|Reviews for Words of Wisdom|
| DarkHorse26 5/5/13 . chapter 1
Late review...again. Dialogue-only challenge? Well, nothing much to say, but I love Serge telling Guile to think positive. and forget about his past.. There's a moral advice hidden within... Lovely work!
| Crow's Talon 12/19/12 . chapter 1
I love the interaction between Serge and Guile here. It's consistent with the other ways you write their characters and is a real pleasure to read. SPAG is nice and solid, an a lot comes through in just words. I'm glad to see Serge giving Guile sage advice here, especially to see the positive side of everything. Your Guile is such a chameleon of a character. I really like him. Nice job, and good work with the challenge!
| Edhla 11/28/12 . chapter 1
This is really sweet, and gives me the warm fuzzies, particularly the end and the butterfly analogy :)
My only suggestion for concrit is to make sure every part of your dialogue shows one of two things: plot or character. Also, I believe you're from Indonesia? If you're ESL, I have to say, your English is excellent, but an English-as-first-language beta may be able to help you iron out dialogue so that it sounds more natural (and less correct :D )
"Many people do think that you are interesting!" Yep, I've gone all mushy. How lovely this is- it's made my afternoon. :)
| BlondieLocks 11/27/12 . chapter 1
As promised (albeit a little delayed) I’m more than happy to leave a review to one of your stories.
First of all, I want to really thank you for getting me involved in The Reviews Loung, Too forum. I found it through your profile page, and if you had never reviewed my own story in the first place, I may have never found it. So thanks a lot.
Second of all, you have a nice little challenge drabble going for you. What I enjoyed most of all about this one-shot was the message you inscribed into the fabric of your writing. It’s nice to actually see a story with a meaning that conveys the meaning so well. In this case, I felt that you conveyed best that you’re past actions or personality does not make you the person that you are today, but instead it is the things you do and say in the present that matters most. Being yourself and being positive is what matters most, not wallowing in the past and regretting things you cannot change. Beautifully mastered here.
My only criticism would be that the dialogue, at times, felt stiff and occasionally forced. Several reviewers have already mentioned the flow of the conversation, and I think if you were to work on that you would have a really smart one-shot on your hands.
Also one other criticism that I may add, I felt that Serge was a bit too out of character for my liking. I do definitely get that he is a silent protagonist and so he is sort of a blank slate for us author’s to work with, but I just could not really see him saying things like “Don't get depressed so fast, my friend!” The dialogue seemed just a tad too formal, especially for a character like Serge. Other than that though, really upstanding job. I enjoyed reading this one-shot a lot.
One last thing, I would really like to commend you on your use of proper grammar and sentence structure. I read in your profile that you are not a native English speaker, and I really think that being able to write so well in a language that is second to you is truly a remarkable accomplishment. I can’t even imagine beginning to string sentences together in Italian or Greek, two languages I, myself, have studied in the past. So really I applaud you, you set the bar for other people to strive for excellence in language. Great job!
And of course, I feel especially tied to your work since you seem to be the only other active Chrono Cross fan at the moment, lol. We Cross fans have to stick together!
| Anonymous 11/12/12 . chapter 1
I like the positive message in this wise little story. It teaches us to look at the positive side of something. Honestly, whether Guile is interesting or not, it actually depends on how we view him. For me, he doesn't have to be Magus to be interesting, but a backstory and role would have been sufficient to make him more interesting. If there isn't even, it doesn't matter because it's up to the fanfic authors to elaborate his backstory (he truly is a wild card for fanfic authors). I don't know how people view him, but anyway, it is indeed, a lame reason to brand Guile as a boring character just because he doesn't have any backstory. I hope that you're going to write more about Guile!
| Don't Mess With Aria 11/5/12 . chapter 1
This is interesting. I don't know the characters, but the dialogue seems to flow well. You also used the names enough so that there was no confusion, even though it's a dialogue-only challenge. There was one line I thought was awkward- the line about passing a night thinking about the problem. Something about the phrasing in that felt off. Otherwise, good job.
| Empress Nightshade 11/1/12 . chapter 1
-It's amazing how dialogue can stand on its own if down properly. I once had to read a book for school that was like this; I wish I could remember the title. I will say that the short phrases read better. It was more like a quip. When it got to the longer bits of dialogue, it slowed the pace down. Otherwise it was good.
| MadameGiry25 10/29/12 . chapter 1
I have a feeling that familiarity with this fandom would have helped me a great deal in this particular fic. The mood felt a little formal, specifically the speech patterns themselves. A little awkward, as though they really didn't know each other. But, that might just be my lack of knowledge when it comes to these characters.
Overall, this was interesting. I do wish that there had been something there to set the scene, but that would have been impossible for the challenge, I suppose.
| SunnyStorms 10/27/12 . chapter 1
Kudos for taking on a challenge that can be pretty hard to pull off. You would think dialogue would be easy to write because talking is something we do everyday, but convincing dialogue, in my experience, remains a challenge to pull off. I liked the content of your conversation. It had purpose and actually managed to capture some character growth in the process - moving from a curious inquiry to revealing an insecurity about one of the characters and then having the other person help him to see the positive side and in the end the conversation strengthened the bond between the two. Some of the phrasing, however, is a bit awkward in that they don't sound like something two guys would say to each other in the setting of a bar. Try to think about the way guys talk when they're in a setting like that. And also consider the characters' background and personality - that influences how well spoken they would be. I did a quick google-search of Guile and his wiki entry says he "display[s] exceedingly refined and cultured behavior and speech." I don't know the canon material very well so I don't know if this is accurate or if it's even the characterization you're going for, but let's say for example that it is. Then you probably don't want him to say "Huh?" but use a more refined reaction, like "Pardon?" instead. Little details like that in dialogue help to show the type of person a character is, but can be really tricky to do.
| RedheadedMarina 10/27/12 . chapter 1
Well done, especially for a challenge like this! I thought you handled it well, even though it was all dialogue I never felt lost or unsure about which character was speaking.
