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Critiques of Gurtle the Turtle


1) Mat Clarke did a critique of Gurtle the Turtle:


Gurtle the Turtle. A children’s story (with some adult themes) about the injustices that a world of talking vegetables and turtles are suffering through under an evil conquering tyrant.

This is an entertaining story that takes the reader on an adventurous journey with the protagonists through a cacophony of absurd yet funny puns.

The story was interesting and the characters animated. I wonder if this is to be a picture book or only text? As I think the reader may find it hard to follow the story and differentiate between each character. With any children’s story the characters are not going to be very filled out and therefore not with a strong personality. Lively and bright; yes, however.

Note: Apart from a few corrections, just watch out for repeating words too often straight after each other: ...Fred and Gurtle made good time as they walked briskly over the rolling hills, making good time...

Either use tabs or line breaks to separate each paragraph.

I’m not sure about children’s books, but using all caps in a sentence is generally not done. However, research this and see what you come up with.

N and M dashes are fine, however using them too often when a coma would do is inadvisable: ...“Here – listen to this...

The story would do very well with some pictures by a great artist :)



2) Geoff Stuart critiqued Gurtle the Turtle


Like the story and yep needs art work, I like the idea of overcoming the Tyrant cauliflower but you have included some elements like "Beer" with Jiminy getting rather surely and the use of violence "exploding cheese." Not too sure how a possible publisher may react to those elements if you can slip them in great but maybe change the beer to creamy soda?. I agree with Noel in regards to the dialogue, maybe add a "said Gurtle" and so forth so we can follow a bit more easily. I like it but shying away from some elements as a pure kids book.. though "Go the Fuck to sleep." got published ;)



3) Trevor Ball critiqued Gurtle the Turtle


I have read story several times now and each time, I appreciate it's flow and the imagination of the writer, there are very clever humorous lines in the dialogue. I especially enjoyed the dialogue and exchanges regarding the invisible blanket However I wasn't too sure who was the narrator and their perspective in the narrative. I also wasn't too sure of who was the targeted audience, it reads for young adults I think. I may have missed something in the text but I was confused by the new character coming in the final paragraph . Overall though it was an entertaining read that plays homage to Disney, Wizard of Oz, and classic fables. Its written in a healthy dose of wit and humour , it is on the silly side but good wholesome silly and fun.



Critiques of Sally the Coconut

1) Noel Anderson did a critique of Sally the Coconut:


Interesting story. I am reading it on my iPhone at work so I may have missed a bit so forgive anything I say as stupid if I’m not correct.  


Some thoughts I really liked Krane’s sensitivity. There was a real warmth and love (longtime love too) that rang true for me. I like stories about love and loss a lot, and how we deal with the end of any relationship is always a winner for me. Even if we forget to save our lover deliberately. 


Maybe I didn’t get as good a sense of Sally as I did Krane, and I struggled a little with where, what and how they were able to be having a conversation. Maybe for my taste I’d like that cleared up (or have I watched too much American TV - you can let me know if I have). 


In death are they united? A final twist would be nice after the realisation that he let her go and did nothing to stop it. But what that twist would be I don’t know? It might be good to reverse the lead just in those last moments and have Sally tell the last part. On that thought do you reveal how Sally died too early? 


A thought on Sally - what does she want in coming back? Is it retribution or is it some more from Krane. Is there something Krane still needs from her. Great work.


Last thought, and the most important one of all, setting up that we are on Australian turf was very nicely done.



2) Bill Van Oostan did a critique of Sally the Coconut:


I too like the aussie touch.


I do like Noel's idea of reversing the lead for the last bit. Sally does not come through as clearly as Krane and her motives are ambiguous to me. Perhaps intentionally. I think a little filling out of Sally's character would enhance. Nice to have a hint that there was to be a future even if there was no reconciliation.


Enjoyed it.


3) Geoff Stuart did a critique of Sally the Cocnut


Really like this piece. Reminds me some what of a Bradbury stile short story and really like the emotion of the main character, it feels real. Well done on the twist too is plausible. I would hope that you submit this one for comps or publishing.



Critiques of The Lyrics

1) Maree Collie did a critique of The Lyrics:


This is the first time that I have offered up a 'critique'. I do not know what one expects and I have submitted thoughts that I would like to receive if I had a story being critiqued.


The Lyrics: It is a great story and one wants to know what happens next – why the character is in such a predicament. It reads well. I don’t know about editing but it’s something that I must learn.


