• Member Since 16th May, 2013
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PaulAsaran


Technical Writer from the U.S.A.'s Deep South. Writes horsewords, and reviews both independently and for Seattle's Angels. New reviews posted every Thursday! Writing Motto: "Go Big or Go Home!"

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  • Thursday
    Paul's Thursday Reviews CCXI

    My preliminary editing of the original fiction version of Guppy Love is all but finished! Soon I will have the entire story stored in GDocs and ready for prereading, which means it’s about time I started really looking for prereaders. I intend to ask the prereaders of the MLP version to come back to evaluate the changes, but I’d like to get a few others to offer a fresh perspective. I’m

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  • 1 week
    Paul's Thursday Reviews CCX

    Howdy, folks. I’m afraid I don’t have much to report this week. Well, other than the very real possibility of maintaining 2,000 words/day of writing this month. Feels like I haven’t pulled something like that off in ages. Pays that I’m finally cutting down on the video games again. It comes in phases.

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    4 comments · 294 views
  • 2 weeks
    Paul's Thursday Reviews CCIX

    The past week has been one of highs and lows. The brief crash has led to me being two days behind on my reading schedule. The good news is that I’ve got a Vacation Week coming up in a couple weeks that I can use to easily make up the lost time. The bad news is that my current major reading project was scheduled to be finished the day before its review gets published, so I’ve no choice but to

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    7 comments · 337 views
  • 2 weeks
    Charity Stream!

    I usually save these kinds of things for my main review blog, but this one's time sensitive, so: my old friend Cerulean Voice is hosting a charity stream! Head here to get the details.

    0 comments · 72 views
Feb
4th
2016

Paul's Thursday Reviews XXVI · 5:10pm Feb 4th, 2016

Can't talk much today. I have an aunt who needs someone to drive her to the hospital (no worries, it's just a checkup on a broken foot). I figured I'd hurry up and get your weekly dose of review crack in before I left, because I'm nice like that.

But I should note that this week marks a first for me: I'm reviewing something non-MLP. It was a request, and I decided to give it a go. Before people bombard me with review requests for their favorite original fiction messterpieces, I should point out that I will not be doing this often. This is an MLP-themed blog and I want to keep it that way. I may come up with some ground rules for later so others can ask for the same thing, or I may decide not to do them anymore. For now, consider me hesitant to do it again.

Also, Order of Shadows updates on Sunday. Get hype?

EDIT: Yes, I know I said I'd change my rating names this week. I got busy, okay?

Stories for This Week:

Just a Joke by Kodeake
A Sweet Taste of Cake by The Descendant
Dead Silver by Max Florschutz (Original Fiction Request by Viking ZX)
The Benevolent Reign of Queen Nightmare Rarity by Alex Warlorn (Re-Read)
Diary of the Night by CalebH (Completed Story)
Total Word Count: 348,896

Rating System

Why Haven't You Read These Yet?: 0
Pretty Good: 1
Worth It: 3
Not Bad: 0
None: 1


Ah, romance. My old stomping… uh… genre. Still a favorite. In Just a Joke, Rainbow Dash decides to ask Twilight Sparkle out on a date on April 1st. Why April 1st? Because then if Twilight says no she can claim it was just an attempt at a prank.

Twilight doesn’t say no.

But she does believe Rainbow’s pulling a prank.

This idea is great, even if I question whether Equestria follows the April Fools routine like we do. It is also competently handled; I felt a steadily growing worry for Rainbow’s sake as the date went on and Twilight kept the ‘prank’ going. I also like that Twilight’s concept of a prank seems to fall outside the definition of most, which I think fits her general lack of social experience. Simply put, Twilight looks at the whole event as her trying to ‘outprank’ Rainbow by raising the stakes on the date, without any regard to the fact that even if it had been a legitimate prank, it wouldn’t have been a funny one.

