Let's Learn from Each Other's Stories!

No problem!

I was worried that my review was a bit too harsh, but I’m glad it helped you out. You can use my examples and you don’t have to credit me. I think they fit in with your story!

Also, that cover is much better. I think it’s a way higher quality than the last ones. One suggestion is that I recommend having the outfits signify something about the parts they play in the story. Something subtle, like having the dead brother wear mostly black (representing death) and the main character wearing something like pale yellow or pink to represent hope or whatever. You don’t have to do that, I just think it’ll add a little extra oomph to the overall story. But it’s not important, haha!

And you don’t have to credit me at the end of your story chapters, but if it makes you feel better, go ahead!

Happy writing! :DD

2 Likes

Yes, I’m working on that, I just figured that the if elif and else don’t work with overlays :sweat_smile:

1 Like

That’s actually a pretty good idea!! I put Ana and Matthew to have the same bracelet but it doesn’t show :joy:
I’ll try that! Thanks!!

2 Likes

It doesn’t work with overlays? I think it should work with overlays, but I might be wrong. Can you show script in another thread or pm?

1 Like

That’s true. That’s where beta testers come in, lol!

Also, I’d just like to thank you for joining in and doing the review process! It’s so much fun reviewing with other people and hearing their opinions on people’s stories!

2 Likes

Yeah, I made a topic asking why it didn’t work and they said it does not work with overlays, so I’m using gain :heart:

1 Like

It’s pretty fun reviewing stories. Having a specific and in depth review with lots of feedback helps a lot. Being told what someone didn’t like or did like about parts of your story gives a new perspective. Like maybe I messed up a bit or I can improve on this thing.

2 Likes

True, true, and true.

That’s why I personally enjoy constructive criticism!

1 Like

Ohhh. I think I understand what you mean. I used gains too for diverting routes, but I have been able to alter the scene slightly with overlays. I have this scene where you can find a clue, giving you something to link with the only clue you have. I used gains, so the routes could diverge, but also was able to add or remove other overlays, making the paths different.

1 Like

I like it too. I usually try doing chapter by chapter reviews, but I realize that could be time consuming if you’re supposed to do a whole review for at least three chapters of a story.

1 Like

Story title: Blind To Blood
Author Name: Uglygh0stt
Genre: Romance? I need to switch it to fantasy probably.
Description: Claudia’s life isn’t the same after meeting her two new next door neighbors, the twins, Silas and Raphael Harris.
The twins also just so happen to be harboring a bloody secret.
*CC *LL

So I’m just looking for honest feedback and criticism. I’ve read over it countless times and I’ve even had my husband look at it. I know that the reader isn’t going to have a clue as to whats going on in my brain with the writing an planning so I’ve been careful to try and keep that in mind so that I’m not jumping around and writing a gappy story.

2 Likes

Can you use the application form, so we can get a better idea of what you’re looking for and the type of feedback you want? I’ll try to get your story soon when I have the time.

2 Likes

Of course! I’m sorry.

1 Like

It’s all good!

Thank you so much for this! :heart:

Story title: Motherly
Cover (optional):


Author Name: Drama_Club_Girl_25
Genre: Drama
Description: Cassandra is a single mom, left to raise 3 kids, all by herself when her husband leaves he. Will she be able to defy the odds? Or will she crack under the weight of all her stress?
What would you like us to focus on: Please focus on the plot, character, directing, and length of episodes.

2 Likes

Hi!
I would love some feedback!
Title: I made the devil cry
Author Šebule




I would like to know if it’s interesting, if you would pick it in the app to read it based on the cover And description, if you would - like a reader - continue reading it, if you can understand the plot…
Thank you!

2 Likes

Story Title: She knows best
Author: @BEEBS07
Chapters read: 3

Description

First Impressions

After reading the description, I don’t really know how I feel. There are some grammatical errors. For example, in the first sentence, after the word mother, there should be a period. After that, the word “will” should be capitalize to make a new sentence with a question mark. For the warnings and features, you can just put them in parantheses.

Example

Brainwashed tennager Nicola has suffered from years of abuse at the hands of her mother. Will she be able to find a way out? (Violence, Self Harm, Limited CC, Choices matter)

Introduction

Thoughts

The introduction felt very long. I liked the use of the tappable overlay and the scene of the puppeteer at the very beginning. However, the beginning still felt very long. There was a lot of information to read, causing the story to progress very slowly. A lot of the information could be shown with warning splashes or toasters to define some words. It would make things run more smoothly and more effectively.

