd!

    Ugh, why is it August already? D: Why do I feel like shit? Why did Flash Fiction Online have a bunch of stories this month that didn't make sense?

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    6 comments · 150 views
  • Friday
    State of the Writer, July 2020!

    I am having a day, let me tell you. I shouldn't even be up right now, but at 5:40 this morning, my cat popped the screen out of the bathroom window and took a stroll around our roof for an hour. The adrenalin's long since worn off, and I want to die. D:

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    12 comments · 201 views
  • 1 week
    This is great world-building

    I've seen a scant handful of ideas over the last decade for how deaf ponies might communicate. Fanartist Meadowmood has come up with something pretty original!

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    14 comments · 299 views
  • 1 week
    People are shipping this now

    And I don't hate it.

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    24 comments · 467 views
  • 1 week
    Fic recs, July 26th: I'm bad at picking stories edition!

    SPark is selling another plushie! This time, it's Celestia, ergo clearly worth your money.

    So, I know I just posted yesterday, but this one's done and my video recording didn't work this morning, so I'm just doing whatever today. <.<

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    11 comments · 242 views

Fic recs, October 26th · 8:33pm Oct 26th, 2014

Man, do you realize Leap of Faith is a look at how scammers play on the fears of the elderly? Heavy.

Griffin from City of Doors has started posting redirects to his blog on his Fimfic account, along with rewrites of old reviews! So if you didn’t have a way to follow his site, now you can be one click away by following him here!

Have today’s Sonata dose.

This is another monster review blog because I wanted to get one story out from each of the collections I’m now trying to get through. Expect lots of Cold in Gardez, Esle Ynopemos, Benman, Chris and Pascoite in the future!

H: 0 R: 7 C: 10 V: 1 N: 0

I’m Afraid of Changeling by Cold in Gardez
Genre: Comedy
We kick off the story collections with a short piece about a changeling going to a psychiatrist. What a comedy this is! The centerpiece is the psychiatrist, who remains unflappable and entirely professional while his client does very changeling-like things. There’s a lot of great wordplay in this, and the punchline is fantastic. For feeling shorter than it is, it manages to pack in a lot of laughs.

A Night in the Barn by Esle Ynopemos
Genre: Sad
Granny Smith can’t sleep one night, which ends up being rather fateful. Honestly, I’d hate to think what would’ve happened if she hadn’t been up to see Applejack leave the house. This is a pretty solid little piece, giving us some nice background on Granny and approaching Applejack’s reaction to the loss of her parents in an original way. Definitely check this out if you’re into stories about that.

One Giant Leap by Benman
Sequel to One Small Step
Genre: Politics
Princess Luna seeks to reclaim her role as Princess of Equestria starting with a few titles, including... Captain of the Wonderbolts? I was kind of hesitant to get into Ben’s collection, because so many of the stories are abandoned, but despite being marked so, and being a sequel to a story of his I haven’t read yet, this stands on its own remarkably well. It comes in two parts, first Celestia and Luna playing Go and discussing Luna’s plans, then Luna and Spitfire racing for control of the Wonderbolts. It’s obvious that there’s room for continuation, but I was satisfied by the ending, not to mention it’s pretty funny. As for connections to One Small Step, all I saw was a mention of Luna’s assistant Lodestar, who I’ve seen in other stories of Ben’s, so I wasn't bothered by it and now you know enough to deal with her yourself. This is a good followup to Luna Eclipsed, and it’s well-written to boot.

Doppelganger by obabscribbler
Genre: Comedy
Rarity takes over for Vinyl Scratch. The whole situation is as well-explained as it is far-fetched. My only complaint is that this is all setup with no denouement; I wanna know how the show goes! Still, if you ever wanted to see two characters interacting who normally never would, this is your chance.
Recommended as Light Reading

Dream Pony by Dimondium
Genre: Shipping
Pinkie recounts her relationship with Twilight. This is pretty average as shipping goes: Pinkie likes Twilight, finally works up the courage to tell her, and finds out Twilight secretly liked her back. The draw is the follow-through and the voicing. I started off feeling like this was too serious to be Pinkie, but in short order the narrative really takes a turn for her style, and the serious bits are understandably mixed into that. As for the follow-through, we don’t see much of the courtship, but this goes into the wedding, and them dealing with other life issues: losing friends, relationship troubles. That said, it is all told, so YMMV.
Recommended for Shippers Only