On the other hand, I do find it strange that she didn’t realize the truth the moment she admitted defeat. We all know that Rainbow’s response to victory is braggadocious, but her response to Twilight at that time was subdued at best, which should have been a dead giveaway.

There’s also the addition of Pinkie, which is both good and not-so-good. It’s very Pinkie-like, but it also amounts to so little. Pinkie gets a tiny but important part, and then we never see her again. Given what her overall role was, shouldn’t we have gotten at least one more scene involving her? She’s little more than a plot tool, brought in to achieve a purpose and rapidly forgotten. How unfair.

Then there’s the writing itself, which could have been much stronger. There’s telly narrative:

“No! No that's not what I meant!” Twilight backpedaled, fearing she'd unintentionally insulted her friend.

Because the dialogue and the backpedaling doesn’t tell us that she’s afraid or worried?

There are redundant points:

Today was a day of cleanliness. Today was a day for cleaning.

There’s repetitive word use:

The cattails littering the side of the water, waving in the gentle wind. The dark figures of fish swimming through the water. The way the moonlight refracted off the water, making the banks glow with an eery white light.

Throw in a few typos, a few instances of poor word choice and some incorrect punctuation, and you’ve got a lot of trouble getting the mood right.

Which reminds me of another issue that may be considered subjective; the descriptions. Late in the story, Kodeake takes time to describe the scene around Twilight and Rainbow, going into lots of detail. Obviously, the author was trying to make a romantic scene. To me, this didn’t work. Not because the descriptions were poor, mind you, but because we aren’t made privy to how Twilight and Rainbow feel about said scenes. We’re told it’s a beautiful sight, but it feels like the opinion of the narrator rather than the characters.

But again, I consider that a subjective complaint. I’m sure there are plenty of readers who thought the scene was painted beautifully and that it affected the characters in great ways. I just don’t agree with them.

Ultimately, I liked the story. The general idea was strong enough to keep me interested even with the variety of writing mistakes and poor decisions. The ending felt like it dragged on a bit – largely because of the descriptions that did nothing for me – but I still think it was a solid try by Kodeake.

Bookshelf: Worth It


This makes the third story be The Descendant that I’ve read. Curiously, my impressions regarding this story are very different from those of the first two tales I enjoyed.

A Sweet Taste of Cake tells the story of the budding romance between Carrot and Cup Cake. It begins when Carrot Cake, as a youth struggling to get by on his own, spots and becomes instantly attracted to a girl way out of his league, even though he doesn’t know it yet. Cup Cake’s family is wealthy, but it’s not money or elitism or even jealous rivals that get in the way of their relationship. No, it’s a father who has a reputation for beating Cup Cake’s suitors to a bloody pulp.

Let me start off with a few things I didn’t like. First off, there’s this unfortunate tendency of the author to use repetition to push forward points. I’m okay with that in small amounts, but that’s not what we get here. For example, in one chapter we get a section of 48 short paragraphs, and all but three of them begin with the exact same three words. I get The Descendant was trying to emphasize, but this is just too much. Let’s not mention the more basic mistakes of repetition that regularly rear their ugly heads throughout the story.

There is also this inference that Celestia is a chessmaster who, without ever actually being present, managed to tempt these two lovers into doing all the right things to get Pinkie into their lives and, therefore, play their part in the defeat of Nightmare Moon. I’m sorry, I know it’s a popular concept, but I just can’t buy it. It works well enough for the story, but it still goes beyond my scope of belief.

Playing directly into that is the constant remarking on the ‘threads of fate,’ strings crossing and settling upon strings that leads to other things. At times, if can be hard to tell if The Descendant is suggesting that every act we make leads to everything else, or if we have no control over our lives. Both concepts are supported, though, so I suppose he could be doing that. Even so, I was regularly annoyed by this continuous reminder that there is such a thing as fate, a reminder that spent an awfully large amount of time keeping the story from moving forward.