I understand you’re handling heavy subject matter, and I think the best way to convey that’s in your story is through splashes. It would capture the reader’s eye with an image. The color palette may produce a certain mood/tone that would let readers know the gravity of the issue.

I like the scene where it contrasts the MC’s mom with another mom. You can see the difference between the two, showing the effects a caretaker can have on a child based on their interactions and actions.

Grammar

Thoughts

There’s a lot of grammar mistakes throughout the episode, making it hard to read the story. A lot more punctuation is need to help indicate pauses, complete thoughts, and make a sentence flow better. A good amount of the sentences in the story are run ons, capitalization issues, and have little to no punctuation.

There’s great proofreaders and beta readers on the forums that can help check your grammar. If you’re unable to find one, run your story through a grammar checker. By improving the story’s grammar, it will help readers better understand the plot of the story and what characters are trying to say.

Transitions

Thoughts

Sometimes, transitions are smooth, but not always. Characters pop into scenes from time to time, and some scenes don’t fade entirely. Other times the scene fades into the next scene before the next scene starts. There’s some really good guides by people that I’ll link in directing.

Directing

Thoughts

I found the intro scene of Lynne coming in to be pretty interesting. I think if more zooms were used to simulate the puppeteer controlling the puppet, it would make it look more clean.

There’s instances of characters popping in/teleporting, slightly disrupting the flow of things. The zooms during the beginning of chapter 1 were disorienting and choppy. They could be more fast. Try to incorporate more zooms through the use of zoom on x y in 0 for conversation.

Characters slide to their locations more times than once. You can avoid this from happening by giving a set amount of time for the characters to move to the location.

Speechbubbles are kind of all over the place. A lot of times they’re attatched to the speaking person, but other times they’re not. At the end of the second chapter, the speechbubble remained in the same place for a good portion of the third chapter. You can solve this by using @speechbubble reset. Also, make sure the characters don’t use talking animations over each other.

The characters who are children look really small. Like very small that it makes things look kind of awkward. It would be good if you sized them up, but don’t size them up where they look like an adult. Do lower than the standard size of characters, but don’t do Thumbelina size.

Here’s some good threads for cleaning up directing and implementing more advanced ones.

HOW TO: Make your directing better than average

💎 JemU776's Tutorials LIST (Full) 💎

Dialogue

Thoughts

Dialogue was very long and drawn out many times. It stagnates the pace and flow of the story, making it not have a steady state. I found myself not being able to really read dialogue because the boxes were so long that I kind of gave up. I considered some things while reading, realizing something big.

The story would be practically unreadable for tablet users. Since there’s a difference in how stories get presented to tablet users than phone users, it causes issues for tablet users because they might not be able to see the entirety of the story. I haven’t tried it on my tablet before, but there is a guidebox that helps show a green box. Within the green box is where tablet users would see the story. Since some speechbubbles extended to the bottom of my phone screen, that means tablet users won’t be able to view it, making them miss the context of scenes.

There’s also this problem of narration being overbearing at times. The story at times feel more tell than show. Narration makes the scene more confusing at times and disjointed if it takes a good part of the scene.

Extra Notes

Extras
  • The episodes feel kind of short, and the pacing is off at times. I found myself being confused at what was going on at times.
  • I didn’t include the character section for this specific review because I felt like it might not be necessary. I haven’t read the entire story, but I did check out the fanmail to confirm what I was thinking. I just want to say thank you for making this story. I might have been harsh in the review, but genuinely, thank you. It’s not too often that you see a more accurate portrayal of situations like this, so I’m glad you did this for mental awareness. I hope you’re doing good and still fighting through.

If you have any questions or need clarification on things, just ask.

1 Like

Story title: Ring Of Life
Author Name: Emma
Genre: fantasy
Description: A ring. It keeps you alive, it kills you without. When taken away, the former owner dies. If you are chosen, there is no coming back. Can you complete your mission?
What would you like us to focus on? I know there are some directing mistakes, but I am still learning how to direct, but I would like to know what is good and bad. If the concept is clear etc

Story Title: The Key Holder
Author: @Goji
Chapters read: 3
Description

First Impressions

The description is pretty good, but it could be better. I like how it doesn’t reveal the whole plot and uses part of the title in it. There’s a slight grammatical mistake in it. I think it needs improvement though to draw the audience in more.