One Day in the Crystal Library by FanOfMostEverything
Genre: World-Building
The last three collections are (mostly) writeoff-based, and rather than read and review the literal dozens of entries for my writeoff edition, Imma just do ‘em with these guys. This one deals with Sombra and Cadence before all that “taking over the Crystal Empire” business. The ending scene feels rushed, but otherwise this posits a scenario that is both believable and interesting. I do wish a little more had been done with it.
Recommended If You Like World-Building Vignettes

Of Course, You Realize… by Chris
Genre: Comedy
Rarity and Rainbow Dash play War; it doesn’t end well. This is maybe the definition of “just enough” as stories go: at not even 300 words, it's sufficient to get the scene established and lay out the punchline. I will make some bones about Rarity’s behavior, but it’s kind of worth it given that it's Rainbow Dash falling for it. Reading this won’t put a dent in your day, anyway.
Recommended as Light Reading

Sweet Temptation by Pascoite
Genre: Comedy
Dinky Doo is taunted by a muffin. This is mostly light comedy for the sake of cuteness, but it takes a bit of a turn when Derpy Ditzy shows up. Also, there’s something truly amazing about Dinky saying “By Celestia, I’ll unmake you!” There’s a good balance of adorable and super-serious meant for comedic effect, but I can see a few places where word choices could have been improved. Granted, that’s comparing something two years old to the author’s current works; had anyone else written this, I might not have even noticed. Definitely worth it if you’re into cute stuff, especially as it doesn’t go overboard.

From a Filly on a Hill by littlerobotbird
Genre: Slice of Life
This is written very strangely, making it hard to suss out what’s going on. What I think it is is Dinky recounting a time she lay out on a hill after either a fight with her mother over having gotten into a fight at school (likely started by Dinky trying to protect her), or that fight itself. There are concrete things I can point to, like the tense shifts and certain spots where repetition doesn’t work, that are definite errors. And then the perspective starts getting all wonky toward the end, and the overall effect is simply confusing. I’m not sure what the purpose was of writing the story this way. (Up until the very end, I thought the narrator might be the spirit of Dinky’s departed father, watching over her.) I’m just baffled by it.
Vaguely Recommended

Trixie’s Favourite Pony by Blueshift
Reading by Sleipniiir on Doom Pie Network that I am not linking to because the cover image is kinda NSFW
Reading by ShadowOfCygnus
Genre: Crackfic
Trixie finally works up the courage to tell her favorite pony she loves her. This is an extraordinarily silly (and old) piece, written by the master of silliness himself. The central joke is amusing, things ramp up nicely, and it’s no longer than it needs to be. If you want Trixie silliness, look no further.
Recommended If You Like Silly Things

Scent by DegeTheMighty
Reading by Scribbler, et. al.
Genre: Horror
After Ponyville’s first Nightmare Night celebration featuring Princess Luna, Big Macintosh goes in search of his missing little sister, all the while aware of an unfamiliar scent in the air. This does at least one thing majorly right, which is using an unusual sense to instill foreboding over the narrative. And “foreboding” is the right word, for that’s what I was filled with by the end. I was waiting for the proverbial skeleton to jump out, but this story doesn’t bother with trying to explain itself. I however was intrigued and wanted to know what the heck was going on. The answer is in the comments, but I’ll say this much: the one thing missing is an indication that the scent is a signifier in the first place. Once you know that, it’s just a matter of piecing together the fridge horror yourself, spoiler comments or no. Going through the story myself, I wasn’t quite looking at it from the right angle to get the full effect, and that’s fine, because I did at least get something out of this. If you’re looking for a spooky scare this Halloween, check this one out! (And if it spoops you too much, check out the parody in the comments.)
Recommended for Horror Fans

Rainbooms and Marshmallows by electreXcessive
Reading by Doctor Cobra
Mature: Sex
Genre: Clopfic
Rainbow Dash visits Rarity, her self-esteem crushed after her encounter with Prince Blueblood, and cheers her up with sex. I’ll hand it to the author, the intro to this is pretty well-crafted, though it also contains my major issue with the piece. Rarity is clearly shown to be in the throes of self-doubt, her self-worth entirely nil. So is it okay that she has sex with the first pony to compliment her, genuine compliments or not? Beyond that, this has some weird issues with POV and cheesy dialogue. Face it, if you’re coming at this story for anything but the clop watch out for the fisting, you’re doing it wrong.
Recommended for Cloppers Only