Which touches upon the biggest issue I had with the story: sometimes a single topic – or collection of topics – is talked about on and on and on in the narrative until it feels like the author is beating the proverbial dead horse. Excessive length does not make a scene more powerful, it just makes it longer. Of course, it could be that the longer a scene goes on, the more devotion is made to it, and therefor it must be more important, right? Not really, it just makes the readers wonder when the point is going to come along. But the scene just keeps going and you know that what you’re seeing is important, so these emotions should be powerful, and the readers will almost certainly understand the impact, the incredible importance, the lingering strength of thoughts that won’t end because they are just too valuable to be ignored. And that’s the kind of thing we want to—

You can only talk about something for so long before it becomes uninteresting.

Now, with those complaints aside, I enjoyed this story. It takes the unremarkable and generally overlooked Cake family and turns them into the heroes of their own lives. Mr. Cake in particular is singularly impressive from the moment he begins his awkward and not-so-charming efforts to woo his round… er… not that round… angel. Despite being anything from a hero, the lengths he goes to to earn her hoof are extraordinary.

But what really makes this story shine is that Carrot and Cup Cake are given such strong, interesting personalities. They are continuously fun to watch, both as individuals and as a couple. Carrot’s determined devotion, Cup Cake’s desperate planning, their continuous playing off of one another’s strengths make them a great pair to observe in the growth of their relationship. Some moments are indeed powerful, and I couldn’t help but cheer them on with every success and setback.

There are a couple minor things to note. For one, readers should be warned that this story follows old canon, as in it takes on common concepts that have since been disproven by more recent seasons. This isn’t much of an issue provided you can accept that, at the time of writing and just for example, Pinkie only had two canon sisters, neither of which had official names.

Speaking of which, I think The Descendant missed an opportunity with Pinkie. While her arrival into the lives of the Cakes is shown, her issue is brought up and resolved with amazing swiftness. Now, I grant that Pinkie and her family are shown in small snippets from the very beginning of the story, but these scenes are so brief and thin compared to the Cakes’ scenes that they hardly register in the reader’s minds.

That I don’t mind. But I still feel that, once Pinkie first started living with them, the solutions and the sense of her being part of the family came far too quickly given the overall pacing of the story. The result is a series of far less powerful scenes and an impression that the author just wanted to get past them as quickly as possible.

Still, the story is not broken by these issues. While it doesn’t have the strength of the other two stories I have read by The Descendant, I am still glad to have read it, and I look forward to reading even more.

Bookshelf: Worth It


Dead Silver

By Max Florschutz
Original Fiction Request by Viking ZX

And now for something completely different, and which I don’t expect to do very often. After my review of The Dusk Guard: Beyond the Borderlands, Viking ZX contacted me about potentially reviewing his novel, Dead Silver. Although the idea struck me as dubious – this is a site devoted to MLP, after all – I agreed on the basis of making this a testing run.

Dead Silver stars the startlingly big Hawke Decroux, a shaman who specializes in animal control. One day, an old acquaintance of Hawke calls to invite him to partake in the hunt for a chupacabra in the New Mexico town of Silver Dreams. Since catching a chupacabra is one of Hawke’s age-old longings, he readily agrees, thinking of the trip as a vacation.

But when he gets to the town, his friend is nowhere to be found. Hawke promptly begins his search for the missing man, and in the process comes to learn that this old mining town has much bigger – and far more dangerous – secrets than a blood drinking goat killer.

Let me open this by noting my favorite part of the entire story: the method of worldbuilding. From the get-go, we are informed that Hawke is a shaman, his friend Rocke is a spook, there’s an agency in the US government called the NSAU, and chupacabras are real enough that nobody smirks when you say you’re trying to find one. At no point whatsoever does the author bother to explain what any of this means. Instead, Florschutz plunges forward, letting the events unfold and letting the world wrap around you.

I love it when authors do this. There’s no lengthy explanations about government reforms and the public acceptance of Unusuals, nor do we get any detailed extrapolations on the limits and advantages of Hawke’s powers. We gather the nature of things through offhand bits of dialogue, little tags of info in the narrative and the actions of the characters. It’s a much more involving method of information delivery, and I wholeheartedly approve.