I don’t know if you want to be made aware of little things or structural things. I wonder about long sentences that have 2 ideas contained within ie. There is an itch I cannot scratch, a small shaft of steel is embedded under my skin. Also, you say that … ‘the slow rise and fall of a bellows forcing air into me’... later in the story your other self is imploring you to breath…

Some grammatical things: propped up right – upright Diffuse light – should that be ‘diffused light’ I am lost in swirl – lost in a swirl? neither my tongue or jaw responds to my command to for the word – should ‘or’ be ‘nor’? possibly passed out drunk.” Came the answer. – should this read…..drunk” came the answer. [?] “Whats happened?” “What’s happened?” there is moment of stillness - ‘a moment’ and this is me comeback - come back as in return rather than a reply [?] only thoughts strong – thought A surge pain sears through me and feels like a burning poker has been pressed against my head. I feel his thoughts reach me beyond the surge of pain. – You have used the words ‘surge, pain’ twice in the one sentence – is this what you intended? my hand gently rest on my leg – rests “Your out of surgery – should that read “You’re out of surgery…”? reset and I will it it to fire – bottom of page 2 - there are 2 'it'. burning with in me. – should that be within … Did you comeback to save me?” - should you have a space there come & back? “You feel guilty cause your relieved – should that be you’re relieved You can’t change her so your here to try change me – you’re [?]


It is a good story and I hope that I have helped you somehow.


Cheers Maree



2) Trevor Ball did a critique of The Lyrics:


I was very taken by this story, it really grabbed my attention with short crisp sentences, dramatic pacing and interweaving another story that runs parallels around key themes of lost, powerlessness and recovery . I found myself hooked on every word.



3) Rita Leiva did a critique of The Lyrics:

I would try to move up the dialogue, so there is action at the beginning. It feels like a lot of introspection and description about surroundings and thoughts. I can understand why you put it there - to create the scene and mind of the character? You need to shorten it and some how bring all of that into action... To draw us in. But I liked it. Not sure if I'm making sense - a little tired



Critiques of Mad Gun

1) Maree Collie did a critique of Mad Gun:


Its such an interesting piece of prose. It certainly is very interesting. It reads more like a short story than what I would think of as a novel.


2) Samantha Knight did a critique of Mad Gun:

I really loved the detail, right from the beginning it was intriguing and very visual. I would have liked more detail on his surroundings, however, maybe a tid-bit of his conversation on the phone too? I was curious about that. "Stranger was the person next to the car walking back and forth while seeming confused," the "seeming confused" part is awkward and wordy, it jilted me from the story. Maybe "in a confused manner," "seemingly confused", etc. Or maybe simply scratch "confused" and describe their actions and mannerisms (we will get the point). "He squinted, as if it may improve his eyesight," I like this, so true, we all do it no matter our age! I really like the realistic details, however small. I smiled at that. "He quick(LY) walked through the bank entrance;" try to avoid petty avoidable mistakes like that, it throws your reader off. Always proof-read once or twice. I do that too sometimes despite proof-reading, so at the very least, just so you know to edit that :) I thought this story definitely had a "pull" to it, had a building suspense that kelp me reading (and not just because it's short), but then just ended with a seemingly predictable ending, but I want to know more about why? It was a robbery, yes, but it's not a unique situation and it's definitely not the first time someone has robbed a bank, so what makes this story any different? For a bit I thought he was going to commit suicide, you could have almost went with that for a bit longer, made us (or the main observer in the story) feel bad for the shooter, then surprise us with the opposite. Just food for thought. Good read.


Critiques of The Long and Winding Road

1) Samantha Knight did a critique of The Long and Winding Road:


I really enjoyed this little story; it contained just enough realistic humour, was relatable (wanting for the wine, liquor for courage, etc.), and written well, very smooth. There were just a few things I noticed or wished it delve into more: Jude, who is Jude? This person is mentioned twice, making them seem relatively important or unavoidable in the narrator's life; little background maybe? And the narrator seems pretty intent and serious with their writing, which begs the question, why would he/she "stuff [their] stories in one pocket?" In my experience as a writer, I cherish my work and if my stories do escape my laptop/USB stick, they certainly wouldn't be loose or stuffed anywhere, especially if I were trying to get noticed in the publishing world; no publisher would read potential publishing material on a crinkled up piece of paper. In my opinion anyway. Lastly, the narrator says that they were impressed with "Alex Patric's" story, half a paragraph goes on about his efforts, etc. What was it about? What made the impression? I'm curious. Other than those few things, I thought this story had a good hook from the beginning, and was to the point (great for flash fiction)!

2) Cole Dazell did a critique of The Long and Winding Road:

First off, I really enjoyed the mature vibe I got from this story. The subtle use of booze was well executed and the humor expressed by the characters was subtle while remaining noticeable. There are a couple grammatical things I noticed, for example: Whenever you're writing dialogue, I believe it's proper to have a comma after the last word and before the closing quotation (unless it ends in a question mark or exclamation). Ex: 1. "Hand me a beer," he said as he scratched his beard, "and a smoke if you got one." 2. "Are the kids coming over?" She asked, a concerned look painting her face. All dialogue should be a new paragraph and be its own paragraph unless the information that follows the dialogue directly correlates to it. Other than the grammatical things I pointed out, I found your story well written and considerably enjoyable! If you have any questions, hit me up :)

Critiques of Insomnia

1) "  " did a critique of Insomnia:


Still to come

Critiques of Dirty Deeds Done Soapy & Cheap

1) "  " did a critique of Dirty Deeds Done Soapy & Cheap:


Still to come

Gurtle 1
Coconut 1
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