The Words Won’t Come by True Blue Spark
Reading by Hero541
Genre: Shipping
Fluttershy tries to work up the courage to tell Applejack how she feels about her. At its core, this is pretty much every shipfic with Fluttershy on the attack. In true anime style, she “accidentally” cooks too much food, invites AJ out for a picnic, and then tries her damnedest to say the words she wants to. In true February fic form (I think; it’s been a while since I used that term), she starts out already liking AJ, and they end up practically married by day’s end. Non-shippers will definitely want to skip this, but if you like shipping — and this is one of my favorite pairings, I should add — this is fluffy and cute and features a great cameo by Apple Bloom.
Recommended for Shippers Only

Maud’s River by ArtichokeLust
Reading by Akash the Reader
Genre: Character Study
Maud’s reaction to Pinkie’s first party. As character pieces go, this is quite good. Maud’s voice subsumes the narrative, and it makes a good case for her having some kind of mental issue. (Not autism, though, she’s too good with metaphors. If anything, her inability to understand the actions and emotions of others sounds more like sociopathy, at least in this story.) It’s also a very admirable and believable effort to reconcile season four canon with season one. (Remember that period of time between Pinkie Pride and Maud Pie where the question on everyone’s mind was “Who is the third sister?”) Though I will say that adding in Maud finding Boulder was a bit of an overreach, but probably the only issue I have with this. I’m just glad someone not only tried to do this, but got it right.

The Brief Reign of Princess Twily by Forthwith
Reading by Dr. Wolf
Genre: Comedy
Wanting to give Celestia a day off, Twilight Sparkle finds a loophole in Equestrian law that will allow her to do just that. Hopefully. This story has a “Lesson Zero but not terrible” vibe to it. (The scene when Twilight is contemplating ways to cause a national crisis got me worried, but the execution pays off.) It’s a really fun piece, even if it drags just a bit in the middle. We get to see both Twilight and Shining Armor as kids in the palace, and Celestia having a little fun at Twilight’s expense. Plus, filly Twilight as a cranky tyrant is just lots of fun. Also, there’s plenty of Cakelestia. If you missed this back when it was in the featured box, now’s the time to check it out!

PETAshy by Chelis
Reading by Savrin Drake
Genre: Crackfic
Fluttershy ends up as part of an animal liberation raid on a facility, coordinated by the Eco Kids from school. What strikes me about this is how she gets involved in this: she’s got a crush on the kid with the green dreadlocks, if you remember him, and what she thinks is going to be a midnight tryst ends up being, well, this. That’s hilarious. That said, the ending is played rather straight, so this isn’t quite as funny as it could be. This is in major need of proofreading, with colon misuse and “they” instead of “the” all over the place, but if you’re here for lols, you’re probably not going to care much.
Recommended If You Like Silly EQG Stuff

Bad Sonata! by Syeekoh
Genre: Crackfic
The Dazzlings accidentally meet up with Twilight and Sunset at Donut Joe’s after their defeat, where a horrible truth comes to light. This story is kind of amazing for a number of reasons. First, it shows the Dazzlings post-defeat as actually caring about one another, Adagio for Sonata in particular. That’s definitely not how the trope has been going lately. Second, Sonata has a “stupid attack”. Third, it balls up a bunch of EQG-related fanon into a single explanation that manages to be the most Cards Against Humanity-style hilarious thing ever. And then we learn about the power of forgiveness. This is pretty good, but be warned, it does take a turn.
Recommended for Terrible People

Hooves of Clay by iisaw
Genre: Political
Twilight attacks Lyra in broad daylight, revealing her as a changeling, then vows to do something about them. It doesn't turn out well. I have my misgivings about this story, and though it tackles most of them during its course, the primary one remains: I can’t imagine Twilight getting that angry. I mean, we’ve seen her that angry, two seasons after this story was written, but problems of using later show canon for critique aside, it took a clear and present threat to all five of her friends, the princesses, and Discord before she acted on her emotions. Still, this ends up being more about Luna, and Twilight bonding with Luna, and the state of modern American politics than anything. Yeah, that last one’s totally in there. This gets maybe a little tangled up in the allegory, focusing on it more than is necessary, but I nevertheless appreciated it, and that it ends on a positive note. Given how things stand at the start of the second chapter — from where most of my misgivings stemmed — I was expecting another The Hanging of Twilight Sparkle. It’s just a matter of getting everyone to calm down so they can talk things out like rational ponies, after which they don’t seem to be so out of character. And Twilight learns a letter about politics. Definitely a worth read, as it left me with a lot to chew on.