Now let’s address something I didn’t like, although it is arguably subjective. This story is set up as a mystery; while Hawke and another character spend time in Silver Dreams, clues are constantly thrown in their faces as to the exact nature of what’s going on. I’ve said before that a good mystery leads the reader on just as much as the characters, and this story does that wonderfully. But... by chapter nine, I had a good idea what was going on. By the end of chapter ten, I had a working theory. In the end, that theory was proven mostly correct, although the details were a little off.

And the entire time, I’m shouting at the characters in my head for not putting two and two together as fast as I did.

Now, I’m willing to cut some slack to the main character. By his own admission, he’s not an adventurer and this isn’t his area of expertise. But it is his partner’s area and, given all the hints we’ve been offered about the regularities of his life, I find it very hard to believe that he didn’t figure things out or make the right connections more quickly. It felt to me almost as if the author intentionally added a cup of stupid to the guy’s brain for the sake of keeping the story going.

At the same time, I could be overestimating the guy’s intellect. After all, we really are only given snippets and tiny clues as to what his overall capabilities are, so there’s no direct evidence that he’s smart enough to solve the mystery that quickly even with all the facts in front of him. And I must also acknowledge that the guy got a lot of his information from the main character rather than under his own action, though just how much is up for debate. This is why I call the complaint subjective: there’s enough wiggle room that it might be considered plausible, but it didn’t feel plausible to me.

In the end, this story was strong. I enjoyed it from beginning to end, even when most of it was just the main character wandering a desert town searching for clues (mildly related note: I’d like to suggest 9,000 citizens is only a ‘small town’ to city folks. My hometown’s a third that size!). The mystery – and my constant desire to solve it or see if my theories were accurate – keeps the story strong from beginning to end. It may not wow you, but it earns credit for capable characterization, a well-developed world not quite like our own and a demonstrated ability to keep things interesting. I would like to suggest that the author put the story up for another editing run, though, because I saw quite a few places with missing words, repetition, or incorrect punctuation; not enough to be a major problem, but enough to be a distraction.

I would recommend Dead Silver. It’s not as interesting or epic as the author’s fanfiction works, but it was definitely a good read.

Bookshelf: Pretty Good


This story is exactly what I remembered.

That’s not a good thing.

I have not read hardly any of the comics – they take the ‘silly’ part of the franchise way too far for my tastes – but I am very aware of the arc in which Rarity becomes possessed by the Nightmare. If I have the story right, in the comics Spike gets to the moon (by climbing a rope; further evidence of why I completely ignore the comics) and helps Rarity overcome the Nightmare. The Benevolent Reign of Queen Nightmare Rarity is a ‘what if’ scenario in which, instead of Rarity being possessed by the Nightmare, she absorbs its power and takes control of the Darkness. She then manages to convince Spike to join her and returns to Equestria with the goal of bringing her benevolence and generosity to all of Equestria… albeit in the ‘right’ way.

This story suffers serious issues from the very beginning. Rather than show the moment that breaks comic canon, Alex Warlorn skips ahead to after Rarity is already in Equestria and planning her next move. Her checklist consists of:

“Infect our other five friends with The Darkness, achieve group Alicornhood, make Sweetie Belle the cutest Nightmare Princess ever, invest in mushroom farming, anything I'm forgetting before we get started?”

Add to this her using a megaphone to substitute for the royal voice (which I hate in any form, even comedic), Spike pummeling the red dragon from the show (where the heck did he come from?), injecting cartoon humor in a situation where it has no place, and amateurish dialogue. The story’s barely 350 words long at this point, and it’s already thrown me half a dozen red flags… that I’ve bothered to mention.

And I’m sorry to say that it never gets better.