Max is living with guilt. Riley is living with anger. What will happen when fate brought them together? Will they be each other’s key holder?

The description sounds like it could be the description of many other stories except for the key holder part. Since I haven’t started reading it yet while writing this first impression, it makes me wonder if the world involves a concept tied to the words key holder. I think an interesting thing to put or rather not put in a description is character names. It might be better to leave who are the main characters ambigious. Think of the description as a pitch to the audience. You need to capture their attention through the cover and the description.

Example

He’s trapped within his mind due to insurmountable guilt. Her anger clouds her judgement, causing her grief. When fate brings them together, will they be the key to the other’s problems?

Introduction

Thoughts

I kind of got jumpscared when music/sound started playing all of sudden. I advise putting your splashes for sound, music, and warnings before the story starts, so the reader knows what they’re getting into first. This would let readers who don’t like those effects to turn their sound down or turn off their ringer. Some readers might be reading in public places while others might not want to hear loud sound effects.

You could try to incorporate the CC of the MCs more fluidly. For example, Riley could be cleanning in the hotel room’s bathroom. She goes to clean the mirror, and she starts to wipe it to get a more clear image. That could be where CC of Riley is done, and it helps lessen the sort of tell than show feel. It introduces us to her and how she cleans hotel rooms from time to time. With Ryan, his sister could Facetime him. Once we go to his perspective, we can then change his appearance.

I like the music choices for these scenes, but I feel weird about it at times. I’ll explain it more within the transitions section. I like the interactions between the main characters and the side characters they know so far.

I think a major thing that I’ve noticed so far is the amount of telling and not showing it through dialogue or actions. For example, during the scene of where Riley takes care of Thea’s son, Lukas, she narrates how she usually takes care of him whenever Thea has a date. You can show this detail through dialogue instead of narration.

Riley could be like “whatcha up to now, squirt?” or ask him about what he wants to do now. Then he could respond. Try to show more of how she’s relaxed and good with kids through dialogue or her interactions with Lukas instead of telling the reader she’s that way. I just felt like some scenes ended too soon without any real developments.

Another example is the ice cream parlor. When the first customer comes in to talk to Joey, Riley narrates again about how Joey knows she’s not comfortable with strangers. I like the interaction before where Joey was like I got this.

However, there is still times where narration can be easily shown through another medium. When Riley talks about Joey constantly switching jobs, we could have a flashback of the countless jobs or have Riley list off the amount of jobs Joey has quit over the years when Joey mentions the grocery store. If Riley knows this information, would she really be that shocked about Joey quitting the grocery store if she constantly switches jobs?

Grammar

Thoughts

There’s little to no grammar issues from what I’ve seen. Just try to double check and make sure everything is clear and makes sense. You can do this through a grammar check, proofreader, or beta reader.

Transitions

Thoughts

The transition between different music is awkward. Like in multiple scenes, the music just stops, causing this awkward silence. The next scene comes with some new or the same music before stopping like the scene before, creating a cycle. In order to enhance and improve the transition between new audio pieces, you need to use more of volume commands, so it can go down steadily or up. Use commands like volume music 0 2000. That mean it’ll go down to 0 in 2000. The next scene could have new music, so in line after the music line, put something like volume music 5 2000 in order to raise the volume whenever that scene starts.

Scenes end too early sometimes. I like the use of fades and the occassional iris, but I feel like you transition off some scenes too early. Like some scenes end awkwardly with the characters just standing there. For example, in episode 2, Riley returns the book to Hanna and Sally. They thank her, and they say they’re going to head off to class. Then it just fades there with all three of them standing. It feels kind of unsatisfying, and there’s nothing that shows the impact it has on Riley. The scene could have ended with the two girls heading off with Riley standing there awkwardly thinking about how she averted any possible crisis. There’s a lot more scenes that end awkwardly after the characters say their last pieces of dialogue.

Directing

Thoughts

For the most part, the directing is pretty smooth, but there are some bumps in the road.

I noticed some layering issues, specifically during the scene before Riley runs to the bathroom. When we panned to her working near the pool, her foot was on top of the guy who was in front of her. You can fix this by having Riley move to another layer that’s less than the guy’s layer.