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Comments ( 24 )

What's Leap of Faith?

Wow, you're going to read the whole anthology? I think you've read all the rest of the entries before anyway and reviewed most of them in the write-off threads. This is probably the only one that might surprise you in any way. The rest are also completely unchanged from their write-off drafts, though quite a few got expanded into one-shots or incorporated into other stories.

You failed at breaking that page.

Majin Syeekoh

So I did it.

I wrote a Dark crackfic.

Huzzah me.

Gah! What are you doing reviewing that!? I throw stuff into Dueling Keyboards exactly as it was in the Write-Off that spawned it.
Yeah, I should probably not do that. :twilightsheepish:
(Also, I love how people say the ending's rushed on that one when all I did was describe what happened in the episode.)

In any case, thanks for the new population on my Read Later list. :twilightsmile:


Posting reviews of individual chapters from collections! You monster.

That makes it nearly impossible to add said reviews to the big master list if you do another one for any of the other chapters or the collection as a whole. Decided to strike just after I double my daily workload, hmmm? I'm onto you.

What's this Sonata link? *click* Cute! Wait, was I mildly annoyed by something a moment ago? Oh well, nothing important I'm sure.

So, you're planning to review everything from Bantam Tales? Ehhh... there's some stuff I like in there, but the first half is mostly stuff I wrote in 2011, with 15 minutes from prompt reception to completion; expect more "Of Course You Realize..."-quality stuff before you get to, say, something I did for a minific writeoff. Oh well, I appreciate the review anyway; conditionally recommended for light reading is a lot better than anything I wrote nearly four years ago has any right to be, to my mind. I'll take it!


Can't you just link to the chapters themselves instead of to the collections?


I liked Bantam Tales.

As for the links, for the big master list I've got one slot per title per reviewer.

Before I read this journal, I had 9 unread chapters in my Tracking bookshelf. Now I have 124.



Oh, I see. Hmm... maybe you could do something like this:

Lost Cities
My ReviewPresentperfect – Royal Canterlot Library -

and keep adding links as needed? And if you run out of letters in his name, he could always become "Present Perfectttttttttt!"

Incidentally, that Forthwith fic is the first of three so far in a "Season Zero" series.


I've been enjoying them.

All those collection recommendations, I'm just going to panic and throw up my hands and give up. I don't really have a method in my reading system for reading individual chapters out of a story without reading the entire thing.

Author Interviewer

Eh, I already did that on the applicable journals. :B

Season 4, episode 20! (The one about Granny Smith swimming?)

That's the idea!

Dammit. And having fixed it now, it probably doesn't matter because everyone will have seen it already. :/ Oops.

Well, the episode was rushed too. :V

Most of these collections I've already reviewed stories from, some more than one!

It's nice being able to air good writers' dirty laundry and continually lambaste them for failing to be perfect their entire lives. :V Isn't it?

I do! It's called "ignore unread chapters for a while". :B It really hurts in the OCD.

I ended up reading Hooves of Clay.

One thing you did not mention in your review is how much of that story is kind of irrelevant. The entire plot with the Mane Six and Shining Armor is completely extraneous and really never gets adequately resolved by the story at all; I don't even know why it is in the story in the first place.

Author Interviewer

There are a lot of odd attempts at humor in it, which yeah, do distract. I actually hadn't realized that plot was left unresolved, probably because it's so entirely extraneous that I forgot it was even a thing.

I see your Raridashy story of clops

I do not care

I take the story and I bury it in my raridash story hoarde, where id belongs. All is well once more

Author Interviewer

Honestly, the pairing's the only part of that story I was really interested in. :B Not enough people write Raridash!

Despite being Chelis's frienemy, PETAshy is the only story of his I've actually read. And well, I don't think it's actually supposed to be a crackfic. :unsuresweetie:

2558163 at one point I was 1/3 of most of the Raridash folders

Author Interviewer

It's not?

...You know, it doesn't have a comedy tag. c.c Was I reading things into it that weren't there? WTF. It's like that Sunset Eats Meat thing in the featured box then.

I think we're all a little bit Cynewulf, when you get right down to it. :B

2560376 you delightful bastard


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