The pacing is terrible. There’s no attempt whatsoever at proper transitioning. The author can never seem to decide whether to use the custom-conceived “+++”, a keyword like “-nearby-”, or (worst of all) absolutely nothing to indicate the next scene, and in every single case there is no attempt to arrange the flow of the story from one scene to another. The end result is that the whole story just keeps going without any observable shift in tone, mood or speed.

Next, dialogue. As I said, it’s amateur. Most conversations involve one or both speakers having overlong paragraphs (150+ words) of continuous dialogue with no narrative description whatsoever to aid in emotional impact, not even a saidism. In many cases, these dialogues almost descend to the level of talking heads. The end result is an under-emotional morass of unrealistic speeches and monologues that get very tiring very quickly.

Then we have character, or lack thereof. Almost everypony in the show is a doormat, gullible or just plain dumb. The Darkness seeps throughout Ponyville like a plague, but not because it’s incredibly strong. Instead, it spreads so quickly because almost every single pony it touches immediately decide to drop all pretense of intelligence, willpower, loyalty or downright common sense and submits to the magic. Derpy, Trixie, Big Mac, Cheerilee, they drop like flies. I’d find this more believable if there was some indecision or pushback from these characters, maybe a sense of doubt, but no, the nightmare-infected ponies just give a little monologue and boom, sign me up!

And I’m supposed to take this seriously?

Granted, a few ponies resisted – Zecora and Fluttershy, for example – and Mayor Mare only accepted begrudgingly. But even in those cases, the moment could have been much stronger if not for the lack of description, monologuing and rapid-fire conclusions.

Then we have Rarity herself, who somehow thinks that wealth distribution and wish fulfillment will bring utopia to Equestria… and that Celestia and Luna will be happy to give up their crowns when they see how ‘successful’ she is. It may be a subjective issue, but I seriously doubt that Rarity is that naïve, even under the influence of the Darkness.

Then there are the needless side stories. Time and time again, the author takes the heat of the moment and jumps away to brief scenes, most of which don’t improve the story much at all and act more as wish fulfilment for the readers: Nightmare Trixie, Berry Punch getting forcefully infected, Diamond Tiara seeing her mother, Big Mac and Cheerilee getting it on. Why are these scenes present? What do they do for the story, other than make fans squeal and punch the thumbs up button?

Then there’s other mistakes in the writing itself: missing words, comma splices, obvious typos, use of all-caps for emphasis (and unable to decide between that and italics), the occasional single-spacing of paragraphs. These are constant and eye-catching.

Then there’s the presumption that the power of the Nightmare can do anything. Slurred speech? Fixed. Broken bones? Mended. Weak magic? Superpowered. No wings? Flying pro. Mentally disabled? Normal again. Got a fatal disease? Cured. The Darkness is, in a word, overpowered. With all of these abilities at its disposal, how in Celestia’s name was the Nightmare ever defeated in the first place?

The issues with this story go on and on and on, and I really need to stop before I turn this into a novel in its own right. It didn’t fail to impress me so much as it severely disappointed. It’s stories like this that lead me not to trust upvote-downvote ratios.

Bookshelf: None


Diary of the Night

By CalebH
Completed Story

If first read Diary of the Night when it was in the middle of its second book. I caught up to it at around chapter 150 and had to stop, setting it back in my RiL for future reading when finished.

This story is about what you would expect. Starting immediately after Luna’s reformation from Nightmare Moon, the story takes on the form of personal diary entries and details her unsteady mental recovery over the course of the first two seasons.

At first, this seems like a great idea, and it plays out nicely. CalebH sets their headcanon into the world of the show and, with surprising skill, crafts explanations and settings that both make sense in the canon of the show and also explain things that happen in later seasons. The depiction of Luna, while not my personal view of her, is worked wonderfully and fully realized as her background is expanded upon.

Simply put, I really enjoyed the first part of this story. The more diary entries you read, the broader and more interesting the world becomes, and the more interesting and enjoyable Luna herself is. CalebH depicts the alicorn sisters as imperfect monarchs struggling to understand and forgive one another, and it plays wonderfully. The more of Luna’s and Celestia’s flaws that come to the surface, the more engrossed I became. Right up to the final battle with Chrysalis – after the royal wedding, mind you – I had fun.