The arc of the story was very sweet and uplifting. The questions Serge and Guile discuss are universal, and you do a good job of making their pain believable but not over the top. Good job!
| Verran 10/27/12 . chapter 1
To portray the thoughts, feelings and personalities of two characters just through their dialogue is much harder than it looks, and an excellent challenge.
I felt that the dialogue started awkwardly with a sudden, direct question about something quite personal, but then the restriction of the challenge forbidding you to even set the scene, I think opening a dialogue-only piece would probably be the most difficult part to do. Certainly something I'd have difficulty over. However, it became more and more natural as it went on. Guile moved from initially refusing to answer the question, through being persuaded to answer it, to finally accepting Serge's advice. And Serge found Guile's answer unsettling, wavers for a moment on how he can help, and ends up putting across an eloquent, well reasoned argument.
As far as bringing out the accuracy of their personalities through their dialogue, I can't really comment because I'm not familiar with the characters or the fandom. Certainly it was clear which character was speaking through *what* they were saying, although not necessarily by *how* they were saying it.
By this I mean speech patterns, the way they talk. Things like vocabulary, whether they are long-winded about how they say something, or whether they're short and to-the-point; what emotions they're feeling while they're saying it - all fills out the characters through their speech.
To me, Serge and Guile felt like very similar personalities in this piece, because their speech patterns were similar. Maybe they *are* similar personalities, in which case, that's fine. But if they aren't, then that might be an area you could think about when writing those characters in the future.
One example of where you did distinguish Guile's speech from Serge's quite clearly was this: "I…I still don't know what I'm searching for."
That little stammer at the beginning of this sentence illustrated the fact that he was unsure of himself, just as clearly as his words did - you showed his emotion through his dialogue, you showed he was slowly being broken down by Serge's questioning.
A good response to a tough challenge.
Hope this helps!
| ckorkows 10/27/12 . chapter 1
"even until my eyes become red because of lack of sleep" Personally I would write it with 'as' in it - 'even as my eyes become red...' It makes it more current.
I really enjoyed the beginning of this little one-shot. There was a question and Serge was intent on an answer. I don't know how much of Guile's answer was canon, but I definitely like the idea that he may be an evil wizard and simply not know it.
For me the end was a little lacking. I think that Serge got a little caught up in the gooeyness of resolution and just started blurting out things that would make Guile feel better. While I like the illusion of the butterfly, I am not certain that two boys (or men) would be using it to describe one another. I almost wish it would have ended at, "Don't get depressed so fast, my friend! There's nothing wrong with you."
I know you had a word count to hit, but maybe you could have done so with changing the dialogue to bar talk. Guys are like that. They have an issue, they briefly discuss it and get confirmation from another guy, and then they move on. They don't tend to dwell on things as much as women do (There are actual physical differences in the brain that support this idea) and are a lot more of a get over it and move on type. It would have been nice to see a little of that here, especially as the conversation must have been awkward and embarrassing for Guile.
Overall your grammar and spelling were good. I noticed no glaring errors and this helped with the flow of the story. Dialogue is often very difficult to write, it can become stilted or turn into an info dump so quickly, but for the most part you showed mastery of how two characters can interact with only words. Very well done.
Enjoy the Ride,
| Aeci 10/27/12 . chapter 1
This was a nice answer to the dialogue-only challenge!
Although it was subtle, you've utilized onomatopoeia quite well - the "humph" early on in the story told me everything I needed to know about Guile's demeanor upon Serge's question. And although the challenge said you could only use dialogue, I was still able to imagine what the characters were doing.
The tone slowly progressed from something casual - a question that Serge may have thought demanded a quick answer - into something more reflective, and I liked the way you've done this.
I do think Guile's refusal to explain why he wore a mask, after saying he would if Serge would "keep his promise", was a little jarring though. The way Guile said "If you insist then…" told me he was going to spill right then and there, but instead we get a little more hesitation. This final bit of reluctance could be removed (or moved to before the line "If you insist…"), because from where it is right now, it seems to drag the hesitancy on for too long.
I couldn't find any spelling or punctuation errors!
| ReadingBlueWolf 10/26/12 . chapter 1
I like how uplifting it is. The positive message in this about not seeing your true worth is amazing. The dialogue was nice. i think you did a great job with this challenge. I also liked how you kept Guile questioning himself the whole time until the end. He didn't start to waver until he was shown he was a good person. Good job!
| Rainhealsme 10/25/12 . chapter 1
Hm. This is a rather interesting challenge you took on. I think you did an excellent job executing it. Not only that, but this little challenge was also a learning experience for me. I had no idea Guile er...Magnus wore a mask, so that was pretty refreshing to find out. I would have love a description of the mask, but think that would have broken the rules of the challenge not wouldn't it? :p
The conversation between the two characters I like for a number of reason. However, the main reason would because it goes more in depth about Guile's character. He talked about parts of his past that I knew nothing about and it's gotten me curious about the other characters about well. I'll have to keep the info about him that I learned in mind whenever I read your other Chrono Cross fiction since I know have a small, but better understanding for this fandom. All in all, I enjoyed reading this and I can't wait to see what else you have planned for this fandom. Cheers! xXKiraUzumakiXx