Peer Review by seaomelette (United Arab Emirates)

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A Shortened Beginning

By: Mia2004


My mind aches at the thought of being in this tiring class room, day after day. My dad pats me on the back and smiles at the principle. He thinks I'm awesome; a real try-hard. I don't open my mouth to tell him he's wrong. Instead I smile and wink at one of the pretty girls in the back. I flick my hair over my shoulder and ask my dad if he can go now. 
Heading out to the car my eyes search for Michael, only to remember he's not here. He's kilometers away.
My feet give out. I am pretty sure I hear my dad call my name as I fall towards road. I also think I saw an angel next to me. I see her eyes first. Like every love story, she grabs my arm to steady me, laughing at my embarrassment. 
"You good, princess?" Her hair is the color of blood, shining bright in the afternoon sun. I have to restart my heart. My breathing is slow and unsteady. Her eyes are the cutest color of blue I have seen since my mums. 
"Hi, my names Elizabeth, I will be showing you around today" 
My dad turns to me questioningly, 'are you okay with me going?'
I nod and turn to Elizabeth, sticking my hand out confidently,
"My names Emma."

Soooo the title is kind of misconceiving... but I like the base story... anyone got ideas for the next step :) xx

Peer Review

I really love the narrator voice you've got going on throughout the piece--flippant, relatable, humorous--and you've definitely gotten my interest. I'd totally excited to read more!

Honestly, considering this is an albeit brief beginning to this awesome writing project you've started, there isn't much I'd comment on except sentence variety and a few very minor grammatical errors. Don't take me wrong, I really don't have any issue with short sentences stacked up on each other. I think paragraphs as these can be super entertaining to read. However, I feel that this piece could be even more impactful if you considered varying your sentence length and structure. I really loved your story, but I think its flow could be improved substantially if you varied sentence length. Rather than shooting out uniform sentences, I suggest trying different shapes and sizes (i.e. short...long...long...short...long...long...long). Of course, you don't have to keep a fixed formula of sentence length in mind. The key thing to remember is to introduce variety. Imagine that you're decorating cupcakes. Each cupcake goes FLOOP on the table as you decorate it with sprinkles and icing galore. So far, you've made a row of uniform cookies and cream cupcakes, with Oreos sticking out of the vanilla icing like two panda ears. What's next? How about a rainbow cupcake between these two pandas? A bright yellow banana split cupcake between these other two? As not to ramble about cupcakes, the general idea is to interpolate different sentences in a paragraph to make it POP. In my writing experience, I find the best way to determine whether a paragraph needs spicing up is to read it aloud. Once you've finished writing your first draft and getting a preliminary skeleton out on the page, try reading your piece aloud. You don't have to be Morgan Freeman on Audible or whatever, but just try reading aloud slowly and naturally. You'll find that you'll be able to catch any monotonous-sounding paragraphs, awkwardly-structured sentences, and even minor grammar mistakes you missed while reading silently. Lastly, regarding ideas, I'm not sure what general direction you'd like Emma and Elizabeth to go as the plot thickens, but so far it seems to me they'll be an item for sure! I've never tried writing romance before (though I read a lot of it), but maybe you could have Elizabeth show Emma around the school grounds, while she attempts to engage Emma in conversation. Emma, completely flabbergasted, replies awkwardly....and well, that's up to you to explore! Get that tension f-i-e-r-y.

Reviewer Comments

I hope I was able to help, and I can't wait to read the next installment, or this piece again if you choose to revise it. Keep up the fantastic writing!! (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