Yet there are some issues, and no small ones at that. For one, CalebH seems determined to keep the story in keeping with show canon, even when doing so forces them to make terrible decisions. For me, this was most glaring when the author decided to depict Celestia as a chessmaster (despite widespread in-story proof of her failings in this regard) in order to make it seem as though she had prepared for Tirek’s defeat years in advance, even going so far as to paint her sheer stupidity in Twilight’s Kingdom as pre-planned, ingenious strategy. (Yes, I know this complaint can be considered by some to be subjective, but damn it, I hate that episode and everything about it!)

Then we have the issue with the writing style itself. This story is loaded with amateur mistakes, from missing punctuation, blatant typos, repetitive word choice, comma splices, inconsistent formatting, and so on. These issues persist from beginning to end and steadily grew more and more distracting as I continued to read.

Next, we have the final ‘part’ of the story. What was an interesting and compelling plotline was rapidly reduced to some of the worst kind of fanfiction. Gradually, CalebH abandons the tried and true diary formatting in favor of regular, third person narration, which only makes the narrative missteps seem worse. Adding to that, where before everything made sense, all of a sudden Luna decides to go on a quest and bring along a bunch of Ponyville characters who, as far as we can tell from the story, have nothing to do with her whatsoever. Big Mac, Lyra and Bonbon are all randomly thrown into this quest, without any introduction, with no given reason, without even a scene for Luna to invite them along. Just all of a sudden boom, everypony’s going on a quest!

Uh… what?

Now, on to the quest itself. Although it was predicted fairly early in the story, the execution was terrible, not least due to its abundant fan-wanking and near-plagiaristic theft of Lord of the Rings. How bad is it? The last book is referred to as “The Unexpected Journey,”; the quest is given the title “There and Back Again”; Luna actually uses the “King under the mountain” line; and if that wasn’t blatant enough for you, at the end they fight a giant dragon by the name of Smaug. Add to that the idea that Luna only wins the fight via “The Magic of Friendship” (without any Elements to back her up) in a manner frustratingly repetitive of Twilight’s own revelation in The Elements of Harmony, and you’ve got one of the most uncreative, clichéd and downright drab endings ever. Oh, and I should not that the writing quality begins to decline precipitously near the end as well.

Frankly, I feel like the last part of the story was created purely so that a disinterested author, tired of working on the same story for ages, could put an end to the whole thing at last.

It’s a true shame, because the vast majority of this story was interesting and fascinating. Right up until the end of “War of Shadows” at around chapter 150 (of almost 180), I was engaged. Then the last book comes along to destroy what had been a great – if flawed – piece of fiction.

My recommendation to anyone reading this would be to give the story a read, but stop at chapter 153. Everything after it is not worth your time.

Bookshelf: Worth It


Stories for Next Week:

The Longest Day by LuminoZero
Twilight Sparkle and the Very Confusing Day by kudzuhaiku
Husklands by Nighttide (Requested by Nighttide)
A Ballad of Eeyup and Nope by Ambion (Re-Read)
The White Mare by Warren Hutch (Re-read)
Adopting Fluttershy by Flutterpriest (Completed Story)


Liked these reviews? Check out some others:

Paul's Thursday Reviews XVII
Paul's Thursday Reviews XVIII
Paul's Thursday Reviews XIX
Paul's Thursday Reviews XX
Paul's Thursday Reviews XXI
Jeremy's New Years Reviews!
Paul's Thursday Reviews XXII
Paul's Thursday Reviews XXIII
Paul's Thursday Reviews XXIV
Paul's Thursday Reviews XXV

Want me to review your story? Send me a request! Check my profile page for rules.

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Comments ( 17 )

Hmph, I really don't think I have space left on my RiL shelves. Unfortunately I really enjoy your blogs, so on the list they go!