Use more overlays in your story. I noticed the first scene when Mr. Thomas came in that there was no chair for him to sit. Once Max and him started going down, I imagined Mr. Thomas being on his knees for the rest of the meeting. You can add a chair from the Episode catalog, get one from a pretty cool art shop on the forums, or find a chair yourself on a public domain image website. If you want to have him talk using a stand animation, just zoom more on his face to emulate the illusion of him sitting.

Incorporate more zooms during conversations, so the scene flows better, and we know who we should focus on.

There’s some common mistakes like characters popping in from time to time, characters sliding, and speech bubbles not being placed right. The scene with cars driving didn’t feel all that smooth.

I recommend checking out JemU776‘s tutorial list and cece_hunter’s awesome thread about making your directing above average for these kinds of issues and to make a story flow better.

Dialogue

Thoughts

The dialogue was pretty good, but I think it gets slightly overshadowed by slightly overbearing narration. Since dialogue shows us a lot about a character’s mannerisms, opinions, and beliefs, it’s important to incorporate more fluid dialogue for readers to connect to the characters.

There could also be more variation in syntax and punctuation to help distinguish characters from each other.

I picture Lukas as a hyperactive child, so it might make sense to give him more exclamation points at times when he gets really excited or shorter sentences for when he’s hyped.

In contrast, Riley seems more laidback, so she might use more periods with longer sentences than his. When she gets nervous or uncomfortable about crowds, use more stutters, shorter sentences, and awkward animations to exemplify how she feels.

Another thing to note is make sure every character uses a speaking animation when they speak. If we can see their back, you can use any regular animation you want. If they’re eating, you could have them take a bite, pause for a beat, and have them speak using a speak animation. I noticed some characters didn’t do more speaking animations when it went to their next sentence.

Characters

Thoughts

I’m going to keep it down to short list of characters that showed up a lot. Some character might have a couple of sentences.

Riley - She seems very reserved, and something might have happened to her in the past. I found it confusing when she was willing to accept Joey’s offer to go to the mall. Like even if there’s not going to be a lot of people there, there’s still going to probably be a good amount of people. The only things I know about her is she works multiple jobs, she’s good with kids, she likes baking, and she doesn’t feel comfortable with strangers. Based on this knowledge, I’m confused about why she’d accept the offer.

Max - I know more about Riley than I do about Max tbh. He’s an event planner, a bachelor, and he has siblings. I just didn’t find him all that memorable tbh.

Thea - She seems nice. I just feel like she’s kind of one dimensional.

Lukas - He’s a kid who loves sweets, and he likes Riley.

Joey - She’s Riley’s friend who actively tries to get Riley to come out of her shell more. She seems laidback and helpful.

Extra Notes

Extras
  • Based on the description, I thought the story would seem more serious at first. As I kept reading up to chapter 3, it felt like the description doesn’t match up with the story so far. Maybe it gets revealed later on in the story, but it just felt like there was no indication of Riley’s anger or Max’s guilt. I don’t know how it affects their daily lives or how they function. The only things that I can think of is how Riley doesn’t have a social life, and Max is single for reasons.
  • Biggest thing is developing characters more through dialogue and actions. I don’t have a real grasp on any of the characters. Every second of the story could be used to reveal the characters for who they are. Don’t overuse narration to explain things. Just show those things instead of telling us. The only character that felt slightly complex was Riley.
  • There’s a lot of promise in the story, and I definitely enjoyed the mood of the story. The background choices were good too. I’m interested in what’s going on with Riley. I hope she’s able to achieve her aspirations.
  • As I look at the scenes, I noticed something very major. The background characters caught my eye. A lot of the background characters were generic characters from the Writer Portal. This may turn some people off your story. I suggest editing those specific characters and outfits, so they look less generic. If you need help with outfits or character design, you can check out outfit shops and ask for background characters.

I hope this helps.

Hi,

Regarding the music transition, I used to do “volume music 0 2000”, then when I will use a new music for the next scene, I would do it “volume music 80 0”. However, it turns out that the music overlaps… so I later changed it to “music off”. Do you think it would be better if I add music off after the volume fades?

Then the dialogues, I was having a hard time to draw out the scenes. I will see what I can do about it.

Yes, that is right. I hope this would be enough for the readers to continue reading… The reasons will later be revealed on chapter 9-10.

Thank you so much! This is definitely helpful. :slight_smile:

1 Like