I recently stumbled upon a story that I think you'll really like. I've enjoyed it for the most part so far, though unfortunately it is not completed and will likely not be completed for some time. When it is though I'm going to force you politely request that you review it.

Thanks for the crack reviews, best wishes to your aunt.

Dead Silver sounds a little like Turtledove's The Toxic Spell Dump in the magic background. I'll have to see if I can buy a copy.

You know, I dont' think I've read a story by The Descendant that I didn't like.

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

I find reviewing novels by fanfic authors a worthy cause.

3732776
Hear hear
(Says the fanfic author with a novel)

> chapter 150

o_<

Anyway, interesting reviews this week; it's always good to see the lines of ponyfic blur. I might have to give that reviewed novel a read myself, in a month or two when my schedule clears out.

Before people bombard me with review requests for their favorite original fiction messterpieces, I should point out that I will not be doing this often. This is an MLP-themed blog ...

Oh man, you do not even know how tempted that makes me to request a review of Quiet Boy and Moon Horse. It's totally not original fiction! Why, it was even posted on FIMFiction (and Equestria Daily)!

3732897
You've published OF? You need to link that from your profile page, mister. :V

Eh, OF by FF authors is fine by me.

And unrelated note: every time I read your Thursday reviews, it makes me want to work on Under A Silver Moon, because it's the only one of my stories that you are Not giving me any help on, and I am very much looking forward to the day that I can submit it.

3734199
It's not published yet; more precisely I have a manuscript in need of a prereader or two prior to the copy edit. Don't suppose you'd volunteer? :rainbowkiss:

Rest assured that when the final product shows up on Amazon and its ilk, you'll know. And if Luna ever returns my calls, then everyone will know. :scootangel:

3734680
Drop me a PM (or an email). I have enough commitments on my plate, but I'm open to at least discussing it and seeing if it catches my interest.

3732727
OR you could link me to it and I can put it in my Incompletes folder so that I'll be alerted when it updates.

This blog butchers your RiL, doesn't it?

3732757
Neither have I, really.

3732776
Glad you think so! It's about the only kind of OF novel I'm willing to review here.

3734199
Now you've got me curious about this Luna story...

Which reminds me, did you ever get around to reading/thinking about that concept I had a while back and which I will probably never make into reality?

3734636
I'm looking forward to when I get to read that, to e honest. Hurry up and write, you slow poke!
(He says while being a month behind in his schedule.)

3735541

That's too much effort, future me can deal with it. Here ya go, ya bum. The description isn't the best, but the story is pretty good. There's a couple things I'm not a huge fan of (that I'm sure you'd pick up on pretty quickly) but I'd say it's pretty close to Seashell / Ghost Lights.

Oh, and one hundred twenty six stories and counting on RiL. Damn these ponies, they drive me to drink more coffee.

3735860
Ah. I often considered adding that to my Incompletes list. Guess I should have listened to myself.

126? 126? I envy your RiL.

3735921

Glad I'm here to set you straight! :rainbowlaugh:

I take it your RiL is ten times bigger?

3736143
Nah, just three times.

3735541
Sorry, I owe you a response e-mail. Kinda dropped the ball on that in between the convention and the Writeoff round. Lemme see if I can get back to you after clearing out some RCL reading tonight.

...The quest scene in Diary of the Night was my favorite part. We must have polar opposite preferences. Might I critique your critiques? Have you ever heard of a compliment sandwich? For example, if I were to critique Sweet Slice of Cake I'd point what works first (the character development/interaction), then what doesn't work (the minimal conflict) and then what does work (the poignant moments). Your reviews come off as rather harsh and I don't think you intended to.

4311486
You're right in that I'm not trying to be harsh, but I won't sugarcoat things either, and I'm not going to go trying to interpret bad things in a vaguely good way just to make an author feel better.

That said, I'll keep your advice in mind. I get what you're suggesting and will look into trying it out.

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